Monday, June 10, 2013

The Curse of the Blessing

I have officially made the summer switch from working THERE to working HERE.  I have the privilege of not only a part-time job, but time off from my full-time job during the summer.  Technology makes it possible for me to accomplish my tasks from home via internet and an aging workhorse of a laptop.  I make my own hours, take breaks when I need them, and have pretty direct control over how much I earn based on hours I work.  Am I complaining? NO!  Well, maybe, some perhaps .  . .okay, yes.

I report to the cyber-saltmine every morning at . . . .wait.  I don't have to get up right now, so I will squeeze a few more minutes into snooze time.  After all, I don't have to plan for the morning commute.  (Yes, but that's 10 minutes when you WON'T be earning any money.  Move yer bloomin' arse.)  All right, then.  I'm up.  What should I wear?  (This is your dream, job, remember?  Wear what you want.  Yes, the PROPERTY OF U.S. NAVY T-shirt works.)  Coffee is already brewed and waiting.  Mr. Powers is still pulling 8-3 at the school house.  I will just have a quick cup with breakfast, and then after my second cup, which I now have time for, I will get on the computer and hit some licks.  (You can have your second cup while you work, Idiot.  Put the computer on the kitchen table.)

So here I am in my office, which today is the kitchen.  I have everything I need--my working materials, a pen, fresh coffee, my phone.  And the dog, I need the dog.  Jolene?  Come here, girl.  With the dog stretched out beneath the table, I am finally all set.  Almost.  Where should I set my coffee cup?  If I put it to the left of the computer, it will be on top of the printed materials I need to access as I work.  If I put it on the right, I will knock it on the floor.  I drink coffee left-handed.  (Hello!  This is a kitchen table.  Put the computer on the side, not on the end.  You will have plenty of room to spread your stuff out.)

Organized at last!  I log onto my worksite and check yesterday's productivity report.  Not bad, but not good either.  Yesterday was Sunday, and I was sleepy most of the afternoon.  On the weekends, they make you log off at 5:00 p.m.  Today is Monday, though, and I can put in as many hours as possible.  I will get started right away, but Jolene needs to go out.  The other two dogs want in.  They are confused by my presence at home on what is clearly a weekday.  Dogs re-distributed, I begin my preliminary activity.  I have my phone close by, because the company I work for offers great technical assistance, and I sometimes need access to it.  My phone also alerts me to email as it comes in, Facebook messages, and sales at Target, all of which I will ignore.  (You better not ignore that Facebook alert.  You have a deployed child, remember?)  Some of which I will ignore.

It has been an hour, and I have found a comfortable groove of action.  I am not working with blistering speed, mind you, but I have a steady pace going, and I am far from needing a break.  I type in a response and get an error message.  I haven't seen this one before, but internet can be persnickety, so I log out.  I log right back in.  My account is locked.  It must be an issue with the password, as I have recently had my project switched by the company I work for, so I probably should have changed my password at that time.  No problem; that is why my phone is close by.  I call the toll-free number and select tech support.  A very nice lady politely informs me that this is not a technical issue.  I need to speak to some one in content support.  Uh-oh.  I have a content problem?  They usually warn me a million times if accuracy is in question. 

It is 10:30 in the morning.  I cannot log back in for another 15 minutes while my director researches the problem.  He thinks one of my co-workers may have developed some issues which are causing my numbers to appear skewed, as we are randomly paired to ensure accuracy.  (Who is this slacker?  I don't have time to wait while y'all check my progress!)  Of course I will wait, and thank you, Mr. Director for your feedback.  It isn't lunchtime.  All the dogs have come in because it has begun to rain.  I do not need to go for a walk or have more coffee.  I need to work.

This is the reality of "use-your-own-computer-make-your-own-hours-work-from-home."  It is a blogger's dream.