Pins and Needles

•October 7, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Yesterday, I had interviewed for a position in a different department, and today, I accepted the position. It just seems so fast.

The transitional period, though, is not fast. It’s akin to giving two weeks of notice, which means I will still be where I am for two weeks, maybe three, because we want to wait for the manager of the department to approve this. Not that there’s any way he can say no, but it’s a formality.

I didn’t expect the process to be so emotional. That was probably wrong, because my reasons for moving were entirely emotional in themselves. I am not happy where I am, even though I can’t say for sure why, therefore I am moving. I can tell you the aspects of why, such as the names of the coworkers who get me angry, or the carriers with a zillion departments that they themselves can’t tell apart, or a customer cussing me out for something I don’t really have control over, or the techs who don’t speak English well (and maybe have an attitude) so I have to spend time interpreting everything, or that even though I still make mistakes, I feel I have reached a plateau in terms of what more I can learn here.

That last one is probably key. Self advocacy in person isn’t really my forte, so my opinion is that, if there arent that many key areas I can improve upon, then I should probably be promoted. But I saw genuine hurt in my supervisor’s eyes when I suggested even lightly that that was part of why I was leaving. So I told him after the meeting in an email that I was unhappy for vague reasons afterward, which is also kind of true. No reason to leave them resentful.

While I realize they’ve been having trouble hiring, and they really need people, and this is a bad time to be leaving, I didn’t really feel that the department as a whole is “for” me, as in, they’re loyal to me, and therefore I owed them loyalty. That was never really true. It’s cold, but it’s just a part of business. That’s also true for when the department lets people go. I’m just putting myself where I believe I may be able to thrive more. This is a risk that I am taking. Part of it is the thrill of the risk. I’ve been feeling like stale bread for a bit, and that was only better today.


•October 3, 2015 • Leave a Comment

My brain is so loud. I used to be able to get through these things with yoga, but it’s only gotten harder to do such things recently. For one thing, I don’t exactly have a clean space. I don’t mean clean, like the opposite of dirty. I mean clean, like … an actual yoga studio, which has maybe a small man made natural looking fountain to one side, some wall length mirrors, and no other furniture. But what I do have, are my loud brain and these fingers that can still type.

My office actually has a lot of Asians. We’re not a minority. I feel like most of these people still live with parents or with roommates, and I’m one of a few rare people who choose to live utterly alone – well, with my cat – despite the costs, and I do this because I need quiet. It’s a quiet that my mother and sister would not give me, are unable to give me, and so I run off. First to college, then halfway around the world, then back here, but moving out the first chance I get. My point is not to reiterate my journey, but just to point out this feeling of isolation. I need this. It’s lonely, and hardly anyone can relate, it feels like, sometimes, but I need this. It’s not isolation so much as solitude.

I think this is also the one thing I’m looking for while I’m working, as well. The kind of work where I don’t really have to talk, or explain. Just work with my hands. Some would think thats going backwards. Working with your hands, like creating something, sculpture or carpentry, pays far less, requires far more concentration. Ah, I hunger for it.

On Not Saving Anything and Having Lots of Fun

•October 1, 2015 • Leave a Comment

It’s almost time for bed again. When I think about going to sleep, that sounds comfortable. When I think about getting up to go to work, I groan inside, but know that it’s necessary, because I need to pay the bills. I feel old, I think about my 401k. But here are some ways that I’m not an adult – maybe I’m doing this to cheer myself up. I’m eating chips in bed right now. I watch youtube videos and laugh at them all the time. I love to sleep as long as I want and get up fairly late in the morning or even afternoon. I shirk all possible social obligations as long as I can get away with it (my poor friends, haha). I don’t like cooking, because it means working for gratification. I don’t like work, period. My ideal day is to wake up whenever I want, ending with falling asleep whenever I want. I would play some video games, get some takeout, cuddle with the boyfriend and play with the cat. I would build something with my hands. Like a birdhouse. Or some kind of gym for the cat, out of wood, with “organic” paint, if paint like that exists. In a parallel universe, I’d been a petty criminal who went to jail for 5 years, then came out and made a living through carpentry. Driving around on a motorbike, being fashionably impractical for the luxury of it, but also having a car. It’s a daydream, so I don’t know how a former petty criminal would earn enough to have both a motorcycle and a car. Maybe if I sold weed. Those stores, with all sorted pipes and paraphernalia, are all over downtown Boston now.

