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Pure Racetrack

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[19 Jun 2011|09:42am]
I went straight from "nothing much is happening for me to post about to "way too much crap is happening I have no time to post".

About a month ago it got way busier at work. I immediately got pretty depressed because I hate being busy all the time at work. Of course we can hire more people (we did actually, he starts next week) but I don't really want to work for a big huge lab even if we have plenty of people, really. Actually I don't want to work for a lab at all but yeah.

Then last week Dr Li came in super early (11 am is super early for her) and called a lab meeting and announced that she's sold the company. Actually, what she said was that she was merging us with another small lab in the area which was a total lie. I swear the woman is a pathological liar, the company that bought us is based in Florida and they are huge (they own labs in 15 states for God's sake). The other lab in the area is a lab that they also own. Obviously this was a huge bombshell to drop on us and I'm still kinda processing the whole thing. Some of it is good maybe - I got a bigish bonus check (a month's pay) and some very nice compliments (I actually overheard her telling someone from the new company that hiring me was the best decision she ever made, so that was nice). On the other hand I just went from working for a company with ten employees to working for a very large corporation and...eh. I just don't like big huge companies, my feeling is that the bigger they get the worse they get in general and the more impossible it becomes for them to treat their employees (not to mention customers) right.

So there's that.

And this past week I was down two part time employees and because we're already understaffed this was...very bad. I had to fill in for both of them essentially. And of course one works very early mornings and the other works the two busiest nights of the week. I have basically done nothing but work and sit on the couch like a zombie for over a week now.

In other news, my dog ate half a bag of wasabi almonds and to quote someone else on the internet who had the same problem "now my back yard is covered in almonds".
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[08 Mar 2011|10:23pm]
I am so frigging smart!

I think I mentioned it already but Pine and I joined a community chorus. I did this partly because I actually used to enjoy singing (something I forgot for a few years) and also because I thought it might be a good way to sort of network, you know...get to know people who are into music in the general area and maybe drum up some piano tuning business. Three weeks in and someone actually brought up getting the practice piano tuned so I went right up to the director and introduced myself and gave him my card and offered to do it for free. I didn't want to step on anyone's toes in case they already had a tuner but this week they said they totally want me to and they really appreciate it and they'll put my name and info in the concert program! Free advertising!

Now I just have to not...totally screw it up. That is one damn small ass junky piano. Ah well. The thing about piano tuning is 90% of the pianos that exist in the word are kinda shitty junky really hard to tune pianos so you just gotta deal with that.

In other news, there's a dead garter snake at the bottom of my basement stairs. I don't even fucking know.
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Nnnnghhhhh [01 Mar 2011|01:38pm]
[ mood | worried ]

Ok, so, last night I checked my phone before going to bed (yeah, I'm not exactly one of those tied to the phone people, frankly I'd be thrilled if all phone communication were outlawed in favor of email or something) and the guy from the mortgage holding bank had called back. This time the actual words he used were "upcoming changes to your loan".

So I've called him three times today and can't get through. While I freak out.

What kind of "changes" could this be anyway? My rate is fixed so it can't be that. What else could it be?

EDIT: I finally tracked him down and he's offering me an interest rate reduction that'll lower my monthly payment. Why on earth would you leave a message that makes it sound like some inevitable changes are happening!? Unless you wanted to freak me out and get me to call back. But seriously, WTF.

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[28 Feb 2011|11:29am]
I messaged Sok last week when I heard about the earthquake in NZ - I know she's moved to London but you know...still. Anyway, she said she'd update on Monday if I did so here I am!

Lots of things have been going on but nothing too huge. My birthday is Wednesday and now I have to renew my license, ugh. I think MA has closed about 80% of the RMVs so now there's huge lines and wait times at all of them, it's a nightmare.

Pine and I joined a community chorus. It's been fun, I forgot that I enjoyed singing so much. I thought it would be good for networking too and last week they mentioned that the piano in the practice area really needs tuning so I volunteered to do it for free (I know the chorus can't afford to pay for that, I figured it would look good though. You never know who else might need a tuning).

