Friday, 28 February 2014

#059 Caffeine FrustraShawn

In these times of fiscal cut backs, lay-offs and austerity measures at the office we received an inter-office poll today. We were asked the following question:

- How many cups of coffee do you drink at the office per day?

I replied with "None, except between mid November to Late January, when I have 2-3 per day."

I asked the person that was managing the poll what was going on?  She said many people have been complaining about the *FREE* coffee, that they have been requesting the office get a K-cup brewing system. 


Now, for the record we have a coffee machine with two thermal carafes (because people couldn't agree on one type of coffee). And this is premium coffee here, it's not cheap by any stretch of the imagination. 

People are being laid off, but what  people are complaining about is the coffee... that we need a fancy, over priced, environmentally wasteful hunk of junk. 


I said to the person that, "Whatever numbers people give to you , you should double or triple...",  because it will be a new toy and the kids in this office like to play.

And then she said something to me that really blew my mind, she said, "That's not what concerns me, I'm worried about people stealing the cups to take home and use them there." 

I was floored, but she had a very valid point. Those cups cost a fortune and I can so see some individuals pocketing a cup or two every day or so.

I said one more thing, "I personally don't want one in the office, It's a waste of money and if people aren't happy with the *FREE* coffee they have now they can go to the Starbucks across the street.  We're trying to save pennies, literally pennies here every day, and these people want to waste money on over-priced coffee cups. Pathetic."

She said, that she agreed with me 100%, but that the General Manager asked her to look into cost. (the genius behind other such great idea as lay off 3 hard working, long time employees, and then 2 weeks later hire a new Director for the Finance Department, to personally assist her.)

So help me, if this happens I will throw such a hissy! 

Thursday, 27 February 2014

#058 Paper Crime Scene InvestigaShawn

If P.C.S.I. were a TV show, my office desk would be ground zero for tonight's episode.

I swore yesterday I wasn't gonna bitch and moan about work... but OMG! Today, OMG!

Seems the Auditors will be back next week and so they sent a few requests on Monday (20 examples in total) that they wanted documents for when they arrive next week.  Invoice and Shipping Docs.

Then on Tuesday they added another 10 examples, and another document (Proof of Delivery) for all 30.

Then yesterday they added another 30 examples (total now of 60)

And then today, as I was collating the last 4 examples, they said they didn't want Shipping Docs and PODs.  They wanted Proofs of Payment.

Thanks for that.

So I've now printed over 2500+ pages, and approx 1000 are now not needed.

Fortunately we have a rule of re-using single printed pages for anything internal and 'scrap' pages are used to print needed documents when they will only be used internally.

Of course everything that got printed for the Auditors was on fresh paper, as we do not want any used pages going out with any info other than what they require.  Thankfully those 1000+ wasted pages WILL be used again, but at the end of the day it was a WASTE of paper!   Not to mention the time wasted, not just by myself  but 2 other people in Finance here and 6 people at our other offices across Canada.

So yea, my desk looks like a cyclone hit a filing cabinet, stacks of paper everywhere. It's basically a crime scene of wasted toner and paper.

I'm sorry Trees. I did not mean to diminish your existence. I swear we will re-use every last page you provided.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

#057 InspiraShawn

I literally cannot think of anything to write about. Today was a wasteland of crap.

I just don't have it in me to kvetch again about delays and shutdowns on the Montreal Metro System. 

I would rather have bamboo splinters shoved under my fingernails than talk about the bullshit that is my workplace and the fact that a box of hair could clearly manage it better.

The Olympics are over.

I am behind on a Tin Whistle lesson.

We've been eating more old school lately - KD with chopped up hotdogs.

No great dreams in a few days.  (I blame only 6 hours sleep a night on that.)

I've got nothing.

I need inspiration, but it alludes me today...

So instead, please forgive me, I'll just have to leave it here, and give you this adorable photo of a fluffy bunny in the snow.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

#056 CorrecShawns

Remember yesterday, when I said, “Now if cleaning up all the errors my co-worker made in the past two weeks was as easy… ”

Yea, that.

I don’t know why some employees remain when others are laid off.

