trying to stay positive

It’s really hard to write about positive stuff when everything that is happening in the world right now is so devastating. That’s a big reason why I haven’t written lately because I don’t have a lot of positive to say. It’s an effort, believe me. But, as I look around I realize how lucky I am that none of this devastation has affected me or my immediate family so that’s a positive note and my heart hurts for those who haven’t been so lucky. So, I will post just random positive stuff for now.

As you know from former posts that I’ve gotten into listening to pod casts lately. My sister showed me a couple that she listens to and The Moth is one of them. The last time I was home she looked them up online to show me and said that they have live shows that you can tell your stories. Well, last night that’s where I was – at Dad’s Garage telling a story based on something creepy and scary. I had Charlie, Link and Stiletto there to cheer me on. I wasn’t as nervous as I thought I would be standing up in front of a large audience – I’ve done this previously but it’s been awhile. But, my scores at the end weren’t what I’d hoped for. See, they choose 4 person teams from the audience to act as a judging panel and they judge your story based on a few guidelines they are given. Plus, your story can only be 5 minutes in length. They will ding a triangle when it’s time for you to wrap it up and from there you only have 1 minute to seriously wrap it up or else you get the harmonica. I made a mental note that if I was chosen to give my story that I would not get the harmonica.

So, my story was about a time I was arrested along with several of my friends on a dilapidated train trestle over the Wabash River. This particular trestle was haunted and named “Purple Head”. Folklore was that a man tried to hang himself from the trestle and was decapitated and if you went out there on a full moon you could see a purple head rising out of the water. Well my story was when I thought I saw the head it was only a police spotlight telling me to get off the bridge and that we were under arrest. Long story made very short I put in a few humorous notes before immediately wrapping it up once I heard the DING.

So, I was a bit disappointed of my scores – I thought I did well compared to the guy who told about his brother sexting chickens and ran so long he got the harmonica and the woman who told some very uncomfortable story about her brothers friend molesting her – harmonica again. AND, the woman who told a quick 2 minute story of some man whistling in her yard when he turned out to be this man who lived in her town who had Alzheimer’s (I mean, why did she not know this if she’s lived in this small town her whole life??) Regardless, the points are moot, I guess, although the next time I will hone my story and polish it before stepping up on stage for another story slam. It was a good opportunity and I’m glad I did it. I still can’t watch the video that Charlie covertly took of me on stage yet. I’d be like, I sound so dumb. God, this is terrible – no wonder I only got a 7.6 from that one group.

We are our own worst critic, aren’t we?

In two weeks we leave for vacation in Colorado. Other than our flight arrangements we really don’t have an agenda that we are sticking to. We hope to meet up with a fav blogger and a college buddy of mine. Other than that it will be some brewery tours, sightseeing and hopefully maybe even some live music although, I’m not so sure of Red Rocks after reading this post.

This year is flying by and before we know it – 2018. In the New Year I am starting back to college and hopefully a new role. More about that later.

Take care and stay loose, as an old graphic designer prof of mine used to say.



Sometimes you just have to take incentive into your own hands. This is so true with my current job. My sometimes office mate often tells me that I have it made. I probably do since I don’t deal with the things he deals with every day and this is where I’ll tell you about our team and how uneven it is.

I know I have often wrote about work in the past – I’ve had some growing pains with this position and the “team” I work with including my manager. Since I’ve been running a wire center I’ve learned to go to different people for questions and help. There’s only a certain few that I do go to. I’ve been screwed over by others on our team – including our resource manager who I’ll name Fred Flintstone. The only reason he’s been called that is because he’s friends with our manager and he just gave him that title. Our manager has segregated the team into different responsibilities even though we all have the title of “Engineer”.

Some of us are actually doing the duties of an engineer – running wire centers, doing design work and overseeing construction of the jobs. Like myself. I have just come into starting to enjoy it as I’m pretty much doing my thing and people don’t get in my way.

Then, we have the wonder twins. The wonder twins are responsible for submitting all the permits for our jobs. They work side-by-side all day long in the same vicinity as our manager with their sweet smelling candles, candy dishes, refrigerator stocked with creamer, LaCroix and bottled water. Larry complains that they are so busy doing permits and that’s all they do. Meanwhile, they have soaked up all the OT for the group for the remainder of the year. Larry’s pulled so much he could probably buy a nice ski boat by now. (Personally, I think he’s banking for his divorce.)

Part of the team sits down at the southside of the city by the airport. I used to work a bit down there during the time I was going to take over this wire center from one of the chicks down there. I didn’t mind it – much. But, to put it mildly I did not fit in really well with the demographic down there.

The other whitebreads work out in the sticks towards the northeast outside the perimeter. By whitebreads I mean rednecks. This is where FF works with “the guys” and one lone woman from India who used to be my work BFF until she defected out there and now I have to watch what I say to her because I suspect she repeats all my instant messages to them.

