chemaccino good, but not good for you

Thursday, August 28, 2003
I Am the H-Dog, goo goo goo joob
Yo, yo, yo, G's, I meant to mention:
My main task at this current assignment is to act as the Accountz Reeceevable department. This means that I call up companies that haven't paid the invoices this company sent them, and I try to get them to pay. So far, my strategy has been to act like maybe they didn't get a copy of the invoice the first time around? Oh, should I send you another copy? Oh, sure, would you like it faxed or emailed? That's right, it's totally believable that you just aren't getting half the bills we send you.
Then there are the places where I keep getting voicemail. These people will now be getting a phone call from me every single day I am in this office until I get the money.

So don't fuck with this J-Dog Daddy Mack Mack Daddy Comin' Out Your Ass Badass, 'cause if you do I be comin' after you like pastrami on rye to whip your muthafukin' sorry ass.

I just don't have much to write about. I DO have tons of mosquito bites from some work I did in NH earlier this week. I'm pretty sure I'm tempting some West Nile fate. So itchy....
I've discovered, though, that the bites heal much much faster if you DON'T scratch. I had one I just indulged in on my ankle, really scratched to great relief (and bleeding). But that was a week ago, and its still itches from time to time. Ones that get dabbed with Benadryl cream instead stop itching much sooner. Let this be a lesson.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003
Urban Jungle Fauna
The building I'm working in has two floors, with a total of 6 suites of companies. The entryway and staircase in the center of the building is carpeted with a pattern of olive-and-blue stripe/dashes on beige. Just your basic industrial, stain-hiding carpeting.

Oh, but it hides more than just stains! This morning, on my way in, I noticed a dark spot on the carpet, one most people wouldn't notice, I guess, but this wasn't a stain. It was a cricket. Or, at least, a large, olive-and-brown insect that looked like what I would imagine a cricket to be. To help you imagine my surprise at finding this in my building, camoflaged in the hall carpet, I looked for a picture of it online.
I had no idea how much I don't like insects until I sifted through dozens of photos of close-ups. Anyway, it turns out what I saw is more likely a grasshopper.
These two photos come close to what I saw: This one and this one.

Of course, there's still the question of why there was a grasshopper in the building.
The world may never know.

There is NO white-out, or correction fluid products of any kind in this office. I am reduced to cutting up name badge stickers to suit my purpose.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003
Little. Yellow. Taxing. Lame-o.
A Thousand Petty Gripes

I am being too efficient for my own good. If he realizes that I've called all the 90+ overdue companies already, well, there's just not so much to be done. And he'll either not want me in for as long today or he'll decide that I ought to conquer some horrible project like inventory-ing the random equipment in the back of the office supply room. So. I have four phone calls, and four hours in which to make them. Taxing.

I had this terrific purple ballpoint pen that I had been using for absolutely everything, and it's gone missing. It wasn't exactly terrific, but it was purple, and the company logo is purple, so it made me feel all on-mission and up-with-company when I used it. I would prefer a Uniball Roller, but they don't come in purple. I'd like a full time job, too, which is less likely to happen than the production of purple Uniball Roller pens. Anyway, so I'm sad the pen is gone. I did find some green ballpoints, which is an exciting new color, but the ink color is really weak. Lame-o.

Ugh, I tried the coffee here yesterday. Stale. I'll stick to the Diet Coke, thank you, even though whenever I take one I feel like I shouldn't be taking one and I try not to take one if anyone's around, even though I'm pretty sure they're fair game.