It's snowed so much this year that the entire end of the street I live on is covered in a huge eight foot high pile of plowed snow. (I'm the last house on a dead end street which usually I LIKE since there's no traffic going by).

Been knitting a lot, I'm especially excited about making something for the current batch of Whorebabies. Also there's TWO people at work who are pregnant now (it's going around I guess) although I don't know if I'll make something for them. I only really like one of them. I've also finished one and a half sweaters, three stuffed toys, and half a pair of socks so far this year.

Work is ok but I still hate it. A few weeks ago our office manager came in and asked me for a copy of the lab practices manual which is this 100+ page book documenting a procedure for every single thing we do in the lab. I wrote it myself since the one we had when I started working there was a total disaster. I asked him what he wanted it for and he literally just acted like I hadn't spoken at all. He would not tell me. He took the whole thing and photocopied it for god knows what reason. I mean, what is that? I'm fucking chopped liver at this job, it drives me nuts.

On Friday I got a phone message from someone at the bank that holds my mortgage saying he wanted to chat with me about "some changes to your loan" which gave me several hours of minor panic attacks. I mean, what are the odds that the changes are gonna make it less expensive, right? Then on Saturday I got a letter in a FEDEX envelope for some reason and it turns out the whole thing is an offer to refinance. Come ON, couldn't you just say that on the phone? Sheesh, I almost had a damn heart attack.

So yeah, that's my life right now. How are you all?
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[01 Nov 2010|05:37pm]
I'm feeling rather productive this week. I knit almost to the heel on the second of a pair of nice plain socks, I did quite a bit of spinning (Have I mentioned that I've been spinning? I got a little "learn to spin" kit with a spindle and a DVD for a present like...two Christmasses ago, only I just started actually doing it in September. It's addictive as HELL). And I nearly finished one of a pair of handwarmers for a friend, would have actually finished them but I want to try them on her first.

And, I sewed a coat for my dog. Here, have a picture:

Doughnut coat

He really does hate the cold, so it's sort of appropriate. I'm stinkin' proud of it, even though it needs a little more work, because I just kinda made it up as I went along. Also it's goddamn adorable.
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Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha [28 Oct 2010|09:52am]
[ mood | crazy ]

It already broke. The goddamn thing broke. We got it Tuesday and didn't evne start using it till yesterday and this morning it broke! AHAHAHA.

I'm seriously this close to busting out in manaical Joker laughter. Because the only other response I can see myself having is calmly getting in my car, calmly driving home, calmly putting my crowbar in the trunk, calmly coming back to work, and then busting the thing into a million billion tiny pieces.

Maybe I'll even get a few whacks in on the old coverslipper before the cops come.

UPDATE AHAHAAHAHAHAHAH. She just told me it probably is only broken because "We're not used to it". Meaning, "you're dumb and broke it dummy". LOL OH GOD I HAVE TO GET OUT OF THIS JOB.

Also: she bought halloween candy baskets for all our clients, but nothing for us, and the office manager felt bad so he used his own damn money to buy more of the same baskets for each of the employees, and she yelled at him for it! Just because she is a huge bitch. What other reason could there possibly BE?

UPDATE NUMBER 2 ahaha I was just getting ready to call tech support and I figured I'd start the machine again so I could have the exact error code to give them and it worked perfectly. Isn't this a cultist technique?

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[26 Oct 2010|01:16pm]
You know what's a bad sign? It's a bad sign when the guy who comes in to set up the demo unit for the new equipment you're buying at work keeps complaining about what a goddamn pain in the ass that piece of equipment is.

I TOLD Dr Li it was an annoying machine but noooooo, she wanted the cheap one. Fagaduh.

I mean, it's better than doing it by hand. Um, so far.

Seriously, the other machine we had that used to do this thing broke three weeks ago and the exact same week it broke all of a sudden we're getting 200+ block days (almost 250 on Saturday) and I'm hand coverslipping almost 600 slides a day and it's making me want to die. Like, more so than my job usually makes me want to die. I mean, jeez.
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For the love of little puppies and kittens [07 Oct 2010|07:23am]
We do this thing at work, where every stain we do on however many patient slides, we add in a positive control slide (something that will stain positive for whatever it is that you're looking for on the patient tissue, so you can be sure that the stain worked right and you didn't get a negative result on the patient tissue by accident instead of it being actually negative). Drs are supposed to check these slides every day and sign off on them. They haven't been doing this.

