Archive | January, 2011

Ego Trip

31 Jan

Phew! What a night! After a shaky start, Sunday continued to prove that I should’ve just stayed home.

Now, I get it. I am at the ABSOLUTE BOTTOM of the chain here, and considering most of the people who work here had my job at one time, I’m sure they too encountered the criticism and the rudeness that has become commonplace. And maybe when/if I get promoted, I’ll be a raging bitch to the people on staff. But tonight, it sucks, and has been pretty relentless since I walked in the door.

Here’s a sampling of the conversations I’ve had:

While asking the editor to take a call:

Me: Excuse me, someone’s on the other line for you.

Editor: (after taking the call) Next time, write the message on a post-it, because when you scream at me, it makes me lose my train of thought.

Ok, so I sit approximately 12 INCHES away from this person, and MOST DEFINITELY did not scream.

While on the phone with a frazzled producer:

FP: I need you to get me the number for so-and-so NOW. IT’S URGENT.

Me: (taken aback) Sure thing. Just give me one sec.

Shall we talk about screaming now? Because she was MOST DEFINITELY screaming at me.

While exchanging light conversation with someone talking about their Saturday night:

Me: That’s such a great story! Haha, hilarious.

STASN: Yea, we can’t talk about this right now, I need you to do something for me.

Wait, we weren’t talking about anything. You were telling me about your night.

While sitting there in silence doing absolutely nothing with my supervisor:

Supervisor: Can you call the IT department for me, my computer isn’t working.

Me: Sure, what’s wrong with it?

Supervisor: I need you to call IT! Get somebody down here to fix it.

Of course, when I called, they wanted to know what was wrong with the computer. Response: It won’t start. Cut to the next five minutes of relaying conversation between the IT guy and my supervisor, who was sitting there eating dinner while I tried to figure out a problem on a computer that’s NOT EVEN MINE.

I only have an hour left in my shift, but who knows what else can happen. It’s a battlefield around here and I’m apparently surrounded by land mines.

Sunday, Unraveling

31 Jan

Today has not been a good day. I had high hopes–I’m finally off the overnight, which is something I had practically begged my boss to do for me. But basically, I have no idea what I’m doing. Used to the efficient order of my typical overnight shift, working during the day has introduced a whole new set of challenges–blinking phone lines, new people, breaking news–all of which are leaving me a little frazzled.

My complete paranoia of feeling incompetent at work has put my ego on high alert. Maybe I’m just self-absorbed, but I feel the judgement of my coworkers boring into my half-awake brain. Obviously I don’t expect to be perfect at everything, right? Um…well…ahem…ok, maybe I do.

It’s not exactly a secret that I tend to put a lot of unnecessary pressure on myself and set high expectations over things that aren’t always worth it. So the second something starts to slip, I immediately imagine myself unemployed and unemployable. Can’t answer the phone correctly? My future in journalism is over.

I think I need to get a grip. No, I know I need to get a grip. Despite the muddled mess I seem to be making of my life right now, the one thing that’s crystal clear is that I need to relax.  Come on, me–a Sunday afternoon is not going to make or break my entire career. Or is it?

The rational side of me is going to get a coffee. The irrational side will be spending the rest of the night memorizing international phone codes.  It’s a process people.

Retail Therapy

30 Jan

I just got my schedule for next week–I’m on it a whopping 2 days! This means I’m making NO MONEY, just like every single week for the past month. This is a problem, because I’m having the urge to spend. And buy stuff I don’t really need. And buy more stuff just because.

This is pretty rare for me. I really don’t like to shop unless I have something in mind and once I get to the mall, I want to leave it ASAP. It’s crowded, people are oblivious, and I rarely find anything I actually want to buy. Plus, I only ever shop the clearance rack, so it takes a lot of work to find anything. But lately, I’ve been in a constant mood to shop ’til I drop!

So in an attempt to squelch my eager debit card, I bought this AWESOME pair of boots–a cross between a riding and motorcycle boot, black, knee-length and PERFECT. This was actually more of a need than a want–I got caught wearing ballet flats in the middle of the worst snow storm of the season and they were deeply on sale. But what a rush! I zipped those puppies up and stomped my way through the snow, turning heads and basically killing it. It’s amazing how something new can totally affect your mood–I walked out of the store feeling better than I had in days! Plus, the compliments I was getting elevated my attitude even more!

