Saturday, April 15, 2006

Back Again

I'm having this recurring fantasy of unionizing my workplace. I could be the next Norma Rae. Well, maybe not, but it appeals to my dark sense of humor and irony.
I work in a retail store and yes, in fact there is a retail workers union in existence. It's part of the IWW, Industrial Workers Worldwide. It's kind of a catchall for all those jobs that don't have a union already. Amusement park workers, for example. I picture Mickey, Goofy and Snow White marching for higher wages and less time spent in the god damn suits.
Now, you wouldn't think it could happen in NYC. But there is a coffee shop in Brooklyn where all the workers have joined the IWW. I think I may have to go and have a chat with them about it.
All this has been brought about by a change in the status quo at my job. Sales are down. The reaction sets in. The sales staff is not doing its job. (And to be fair this is true in two or three cases). Time to tighten the reigns, institute more restrictions and procedures (and this at place that already has a bureaucracy bigger than some small nations) and do some talking about how expendable the staff is.
Now, in my experience this sort of thing just doesn't work. Or if it does it's only in the short term. No one changes how they think or behave. They just cover their own asses (already the favorite sport at my store). And eventually when the pressure eases off (you can't maintain it indefinitely) everything goes right back to where it was. It's like taking pills to lose weight. It works but if you don't change how you live you had better keep taking those pills or the weight will come right back.
So where does that leave us? Up the proverbial creek. And not only do we not have a paddle, but the boat is leaking.
I had intended to stay at my job once my website went live, just go part time. But not now. In fact, I am thinking of burning my bridges when I go so I am not tempted to return should I need some extra income. For most of my life I have taken the path of least resistance and it has led me to this paranoid freakshow I persist in calling my job. They say you have to hit bottom before you can change. I can feel it at my feet, cold and unyielding. Time to climb back out.

On a lighter note, here are my kitties, blinking in the light of the flash. That's Nora on the left and Nick on the right. Not the best picture but I lost some when my hard drive died. I will take more. But for now...

1 comment:

Epiphany Alone said...

Interesting topic. Must be something in the stars these days...

After my peed off post about my OB, I finally worked up the courage to page him and actually ask him what the note meant. He quickly explained that he has the wrong phone number in my chart, and the news wasn't all bad, but it wasn't all good either. My fasting glucose numbers were OK, but 2 of the 3 tolerance numbers were above normal. Since during pregnancy, mom makes insulin both for herself and for baby, not making enough insulin can lead to excessive fetal weight gain, resulting in difficult birth or c-section. Anyway, doc is pretty confident that since my fasting glucose is OK, I am probably not diabetic, however to assure that both our weight gain remains under control, he's sending us to the diabetes center for a consultation with a dietician.

Yeah, from a calm rational perspective, this is not the biggest of deals. It hasn't alluded me that I've spent most of my adult life in the overweight-to-obese range. I knew carrying around those extra pounds wasn't doing me any favors...but it sort of is a different thing when A Medical Professional starts using words like "prediabetes". They had been using "prehypertension" for a while, now I have "chronic primary hypertenstion". So this morning, I thought I was going to have a friendly chat on the phone with a buddy I haven't talked to in a couple of weeks, and I ended up bawling to him "well what do you suppose the life expectancy is of someone with diabetes and hypertension...huh? huh? Where do you think it'll put my risk of an early stroke? Vascular dementia? My dad's had 3 heart attacks. Women are less likely to survive an infarction." My friend tried to be assuring that I was being my overreactive drama queen self, but you know what? And here's where we get back to your point...

How badly must we afraid and angry to we have to be to force a change in our own lives, even when it is ultimately the best choice? It's so much easier to just go through the day to day and tolerate the "little frustration" that we must endure in jobs we don't like, among people who don't inspire us, in being too out of shape to climb stairs without getting out of breath. Once we start considering the cumulative effect of these negative aspects, it starts piling up pretty fast.

Wow, this is a long comment! :) Anyway, I encourage you to listen to that voice saying "run away, run away"...