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If I do get carried away by Donald Duck while wearing a straitjacket, you will know why...

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May. 18th, 2010 | 08:09 pm
location: Rebel Bunny Camp
mood: Rebellious Rebellious
music: Emilie Autumn, "Laced/Unlaced"

I had the most peculiar dream last night. I was having a mental breakdown because my cousin wouldn't stop tormenting me (at least, it was supposed to be my cousin, but instead of being Thai, he was black O.o and also much younger than he is now) and just driving me mad. Picking on me, jogging me, poking me, just being as fucking annoying as a person can be (he's not actually like that in real life either lol). Mum and Zak seemed sympathetic, but Dad laughed and wouldn't believe me when I said I was about to lose my mind. I warned everyone that if one more thing happened, I would snap, and then he did it again, so I opened my mouth and screamed the most DERANGED scream- it was long, and maniacal, and just plain unhinged, and then completely exhausted, I collapsed. Then Donald Duck wheelbarrowed me away to some mountain for lunatics while I was mumbling incoherently in a straitjacket.

But the thing about this dream that was so weird was the fact that when my alarm clock pulled me back to reality, I felt so drained- like I had actually just screamed that ear-splitting, jaw-unhinging scream of insanity and had actually collapsed. I know I don't normally feel particularly motivated or energetic first thing in the morning, but I had a period of time after getting up when I felt pretty tired, and really weird. I just had a weird feeling that dream was significant in some way, but I hope that its not somehow warning me about what seems the most obvious- that I'm really about to flip my lid.

I'm surprised that I didn't today. The bullshit at work has reached such a new height that I'm actually shocked at myself that I didn't burst into tears and then walk out never to return. In fact, I'm sort of grimly pleased that I've resolved to do something else- actually something- about said bullshit. You maybe thinking "oh what is it now?" but to just give you a little information before I go into detail, I will say this; people complaining about my medical condition has got to be some form of fucking discrimination.

I was having my Colleague Review today with Laura, and to be honest, it didn't go all that badly on paper. In fact, despite the fact I am now full of seething rage and distrust for most of my colleagues, even I have taken something positive from the review. I scored highly on every section and even where I didn't score so highly, it wasn't down to any sort of failure on my part, mainly due to lack of training and the fact that particular subject doesn't normally come under my job description (equipment configuration and all that). Laura wrote lots of helpful notes on my review sheet too.

Then before she started writing out the conclusion part of the review, she said we had to talk about some things.

Now, I won't lie as to do so would be stupid; my attitude toward this job (a job I've been working for 3 years and 8 months now, so not a short amount of time) has been very apathetic in the last year or so. I have completely stopped giving a rat's bottom about the twee customer services' crap, about what my colleagues think about me. I was bright and enthusiastic once, in this job. I still am from time to time, and it normally ends with me feeling like I'm an outsider. I have never intentionally tried to distance myself from my colleagues- except for when they've been hurtful towards me. I want to be friends with the people I work with, however, unlike friends, I can't choose who I'm working with- and while I can certainly be professional and civil to them, I can't make myself like people who I would never be friends with. The fact that I've spent years trying to be eager about my work, trying to be a team-worker and getting taken for granted and used as a dogsbody, the fact that I'm always exlcuded from the social part of the work atmosphere has disillusioned me to the team, and has made me very apathetic towards my job and the people I have to interact with. Today, I learned a lesson; Apathy Isn't Working.

As Laura started, my immediate assumption was "oh, I've been a bit down and moody since my trip to see Harry, happened last year and the year before that too, I get over it" (in fact, I later bought up the fact that I assumed that was what she was going to say, and she laughed and said "That's true!" but also didn't make a big deal out of it- she was actually very understanding about that!), but then it was to be told that members of staff have made complaints about the fact that I am "using" my diagnosed tendonitis of my right hand to "get out" of tasks and that I'm not pulling my weight.

