2.05.2010

Work Kvetch

My job is, at its most basic level, to solve other people's problems. Most of those problems could almost certainly be solved by the people who have them but it is easier for them to have me do it for them regardless of the fact that I've got a pretty ridiculous tasklist.

And sometimes I feel the ponderous weight of that tasklist on my shoulders and get a little short with people that can't be bothered to try and resolve some of the simple problems they face. Like inserting footers into a Word doc or figuring out that double clicking menus in Word makes them stay open.

But what really starts to grind my gears is when people get testy with me to come and fix their computers that they fucked up by not following clearly written instructions. I.e. don't plug this computer in or start it up unless you are a district technician. Doing so mangles the set up process and means I will have to spend an hour or more undoing your stupid mistake. When those people start getting peevy on me, I have no problem flat out telling them that they screwed up their computer and they have been moved to the absolute bottom of the list. I'll get to your machine in March, maybe.

I get it, I know the district is over-taxed, underfunded and teetering on the brink of total collapse thanks to year after year of budget cuts. What none of these people realize is that I was cut out of the budget as well and have only been able to come back as a contractor without benefits. Which means if I get sick or hurt, my family is in serious, serious trouble.

Which also means that I am and have been in full-on job hunt mode. And when I land another job, I will quit this one without a moment's regret. No wait, that's not quite right. Of the four sites that I regularly work at, one is a massive clusterfuck. The other three are good sites with good people who need help. I will likely try to stay on at two of them because I genuinely like the schools and the people.

But, as it is, I've got far too much work, not enough time and more distractions than is reasonable for someone without ADHD much less me and my fly-away brain.

Some other thoughts. Part of the problem with this school district is that departments tend to think of themselves as standalone entities. That is, there is very little non-codified cooperation between them. If one department has an excess of some technology asset and another department has a a dirth, there is no mechanism or desire for the one to pass along the stuff to the other. And sometimes that surplus turns into junk while it sits in a closet being hoarded somewhere. It drives me nuts when I am told by my director to not even look at another computer when I'm on his time but that I should fix his dept.'s computers when I'm working for other sites.

This system is broken and in the initial stages of collapse. There are too many punchclock employees that could give a shit about anything but getting one day closer to their retirement.

Why yes, yes I am a little tired of the mentality I have to deal with every day I'm here.

But hey, at least there aren't thugs in the parking lot with guns today, that's a plus.
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