Monday, August 18, 2003
One thing that holds true for almost every temping gig is that the keyboard (and sometimes the phone keypad) is disgustingly filthy. I mean, with finger-grime on the keys, and years of dust, dirt and hair in the nether regions. The sad truth is, most people don't even notice when their keyboards get so filthy -- look down right now... am I right, or what? I'm not germ phobic, but come flu season, I stick to my own equipment and wipe everything down periodically. A wet paper towel with a little dish or hand soap is enough to conquer keyboard finger grime. Also, try taking a keyboard, turning it upside down, and shaking it. If you've ever eaten a croissant at your desk, this technique will bear much fruit. And by "fruit", I mean "crumbs". Lastly, the keyboard nether regions can be cleaned with a business card and a paperclip. The business card can zamboni all the crap as it goes across between the rows of keys, and the paper clip can be bent to get stuff stuck just under the keys as well.

To learn more about keyboard cleaning, go rent the movie Gattaca.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003
Sure, the work is boring, but when it comes to office temp work, it's not so much about the tasks (which are always boring) as it is about what the office has to offer. It's like renting a hotel room for a few nights instead of buying a house: it's all about the goods and services.
Food and Beverages:
Coffee: There's a drip coffeemaker in the little kitchen area, and I don't know who makes the coffee or cleans it up, and I fear that before long, it will be me. I also don't know what kind of coffee is made. I'm avoiding it altogether - in part, because there are no disposable mugs, and I would then have to do dishes, were I to have some of this coffee. It sure isn't k-cup, which is sad, because the other place I interviewed had k-cup.
Soda: Free Diet Coke! This, I think, makes up for the imperfect coffee situation.
Food: No free food. Unless someone brings stuff in, I guess, so we'll have to see how often that happens.
Office Supplies:
To most folks, this probably seems unimportant, but when your entire job has to do with wielding these supplies and tools, they become crucial.
Stapler: desktop swingline, hard to hold but so far OK.
Stapler remover: A++! My favorite kind! Shaped like a pen but with a tip that slides under the staple. Also has the little pusher-outer device, and, apparently, a magnet in the opposite end, which I suspect is for staple-corpse cleanup. Can't wait to get a chance to go to town with this baby.
Envelope sealer: foam sponge in a dish. Not the sweet rollerball my last place had. But it's better than tongue.
Mouse: Hooray, the scroller on it works. So does the rest of it.
Computer: 'salright, but wish it had a sound card so I could have a bit of background music.
Keyboard: has a half-size backspace key, which blows. Also, I'm getting tons of typos as I type - don't know if it's because I'm rusty or if it's because of the keyboard or the way it's in the corner of the desk where it's hard to reach because the arms of the chair hold me back.
Chair: OK not great. Hard to roll on this carpet.

So, just finished meeting with boss regarding the day's tasks around the office (ordering from Staples, calling BlueCross stuff) and I could NOT stop yawning. This doesn't seem to me to be any kind of major problem, except that HE thought it was. "Yawning already?"
I tried to explain that it's the air conditioning. But in truth, it's more likely my work area's way-too-romantic lighting scheme that makes me feel like I'm working in December, 5pm.
Oh, or maybe it's that the work is boring.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003
ooooo, someone just walked by (bathroom-bound?) and struck up a conversation with me. I mentioned how it's so quiet, and he said that people do tend to be quiet and do their own thing. I observed that there's a lot of space in the office, and he said that there used to be a lot more people working here. Now there is some juicy info. Layoffs? Flak from the recent buyout buyback?
What intrigue.

I'm temping today!
And blogging!
I ended up interviewing with two different companies for part-time temporary work, and one of them decided they wanted me (the other hasn't made any decision, so the can screw.) It's been a rough first day, because the bossman has ALL this stuff he wants me to get done eventually, but he kind of put it all to me all at once and wasn't very clear about what was prioritized, etc. It stressed me out to have to try to figure out what he wants and get done what I think he wants done. It's a really small company, and I sit at the Receptionist desk, but it's SUCH a small company that nobody ever walks in to receive or anything and as I sit here, the only sound I hear besides my typing is the trickling sound from the aquarium around the corner. I don't see ANY people (there are only about 7 around the office, anyway) except when they walk by on their way to the bathroom or to leave. Maybe if I can get speakers, they'd let me kick out some tunes?