mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Hell weeks....

Most industries have their busy seasons - tax accountants dread the time before April 15th, toy retailers know that they will be busy from Thanksgiving to Christmas, and candy makers know that they need to make a ton of fun-sized bars before Halloween.

If you are in the higher education business, the start of school is when things get hectic. At the college where I work, mid-August to mid-September is when things get crazy. You have 3000+ students coming onto campus, and an equal number of mostly part-time grad students. Throw in new faculty and staff, and building renovations that were scheduled for the summer and are getting finished at the last minute, and mad anthony is going, well, mad.

The last week and a half or so has just been a perfect storm of coworkers being out or on vacation, people making last-minute requests that should have been made months ago, needed items being backordered, and things otherwise just not working the way they are supposed to. The more I get done, the more I seem to have left to do. I don't remember things being this crazy in the past, but we have 3 major renovations that are being completed this summer, so that's contributed to the mess.

I've been trying to take on as many responsibilities as I can at work in the hopes that it will demonstrate that I'm a good employee. It doesn't seem to help... in fact, I realized today at one of our monthly all-hands meetings that our new CIO doesn't even know that I work for our department.. she asked my other two coworkers for a status update, despite that fact that I've been doing/organizing much of the multi-pc deployments that we've had to do lately.

Of course, there are good things about this time of the year. I'm scheduled to work every day labor day weekend, which is when students move onto campus. That is good, because I'm hourly, and that means 20+ hours of time and a half. Plus they may need additional coverage in the morning or evening, which means more overtime, which will help my financial goals. The bad thing about this is that I'm going to be doing phone support, which people for some reason seem to think I'm good at, maybe because I try to convince people to hang up on me rather than have me hang up on them.

In a few weeks, this will all boil over, I'll have more money in my savings account and fewer open work orders in my ticket queue, and things will be back to normal (or as normal as my life gets). Right now, though, I'm going nuts. I've found myself really stressed - snapping at coworkers, yelling at slow-moving drivers while I'm in traffic I even found myself beating up on my phone at work after getting stuck in a voicemail loop. It went something like this:

Voicemail: To reach john smith, press 1...
(madanthony presses 1)
that is not a valid name or selection. to reach john smith, press 1...
(madanthony presses 1 again)
Voicemail: that is not a valid name or selection. to reach john smith, press 1...
(madanthony presses 1 again, then picks up the phone and slams it on the desk several times)


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