Chaos Attraction

A Hell Day

2014-06-06, 2:37 p.m.

Yesterday was a Hell Day at work. It was the last day of pretty much everything due ever. We are unfortunately constantly busy during spring and summer even when it's not the deadline day, but DEAR GOD. I was scheduled to do front counter today (i.e. Dead Day, where it might not be As Bad, theoretically), but first I got moved from my usual time for no reason anyone's told me about, and the new time coincided with a committee meeting I'm on. So when another coworker was all, "Oops, I forgot I have to be out all day tomorrow," I had to switch with her....and she had the last afternoon shift on Hell Day. And then RIGHT AFTER THAT I found out that the guy setting the meeting oopsed it and the meeting was really on Wednesday, not Friday.

I was not happy with this turn of events. But if someone asks you to switch and you don't have any good reason beyond "I don't wanna," you have to switch. I keep reminding myself that she'll be paying back that time in spades next week. And to paraphrase my boss, that's when the criers come in. Oh yeah, and they'll be short on people to answer the phones...but HAH, I shall not be doing that because I am going on vacation (more on that later).

Anyway, it was completely nuts and swarming with people who had to drop out Right This Second. And people who wanted tons of paperwork printed out. I really wished those folks could have waited for a day, but nobody waits here for anything. And I was the only one working the front counter who was allowed to drop people out, so all of that came directly to me AND then I had to take in piles from the other folks on top of that. My boss and a couple of other people said they'd keep an eye on me and fill in if I needed help, just ask them. I was all, "if I'm too busy to take 30 seconds out to run and tell you, I'm not going to be able to do that." Indeed, the only time I was able to get away from the desk enough to ask was when I had bigger disasters I had to fetch help for...and then they all forgot to come help after they dealt with the other crisis. I'm told that folks were walking by to look in on me to make sure I didn't melt down, but I sure as hell did not have time to see them.

I got through it. I SMILED AND SMILED AND SMILED!!!!!!! and fake perked about everything and didn't get a breath and then had to work an even later shift after we closed down to put in everyone's quitting paperwork. And then this morning (8:15 a.m.) I started getting a bunch of e-mails complaining that I hadn't done something else that came in yesterday during the shift and it has to be done yesterday!!!! I sent a restrainedly snippy e-mail saying soooooooooo sorry, I was completely drowning in dropouts and just didn't have the time to do YOUR special form immediately too. Okay, it was politer than that and amused my boss, but come on. Even I can't do every single damn thing that comes in constantly WHILE UNDER AN AVALANCHE, and I say that as the person who's probably the fastest at doing that.

So I survived, at least. My boss and coworkers were proud that I did not have some kind of meltdown. I'm just waiting for the complaints to come in later if I typo'd anyone in the giant pile.

As previously mentioned, I have an emergency booze stash for days like this, which I ended up deploying after I was off the clock. (It was a tiny bottle of mango margarita....which I should not have chugged. Oof.) I probably shouldn't have done that for other reasons because I was occupied after work as well that day, and 20 minutes later the drunk dizzy on no food feeling kicked in. Oddly enough, nobody freaking noticed whatsoever, and eventually I got food and that went away.

As for vacation: Mom suddenly has two weeks of vacation left that she has to use before the end of June, scheduling around her boss doing the same thing with her vacation time. So she bugged me to take next week off and I am doing that. Mostly so I can drag her to group therapy on Tuesday and get my sunroof fixed. We had an incredibly awkward conversation about that on Wednesday that I really wished could have been run by my shrink first. It eventually ended with my saying, "If you don't believe anything I say about getting the car fixed, WHY DON'T YOU CALL THE MECHANIC AND ASK YOURSELF." So she did and they have made arrangements to fix it entirely. He'll order the parts and we'll drop it off on Tuesday and it should be theoretically done on Thursday. (I was all, "I thought it was going to be five days plus ordering parts time," but I guess not.)

I'm not sure what the hell we are going to do the rest of the week here. We have no set plans and due to car things, will probably just end up hanging around here. I'd like to hit a museum or two in SF, but I'm not sure how that's going to go with car repairs. She's got things to do this Friday and Saturday that I don't want to do and I have a lecture to go to on Sunday that she wouldn't get, so I don't think she's coming here before Sunday night at earliest. She wanted me to pick out some plans, but all the cool stuff I've seen listed is for next weekend and I'm not sure how the hell I'm going to entertain her on the cheap for this week. This makes me nervous.

Well, at least I won't be at work for another hell week, right? No phone answering or shifts, and nobody bitching that I didn't do that in 2 seconds. Mom was all, "You don't have to go to work, why aren't you more excited about this?" and I was thinking, "uh, because we'll be having car drama and otherwise I have no idea how to cheaply distract you for a week and this worries me," but she had a point about the work thing.

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