Wednesday, September 25, 2013

No Sweat.

Dear Sweat Glands,


We've been together a long time. All my life, in fact. That's a long time. I had hoped that, one day, we'd have come to a mutual understanding that would allow us to function together with minimal conflict. Unfortunately this has not been the case. During our time together you have caused me nothing but embarrassment.

While it may be of no concern to you, having to spend the first half hour of my mornings in the office men's room, "toweling" off with handfuls of paper towels is not how I would prefer to begin each workday. Even after that, the telltale pools of sweat on my shirt remain for some time after I am forced to admit defeat and proceed to my desk.

You provide a necessary function, the primary of which is to prevent my body from overheating if I have to exert myself while performing my day-to-day activities. However, I feel you can be a bit overzealous of the performance of your duty, since very little exertion is required on my part for you to spring into action. And when you do spring into action, it cannot be said that you do not give it your full effort. While this level of performance is admirable in most other fields, it is not a necessary nor appreciated effort from you. I think you should ease on the pace a bit.

I know there are issues that make your job harder. For one, we live in the tropics. I know. It's hot. I cannot help this fact. But we were born here and have always lived here, so I don't understand why you are not more used to the conditions. As such, I fail to see why you would think the heat is a good excuse for you to act up the way you do.

You should know that I don't like exerting myself. This is mostly because of you and your zeal, since I actually consider myself an active person. Unfortunately, having to exert myself can't always be helped, so if I have to walk a little faster, or choose the first form of transportation - even if it isn't air conditioned - I would like to think that you would be understanding about this. But let's be honest with each other, this isn't the case, is it?

There is also the fact that I am somewhat overweight. I accept the blame for this but, again, this is something that you should be used to, since, with the exception of a few short years during my late teens, I have always been overweight. Still, this is something I can fix and have been working on. In truth, we can both agree that my weight issue has improved significantly in recent years, so while you get some leeway for this, it isn't much.

Through all this I cannot help but notice that the vast majority of individuals I encounter every day are not usually afflicted in the same way. Overweight people, people who are in a hurry, people who take public transportation or any combination of these. Not to mention that, like me, all of these people I meet live here in the tropics and have to endure the climate. This leads me to believe that the problem lies in your aforementioned overzealousness.

Is it personal? Have I wronged you in some way that has prompted you to be my lifelong enemy? Or are you just an asshole? Whatever your motivations may be, know now that I am hereby putting you on notice. I am in a new setting, among new people and I will not be the "sweaty guy" here too. This is why I have chosen to write to you today. I am no longer willing to be a hapless victim of your tireless assault. Know that, no matter how long it takes, no matter what steps I have to take, I will find a way to end your reign of terror.


Getting real tired of your shit,


Vinny.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Lovers' Spats.

Couples fight sometimes. There's no avoiding it. Put two or more people in close proximity for long enough and there are bound to be disagreements. It's human nature, I guess. Add emotional attachment into the mix and things become a whole lot more volatile.

Sometimes fights are a result of some huge issue. Cheating, abuse, etc. Relationships can end, lawyers can get involved... maybe even the police. Then again, sometimes those fights can be for minor, silly issues that no rational thinking person should get upset over.

Case in point, the age old toilet seat debate. Men just don't get it. We go in, we raise the seat, we do our business. We don't complain about why the seat was down. We have to raise it or there's most likely a mess to clean up afterwards. We don't want that, you don't want that. Even if we accidentally forget to lift the seat, most guys are okay with cleaning up after themselves. At least I am. Regardless, we don't complain.

Which woman has ever heard, "Dammit! Why is the seat down?! You know I don't always have time to look first! Now I have to clean this up..."

Answer: None!

Unfortunately, as we all know, it isn't the same the other way around. Women are not expected to keep the position of the seat in mind. In fact, the mere suggestion that she look before she... sit is considered ludicrous. As such, we men have learned to accept the role of toilet seat monitor.

But (let's all say it together this time) I digress. The fact is, this just one of many issues that, when thought about outside the context of a relationship, is absolutely insane to get worked up over.

That's the power romantic involvement has over us. When you're in love, they say you feel like a kid again. And it's true. In fact, it's obvious from the way love makes you behave. Fighting with someone you love is just a prime example.

In what other scenario can you call another adult names, yell, make faces and cry? At work? Pouting is generally not going to earn you much sympathy from your boss. With friends? Maybe in some cases, but you probably won't have too many friends who are willing to stick around for too long if you got offended and acted up if they didn't always "consider your feelings".

