Friday, November 21, 2014

More Basic Stuff That I Missed

I thought of something else that should not have taken years to figure out. Although since I was 5, I'll cut myself some slack. I was probably busy trying to be a Math genius and being thwarted by people teaching me all wrong.

Did you ever wonder how songs on radio stations were played? Well, it's obvious - the band would show up at the radio station, play their song and leave and the next band would then come in and play theirs. Band after band coming and going, playing their hits. That's why radio stations played different genres - otherwise bands wouldn't have enough time to drive to all the stations. Later on I realized that was ridiculous - there was no way each band had time to unpack all their equipment and then pack it up again in time for the next band to ensure continuity of songs and no "dead-air". Clearly there was an easier way.

Obviously, the radio station had two rooms set up with musical instruments and equipment for the bands to use.  That way, one band could get ready while the other played.  Simple really once you think it through...

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Laundry and Math

Are you one of those people, like me, that thinks you're relatively intelligent but some simple things just seem to pass you by? Like Math. I am convinced Math is very easy - all forms of Math - I think I just had bad teachers. One of these days, I'll find the button that releases Math and will become an expert. I'll have a business card that just says "I am a Math Expert? Try Me. 1+1=2. See."

The other day I had another one of those encounters that reminds me that even though I am a Math expert*, there are some basic things that don't occur to me immediately. Or even several weeks later. But when they do, it's like all of a sudden, things got a whole lot easier and I can free up my mind from the mundane to work on my Math problems.

So, now that I've moved house and am saving a lot of money in rent, I am dealing with one of those things that comes with saving money in rent. Not my own laundry. I have always had my own laundry, starting with when I lived at home. I threw it down to the bottom of the stairs, it got washed and thrown back up at me. Brilliant. Every house, apartment I've ever lived in has always had the convenience of a washer and dryer, even if I had to share with room mates. But now I have to share one washer and one dryer with 11 other apartments. And I have to pay for the privilege. $1.25 to wash and $1.00 to dry as long as you don't need to dry anything for longer than 44 minutes. Would it have killed them to give us 45?

So far, I've been lucky - no one has ever been using either appliance when I've gone up there and I've chosen pretty random times. So, I've come to the following conclusions - no one else lives here and if they do, they are all a bunch of dirty f*&%ers. It stresses me out quite a lot to do laundry - first I have to go up 2 sets of stairs which means facing the fact at the top that, I am unfit. Since I was doing an excellent job of ignoring that, this is a bit of a slap in the face. I throw my stuff in the machine, ignore the instructions, put the money in, set the timer on my phone for 30 minutes since that appears to be how long it takes. Go back downstairs and anxiously await the beep on my phone. I have a fear of forgetting I have laundry in there and someone taking my clothes out and seeing my knickers. I'm sure they'd be wondering why I'm still washing a pair that looks like there's not much left to them, but let me tell you, they are my favorites and they still have a good couple of quality years in them.

After the first time when I separated my lights and darks (thanks, Mum), I decided to hell with this, it's every man/item for himself and if colors run, then that item clearly was never meant to be. Survival of the fittest - laundry-style. I try and stick to a laundry run, once a week which works well for my clothes. However, I resent paying $1.25 to do my towels. They barely fill up the barrel of the machine and it seems like a waste of time. 


And that's when the penny dropped.  Or the $1.25. Why not throw the dirty towels in the laundry basket and get fresh ones from the pile that took a game of Tetris to try and figure out how to get ALL the towels I own into the cupboard. Then at the end of two weeks...or even more should I feel the need...I can wash all of them. I have enough towels, bathmats, face clothes and hand towels to last through a zombie apocalypse. 

I think this might just work. How did I not see this sooner? Do you see what I mean about basic stuff?  Is it because my head is so full of smart, intelligent stuff? That's probably it. Now all I have to do is figure out the dryer issue...if I wash a bunch of towels in one go, will 44 minutes be long enough to dry them? But wait, I'll use my Math expertise to calculate the weight to heat ratio**...

