2004-04-11, 10:57 p.m.
Update for the past few days:
Working at the Craft Center the first night was fine and dandy. Classes don't actually start for the first two weeks, so we didn't have much to do beyond eat, check out tools to the 3 or 4 people actually around, and clean the rooms. Much to my relief, I don't really have to worry about cleaning the ceramics or wood labs because there are people around who like to do those, so that's 2 out of the 3 that intimidate me and the two that I know the least about. Heck, we actually got out right at 10. My manager is a cool chick who doesn't like to cook either, as does one other person on shift, so that's a happy. I suspect someone told the manager that we had to do SOME kind of communal food-sharing experience, as I found out when I got there that we do have to do some kind of dessert potluck. Oh well, that's not as bad. Next time I go, I'm bringing stuff to do- I mostly sat around reading "Undead and Unwed," which Jess likened to "Buffy the Vampire." Hilarious.
Went out novel-writing with Jess on Thursday and I finally got around to starting rewriting the first chapter. Rewriting is a lot harder than just blurting out crap for NaNo, because suddenly The Fear comes on and I started feeling like I had to write perfectly this go-around for publication or whatever. I'm not sure how to start it out with a bang, exactly. I doubt I'll have much time to do it without these weekly things given my schedule, but I think I'll need to be forced into it.
On Friday, I had a career counseling appointment because I'd wanted to take the second level of the Myers-Briggs test, and they required that you use an appointment to get the results. As usual, my counselor and I had to get in some jewelry gossip first. Too bad we can't just get together and talk shop about that sometime... anyway, I'd highly recommend taking the second part of the test, should you ever have the opportunity to do so. It gets into a lot more clarification of things.
The way I hop back and forth between results is bizarre: first time I took it as a kid, INFP. Second time, I got exactly between I and E and NFP again. Last time I took step 1 I came out INFJ, and for step 2 I came out ENFP. Go figure. I had a whopping 1 question leaning me in an extrovert direction, heh, and slight to moderate preferences in N, F, and P. I'll get into the results so you can kind of see how it goes.
On the E/I part of the test, they compare which you prefer: initiating vs. receiving, expressive vs. contained, gregarious vs. intimate, active vs. reflective, and enthusiastic vs. quiet. I had one point in the "midzone" (midzone is if you had one point more on one side than the other!) for receiving and the rest was more preferring expression, gregariousness, activity, and enthusiasm. I got that because I am not into initiating conversations and introducing people, but will respond when talked to- that's right. Otherwise, I tend to babble a lot, am fine hanging out with people and join a lot of clubs, don't have close friends, and like excitement. Though I'd disagree with the "active" assignment (I only got 2 on that) because active means that I'd like to talk face-to-face more than writing e-mail, hah.
On the S/N section of the test, it tests preferences for concrete vs. abstract, realistic vs. imaginative, practical vs. conceptual, experiential vs. theoretical, and traditional vs. original. I ended up pretty strongly on the N side of everything, except for ending in the midzone of realistic/imaginative (got an imaginative). I make mental leaps and brainstorm a lot, like to look for new ideas, but don't go for anything far-fetched, like to learn and get ideas, and like to be original, duh.
On the T/F section, I got more varied results. They check logical vs. empathic, reasonable vs. compassionate, questioning vs. accommodating, critical vs. accepting, and tough vs. tender. I got in the midzone with preferences for empathetic and compassionate on the F side, and got in the midzone with a preference for being critical on the T side. I got a 2 in questioning as opposed to accommodating, which surprised me, and got a full-on high score in being tender. I didn't disagree with most of that, but I was all, "uh, I'm very accommodating. I hate fights, I'll do anything to not have fights." The blurb for questioners says stuff like "take a mild, agreeable approach when you don't have a strong investment in the issue" (well, that's true), "are typically tactful but can be skeptical, confrontational, and outspoken," and "may find that your questions are sometimes misinterpreted as oppositional and contentious." Ack. My counselor was all, "well, you do ask a lot of questions and you definitely HAVE opinions," and I said, "yeah, but it's not a good idea to SAY your opinions in my family, so I shut up." She said, "Well, how much of that is naturally you and how much of that is what you learned how to do?" Good point. She said that kind of result often came out with sarcastic people, that they'd be drastically different in the one area, and that at my age I've spent more time operating within the family than without it, so I may get more fight-y in my old age. Ugh, I dearly hope not.
On the J/P section (which as you might recall, I Had Issues with last Friday), they check systematic vs. casual, planful vs. open-ended, early starting vs. pressure-prompted, scheduled vs. spontaneous, and methodical vs. emergent (adaptable, plunges right in). I had strong preferences for being casual, spontaneous, and emergent, but I had zero preference whatsoever for being an early starter OR pressure-prompted, and had a fairly strong preference for being planful. Well, that makes more sense- I'm okay with having to schedule things if and when I have to- it's kind of stifling, but not enough to really bother me. I also tend to work off and on on projects. And the thing I liked was clarifying the "planning" thing- in conversation with the counselor, I realized that I'm fine with scheduling things when I have to, but I hate daily routines, every-day-at-the-same-time crap. I can never keep a daily schedule on my own without having some kind of class prompting it, and I never "get in a daily habit" for doing ANYTHING. Well, no wonder none of my "I'm going to read tarot/get exercise/write on the novel every single day" things work, it drives me batshit! Dunno how to get around that, though...
