William Matheson (nova_one) wrote,
William Matheson
nova_one

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latest from SMU and work

Holy fuck, this school is a disaster area. The whole place has been gutted and there are exposed network cables and electrical wiring as far as the eye can see. They've cleared out the McNally computer labs (meaning the walls and everything, and the ventilation ducts are hanging from the ceiling) and have brand new (Dell, not HP - for me, the big improvement is the Dell keyboard, which is quiet and easy on my fingers) machines in the Loyola labs already.

They've also replaced the astroturf with something still artificial, but a little more like grass. Next they'll probably tear out and replace the bleachers, which should have been done like five years ago. But better late than never, and this school's infrastructure is on the up-and-up, especially compared to overextended schools like Dalhousie.

I'm just down here waiting for a doctor's appointment. I was going to use the time to officially apply for my Honours Equivalency, but this will have to wait until tomorrow, as the acting department head (This being summer, it changes every week! Imagine being the English secretary and having a new boss every week. She said as much, actually.) won't be in until then. And it's not Dr. A**. Nothing wrong with her, but she was kind of discouraging me from the whole process.

Despite her advice, I've decided that a career in Data Entry is not for me. Since I'm capable of Honours English, I ought to be doing it, and doing so will dramatically increase my eligibility for other programs. Dr. * says I should go to Sterling or another school in the United Kingdom and get my PhD directly after my Honours, without an MA. That's possible? Difficult, I am abundantly sure. But possible. I got a 4.0 on my English courses last year, which told me I ought to be seeking more of a challenge.

More about my job: I kind of feel like I'm being exploited. For instance, there is a time clock, but it doesn't seem to affect me any - I get paid the same ammount even though I ACTUALLY KEY for the entire allotment of my shift, minus breaks (and usually plus a few minutes on the 5:30am side of things). I see other people, permanent people, coming in like two minutes before, then logging out up to three or four minutes before their shift is even over. ARGH. I mean, maybe it's okay for them to do that, and I just don't know that.

Also, somebody, somewhere, decided they had a problem with me rejecting a fuzzy account number as "Invalid Account" instead of "Image Unclear." And they also had a problem with me rejecting another fuzzy account number as "Image Unclear," when they think I ought to have been able to read it. Sure, if I stopped for thirty seconds and killed my keystrokes. Bastards! I'm pretty much at my quota of "client impact errors" now, thanks to some faceless people in Toronto who had to justify their existence at my expense. I don't even get the satisfaction of being confronted personally - it's all through my supervisor. (Just as well, as it would probably come down to a shouting match. Well, I still want even that!) Speaking of...

Last week my supervisor scared the fuck out of me when she came up to my station and pointed to my handwritten timesheet, specifically at a listing of 1 hour, 11 minutes of downtime. "I just want to pick your brain about this. What's this "1:11 (ouch)?" AUGH AUGH My heart did barrel rolls. I frantically searched for an answer - Yes! It was the Oracle error, don't you remember? Everybody had that! You were there!

She then went to the other timesheets and, sure enough, my story was corraborated. So, why'd she pick on me so fast? Probably because I made the mistake of expressing my condolences about the 1:11 they paid me for talking to my officemates, since we couldn't key due to a database error at the Toronto office (the little "(ouch)"). Creativity is not always appreciated. I also wonder what they think of me writing all of my timesheets in green ink, with a pen given to me by the same doctor. They haven't asked me to stop...

Anyway, it could be worse. Today was a pretty good day at work, and I made it through the first three hours by thinking about my plans before resorting to coffee at my break. And I'm paid fairly well, though not nearly as well as the actual staff, even though I think my keystrokes are comparable. They often ask me to stay extra hours now, sometimes longer than any of their staff is staying on a parituclar day, probably because I offer them slightly less keystrokes and experience for a lot less money - so I make more economic sense to them.

This is purely conjecture, of course. I have no strong evidence for any of this. And even if it's true, it doesn't really matter. I should just be glad I'm wanted. Before I swtiched to Fast Key and became less obsessed about each individual item, I was getting less hours.

But do hours even matter? The more I work, the broker I get. Simply put, being a homebody means less expenses. It sucks, but hey, it's cheap. Of course, I'm probably just suffering from all my bureaucratic expenses over the last month or two. And having a phone ((902)-877-WILL, by the way) doesn't help, nor does gas. But I haven't been able to save a red CENT this summer, and I've been working there since May!

May? Has it been that long?

Anyway, I'm taking my degree and moving in another direction, and I hope I don't come off as an insufferable ingrate while doing so. Precious little separates me from anyone else, and in the intellegentia world, I am coffee crud and barely acceptable. Still, this is William Matheson, BA, signing off.
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