Monday, August 15, 2011

I'm gone a bit odd............

No smart comments about the title of this post please. Ok, maybe I should have said odder. I've been incarcerated in the basement of the office building since mid May computerising a stationery stores system and doing the work of the storeman who is off enjoying himself having a hip relacement (joke Michael!). At one stage in my thirty years with this organisation I worked in Building Facilities and used to joke that I had control of toilets and canteens and was therefore all powerful. Now I have control of bog-roll and photocopy/print paper so I have ABSOLUTE control of the place, which appears to run on both items judging by the amounts I have to buy and distribute.

Nobody likes me in this job. They told me so. 'Michael's so nice - you're an aul' wagon' they cry when I query their use of any item. One gormless young one had the misfortune to tell me she needed rubber bands urgently to which I replied 'Brain surgery is urgent dear. Rubber bands are not'. It never ceases to amaze me how excited people get about stationery. They label everything they requisition as personal to themselves. If there is one thing I cannot bear it is a stapler with someones name tippexed on it. The stapler belongs to the employer not the indiviual employee - the employee is merely allowed use the stapler whilst they work for the employer. It's the same with rulers, notebooks - anything that can be labelled is labelled.

I think it's a regression to childhood. You know, when you got all your new school books copies, pencils erasers etc and laboriously put your name on every item and felt all pleased and grown up with yourself. On top of these childish souls there are a number of 'serial' shoppers. Some people think it quite alright to leave their own office and disappear to Stores twice or three times a week looking for one or two items. The new computerised system will put a halt to that particular gallop as in future all orders must be e mailed . So I'll have even fewer visitors.

I can't even have the radio on as there is no reception in the basement. The storeman won't be back until the end of October - at which stage I will quite definitely be do-lalley. I like to gab and gabbing to yourself is no fun because you never know the answers to your own questions, well I don't. Am I making sense? Probably not. See, I told you I was losing it.

I didn't think this particular job would bother me because as a writer I often spend hours at a time staring at a computer screen lost in the world of my characters. However I like that work and often have to drag myself back to the real world. Keying in and counting stock items of rubber bands, tabbed folders, staple extractors, sellotape, stamp pads, paper, notebooks, envelopes and their prices is, to say the least, mind-numbingly boring. A redundant turnip could do it. So yes I can be happy working alone, but only when I'm doing something I'm passionate about. It's difficult to get excited over the advantages of a finetipped pen over a ballpoint biro.

I can't believe I have written a blog about my incredibly boring employment.

To counteract the hacking away at my soul I throw my energies into the Story Queen and the fiction writer when I get home. The Queen's reputation is growing and I even have business cards for her now! The fiction writer is getting nervous about her book launch next month - she hopes she doesn't lose too much money on it (so does her husband!). The Queen and the author keep the storekeeper relatively for the mother,wife and housekeeper, well, that's another days blog.

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