Thursday, April 14, 2011

My 9 to 5 weep.

Yesterday was my first on-the-job cry. It was bound to happen one of these days. Also noteworthy, my office wall is glass. This means I can run, but I can't hide. I quickly realized it's possible to care deeply about something without knowing it. And then when something threatens to ruin the whole kit and kaboodle -- my work baby -- I'm suddenly aware that I would work as long as it took to make it right.

Who knew I cared about data? It's not the data, really. It's the people the data represents. You see, their names will become faces and bodies in just a couple weeks, and my job is to 1.) know that they're coming to our event, and 2.) prepare in advance everything they will need for the week. So when our trial-phase online database decided to move over to real-phase and omit some very important information, I got queasy. Real queasy.

I don't think about this often enough, but what I do here (and everywhere, really) has a consequence. It reflects onto something. In this case, it reflects on my company. There are no actions without reactions. Months ago, I was debating whether or not to enter all the information in two different places, just for safe-keeping. I decided not to, and now I'm wishing I had. We humans have very little foresight. I don't know what will happen after I click "Publish Post" or what will happen at 5:30 this evening, or on my 26th birthday. But whatever I do will have a consequence. That little nauseous feeling in my stomach reminds me that my actions affect others, just like our software company's actions affected me.

Today I'm considering what and who I represent and what my life means because of it. And for now, I need to avert crisis and recover what's been lost. Adios.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The Cousins

The cousins flew out from Los Angeles last weekend for a Colorado Getaway. This whole side of my family is a magnet for unusual circumstances. What would be highly unusual for most people is normal for them. KD fell through the library ceiling at school, Marcy and I crashed our bikes every ride because we were talking, and Susannah totaled the family friends' golf cart. Spending time with them is one big, delightful mess.

It was no surprise when the first story I heard after picking them up from the airport was that Aunt T's butcher knife had been confiscated at Security. Because she put it in her carry-on to bring as a gift to her sister.

On our way home after 11:00 p.m., the natural thing to do was stop by the Air Force Academy to visit cousin Ty who has to be back in his dorm by midnight. We pulled up to the guard house, rolled the windows down and stared (smiling) at the guard, who stared (not smiling) back at us. After a pause, Aunt T said, "We're here to see a cadet." Guard said, I need to see your military ID. I said, "How about a Colorado driver license?" He said, "I need to see your military ID." I don't have one of those. "Okay, I need you to pull over and get out of your vehicle after I check your trunk. The driver (that was me) will need to come inside." Great. After signing some papers, we took Ty out for ice cream and back to his dorm in 20 minutes flat.

Saturday morning, we were back at the Air Force Academy for a parade.

Need I say more? 

On their way to my house Sunday night, they were interrogated at King Soopers after they took the next day's pastries, just delivered by Starbucks. They were on their way to the register when they were stopped by an employee, "Ma'am? Ma'am!! May I ask why you're taking tomorrow's pastries??" They bought coffee instead.

This was my life in college, when their house was where I spent most of my time. Always weird, always fantastic, always an adventure. I wish you could know them.