I want to vent my sheer rage at that, as well as eloquently get across what happened, so I have to say this; Suck, my cock, you fuckers!

The one task that I ask not to perform is CLEANING THE MIRRORS! It is a task that, before my hand began to hurt, would take me 5 minutes to perform thoroughly, if uninterrupted. It is NOT a big task, but doing this job does cause me very unpleasant pain that stays in my arm for hours, and can even cause it to radiate up to my shoulder. However, I do not try to get out of cleaning tasks; I still sweep the floors, hoover the mats and mop the floors, and often times, I will be the person to do the majority (if not all) of those tasks.

So for someone to complain about me that I'm "using" a diagnosed medical condition to get out of one little job isn't even petty- its fucking pathetic and spiteful.

I actually have a doctors note. I told my doctor that the worst tasks that have a painful affect on my hand at work are normally cleaning tasks, especially cleaning mirrors. She offered to write me a note, and I accepted- as I've told both Janine and Laura, I'm not saying at all that I want to be exempt from ALL potentially painful tasks ALL the time, just when my arm hurts. Cleaning the mirrors is the one task that causes real discomfort though, so I haven't done it for weeks, in fact a couple of months. BUT! I used to do it EVERYDAY before my Ohio trip.

Laura said however that my doctors note says that my doctor has specified "heavy lifting" (which is stupid, because I told my doctor that heavy lifting wasn't actually an issue- believe it or not, when I'm lifting something heavy, it rarely causes pain at all, but tendonitis is like a repetitive-strain sort of thing, so it makes sense that tasks that actually focus on pressure on that hand hurt more- lifting things normally involves the body). If I get a new doctor's note, that will be ok, but I'm annoyed that my doctor messed up what I plainly said to her.

I am certain that Mags is one of the people who complained. She's the one who always moans shes got a million different ailments, and complains about them, but she has never once said to me that she has trouble doing a task. I had to clean the mirrors today, and she said "Oh, I didn't leave it for you on purpose" and the way she said it...hmm. Well, its most likely she complained at any rate, because she's one of the few people who I do cleaning with in the evenings. I tried to make a joke about the fact I was doing the mirrors "cack-handed"- it actually took me twice as long to do the job, and nowhere near as thoroughly though. I am actually fuming that some petty peices of shit have complained about this. I'm almost certain Gail is in on it to, because of her complaining about me not handing my note into the file last week. I think she was pissed that I said I couldn't help her set up some equipment that involved screwing and unscrewing some extremely difficult metal bolts and things- its SO painful on my hands, and I think she was just annoyed because she couldn't wriggle out of it. The thing is, although I now know what it is that's wrong with my arm, I don't suddenly start holding it limp and whining "I can't lift this duster, I have tendonitis"- fuck no! If anything, Gail has always been far lazier than me, and her only excuse is that she's grossly fat -_- She won't hurry to customers or the phone, but practically crawls her way there.

So yes, I am angry about that. I think it was Mags and Gail, because Laura implied that at least 2 people have complained, and said "the staff aren't happy about it".

Lets hope I don't fucking break my arm then, lets see how they manage that the lazy fuckers.

Next, she said that a couple members of staff have complained that I treat them like kids.

Instantly, I thought "Sophie".

Sophie is thick, and I have to dumb down what I say to her, because she doesn't understand. I don't intend to sound "kiddish", but if you're not used to speaking in a common way, it sometimes comes off like that. Heck, I think a lot of people who speak in a common tone sound patronising, unintentionally. And being as Sophie misunderstood "people with dyslexia are not stupid" as me making fun of her dyslexic brother, I don't think it would take much for her to think that I was speaking down to her or belittling her just because I was simplifying my speech. From what I remember, Laura said that the plaintive has accused me of not only speaking down to them like a child, but also bossing them around.

