November 17, 2003

Weekend Stuff

Nothing like a three day weekend to rejuvenate the soul and remind you just how much you hate Mondays. I took Friday off because I had to drive up to the Cities for work Thursday afternoon and I just plain didn't feel like driving all the way back Thursday night or Friday morning. That, and I'm a lazy guy.

The work-related crap on Thursday was a corporate get-together so the publication company I contract with for IBM could pat the appropriate backs of the worker bees who performed well over the year. I guess I don't have a problem with such ceremonies, but I just don't like taking part in them. It seems like wasted time to me. I would rather be out with people I want to be out with rather than being told to attend a back-patting exercise with people I never see and frankly could care less about.

I think I irritate some of the upper-management types with my "don't care" attitude, and truthfully that doesn't really bother me. One guy, Frank, in particular, is obviously nonplussed with my disdain for corporate game-playing and my refusal to play by the rules he enjoys adhering to.

You see, for me, my job is my job, it is not my life. While I'm at work, I do my work (and occasionally blog), but as soon as I exit the building at the end of the day, work is behind me. I just don't think about it any more. My work is not what defines me. It's what pays the bills. As I understand it, this is a very Generation Xer mentality. We do good work, us Gen Xers; just don't ask us to do too much or sacrifice our lives outside of work.

Frank doesn't know how to approach me beyond a hand shake and a "how ya doin." He hasn't known how to deal with me ever since I turned down a managing editor position earlier in the year. "But, that's the next step. This is a promotion. Doesn't everyone want to be promoted?" Nope. I want to write. I don't want to manage. Next question. So, Frank tried to force me into the position by going past me over to my publisher. My publisher, knowing me, told Frank I probably wouldn't go along, to which Frank said to make me go along, to which I said I'll quit, to which Frank huffed but ultimately fell silent on the issue. Therefore, when we do see each other, we don't have much to say, because he doesn't understand me, and I don't want to understand him.

Not surprisingly, I didn't win any awards Thursday night. Damn.

After the two hour back-patting ceremony, I was off to see Melissa. She's still swamped with enough school work to keep her busy till spring, if it weren't all due next week. She's stressed, to put it mildly. Her apartment is littered with interior design layouts, and pens, and markers, and freshly pulled out hair. Okay, no hair, but she is stressed out enough to do just that.

One of the main things that keeps her going is the knowledge she'll be going to Hawaii with me this Christmas. This came as a surprise to her, and to me as well. I knew I was going to Hawaii, but then my parents offered to pay for Melissa's ticket too. I didn't know what to think of that. I mean, I hope they're not expecting a wedding or anything in return. Mom assured me she wasn't expecting that. She just wanted me to have company to do things with while I'm in Hawaii. Ooookayyyyy.

When I extended the offer to Melissa, she was shocked, to put it mildly. She kept thinking I was kidding around with her, and it would have been a really good joke to play on her, I have to admit it. Now that the reality has sunk in, she's obsessing about doing something nice for my parents, which is understandable, but she's starting to become obsessive about it. I mean, chill out, girl; these are just my parents, they're not royalty. Granted, they just shelled out over a grand for airfare for you, but don't over think things. It's actually fun to watch her over-ponder this. It's like watching a neurosis develop from scratch.


Regarding the on-going situation in Iraq: permit me to make a bit of a prediction here. No matter what exit strategy the U.S. implements, and no matter how stable we manage to leave that nation, the anti-war crowd will undoubtedly cry "retreat" and "failure" and "Vietnam." I say this because, prior to the war, the anti-war crowd claimed the U.S. didn't have any intention of staying with the rebuilding for the long haul. Once it became apparent that the U.S. did, indeed, have the gumption to stick it out despite casualties, the anti-war crowd cried "quagmire." So, now, the U.S. tries to expedite the transition of power and the anti-war crowd cries "abandonment." Crap on a cracker. And don't tell me for a second that this guy isn't a raving lunatic who, quite arguably, hates America.

UPDATE: Interesting.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Iraqi blogs just keep popping up all over. Granted, it's difficult to verify their authenticity and all that, but that can be said of about, oh, 75 percent of bloggers. Anyway, Omar has a few words for war protesters.

Posted by Ryan at November 17, 2003 10:10 AM
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