Then, there’s the office where the twins, our manager, myself from time to time and Patricia work – on the west side of town (inside the perimeter). But, recently I have started to move over to the central office closer to my house where Donnie and Chris work – Donnie does an entirely different engineering job – he’s like a building engineer whereas the rest of us engineers deal with outside (plant) stuff. I often ask Chris questions because he also runs a wire center. Plus, it’s a lot more peaceful and close to the house. Mind you – I just took the incentive to move over here on my own. I figured everyone else works where they want to work then why shouldn’t I.

The southside team all runs wire centers as well as most of the whitebreads except for Shampa the Indian woman and Fred. Fred just approves jobs and dictates stuff even though he has the same title as I and is at my same position level. Shampa just designs certain jobs and that’s all she does. I’m waiting for them to heap some more responsibility on her and see what she does. She just sits out there in the sticks in her cocoon of the guys and does those same jobs over and over again. I was doing those jobs over and over again when I first started but then the Fred decided I needed too much help, bad mouthed me behind my back to the manager and thus, why I got a mediocre review although after that I was given a wire center to run.

Hmmm, how does that work – you’re rated as mediocre BUT we’re going to give you a wire center to run where you have to deal with construction people, play a customer facing role and do more complicated designs?

Makes sense, right? NOPE.

So, this isn’t going to happen on my next review if it’s the last thing I do. Anyway, what I’ve been describing this whole time is the structure of our “team” and illustrating that aside from running wire centers like we’re supposed to do there’s people who don’t do shEEot. Although I’m glad I’m running a wire center and sitting in the central office now – but it was all incentive that I took on my own. I totally could have used  mentoring from my manager but I’ve learned that he lacks basic social skills. I’m just amazed at some people even getting the manager position when they can’t even manage to communicate with people. Alot of the people on the team “think he’s the best manager ever” sans the twins. But, I think that’s only because they’re friends. Me, I don’t think I’ve ever had a best manager unless it was the one I had when I worked for a local government.

I decided I liked this quote and what it stands for: Incentive

friday chex mix – and, another prayer

Friends and Working Out 

Last week, Charlie went to Florida to see the kids and I stayed home and maintained home life with the dogs. Unfortunately, while she was gone we did not have a working dryer. Since I was watching Link’s cats I hauled washed clothes over there to put in her dryer. Saturday, I went to Incubus with Emil and this new girl -I don’t know new girl enough to give her a name. Maybe Nicole – that sounds like a straight girl name, doesn’t it? So, the plan was Emil picking me up and almost killing us in a car accident on the way to pick up Maybe-Nicole to go have dinner prior to the show. I was initially a little skeptical of the evening because originally when we met Maybe-Nicole she didn’t make the best impression on me nor Charlie. I had already told Emil that if I felt like a 3rd wheel then I was outta there. Maybe-Nicole just broke up with her live-in boyfriend and was dipping her toe into the lake of lesbianism with Emil.

[I don’t know about you but is there a gong going on in your head saying DANGER, DANGER, DANGER?]

But, the evening went well – we- um – had some special brownies that kind of enhanced the show. Along with some whiskey that I had snuck in in a special compartment in my bag with pads and tampons thrown on top. All weekend I practiced guitar to no avail. Despite my fingers developing some great calluses on the tips I still suck at guitar. I really do. I will leave the performing to the pros. Emil was supposed to rehearse with me all weekend but she got caught up in this Maybe-Nicole girl. At one point during that evening we were talking about work and Maybe-Nicole trying to make a better impression and be nice asked me what I did. I explained pointing to the wires above that provide service to everything that was around us (so that should tell you I work in utilities and engineering) and Emil said, I don’t think I ever knew that about you. Here’s what I wanted to say, Because every damn time we’re together all you’re talking about is your ex is why. 

I did not say that, of course. But honestly some of our friends they’re either falling off the map because they met a girl or all they have to talk about is said girl. It’s gets so one-dimensional and boring after awhile. Seriously, can we contribute anything to the conversation aside from who you’re screwing, thinking about screwing or wanting to screw right now?? I’m tired of it. It makes me want to start another Meetup group – one of serious conversation or one that people get out and actually DO something other than talk about Tinder. It’s one of the things I really appreciate about some of our friends who do provide thought-provoking conversations that are not always about themselves. I need more of that to feed my brain.

I’ve been going to Orangetheory every night this week to make up for my eating and drinking debauchery of last week. I love it and the more I go the more I want to go. For some reason the subject of our friends and how no one in our group really works out came up last night. Charlie, being the lucky one in landscaping all day doesn’t have to pay for an elevated heart rate and lifts weedeaters and saws in place of dumbbells said, Sure we have friends who work out.

Who? Who do we know other than Todd and Christie who live in Dahlonega and cycle and run all the time do we know?

