Betsy Whitt

I read. I write. I think. I live.

Category: The Day Job (page 2 of 3)

First of May – Snow Day?

I’m not sure if you’ll be able to see this, because I can’t really leave my desk and I have no desire to go out and take a picture outside, but we have big fat snowflakes coming down outside, and it doesn’t look like they’re going to stop anytime soon.

Yesterday? It was 85, clear, and sunny. Perfect.

Today? Accumulating snow.



I’ve made a decision about The Day Job.

It’s a big decision, because it’s confirming my intentions and solidifying how I use my time. Matt’s going to keep me accountable.

It will be hard, but good.


The Lunch Wait

You know what the worst thing is?

It’s when only one other person in the building knows how to run the phone system, making them the only person who can give you a lunch break.

And then it’s when that one person goes off to run errands and now appears not to be coming back in time to give you a lunch break at anything close to a decent time.

Especially when you’re hungry and sleepy and bored.

Okay, so maybe it doesn’t compare on a large scale with some other problems that could arise. But it still stinks.


We went skiing yesterday. Beautiful day, yet again, but more crowded than usual since we forgot that it’s getting into Spring Break season, which means midweek skiing is busy. I fell three times, all for really dumb reasons, but I’m not feeling too bad today. Mostly my calves hurt, but I think that’s because we forgot to make our banana milkshakes last night. We were both pretty much dead tired.

In other news, I keep falling more and more behind on those reading journals (I have 16 to do now – they’re going to be short when I get to them), and I was going to work on them today but the finance department has tons of receipts that need stuffing, so I’ve got to give that priority.

Also as regards the day job, up until now we’ve kept track of how many phone calls we get and what they’re for (i.e. if they’re calling to give us an address change or they didn’t get a receipt or whatever… there were about 15 categories) and now we’re no longer doing that. I feel oddly bereft. I mean, it’s not as if I do all that much anyway, and now I don’t even have to keep track of phone calls? This job just gets cushier and cushier. Before long, I’ll be playing receptionist from home. Hah!


Of Bike Rides and Books

Yesterday: Finished reading another book; almost finished laundry (see? I knew it wouldn’t be done Monday); printed out copies of critique group’s March pages; 7 mile bike ride (woohoo spring!); cleared out more than one other little thing that’s been hanging about waiting to get done; refilled the propane tank; watched The Simpsons Movie (ha! funny! should have watched it sooner!).

Today: Didn’t want to wake up; wore flip-flops to work (hey, the warmth will only last another day or two before it cools off again, and I’m taking advantage); no receipts waiting to be stuffed (woohoo!); adding new donor addresses to the database; otherwise, I get to read those pages I printed yesterday, catch up on reading journals (12 behind, and counting), and work on the novel. Or at least set myself up to be able to concentrate on it this evening.

Also, the scarf I’m wearing as a belt today makes me feel a bit like a pirate. Arrr! Pirate Betsy!


Wednesday Wednesday

I’m at work.  Do I post blog entries while I’m at work more often than not? Hmmm… I think I might. There haven’t been updates lately because although I’ve been getting things done, none of them have been terribly interesting. I mean, I folded four loads of laundry, but that’s not really worth blogging about unless the lint trap in the dryer caught fire. (That did actually happen once. My roommate didn’t know you had to clean out the lint trap, and as a result she almost burned down the house. Gotta love that.)

We also signed all the paperwork to renew our lease despite the crazy price hike, the dog got her rabies shot, and I went to the doctor. See? All good things checked off the list, but not really blog-worthy.