Not Here

•September 26, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Treasured silence rings, hidden as a bubble in the midst of sirens and unrest. Daily battles are fought at work, constantly. I don’t need them, and I don’t care about any of it. I don’t even want there to be an “I”. Suspend my ego, or better yet, melt it into the stars, so playfully winking and cold in the autumn night sky. My cat’s right ear has a tumor. They believe it’s benign, but I need to apply this ointment a few times a day, or as much as possible. “Eugene,” I breathe, as he jumps on the bed. Why is an untamed creature like him so fragile beneath the flowing beauty of his motions? Why do I get caught in the unrelenting ugly of competing humanity in the office? These words are my salvation, louder than my verbal voice can scream.

Throw that Dart

•September 23, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Troubleshooting is such a funny word. I think the idea is that internet or computer troubles is like a target, and troubleshooting is like throwing a dart onto the board. If you miss the first time, then you narrow down that possibility, and try again. It makes it seem so not precise. Actually, doctors do that too. Science is not precise.

Tunnel Vision Going Blind

•September 11, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Sometimes I wonder if I’m dead already, and I just wasn’t quick enough to catch on. That would mean everyone I work with everyday also isn’t quick enough to catch on. A building full of dense people, pushing through procedures in return for currency to eat food and buy more media to numb the mind.

The people who create the media, though, seem to have a madness of another sort. The ideas have to be just crazy enough to be entertaining, yet still normative enough to be relatable. This is the formula for what sells. Then the general public do their thing and start judging, and sometimes the entertainers start self censoring, and then we’re all just silly human beings again. That’s the entertainment industry.

Where I’m at, the technology industry, I have this theory that the crazy people are the inventors who innovate. My company doesn’t innovate, but it does do things for cheap for businesses. Corporate culture is this set of social rules that say, do things this way to get things done, and dissension usually means everyone else thinks you’re wrong. To earn more, you obey the rules and play the dumb game, and if you’re good little puppies, they’ll give you a different set of rules once you’re up there so that you’re an enforcer. Then you become even more self censoring, and I’ve seen the people change.

It’s very disappointing. It’s like the conversations are gone once they get promoted, and you thought that wouldn’t change them, but they’re playing by a different set of rules now, which means they will talk to you less or stop talking when they disapprove of what you’re saying, when a month ago, you were discussing the same topics in the same attitude and it was completely fine.

I guess nobody told me purgatory would be so structured. Or that I shouldn’t get attached to anything. I don’t know why I expected any different. Purgatory is a reform program, isn’t it? It means that it’s supposed to be good at making you give in and jump their stupid hoops. There used to be far more rage, until I realized that hating what I do when I have to do it for 40 hours a week, and more than that most of the time, is purely self destructive. But that doesn’t mean the dissonance is gone, or that I can just switch off my brain.

I am grateful to have a job. It’s just that I’m also getting tunnel vision. Vacation? Sometime in the next … decade?

Florescent Lit Hallways

•August 7, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Cliches are words and imagery that are repeated often enough in stories that they become too familiar — such as the American Dream, a butterfly as metamorphosis, and offices filled with quiet desperation.

I go to an office filled with quiet desperation every day.

Maybe that’s only what it seems like to me. So then, perhaps I’ve become a cliche. Like every person who ever wanted to be a writer but never really came close to being published. I used to live vicariously through blogs of famous authors, trying to soak in all the details of how they push through the creative process, with all the editing and revising with their editors until the final work is a gem that sells millions of copies. That’s not where I am now.

It’s not that anything bad is happening. I recently found a cheap-ish apartment, it’s a stable job that pays alright. I’m with someone who also seems very steady and reliable. I am dissatisfied. It feels like I’ve learned enough in a place with rules that change ever so slightly all the time, but because it’s not that noticeable, will come to hurt my work status. A lot of minutiae detail that don’t seem to matter. But they do, because they affect my credibility.

Nerd cred isn’t something I value, which is why I have pretty much none. The only cred I have might be travelers’ cred, which is not valuable in technology companies. But I don’t think I’m in the wrong industry, because I sincerely enjoyed building this computer. Where’s a technology company with less one-upping nerd culture when you need one? Am I qualified to apply? Is this a unique mindset?

Maybe it’s not that cliched after all? Maybe you can tell me.


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