Neither of us could name anyone. It’s part of the social aspect of why I like group fitness is the outlet to talk to other people who are trying to get fit like myself. (Believe me, I’ve asked some of our friends to come with me to the gym and they look at me as if I’m asking them to join a cult or something. They sort of back away shaking their heads, trying not to trip and fall backwards.) It used to be competition when I was in bootcamp but not so much where I go now. Although, every time we have a rowing competition in the gym this one burly guy always wins it. But, then I think – maybe this is the only thing he wins ever – so then he deserves it. I think most of these people, myself included, could be across the street at the pizza place drinking beer and eating a pie with pesto crust and instead they’re in here sweating their bums off. Working hard. Yes, I’m bitter about the pesto crust as I row and look across the street at the pizza place. There should be a law against putting a Mellow Mushroom across the street from an Orangetheory – it should be a zoning law. Like not being aable to put Industrial next to Residential.


Charlie and I are getting ready for our music party the Friday after next and going to see our friends in Asheville. We’re still planning food and drink but think we have a handle on it. I know next week is going to be hectic preparing. There’s little things that tick me off about inviting people to parties – like, not RSVP-ing. EVER. Or, when you ask them to they put a comment like, Oh sorry I forgot about this and I made other plans. 

I know it’s a fact of every party thrown that there are always going to be people who never respond without some major arm twisting. Then, there are those who say, We don’t know yet? These are the people who still haven’t made up their mind if they’re going to go to work or not tomorrow. Everything is “We’ll see.” 

Ok, we’ll see if we invite you to the next party, how about that?

This weekend is anything goes – we don’t (at least I don’t think we do) have any plans to speak of but maybe it will be getting ready for the following weekend. Even without the “We’ll see’s” or “Maybe’s” we still have about 20 people confirmed.


In all the mix Link has to have a surgery tomorrow so please send positive thoughts and prayers or even energy today for our dear friend.


a challenge

This is why I haven’t written in a while because nothing really new is going on. It’s just the same work/study grind over here.

Be careful what you wish for. All this time I wanted a challenging job. One that I would learn something new every day and would challenge me. I have that now – but, I think the universe wasn’t listening very closely – I meant “challenging” vs every day is a challenge.

See the difference? Challenging is stimulating, interesting, and thought-provoking:

Whereas a challenge is  something that by its nature or character serves as a call to battle, contest, special effort, a call to fight, a duel, a demand to explain, justify, etc.
That seems to be where work is at nowadays. It is challenging – very – but with almost no support. You are pretty much left on your own to figure shit out. My manager is never here. He decided to work from home the entire week last week because his kids were on spring break. I just love how everyone who has kids in my group gets this buy of, Oh, I have to work from home because my kids are off.
Everyone on my team works from home except for myself, Shampa (only because they are so lame in never ordering her a laptop when she started) and the twins, of course, because, you know, they go to work to hang out and have FUN!
Yesterday, I was steamed. I work in the same building as construction so when there’s a damage job in my area then come to me about it. Well, we had a huge cable down in my area and they said they needed a job created so they could order the materials and get it fixed. So, I created the job (which, takes a minute to create) and then did a design on it. Mind you – I have not done that much design work and most of the people I work with in the construction office almost don’t know how to open up Microstation let alone lend any help. So, I thought, It can’t be that hard to design something that replaces another. Right? Right.
Well, it was still a pain in the ass but I did it. I mean, it was DONE. Ready to be approved, firmed and sent off to get the order placed. Then- construction started whining about having to order and put up a cable that large when we only have 22 working pairs in it. (engineer speak) Effing whiney ASSES. I’m giving you your cable, beeeotches! Plus, this shit is coming out of my budget NOT YOURS, F*CKERS.
Here’s the large division (as wide as the Mississippi) between construction people and engineers. Construction people think engineers are just lazy a-holes that sit behind a computer all day writing stuff that doesn’t work in the field. Engineers think construction people just want to sleep in their trucks all day and whine about doing work. There’s stereotypes on both sides, sure.
So, these bitches go screaming to my boss about having to put up this large cable, blah, blah, blah. Meanwhile, the boss who came in at 10:00 that day (because remember last week he worked from home), took a long lunch and then parked himself on the phone the rest of the afternoon so I couldn’t talk to him about it – but, he did manage to send me an email saying I should use a 100 pair cable.
OH! (Slapping forehead) why didn’t you tell me! Ok, I’ll do that except – what the HELL do I do with the (math in head) 600-22 = 578 pairs left in the existing cable? Oh, well Lanie – just figure that shit out! Geez. You’re supposed to be an engineer and not bother your boss about these trivial THINGS. Go on, girl – get it done – especially since now there’s some angry woman in cable repairs is emailing you every 15 minutes wanting to know WHERES MY MUTHA-F*CKING CABLE…………………..beeotch?
Ima like, BeeotchyougetyourcableIMWORKINGONIT!
This is a day in the life of an engineer.
So, next it’s like this – you only have 22 working pairs in that effing cable so you need to actually SEE which of dem bitches are workin’. You don NEED the rest of those 578 bitches cuz they don work. OK? Eff them- they out drinking cervezas like your bitch @ss should be right now.
Ok, that makes sense – how do I see which ones – out of 600 – are working?
Oh, that’s EASY. Just go here, click on this, and type a bunch of this shit and run a ADKMCDKC<K Report and it will show you.
A what? Where? How?
Finally, I get the report – 42 pages long of gibberish. I mean, it looked like someone played tic-tac-toe with 42 pages of hieroglyphics that made no sense. Now I know how the Egyptians felt – they actually couldn’t read the shit they put on the walls – someone just told them to run a hieroglyphics report on some rock that wasn’t placed right or some shit. They were engineers, too, you know.
So, I went into my bosses office 3 times to talk to him about this report and he was still on a conference call. Could he have emailed me and said, What’s up? Sure. How about send me an instant message while he’s just staring blankly at his computer screen while he’s listening saying, Hey, still on the phone what you got? But, no.
Finally, I see that the twins are back from their daily field visit romantic excursion and send Sherrie a message Is other twin there? Hoping that Larry can help me because I sure know Sherrie can’t as the only pair she knows is – ok, don’t go there, Lanie.

