If you must know, it’s 17% – pii × a warty frog ? e=mc° + ?Ç™, that’s how.

Is actually scheduling time for blogging and housework and project time in my planner just too pocket-protectored, color-coded, anal-retentive? Because It feels like my To Do List always wins. I’m pretty sure he cheats, but I can’t prove it. One of these days I’ll invest in one of those Vegas Casino Security Cameras, but until then I’ll just self-flagellate. I suck ass.

When I checkmark something complete, I feel a tiny little *bing* of accomplishment. It’s like one *bing* in a 50 gallon drum full of *bzzzzzzzzzzt*. Maybe I’m expecting too much of myself. Maybe I’m trying to cram 50 pounds of flour in a 10 pound sack. But every day, no matter how much I did get done, To Do List, with an insolent roll of his eyes, flips me off defiantly. So anyway, I need to do something to totally pwn him and bring him down to his knees. Should I kick him in the nuts? Too harsh? Well, before you answer, consider this. I have items on him that I’ve had for literally years. Like finishing the vector rebuild in illustrator of my linear perspective picture from Drawing I in 2004. And scanning all my film negatives into digital files. And finishing the Sister Scrapbook I started in January 2006. And finishing the toy train montage in photoshop that I started in 2005. Some are just months old, like re-designing my other website with my online portfolio. And tagging the pics on my hard drive with people’s names so I can search easier/faster. And cleaning my basement. And gathering all those hastily scribbled post-its and backs of bills and bar napkins with friends’ new addresses and numbers, and getting my address book updated.

Hey, you remember the Friends & Family plan that MCI had in 1995ish? Just in case you don’t, that’s the long distance calling plan that worked like this: half of America called MCI and gave them the numbers of everyone they knew to get a .0271% discount off their long distance calls to them. The other half took the first half behind the barn and pounded on them a little bit with a weathered 2×4. While America was engaged in mortal combat over telecommunications, MCI telemarketers instantly had in their sales arsenal a tool that has been wielded since the first time Adam spaced off Eve’s birthday; that’s right, pack your bags, we’re goin’ on a guilt trip!

“Hi there, I’m interrupting your dinner tonight to share with you some very exciting news! Cousin Thelma has added you to her Friends & Family list! But, wait… I see here on my computer that you haven’t added her to your list. What on God’s green earth did she ever do to you to make you hate her so venomously? I don’t want to have to call her and tell her how much you apparently despise her very existance… she might cry. You really need to add her to your list or she’s liable to drive off a cliff and you don’t want that on your conscience, do you? Oh, waaait, you don’t have a list because you’re not an MCI customer. But if you’d like to sign up with MCI, you can put her on your list and she might forgive you for the time you put a baby garter snake down her parachute pants at the 1987 Jones Family Reunion! Wow, that was a close call! Get out your phone book, whaddya say?”

Yeah, that was awesome. I just loved being a corporate pawn in MCI’s little game. The customer would call in, recite the number and then invariably they would ask, “Now what’s the discount again?”

And I’d reply, “Can I interest you in a lecture in quantum physics instead? It might be a tad easier to understand.”

And they’d give me a derisive snort and hang up on me.

I loved hang ups. They make your stats look phenomenal. And after all, isn’t that what being an Inbound Customer Care Representative is all about, the stellar stats? Some pie-in-the-sky dreamer once said it was about doing what’s right for the customer, but they were sadly mistaken. I know this because all the supervisors cared about was our numbers. I can even remember one of the goals… AHT (Average Handling Time, i.e. the length of the call) was set to 213 seconds at one point. Man, I took the abuse from the customers for four loooong years; first, three years at MCI then another year at McLeodUSA. I can tell you that now because neither of these companies exist any longer. Well, that, and it’s my blog, and I’ll tell you anything I want to.
Ahhh, that’s back in the days I could still use a phone with an amp. Then I finally gave up my cell phone about a year ago because I was so frickin’ tired of the business-like “Pardon?” or the impatient “What?!” and the hopelessly resigned “Sorry, say again?” and then finally, “Here, just a second; tell Hunky and he’ll tell me.”

