The Working Life

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Filed in The Working Life

Just two days ago, I was ready to quit. Things were getting too trivial to handle.

Not 24 hours later, I was given a glimpse of the big picture and my place in it. Awesome.

Whatever made me think what I did 2 days ago?

Actually, I think this way at least once a year (sometimes more), but haven’t acted on it yet. Come July, I will have completed a dozen years with the company.

“What time did you get to work today?”

Filed in The Working Life

If only she’d looked a little worried while riding the lift to the carpark. But she’d so confidently punched the P5 button, while I’d punched P7.

A while later, inside my car, putting together the ZenX for some drive-home music (plug cassette adapter cable into ZenX … switch on ZenX … scroll through playlists … decide what to play … settle on Janis Ian … ), I saw her walking down from P6, looking here and there, probably for her car.

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When the cat’s away …

Filed in The Working Life

Around mid-morning, the department head’s secretary wheeled in a trolley. On it were two big zipped-up bags.

Shortly before lunch, a couple of women showed up. Both were colleagues, but one I’d never seen before. They were soon joined by more female colleagues from other departments. All headed towards the back of the department.

From where I sat at my workstation, I could see some of them, and the garden set (yes, a garden set) where I normally eat my lunch getting piled high with colourful outfits.

The department was being turned into a mid-day street market.

I was miffed. I dislike outsiders coming into our department during lunch time. I especially dislike not being asked beforehand. Because of my lupus, I usually stay in for lunch and often have the place to myself for up to an hour sometimes.

Not today’s lunchtime.

Dang if more women weren’t showing up.

I stayed at my workstation, watching the “street market” .

Towards the end, when most of the visitors had left, the ringleader came out, dressed in one of the outfits. She started to say something, but I’d had enough.

“Don’t do this again …”

“Why not? Boss is away …”

“What if the others talked about this afternoon, and she hears of it?”

(Boss doesn’t like such going-ons in the department; why do you think it’s happening while she’s away?)

As Ms Ringleader still didn’t seem to understand, I tried to make it clearer.

“Think of the image of the department …”

She’s someone relatively senior in the department and she had to have such things spelled out for her?

The waiting is over

Filed in The Working Life

It has been the hottest topic since late July. Colleagues from different departments who hardly know each other and normally not say much more than a hello, were suddenly following their greetings with, “Any news yet?” And the answer would be, “No, not yet.” And if anyone asked me, I’d add, “It doesn’t matter. Whenever it comes out, it’ll be backdated to 1st July, so no worries.”

Last Friday, some of the support staff in my department started whispering, “Eh, such-and-such a department got theirs already, lah.”

This morning, the same support staff came to work looking positively worried. Then, around mid-morning, someone from the HR department came in with a familiar A5-sized brown envelope. A while later, our head of department came out of her room with a stack of white envelopes in her hand, which she proceeded to distribute to each of us. To the Muslim staff she added, “Nah, duit Raya …”

I wasn’t expecting mine. The usual process is for the support staff to receive theirs first, followed by the executive staff’s a month later. This time, probably because it’s SO late, we all got it at the same time.

After which, there were no more worried faces in the department.

What is IT?

Our annual “love letter” from the company, with news about our salary increment and bonus payment.

Pleasant surprise for me?

*nods head enthusiastically*

Writing Breakthrough

Filed in The Working Life, Writing

Writer’s block implies that you’ve come up against a dead end, or a very thick wall, and there is no way through for the writing that you need to do.

For me, writer’s block is more akin to constipation. The words are in me, but they are just not coming out. Or if they are, they are not coming out right. And I’m feeling very uncomfortable because of it.

I’ve spent much of today trying to write a long overdue proposal for work. I haven’t gone out of the house at all – partly cuz it’s been very hot and sunny since about 9:00 a.m. and I’m not supposed to be out in such weather, but I digress.

I’ve spent the day sitting in front of the computer (and letting myself get distracted cuz the computer has been left online since yesterday evening), walking up and down, sitting in front of the telly (hoping for inspiration?), taking short-short naps (in the hope that the entire proposal will come to me in a dream and I’d wake up to transcribe it down?), and staring into space. Despite such un-worklike behaviour, I’d like to think that my brain has been working at processing all the various bits and pieces it has about the paper I have to write.

And now, I think I’ve made a breakthrough.

The words are finally coming together, the sentences flowing from my fingertips and making sense.

For me, the first word, phrase, or sentence has to make sense, and I think what I’ve written so far – about a page or 231 words – is finally making sense.

The proposal will be completed tonight.

Oh yah, I know. Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest. It’s been Sunday for a long time for me – whether it’s really Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday … am I making sense? Yeah, my life is quite messed-up.

Later …