Which lead me to pair of boots #2.

Pair of boots #2 are grey suede, ankle length, and PERFECT.  These were definitely more of a want, but were combined with the need to buy something else. I went into the mall deciding I wasn’t going to leave until I had a bag in my hand, and I found these an hour into my quest, bought them, and promptly left.

But two pairs of shoes have done little to calm my buying appetite. Now that I have an entire uninterrupted week off, I’m furiously searching for travel deals, all 900 seasons of Saved by the Bell and directions to the Mall of America. It needs to be spring NOW before I waste my weekly income on anything else. But considering my weekly income is less than I made AS AN INTERN, is it even worth it to save? In the grand scheme of things, how will my $150 be best spent–with it sitting in the bank, or with me sitting on the beach?

Maybe this is just a bout of cabin fever–so much snow, so little to do. But I think my urge to shop is stemming from a bigger need to just be satisfied with something in my lifeand if that’s another three pairs of shoes, I guess I’ll do what I have to do.

My Parents Went to Miami

29 Jan

So my parents went on vacation this weekend…without my sister and I. What the hell, Mom and Dad. Isn’t the only time you’re supposed to go anywhere is when you can bring us?

But anyway, there’s about 9 billion feet of snow on the ground right now, and it’s supposed to snow consistently throughout the weekend. Looks like I’ll be stuck inside for eternity while my parents live it up at the Fontainebleau. It’s really depressing when you realize your parents lead a more exciting life than you do. They already see their friends way more than I see mine, and they drink a lot more wine.

Now, I wouldn’t say my parents coddle me, but when they’re not around, I’m actually responsible for getting up when my alarm goes off and making my own coffee. Of course, I have several issues with this:

1. I cannot recall A SINGLE TIME IN MY LIFE when I actually get up when my alarm goes off. Usually, my mom comes in and gets me up so I’m not running around like a crazy person with ten minutes to get ready, nothing to wear, and five thousands things to do. Like I did tonight.

2. I cannot make coffee. Every time I try to make coffee, it tastes gross. And I NEED coffee. And because of #1, I didn’t have time to stop and get a better cup, so I choked down the bitter brew and am now shaking at my desk because it was so strong.

So the two things that I’m actually responsible for doing when they’re not around, I suck at. Have I really become this dependent? I recall a time when I lived on my own, got places on time (mostly…) and didn’t need four cups of coffee to function on a normal day. But seven months into living at home, I’m now crippled by the small shreds of responsibility I’m doled out. When did it become so difficult for me to figure out the automatic setting on the coffee maker? I need my mommy!!

O god. What the hell is happening to me?? Please just be the coffee talking, please just be the coffee talking!!

DAMN YOU SPELL CHECK

23 Jan

HOLY MOTHER OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE. I am an idiot.

Tonight, I decided my “big project” was going to be figuring out how to make an email signature. Considering it took me almost an hour to learn how to turn on my “out of office assistant,” I anticipated this being more involved than it actually was. You’re looking at the next IT mastermind, let me tell you…

Anyway, ten minutes later, I was in business, just in time to send out my hourly updates to a group of about 15 people. Badda-bing, badda-boom, email sent, signature signed OMG I SPELLED ASSISTANT WRONG.

WTF, ME?

My immediate reaction:

Honestly, this is pretty inexcusable. Not only did I graduate from a good university with a high GPA, but I MAJORED IN JOURNALISM AND NOW WORK IN THE MEDIA. WHICH MEANS WRITING. WHICH MEANS I SHOULD BE ABLE TO SPELL WORDS LIKE ASSISTANT.

But even worse….someone emailed me to point out my gaffe:

“Not to embarrass you, so please don’t feel bad, but I noticed you misspelled “assistant” in your signature line.”

Ugh, could I be any more embarrassed?! Could I feel any worse?! Never again will I rely on spell-check alone (I say that like relying on my brain is any better…). Of course, I fixed it immediately, and thanked him for pointing it out, but the damage is done!  Please God, just take me now!