I think, that if the Dept had just been closed down for the two weeks I was off, and I had to deal with all the orders for those two weeks now; that I’d be so much farther ahead of the game.

It boggles the mind, no, it boggles the soul. 

We’re all of us human, and we’re going to make mistakes. To be sure, I've made my share, but in the last two years alone I haven't cost the company near half a million dollars in errors. Why that person is still there, I do not know. Respect and sympathy for a person’s age should only get you so far. 

When I come back from vacations I shiver at the ineptitude I discover over the following weeks, if not months.  And so far, 2 days back I've had to process 4 credit/rebills, I've found 2 incomplete orders and 1 missed order.


Monday, 24 February 2014

#055 Ctrl-Alt-DeleShawn

While I was off for the past two weeks, the emails in my office inbox were piling up.

The raw stats are this:
Period: February 10th to 14th and February 17th to 21st.
Emails received: 667
Time to download the email approx 40 minutes.
Emails Deleted: 555
Emails requiring attention: 112
Emails requiring a reply: 57
Time until the last email was answered (including d/l time): 2 hours 24 minutes. 


I love taking time off, I HATE having to sort through email.  Over time I’ve created a quick strategy that allows me to blow through the madness.

1) Open a  preview pane open in inbox.
2) Sort by sender.
3) Delete by sender. (with 99.9% accuracy, I can delete tens if not hundreds of emails in an instant solely by who sent me the email. There are a few exceptions to this but with a quick review of Subject Line or the preview pane and I can keep it or chuck it with no time wasted.)
4) Once all of the deletes are made I keep the sort ‘by person’ and with 3 sub-folders I sort whose emails are “High Priority”, “Medium Priority”, or “Low ‘I’ll get back to you when I get back to you’ Priority”. *
5) Then I go into the individual sub-folders, sort by date and answer.

* Basically, My immediate Boss or higher is “High Priority”. "Medium Priority" are from my co-worker on issues t from my clients that she was unable to resolve. "Low Priority" are all the clients that  would have received my Auto-Responder stating I’d be off for two weeks but did not resend to our departmental mass email address (that I’d also receive a copy of, thereby knowing if they followed the correct procedure to ensure they’d get a reply.)

I have a standard opener for my replies to the Low Priority group, it’s basically… “Thank you for your email. As stated in the Auto-Responder you would have received when you sent your email, I was on vacation for the past two weeks. Your email is only being responded to now because you did not forward your email to the correct address (XYZ@WHEREIWORK.COM)...

Some people never learn, but I feel that no case is hopeless, so I’ll remind you how hapless you really are. ;-) Overall though,  I have to say that my clients are learning.  I only had 3 Low Priority emails this time. (I recall about two summer’s ago it was more like 30).

Now if cleaning up all the errors my co-worker made in the past two weeks was as easy… 

Sunday, 23 February 2014

#054 Golden Accolade and Alien InvaShawn

I've done it.

I won Gold at the 1st Sleep Olympiad.

To be honest it should come as no real surprise... I was the only competitor.


A side effect of all the extra sleep and my overall restfulness of the past two weeks has been increased dream activity.  Most of it was just the repetitious dreams each night that would continue after I'd wake up in the night and just continue on once I got back to sleep. 

To be honest most were hardly news-worthy, and not worth repeating. Most I could delve into lucidly after waking up and going back to sleep two or three or four times during the night. All except for one night. Last night...

It was a long standing re-occurring dream I'll have once every year or so. I've been having it now for a good 15-20 years. I've never really taken that much notice of it, recorded dates or times. Which, all things considered, has me kicking myself in the pants for that now.  I have other re-occurring dreams but this one is different.

This particular dream vary somewhat over time. What remains the same is the fact that it is about an alien invasion of Earth, and they always take place at home (Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia). While other re-occurring dreams I have will be set in different locations, the Alien Invasion one is always at home. 

The other facts that remain the same are:

The invasion comes out of nowhere.  There is no warning, no notice. No one is prepared. The sky instantaneously fills with hundreds, if not thousands of alien aircraft. As far as you can see there are star-ships, war-craft of every type and dimension, from right above us to the horizon. No matter where you look, 360', there are craft flying.

