Saturday, December 11, 2004

Racism? Or just a Loser Temp?

[Note: Wrote this one 11-19-04. End of first week of newest assignment. Let's hope I don't get dooced behind it.]

I’m buzzing off of Excedrin, chocolate, and nerves. Not a good combo, but feh. This post will be written in the manner of Slaughterhouse Five, which I FINALLY finished, one month after the book was due. So it goes.

I’m temping. I’m in a big corporate box. On a high floor, oh la! I have my own desk. I am an acting Executive Assistant. When my temp agency called, they said they needed an administrative assistant who knew Power Point. No problem. The difference between an EXECUTIVE Assistant and an Administrative Assistant is, while maybe not huge, big enough!!! More warning was really needed. And to top it off, I had to take a drug test. So it goes.

I get there on Monday, and there’s another temp who’s already settled in. So it goes. While the VP’s Exec Assist tries to figure it out, the other temp and I chat. We have a lot in common, it turns out. Both got Master’s and were trying to figure out what was next. Both had ponytails, and were pretty progressive Christians. She is a nice person. I wanted to be her friend. I got the assignment. I felt bad. I almost gave it up. She told me that, since she was married, she didn’t need the check as much as I did, since one paycheck was coming in. I wanted to cry. I took the assignment. So it goes.

First thing I do when I get to an assignment is look for the raisins. You know, the “number of raisins left in the milk after you eat Raisin Bran” game? I have played it all my life. Ever since I was moved into Gifted and Talented classes in Second Grade, I have played this game. Because, more often than not, until I got to college, I was the only Black person in my class. Once, I was the only one in my school. Yeah, I didn’t last there very long. The PeeTayBee didn’t like me or my obnoxious parents. They thought my parents were pushy for wanting to make sure I was fitting in, and getting help if needed, and being respected and not picked on. So it goes. I digress.

I saw two other Black women on Monday. One was very friendly, she works in the mailroom. The other is an Administrative Assistant. Reserved, but cordial. You know we can’t look like we know each other on the first day. Because people will inquire. So it goes. I get it. I’ve been corporate before. I saw not a one Latino or Asian, though a couple of execs looked swarthy. As I was getting acclimated to my desk, an exec walked up to my supervisor and said “Where’s the other one? She gone?” without even offering a cursory “hello, dog, kiss my ass” to me. So it goes. I figured it was because I’m a temp. Interesting reality: invisible woman, not because of race, but because of status as contract employee. What Would Ellison Do?

That person will not speak to me, even on Day 5. So it goes. By Day 3, most of the execs, and yes, 98% of them are White Men, realized I might be sticking around for a while, and started to say hello in the mornings. The work they “entrust” to me comes in a trickle. Hmm, she can work in spreadsheets, give her a task. She answers phones well, have her fax something. Bind a book; not bad. Can you overnight something? So it goes.

By the end of the week, one of the VPs relaxed enough to inquire about my history. He said “Where are you from? You’re not from here.” What, pray tell, about me says that I’m not Midwestern-born-and-raised? The fact that I knew British Parliament was fighting over fox hunting? My lack of a Midwestern accent? The International Relations book on the desk when I have no work? The natural hairstyle? So it goes.

The execs are realizing, except for the phone system, I catch on pretty quickly. I am having issues with putting people on hold and taking them off again. So it goes. It’s hard temping long-term. You want to be comfortable, and make things nice, but you know you could be released on a whim. That happened two weeks ago. So it goes. Maybe they knew I was a bitter Democrat and were afraid I’d go postal after the election. So it could have gone.

Compared to working in Public Schools, I’m okay. Sure, there was a comment that was borderline sexual harassment earlier this week. Sure he also made a joke about a European looking like he had HIV. Sure he finds something to say to me every day. I’m starting to think he has some weird-ass crush. So it goes. I’m only here for two more weeks. They’re interviewing for the spot I’m in on Wednesday. It was suggested that I submit for the job. Feh. I’m blowing this popsicle stand as soon as I get the chance.