*Almost. Still looking for the button. Looking for a lot of buttons actually.
**That doesn't sound quite right, possibly I need to take into account the cosine pythagoreal sum value.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Successful Delegation

Yesterday I had some more training. I am just about all trained out for this year. The class was on how to successfully delegate to your employees which I've re-interpreted to mean that I should give them all the work so I can nap. Apparently, the art of successful delegation is giving up control, learning to trust others and not trying to do it all yourself. I can totally do that, I have no problem with any of those things. Except for a little bit. Mostly the bit about giving up control, learning to trust others and not trying to do it all myself. 

So, in an attempt to try something new which I am all about as long as it doesn't upset my current routine or schedule in any way, I decided to practice this. During the first break, I sent an email telling my employee that I was hereby handing everything over to him. If he needs me, I will be under my desk. Napping or building a fort depending on the time of day. Because I have now mastered the act of giving up control, I didn't even wait to see his response, I just mentally empowered him. Hope things are going well. Have awarded myself a PhD in Delegation. Even though I had clearly passed the course, it was still pretty early on in the day so I decided to stick around. I mean lunch was still to come.

Our first exercise was to split into groups and come up with the benefits of delegation from the perspective of the employee, manager and company. We then regrouped to present our findings to everyone. Before doing that though, we had to introduce ourselves, describe our business area and our Super Power. Yes, you read it correctly. Kind of threw me for a loop - I'm used to describing the type of animal I would be. Didn't matter anyway because I appear to have missed the point. Everyone else came up with a super power in relation to their job e.g. master multi-tasker, superior communicator (given the way they communicated this, I have my doubts), future ratings predictor. Not me. My super power is obviously Animal Whisperer. When asked if it applied to just one breed, I went into a long detailed explanation about how cats, dogs and even squirrels appeared to love me. Evidenced by a squirrel running up my leg one day - why I thought it would be a good idea to demonstrate how I got rid of it by shaking my leg vigorously and yelling "get off, get off", is beyond me. Should have gone with invisibility, kind of needed it to kick in about now...

Eventually lunch arrived and I sat down next to a colleague who works out of Denver. Over the turkey meatloaf (which is debatable cos it looked an awful lot like catfood meatloaf) he regaled me with fun tales of his wife's experience with endometriosis. Turkey, catfood, didn't really matter at that point...

Good news is I'm now able to offer a complete package of services for you to buy at an exorbitant rate. Negotiation, delegation, management(ation. Sticking with the theme) and strategization. Communication is extra. I only work half days. And only one day a week. But I bill for a full week. See how good I am? 

They gave us toys again.  I think they're supposed to refocus those of us that are fidgeters.  Worked brilliantly.  Look, I made a ring!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Conversations Overheard By The Dumpster Outside My Bedroom Window

It's not as bad as it sounds.  On the plus side, very easy to get rid of trash.  If it weren't for the bars on the outside of my window, I could probably stand and throw my rubbish directly in the dumpster.  How many of you can do that? Also, when one can't sleep, one hears very interesting things.  On the downside, sometimes when one is sleeping, one gets woken up by conversations that might be interesting during the day, but lose their appeal at 3am.  Also on the downside, my bedroom is right by the dumpster.  So, that's nice.
Night time dumpster.  Cool spot to hang out.  Probably meet my next boyfriend here...
Just a couple of recent conversations to give you some flavor of the area I live in:
  1. Shiiiittt bitch.  Actually a very short conversation.  Not a lot of substance.  Spent quite some time waiting for the second sentence, which never happened.
  2. *"I can tell you're not from LA by the way you're squatting in your heels**". What? First of all, why is she squatting in heels? If I was doing that I'd never get back up, still be there in the morning.  Unless I'd tipped over.  Second of all, is he familiar with squatting styles?  Is there a squatting style city guide out there?  Third of all, is this a criticism or an observation?  Fourth of all, go away.
  3. Dude, look at my bike?  What's wrong with it?  It's not there any more." Got myself a new bike...
  4. I finished my beer.  Me too.  Let's go.  Happy that you're leaving, just not sure why you needed to stand by my dumpster in the first place to have your beer.  Also, umm, you're right next to a dumpster, can you please put your bottles in it?
  5. Are you Jewish. Yeah, you? Yeah. Sweet.  Since I live in a very Jewish Hasidic neighborhood, it probably wasn't too much of a stretch to figure this out.  Just glad they got it right and there was no face-off due to religious differences.  Would have had to move my BBQ out of the way...
*I was tempted to go out and make sure they weren't stealing my BBQ. First sign of dragging metal and I would have popped my dressing gown on and high tailed it out there to have a BBQ tug of war.
**Better not be squatting by my BBQ.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Criistchhhhhssshhtttccchhh. It's hard to write static.