Relationships, the serious ones anyway, allow you to get away with all this and still expect the other person to make it up to you, if they're wrong (usually), or make you feel better. I'm sure most of us who are or have been romantically involved can remember being told we were acting like a child during a fight with the person we are/were involved with. Truth is we probably were. That's just how relationships go.

Let's face it. The whole idea of "mature" works great when it comes to getting along with coworkers, paying your bills and planning your retirement. When it comes to that person we share a bed with, we're all one comment taken the wrong way (or just one raised toilet seat) away from unleashing that bratty 5-year-old we keep locked inside.

Makes me wonder when exactly we start doing this growing up I hear people talk about.

You know who's a great example of this? This woman I wrote about today on Sprocket Ink.
She was mad at her husband, she reacted by letting rational thought take a back seat, she's in a lot of trouble now. There was a link, but the site is gone now.

Friday, September 20, 2013

This Isn't Goodbye... Okay, Yeah, It Totally Is Goodbye.

[UPDATE: I'm not quitting the blog!!! Sorry for the scare.]

Bigman,

While it may be the usual opening for these types of letters to say, "...it is with much regret...blah, blah, blah..." I won't start off that way. That way is corny. Cliché, even. Besides, in the case of this letter, that opening would also be dishonest, since I do not feel "much regret". Actually, I feel no regret whatsoever, if I'm to be completely honest.

I have learned a few things during my time at TinyCo. The main thing I learned is how to hold my peace and not complain about my job all over the internet (only one or two places) and especially here on the blog. I knew I was a patient man before we crossed paths, but you, sir, have helped me to take that patience to a near superhuman level. For that, I thank you.

Aside from learning about myself, I've come to learn quite a bit about you as well, especially in the last few weeks. I say especially within recent weeks because most of the staff, in fact, ALL of them are extremely frustrated right now. Since you refused to face them and left that up to me, I was able to learn quite a bit. Did you know that angry people aren't very good at keeping secrets about the person they are angry at? It's true! You should know that, collectively, they know enough about you to get you in a lot of trouble.

Friendly advice: You may want to stop ignoring their threats and make nice, really quick.

I can't even begin to express what I feel about the things that I have been told. Combined with what I already know from our interactions, I can safely say that you have left me close to speechless. If you truly knew me, you'd know what an accomplishment that is.

Bravo, sir!

I have chosen to refrain from name calling, but if I hadn't, "most despicable human being I've ever met" comes to mind. It isn't the first thing that comes to mind, mind you, but it's the only option that doesn't have the words "evil motherfucking bastard" or a similar variation. That would be crass and I won't to be crass...

At least, not today.

Anyway, the long and short of it all is that this is the end of the road for us. In the end, I choose to leave quietly and not give you a piece of my mind as I was tempted to do. Truth be told, as satisfying as it would have been, I realize it would be wasted on you anyway, since, in your own mind, you have done and can do no wrong. As such, I won't waste my time being blunt and direct about how I feel.

For that, I have the lovely Diane...

Well put, Diane. There's nothing more I can really add to that.

Later, Bigman. So long, TinyCo. It's been real.

Vinny.
********

Now that that's over with, go read what I wrote on Sprocket Ink.  There was a link, but the site is gone now.
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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I Forgot How To Vinny!

I sit here, staring at the annoying blinking cursor on my screen, thinking to myself...

".  .  ."

That's how bad it is. I'm at the point where I can't even form a thought. I know I'm supposed to do something with these keys in front of me. The ones with the little letters on them. I've used them before, you see. With these "keys", as they're called, I've created words, sentences, even entire paragraphs. I even managed to string all of these words into things that almost make sense. But for some reason, I can't make the keys go. Then it hit me. Maybe...
What if, right now, there's some evil mad scientist out there with my blogginess in a jar on his desk, snickering maniacally as he initiates the next phase of his evil plot? Maybe I should do something about this. You're supposed to spring into action when evil geniuses steal your shit, right? I wonder if Mrs. C is up to doing a helicopter chase scene in a bikini...
Okay maybe not helicopters. She's terrified of heights, after all (which is probably why she refused to get any taller).

BA-DUM-TSS!

But, as I so often do, I digress. Prose! Yes. That's what I think it's called. Not poetry. I suck at that. I did try to write a song once, back before anyone knew I existed. Never trying that again.

You're welcome.

Again, I digress. Tomorrow this blog turns three - believe it or not - and I have no clue what I should do about it. Maybe it's best I just let it go by quietly and ignore it, like my birthday. Oh... yeah... I forgot to mention that. I decided to stop celebrating my birthday as of this year. I have my reasons. I won't bore you with them.

