Scheduling Blues & Valentine’s Recap

Well, I’ve been away several days, and it’s been an exciting and busy few days to say the least. I’ll start by saying that on Friday (yes, I’m bypassing Valentine’s for a moment) we had a meeting at work. That’s always a danger. It was even more of a danger because it was with our outbound collections team only instead of the entire call center team.

The meeting began with the management team informing us we’re going to a new schedule. Now while it isn’t pleasant for me, I wasn’t as upset by the changes as some people were. It’s not like I can complain anyway. They do what they want, and I simply do as I’m told, right? Right.

Our current schedule is a Monday-Thursday 9-hour shift and Friday 4-hour shift. You can see why some people were upset. They cherish their 4-hour Fridays. As do I. It’s one of the few days I’m really able to see Fernando, after all, since his crazy schedule as fast food assistant manager keeps him busy on 10-hour shifts five days a week, he ends up taking off Fridays and Saturdays to see me. So we get my half-day Fridays and all day Saturdays and most of Sundays.

If we’re lucky, we’ll see each other at various times during the week. But that hasn’t happened often lately due to our schedules.

Now my schedule will be changing starting in a few short weeks. It’s going from the above to a straight 8-hour Monday-Friday shift. They determined this was the best option to get the most call outs done and get things taken care of in the timeliest manner.

I have no quibbles with leaving an hour earlier. I’m not too chuffed at losing my half-day. I’m just rather tired with all the changes. It’s every other week we’re having a meeting about changing this or that policy. Or perhaps we’re getting an email at least once or twice a week about being able to accept or deny new pieces of information for customers when they apply for different programs. Then there’s the constant change in seating arrangements. I feel like I’m back in high school, moving desks because the teachers disapprove of so-and-so sitting next to so-and-so or whatnot.

In fact…

I had to move my desk to a desk literally not two feet away from where I was sitting. It wasn’t a big deal. They had me move on Thursday. And while I’m not really complaining, I find it amusing that I was moved.

You see, I didn’t ask to be moved.

Evelyn did.

She has severe asthma, and it’s been acting up terribly in our prior seating arrangement next to the supervisor. We were seated directly under a vent that constantly pumped out air (whether warm or cold) that would irritate her asthma and cause her to cough uncontrollably. Honestly, it was an OSHA issue more than anything else. But she was going nuts trying to get over the coughing, and she had requested to be moved to a seat where there was no vent (a seemingly impossible task in our large facility).

She requested to take over the resident “bro-ski’s” seat because he sat in an area that wasn’t as heavily hit by vents. Now “bro-ski” is an okay guy, but he’s not someone I talk to a lot, and I’m not particularly a fan of his. Evelyn took him aside and explained her situation and asked him nicely if he’d consider switching seats with her. His response was, unfortunately, predictable.

He told her in no uncertain terms he would raise cain if she tried to get him to move.

Well, strike one.

Then my supervisor came up to me on Thursday morning after I noticed her speaking to “bro-ski” and asked if I would move. She told me she knew I wasn’t really interested in moving but asked if I’d be willing to. I said I would, end of story. I mean, they’d move me anyway, so I had little choice in the matter.

That afternoon our systems went down completely for about an hour. It was great and glorious. I couldn’t take calls. It was a really beautiful world. And that’s when I moved. I took over another “bro-ski’s” desk who was out sick that day, and that’s when I realized what had happened.

In order to pacify “bro-ski,” they moved me so that his “bromance” with our other “bro-ski” could continue unhindered by distance. And of course, because the “bromance brothers” are the “teacher’s pet” types in the call center, they get pacified in their desires.

I know that’s very sarcastic and all, but you have to understand the call center life is one of those things that is very similar to high school. You have the teacher’s pets who suck up to the supervisors and get what they want. You have the cool kids who band together and get to do special things because they’re cool and they can. And then you have people who don’t really fit and just try to make it without getting in trouble.

There’s more to it than that, but I’ll likely do a separate post about how the call center is just like high school.

In short, I got bumped for the “bromance” duo, and I’m not altogether unhappy, just amused at the irony of favoritism.

In other news: I am hoping and praying for a favorable review of an interview I had Friday afternoon with an amazing company that I’d love to work for. I won’t say much here now, but I had a phone interview with them last Thursday and arranged for an in-person interview with them Friday afternoon. And now it’s a matter of waiting for them to call me this Friday to let me know if I get to go on to an executive interview, the next step in their process. I’ll definitely keep you posted on how that goes! Be wishing me lots of luck!

Finally, I have to say I had an excellent Valentine’s Day with my dear Fernando.