All of the alien ships are always flying from the South-East towards the North-West.

There is no direct violence in view, but it can always be heard in the distance, and the glow of fire and explosions, as well as the sounds of aircraft (theirs and ours) exploding and crashing into the ground.

And finally, even after those times where it repeats within the night, I have never been able to enter or re-enter the dram lucidly. I always have to let it continue without my interfering, and it never ends well for us.

While I never wake up from these dreams like I do from some night-mares, I always wake up with the same feeling, and that is total defeat. But that's not the worst part, for me it's the first glimpse of the ships in the air, and that the keep on coming and coming and coming, there is no end, and you just feel so small and insignificant and weak, knowing that this is the end. 

With this dream, that is always what remains with me... from the moment I wake up, and usually for hours if not days after. And nothing I've ever been able to do allows me to change that outcome...


Saturday, 22 February 2014

#053 InebriaShawn

I'ma keep this short...

Happy National Margarita Day!

I've already had two of my killer double slushie lime margaritas and I'm afraid like unslurred speech, a coherent and cogent blog post is highly unlikely.


Friday, 21 February 2014

#052 My Olympic AspiraShawns III

The training continues...

Milestones continue to be reached. Today, I have set a personal best for this the 1st Sleeping Olympiad. Unaided by alcohol or drugs I have attained a Personal Best, Seasons' Best and Olympic Best. 10:36am.

I attribute this time to watching the Winter Olympics all day and 4 episodes of Supernatural at night. Seeing as this strategy is working, I will continue my training unchanged and will strive for an 11am wakeup. 

If I am not too careful I might run the risk of sleeping through Sunday morning altogether.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

#051 LotomaShawn

Dear Lotto Gods,

I would like Marcel and I to win a substantial Lottery. 

If we should be so fortunate this is my Lotto ToDo List:
-Depart the province of Quebec (never to return again until there is a non-separatist party in power)
-Purchase an old, seaside farmstead, on PEI and renovate the house (and out building(s))
-Have flower and vegetable gardens.
Pay off all of my and Marcel's parent's debts, and purchase them ranch-style homes near our home on PEI (but not that close).
Donate to many charities:
-- SPCA.
-- a Breakfast and After School program for children.
--Homeless Shelters.
-- an International Gay Legal Rights group.
--Heritage groups (Lighthouses, Cemeteries, Buildings etc)
-- Iceland 
-Take a Viking River Cruise (Don't judge, we really want to!)
-Adopt a kennel's worth of dogs.


ps, you look AMAZING! Have you lost some weight?

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

#050 IncantaShawns

I'm not sure why, but I've always loved the incantations from movies.  Since we've been watching so much Supernatural on Netflix, and what with their fairly regular exorcisms and demonic banishments in Latin, that all my favourites have been percolating in my head.

So, in no particular order here they are...

"Ah say ento pi alpha mabi upendi
(Ah say ento pi alpha mabi upendi)
In comma coriyama
(In comma coriyama)
Hey, (hey), 
high, (high).
Say bye-bye!
(Bye bye!)"
~Hocus Pocus

"Klaatu Barada Nikto."
~Army of Darkness

"Filigree, apogee, pedigree, perigee!"
"Treguna, Makoidees, Trecorum, Sadis Dee!"
~Bedknobbs and Broomsticks

"Maana turi calazay santi, Lucy, goldo, win-ja!"
~Hello Again

Aside from the fact that they're all from favourite movies of mine, I can't tell you why I can remember them so clearly, especially since they're basically all nothing but gibberish.

Maybe on the next full moon I'll recite all of them and see what happens...

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

#049 My Olympic AspiraShawns II

I am pleased to say that I have made it through the semi-finals for the Sleep-In Olympics. 

And not only have I consistently been sleeping in past 9:30 am every morning, but I have been DRUG-FREE since Saturday night. Hell, I've even stopped my mid-night pee break!

I have become a lean, mean sleeping machine!  

There's no stopping me now.  

The finals are on Sunday morning. The training and late morning practices continue!

Zzzzz Zzzzz Zzzzz

Monday, 17 February 2014

#048 Near PerfecShawn

Well Virtue and Moir came in Silver to Davis and White's Gold, but it could have gone either way. 

