welfare bum

Successfully missing the point since 1977.

Friday, August 29, 2008

most people think they would kill for my job

"so then mmat, what do you do for a living there eh?"


and in a way, i'm not entirely exaggerating. the amount of work i do in a day does not justify my being employed, but somehow i remain. i've passed through the 3 month probationary period (sans performance review to this point) so from a legal perspective it will now be difficult for the company to justify letting me go.

do i choose to do nothing every day? well, yes and no. i choose to continue to work here until something better comes along, but i do not choose my workload - or lack thereof.

every day i come to work and hope to the gods that something will have happened and they'll need me to work my ass off. i keep hoping that at some point someone will say "hey mmat, this is why we were so excited to hire you - we need you to work your way through this...." but that never happens. i sit, and wait.

and the waiting game is not the most fun game to play. my internet access is extremely limited: no Youtube, no music-related web sites, most online comic sites are blocked, no SomethingAwful.com for me either. most of the images don't even come through in my Google Reader.

and doing non-internet related things is risky based on the location of my desk. i have one of those desks that about 60% of the people on my floor walk past at least twice a day. somehow, that seems to always be my fate. at my last job, i sat directly in front of the CEO's office, the job previous i was sitting in front of the VP of Operations. so some days i read a book, some days i doodle in my sketch book, but anything i do has to be in relatively short sessions. reading too long will encourage the "what are you reading" people to start asking questions, drawing too much sparks the "ooh, are you an artist?" comments.

i'm not an artist. i'm just incredibly bored.

earlier in the year, my dad got me a subscription to Bicycling Magazine. i have read every issue cover-to-cover so far this year. even the advertisements.

i suppose i should be happy that i am at least employed, and to a certain extent i am. i am surprised that the company for which i work pays me to come in and forces me to spend a full 8+ hour day here. i'd really like to have something to do to pass the time though. other people in the office seem to be busy - or maybe they're just really good at pretending.

and today, the day before a long weekend, will be one of the worst. i expect anyone who has the authority to request work from me today will either be taking the day off or leaving the office early. being that i'm a new employee, i do not yet qualify for time off and will sit here drawing pictures and reading The Great Shark Hunt until 5 pm.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

sky rockets in flight, afternoon delight!

i just bought this shirt:

because seriously - unicorns! humping! and it's called Afternoon Delight!


Monday, August 18, 2008

knitting is the manliest sport of all, right after cycling

yes, it's true. i knit.

though not very well, and not very quickly. probably through a lack of practice and commitment. i have an awesome handspun yarn that i got for christmas (courtesy of Studioloo) that is nice enough on its own that i don't have to do any fancy stitches or anything like that to make my scarf look nice. but being that my wardrobe is seriously aging and my collection of Mr. Rogers style cardigan sweaters is reducing itself each year through wear, i've decided that i'm going to undertake a task that no man has ever done before:

i'm going to knit a sweater.

well, i'm pretty sure that through the years maybe one or two men has knitted a sweater before but mine will be better and will likely take much longer to make. and it's not through inexperience that it will take so long, but simply because i'm so frickin awesome.

i was persuaded to get a copy of Son of Stitch 'N Bitch this weekend and found a few patterns in there that i'm going to try to figure out. figuring out knitting patterns is more difficulty because of my manliness, but dammit, i'm going to get it right. also, i need a new sweater because mine are running out of time. thankfully, the book has a glossary of all the weird abbreviations and terms that are used in these patterns that make them more bizarre looking than japanese stereo instructions.

hopefully in the next few days i'll be able to post the first progress pictures.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

on time like canada frickin post

today i decided to show up to work with a clean shave, freshly cut hair and nice looking clothes.  more than likely people will think i've got a job interview, and i find it fun to make people think that.
i don't have an interview by the way.  looking for work is annoying.
but i also managed to show up on time, probably for the first time this week.  well before the twice-a-day guys even assembled to go out.  the funny thing about this morning's coffee run for them is that the leader of this group (my boss) was actually a good 40 minutes late for work and hadn't even logged in yet.  he just strolled in at ten minutes after nine, set down his bag and said "let's go gentlemen, i need my coffee this morning"
what was i doing at work so early (aka on time)?  well yesterday i actually worked, so this morning i emailed the last report i was working on and started hitting my limited internet access for a new hat and a bike i will probably never buy because i can never make up my mind about things (how could i possibly betray Agent Orange?).  i've been lacking discipline over the last week or so with respect to getting on my bike so a $700 purchase in that department may not be qualified at this point.  i probably can justify buying a hat because hey - twenty bucks right?