We were inspected last month and the inspector made a HUGE STINK about it. We had to do this whole "action plan" thing showing how we were gonna fix the problem, etc. etc.

So now every day I give one of the doctors a single sheet of paper, with the names of each stain I did on one side, and a spot for them to check off that it was ok, and a spot to write in if something was wrong, and a little spot for them to put their fucking initials on it. At the absolute most, we're talking about less than five minutes a day to fill this thing out.

And the last two days I get one doctor neglecting to put his initials on, and the other neglecting to put a little check mark in the "worked ok" column. Jesus God, HOW HARD IS THIS. HOW HARD. HOW CAN SOMEONE WHO WENT TO EIGHT YEARS OF MEDICAL SCHOOL BE SO STUPID AND LAZY?!

Man, when the inspector comes next year and there's a whole goddamn year of improperly filled out forms I just don't even know what I'm gonna do. I'm not responsible for my actions though, I'm telling everyone this right now.
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[28 Sep 2010|11:00am]
[ mood | grumpy ]

So I had yet another dentist appointment this year (my...sixth so far? Holy crap no wonder the insurance ran out). It was a (free) consult with the orthodontist. They made me wait over an hour for an appointment that lasted - not an exaggeration - less than ten mintues.

Annnd, she says first "you definitely need braces" and then "but the braces will probably pull out some of your teeth so that will mean you need implants afterwards".

Um, no thanks I think. Jeez. I'd rather have nothing done than pay for braces which last a year and a half and hurt a lot and lead to more implants than I already need. WTF. I'm already thinking I'll just cancel the follow up consult with the dentist and the ortho, I just can't see any reason for it. That's ridicuous.


Meanwhile today is stressful. A very key piece of lab equipment was acting up last week and the week before, although it was definitely USEABLE. So I called our maintenance guy to come look at it, which he did yesterday, and now it doesn't work at all. THANKS GUY. Good friggin' job, I am thrilled with your high quality service.

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WTF. [22 Sep 2010|07:46pm]

Spent an hour trying to find a place that's less than ten minutes from my house (less than five if it had been where they frigging SAID it was). I say goddamn!
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[19 Sep 2010|09:36am]
Oh my gosh, what a week I've had.

Sunday after my piano lesson I drove up to Rhode Island* to meet up with some relatives I haven't seen in several years. Well, one relative. She's my dad's cousin and she lives in Arizona so obviously we don't see each other too often. She specifically really wanted me there because she just bought a piano and wanted to talk about it and so on. It was fun (and interesting, she's into family ancestry and the like, so I got to look at my family tree back to the 1700s), but it was also exhausting.

Monday is usually my day off but I had to go to work to get ready for inspection (AGAIN). We JUST had inspection, but in the last few months or so they've split federal and state inspection into two separate things. Of course, if they do the second one within six months it's a much easier process for US, but they won't do that because they get less money if they do it that way (assholes).

Tuesday was the actual inspection, and holy SHIT you guys. There was one thing, one major thing that became a problem. My boss hasn't been signing off on quality control slides. Between you and me she doesn't even look at them 99% of the time, but the important thing is there's no piece of paper anywhere saying "I looked at these and they were acceptable". Something that should be documented EVERY DAY. And when the inspector discovered this and brought it up, my boss FLIPPED THE FUCK OUT. She took it to mean this lady was saying "you don't look at the slides" not "you haven't documented that you look at the slides" and they basically got into a huge argument. I mean, voices were raised. It was fucking insane, and embarrassing to watch, and stressful.

Wednesday I felt like I was coming down with the flu. I guess I didn't since I'm fine now, but that wasn't fun either.

