November 20, 2008

You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch

I really do love my job. I get along really well with 98% of my coworkers (except for that one person who felt the need to exclaim "I don't see how you eat that! Ugh!" anytime I brought in sushi or ethnic food; luckily, I don't run into them much anymore). I have good benefits and decent pay. I work in a nice office (sorta, more on that below). I have a flexible schedule. I have a big truck that I don't have to fill up on my dime. My field interests me and keeps me in nature.

That said, there is a lot of frustration and dumb-ass-observing that goes along with my job. I was hired last year, and last week, I was finally given a direct line supervisor. This office was supposed to be staffed and functional four years ago. A state-wide project manager hasn't been in place in two years, and little chance of one for at least 4 more months, if not longer. Due to these two circumstances, I have been pretty much sitting on my hands for over a year. And I drive an hour one way to surf the internet. I have done probably five months worth of real work, and that's stretching it. The office that I've been place in is one room with two other people where we are supposed to have the three office suite down the hall that has actual storage space. The consolidation of three separate region offices has left us with no idea where documents or maps are, and relying on another agency's good graces to store stuff.

Most of this is small stuff I can deal with. But, today, the shit has hit the fan. All annual leave from tomorrow until January 3rd was canceled due to "exigency of public business." Actually, it's due to a poor business plan and poor training and poor follow-up from as far back as five years ago. I understand duty to the taxpayer, but this is excessive. I'm not going into the details, but this reaction is overkill. This doesn't affect me so much, as I have no annual leave, but three of my coworkers have been pole-axed. One guy now has to drive six hours on Thanksgiving Day with his family of five, instead of spending four days with his family. Another has 200 hours of use or lose leave that he can't use, not to mention his non-refundable plane tickets. The third has to deal with several counties of severely morally-depleted employees who are very hard workers and are now being punished for that, not to mention missing out on spending time with his two-year-old daughter. I definitely don't want to be in his shoes.

So yeah, the holiday spirit has leached right out of this office. I've already planned an office lunch for the day before Thanksgiving, now I know I'll have plenty to feed. I'm also planning on trying to bring in cookies and snacks for the guys that will be working ten or twelve hour days. Maybe this won't be as bad as it seems now, but I'm not holding my breath.

I really dislike the top guy in this agency. He is the definition of asshat. Or maybe just a Grinch.

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