Thursday, August 07, 2008

the tim horton's phenomenon

as almost every Canadian citizen knows and understands, the place for you to get a reliable cup of coffee in Canada is Tim Horton's.  some people have philosophized that they put addictive chemicals in their coffee, some people believe that there's something about the cream that they put in the coffee that somehow makes it more addictive, but the fact is that it's just an inexpensive generic and reliable cup of coffee is what truly makes it what it is.  if you buy a Tim Horton's coffee in downtown Toronto, it will taste the same as the cup of Tim Horton's coffee you bought in Vancouver and it's not going to cost you an arm and a leg to buy it.  a generic coffee at Starbucks will cost you over $2, but that same generic coffee at ol' Timmy's will only cost you $1.40.
and anyone who works in the corporate world in Canada knows that Tim Horton's is an essential part of your daily office routine.  my last two jobs showed me that Canadian office workers have an uncanny addiction to the caffeine in the aforementioned coffee and the routine involved in acquiring it.  pass by any Tim Horton's at 8:30 am and you'll see for yourself the lineup of cars that will extend beyond their drive-thru, circle the parking lot and generally go out into the street.
at my new job, i see this corporate coffee addiction on an astronomical level.  there is a Tim Horton's across the street to the north AND across the street to the east.  my direct manager leads a group of 3 people out every morning at 9am and returns with a minimum of ten coffees for various people in the office.  another group heads out at 3pm for the same thing.  based on my calculations, the general area where i sit spends approximately $30 a day on coffee over there.
these twice-a-day guys will often dump unnecessary amounts of money into this habit.  for some of them it's the status of a decent tasting cup of coffee at a decent price.  "at least i don't shell out $5 a cup at Starbucks!" for some it's just an excuse to go out and have a cigarette while "walking" or "getting some fresh air".  the twice-a-day guys are helpful because when they start stirring about you know you can put your feet up and goof off for the next 20 minutes and not get caught (well, if your boss is involved with the twice-a-day guys like mine is).
and then there's the sippers.  the sippers are often women in the office (sorry, not meant to sound sexist or anything) and they buy a coffee on the way to work, usually in the drive through.  they will take ALL DAY to drink the coffee purchased first thing in the morning; it's not uncommon to see one of their half-empty cups of coffee on their desk well into the afternoon hours - but that's not the only bizarre thing about it.  they will claim to have the same addiction as the twice-a-day guys, but will only ever have the one coffee and likely never finish it.  the most odd behaviour though is the transportation of this cup throughout the day.  for any meeting, movement around within the office or general chit-chat the sippers will always have that cup in their hand.  they will likely drink nothing from the cup during the entirety of the meeting/conversation/whatever, but they will have that cup with them.  about the only place the cup won't go with them is the bathroom - but i suppose that i can't really confirm that because i've never actually been into the women's bathroom.
it's almost as if the sippers want to be caffeine addicts, but because they can't handle it they at least go with the status of carrying the cup around.  it kind of reminds me of high school drinking parties - you'd see those two-drink-drunks walking around with that room temperature beer, wasted out of their minds and often talking about how much beer they've had.  everyone knew that they were lying, but nobody had the heart to say anything to their face.  it is much the same with the sippers, walking around with their stale, cold double-doubles talking about how they can't live without their Tim Horton's.
and between the sippers, the twice-a-day guys and all of the casual coffee drinkers, i'd say it's a ratio of about 50% of desks that you can walk past at any given moment and see a Tim Horton's cup.  my company consumes so much of their coffee that the local Tim Horton's actually makes charitable donations and supplies food and coffee when the company does fundraiser events.  it's such an odd place.


Tuesday, August 05, 2008

one week since you looked at me

the blisters have finally healed.  i kept trying to over-do it and ended up re-buggering them, but i'm finally used to my new shoes now.
oh, and i'm going to be going to the Stitch N' Pitch in Toronto tonight.  that's right, i'll be knitting (slowly) and watching baseball at the same time.  it's to be hoped that no sudden line drives get sent my way while i'm knitting, but it's been my experience that baseball moves slow enough that i should be able to manage both sports at the same time.
i've also noticed that despite my efforts to prevent it, i've still got a pretty good case of driver's tan going on.  i'm not sure how because my commute is now down to 1/10th of its original distance, but surely enough one arm is certainly darker than the other.  somehow i also managed to get sunburned on my neck this weekend, so for the next couple of days i will officially be a red neck.  yee haw.