So it will be.

12-11-04: I'd like add, I caved and submitted my resume and cover. And was told I would be interviewed shortly. I did this the week of Thanksgiving.

I still haven't heard from the HR heifer. And they've interviewed another temp.

Oh, yeah, I'm frickin out of this town.

Hemelse Dromer

Hemelse Dromer I really want to learn Dutch. REALLY. Don't you think that would be a good language to learn?

Sensory Overload

Great site. I know it's way too early in my "journalling career" to plug a site, but I love that site.

Empty Teacup. I have to go make some green tea, now.

Raze: Pedantic Fighter of Injustice and Lover of Flan
Posted by Hello

Fishy, very fishy

Pisces Horoscope for 12/13- 12/19

This week's scenario is highlighted by your ability to think quickly on your feet.

Questions will be asked and you'll have to have all the right answers.

Dare to dream your dreams but your ideas may need to be presented in a more creative fashion.

You'll get a lot more if you use honey instead of vinegar to attract your audience.

Use your mind and body to display your talents and achieve what is beyond other's range.

This certainly is the time to be noticed.

By week's end, you'll be able to go back to business as usual.

Allow others take care of their own problems, for a while.

This horoscope provided by Astrology Source.

Learn about your inner self, friends, and lovers.

Get your free blog ready horoscope for this week at

A Gem from August

[Note: I wrote this while securing employment as a substitute teacher. That only explains half my vehemence, however.]

8/24/04 (KSDK) -- A 5-year-old boy gets the ride of his life after he got behind the wheel of his uncle's Cadillac and drove several blocks. He also got two tickets, one for driving without a license, the other for driving without insurance. Erin O’Neill

Okay, this just goes to show that I was right all along about parents not raising their children. How does a 5-year-old go joyriding? Not, he knocked the car into gear and it rolled. This little menace knew exactly what he was doing. And the cheery anchor people on TV were chuckling. Because a little future thug got started boosting cars at the precious age of 5. Great. Another statistic in three years. Gotta love St. Louis. “Show me people with wild, bad children!”

Was it completely his fault? No, his rocket scientist uncle left the motor running. YET- I posit that, even if this Caddy (and you knew it was going to be a Cadillac) was sitting there, cold, in the driveway, the kid was going to start that puppy up and take her for a spin. So, I can’t fault Uncle Pookie too darn much. He probably just “ran into the house for a second.” Gas prices are unbelievable, but hey! You make enough money to fill a Caddy up and let her idle while you talk to your (maybe) sister.

Regardless, or irregardless, as I like to say when using irony, of the Caddy’s status of activity, the five-year-old genius, I’ll call him Lil Man, got into the vehicle, adjusted the seat to his height—stop laughing. I am dead serious. It was on the noon news! No, really. Stop chortling, this isn’t funny. This kid is dangerous and should be tried as an adult. He adjusted the seat, put on his seat belt, and shifted the car into Drive. The only thing that would have made this tale perfect is if the car was a manual. But, alas, men can’t drive manuals anymore. But that’s another rant.

The criminal drove three blocks, made a U-turn, and drove another 4 before crashing into a stop sign. The wonderful, attentive East St. Louis police gave him two moving violation citations: for driving without a license and without insurance. Later, once they realized this was a local TV story, they called the mother to bring the tickets “downtown” so they could erase them. How about a ticket for the uncle? And the mom, for having a really bad parenting day?

