athenaltena: (Bored)
So girl who won't stop using her cell phone at work has been replaced by guy who won't stop using his cell phone at work. I leaned over and whispered that he really does need to put that thing away since people get fired for that, and one person just got fired for that (among other things, but I was trying to make a point so forgive the slight hyperbole).

Five minutes later guess what he's doing. Again. At one point I was tempted to say something like "put that thing away or I swear to God I'll break it" but I decided to just drop it. Guess he doesn't value this job after all. *shrug* I tried, but you cannot save people from their own stupidity.

Also anecdotal evidence suggests that I have a calming effect on people, since I seem to get a lot less angry people, judging by me overhearing other people talking to them and how negative those interactions sound. I don't know if it's just luck, but that doesn't tend to happen. I noticed this at my last job too, maybe my tone of voice or something else just has a disarming effect, but whatever it is people seem to react less negatively to me. Maybe it's because I make an effort to sound pleasant and friendly, and I know people react to tone of voice and if the person you're talking to sounds bored and disinterested and you're already in a bad mood it doesn't help.
athenaltena: (Bored)
No one has cashed my missing check, so it most likely got lost in the mail.  I prefer that more benign (but still irritating) explanation to the idea that the same asshole who vandalized one of the mailboxes downstairs took it. The staffing people said to wait one more day since they have sometimes had checks mailed Thursday show up Tuesday, and to call them tomorrow if there's still no sign of it tomorrow.

I also got a direct deposit form that I'll fax over while at work so this doesn't happen again. I don't need to have this sort of stress if I can avoid it.

*KABOOM*

May. 14th, 2012 08:00 pm
athenaltena: (RAGE)
In case you didn't guess from the subject line, still no check. Tomorrow morning yours truly is going Godzilla on the staffing agency.

Though it did occur to me that this might not actually be their fault, since sometime this weekend someone sabotaged the mailbox of another person who lives here (meaning it's a broken hunk of metal on the ground now) and I wonder if that same person might've stolen my check if it did arrive on Friday. If so they only took the check and not some junkmail that arrived. Either way, I need a replacement, NOW, and I found out that they do have direct deposit through some other people who work through the same agency so I'll set that up so this doesn't happen again.
athenaltena: (Bored)

Today was interesting because in the same day I had a (very nice) nun call in and have me pass a message to her doctor, and then had to call two priests for one gentleman who was having a spiritual crisis prior to surgery (the first priest didn't get back to us so we contacted the backup priest, who did). We were joking about that later about how "Two priests and a nun" sounds like the setup of a joke.

This Saturday definitely went smoother than last week, and I'm pleasantly surprised at how fast I'm picking it up. I still sat next to a supervisor in case I had questions, and indeed I had many questions, but some of the answers are so esoteric that they didn't expect me to know them. They also keep telling me to not be so hard on myself when I do mess up, but I think of it as holding myself to the same standards I hold other people to, otherwise I'd be a hypocrite. Oh well. Philosophical difference I guess.

athenaltena: (adjust glases)
I wound up playing the stool pigeon at work the other day when on Tuesday night after all the supervisors had left one of the girls sitting next to me starting sneakily checking her cell phone under the desk. That is a big no-no, since not only is is unprofessional, but we have to comply with HIPAA and having one of those out is one of the fastest ways to run afoul of that law and get us in big trouble. It's the same reason all of our calls are recording and we're not allowed to take down information like SS numbers and medication names, though people are all too happy to tell them to us sometimes. So the next morning I pulled my supervisor aside and told her out of earshot of this girl about what I'd seen, and she said she'd "have words" with the girl. Quite frankly I didn't like this girl anyway since I met her, and I was kind of glad to see my first impression proved to be correct yet again. 

Other than that, it seems Thursday is now my Friday since I have Friday off for at least two weeks. Or maybe Saturday is actually my Friday. I'll have to think on that.
athenaltena: (adjust glases)
Apparently Saturday is when the weirdoes come out in regards to who calls my call center. While there are some legitimate emergencies (like one woman who kept insisting that I didn't need to page anyone even though she was in labor) there are also some confused people. Like one guy who ranted for five minutes about how the company we answer phones for had delivered a pool table to him and didn't assemble it... even though they're a delivery company, not an assembly place. Or something. My trainer took over that one about halfway through and I admit to zoning out in confusion.

