austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

I told myself that it was all a bad dream

So there we have it: a frustrating day, a horrible day, and then an awkward week.

So what to make of the whole ugly scene? Some of it was my fault, yes: I made assumptions about the databases I was getting that weren't right, and I made some oversights in how I was programming that could have been avoided. But I have always been starved for any kind of information, such as experience with the service I was supposed to replace, or specifications of what the databases to work with contained (I learned in May that there were two data fields I had never seen before, although mercifully they turn out to be fields nobody used, raising the question of why they exist), or who exactly the expected users were and what they would find most useful. I could have been more energetic about going out and nagging people until they told me what I needed to know, certainly, although I had only tenuous ways to get in touch with any of the people who could give me that, as I think the need for almost two weeks to get replacement databases shows.

Fundamentally, now, I don't know that my employer has confidence in my ability to do whatever the heck my job is. I've realized also that I don't have confidence in my employer's ability to give me a job that I can meaningfully do, or to provide the supervision that lets me accomplish it to what he or the client want. In any case, being supervised by being yelled at over and over to follow this link, then that, and left to infer what the problem is, by a person that another employee thinks is drunk, is not what I want. Our relationship is broken and I don't know what could fix it.

The incident drove home something that would have been kind of nice to have established before I scheduled myself for sixty monthly car payments: I despise my current job. The things I appreciate about it are that I am paid regularly, and I like the coworkers I ever talk with, and I'm not begrudged the bandwidth I spend watching The Price Is Right or listening to old-time radio. But what I don't like is important: I'm not doing anything that I find interesting even in the few moments that I find it challenging; I don't like having to be there at 8 am every day; I don't like that it's a nine-hour workday; I don't like that the hours and commute leave me fatigued, to the point I don't feel awake enough to do the writing or research I would like to do; I don't like being left worn down by this job.

Also a supplementary detail I was supposed to get a pay raise starting in April, but that didn't happen, apparently the result of the owner failing to tell the secretary in charge of this about it. I don't think that was meant to be any deliberate slight, and it would be fixed swiftly once I talked with the owner about it, but I have not had the chance because being yelled at for a half-hour over a four-line flaw in my code was the most interaction I've had with him since April. I'd have wanted to use this as grounds to switch to a four-day schedule, which would give me at least some time to come back to life, but right now I don't know that I could talk with him about anything but quitting.

I know the job isn't right for me. I can even quantitatively demonstrate that fact, thanks to the data gathered by the WiiFit, where my ``WiiFit Age'' gradually increases through the workweek as the job wears down my energy and flexibility. On the weekends or a long holiday my ``age'' drops, my weight drops noticeably (in fact, the bulk of my weight loss is weekend losses), every measure of how I am improves. Also over the workweek I lose the ability to stay awake the whole workday without napping. I don't know what would fix this, but after this incident I don't know that anything could. I don't like being in that position.

Trivia: The British East India Company promised the crown £400,000 per year in return for freedom from parlimentary inquiries to what it was doing in Bengal, in 1767. In 1772, the company needed to beg for a £1,000,000 loan to avert bankruptcy. Source: The Company: A Short History Of A Revoultionary Idea, John Micklethwait, Adrian Wooldridge.

Currently Reading: A History of The Middle Ages, 284 - 1500, Sidney Painter. It's an interesting book, but it's also about a half-century old so I'm not sure how much of it is still believed accurate by historians and how much of it is now that hilarious stuff we used to think back when we were sooooooo dumb.

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