Monthly Archives: February 2004

The Very Breath of My Body

Called in sick this morning. Stayed home from work and called my doctor according to his orders. My bronchitis hasn’t gotten better since monday when I visited him and started my antibiotic treatment. Instead of enduring another day at work with this shit, I stayed home. Don’t ask me why I felt guilty for doing it; I just don’t know.

So, yesterday at work, the bending over to pick up stacks of paper, the exertion, the activity made my chest clench up tight, and breathing was a real chore. It was tight, dry, and no amount of my asthma inhaler would make it release. I went home, guzzled water, made sure to breathe normally and stop freaking out. My plans to leave the house and go out for the first time this week were ruined. I simply stayed home another night. Gave me time to deal with reinstalling the OS on my laptop. Around 1:30am, I call it a night.

This morning, I woke up several times. When I can’t breathe well, I can’t sleep well, and so I keep waking up during the night and morning. Have been for the past week, and it’s tiresome. I’m tired. So, this morning, under my thicker-than-usual blankets, I laid there half-awake and warm. Finally, my lungs were open, productive. I could cough. But, as the alarm clock got me out of bed, I knew that today wouldn’t be a day to work. Not in the least. So I called in, then left a message with my doctor, and went back to my room to get into some sweatpants and continue drinking more water.

My doctor’s nurse called around 11am. Finally. After some consultation with my doctor, the nurse phones a prescription for Nasonex to Walgreen’s, which I pick up around 5. The prescription is a nasal decongestant, to keep my sinuses from blocking up or draining into my lungs during the day and night. After smoking for 8 years, I’ve forgotten what it was like to not have a stuffy nose, inflamed sinuses. Maybe I can get them back, and soon.

Patrick and I went out for some fast food, which I really needed. This mass consumption of water this week has me getting angrily hungry. And the antibiotic isn’t helping in that regard one bit.

I finally got out of the house. I’m at Mojo’s now, finishing up the last of the reinstallation and just tooling around online. It’s colder than frozen dogshit in here. Feeling kinda heady, buzzing from the decongestant guaifenessin (yes, I’m feeling ‘robo’). So, I think I’ll head home soon.

As for working tomorrow: I don’t know. My sick hours are growing short; I need to hold onto them. But if I go to work, will my bronchitis get worse? I simply don’t know. Anything.

Direction, Breezes, Breathing, and Flight

Things at work are still boring, stale, and dry. Irritating. Annoying. The other day I was talking with a coworker in passing, chit-chat kind of stuff. She was complaining about being on the tail-end of a chest cold, congestion problems. I remarked that there were some weeks I felt OK on monday morning, but by the time Friday came around, my chest was tight and my breathing was kinda rough. I mused about it either being fumes, falling insulation fiber, whatever. Doesn’t happen all the time. We shrugged our shoulders, I walked on to continue working, and that was that.

Around 4:30pm the bosslady calls me into her office. I hate when that happens, because she’s always got a serious look when she does it, and she’s called coworkers into her office quite a bit for no pleasant reason. So I was cringing, at best, and angry at worst, about what I could’ve possibly done to deserve punishment. So, I get in there, she pulls the door closed, and she begins asking me about a rumor from an unnamed source that’s floating around that I’m talking about possible health problems from the work environment, that she wants to “nip this in the bud”, and so on. I remembered thinking to myself, “Well, I know better than to trust that coworker again with chit-chat.” Either she relayed the chat, or the bosslady overheard, I don’t know. But I’m being asked about what I meant when I stated that. I told her it was only an observation, not a claim, not a fact. Whether it was environmental, or mental, I knew not. And now that I am living more healthily, it’ll be a span of time before I can make another assessment about it. Give my chest time to heal, then if it happens again, we’ll talk.

Talk about butterflies under the magnifying glass.