Sherrie happily tells me that Larry is IN. I then ask if Baxter is off the phone and she replies, Oh he left.

You can IMAGINE what was going through my mind then. It was something like, You KNEW I needed to talk to you and you just took off. (in so many words)
Get my drift?
So, I go into Larry and Sherries office and ask Larry about that report. Larry doesn’t know how to read it but does suggest that instead of putting in a 800 foot cable with a smaller one just to do a jumper and splice here and splice there and blah, blah, blah(yeah, I feel your confusion). So then, another engineer comes in. This guy actually orders the equipment – sans cable that I’m trying to build. Larry hands him the report. He doesn’t know how to read it either. Then, they tell me I should just go to the rundown, dilapidated, zombie-world central office in my area and check the wall to see which pairs are working in that cable. Like it’s going to be this:
HERE’S THE EXISTING CABLE, LANIE (which I’m fighting off zombies trying to write this shit down) and it has 22 PAIRS IN IT AND THEY ARE NUMBERS, 61, 72, 96……up to 600 THE ANSWER IS HERE!
Right. I ain’t driving my bitch ass over to zombie-land-creepy-ass building and LOOK ON THE WALL. FUCK THAT SHIT! I picked up the report and left them to their gossiping over Baxter of all people. No one is any effing help over here. I went home steamed knowing I didn’t get my job done (which, really bothers me because this is my area and I’m responsible for it) and that I was going to have a hundred emails from that bitch in cable repairs – WHERES MY MUTHA-F*CKING CABLE………
Don’t you hate when you’re trying to help and people are yelling at you or not helping you help? I do. Makes me a bit angry.
I come in this morning and SUPRISE the boss isn’t in. Larry’s making the plans for the day with him and Sherrie and I go in and message one of the other engineers that actually know more about this stuff than anyone and offer to bring over donuts if he can look at what I have so far. He said, Come on over.
So, I spent the morning going over random reports and him showing me how to read them, what would be the best design for the current situation and how to proceed. Shit my MANAGER should have been showing me, y’all. I mean, when he said he was a hands off kind of guy I really thought he meant he sat back and let you do your work – which, I’m fine with but I didn’t think it meant stay away and leave me alone, don’t ask me any questions and I don’t want to have to teach you anything.
See where I’m coming from? It’s a CHALLENGE and if I hear from that cable repair woman one.more.time………….

it’s never glamorous or easy

Even for movie stars – it’s never glamorous. There’s photographers sticking their cameras in your face, people calling all the time and constant appointments and engagements.  Just like people think my job is glamorous and that I have it made – it’s not. I spent three hours with developers on Monday getting yelled at because they need service for the subdivision they’re building and I can’t give them any answers except that we’re working on it and it’s a process.

I recently had a recruiter contact me about another job in my field. They engaged me through Linkedin and asked if I’d be interested in this job. I looked up the title of the job on Indeed and found it – I also found it was a recruiting company listing the job.

As a rule – I’ve never really trusted recruiters. They talk a big game but all they’re looking for is their commission if they can place someone in the position their client is advertising. They work for the client or the business that has the slot open not the person who’s looking for a job. I asked the woman to send me a little more info about the position and she did. I turned it down -it was too much of a commute and the knowledge base was stretching it a bit. In short – I wouldn’t feel comfortable in accepting it. Although, a few more years in the position I’m currently in – I could pull it off.

After I turned it down she continued to engage me asking if there were any openings in my group, who my manager was and if she could meet with him and possibly myself. [Like she was the one looking for a job] I was like, WTF, lady? I said that I didn’t feel comfortable with that and to go to the company recruiting website for information on openings within. Like I tell everyone – you have to go to the career website and apply just like everyone else and hope you get lucky enough to score an interview. I mean, I’ve probably put out thousands of applications over the years. You have to put in the work, sweat and tears writing applications, revising your resume, and [if you’re lucky] scheduling interviews. No recruiter ever got me a job.