Also ironically it looks like I'll actually be waking up earlier on Saturdays than during the rest of the week, given the schedule. It turns out the way they schedule you is that they look at the window of time you said you'd be available and then put you in where they need it. Mine's more or less consistent, and next week is mostly 12 to 8's. And I get Friday off, because it just worked out that way. So I do in fact have something like a weekend, it's just Friday and Sunday. Eh. I'll make it work.

And tomorrow I'm seeing The Avengers with some friends after church. Today I need to do laundry and get some other things for the week.
athenaltena: (Haruhi)
I should fine out my work schedule tomorrow, which'll help me get a sense of the new few months scheduling wise. I also scared the hell out of myself yesterday since I thought I'd circled the wrong shift for my availability when I first gave it to them, but I wasn't that dumb. I was glad, since I had a horrible moment where I thought I'd signed up for the night shift. Thankfully, I did not. I'll likely be starting in the mornings and likely getting out mid/late afternoon, which I can do. I also found out that I do have to do one weekend shift, since everyone has to, but those are shorter shifts and hey, more money. As long as I have Sunday off it's fine with me, and I basically told myself to stop whining about it since I used to do a weekend shift at my job in school. If teenage me could handle it 20-something me can handle it too. Plus the weekend shifts are always pretty slow according to the folks there.

I also feel bad for the other young woman I was training with, since she had the bad luck to get called for jury duty and has been out all week as a result. Apparently this happens to people at this call center a lot, since they've had two different people get called for grand jury duty. She has a lot of catching up to do when she gets back.

I was also training with a guy who had a really, really thick Revere accent, which lead to a humorous moment where he answered the phone and the caller did not understand him at all because he sounded like he said "Senta" rather than "Center." He was a really nice guy, but sitting next to him was interesting since he's also, well, loud. As in, sitting-next-to-him-makes-it-hard-to-hear-my-caller loud. I think the fact that we were in a small room rather than out on the main floor, which is a big open space, made it worse. It probably won't be so bad when he's out there and not directly next to someone.

I also had a humorous moment where a woman called me and asked... for the phone number of "the shoe store" next to one of the hospital buildings. I'm rather impressed that I managed to not say out loud what I was thinking, which was "What?" We figured out later that she probably mean the specialized orthopedic clinic, which isn't exactly a shoe store but does sell them, but even the person who was training me had never heard that one before.
athenaltena: (Rider)
I continue to be impressed at how much I'm both enjoying this new job and at how good I am at it. I was not expecting either of those things, but whaddhya know, that's how it's worked out. They gave me a brief evaluation of the last few days and told me some things I need to work on (most of which I already knew about) but they said overall I'm doing very well.

They've been having me be plugged in with various other people so they can listen to what I'm doing and help me out if I need it. Eventually I'll be on my own, but I do like feeling like I'm not completely on my own, and as I've said my last job basically threw me in feet first and told me to figure it out on my own. The guy today was very nice and we eventually got talking about nerdy stuff between calls. Near the end of the day we also had a few instances where he told me to do something and I then said what he just told me out loud to the caller, which I called an "I, [state your name]" error. Oh well. I can tell that I definitely like being in a faster-paced environment than my old job, it goes a lot quicker and I feel more challenged mentally.

It also means that, ironically, these days I'm probably using my higher pitched professional voice than my regular, talking to someone normally voice. I was explaining to the guy I was working with today that there is a difference, since even if it's not obvious to someone listening speaking with that voice just feels different. I know I sit up straighter, for one, and it's yet another area where the radio work unexpectedly comes in handy. I was even told in my evaluation that my projection and enunciation are very good, and that's why.