That said, I had a feeling that this is what would happen. Having seen their two long programs multiple times throughout the season,  aside from artistic arrangement, the only real difference has been consistency.  Davis and White are nothing if not consistently flawless, Virtue and Moir are amazing but unfailing repetition has never been one of their calling cards.

Certainly, Scheherazade is not a very well known story, the music a little more so, but I have to say it; had Virture and Moir skated to some music and or a more recognizable story I think that would have put them farther ahead over the season and at the Olympics. Both pairs are known to be at the top of their class so it's the small things like connection to the music and performance that can give an edge.

Now, I'm not looking for something so common, I mean how many skates have we seen over the past week that were performed to Les Miz or Romeo and Juliet?! It gets old. And even more so when someone skates to something that the audience claps along, often times getting louder and louder and sometimes clapping faster and faster, and UGH! that's  annoying, if not distracting to the skaters. 

Choosing something that the audience knows and will draw them into the skate without overly participating to the rhythm is as much a skill as every twist and turn on their blades.

Many skaters have selected music from Russian composers, some were a little blatant about it, if not painfully obvious: the Russian couple skating to Tchaikovsky's Swan Lake, or even Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet are just green thumbs. Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade  had just the freshness and slightly less well known feel to it that gave it an edge.

Add that edge over Virtue and Moir's skate and when you have two excellent skates you need something that is going to grab a little bit more attention.

I congratulate all the skaters, those that did as well as did not medal, but at the end of the day, Davis and White received an extra tip of the hat from me.

Sunday, 16 February 2014

#047 Rule of the NaShawns



*Marcel and I are fickle sports fans.

While without a second thought we will ALWAYS root for Canada. And almost without fail, we will never root for USA, the one exception is in Figure Skating Ice Dance. We will ALWAYS root for the Canadians, but we've been known to falter a bit when Davis and White are skating.  I say "we", but really, it's more me than we.

I can't help it. Visually, artistically, Davis and White are like a beguiling Witch and Warlock and I am helpless against their charms.   Don't get me wrong, I Love Virtue and Moir, but Davis and White just speak to me that much more. I still want Canada to win the Gold, but the ONLY acceptable exception would be Silver (behind Davis and White).

This one hiccup aside, the rules are clear and finite.

In order,  the countries we will root for:

Great Britain
New Zealand

If any of the above are out of contention, but there is an American still in the running we will root for, (in order of preference):
And Scandinavian Country
any Asian country: China, Japan, Korea (North or South)
any other Country
... even France.

It might sound childish, immature and un-Canadian but I can assure you, we get immense pleasure out of it.


Saturday, 15 February 2014

#046 Crafty ConfesShawn

Hi, my name is Shawn and I'm a Cross-Stitcher.

It's been a while since I've done any stitching of a substantial manner, but I've had a small project in mind that I finally decided to start today.  Nothing elaborate, but then there is no need for that. Sometimes the simple things are best.

I'm basically cross-stitching our first initials and then framing them. 'M' for Marcel, 'S' for Shawn, 'p' for Peanut and 's' for Santiago. All will be in a different colour, and then all framed in the same simple black frames, and then onto the wall they will go.

And once that's done I think I'll cross-stitch a unicorn farting a rainbow. 


Friday, 14 February 2014

#045 Love RevelaShawns

Love means never having to say you're sorry...

...for making mistakes.
...forgetting things.
...saying stupid things without thinking.
...for farting in bed.
...for not always saying 'I love you'.
...for forgetting to call when you're going to be late.
...for not being the perfect mate all the time.

Love means...

...being with the Man that makes you smile, feel safe, happy and needed.
...sharing your home with the two most special and adorable dogs in the world.
... it's sharing the same dreams, from the small to the grandiose.
...not being able to imagine a day without Him.

I have Love and I have it with Marcel. 

Thursday, 13 February 2014

#044 Delicious IngestShawn II

Well another home-run from Buzzfeed.

Tonight's menu was Waffeled Falafel.   Holy Healthy Eating Batman!  So simple, and sooooooooooo delicious!  