Ok, almost not blog-worthy. I went to the doctor because I’ve been having trouble sleeping… I wake up five or six times a night, on average, and have wacky dreams. No, really. Wacky ones. I don’t remember a lot of them, but in one, a town had built a dam and pumped all the water away from their shore (which wasn’t really a shore, but more of a vast shopping mall right on the lake) and they were all pitching in to make it deeper by hand. I’m fairly certain it was Lake Michigan. Yes, they dammed out Lake Michigan so they could make a tiny piece of it deeper. I was looking for a friend, but instead I sat down in the middle of a middle-school concert band, which was directed by my 5th grade band director. I didn’t have an instrument, so I just sat there in the trumpet section while they practiced outside with the mall behind them and people digging with shovels and backhoes all around them. I played a lot of instruments in my band days, but trumpet was never one of them.

Yeah, I’ve got no idea where that came from.

At any rate, I haven’t been sleeping well, so we’re trying out new medication and I have instructions not to drink caffeine after noon. The biggest trouble that presents is that I usually drink tea while I write in the afternoon and evening, which means I need to find decaf loose-leaf tea, of which there seem to be surprisingly few varieties. Or, at least, few affordable varieties that don’t require also shelling out for shipping. But as far as the new meds go, I think I slept straight through last night and I don’t recall any dreams, so I’m thinking that’s a good thing.

But I should stop fiddling around online and get other things done. Things like catching up (again) with my reading journal. Oh, yeah, and writing. Maybe a bit of that, too….


Love and Lists

Yeah, love and lists. Let’s get the icky love stuff out of the way first. ;)

I have mixed feelings about Valentine’s Day.

On the one hand, it’s a commercial scam to get people to buy chocolates and out-of-season flowers and jewelry and go out to dinner. It usually ends up making people who have someone to call their valentine all panicky and guilty because they have to find a good present (but then you know how I feel about obligatory gift giving) and it makes a lot of the people without valentines for whatever reason feel lonely and dissatisfied and otherwise depressed. For all those reasons, I wish somebody would do away with Valentine’s Day. It’s not worth the trouble.

On the other hand, I have a special place in my heart for February 14th, because that’s when Matt and I went on our first Official Date. There were a few Not-Dates before that, because neither of us was allegedly interested in dating at the time, but by this date five years ago we’d given up and finally admitted we were interested, and we went out for dinner and a movie. We were surprised at the number of couples who were out to eat, and suddenly we realized it was Valentine’s Day and neither of us had even realized it.

Let me just say I was appalled. I mean, really. What kind of sappy romantic cheeseballs go on their first date on Valentine’s Day? Apparently, we do. I won’t bore you with the details of all the reasons I was appalled, but some of them were good and some were sort of lame. But really, honestly, we didn’t do it on purpose. If it makes any difference, the movie we saw was really terrible. Bad Valentine’s Day date. That makes up for some of the romantic sappiness, right?

In any event, I remember this anniversary more easily than our wedding anniversary most of the time, but maybe that’s because they make candy just for the occasion and plaster the entire world with pink and red for a month beforehand. Hey, if somebody would start hanging up big “Happy Anniversary, Matt and Betsy” posters everywhere starting in early May, I’d probably remember it before I see the calendar that morning.

So that’s my Valentine’s Day dichotomy. Stupid holiday; happy anniversary. End icky love discussion. ;)

Now, on to the lists. There’s a lot that needs to get done, but I’ve been putting it off for one reason or another. My work schedule has changed, so that now I’ll have more time for writing and a more stable work schedule, which should help me find a groove. I work well with grooves, and I need to be working well.

In an effort to kick-start that, I’ve made myself a list. Normally, my lists are of all the things that need to get done rightnowtoday. This list is of all the things I’ve been meaning to do for however long (more than a month, most of them) but I haven’t quite gotten to them. Some of them don’t have deadlines. Some of them have deadlines that have passed. Some are just annoying, and I don’t want to do them.

There are 11 things on my list today, and I have 3 of them checked off already. I intend to check off at least six more before the end of the day, and have the remaining two tasks at least halfway finished, so that I can mark them off by tomorrow night. Then I won’t have things to worry about instead of actually getting other important things done.