I'm also trying to get back into going to the gym, so I'm breaking myself back into that. I can definitely tell that I was a bit out of practice, but that'll go away once I get used to it again.
athenaltena: (feed birds)
Day four of the new job and I think it's something I can do. I actually found myself enjoying it more than I was expecting. There's definitely a much faster pace than at my old job, and one of the things I liked least about my old job was having too much downtime and not enough direction. That's not a problem here.

I also finally realized why this other young woman training with me annoyed me for some reason when she really hadn't don anything to warrant it, since it turns out that she sounds exactly like someone I used to live with who I did not like at all, so the sound of her voice triggers that memory. Luckily I've managed to stay professional, and I it's not her fault that she sounds like someone I've had bad experiences with.
athenaltena: (relaxed)
The irony that I had to call DUA to clear up why my last week of UI benefits hadn't processed yet when it's actually the last week I'll have to claim benefits for (hopefully) quite some time is not lost on me. They basically just had to know the circumstances of the last temp job I had and were holding the money until then. Hopefully it'll process tonight, which is good because until around next Friday I'm basically broke.

I think I'm getting the hang of the basic calls, and the guy I was training with eventually managed to wean me off using "okay" since that's not an approved word or something like that. 
athenaltena: (Clow/Yuuko)
That was easier than I expected. It's nice to be pleasantly surprised with myself. Most of this job is answering calls and directing them to their appropriate extensions, and since there are about half a dozen different organizations that use this place I switch hats between answering for a hospital and a college, including one that's all the way in New York, pretty frequently. And while it's definitely busy it's not the complete chaos I was afraid of. You do get some downtime outside your breaks.

Oh, and their coffee machine was broken. Hopefully it'll be fixed by tomorrow. If not at least they have a Bruegger's downstairs.

And one unexpected benefit of having done radio work is that I'm already used to self-editing out the "ums" and the like when I'm talking, unlike the other girl they had training with me. She also had a tendency to say "sorry" a lot, which is a habit I don't think I've ever had but that I've noticed among a lot of young women. My first instinct is to say "stop apologizing!" but I kept my mouth shut. One of my female friends does that too and it drives me nuts.

Not to say I didn't screw up, since I did, but that at least came a bit easier. Hopefully tomorrow will come easier, since even after about 20 minutes of taking calls I felt more confident at it.
athenaltena: (Anthy ponderous)
Glad I installed that pedometer app on my phone, since it can help shed light on why I'm both so damn exhausted and why I've lost about 10 pounds since moving to Boston. For instance, I walked close to 3 miles today. Damn. I know I'm a bad judge of relative distance, but that surprised me. Also explains why when I got home I lay down for a minute and then proceeded to fall asleep for a few hours.

I think that interview went pretty well today. I very much overestimated how much time it would take on purpose since I'd never been to that area, so I just kind of fucked around and got some coffee before I went in. It's a call center that has several of the medical places in the area as its customers, and despite my apprehension about phones I know it's much easier for me to switch to "on" mode when I'm getting a call rather than making it. They also explained that while they're not a 911 line they do get cases that are pretty serious, so being able to work under pressure is a must. At one of my last interviews I actually said that I think I work better under a bit of pressure than not, since I know my own mind and that I can get distracted if there's not something keeping me focused. I was also cracked up by the informational movie they showed which was very, very 90s. The computers in particular were hilariously out of date, and when I asked about that they explained that the new computers actually make things slower in some ways since when it was just a DOS system you didn't have to deal with different windows or tabs and all that. I also asked if doctors still use pagers like in the video since it's been years since I've seen someone with a pager, and they explained that almost all of them do since other types of frequencies aren't as reliable, and hospitals use a special frequency. Learn something new every day! Hopefully we'll know by the end of the week if they're interested in me, and if they are I'll start a 2-3 week training course. This is temp-to-hire, so at the very least it'll hold me over if it works out.

Also one of the smoke detectors on another floor has been doing the "I have a low battery so I'm going to chirp every 30 seconds" thing all afternoon, and the people in that apartment are either not home or too dumb to know how to change it (hint: it involves a ladder or a chair and a fresh battery). Since this is the same apartment building where someone set off the building wide fire alarm last week and then booked it, both are distinct possibilities. And yes, I'm the type of person who will be kept awake by sounds like that. At my parents' house I sometimes get woken out of a dead sleep by things like the furnace turning on. It might be lessened if I close my window, since for now it's opened a crack, but I hope they fix that.

