Saturday, September 22, 2012

A Day of Firsts.

Well, what a day!  I walked 17 blocks from home to meet the Not In Our Town float to walk in the Oktemberfest parade.  I believe this was the first time I'd ever been in the Oktemberfest parade.  Then dad and I went to the General Store and looked at guns.  I held a couple Glocks, a Smith and Wesson, and a couple Rugers.  Then we stopped at a gas station near my house and I hot some hot chocolate to warm me up after walking in 56 degree, windy weather for two hours.  I had just been thinking last week how I'd never been in this particular gas station even though it's only a couple block from my house.

Then, after eating a couple tacos from Taco John's, we drove to Daryl's to snoop some more, and he offered to let us shoot a couple rounds downstairs in the indoor range.  I had never shot a gun before, and I have to admit I was nervous.  I almost said no when he asked, but I'm glad I didn't.  I shot five rounds from a Ruger .22, and 2 rounds from a 9mm.  I'm pretty pleased with the result.  Two in the black, but all on the target.  The lower hole on the black was my first shot from the 9mm.  If I was used to holding that weight in front of me, I think I would have done much better, but not bad for my first seven shots!

Then, after an already big day, mom and I drove down to the World Food Festival in Des Moines.  IT was interesting, but very crowded and I had little patience for it by that point.  The most notable foods we tried were Grilled Spam Musubi (below) and the Chicken Pelmeni.

Chebureki (top) and Chicken Pelmeni.

It is now 10:20 p.m. and I am exhausted.  It has been, however, a great day.

I want to shoot.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

My Name's Mat...Doormat.

Ok, so I've talked a little about what's going on at work.  There were basically three main employees; L the supervisor, M the 30 hr. a week associate, and moi, the full-time associate.  M quit two weeks before the end of the spring semester and L retired in June, though she was gone most of May.

Since then I have been, pretty much, the only employee.

Thank God I have Sharon, although only eight hours a week, I don't know what I'd do without her!!!  What it comes down to is this, that for several months now I have been on my own most of the time, and nothing gets done unless I do it; rephrase--I've been doing three people's jobs and not gotten paid a dime for it.  Now, I know what the logical answer is, don't do the other people's's not that simple.  It's like any business, there are day to day things that have to be done, and some things that are not my job have to get done before I can do the things that are my job.  (Besides, I'm the one who has to deal with the fallout of things not getting done, so I have to deal with it one way or another.)

I applied for the slightly updated position of Library Services Manager and was one of the first three interviews.  I knew that the only thing I had going for me was my four years in this library.  Unfortunately, in the past, we were not really allowed to grow or try new things in the library, so I had been doing pretty much the same thing for those four years.  So, I was not in the least surprised when they decided to offer to the other two, outside, candidates.

The problem started when my acting supervisor, the guy one step up the food chain, told me that there was nothing wrong with me, they just really wanted someone with more experience--understandable.  However, when I half jokingly/half seriously said "well, you never know, no one has accepted yet--you might be stuck with me" and he said "and we would be fine with that" things started to get messy.

Eventually, an offer was made to the first candidate which was declined.  (I knew going in to this that it was going to be a painful process because we don't pay anything close to competitive.)  Then, eventually, an offer was made to the second candidate--also declined.  This is when acting supervisor started to get a clue that the semester was now three weeks away and we had one employee.  (He hadn't hired anyone to replace M because they wanted the new Manager to do it, even though I said we need at least temporary help, and was told by another higher up that we don't do temporary help.

Guess what?  We do do temporary help, because we are now three weeks into the semester and everyone is pissed about the situation.

I was never offered the position even though they "would be fine" with me.  It was when they invited me to be on the search committee that I understood that they would not, in fact, "be fine with me" and I now had exactly zero chance.

Round two of interviews.

I sit in as a member of the committee and was not greatly encouraged by the interviews.  In fact I was downright disheartened.  The first one was not too bad, though I didn't feel he was the strongest candidate.  The last one, also on Skype, was an immediate no, and the middle one (the one face to face) was a very bright young woman--fresh out of grad school, no experience other than student or intern positions.  Here's where my heart busted into a million tiny, razor sharp shards--one of the committee members said "she'll grow into the position" when others said she had no experience.

This is when I knew that I could not be a part of this, as much I wanted input on my future boss, and even though I'm the only one there who really knows how our library works, for my health and sanity, I could not be a part of this.  It was too personal.

I couldn't it there and look at each candidate and think "why are they choosing to invest in them over me?"

So, I drafted a carefully, respectfully written email and sent it to acting supervisor and I copied it to the entire committee.

That's when acting supervisor asked me to come to his office.

I was unafraid.  What more could he do to me?  He couldn't fire me.  He was surprised, he said, by my email and the timing, and he was dismayed that I had sent it to everyone.  He said, personally, he would not have done that.  (I thought to myself, and??)  I said that I didn't want there to be any questions from anyone as to why I stepped down.  I also said later, when he again said he would not have sent it to everyone, that you never know--if he'd been through what I'd been through, he may have done exactly what I did.

I was fearless, I vented (respectfully), and I made peace.

I will not be silently abused.  I may not get compensated for all the extra work I have done, I may be stressed out, but they will not get the best of me!  I will not let them destroy my spirit. They will not win.

Next interviews are set for next Friday.

I won't be there. :)

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