I had to drop off my laptop at the corporate office yesterday (such an oxymoron since I work for a tech company and my computer is a POS) that happened to be across the street from the JAIL of my previous job. (Let’s call them the D*cks of Transportation). I had texted my buddy over there to meet me for lunch but he wasn’t sure if he could or not so I ate before going down there. Just as I was paying for my parking meter I heard him shout to me across the street. I ended up meeting him while he ate lunch. Just as I thought -4 other of my previous co-workers were there and walked up and hugged my neck – at least my old co-workers were nice (well, some of them but never any upper management). One of them took over one of my former committees and I was asking him how he liked working with the committee head and he groaned and we commiserated. As much as I’m having growing pains where I’m now I SURE wouldn’t go back to that mess. Then, one of the guys asked if there were any positions where I was and said to email him. I wanted to say, WTF, dude? I’m not a recruiter. Here’s my advice go to [company website] dot com backslash careers and apply just like everyone else.

I mean, maybe I missed my calling as everyone else seems to think I can get them a job. I will tell you that I went to a career coach during the time I was laid off. It was very expensive but in hindsight worth every penny. Maybe people should do that – maybe that’s what gives me an edge over them. Honestly, some people I wonder how they got the job they have. I was on the phone with a tech support person for the company later that day and he was talking to me from his home in Pensacola, Fla. I was like, How do I get your job? I said it in jest but he told me that he started out where I am now and just moved into the position. I was like, DAAAMN.

I think most of the time getting a job is 10% what you know, 20% who you know and the rest is just sheer dumb luck.

SO –

-I’ve been putting off telling you but I didn’t pass my test. It was such a pain in the butt, too. When I went in you would have thought I was going to JAIL (my second reference to that this post – maybe too many episodes of Wentworth? Who knows….) I had to put all my stuff in a locker, get patted down, waved with a wand, they had to check my glasses – like I had special SuperWoman glasses that projected all the answers onto the lenses or something. Anyway, after three hours of grinding it out I got my results. FAIL. I was mad, of course. I went home only to find that Charlie was still out at a job grinding it out. I went over there to help her clean up – literally as it had rained earlier and it was a muddy mess. So now I signed up to take it again. I really need to start hitting that pretty hard but I just needed a few days reprieve from it. I know – no one ever said this shit was easy.



For some reason this week has just really kicked my @ss. It’s Friday and I’m ready for a nice weekend  kickin’ it with Charlie and perhaps Benjii playing darts and having some beers.

I’ve fought a sinus infection all week – that’s part of the reason it’s kicked my butt so bad. Thankfully, my doctor knows that I get these things once in the spring and once in the fall  and called in a prescription over the phone. I’m glad I got to it when I did because it would have put me down a lot harder if I had waited a few days to start the meds.

Charlie put in a rock job for a client this week. She worked really hard on it, too, and it looked fabulous.


The client was a little wishy-washy at the end, though. Charlie thinks it was because the client thought the rock was going to be larger than what was placed. (we went over that with the her several times prior to installing it) I thought it was more like buyers remorse on writing the final check for the outstanding invoice amount.

Sometimes it just works like that in your work and life. You’re plugging along thinking you’re doing great and next thing you know your manager, boss, client or even co-worker tells you you’re doing sh*tty.

Sometimes it’s true and you don’t realize it but often times it’s their stuff just projecting onto you. I try to take it in stride, I do. I try to learn from my mistakes and not let others tear me down or do that to myself. If you remember my corporate image and saved by zero posts you know I haven’t been exactly thrilled with that aspect of my life lately. Along with studying for my PMP I’ve been applying for different roles within the company. This morning, I had my first “virtual” interview. And —

–I blew that, too.

At least I feel like I did. My computer decided to take a dive right before the interview and I had to use the call in meeting method. Brittany and Kelisha on the other end did not like that, I thought. But, maybe I’ll actually make the second round from them not seeing my ugly mug. Who knows if this thing is a fit or if it will go any further. But, it’s Friday and I’m bound and determined to brush myself off, keeping studying and get the FREAKING PMP cert and move on!

It’s getting to be almost that time to tip a beer at the Irish pub so cheers everyone and have a great weekend – you know I’m gonna!






corporate image

I’ve been working at our other office down by the airport this week. After the whole snafu a few weeks back I went to my boss and asked him if I should consider going down there and working with another co-worker who was handing over their wire center to me and he agreed that it was a good idea.

Talk about leading the cows around the barn to show them food.

When I was hired he said he was a hands off kind of guy. At the time I took that to mean that he’s not in to micromanaging. That was fine with me as my former manager was a micromanager. What I didn’t expect that to mean was days going by without any communication/interaction whatsoever. I used to be the one to keep him in the loop about everything I was doing but now I’m not. Once I told him I was going to work down there temporarily for a while and got his response of Ok, let’s see how it goes, I was done. I know how it’s going to go. It’s going to go a lot better than working up there in that construction office where I can go a whole day and no one even knows I’m there. I went back there to work on Wednesday this past week and no one even knew I was there until one point Larry and another co-worker, Don (who works in yet another office building) burst in.