*phew*

Feb. 2nd, 2012 02:13 pm
athenaltena: (Yuzuriha)
Just as I was starting to think I was out of the running for the thing in Malden I got an email from the woman I interviewed with saying that she'd been out sick for the past few days but was setting up the second round of interviews. So I'm still in the running!
athenaltena: (Yuzuriha)
Whoot! The one catch is that I have to go up to Malden, but it's a pretty quick hop up there. And the thing is that I actually have thought about moving up there since the costs of living are less than the city, plus I'm pretty sure an ancestor of mine lived there unless I'm completely misremembering the story (which is entirely possible).

This is very welcome news, since minus recruiting firms this is the first callback I've gotten. A little validation is always nice.
athenaltena: (cat)
My brain is running on fumes right now. And yet I somehow managed to get the quarterly report we have to do at work done. Even I'm surprised I pulled it off, but hey, if I have to go I'll go out with a bang.

This morning I met with someone at a staffing agency, and she's going to submit my application for a position at a small insurance company. Turns out it's a temp-to-hire position, and she explained that they're specifically looking for a recent college grad. She also explained that a lot of companies that weren't hiring for a long time are now doing temp-to-hire as a "test drive" of sorts, and it also allows them to get someone in quickly since it sometimes takes a while for the HR paperwork to get done and using a temp-to-hire means they can do it while the person is working for them. 

I think my discussion with her went pretty well, and I've got two more meetings like that next week. Once that my meeting was over I had some time to kill before I had to be at work, so I went into Macy's and was snatched up by some of the ladies there for a makeup consultation. I'd actually been meaning to do that, but I was still a bit surprised because they effectively pounced me. They actually convinced me to get some stuff, mainly some concealer (to hide that I look as tired as I feel right now) some eyeliner and some eyeshadow. They also convinced me to get eyeshadow that's green-tinted despite my initial reservations, since I'm more "subtle" than "Wicked Witch of the West", but it didn't look bad and actually does bring out my eyes. They actually said that hazel eyes are neat in that you can wear practically any shade of eyeshadow and it still looks okay, though it was a bit weird when they lady got right up in my face to see what color they were.

I also discovered that Macy's makes the types of bras I like, so that's filed away for future reference. I really, really hate underwire bras, so I was glad to see they have the type that don't have them. Underwires feel like having a steel cage around my ribs, and they tend to have additional padding too, which doesn't appeal to me since that is not an area I care about emphasizing. I usually prefer sports bras, but I can't always wear those with certain things, so I was glad to see Macy's has the type I actually like.
athenaltena: (over shoulder)
Despite all this stress about losing my job, they honestly are trying to help me as much as they can. I told my boss a while ago what the official date I stopped being a student was (the 23rd) and figured I'd stop around the 20th, but today she told me that I might as well continue on until the end of the month to "finish up" what I've been working on, and the way she said it had a definite wink implied. By my calculations that'll get me around $200 more than I would have otherwise, not to mention more time I find something, even if it's only a week.

Either way, I'll take what I can get, and I do appreciate it.
athenaltena: (Default)
I'm glad that I both have a good spam blocker and that I'm not particularly gullible, since I've gotten two phishing emails for my bank account info in the past two days. I sent them both over to the abuse teams at the bank as soon as I realized what they were.

I've also been having weird-ass dreams, and an incident yesterday morning when I thought I was getting out of bed but was actually still asleep, but because my head was still down I felt like I was falling over or someone had rotated the room. Or something. Either way it was very strange. And then last night I had a dream where my dad and I were in Afghanistan for some reason, even though the people there and what they were wearing made it look more like someplace in the South, and then something about a carnival and a singing contest. And something about Osama Bin Laden's grave being in the area, ignoring the fact that he both doesn't have a grave (that I know of) and didn't die in Afghanistan. At least some of that I can blame on the fact that I was reading about the Middle East last night and have been playing Left 4 Dead 2, which is set in the South. Still strange.