Already planning on making another super batch, (maybe 2 or 3 times the recipe) because apparently it freezes well and I can take them to work for lunch. 

What I love is when we find a recipe we like, really really like, we'll make it often. When it's a super healthy dish as well, it's even better! We're creatures of habit, and when that habit is delicious, we have no limits. 

Now it's time to get a little more creative with the garnishes. If you only knew just how regularly we plan out our meals in advance, (right now we have meals planned into next week). I think the only thing we like thinking about and planning more that the meals we're going to make, is plans for our annual summer vacations to PEI. (and that's a close second).

Some people eat to live, we live to eat, and that's a gfood thing.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

#043 Delicious IngestShawn

As a standard rule I am not a fan of Brussels Sprouts*. 

I have never voluntarily consumed them.  I have only, 5 prior occasions eaten a few, to appease my Mother-in-law, because I'm a very good Son-in-law. Generally there are 4-5 on my plate at Thanksgiving or Christmas and that's about it. That's as far as I'll go.  

That all changed tonight because I not only ate Brussels Sprouts of my own volition, but it was basically because I found a recipe on Buzzfeed that contained them, and the pics looked so good I insisted Marcel make the dish. 

Not only was it delicious, but he's going to make it again this weekend! And next time he's going to make it spicier!

I can't say that I will become a lover of B.S. but I'm willing to continue to give them the benefit of the doubt that they can be a part of a delicious meal. 

Mushrooms however remain on my Do Not Eat List, and I do not foresee any change where they're concerned...


* Is it just me?  I always thought they were called Brussel Sprouts... or at the very least, Brussel's Sprouts. Who knew?! Eat a great meal and learn something at the same time! Win - win I say.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

#042 My Olympic AspiraShawns

Just two days into my official vacation (Saturday and Sunday didn't count), if sleeping-in were an Olympic Event, I'd have thus far made it through the quarter-finals.  And my intentions are to medal.

When I was young, sleeping in was a given, but these days I fight to remain in bed past 7am. For some, that might sound like a dream come true, for me it's a nightmare.

If I had credit one thing for helping me in my competition thus far, I'd say it was our marathon viewings of the Winter Olympics.  Watching all these athletes force themselves to reach faster, higher, stronger is exhausting.  I can barely manage to watch all that they are doing! 

If I had to credit two things, the second would be the blue bippies (aka Extra Strength Tylenol PM)  I've been taking when I go to bed at night... not so much to get me to sleep, but to keep me asleep. 

Okay, so I'm not necessarily competing cleanly, but I'm willing to do what it takes, by any means to make it to the top of the podium. 

Monday, 10 February 2014

#041 Musical NotaShawn

Scheduling has finally allowed me to take my first Tin Flute Music Lesson. Marcel is off to a condo association meeting and the dogs are in a post-kibble crash...

...or so I thought.

It seems that Peanut either loves or dislikes B.  Music lover or critic... who can say?

On the plus side I can play a scale. :-)

Sunday, 9 February 2014

#040 Olympic Commentary FrustraShawn

Here's the thing; we're LOVING the Olympics, but OMG, the commentators... at least for the Canadian coverage, are abysmal... embarrassing... infuriating! 

Consistently, the commentators for Figure Skating (Olympics or otherwise) Kurt Browning and some British broad named Carol Lane are shiite. I swear their voices and every word that comes out of their mouth give me the shingles.

There is nothing they say that compliments the coverage of the Skating events. Practically never does anything they say offer useful insight into the performances. And often, as is the case, Kurt manages to swing the commentary around him. Here's a news flash Kurt, IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU ANYMORE!

And it's not just these two.  One of the commentators for the Snowboard Slopestyle, Rob Snoek appears to have never watched the sport in his life and was for the most part being tutored by Craig McMorris (a snow boarder, and brother to Bronze Medalist Mark McMorris) throughout the entirety of the coverage for both Men's and Women's events. Honestly, it's as if the day before the Olympics they just picked Snoek out of a crowd on the street and offered him the job.

Not all of the CBC Sports "Specialists" (as they like to call them) are tits on a bull, but it really makes me reminisce for the days of CTV's Olympic coverage.

