It’s My Deadline and I’ll Cry if I Want To

I cried at work today. These tears had nothing to do with a death, or an accident, or a fight with a loved one. These tears were shed out of frustration.

Usually I get angry- spitting mad- when the stupidity of the job gets to me. Today they broke me. I went through a stack of Chipotle napkins (note to self…must get more Chipotle) while hiding behind my cubicle wall so no one could witness my demise. I MUST have been utterly frustrated to actually call someone and cry on their shoulder. I think I scared them. Mamasoo is known as a bitch, not a crybaby.

So, not only was management being reluctant about giving me answers I needed to complete a report I’m working on, I was forced to delay a deadline- twice- because of it. And of course, when I get frazzled, I get sloppy. I get so angry and upset that I don’t think things through. The report I had to prepare for this certain manager in order for her to get answers from her manager had to be redone three times. Information passed to me months ago was recanted when brought up, and it skewed the results of the report. At least the CRETIN that scurried over to the manager to inform them I was running the routine wrong (using their information) called and apologized for “getting me in trouble”. Then, after correcting the report (not my fault), I neglected to correct a comparison (my fault). A nasty email from the manager informed me of that error. I was already into my fifth napkin by then (they’re made without bleach and from 90% post-consumer recycled paper! At least I’m earth-friendly while I cry…) and this just made it worse.

I think I snapped today because lately I’ve been at everyone’s beck and call to produce reports, drawings and proposals for upper management. And we all know upper management needs these reports IMMEDIATELY and extremely dumbed-down because they don’t want to have to “think about it”, IT being the results of the report.

But when I need something on a deadline- which happens EXACTLY FOUR TIMES A YEAR- no one takes me seriously. I was actually questioned in a meeting with the above-mentioned manager about my deadline date. Management has no idea what my process is, so why am I being questioned? I guess the point of this part of my rant is that I don’t question management’s deadlines, why should they be questioning mine? As it turns out…it doesn’t look like I’ll get any answers until the MIDDLE OF THE MONTH anyway!

Okay, I just realized that the middle of the month for me means PMS. That…might explain my reaction to this situation, but seriously, it’s still a situation. Do I like being everyone’s whore? Do I like being everyone’s circus bear- jumping through hoops and juggling balls? My business contacts love me- they’ve told me so many, many times. My boss has doled out the rare nuggets of praise over the years. But Upper Management? One member of Upper management…has referred to me as “Autocad Lady” and won’t speak to me in elevators. Another member has ignored me at the mall. And never respects my deadlines. Am I destined to be a peon the rest of my working career?

I left the answer to that question hanging until I got home. I had two hours of commute to think it over. And the answer is yes…I am destined to be a peon for the rest of my working career. And I’ll tell you why.

Even though I’ve supervised many people, have made crucial decisions and worked on multi-million dollar projects in past jobs and am perfectly capable of being Upper Management it will never happen. Requirement number one to move up the corporate ladder is that you must kiss ass. And the LAST thing I do is kiss ass. I usually tell it like it is, and if I don’t like you, you know it.

Requirement number two is you have to attend meetings. I think meetings, especially weekly meetings, are a waste of time. They’re usually run by the wrong (read “stupid”) people and end up not accomplishing what they’ve set out to do. Plus being late is a pet-peeve of mine, and it’s a requirement that you MUST wait for Upper Management to show up, since they’re so busy doing other things they can’t possible get to a meeting on time.

Requirement number three is you will probably have to work late. No, let me rephrase that. You’ll probably have to stay at work late. Doesn’t mean you’re necessarily working. You might have taken a LONG lunch hour with the contractor-dujour and need to catch up. You may be trying to get Lady Gaga tickets for your kids. You may be surfing p0rn sites (even though our company doesn’t let you on anything remotely suspicious…) But whatever the reason, you’ll be working late. Me? Sorry- I have a family to go home to.

Requirement number four- you have to torture the people under you. After all, they are the people who make you look good. You have to harass them to get you reports that are all ready available if you would have just listened to your underlings when they told you where to look. You have to harass them to print things out for you because it really is too much trouble to find the print button in the document you have open. You have to harass them to make even minor corrections on reports that you’ve created because you’re too busy to make them yourself. Seems the higher you go up the corporate staircase, the less work you actually have to do?

Notice the money didn’t even come into consideration. I wouldn’t trade my freedom at the job and the freedom at home to make the salary these managers make. I’ll stay where I am, thank you. Frustrations and all. As long as I have recycled napkins and a shoulder to cry on.

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