I also both do and don't want to go back to Boston this weekend, since going back means having to deal with the fact that I'll be out of work in about three weeks. I've also been checking my phone like a madwoman to see if any place I've applied has called me back, and continually reminding myself that the people in charge of calling people back are probably on vacation and that no one will be doing anything until I'm back in the city anyway.

I think I've also mentioned that Mari has been getting along surprisingly well with Stella and Jesse, more so that I expected. I almost feel bad yanking her back into the city with me, but she'll get used to it again.
athenaltena: (sleep)
And I more or less did nothing to celebrate it today, but am trying to put something together for the weekend. It barely even registered that my birthday was this week until about Sunday.

The unfortunate part about being an adult is I had a lot of other stuff to do, including study for a Japanese test, work, and go to class. It was okay though, I talked to some of my friends for a bit after class, my parents called to wish me a happy birthday, I made macaroni and cheese, my all time favorite food, and am now making cookies. Not bad.

I also got myself some comics, bought myself a book and took advantage of a sale to get a t-shirt I wanted. I realize that one reason it's hard to shop for people as they get older is that if they want something they can get it for themselves. I did get Supergods from mom and dad got me an N7 hoodie that should show up any day, as well as a check from my great aunt. My grandma's also sending something.

So yeah. *shrug* No big deal, it was okay.

Wow.

Aug. 18th, 2011 06:38 pm
athenaltena: (ಠ_ಠ)
Wow. In my job I sometimes run across stories that make me shake my head, but this one was special.

I called the town to ask what had happened to a project since the developer has gone AWOL on us, and the town clerk explained to me that they didn't wind up going forward with it. Fairly standard story.

Then she says "Yeah, it was pretty much dead in the water as soon as the whole business with that ethics violation came up."

At that point I stopped her and asked, naturally, what ethics violation, since we hadn't heard anything about this. She then explained that the son of this developer used to be the director of the town's Housing Authority, and at the same time they were trying to get this project off the ground it came out that the son had been fined $5000 since he circumvented housing waitlists for his friends, who evicted themselves from their home, which was owned by a real estate trust they controlled, so they got to the top of the list due to an "emergency." He then had his dad buy the property and resell it at a profit to the tune of a hundred thousand dollars, which he pocketed. There was also the matter of some forgery of documents that gave veteran's housing to someone who was not actually a veteran, but a friend of the family.

At that point it became obvious why this project never went forward. Mainly that in the town's opinion they couldn't trust this guy or his dad as far as they could throw him, so this guy made the wise decision to bail on this new project.

That's not quite the craziest story we've had, but that's up there on the WTF meter. Is it any wonder our program gets a bad rep when our developers try to pull shit like this, and worse, are dumb enough to get caught?
athenaltena: (serene)
I managed to make my boss laugh this week when I remarked that with all these stock market shenanigans that some of our developers spook easier than horses. She's a horse person herself so she appreciated the reference.

Besides database gnomes this week was interesting because of all this stuff, and I actually had one guy leave me a message to the effect of "Remember how a few months ago we said we'd be going forward? Yeeaaahh... We'll get back to you on that." Repeat that conversation about 12 times and that was essentially my week. Oy.

Luckily it seems to be stabilizing, but it was real interesting being in the thick of that since we're pretty close to State Street, the big financial center. During the worst of it I was down there at one point and brokers were just standing on the sidewalk looking forlorn. Not to mention that I get out of work at 5 and the markets close at 4 so I'd always know if it had gone badly because people in my  building would be talking about it, and at my gym there are TVs showing the news so I'd catch news of it there.

The irony is that my personal finances are in better shape than they've been for a while, though on a significantly smaller scale than all of this. There's still not much and I could pretty easily fuck it up or have it get fucked up by outside forces, but I have at least a little squirreled away at the moment. I also realize that one sign I've become and adult is that my nightmares have less to do with getting chased by monsters so much as realizing that I owe someone $6000 with no way to pay them back. And yes that was a real nightmare I had not too long ago.

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