It was quite entertaining for me when some unsuspecting victim would ask me, “Hey, can I use your phone real quick?” then dial the number and hold it up to their ear. Two seconds later, they’re holding it at arm’s length and asking, “Wholly Crap, how do you take it off speakerphone?! I think my ear’s bleeding!”

“It’s not on speakerphone.”

[uncomfortable moment]


We kept the phone for emergencies (it’s even bright red!) and (ok, and because those Sprint brother-duckers said they’d charge me a $200 early disconnect fee) the library calls it every time one of my holds become available. I keep forgetting to change the number on their records. Imagine that.

Upon the highly respected recommendation of City Girl (who I am beginning to fall a little bit in love with in a totally non-lesbian sort of way), I picked up gods in Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson, and it was fabulous! I absolutely shiny crimson heart her voice; it’s dry and sarcastic and sassy and all “Girlfren’, pleeeeeeze!” complete with neck roll. I’m looking forward to reading more of her books, but first I’m gonna read Devil in the Details as recommended by Ali. I’ve found that I like finding a cushy chair and reading through my lunchtime.

I’m not so much in love with being back in the rat race. I haven’t seen Hunky for more than five minutes at at time (except, well, duh, sleeping next to each other for a few hours) since last weekend. I miss my Hunkeroo. By the by, if you have a minute, give him a comment to encourage him, because between the part-time job and part-time internship and full-time school, his candle is so burnt at both ends you can’t even hold it without burning your finger off. And also because when I told you it was his birthday, he didn’t get any comments and he tried to act like it was no big deal, but he was bummed out. (bags… guilt trip… *ahem*)

Crap, where was I?! *blinks* *shakes head*

Ah, yes; back in the rat race. I’m working on a PC again for the first time in four years, and then when I get home on my Mac, I Ctrl-V to paste and it doesn’t work. Then halfway through a rip-roaring good tantrum, I sheepishly realize I need to Apple-V. Because it’s like speaking Russian to a Aussie.

And I totally abhor getting up early. That alarm goes off at 4:30am and I sit up, die a little bit, hit snooze once, and doze back off. When it goes off again, I force my lazy ass up outta bed and get ready. Then from 6am-2:30pm I type stuff . At 3, I pick up the boys from school and for the rest of the evening, I keep like a running countdown in my head. Only 4 hours til 9 … Only 2 and a half hours til bed… Crap, it’s 9pm and I forgot to put out clothes and lunch for tomorrow! etc. etc. and on and on and I try to cram as much into the time as possible. I hate it. I don’t get things accomplished like I want to do, so then I beat myself over the head with “How does everyone else do it? Blogging and housework and projects and quality time with the kids? What the hell is wrong with me?” et al.

Which brings us back ’round to…

Maybe I should put it all on my never-ending, cheeky, openly taunting, impertinent To Do list. And then knee him in the nuts.

Rip it, roll it, and punch it, dude. And [in meandering southern drawl] Thank You Again For Your Support.

8 thoughts on “If you must know, it’s 17% – pii × a warty frog ? e=mc° + ?Ç™, that’s how.

  1. No, don’t you remember that one time last week that I saw you? Yeah, we talked without interruption for at least 6.25 minutes? Yeah, I remember that fondly. *sigh*

  2. I (EYE!) will hold down that bastard To Do List and YOU kick him in the nuts. Repeatedly and with pointy, ass-kickin’ heels, Sister!

    I. HATE. HIM.

  3. I stopped calling him a To Do List. I now call it a basic outline. Totally emasculated him. Also? I write it all down, then erase half of it.

  4. Are you, by any chance, someone who has a leeetle bit of energy?

    I could sit in the bleachers and clap at your brain all day as it marches by, high-stepping and waving a flag.


  5. Jocelyn –

    Is your email address perhaps cloaked in camouflage? Just wondered; not trying to be your next blogstalker!

    I do not sit still. Even when I sit down to watch a movie, I must work on latest quilt or have my sketchbook to work on so-and-so’s logo or sort buttons according to the color wheel. Only kidding a little on that last one. 😉

    Hunky takes it all in stride. Just shakes his head a little bit and chuckles at me.

  6. Why do I just feel like you said that in all one breath?

    Just found you – so glad I did!

    Just so you know, everyone else is not doing it. I feel the same way and you know what? Maybe some things on your list don’t really have to get done 🙂

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