Don was telling Larry that he needed to get his filing cabinets out of there soon. Larry told him not to take my wall. I had lined them up to block out Carmine coming in every 5 minutes back in the day when Larry and Sherry were in there. I was sitting there looking at both of them like, I really don’t care what you do, and said so.

Then, Don starts asking me what’s going on with the half-built cubical walls. I said that I didn’t know. Then, he asked where they came from. I again said that I didn’t know. Larry was like, Don’t get me started on that. Which was funny because aside from helping Baxter from putting one of them together one day he basically gets to run around with Sherry all day and do nothing.

Don was rambling on about something else and Larry said, I’m gonna come see you. I shrugged like, Whatever. I wanted to say, What about? They finally left and I spent the rest of the day in there working and no one else came in. No idea where Patricia was – I got asked that, too, and I said my standard, I don’t know. Even if I did I’m not telling any of those people shit.

When I work in the south office I work next to three of the women I originally started working with in our old office – before we had to move out and we all got tossed to the wind. There’s way more interaction there and I actually get asked out to lunch and to the field to look at shit. So, I’m going to try to stay down here as much as possible because I’m just so over the b.s. at the other office. I guess I need to go ahead and take charge of my professional development and push on through or else I’ll be sitting in that stupid construction office waiting for things to happen that never will.

Speaking of professional development, I went to this free seminar by Brandie Mitchell on how to package the product of you. There was some great information there and it was held in one of the company’s corporate offices. I’m trying to get out and network more with other people in the organization of where I work and this was a good opportunity.

Some of the things I took away from it were this: People will pay you more for what you know than what you do.

  • Build a platform that packages your message of who you are and what you do.
  • Become a signature in the way you do things.
  • Make a list of things you do best and skills you use in each of them.
  • Identify the most important lessons you have learned in life.
  • What do others ask you to help them with?
  • What types of customers do you enjoy working with?
  • List your achievements and accomplishments.
  • Create an action plan for 90 days, 6 months, 12 months.

Those are some of the things I took away from the event. I already have an action plan in place. In 90 days I want to be PMP certified and then continue to make contacts and build a network. By 12 months I’d really like to be in a different place at work. Whether that means running a wire center successfully or something altogether different. My vision is to be more corporate and be in that kind of an environment. I feel that’s where my heart is taking me these days. Whether my customer is a contractor or a corporate manager – it doesn’t matter – they both want to build something. The customers I enjoy working with are the ones who enjoy building something that helps others and I think I’ve answered at least one of the questions above.


social media and blogging

Social media, it’s a contest on who’s having the best time or the worst. I myself am just about done with it. And, here’s a Carrie Bradshaw question:

  1. Is Facebook for those who will not, cannot find the time to write a blog? I only say this because there seems to be a lot of people who are on their soapboxes have a lot to say and are trying to cram in all in on Facebook with 100 posts per day. If you have that much to say to the world then why not start a blog? And, next question:
  2. Does it take the place of real communication?


Part one Lanie answer/opinion: I think Facebook and blogs are two different animals. I think most people who post on Facebook frequently could not wrap their minds around starting a blog, topics to write about, etc. (Even though some are posting their opinions enough to start a blog) Some people use Facebook to promote their blog. I don’t. There are only a select few friends who know my blog address because I like to use it a lot as a sounding board and not all my friends would appreciate the candor of my blog.

When I first started blogging none of my friends knew my address. This was many blogs ago, too. Blogging has taken a turn historically. I think Facebook has destroyed a lot of the blogging community. Facebook is like McDonalds fast food (to me) whereas a well written blog post is like a filet mignon cooked perfectly on your grill at home. After some time blogging I eventually met other bloggers who commented on my posts and me theirs. We all became friends and traveled to Chicago to meet up. Only before we got there did we share pictures of one another just so we were able to recognize each other when we met up. Those were the fun days of blogging. Now, only I and one other blogger out of that group still blog. Everyone else has moved on and I don’t think they have even followed me to this blog. Nowadays, people just lurk and they rarely comment. I’m guilty of that myself. I’m always looking for other blogs to read and a fresh outlook. When I try to do searches with key words on blogs by typing in “gay” I get a lot of “my coming out story” or men’s dicks. I like to identify with LGBT bloggers (as well as bloggers of other walks of life), however, I don’t always want to read about coming out stories nor look at men’s penises. I like to read stuff that’s more real, every day stuff. There’s been a few bloggers I’ve dropped because I don’t think they really write about authentic stuff [anymore] -about what’s really going on – which, I find a lot more interesting than their sugar coated look at me, everything’s great posts. It’s almost like Facebook all over again and that brings us to the next answer:

Part two Lanie answer/opinion: I DO think Facebook takes the place of real communication in 85% of the people who use it frequently. Oh, I don’t have time to bother responding to your text but I can like your FB post and even comment on it instead. And, what’s even more mystifying is when they HAVE your number and could call or text but they choose to use FB messenger. Is there a reason for this that I’m missing?