Not to put a political point on it, but if the anti-abortion and birth control folks would spend as much on teaching folks how to parent as they do on bowing their heads in shame in front of PP clinics, I wouldn’t have to go ballistic when I hear mothers say: "I was scared to death. I was nervous the whole day. He went from 36th to 39th, made a U-turn back from 39th to 35th and that's when I caught him. When I tried to cut him off I couldn't because when I tried to he just kept going real fast. I said, he told me you was trying to cut me off so I kept going.” Um, anybody? Anybody? It’s just me? Come on, people! You let a FIVE-YEAR-OLD CHILD IN A CADILLAC DRIVE PAST YOU?! I’m going to have an aneurism behind this. I know it. I keep hitting myself in the head, because I can’t get past the fact that a grown woman saw her son execute a FRICKIN U-TURN, in East St. Louis, and then gun past her INTENTIONALLY! As Jessica Simpson would say, Oh my GAW! And this kid is still walking? Unassisted?

Is it just me, or is this an indicator of how far our society has sunk? People, raise your children right! Damn, how about just raise your children?! Your kids are the whiny annoying ones people glare at in public. Yep, it’s you, and when you start screaming at them, you are the ones looking like Asses, because we all know you aren’t raising your children. Obviously, because they’re boosting cars and hitting you and cursing at you. This is what happens when you don’t follow through on your promises of “Timeout.” Or just don’t scare the bejeezus out of them in the first place. Our moms did it with mere looks. Guess what? Looks don’t get it anymore, sister. You need to layeth the smacketh downeth at home, not at Target.

And, this being America, you know, since the kid was Black, 5- and 6-year-old Black males are going to be profiled for carjackings now. Carjackings are on the increase in St. Louis. Damn kindergartners are just taking over the grand theft racket. It’s starting in the Midwest, but mark my words, America, their network is spreading. Today, St. Louis—next week, Houston. And you seriously want to take your bad-ass children to see “Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2?” Um, someone needs a timeout, and it isn’t your junior gangstas.


So, I'm not new to blogging/journalling. The thing is, every shiny free juornal that comes along, I jump on the bandwagon. So I probably have 6 or 12 starts out there in the world. Sad. I can't find them all, so I'm just going to pull some material from the last 2 (b/c I can find those links) and just get caught up over here.

I can't say I have a particular mission. I'm a Black woman. In academia (though on leave currently, and trying to get back in). Who is politically progressive, into artsy-fartsy stuff and can be pretentious with it. I dislike alcoholics in denial. And I love a good caramel appletini. Full of contradictions. Like being heterosexual with no tolerance for men right now. I'm sure I'll have many chances to delve into that cesspool.

Damn, I just read something about Moveable Type. I may have to move again.

Um, quick shout out to Whisper! This is the first blog I'll let her see. ROFLMBAO

Dodie Smith Quote

from I Capture the Castle:

Contemplation seems to be about the only luxury that costs nothing.

Good book so far.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

I'm somewhat geeky. No, really?

You are 38% geek
You are a geek liaison, which means you go both ways. You can hang out with normal people or you can hang out with geeks which means you often have geeks as friends and/or have a job where you have to mediate between geeks and normal people. This is an important role and one of which you should be proud. In fact, you can make a good deal of money as a translator.

Normal: Tell our geek we need him to work this weekend.

You [to Geek]: We need more than that, Scotty. You'll have to stay until you can squeeze more outta them engines!

Geek [to You]: I'm givin' her all she's got, Captain, but we need more dilithium crystals!

You [to Normal]: He wants to know if he gets overtime.

Take the Polygeek Quiz at

And I'm okay with this.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

So Stereotypical in So Many Ways

Your Element Is Water

A bit of a contradiction, you can seem both lighthearted
and serious. That's because you're good at going with the flow - but you also
are deep. Highly intuitive, you tune in to people's emotions and moods easily.
You are able to tap into deep emotional connections and connect with others.
You prefer a smooth, harmonious life - but you can navigate your way around
waves. You have a knack for getting people to get along and making life a little
more peaceful.

What's Your Element?

Stereotypical in that I'm a water sign. In that I spent important years on a coast. In that I'm mercurial.

Bummer. I hate being a stereotype. More on what that stems from later.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Ignoble Beginnings

should be as succinct as possible.