Friday, December 21, 2012

I'm paying for this all day long

I do a fair amount of volunteering at the kids' schools, and I'm a Girl Scout leader. I save the class parties for other parents who have judgmental, perfect ways of doing things. The girl's class party was yesterday.

They had a gift exchange of a sort. Apparently, one of the moms had the bright idea to play that game where someone picks a random gift, opens it, next person chooses a random gift, but if second person doesn't like the gift, that person can "trade" gifts with someone who's already chosen a gift.

Did NO ONE see the combination of this game--that I've seen go poorly with ADULTS, resulting in bad feelings--and third graders could, maybe, possibly, end badly? Cuz as my sobbing daughter talked about how one girl influenced another to "steal" her gift, I had more than a bit of a clue.

These people HAVE kids, right?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Common courtesy--GONE!

I think we can all agree the times, they are TOUGH economically.  Here in this house, we're living that reality with our main breadwinner out of work.  Having still not recovered completely from his three year long stint of joblessness that ended only two years ago, any time of joblessness is to say, definitely unpleasant.  But I gotta say, the lack of common courtesy from employers is ticking me off.

Realizing that many people, in this day and age of instant gratification and the endless internet at their disposal, may apply for jobs they perhaps aren't truly qualified for, because, hey, it's only a click away, I get that not every inquiry will be acknowledged.  I even understand that phone interviews (of which Hubster has had at least three) that don't move to the next cut may not be acknowledged.  I think all the phone interviewers even said he'd only be contacted if he went to the next level.  Fine.  People are busy.  I get it.  But Hubster had one interview that went beyond phone to face-to-face.  It was a GREAT opportunity.  Good hours, stunningly close to home, working days, no weekends.  In short, I really didn't even expect he'd get it, it was just too perfect.

Hubster met, on this interview, the HR Flunky, HR Big, Warehouse Manager, and MR BIG BOSS.  It lasted over an hour, there was laughing, there was discussion of various scenarios.  It went as well as an interview could go.  Near the end, Big Boss let loose two facts, one that Hubster was Candidate Uno, meaning first interviewed.  Hubster acknowledged that could be good OR bad.  Big Boss then conferred with Warehouse Manager and HR Big, and said he'd be contacted EITHER WAY within about two weeks.  Excellent!  Hubster came home and emailed HR Big, thanking him for the interview, hoping to hear from him soon.

Two weeks came and went.  No calls, no emails.  Week three was Thanksgiving week.  Hubster called HR Flunky, leaving a message that he realized their time frame had passed, if there were any other info they needed, he'd be happy to supply it.  No calls, no emails. 

This is what burns me.  Multiple people committed to the "either way, we'll let you know" sentiment.  Even if they "forgot" to call him, his message to HR Flunky should have generated an email immediately afterward.  Given this day and age of email, three sentences could have both informed Hubster he was no longer in the running and stopped us from hoping.  In this day and age of people hoping to get jobs, wouldn't it be nice if those in charge of hiring exhibited common courtesy?  All I know is this company talked in the interview about how they were a "family company" but I just see them as a RUDE company.

Monday, December 17, 2012

I turned it off

I've done what I need to do, which is turn off the coverage of the horrendous tragedy that occurred on Friday.  I can't watch anymore.  I feel myself sinking into a place I know I wouldn't be able to easily get out of, a place that's unproductive and too sad to cope with my daily life.  I've tried instead getting all worked up over idiotic posts people make about "hey, if only we could pray in schools, all would be well" or the "guns don't kill people, people kill people" mantra the NRA likes so much that are floating around on Facebook.  The only thing that has resonated with me, instead, is a post that makes me sink deeper into sadness, that of the mom struggling with her son's runaway mental illness and the lack of options available to her.

This over-connection to sadness is something I've always had with horrific occurrences turned media events.  I found I had to turn off coverage of 9/11, university shootings, and I was nearly beside myself knowing Hubbster's aunt was down the road teaching at Columbine's elementary school, watching the ambulances roll by for catastrophic that event.  I've had to think what I would do if a gunman came into my classroom, and hey, I know intellectually my university is FAR less safe than any elementary school.  I know I've dealt with students who were, if I'm being 100% honest with myself, off their very serious big time meds and exhibiting behavior I was afraid of.  My colleagues have had stalkers and protective orders.  I've had people screaming at me in my little office with no one else around about the unfairness of a grade.  In the days before ubiquitous cell phones, students once called security (state police) over another student, male, aggressive, getting into my face, attempting to physically intimidate me.  The risk is there.  It's there every day.  But that's the risk for ME.  I take the risk because what I do is important, worthwhile, and necessary.

For my children?  I cannot let risk, let alone the assessment of possible risk into my consciousness.  I cannot assume they won't be coming through the door at the end of the day.  The thought alone is enough to send me to my bed, weeping and unable to cope.  That's why I cannot watch mothers and fathers on television emotions flayed, wailing their sorrow to God.  The risk assessment starts then, in my head.  If I even think it could happen to MY babies, I will be paralyzed with fear, and that will mean I'll paralyze my children with fear too.  That's not a life I want them to remember.

So in the months to come, I may argue the necessity of increased mental health services and need for gun control with others.  But for now?  I feed them breakfast, remind my kids to take their lunches, button their coats, tell them I love them and to learn something fabulous.  I send them out the door, expecting them to be home later, just like I do every single day.  It's the only way I can continue putting one foot in front of the other.

Friday, December 14, 2012

You've GOT to be kidding me!

Remember the impending head explosion of the boy? Remember how the Popcorn Kernel (I know, I KNOW) from Boy Scouts was supposed to release the name last week?  Did. not. happen.

The Hubster took the kids to the meeting, as I had a leader's meeting for Girl Scouts.  I was even texting during MY meeting to find out the results.  The results were simply that the dude now needed to check with council about when he could announce.  Ok, um, shouldn't that have been cleared up FIRST?!  Now, a week out from the whole debacle, Cubby seems to have forgotten for the moment.  That actually seems to be a theme in his life, more on that later.  I, on the other hand, have righteous indignation that we don't at least KNOW!  Ugh. 

I'd simply be off to read, since I'm officially done with grades, but my Nook is out of juice.  There is a downside to this electronic age.