Thats so untrue, so I'm convinced its been a case of someone (either Mags or Sophie, and possibly Gail once again) fucking up on the till or something, and me trying to help correct it, and them misunderstanding my attempts to help a team-member as me trying to "get one over" on them. I was genuinely hurt by this, as hurt as I was by previous complaint although less angry. I've resolved not to dumb down my speech- if they feel stupid due to my choice of words then, than that's their problem. At least by trying to sound "common" I won't mistakenly put on a patronising tone. I can't think of time when it would have come off sounding like that, to be honest; I'm basically grasping at straws, going by the fact I know people who speak like that sometimes do sound patronising by accident. Sophie herself does. As I said to Laura, I am a team-player and always have been, and have always been praised on my team-skills, and I only want to help out my colleagues. I am also not bossy by nature, and don't feel comfortable delegating to other people. Although in recent months, I have looked down on certain individuals for personal reasons, I've never felt myself as being in a position higher than that of my colleagues, even though I'm basically senior to most of them. If a colleague asks for my advice, I'd see that as a colleague doing just that, but I never feel as though someone is looking for me to take charge- thats not my job, and also not my place.

And finally, one that has really rubbed me up the wrong way because it is completely untrue- Janine has told Laura that I have been disobeying her and not doing as told. I was really upset to hear that. I have never "disobeyed" anyone, not even Cassie! I WILL do as told- as I said a few days ago, if I'm told with an attitude, I will chew my bit and dig in my heels for a moment, because I hate it when people treat me that way, but I'll also bite my tongue and just get on with it, even if I am thinking evil things and less than enthusiastic about the task. If you come up to me and say "Laura, could you X for me please?" I will say "sure" and hop to it as soon as possible. I have NEVER refused to do something.

Janine has complained that she asked me to tidy ladies, and I apparently moaned "I've had enough of that!" and refused. It is likely that I did say at some point "Oh, I've done that so many times today" and then just done it anyway, but I would never have refused. If I have done that same job 3 times already in a shift, I'm likely to show little enthusiasm to repeat it. But I will never say no and not do it.

I am so upset that on top of me having to put up with Janine's mood swings, her weird temper and hypocrisy, I now have her making an untrue complaint about me. Heck, every single complaint raised today was untrue and unfair. I wish I could sit back and feel humble and just accept I've done something wrong, instead of feeling like I have a pit of writhing angry snakes for a gut, but I haven't done anything wrong. Fuck, is having tendonitis really something that I've done wrong? I said straight out to Laura that this is untrue, and that I can't think of where this is has come from (it didn't occur till later about the "common" speech, but I don't really want to try voicing that thought to her, in case I worded it wrong). Laura suggested that maybe a comment of something like "Oh I've done that so many times today" may have been misconstrued as refusal (but I did the job anyway!), and suggested maybe keeping those thoughts to myself- her words were "I know you're only trying to lighten the mood, but maybe its offensive to some of the staff?" I would like to know how its exactly offensive, me commenting on the fact that cleaning and tidying a single section of the shop 3 times in one day is something of a bore? Especially as everyone, everyday will complain at some point about the quietness/the mess/customers etc. Why is it that everyone is allowed to have a little bitch, and the moment a word of negativity leaves my lips, its complaining about Laura B behind her back?

I felt like crying. I felt utterly deflated and just sank in my chair thinking how I want to leave my job and how everyone is ganging up on me. I'm sure that's possibly a slight exaggeration, as I'm sure there are certain staff members who are not involved at all, and that perhaps some of the issues are more of a misunderstanding than anything else, but to have all this dropped on me, it really does FEEL like everyone is ganging up on me. How else am I supposed to feel when I hear that the staff think I'm not pulling my weight, and that I'm using my tendonitis to get out of work, when in fact, I do a lot of work? How else am I supposed to feel when everyone excludes me from conversations and things and I'm left in a corner, working alone?