It really takes away from your viewing enjoyment when you find yourself constantly yelling at the TV and the garbage pouring from the mouths of the majority of the commentators.

I swear, if someone invented a device that would allow you to watch these events, with the music, but NO commentary, regardless of cost, I would not only buy it, I'd invest in it at the grass-roots because THAT would sure to be a gold mine!

Saturday, 8 February 2014

#039 Olympic Medal AmbiShawns

Well thus far today we've watched a little over 8.5 hours of Olympic coverage. And we've seen Canada win our first Bronze, Silver and Gold Medals!

And even though we've been watching everything PVRed, we've been avoiding all other media and limiting our viewing on Facebook so as not to spoil the excitement of watching the events and our athletes winning. It's no easy task, but we're managing.

Our three medalists have to be so very proud of all they've accomplished, and too, all the other Olympians that have competed so far. Certainly they all want to win a medal, but I see they're even being there as an immense accomplishment. As they say on award shows, 'It's an honour just to be nominated', so too, it's an honour to simple qualify and make it to the Olympics.  In pure and simple terms it means that you are among the most elite of those in your sport in the World. And to represent your Country on the World stage is no small thing. 

For us to have one three medals on the first full day of competition has to be a huge inspiration and incentive to all the other athletes.

So far Canada has impressed.  

There are a few more hours of today's events left to watch and  even still, we cannot wait for tomorrow.

...but now to get up off the sofa and stretch.


Friday, 7 February 2014

#038 Winter StaycayShawn

It's official.

I am on Vacation!

After the past two weeks, it will likely take the following two weeks to properly unwind!  And that's fine.   This is a stay-cation. With little planned other than watching the Olympics, and sleeping in. We'll try and venture out every couple of days for provisions as needs warrant.

The official uniform of the next two weeks, consist of flannel pajamas, flannel pants with t-shirts, and jeans with flannel shirts. And I do not intend to shave until Sunday Feb 23rd. 

Tonight we'll watch the Opening Ceremonies that we DVRed, and then first think tomorrow, let the Armchair Judging begin!


Thursday, 6 February 2014

#037 Armchair Judge PreparaShawn

I am so excited I could scream! 

After tomorrow I am off until the 24th of February. I still had 2 weeks of vacation left to take before the end of April, and I thought what could be better than taking the two weeks of the Olympics off, so that Marcel and I could take advantage and watch them live... day and night. 

Marcel and I love watching the Olympics. Both Summer and Winter; but truth be told, it's really about the Winter Olympics. We met only a few months before the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and we spent as time as we could during those two weeks watching every event we could. We became experts on event sport, judging all we saw. 

It's a little different this year. To watch or not to watch. There's been so much talk about the Anti-gay laws on the books in Russia. Protests and boycotts, are buzzwords that are forever twinned with Sochi.  What to do? I agree that the laws are barbaric, ridiculous and downright fucked up, but these athletes have spent years, if not most of their lives training for this moment. Who really wants to deny them their moment to shine? I don't.

I think the World has judged Russia already, and I think the World will also judge Russia harshly on their Olympics.  If the news reports coming out of Sochi the past few days are any example of what we will remember (along with the Anti-gay laws) about unfinished venues, unfinished Media venues, unfinished accommodations. Tandem toilets. Yellow water. Corruption, and on and on and on... then karma is being served.  And hopefully in time these insane laws might be reversed.

My hopes over the next two weeks are that our athletes do their best. If they medal, all the better. And I hope even more so that there are no tragic events, no terrorist attacks, no violence. 

Marcel and I are ready for the Olympics. We're ready to be be amazed by the athletes performances. And we're more than ready to judge every event we watch. And we've done our voodoo to ensure Canada wins more medals than the US. ;-)


Wednesday, 5 February 2014

#036 EvaluaShawn

Today was a good day.