After all of that (which took a lot longer than I thought), I thought I'd ask her about this networking thing. She'd held this "career strategies for turbulent times" workshop on Tuesday that I'd gone to, where she was talking about stuff like having a five-year plan, having plans A, B, and C for when things go wrong, and coming up with a network of contacts. True to the "I can't plan anything longterm" thing about myself, I said I couldn't make a plan past about three months in advance because then things would end up drastically changing on me. (For example, I'm so glad I didn't look into getting tickets to Bobby McFerrin in April the way Dave wanted me to in November. Hah.) She said, "Okay, well, try making a 3-month plan, or stretching it to 5 months." Hee. I was also baffled by the networking thing, so I asked about that and said I wasn't going to get up the nerve to ask strangers to tell me about their jobs. She wrote down the names of a few people she knew for me, but...I dunno. She asked if I wanted another appointment (you're only allowed 3 a year) and said she could try asking about getting me a fourth if I needed it. I said yes, but I don't know when that would go on.
I did come up with plans A and B- A being stay in this job and learn new skills until the job runs out, and B, if/when I end up unemployed again, looking for both artsy and secretarial jobs. I told her that it seemed like the artsy jobs I loved didn't have any security or good pay, and she said that's every job these days. I'm all "true, but office jobs are one of the few areas on an upswing and arts definitely are NOT, so I need to stick with boring jobs because I refuse to jump to a job that makes me happy and then I get laid off in three months and can't get another job for a year." She was all, you're being a bit black and white about it, but I do think at some point you're going to have to do something you find more interesting. Eeep.
On Saturday, I went to my first dance class. There were three people there, I was the only newbie. The teacher was very helpful- I'm always embarrassed as all hell about being the only completely inflexible person in the room in a dance class. You'd think I'd take a hint from my body that it doesn't want to do a split for anything on earth and go take up social dance instead. (Except I hate that stuff. Any kind of dance that REQUIRES a male partner means that I'll never dance. Fuck that shit.) Instead, he actually worked with me on it, got me tools... whoa. Not bad. It was, as far as I can tell, mostly yoga-ish. I've done yoga before in other classes- a drama class I took made us do yoga, and that lunch workshop thing I went to awhile back- and hated it with a passion. Too slow, too dull, too much emphasis on breathing and making your mind a perfect blank. But this was not any of that, thank the gods. Good thing, because there was a lot of stretching, semi-dance routines of it. Holy shit, the things my body did. I am in Pain today, lemme tell ya. Ankles hurt, legs hurt, butt hurts, gut REALLY hurts, arms kinda hurt... so glad I'm not walking anywhere. I wasn't too sure I'd get my ass home after class. An hour and a half of just warmup! So when we got to the actual cardio stuff, I was all excited...and then surprised at how wiped I was by just doing a few short things across the floor. Go figure, eh?
After that, I went home for a few hours to veg in pain and try to not pass out on the couch before we went to Aunt Susie's. I've had fun- Sian and Jon (my aunt's former au pair and her husband. Yes, Sian is a girl. Yes, their names DO rhyme) are visiting from Wales and we had an amusing dinner conversation about English vs. American pronounciation. You can't really argue with Jon's topping, "Well, we DID invent the language..." The other odd conversational quirk of the weekend was that everyone was obsessed with the last episode of The Apprentice, and going on and on and on about how horrible Omarosa was and how they'd never hire her. About every fifteen minutes, with no segue or relationship to the preceding conversation whatsoever, the "O" bomb would be dropped in. "Yeah, cricket's a really stupid game. It goes on for five days and the last cricket game we went to, only four people were watching." "I would so never hire Omarosa."
We also watched Mona Lisa Smile again, and Alicia and I kept making the same comments at the scary 50's housewife parts. Alicia also brought her baby lop Mabel, who is SOOOOOO CUUUUUUTE. Suddenly I very badly want a baby lop. Mabel is very amusing- she's an orange bunny, which I've never seen before, and she vacillates between calm and crazy. If you pet her ears, she'll be still, but she sniffs around a lot and makes the biggest hops I've ever seen! Talk about BOING BOING! Awwww.
Though I have to admit, as an "Easter" holiday, this one's been a bust. Cassie did what I did for years and didn't admit that she knew about Santa and the Easter Bunny for a long time, but finally fessed up this year. So no Easter egg hunt, no extra candy, hell, nothing even went on with the baskets this year. The rest of us (even older than Cassie) wanted to, but that didn't get much reaction. Mom said later she thought Aunt Susie bought all the stuff for the hunt and then forgot to set it up. Still, it was a bummer.