I actually decided to take a risk and I said; "This is not me trying to flip the table and make this Janine's issue rather than mine, but you know...she's really moody too sometimes. I don't like to be near here when she's in a mood, and I don't even like to joke around her, so I just try to give her space. Perhaps this incident happened when she was in a mood and our wires got crossed- I do sort of avoid her, but I don't ignore her." I also explained to Laura about the time I actually called Janine up on her moods and how she apologised, and then I decided to tell her something I've never voiced at work before. I said; "When Janine first came here, I really didn't like her. But when I got to know her, I came to really like her, I really, honestly do, and I enjoy working with her, so it's upset me to hear this."

Laura said to this that she doesn't think Janine dislikes me or doesn't like working with me, but she seems to feel that I don't accept her authority as manager when Laura is not there. She says that she never sees these problems when she's around, but only hears about it happening when she's not present- she's of course obligated to bring it up. I just felt so CRAP, I felt so sad, like "well, what the fuck can I do then?"

She started drawing up a plan of things we're going to do- partly to get me up to date with equipment training and stuff, but also put down some team building stuff to be reviewed in two weeks. I've suggested having a chat with Janine; I want to tell her that I don't actually have a problem with her, and I want her to understand that, but if she goes into "professional" Janine, it could be difficult. Some other stuff.

To be honest, all I was thinking was "fuck this, fuck that". I had no intention at that point to do any fucking thing at all. I think it was mainly the tendonitis thing, but I was just thinking "why SHOULD I make an effort for these bastards? They just keep causing me problems, and making my life a misery, so why should I do anything for them? I don't even CARE anymore..."

And that's when I realised that not caring may not directly be causing the problem- no, the problems are causing the not-caring and it becomes a vicious cycle. Of course I'm not fucking model employer of the year if I feel so apathetic towards my workplace! But then it occurred to me- If I follow this plan, if I do make an effort, if I try to do my best, nobody can have a legitimate complaint against me (and even if they do, I'll have my progess to knock their argument flat with). I won't be doing it to make THEIR life easier- it'll be to make MY life easier.

So I'm going to try it. Even though I feel like spraying the fucking shop with bullets at the moment (maybe I'll ask Zak if we can spray some Special Infected with bullets in Left 4 Dead instead :D). I actually feel exhausted right now, but I'm hoping its just from the initial reaction of all this bullshit being thrown on top of me. I feel like crying and sleeping, but I do have a sort of grim motivation to do this now.

I said to Laura as we agreed on the plan, "I won't lie, I am really upset about this, I don't think this complaints are true or fair, and it really bums me out that whoever it is who thinks I'm the way they've decided thinks that, because I know I'm not. So I really would like to try and prove them wrong."

Laura seemed to think that was the spirit and I think she understand how this has gotten to me, so I do feel I have at least the minimal amount of support there.

Thats ALL I can do. Apathy didn't work. Making an effort may seem like I'm letting them win, but I'd rather do it to be a "fuck you" to them instead. If it ends up being a fruitless effort...well...I'll burn that bridge when I come to it...possibly with molotov cocktails in Left 4 Dead lol. But seriously, I'm hoping this works, because I have no fucking clue what else I can do. I tried working hard before and it just bitch-slapped me in the face.

I started as soon as the review was over. I went out and got all chatty with Mags (and if you make an effort with Mags, she often responds in kind), and went out and fucking super-tidied that damn shop and did a damn good job of it too. I was being really helpful and I personally think I was being the model employee. It kept me going right up until I got home. It didn't feel bad to do it either...I feel crap still, but mainly because of then review. I think Laura will try to back me up as well, if it looks like I'm making an effort. I can't promise to tug hooks into my cheeks and be the Zombie that the company would love, but I CAN make an effort. I won't lie- I have been doing my job, but I haven't been putting any motivation or enthusiasm into it for the reasons I already stated. But my sanity seems like a pretty damn good reason to make an effort, and if it keeps me from being carted off to Crazy Mountain by Donald Duck in a wheelbarrow, then I think it will be worth it.

Wish me luck, my freaky darlins.

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