So, she’s got that “nipped”, and the conversation leads on to my attitude, my demeanor when I’m at work, my goal, what I’m trying to get out of working there. I’m there to earn a paycheck. That job facilitates my lifestyle, plain and simple. It’s not a career. Printing isn’t a career choice. It’s a job. Anything I do is just a job. But I can’t tell her that. She has a hand on the company pursestrings. I tell her that yes I enjoy working there, that yes my gruff and distant attitude is just a trait of my personality, and that as of late I’ve been having a mindset change, a slump. She tried to sum up my flat answers as best as she could, and she came up, rather accurately, with a flatline. And that’s exactly how I feel about life, about everything. Especially that job. It’s just, bleh. I have no ten-year plan. No five-year plan. No plans at all. She stated that I was smart, productive, and an odd fit for the job, and she started to question why I was there at all. I had no answers for her, simply because I didn’t want to paint myself into a corner. I didn’t want to provide ammunition, to hand her the pen to write my pink slip. She’s the bosslady. I tell her what will keep me earning pay. You can’t expect any other kind of honesty.

Flatline. I’m not happy there. Haven’t been in a while. She says she can’t imagine living a life where she’s not excited about what’s going on at work, about what she’s able to contribute to. If you ask me, I can see that people like that do exist, but I can’t, for my life, imagine what that position in life is like. I can’t. I’m sorry, but I can’t get excited about work. I rarely get excited about things these days. There are expectations there, everywhere, and I hate performing. Simple as that. Give me a task, show me a corner, hand me a machine, and leave me the hell alone. That’s when I’ll work. That’s where I work best.

But now, it appears I’m working under that magnifying glass.

Butterflies and wind.

Whatever. No Patience To Be Found Here.

So here I am. Whatever. Nothing ecstatically, fantastically great to report. Whatever. I hate technology. My Time-Warner cable modem connection has been sucking shit for the past three weeks. You expect me to feel gung-ho about life when I can’t reliably tell anyone? Time-Warner states that there indeed is a problem in the neighborhood. No shit. It’s not like it’s rocket surgery. Fix the fucking thing, or I cancel service. Then again, going to another company wouldn’t work — they all use the same fucking equipment. Whatever.

Last week, during the morning of a major downpour, there was water pooling and flowing across the road in the construction zone outside of my apartment. It’s a stretch of road I have to drive every day to get to work. Around 3pm, I stick my head out the back door of my job to check on the weather. It was then that I noticed that I was the proud recipient of a flat tire. Fuck. Three-inch long piece of stamped steel, looked like a hinge or a latch, buried in my left-rear tire. It must have washed into the roadway from the construction debris. So, I finished up a job, excused myself, clocked out, put on the donut tire, and limped to the nearest tire shop. One hour and $100 later I have two new tires to replace the flat and the other rear tire which has been patched a year ago. So, with all that, I was officially, undeniably poor. I still am until this friday, a long-overdue payday.

Things suck.

If you know me (which you should, since you’re visiting my site), and you see me in my recent daily life, you’ve probably noticed (if you cared enough) that I’ve been getting really short-tempered lately. I’m growing impatient with a lot of things. My tolerance of bullshit is growing really thin.

Case in point — the bosslady is growing on my ever-fucking nerves. I really don’t know what the hell is up with women who grew up as the girls who made THE RULES of the playground. They made all the rules, they made all the games, and if you weren’t playing according to the rules, spoken AND unspoken, then you were the target of their anger. So the bosslady, a.k.a. the woman married to the boss, has joined our team in an effort to police her husband make things more efficient and to help “set up ‘systems'” (that’s a term straight from corporate hell). Whatever. If she doesn’t stop pandering and condescending to us, I’m afraid she’s not going to have a workforce left to help pay for her future retirement. We’re adults. We’re not her daughters. Stop that shit.

So, yeah, I’m hating my job. Too much bullshit. Leave us alone and let us do our jobs. That’s all we ask.

But you can’t tell her that.

I was going to go to Texarkana last weekend to see my mother for her birthday weekend, but I don’t feel comfortable at all with driving that distance with my timing belt getting as old as it is. It’s about 50-thousand miles overdue, and I don’t like that. How much will it cost me to have it replaced? Hold onto your lunches, because I lost mine: no less than $450. What the fuck for? God. Something replaceable like that, there’s a system for doing it if the mechanic’s experienced. No sense in that shit. $80 for a new belt and water pump, so what’s the rest of the cost? Four hours of labor. Fuck that shit. Bullshit.

Nothing good to brag about. Sorry. Tune in later.