A Series of First’s

Since June 4th I have been on a roller coaster ride of first’s and some lasts as well. Incase you missed it I got married back on June 4th. This is my first marriage and as far as I am concerned my last as well. To quote Luke Dane, “The 0nly way out now is in a body bag.”

Fast forwarding to a couple of weeks ago we purchased our first home. Short of a major promotion this will be our only home that we purchase as well. Full disclosure it was not our first attempt at purchasing our first home. That saga is a story for another time.

For the final first we have to rewind back to the tail end of January when my wife and I found out that we will be having our first child in September. This will not be our only child. Plans are to expand the clan out by at least 2 younglings.

When experiencing each of these first’s it was always a mixed feeling of sheer terror and boundless joy. Imagine Homer Simpson’s patented scream and “woo hoo” back to back if you will. I’m sure everyone that was or will be in my position can sympathize. Still trying to figure out how to “adult”, but soon will also have to figure out how to parent as well.

Voice Mail Greetings

Among the dozens of things that I have started noticing throughout my day especially when making one of the many phone calls that we do in the pharmacy is peoples voice mail greetings. Now I’m not talking about the automated system that tells you what to do and sometimes even that is just too much information, but the personal greeting that people leave.

When I call someone whether it be for personal or professional reasons and I get said persons voice mail I only want to hear two things, you repeating the number that I dialed if your carriers automated system doesn’t do it for you and your name. That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less. Anything beyond that is a waste of time.

To the people letting their children leave the greeting message stop it. Unless I personally know you I now have no idea if called the right number. Most of the time I can’t understand what your child is saying anyway.

The people who start talking like you’re actually there answering the phone and then punk me 7 seconds later, there’s a special place in hell reserved for you.

The biggest “no no” in terms of voice mail greetings is explaining to me why I shouldn’t leave a message because you don’t check and/or I should just hang up and text. For starters I now think less of you as a person and secondly if your receiving a call from lets say a professional contact how long do you think you’ll keep that contact. Also, there’s the assumption that I am calling from a phone capable of texting. So much for communicating to you the important information we have.

I could continue to site examples, but I think I’ve made my point with those three. I believe the acronym K.I.S.S. applies here. (Keep It Simple Stupid) Please refer to the two pieces of information I require from the beginning and we’ll all get along just fine.

Grammar Police

Normally I would just let this slide, but as an increasing number of people are feeling compelled to correct my grammar, punctuation, and or spelling on my personal social media. Let me spell it out real simple like for you “hero’s” of the written word. Stop it. You are not my teacher, boss, or mother.

When I am posting on my personal social media accounts I have no one to answer to other than myself. When I type a post I have little to no concern about how I spell or the punctuation I use and that’s assuming I use it. Most of the time I’m half-assing some random thought or just venting in general and have 30 seconds to throw a thought together.

If it’s some sort of email being shared among the pharmacies or going up the chain with corporate or a document that I am preparing for one of my classes that is vastly different. You are damn Skippy I will double check my spelling, make sure that I use correct word choice, and that I have correctly placed commas and periods.

This BLOG is meant to help express my own ad nauseam’s  and to a certain extent I don’t double check everything I do here. The caveat being is that since I am pushing this content out into the ether that is the internet and  I am looking to entertain and somewhat inform I try and get it together. If I am going to try and inform, persuade, or entertain I figure I had at least get it together enough so that I only look/sound like a second rate hack. Try and keep it a little classy.

Let me put a fine point on this. If what I type on my personal social media account bothers you that much because I fail to correct anything pertaining to spelling or grammar unfriend me right now. I could care less. The fact that you had to take the time and point it out speaks volumes about you. I could pontificate further about that, but since I value sleep Ill  leave it at this. Every time you bother to point my error out I respect you that much less.

Battle Damage

Recently the area in which I reside had experienced this seasons first significant snowfall. Shoveled a lot more of it than I cared to as well. With a significant amount of snowfall comes the bad driving conditions because even when at full turn out levels the state/county/city plow trucks wont be able to keep up. Inevitably, this will result in accidents because there’s always the guy who has to be on the road and in a hurry.  As my paint and body guy says, “winter will always keep me in business.”

As I drive from point A to B now I will see at least one person driving around with some form of damage. I understand that the body garage is backed up with work or more likely you have to wait for the part(s) to show up. I get it, I’ve been there. What I don’t get though, is why anyone would think that driving around with a bumper or quarter panel barely hanging on is a good idea. When my truck was damaged and I had to wait a couple of days for replacement pieces to show up I removed part of the front end. Let me explain why.