I get that social media is important for marketing purposes. Especially, after reading this article. There are some staggering statistics in that article. People use it for different things, sure. Myself, if I even post it’s to share information about a party we’re having or to share pictures in the past – mostly, dog pictures. I’ve read a lot of people just enjoy the posts of funny videos, pictures or articles. I get that. There are a million ways to use Facebook what is disturbing is when it becomes a place for people to get up on their soapbox and preach – mostly to the choir. Or as a primary means of communication. And, finally I saw this article: In the time you spend on social media each year, you could read 200 books. Now that’s something to wrap your head around and it doesn’t have to be books, either. You could learn a new skill, get a certification to get a better job, spend the time working out, getting to know a new friend, or blog.

I can hear it now: I just don’t have anything to say in a blog.

Sure you do. All you have to do is start writing.

Let’s get more real, if you have a lot to say start a blog. We need more voices out there in the blogging community. Let’s not let blogging die. And, if any of you have some authentic blogs to share please send me a comment. This blogger would appreciate it!





update and it was a day

Well, it turns out that being two up in the group was a nasty rumor and I could choke that guy who started it. I found this out because yesterday Shampa had her review with Baxter and she asked him about it.

“So, is the rumor true  – that we’re two up and need to let some people go?”

“No, where did you hear that?”

“From RT, he was talking about it.” 

“Well, tell RT if that were true he’d be the first to go. In fact, we have room for another person.”

Soon as Shampa got out of her review she messaged me. I in turn messaged Charlie who has been in Florida taking care of her Dad. So a huge collective ‘Whew’ went up.

Like I said previously, the rumor came up right before we were to get our reviews and on Wednesday. I came home from work fit to be tied and then I noticed the city truck that is supposed to pick up brush on the street picked up everyone’s except ours. I grabbed my keys and ran  out to the truck and drove down the street and parked behind them. I got out and immediately was in their faces asking why they picked up everyone else’s brush except ours. They gave some lame excuse they were picking up the old stuff first – right. I told them that pile was old stuff it had been sitting there for two weeks.

This all came about because our d*ckhead neighbor, Richard, called in a complaint one time because we were dumping debris at the street. He told them that it was coming from our landscape clients outside of the neighborhood. He is just jealous that we actually have a thriving business while he sits at home all day and looks at porn and drinks. Basically, he has nothing better to do than stick his nose in other peoples – ours – business. So, because of his complaint we had to meet with the city code enforcement officer and go over all the cleanup we’ve done in our backyard, show them the cuts, where the branches came from, etc. Such b.s. because we pay a lot of taxes to live here and this pickup is included in that. Which, is maddening because d*ckhead and his wife are RENTERS who don’t even pay taxes.

Since he complained every time we do any cleanup in our backyard and put it at the street they just pass us by – even after meeting with the city to explain where it came from that it did not come from clients outside of the city. So, you can see why I was in their faces. The guys sweeping up told me to talk to the driver and I told him the same thing and he said they would swing around and get it. I told them that they had better. If they didn’t come back I was going to go find them again and write down every one of their names and take it to the mayor of the city. As it was I drove home and got on the phone with city hall and gave the woman who picked up an ear load of it. She said she’d email the code enforcement officer and I said, Fine, go ahead but he’s not going to call me back or do anything about it and that I was sick of it. They did come back but I bet you $100 that if I hadn’t have been home they would have left it for another two weeks.

So, after that I needed a strong drink. It was a day.


The Wonder Twins

This time last year I was really miserable at my old job. I had a really toxic manager, a workload of 25 projects and there wasn’t a day that went by that I didn’t fantasize about quitting. Around February, I started seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. I had a few interviews with a large corporation. Finally, in April I was hired at that large corporation. This was the first time I’d been in the private sector for 6 years. My two previous jobs were state government and after spending 6 years there I was ready to leave it behind. As far as I was concerned it was filled with lazy people who sat around all day figuring out how to throw other people under the bus for their lack of work ethic.

So, working for a large corporation is not unlike the government in some ways – it still takes FOREVER to start doing what you’re supposed to be doing. You’re waiting for certification classes to take place before they’ll let you do anything. You may be waiting for computer equipment to be ordered so you’ll actually have something to email on and use. You may even be waiting for uniforms to be ordered. (Ironically, I have a uniform but I only wear it on days I have no idea what I’ll wear – “Oh, here we are – blue janitor pants and a grey burger king shirt and “may I take your order” or “Ma-am, you want to show me where the leak is coming from?”

What I managed to leave behind is a toxic manager – my current one is amazingly laid back – if not a little too so -but no complaints here. Right after I started I was part of a team the manager was assembling. At the time, he still had three more positions to hire for. In came my favorite co-worker – I’ll name her Shampa (this is the nickname Charlie gave her and it stuck). Next was Larry and Sherry (not their real names, of course) – the wonder twins.

