Wednesday, November 26, 2008 in the Workplace

Oh shit.

Sorry…that phrase just happens to be foremost in my mind at the moment.

I am sitting here at work, twiddling my ass, watching the clock. The bosses are gone of course, because they “have people coming in”. Well Hells Bells…don’t we all? If that is all it takes to go home early why was I not invited TO LEAVE? Oh…that’s right…because I don’t have a

It has been such a special couple of weeks lately here at work. One special event was when one of the bosses mentioned in passing some statement about accountability in reference to me and my job. No point trying to explain here, suffice to say he is the most full of you-know-what person I have ever known.

Everyone knows one, or worse still, has one. He knows everything. He has everything. He has done everything. He has been everywhere. I swear if I were to mention how bad my cramps were this month (and I wouldn’t) he would come up with some horror story about how much worse his were last month.

You know the kind, they will come along and take credit for work that YOU did, or pick up on something you are working on and somehow SAVE THE EFFING DAY in the BIG bosses eyes.

Anyway, accountability on my part has never been an issue in the nine years I have worked here. I have the pay raises and bonuses every year to prove that, but being the silent wuss that I am he can come along with one little sentence and stop me in my tracks for weeks.

He preys on people like me…people who won’t stand up, people who don’t quite know how to tell anyone that he is taking credit for my shit. I watch him do it to others. I've heard him lie straight out and put the blame for some stupid shit on me – something that doesn’t even matter in the long run – and I don’t know how to approach it at all. So I don’t. Instead, I just grow a nice large ulcer.

Speaking of pain in the asses…I have had some stomach virus for 5 days now. Nothing has stayed around in my belly long enough for 5 days to even get to know the wall paper in there. I don’t know how much weight I have lost, but I hope it stays off. I have worked through this of course. Well, I was out a day and a half, but otherwise I have sat here, bent over, rushing back and forth to the bathroom where the most hellacious sounds you have ever heard have broken the silence here. Oh…and when I came back from the one and a half days I absolutely couldn’t get off the potty long enough to get here…they had saved the trash and the dirty dishes in the break room for me. Ahhh what it must be like to have a

Today, I HATE this place. I am so thankful to the Lord to have a job in this time when so many are losing theirs, but this place has begun to suck the life from me. I don’t have many options if I were to leave. I only make a decent wage now because I have been here for a while. I don’t have an education and no matter what skills you have, companies are looking for that piece of paper that I can’t hand them.

So, for now, I guess I’ll just tell you all about my troubles here, and hope that slows the progress of the little entity in the lining of my belly. I wonder if I should name it?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Icing on a cake and a Beating from a belt

When I was 6, my only sibling, a sister, was 15.

Growing up, we had a maid. Her name was Mattie and she loved me to death! She was more mother to me than mother was. She was with us from 6:30 every morning until 5 every evening and she stayed with me when my parents went on vacation as well.

On my sisters 15th birthday, her cake was sitting on the counter looking very inviting. Mother was sleeping since she worked night shifts at the time.

Every few minutes I would walk over to the cake and look at it. Each time I would bend down closer and closer looking, hoping to catch the aroma. Sister was in her room doing whatever 15 year olds do in their room and Mattie was cooking supper.

Finally I couldn’t stand it any longer and I touched that cake. Just a little touch, just enough to get a tad of icing on my finger. Gosh it sure was good. I swiped another little piece, patting down all around where I had snitched so it would not be noticeable I had been messing with it.

Before too long, my good sense went straight out the window and on down the block. Mattie warned me away from the cake several times, but I wasn’t listening, I was enjoying fingers and fingers full of icing.

Around 3, as usual, mom got out of bed to get ready for dinner. When she saw the cake sitting there with not a drop of icing left on it, she went 100% totally ape shit.

As soon as she screamed my name I knew all the icing in the world wasn’t worth what I figured was about to happen to me. Yelling at my sister, she told her to get in here and sit down on the couch. With her belt in one hand and holding on to me with the other, she showed my sister what I had done to her birthday cake.

My sister was mumbling that it didn’t really matter that she wasn’t upset.

Holding me by my hand, she started hitting me with the belt. She would pull way back, as far back as she could, and swing that belt down on my legs and my back and wherever else it landed. We were going in circles as she swung her belt. After several minutes of this I started yelling that I had to pee but she wasn’t stopping. By now, sister was crying, begging mother to stop, please stop, that the cake didn’t matter.

For a brief second mother stopped hitting me and turned toward Kay and told her to shut up or she would get it next. Turning back towards me the screaming and the hitting started again. After several more minutes, I was peeing all down my pants, onto the floor and it was running across the floor. That made her madder and she began hitting me harder and faster for peeing my pants. A little while more of that and I did more than pee my pants.

I was so ashamed. I hadn’t done anything like that since when I was in diapers, now here was sister, mother and Mattie watching me use the bathroom all over myself. I could barely breathe I was crying so hard, I was strangling when I would try to answer her when she would ask if I were ever going to do something like that again.

When it was over, the house was very quiet. Poor Mattie seemed afraid to try to comfort me, and I don’t know where sister went.

Four months after this happened, sister eloped. I was left alone to take all of her madness then.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Maxine - The Rat Who Didn’t Know She was a Rat

I got Maxine in June 2005. She was my very first rat.

I had read about rats and what great pets they made, but I was skeptical, until I got Maxine.

I quickly bought another female so she wouldn’t be alone when I was working and sleeping. They are very social animals and love your company as well as friends of their own kind. Her friend I named Gladys.

It wasn’t long before I had two more, males this time. I kept the males in a separate cage but kept the cages together so they could gee-haw back and forth.

No finer pet could you want. Smart, loving and clean and funny. They will play with anything you give them, be it a store bought toy or something you make yourself.

They slept in their little homemade hammocks. Cuddled up together. They eat anything you give them. Mine seemed to especially love cooked oatmeal, grits, maybe a little ice cream and a chicken bone with a little meat left on it. They eat anything, but these were their favorites.

As of last Thursday, I only have one remaining. Maxine died early Thursday morning. I knew she was on her way and I have prayed and prayed that I wouldn’t have to have her put to sleep.

She leaves behind to mourn her, Rudy, who being an old male (no longer able to reproduce), kept her warm and groomed during her last weeks.

She also leaves behind the rest of my family…the dogs who could NOT understand these critters who would snip their nose if they stuck it too far in their direction, my hubby who had learned to love all kinds of animals because he married a woman who can’t say no to a creature needing a home, and, she leaves behind me, a middle-aged, white-collar woman who soon learned that just like a book – no animal, even a rat, can be judged by its’ cover.

I miss you Maxine, but I wouldn't trade anything for the companionship you gave me the past 3 and a half years.