Vehicle manufacturers go through extensive research  in order to develop aerodynamics into their products. Once you compromise the outline or contour of the vehicle you sacrifice that aerodynamic flow and as a result the performance of the vehicle as well. Removing the damaged part will help restore some of that aerodynamic flow. Leaving the damaged part on the vehicle to potentially flap around while you drive is as good as having up to 20% of your breaks applied while driving. I could pontificate further about the wear and tear that is being exacted on your vehicle as a result of this, but I have other points to make.

Let’s meow examine this from a safety stand point. The DOT of the state in which I currently reside says  that the damaged piece only has to be secured to the vehicle. It does not define by the manner in which it has to be secured. I have seen everything from tie downs, zip ties, duct tape, come-alongs, and bungee cords being used to secure damaged pieces. This is a bunch of BS. Most of the time the damaged piece is improperly “secured” or the means by which it is being held quickly breaks itself and the driver of said vehicle is either igornant of the danger the are now to other motorists or just don’t give a damn.

Honestly I could care less if you want to screw up the performance of your own vehicle. That’s on you. Where I do take umbrage is when people drive around with something that equates to a drag chute barely hanging onto the vehicle. There is now the possibility that it could break off and at the minimum cause damage to my vehicle, but also cause an accident and injury to myself, any passenger I may have with me, and other motorists and their passengers as well. What I would like to see happen more often is police officers pulling these shmucks over and issuing them a safety violation similar to how they do to people who ignore a burnt out headlight.

 

 

Motivation

A variety of things motivate me to get things done. At current my inability to fall asleep is motivation to type this BLOG and work on a few other things on the interwebz so that I can hopefully fatigue myself into sleep,  but also have some prep work done for myself so that when I rise in the morning whether it be at my usual waking time or later due to the prolonged departure into dreamland I will either be ahead of the game or on schedule.

Let’s examine something else that helps me stay motivated in the face of irksome tasks and weighty responsibilities. There was a mantra that I learned a few years back the helps keep motivated. “If not you, then who? If not now, then when?” It’s mostly a self application thing for when it comes to work and personal things when I’m feeling unmotivated. In terms of work it comes down to I need to get said objective completed so that:

  1. I am not passing the buck on to someone else. I loath when someone does it to me so I am not going to do it to them.
  2. I am not screwing myself. When at the pharmacy sometimes I am all there is to get the task done so I’m either dumping more work on myself for the next day or later in the day. In terms of teaching it turns into me figuring out how to cram something in again either the next day or later that day and then potentially making some other part of my lesson plan suffer as a result.
  3. In the rare instance where I do have to pass the buck onto someone else my request to complete the task I couldn’t is not meet with chagrin, but instead with an acceptance. The person picking up the ball and running with it for me knows that all best efforts were made not have the shit kicked down hill to them, but are going to get it done anyway.

When it comes to getting my personal chores and other miscellaneous tasks completed I base things around a personal rewards system. I will set rewards out for myself in both the short and the long term. That way I am rewarding myself often enough that I’m not getting a gold star for every little thing, bur also so that I don’t have to ask myself why I’m putting such a prolonged delay on gratification.

These are just a few of my thoughts on how to stay motivated and are pretty much adaptable to most work and life situations. If my thoughts on the subject aren’t helpful then here’s FULL METAL JACKET’S Gunnery Sergent Hartman to help motivate.

I Don’t Like Change

Much like every other human being I am a creature of habit. Although I can easily adapt to a change in my daily routine every once in a while a deviation from the normal path keeps me lost in the woods for a bit. Today was one of those days.

When working in the pharmacy we have a lot of standard operating procedures (SOP’s) to help govern what we do, but to also keep us on a good work flow pace. Occasionally a wrench gets thrown into that, but we can normally adapt to that. Today however, I had to participate in a conference call in the middle of my shift in order to prepare for a project that I am attached to. When I finished with it I tried to return to my normal operations, but found myself kind of walking around with the constant feeling that I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to do.

In all reality I pretty much have most days planned out start to finish of what I am going to do. Just makes my life easier. Normally I just use my mental punch list of things that need to be done, but occasionally I will make a more complex list for myself just so I don’t get distracted and keep on grinding. At the same time though I also keep time built into my day to allow for the unexpected deviations that may occur. I also find it helpful to place assign a priority level to the days tasks just incase I find that I need to shelf or way lay something due to time needed to be dedicated to other tasks or again the unexpected getting in the way.

To illustrate my point here’s Stewie from Family Guy.