He surprised me big time, and though the women at work were wagering on how many bouquets I’d receive and whether he’d propose or not (to both of which they were disappointed), I was frustrated by the end of the work day. The flowers rolled in, and it was a riot of roses in the office, but none came for me. And what really frustrated me wasn’t the lack of a delivery but my co-workers’ constant jabbing at me about how I hadn’t gotten anything yet and how something much bigger and shinier must be waiting for me at home. (Or as one co-worker put it, I must have a “butt naked man” waiting for me.)

By the time I went home, I was annoyed and ready to call it a night and just go wherever for dinner and not even bother with all the hoopla surrounding Valentines, even though I’d made Fernando a card on Sunday and gotten him chocolate-covered strawberries the day before. So when he showed up at my door dressed nicely with his hands behind his back and told me to pick a hand, I was taken aback and felt annoyed with myself for being annoyed.

He brought me chocolates and a beautiful bouquet of red and pink roses and the sweetest card. I think I liked the card best. Probably because he wrote me the most wonderful note, and I’m nothing if not won over by a few lines of ink on paper. I almost cried but didn’t and instead hugged him and didn’t want to let go to get dinner.

We went to a seafood restaurant here in town and got a delicious meal. I got a nice fish that wasn’t too fishy tasting with a lemon caper sauce and au gratin potatoes. He got filet mignon and lobster and steamed broccoli. And it was all just lovely. I thoroughly enjoyed my Valentine’s Day with my first Valentine.

I’m not going to make a huge deal out of it, but he was incredibly sweet, and I adored him for it. And now here’s hoping all the good vibes from Valentine’s allowed my interview Friday to push me toward the potential for a new and better job in a company that seems to be really amazing and, more importantly, cares for its employees and wants them to enjoy coming to work.

What a difference that would make!

We shall see. And I will definitely keep you posted.

– RaeNez


Valentine’s Week, What?

Lo and behold… it is the week of February 14th. While many of my friends will be lamenting their single status and posting the joys of being single while secretly drinking their woes away with liquid courage and indulging in pint after pint of Ben & Jerry’s (the best threesome a girl could wish for) over some fashionably cheesy chick flicks, I’ll be doing… well.. something different.

No, this isn’t the cheesy blog post you were looking for.

Not yet.

That comes later, I can assure you.

I’ll actually, you know, have a Valentine this year.


Fernando isn’t exactly super excited about the prospect, but that’s okay. Guys don’t have to be. Valentine’s Day is traditionally more about the girl, and everyone knows Fernando isn’t the kind of guy who only shows his affection when he has to, like on holidays and birthdays.

He’s insisted all along he won’t be doing anything special for Valentine’s Day simply because he sends me flowers when he feels like it and does special things with me all the time.

He’s the perfect Valentine all the time. Well, that was cheesy. He’s not perfect, but for the purposes of making me feel loved, he is.

That said, since we both work Valentine’s until 6 pm for me and 7 pm for him, we’ll be going to dinner late and relaxing. I told him we didn’t have to do anything fancy. I’m just glad I get to see him because, gosh darnit, I’ve never had a Valentine, and I’m going to celebrate it with him just a little!

Yes, I’m girly. Yes, I’m sentimental. Yes, I want a Valentine, dangit.

So with less than two days to go until I get to see him for Valentine’s, I’m just feeling excited that I’ll get to smile and hug him and be all cutesy and couply. Because, let’s face it, I’ve never, ever, ever had a Valentine in my life.

I’m 20-something-years-old, and this is the first time I’ll have a legit, “I like you,” dinner date Valentine. I’m not going to miss it. I’m going to be super excited after dealing with ridiculous people who can’t be bothered to take any responsibility for themselves because, quite frankly, I don’t care if you are in debt or not. I’m going out with the guy I like when I get off the phone with you, and to heck with your blankety-blank account. In fact, if you’d please go jump off a cliff, things would be so much easier.

Well, maybe I shouldn’t ask people to jump off a cliff.

Though a little sense of personal responsibility wouldn’t go amiss… like, you know, actually acknowledging that you went into debt instead of just claiming it suddenly appeared out of nowhere. Because debt doesn’t appear, and babies aren’t delivered by the stork.

Sorry to kill your fantasies. Santa doesn’t exist either. And the economy is very broken and not looking up despite our fearless (political) leaders trying to convince us it is.

A little reality check for some people is definitely in order. But I suppose I’ll go into that later. Probably tomorrow since I have a very specific someone in mind whose particular brand of denial has reached levels even I’m impressed with.

For now… Valentine’s!

(I’m going to go be sappy and watch Downton Abbey now instead of listening to the President try to convince me he cares about me. Because if he did, he’d, you know, keep his promises and fix the economy so I could get a new job – and yes, this is what I’m talking about with the personal responsibility stuff, people.)

– RaeNez