Remember The Wonder Twins? I watched them on TV when I was a kid.


Wonder Twin Powers ACTIVATE into -an eagle or a bear or in Larry and Sherry’s case a COMPLETE FIBER NETWORK. (if that gives you any indication of where I work and no – it’s not the one who’s been SAYING that they’re coming and never do – it’s the one that’s always been here.)

So, Larry and Sherry came as a TEAM. I would bet $$ that when negotiating Larry probably told our manager that he wouldn’t come over unless Sherry came with because the two of them were a TEAM in their previous tech position. At this point everyone was at one work center except for them. They were at the construction office they always worked. Our work center was closing down and all us were going to separate to different offices – some out of town – including Shampa. Some down by the airport and then myself, our manager and Patricia (who I’ve written about before) moved to the construction office with Larry and Sherry.

At the time we first moved over here both the Twins were off at Engineer training together and just Patricia and I had the office. But, once the twins have gotten back and time has passed it’s come to my attention that their ongoing work affair has gotten the HELL on my nerves. We all do different jobs –despite all of us having the same title as engineer. But, even so both the twins do their work TOGETHER. If Larry has to go meet on a site and talk to someone, Sherry has to go with so they can do lunch together. Most times they don’t ask anyone to go but I’ve been on lunches with them and they always split meals. Larry will eat whatever Sherry wants to eat and lets her order. (The last few times I’ve felt a bit ill so have decided never to do lunch with them again unless it’s the whole team for our bosses bday or something).

Individually, they’re both nice people – don’t get me wrong. On the odd chance one of them isn’t in the same room you can almost have a conversation. But, once they’re together each one of them has to take part in the conversation, finish each other’s sentences or only have a conversation with each other despite two other people in the room. It’s kind of maddening, to be honest. It’s not any better when all of us are here together, either, because Patricia will aggressively try to take part in the conversation – so much, that her and Sherry will talk about makeup or some girlie thing that neither Larry or I can’t compete in. But, I don’t compete for conversation, honestly. When I come in I politely say “Good morning” and leave it at that. I don’t usually even try to participate unless I need to break in with a work related question.

Then, since we’re in a construction office and the twins used to work in a crew we get a lot of construction people coming in and out all day long looking for them. Most of them I don’t mind except for this one woman who is a scheduler- let’s call her Carmine- who comes in, like, 12 times a day and asks where Larry is. “Like I’m his personal secretary, bi-otch” I mean, she obviously has a thing for Larry, too, and I almost wish that she and Sherry would have some big fight over him and just get over it – hell, I’d even set up the jello pudding wrestling ring and sell tickets.

Carmine isn’t one of those women who like other women, either. As much as I’ve answered the best I can where the hell Larry was she still looks at me like I’m a gnome. So, from now on I’m going to answer her questions with I don’t know. As much as I’d like to follow that with a why you don’t call him he has two phones I don’t want to stir the pot around here. One day everyone was out so I decided to actually lock the office door – to no avail – Carmine who has a key let herself in and said, “Oh, I didn’t realize anyone was in here – where’s Larry?” So, there’s no keeping that bi-otch out of here so I try to ignore her.

I asked Patricia one day after she had been in here asking. “Do you ever think it’s weird that she comes in here all the time looking for Larry?”

She just smiled and shrugged and said, “I try to stay out of it.”

“I hear ya.”

I did mention it to Larry the other day. I mock-slapped my forehead and said, “I forgot to tell you that Carmine was in here looking for you…….like about 12 times!”

“Oh, I don’t know what her problem is she knows she can call me”.

“I think she has a thing for you.”

Larry just laughed nervously and cut his eyes to the side in fear that Sherry would hear and said, “Oh, I don’t think that.”

I know there’s worse things at work but sometimes I just feel like I’m working with a bunch of high school kids. Yesterday, I got to go out to Shampa’s office and work with them. I think it’s come to the attention of the team manager that I need some additional training and that I’m not getting it where I am. They are all designers and run centers out there so no one has time for high school shit most of the team’s expertise is in that office. I get frustrated where I work – for the reasons above and that no one knows shit around here. If I’m designing a job (which, along with that and running a center is what I want to do) and have a question there’s no one here to ask. I have to get on our message system and talk to Shampa or one of them out there. I have no one to look over my shoulder. Even though Patricia runs 4 centers and I’m slated to get one of them she doesn’t know how to design stuff – which, is what I’ve been doing. There are some of us that want to design and some not and the ones not are all in my office except for me. It was nice being out there – people were working – quietly or every once in a while having a conversation but it wasn’t intrusive like it is where I work. So, after yesterday I mentioned to my boss that I could go out there a few times per week and work and he said that sounded good. I’m stoked because that means I’m only here twice a week and that fat bitch Carmine can stick it!