Saturday, May 26, 2007

Have a Happy Weekend

And thank you to our veterans, living and dead.

If you've been to Pat's Pond, you know that I worked a double shift last night. We are extremely short-handed, so I will be working the holiday.

Thought I'd list all the lovely sensations I experienced last night. Keep in mind that I grocery shop for two hours every Friday before I rest for work:

4pm--the classified pagination is not prepped: that person (and her backup) are out on bereavement and maternity leave, respectively. Class pagination is my supervisor's job, but he always takes two weeks this time of year.

6pm--the phones start, because we are already two hours behind. Am still prepping my class ads. Now we need to start them, ready or not. All night we will be re-prepping the class, over and over, because the system is overloaded and spitting the ads back to us.

7:30pm--finally put out the Obituary listings, because that is not tied to the unprepped ads.

8pm--now it is clear that the very late ads are not going to appear on the pages. And everything is running very, very slow. Somebody felt we would not need cable to run from Johnson City to Elmira and back. The delay is now killing us: we are prepping an extra day's class to cover the holiday.

9:30pm--turned in the Saturday class, two hours late. Stop to handle other overload related problems associated with the transmissions of pictures for editorial content. My neck is tingling so badly, I keep looking over my shoulder to see who is touching me.

At this point the fans, which we are using because the air conditioning is dead, are not cutting it. The numbness in my feet and legs is turning to dysaethesia instead. My legs are twitching and spazzing at weird intervals.

11pm--it is beginning to dawn on me that I will not get home by midnight. I estimate 2am.

12am--begin to work on the prepping for the Monday and Tuesday class. Ask a coworker to stay 1/2 hour. That poor fellow works two jobs and has joint custody of his three kids. After 45 minutes I send him home.

1:30am--realize that 3am will probably be more like it. I am now in the zone and must be careful to pay close attention to the details, because I can no longer pay attention. Then I remember a small chore that doesn't usually go well in the best of circumstances. These were not the best. Next hour spent doping out how to ship a small advertising sheet that is in a very, very, very old format. Our printers keep sending me a letter sized printout. I need tabloid.

3am--maybe I will make it home by four.

4am-practically levitate to the ceiling when a truck driver drops a bundle of papers on the table in the back of the room.

5am--finish the Tuesday classifieds, by killing an inhouse ad that I have been warned "absolutely must run." It doesn't fit and I can't change the position. Client ads take precedence, so screw the marketing department. Screw them, screw the horse they rode in on. Screw everyone and their pets, all fast asleep at home.

5:30am--go home, too wired to sleep, too exhausted to eat, too dumbed out to read the paper.

And who wants to read the paper after working on it all night?

Little Pond

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