I had my annual evaluation with my direct Manager and his Manager. It was scheduled to go an hour, but we barely made it to 40 mins. And why? Because apparently I'm awesome! :-)
Okay, I'm not perfect, but I met or surpassed expectations in all categories but one and quite frankly it's because what was assigned was not possible, and he know it. :-)
I was told I'm too hard on myself and too much of a perfectionist. - I have to disagree...  you can never be too much of a perfectionist.
Given the recent changes in the office it's nice to hear such praise and on the record no less. I'm not so naïve as to think that I'm irreplaceable, or that I or the entire office won't be without a job in the days to come but why dwell on that? I'm freaking amazing!
And also, no word from Management if there will be raises or  bonuses, but I feel after today I'll think I'm going to be an optimist on the subject.
In the meantime I must continue to perfect my perfection.

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

#035 Musical ResoluShawn

Guess what arrived today!?


My Feadóg Irish Tin Whistle, book and CD.

I took advantage of the rush hour shut-down of the Orange Line on the Metro ride home to start reading the book.  Seems straight forward. There are only six fingers needed, I think I can cope.  But can Marcel, the dogs and the neighbours?

For certain, I'm not going to make any friends for the first few weeks though, if only for the first few songs I'll be learning...  'Twinkle Twinkle", "Merrily We Roll Along", "London Bridge" and "On Top of Old Smokey". 

I think Marcel will start taking more walks, and going to the local cafe to sip a cuppa joe and read his book.

But I *can* and *will* do this. 

I suspect the Juno, Grammy nods will soon follow. 

Monday, 3 February 2014

#034 Reverse-DelegaShawn

Another crap day at work, but something changed.

I was alone in the department today, my co-worker took a personal day, as well the Accounts Receivable girl was not in. The Auditors are still in the office, and it was month end for Finance. 

I was everyone's best friend and most needed co-worker. By 9:30am I had a list of 11 'urgent request', another 6 'can I have by noon?'  4 'by end of the day, please' and 2 leftovers from Friday afternoon.  At 10 AM anyone that came to my desk, and they kept on coming in a steady stream, were answered with the following; "No. Sorry. I won't be able to accommodate your request. Please speak to my Manager and he will assign your request if he feels it necessary." 

I got a few looks, and an "Are you kidding?"  I politely showed them the list and said, it's not going to happen. One of the Finance Department said they would be addressing this to my Boss' Manager when she returned from Vacation. I said that's a perfectly reasonable reaction for someone from a department of eight employees that expects their work to be done by one person from a department of five, who was already doing the work of three people. I'm sure she'll be very understanding to your needs.

I don't think I've ever said 'No" so much in my life. And I'll tell you what, it felt AMAZING!

Up until Friday of last week, I'd just keep letting people dump their crap work on my desk and would just barrel through, often taking a very late lunch or none at all.  Well no more. 

I am certainly a team player, but there are limits. I want my direct Manager to see just exactly what is being asked of me from other departments, on top of my expected duties.  We're in the midst of our annual review and set up of our personal objectives for the following year. I realized after completing my part of the review, just how much of other people's work I am doing.  If he want's me to do it, I'll do it, but something from my existing deliverable will have to be removed. 

In the mean time, if you need something from me, go see my Boss first. 

Sunday, 2 February 2014

#033 Abbey CaptivaShawn

Between yesterday and today, we watched all nine episodes of Downton Abbey, season four.

Why oh, why oh, why can't British Television create a longer season?!  Don't get me wrong, I know it's usually 6 episodes, and that a 9 episode season is immeasurably better... but even still...

And when I said yesterday how I adored the scheming, I really had no idea just how fabulously deep and wicked they would go... and all to save the Monarchy! One has just no idea how well the Crawley family can work as such a clandestine force.

The upside of doing a marathon viewing is you remain completely in the moment of the show, the down side is that once it's over, it's co completely over. So now we must wait eleven more months before the next series.

Oh the tragedy!
Oh the drama!
Oh the dry British wit!

Saturday, 1 February 2014

#032 Aristocratic AddictShawn

Four episodes of Downton Abbey down... 5 to go.

I used to think "Another World" was My Story, and maybe it was, back in the eighties... but it's that was then, and Downton Abbey is now.

Honestly there is just so much I love about this show...

The drama. The scheming. The sex(ual innuendo and tension at least). The scheming. The dysfunctional family politics. The scheming. The money. The scheming.


Cannot wait for tomorrow!