You're welcome again.

So where was I? Oh yeah! Not being able to write. That can't be right! I mean, I'm writing right now, am I not? True, this post is totally random and I'm basically spewing the first thing that pops into my head. But, still, these are words, sentences and paragraphs, so I guess there's still something resembling my mojo at play.

So what does that evil dude have in his jar? Probably best I don't ask.

Besides, it's not like I haven't been writing. I posted stuff just a few days ago. Boring (at least in my opinion), run-of-the-mill updates mostly, but I wrote stuff. Those still count, right? Exactly!

Maybe I'm just bored. Yeah, that could be it. I said before that it's hard to find things to write about when you're cooped up alone in an empty office all day (which, thankfully, won't be for much longer).

Plus there's my post on Sprocket Ink. I wrote that and the words seem to make sense (as far as I can tell), so that debunks the whole writer's block excuse too. Actually, that post is really the reason I gathered you all here today.
I can't believe none of you ever told me my "segue" toon wasn't wearing any pants before now!
I suppose I could have just said, "Hey! Click this link (there was a link, but the site is gone now) and check out my post over at Sprocket," and spared you all of this.

But where's the fun in that?

Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Six Month Curse.

I used to be pretty steady when it came to holding down a job. I was in banking for a little over five years, before that I was a customs clerk for ten years.  Seven with one company and three with another one (the place where I met Mrs. C) before that.

When I left the bank, though, it was right after the global economic downturn hit and since then I've been experiencing what I call the six month curse. I call it that because after the bank, the longest I could hold down a job for was six months before being unemployed again.

It happened with Soul Suck International - A division of the Ninth Circle. This is where I worked when I first joined the blogosphere. To be honest, I was actually there for more than six months. In total. But it was broken up into bite-sized portions. First I temped there for three months, was unemployed for two and was hired for the same position I temped for the first time after the original employee I filled in for left.

After a few months more of unemployment came The Paper. I was actually a reporter. My dream job!
There were some issues, but I can safely say I loved that job. I was going out on assignments, seeing places I might never have visited if not for that job. I even sent to the beach to ogle bikini-clad women interview the after Carnival crowd. Plus, I also got to interview people all walks of life from suspected criminals, corporate heads, to politicians (actually, maybe those "walks" aren't so different). Sadly, they weren't ready to commit to an unseasoned reporter and sent me packing soon after my six-month probation was up.

This time, unemployment lasted longer. A whole lot longer! I was home for nine months and was feeling pretty low. Not as bad as when the bank let me go, but close enough. Then came my current employer... TinyCo. The company I had to swear not to complain about on my blog so I end up posting countless obscenity-laced rants at least twice-no-three times daily.

Now, just six and a half months after getting employed with TinyCo it appears my six-month streak is still going strong. On Friday I found out my time there was coming to an end. Oddly, it isn't because the company crumbled like the house of cards that it is (the fact that it hasn't already really surprises me). No, this time it was from something totally different than any other reason I'd left those other jobs.

I... I...

I got a better job...

HAPPY DANCE TIME!!!
source: ME! I made this!
Oh yeah!

A while back I mentioned some good news on the horizon and this is it. To be honest I had actually almost given up since I interviewed for this job about two months ago. Sometimes horizons are further away than you think. Still there was hope. I had signs I made it successfully past the interview, but nothing solid.

Just so you know, it's a nice, comfy, boring, clerical gig in a government office. It doesn't pay as well as banking, but it's a higher salary than any of the other places I've worked since leaving the bank. Best of all, I start with a one-year, renewable contract (renewable as long as I don't screw up royally). No more of that six month bullshit!

Coincidentally, would you believe two days before I got the call that I was confirmed, my wife ran into the head of HR at The Paper and he told her they'd considering taking me back?

Life is funny sometimes.

All I had to do was call him and set a up meeting. I was hesitant, but with things going the way they were, I did end up calling the next day. After two failed attempts (both times he was too busy to talk to me), I was starting to feel like things hadn't changed there as much as he had hinted to Mrs. C when they initially spoke.

I actually planned to give it one more try the day after that, but before I got a chance, I got a call. The call! Needless to say, I didn't bother trying him back. As much as I love journalism, I'm willing to wait a bit longer. My GPA took a hard hit because of the demands of the job, so I'll finish school first, then try again.

So, this is where things have come to an end with us, TinyCo. We were doomed from the start and we both knew it. As for my ex-employer, The Paper, sorry, but it looks like we won't be rekindling the flame after all. At least not right now.