Thursday was super busy at work plus I had to go put some new strings on a piano I tuned a while back and then fix some notes that went funny after I tuned it and holy crap it took forfucking ever and was really hard and awful. Plus another string broke while I was tuning it up (not my fault but annoying as hell since I JUST replaced three goddamn strings). I don't think I've made a very good impression on that particular client at all.

Friday was super busy at work again.

Saturday was super busy at work also.

God I'm tired.

*Why do I always say "up to RI"? It's SOUTH of here. Yet I can't help myself.
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[01 Sep 2010|06:10pm]
So who all else has a Dreamwidth? I set one up because this latest thing with LJ is so beyond ridiculous I don't even know what to say about it. I've been pretty resistant to change all this time but...yeah!

Anyway, I'm wereleggo over there cause I have literally not a single drop of creativity left in me for coming up with internet user name things. It's sad, seriously.
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[29 Aug 2010|04:04pm]
So, in case any one was wondering what the proper procedure is for when you've locked yourself out of the building at work while your car is in the parking garage and it's late on a Saturday night so no one else is around, here you go:

Step 1: run around the building saying "fuck" approximately every other footstep
Step 2: try all the doors even though you know damn well they lock automatically. Maybe they forgot this time?
Step 3: run around the building again in the opposite direction, as in step one but change it up and say "shit" this time.
Step 4: notice that there's one other car in the parking lot and a light on somewhere on the second floor, throw pebbles at the window hoping they will hear you, investigate, understand your miming "I'M LOCKED OUT HELP" and not think that you're a crazy person/armed robber or anything.
Step 5: curse the stupid apparently deaf people working on the second floor.
Step 6: try all the doors again, only pull REAL HARD this time because what if they're not locked, what if they're just, like...stuck?
Step 7: Stare really hard the the iron grates of the parking garage. Wish you had thinner arms.
Step 8: Attempt to pry open the garage door grate thing, with vivid images of yourself half way through when it falls on you and kills you or (worse) pins you to the ground for hours until one of the stupid (apparently deaf) people from the second floor find you.

So yeah. That was my Saturday night. Luckily it turns out that if you pry the garage door style grate thing open about a foot, it will simply give up and start moving by itself. Good design!
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[24 Aug 2010|05:55pm]
Just got back from the dentist for round two of CavityFillathon2010. Phew. He did the upper ones and that was fine, I couldn't feel a thing. But then he started working on my wisdom tooth and apparently those are on separate nerve systems or...something. Anyway I immediately stopped him and said "You gotta give me another shot there, pal".

Ugh. If someone could invent a tooth filling that doesn't taste and smell horribile for the first few hours I would pay extra for that.

This week is going to suck at work; my one full time employee is on vacation. Oh well, I need the overtime anyway.
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[13 Aug 2010|07:37am]
[ mood | aggravated ]

Grr. We have a New Doctor at work and the dude is driving me fucking crazy. All of a sudden EVERYTHING we do just. isn't. good enough! Can we order fifty new stains? It is suddenly very important even though we have somehow been managing to diagnose every patient without them for three years. I like this one better even though it's much more complicated for you to do. Can you start doing stains upfront on 30% of the slides? That would be easier. I mean, it's very important for the clients...yeah, that's it. They're all just about ready to drop us if we don't do that starting RIGHT NOW. No it's ok if you miss some. I mean wait, no it isn't, every time you miss some I will come into the lab and be kinda dickish about it.

Hi I'm a pathologist and I talk to everyone who isn't like they are a small mentally slow child. I'm every pathologist ever. I drive a car that is both a Lexus and a big ugly SUV because I'm stupid and make too much money! I don't like being around my kids so I'll come in two hours early no it's ok if there isn't anything done yet but do you have anything for me to do? SIGH IT'S SO HARD BEING A PATHOLOGIST.

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[08 Aug 2010|03:16pm]
My piano teacher asked me to help him with his laptop today. It's that typical situation where he is of a generation of people (actually probably the generation before that one even) who never used computers until they were already grown and consequently view them as basically magical boxes and think anyone who knows one thing about them is a computer genius. Which I most certainly am NOT, by any stretch of the imagination...

