Tuesday, February 03, 2004

I can't get rid of that damn ugly orange header

I hate ORANGE. My page looks as happy as a damn little dutch girl lawn ornament. Happy little tulips.

I spent a hour and a half messing with the code... and now my sidebar menu's f'ed up. I couldn't exactly figure out how to change the color. Often, at work I'm asked to fix webpages because I have some understanding of HTML and style sheets, but I was in such a hurry last night and I really don't want to spend my free-time on any sort of coding no matter how Mickey Mouse it is. (You must be thinking- "What a tool!").


What is a slower?
I had a conversation with someone earlier... about the spanking and grating (ranking groups) process they have here... 5% of people in a group get a slower... rating... "S-L-O...W-E-Rrrrrr"... I mean they should really just give these folks a drool bib and a fork with rubber tips. How about a dunce cap or even a yellow shape to wear on our clothes....Then somehow they, the 'slowers' ,disappear? Slowers- sounds a little like Sleestaks! SLOWERS are bad, they are the true "OTHER"! We must rid ourselves of their presence! (I have to laugh every time I run into that term... "other." Because I think of this girl from undergrad in a cultural studies (BS) class I took. How she emphatically explained the difference between 'self' and 'other,' (she used broad mimelike gestures while she was talking), and how terribly bad it was to be an "OTHER" or be perceived to be an "OTHER" because she unfortunately had gone through most of her life as one.

I'm not saying we should make charity cases for anyone who works here. Large groups would never get anything done. However, it's arguable with some groups whether anything gets done because they've beaten the creativity out of some folks with their incessant push to get everyone 'automated' and working efficiently. I should be quiet really... someone might find out. But then I figure if I was living in 1930's Germany I would be the first person to be carted away because I was so damn obvious. Oops, was I making a terribly politically incorrect comparison here? No. I understand where many folks might come out and argue with me for drawing an analogy to the 3rd Reich. However, I'm not passing out flyers am I?

I considered for a moment here that I really need to find another place to be...REALLY. The impending need is growing with each day that passes. I have spent several entries already talking out wanting to leave... I am becoming convinced that staying here will not be so good for my spirit or even my mental health. Working in this suburban wonderland, I feel not so unlike a homosexual attempting to pass for a straight person. Then part of me starts wrangling with my truculence... and my distaste for living amongst 'normals' or people who are at least acting like they are normal.

----You really should stop whining and complaining. Millions of people live like this. They succeed in corporate america... they're happy. You're being a big baby and you should simply suck it up and take it. Live, eat and drink the American Dream...
****What's that? Work my rear off? Then stress out? Develop a binging disorder? Become hideously obese? Go on a low-carb diet? Smell like a stinky gypsie as a result? Loose weight? Buy a new wardrobe accordingly... reinvent myself and my lifestyle... find a husband... buy a ridiculously expensive home... fill it with ridiculously unmanagable children... go into debt... neglect my children because I have to pay for my debt....work off my ass to pay for it?
----You're making quite a big deal out of nothing now. You're really being a freak. Why can't you just be like everyone else? Why can't you just FIT IN? It's really very simple.
****.... because I can't.
----I really don't see why you're being so unreasonable... like I said millions of people live this way... WHY CAN'T YOU?
****Because I don't want to.

When I first started working here I did notice that there was a certain culture of exclusivity fostered by the people who worked here. There was quite a distinction between someone who was permanent vs. contracted. You can understand why some of the lines are there for legal reasons... however, I noticed that people treated contractors quite differently. Some permanent employees even... touted the attitude that they were the best... otherwise they wouldn't be working here. While I don't argue that there are some extremely gifted folks working here and the expectations are very high, somehow (even from the first few weeks I worked here) all of this ridiculous braggadacio about working at *blank* smelled slightly putrid to me. For some folks I sensed that they had never lived outside of the state and belonging to a big big organization and powerful company gave them a sense of power... status. I've seen this when people at other companies... even the large shoe company down the street... when they rant about how they got to be in the same room as P. Knight! I do think that this kind of idolatry or the spirit that companies try to foster in their employees... isn't too unlike the sort of jingoistic sentiment that gets tossed around when countries go to war and people have to follow and believe mindless propaganda.

I am not putting down the hardwork that people do here... or any of the many hours spent by countless corporate employees at other companies. I'm just pointing out, perhaps maybe futilely that there's a sort of mindlessness that exists when you become absorbed in working for a company. Perhaps this is just true of being a part of any organization, group, race, club, you name it. And on top of that there's the mechanism of 'encasement' or inclusion/exclusion that occurs in this sort of competitive environment... you have the people who have it... and you have the people who do not. The people who do not eventually disappear. This is survival of the fittest.

There was a point where I felt that working in this environment was invigorating and rewarding especially coming from the bureaucracy of the public schools. I did feel like I was getting great things accomplished... and I was contributing to efforts where I could feel proud. I'm not really sure why my attitude has deteriorated. It could be that waiting out the terrible economy through the last two years in basically the same job has beaten me down, or perhaps it's because I feel that don't fit in or can find very few people with whom I identify with. I was at one point in the higher rank groups... I'm not really sure where I fit now. I could get really bent out of shape about not being on top, but I'm not really sure that I can give any more... I'm feeling spent.


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