I Am Sick of Snow

22 Jan

Winter, please go away.

Gone are the days when I actually look forward to snow. A big storm used to mean no school, chocolate chip cookies, and skiing. Or in college, movies, 3 pm drinking, and trashy tv. But now, snow means checking the weather channel approximately six million times, digging my car out of the park-and-ride at 7 am, digging my car out of my driveway at 11 pm, and grey-hair inducing commutes to and from work. While I have yet to actually witness a silver strand, I know it’s coming. How could it not?!

Yesterday was the third week in a row the east coast got hit with a major storm. The first storm made it impossible for me to get to work, and then impossible to get sleep, since I was obsessing over how my inability to drive my car through unplowed roads would affect my career. Storm number two occurred while I was at work, and my day ended right in the middle of a massive ice storm. It took me double the time to get home, I fishtailed across the highway twice, and generally freaked out that I wouldn’t live to see another day. Storm number three occurred on my day off, where I then spent half of it digging my car out of  six inches of snow, and then another four inches of ice. My back hurts.

My descent into crotchety middle-aged working woman is coming faster than next week’s nor-easter. Now I watch the storm updates with a growing dread over getting to work and what shoes I can wear. Unlike school, which gets cancelled, and internships, which are extremely storm-sensitive, work is non-negotiable. It’s like I’m working for the postal service–“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds,” but we didn’t get mail yesterday, and I’m sitting at work, so what does that say? Plus, I live so far from work that sometimes the snow I get is not the snow work gets. I almost sent photo-documentation when I was stranded from storm number 1, but I didn’t think a photo of me shredding up the slopes would be all that good for my reputation…

Sigh, another lost joy of my pre-working life. Well they say once you have kids, you start re-living the joys of childhood, so perhaps a solution? That’s the way to do it, me. What a perfectly rational idea. Maybe there was something else in the snow I ate this afternoon. Like drugs.

Getting the Giggles: NSFW

21 Jan

I don’t know what got into me, (although I would guess it was the combination of cold pills and cough syrup…) but I had a serious case of the giggles the other night at work. I tend to pride myself on my maturity and professionalism, but right from the start, I could not get my laughter under control! It started after I saw this headline in one of the local papers:

WOMAN ARRESTED AFTER PUNCHING A POLICE HORSE

I mean, come on! Can that get any more hilarious? (Yes.) That would send anyone into hysterics, right? (Wrong.) Ahem, anyway, I tried to share this highly news-worthy gem with my co-worker, but could barely get the words out! I should have closed the tab on my computer, gathered my thoughts and found another, more serious story, but I really wanted to include that in my nightly news note. So for the next 20 MINUTES, I struggled to summarize the two-paragraph story about a woman who is now sitting in jail facing battery charges after hitting a horse on the nosehahahaha. Of course, I finally did it, because I am a professional.

Then, an hour later, that same co-worker was really struggling to stay awake and decided to take a 5-hour energy shot. An hour after that, she was complaining of being hot and feeling sick, so in our 3 am delirium, we both decided to research possible side-effects. Apparently, the drink could cause you to overdose on vitamin B, which in the most extreme–and improbable–cases, could lead to paralysis.

Now obviously, I don’t find paralysis a humorous subject, but sharing the news with her had me once again disintegrating into uncontrollable laughter! And naturally, she didn’t really find that funny at all. “That’s not funny,” she said stonily, before turning back to her work and wiping the sweat from her brow. Well, that certainly straightened me out! Apparently the way to get yourself back on the serious side is to have a superior glare at you disapprovingly after telling her she might never walk again! The thought of losing my job over some cheap paralysis joke (like that hasn’t been done before…) had me scouring the papers for road-side bomb and hostage situation news coverage.

But at the end of the night, that horse slapping story was still a beacon of hilariousness among other depressing news. That’s when I decided I’m officially swearing off cold-remedies before work, and made the editorial decision to not cover anymore rogue horse-slappers in mainstream mediahahahaha. Ok, it’s out of my system, I swear! But come on! The woman was arrested for slapping a horse! Does it get much better than that?