I’ll be able to focus on writing and all the other important things instead of wallow in my chronic inability to finish everyday tasks.

For a little while, at least. :)


Genius Moment

I’ve lost the admin password for the blog – again. One would think, since I just reset it two weeks ago, that I would know what it is, but apparently I don’t. I can’t explain it. I’ll have to get in through the backside again, but I won’t have time for that for a few days, so if I’m a little slow on responses and comment moderation that’s my excuse. That also means I can’t check traffic flow to the site, which eliminates one of my obsessive procrastinatory activities during the day. You’d think that might free up some time, but so far no beans on that count.

I’ve got a kajillion receipts to stuff today, and I keep thinking of things I should have gotten done before I went to work today to get things ready for Mom’s visit. I was going to get up at 6, but I was tired and the bed was so snuggley and warm, and all of a sudden it was 7 and I had to hurry to get to work on time. But I left Matt a list of things to take care of while I’m gone.

I think I’ll turn on the heater to keep my feet warm.

Distracted, who? Me?

I’m having chili for lunch.


Look! A Sports Entry!

I just realized the Super Bowl is this weekend. Yes, I know that’s pretty pitiful. I mean, I know it’s around this time of year, but I never can remember exactly when.

Last year we went over to a party with some friends–I took my book and read in the corner most of the time, which is funny because I do like to watch football. It’s just one of the few sports that I’d rather be in the stands to see… must be a throwback to the five years of Friday night lights in marching band from my distant (haha) youth. Anyway, I don’t even remember which teams played last year’s Super Bowl. Not even a good guess.

This year, it’s the Patriots (woo! Go Pats!) and the Giants. Seriously? The Giants?? In the Super Bowl? Even if the Pats hadn’t had an undefeated season, and even if they weren’t my personal favorite pro football team, I don’t think I could root for the Giants. I mean, they’re nice and all, but they’re sort of like the Mets. I’m going to tick off all my NYC readers today, aren’t I? Oh wait… I don’t think I have any… But really. People root for the Mets and the Giants and (let’s face it) my former hometown Bengals out of dogged loyalty, not out of any real expectation they’ll have a great season. Don’t get me wrong – if a good season comes along everybody’s thrilled, but it’s more like winning at poker night as opposed to getting a salary.

But enough about that. I’ll be rooting for the Pats, and maybe I’ll watch more than 5 minutes of play time this year. Woo Super Bowl!

And now, since there are about 3,000 receipts that need to be mailed, I should really get started with the day’s envelope stuffing. In the meanwhile, here’s something to keep you laughing:


Surprise Writing Day

We got caught in extra traffic on the way to work today (crazy how that can happen when we pull out of our apartment complex, drive 3 miles up that road, and turn into my office building’s parking lot) so I called ahead from the car to tell them I was on my way and ask if someone could unlock the front doors for me on time and watch the lobby for 5 minutes. The message that picked up was different than usual, so I listened for a few minutes instead of immediately punching in the extension I wanted to reach – turns out the office is closed today and nobody told the receptionist (me). HA! I mean, yeah, I knew there was a company retreat happening for some departments, and I knew tons of people weren’t going to be in the building off and on throughout the week, but somehow it never quite got passed around to me that the building was officially closed for the day.

So Matt dropped me off at Starbucks instead of at work and I read while he ran some errands, which he’d been planning to take care of after he took me to work. And now I’m back home getting ready for an extra day of writing.

I got just under 1,400 words written yesterday afternoon, which is the most I’ve put down in one day since the end of October. That’s a very good thing, and I’m feeling good about moving forward. I forgot that we had plans to go to dinner at our neighbors’ place, though, so I had to stop earlier than I planned to get a shower and look presentable after several days of sweatshirts, yoga pants, and a sloppy ponytail. On the up side, we had a great time and I think we have new friends in the building, which is fantastic.

I’ve got a few emails to respond to, and then it’s back to writing. Woohoo!

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