Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Making Time

Picture 15

Being the environmentally conscious eco-freak that I am, I was pleased to note that my workplace recycles. There are bins for cans and other bins for bottles. Paper could contain private information, so most of that gets sent away to be super-shredded, but there are bins for non-secret paper, too.

There are even bins for recycling cellphones, which I think is very progressive. With most Americans ditching old phones every time their service contract is up, and the ability of the batteries to (I don't remember exactly so I'll round up here) kill every living organism within 1,000 miles if they leak, making sure these old and used up communication devices don't end up in the wrong landfill is important. It seems some of my coworkers get a little carried away with that, though.

I got an official Corporate Communication email yesterday instructing me to not use the bins to dispose of company-issued cellphones and pagers. Instead, unwanted devices should be returned to the purchasing department.
I guess the ground rule is "Recycle, but only recycle stuff which actually belongs to you."

Who knew?

I've been having a bit of fun training the new hires. I'm too new myself to get in trouble for being candid (since "Tact Awareness Training" isn't offered until after six months of employment) so I can just tell them the way things are from my point of view.

This morning I explained that while there is certainly a procedurally correct way to accomplish things, and that certain methods are arguably more right than other ways, rolling with the punches is the only way to maintain one's sanity. Especially with liquor not being sold at all during 14.285% of the week.

Sure, we can call attention to idiocy. And we should. But none of that alters a deadline. The trick is to make the failure to meet the deadline the fault of another department, then use the time to fix the process while our activities are on hold.

I like using hardware requests sent directly to purchasing or, better yet, issuing a Vendor Security Alert which must be mitigated by the people who sell us stuff and then tested by some other team I only know by email.

Asinine? Yes. But we all have our ways of getting things done. Instead of saving time, I choose to simply create more of it. In a sense, I alter the rules of the physical universe and cause a finite resource to create more of itself. From the ether I draw on the cosmic power of process to cause the quarks, leptons and neutrinos which compose all of the known universe to wake up in the morning with a feeling of dread which is not quelled by their tiny little infinitely miniscule cups of coffee and itty bitty bowls of cornflakes. A feeling which follows them on their ridiculously short commutes to work and leaves them cowering in twitching piles of tiny angst on the floors of cubicles even smaller than the ones they give I.T. people and isn't even kind of broken until well after lunch.

In short, I have looked Time itself in the face and made it my ever-ticking cosmic bitch.

Also, the cafeteria has sweet potato pancakes on Tuesday mornings.

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