Watch out for the salt….

Four weeks ago, my immediate management chain started preparing for the annual goat rope known as “Spring Review”.  Panties were bunched, upper lips steeled, and strategy sessions were held…

i attended.

Initial planning had me preparing, and delivering, a one hour presentation to our Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Chief Technical Officer (CTO) and the entire senior leadership group.

“This is our chance to shine!  To show them how good we are!”

Awww… Isn’t my new division boss cute?  She genuinely believed this…

Three weeks ago, things got more intense.  More strategic planning sessions were held.  Budgets were analyzed.  Programs were chopped or reorganized.  Facilities were documented.

i put together a few responses to targeted taskings.  Then went to the gym.

But wait!  Stop the presses!  We’re getting feedback from the front office — they don’t want technical stuff, they want management stuff!  We need to kick this up to a higher level review.

Cool!  The “Horsie/Duckie” stuff is in my wheel house!  Even better…And my one hour presentation is now only going to be 30 minutes….  Well.  Look at the time?  That’s lunch!

So by last week – in the home stretch – we did a complete 180 degree turn.  New strategy.  New “required” presentation charts.  Those other charts they asked for three weeks ago?  Put ’em in back up… Just in case anyone asks…

Time for my horseback riding lesson.  i’ll get right on that tomorrow.

By the time we got to the “Final Friday Strategy Session” before our big “Monday Review” today?  i was only on the hook for a 20 minute pop.

Damn good thing i hadn’t wasted a single minute of the past few weeks working on my one hour presentation.

i worked an 8 hour charity event on Saturday.  Sunday?  Took four hours out to ride my bike to a minor league baseball game and enjoy some time in the sun.  Poked at the presentation over the weekend.  Submitted it to management at 7pm last night.

And delivered it this morning.  To rave reviews.

So the lesson for all of you parents fretting that your little hippie kids are farting around with those theater classes when you think they should be studying hard sciences, or getting trained in something that can provide a living wage?

Let ’em take that improv class.  It’ll pay off when they’re older.

Oh, and it also genuinely helps to not give a shit about your own career advancement….

Slacker tactics

With my personal life in overdrive for the past few months, i’ve been a bit distracted in the office.  Buying property, getting my old house prepared as a rental property, and moving – not to mention the requisite “party time” – has interfered with what used to be long days in the office.

And this is a good thing…

Yesterday, i was on the hook for a 2:00 PM presentation on “Future System Requirements” to a group of clueless geeks researchers.  This has been on my calendar for two weeks.  Being in full-blown procrastination mode, i planned to work on it that morning… knowing i could pull off a rectal extraction on the topic in about two hours! 

But it was not to be… Due to an unexpected, and delightful, opportunity to spend a little time with a friend*, i took an early lunch hour**, and for some reason, the afternoon presentation was about the last thing on my mind.  Returning to the office around 11:00 am, i realized that it was FRIDAY, and i was on the hook for my weekly two hour professional studies seminar.  Since i’m taking the final test MONDAY, bail out was not an option… Yikes…

Finishing the seminar, i scrambled back to my office, and spent an entire fifteen minutes whacking together a few charts that could tell a basic story.  Confident with the general subject matter, i’ve tap danced in front of more difficult audiences, on more difficult subjects, so i knew i could pull it out of my ass and it wouldn’t be terrible.

Arriving at the other building for the presentation, i encountered a researcher wandering aimlessly through the hallway***, and i asked where the meeting was to be held. 

wandering scientist:  “It was cancelled!  Didn’t JB copy you on the e-mail?”

daisyfae: “you’re shitting me?”

Naturally, i wandered into JB’s office asking about the meeting – and got an “Oh, SHIT!  I forgot to copy you on the cancellation notice!”.  Gently barked at him about “time management” and “communications breakdown being more damaging when we’re all overloaded”.  Even threw in a “look, you need to rescheule this ASAP since i’m gone for two weeks, buddy…”. 

Snarling just a bit, i left his office, heading back to my own… and rather than use the unanticipated hour to work ahead on the next looming “deadline”?  i grabbed a cup of coffee and cleaned out my e-mail folders… i mean, it was Friday afternoon and all…

All that theater training sure comes in handy sometimes.

Even Einstein needed to fuck off sometimes

* yes.  it was EXACTLY what you’re thinking…

** hour or two… but who’s counting?

*** they tend to do this.  if i were still supervising, i’d have RFID chips embedded in their ears for tracking purposes.  maybe with a “shock collar” function just for giggles…


With a chance of Forgetfulness… Now staring at 4 hours to go, and there are a few items still uncollected/packed, i’ve got a work telecon in an hour and a half, and here i sit farting about on the blog… can you say “Procrastination”?

Both azahar and compu-diva did this, and it pretty much captures my current “brain cloud”.  Although i left out “muddled-shit” and “fucking off”…

Fun stuff… Hey! Look! A seagull!

lef out \

Cloud your own brain…