Anyway. He's having issues with .pdf files, mainly that once he opens one a big box pops up and demands that he either a. pay some subscription fee or put in a password or something or b. 'quit' which of course closes the file before you have a chance to look at it. I THINK the problem is that he has two versions of adobe acrobat on there - one is "Adobe 8 Professional" and the other is just "Adobe 9". The pop up thing is definitely coming from Adobe 8 Professional. Could it be that having two versions is the problem and getting rid of the older one will fix it? I tried to uninstall Adobe 8 but it sort of stopped proceeding about halfway through.

Anyway, if anyone has any idea I wouldn't mind hearing it! If not it's no big deal.
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[06 Aug 2010|01:15pm]
We have two doctors here at work, most days anyway. Dr B and Dr S*. This morning I got a phone call (at 6 am) from our office manager, saying that yesterday Dr S "took almost everything" from Dr B - like walked into his office and took it right off his desk - and Dr B had nothing to do most of the day and he was pissed about it, so can I come up with a solution.

Yeah, I can. How about we just fucking tell Dr S not to do that. Is that good enough? Oh, it isn't. You want me to take the time to figure out how many case numbers we have for the whole day and give 60% to Dr B and everything else to Dr S and somehow I have to coordinate all of that with what times those slides are ready AND when I have the paperwork ready to put with them AND what time these doctors show the hell up (almost never the time it actually says they will on the schedule). And somehow all of that will prevent this guy from walking into the other guys office and taking more stuff from him if he wants to.

Makes sense to me!

*I refuse to believe their initials being "BS" is a coincidence.
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[31 Jul 2010|09:48am]
I am so ready for July to go the fuck away. This has been the hardest month of the year by a LONG shot. It's been fucking hot as hell, I haven't been sleeping, work has been by turns annoyingly slow and crazily busy, I ran out of money COMPLETELY a bunch of people got my hopes up about buying the piano and then PUNKED OUT ON ME I haven't been losing any weight all goddamn month and the house is a goddamn mess and I can't even get up the energy to clean it up because of all that other crap and holy shit just go away July.

I mean, it hasn't been 100% bad - and I'm sure lots of other people had worse months, but for God's sake. Bring on August! I will make August my bitch.
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[26 Jul 2010|04:15pm]
At least one person wants to make an appointment to come see/play the piano I am trying to sell. And another has emailed twice about it, plus another person just emailed today. I just replaced this one bass string that has been broken for a long time because I didn't want to have to tell potential buyers that it was missing a string and maybe have to take money off the price. I hope I did it right! It looks ok, we'll see how it sounds when I tune it again tomorrow. (When you put a new string in a piano you bring it up to pitch and it pretty much goes right out again, plus it affects the pitch of the strings around it, pianos are under IMMENSE pressure from all the strings - something like 30,000 lbs. This is why they have cast iron plates!)

Please say a prayer or sacrifice a goat or whatever you do that someone will buy it! I need that money. Plus once I have the space freed up I can find a little piano that someone is giving away free and practice fixing all manner of things that are wrong with it. This piano I'm selling is too nice to practice repairs on. :)

Started week 6 of Couch to Five K. After this week it's just all running, no walking breaks ever again. Yikes!
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[20 Jul 2010|09:14am]
For some reason I feel like I am slowly getting a handle on life after a few years of being dragged behind it with a rope around my neck. Of course, this is me we're talking about so just saying that probably means that the house will get hit by lightening tomorrow or I'll get cancer or something.

One thing that is definitely not going well right now is sleeping. I just feel like I haven't been well rested in weeks now. It's probably the heat. I've really got to figure out a way to take a nap while I'm at work!

I've been getting a few calls here and there about piano tuning but nothing seems to pan out. Just yesterday I got one where this lady wanted me to fix a keyboard. Sorry lady, I am not an electrician, you know? And a few other people have called but seem to think I'm asking too much money or whatever (I am not, I assure you - I'm asking less than most people, but not a huge amount less). Sigh.

Edit: Oh my God, MsA - "I'm afraid what I've done has somehow forfeited the right to ever have more contact with him than a two-second conversation in an autograph line."

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