What? It's Monday. It's morning. It's Monday morning. And I haven't even had a cup of tea yet. Besides no one reads this so Mum, I'll send you an email later.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Some Important Points For A Friday

  1. Just to be clear, I only have one foot in the Crazy Camp. The other one is firmly planted in Cat Lady land, so I think we can all agree, I'm cool. Perfectly normal female.
  2. A comment was recently made to me that I have all kinds of walls up when it comes to flirting/engaging with me and that my sarcastic, sardonic, ironic sense of humor was yet another wall. So, I decide to bring the Berlin Wall down a little bit. For the second time in history. Of course as soon as I did that, I realized it was a mistake. I need one of those bank teller walls that comes hurtling down (or up - depending on your bank model) when you press the panic button at the first sign of a transgression. If you're lucky, his fingers might get caught and mangled a little bit...it's a hard lesson but one they will only make once.
  3. Thanksgiving is not next week.  I think someone moved it when I wasn't looking.  I feel let down.  Also, my turkey purchase is a little premature.  Back in the freezer you go.  Neville
  4. I just read a statistic that says that 70% of porn traffic occurs during business hours.  Which leads me to wonder are these people watching in their office or in a pod/cube environment?  Which then leads me to wonder if the porn watching is then causing any reactions...you know what I mean...and how is that manifesting itself?  At this point, I think we're all hoping the porn watchers have an office and let's not even contemplate the lunch room.    Who out there is feeling a need to watch porn at work -  is it that work is not stimulating enough?  Wait, that sounds wrong.  To be clear, I don't mean that your job should "stimulate" you, I just mean keep you distracted from thinking about all the porn you are apparently missing out on.  Unless of course your job is in porn, in which case, go for gold.  Do the porn watchers not have computers at home so they have to do it while at work on the Company laptop?  Did they just need a timeout?  Some stress relief?  Because I find that going and getting a coffee or leaving for the day works wonders. I still have so many questions about this.  Does anyone want to fund me to do a full research project?  I think we all know how good I am at charting and documenting results.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Obsession - Letting Out The Crazy

Let me tell you a little story about the inner workings of a female friend of mine and see if it strikes a chord with any of you*.  

Here's what happened to her recently. You know when you meet someone when you're away for a weekend, you have a great night, you leave it with "let's stay in touch", exchange numbers and become friends on Facebook? She had one of those evenings. Luckily, she wasn't sure that they were a very good match - although it's possible that one evening wasn't enough to determine that but she much prefers to make snap judgements. Obviously much safer and given proximity to one another, very sensible on her part. So, it's good that she didn't get all obsessed over someone that she's sure is a terrible fit for her and doesn't even live where she does. She kept it down to a couple of casual texts, the occasional Facebook comment and then left it at that. 

And then she got irritated that he wasn't being as responsive as she was (and that they hadn't made Thanksgiving plans - yes, this is a normal train of thought). So instead of letting it go, she caved and sent a casual Sunday night text "Hey - how was your weekend?" 

A mere hour and 41 minutes later (she wasn't counting, just happened to notice the time), she received the following response "Call me in one hour." Call me in one hour? What does that mean? Are they spies? Did he forget to add "Let it ring once then hang up and dial back again immediately." Or does it just mean that he would like to chat in an hour when he is free? No, that can't be it. Far too simple. Anyway on the off chance that he did mean that, she did what every normal woman would do - she set the egg timer for one hour. 

A few minutes past the appointed hour (it doesn't do to be too precise), she sent a text to see if he was still awake (a courtesy since they were different time zones). An hour later, it was safe to say, he was not. Luckily she only stayed up for another hour wondering what that meant. So what is the lesson in this for her?  Just leave it alone?  Find a replacement? Learn macrame? Make alternative Thanksgiving plans? Yes.

*Not you men people