Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Sugar Free Gum Makes You Fart A Lot

It’s 1:03pm . .I started ‘work’ and I use the term loosely at 9:15. Yep, I can start anywhere between 7:30am and 7:30pm as long as I do a minimum 7 hour shift but of course being on an hourly rate, I’m trying to work 8 hours a day minimum.

I’m still waiting for the permanent Executive Assistant position to be approved by Premier’s Department and until it is I am a 'floater' (there's another girl in the position, who's contract doesn't expire until the end of October, and on the off chance they reject the new one she'll probably stay so a 'handover' is a little premature).

My boss is frustrated, HR are frustrated, I'm frustrated . . .it's just a wait and see, sit and look busy time! They don't seem to mind paying me to do jack shit but I'm sure getting the shits with sitting there dragging out the simplest of tasks. Despite three people taking a voluntary redundancy in the Admin area, they still don't have anything to pass on to me . . .I really hope the new job is going to be a little more hectic.

I knew the wheels of Government moved slowly. For instance, I received a 'rejection' letter yesterday for a position I applied for in May but this is now ridiculous it’s been 3 weeks since I was offered and accepted the position!

However, it isn't all bad my hourly rate has been increased almost to my pre-redundancy pay level unheard of given that I'm hired through an agency who must be charging me out at about $75 an hour to cover their super contributions and commissions!

I’m putting my hand up for pretty much anything within my area of expertise and anything outside it for that matter to keep me busy during the day. Frankly, I’d rather be at home spring cleaning and tackling the weeds, pool and cobwebs but time is money so my bum is remaining firmly on my red ergonomic chair in my soulless cubicle. (That's another thing, I can't put the Wonder Wall back up until I have a permanent office space which I'm very keen to make homey, and my own).

My workload in the past 3 weeks has comprised:

4 x (Less than 60 pages each) Procedure Manuals: Business Services, Reception, Records Management and the Collation of Board Papers "How To"
1 x HR Induction Package for new Contractors
5 x Very short Business Cases for the establishment of new positions
5 x Position Descriptions
3 x Online Advertisements
Detailed floor plan of who's who in the zoo
Hand collation of 30 Land Sale Contracts (at least I got to stand up for that)
1 x Minutes of an IT Committee Meeting
Prettyfy the Financial Statements before submission to Parliament
Update of a contact spreadsheet for an event invitation
Type up the OH&S Incident reports for the past financial year
And today . . I’ve been given some User Acceptance Testing and asked to break a new application . .I’m trying my bestd!
These are all things to 'keep me busy' and justify my existence and hardly taxing the brain or the imagination.

Now I don’t know about you but apart from the initial Procedure Manuals for which I was hired in the first place, that’s not exactly an overburdening of work considering I’m now in my ninth week.

Bear in mind, I don’t deal with clients, the phone never rings, people don’t chat much and only Rick with 'da limp' interrupts my incredibly boring day for about 15 minutes. I am distracted only by the odd dissenter who's aware of my impending position and trying to get their point across in the hope I'll mention it to the 'boss'. Not a smart idea . .it's called 'white-anting' and pretty dangerous territory.

As my esteemed colleague Rick wi' da limp said, "Just walk up and down with some papers in your hands and people will think you're busy. Whatever you do, don't tell them you have time on your hands!" (Gotta love a Public Servant with 22 years under his belt!)

Now if it wasn’t so serious, and my - and Australia's - tax dollars weren’t paying for this . . .it would be funny!

If only I didn't have a severe case of writer's block, it would be a great opportunity to start a post bank. The most exciting thing I've come up with over the past two weeks is realising that sugar free gum makes you fart! A lot!


Mim said...

I've heard that about SF gum - wow. I HATE being bored at work and can completely sympathize. Can you listen to an ipod? books on tape always make the day go faster for me. I hope that new position works out for you soon - tough world out there ain't it?

River said...

I hope you get the new position too, with more work involved. There's nothing worse than trying to fill time and look busy while being bored to yawns. I spend a lot of time standing at the checkout wishing I was somewhere else, doing something else. It's odd how the customers seem to all rock up at once so we're swamped, then there's no-one at the checkouts for sometimes ten-fifteen minutes.

Rowe said...

Ha, I had a very boring job quite a few years ago albeit in a nice office with gorgeous veiws over the city. I could have checked in every morning, hi, disappeared until lunchtime, hi, still here, gone AWOL again until home time, then hi, bye, see ya tomorrow and no-one would have batted an eyelid.

Alan Burnett said...

For someone who claims to have writers block you don't do bad. These glimpses into other people's lives are always quite interesting. There is a group in the UK called Mass Observation who for the last 80 years have been studying the detail of individual's lives in order to better understand the workings of society. As you can see, when I'm bored I just write long comments on blog posts.

Sarah Lulu said...

Oh dear ...I can't stand boredom ..I go into my head stsrt thinking and then I go slowly crazy ....

Could you perhaps write a short novel?

ian said...

I remember being out for a meal with friends in the oil industry. They were both leaving Ireland for the Gulf, having seen their company messed around by the government here. One had spent the morning out of the office. "What were you doing?" "I sat on the river bank and watched the fish".

Brian Miller said...

apprec the email, i will reply soon but wirk has picked up this week so i will take it. hoping that the beurocracy picks up the pace a bit. sugar free gum eh? maybe an alternative fuel source...hmmm...hang in there...sounds like you are making the most of it...

nick said...

Almost as bad as the non-job I had last summer where I spent most of the day writing blog posts, visiting blogs and reading the online papers. I finally quit in utter frustration at being given so little work. I hope your new job is approved very very soon.

Roy said...

Huh! You've just described how much of the state of Rhode Island's government departments work.

Anonymous said...

I too, have heard this. Something about those artificial sweetners( aspartame, in particular )that can cause a methane build-up in your system; ergo, the sweets go in and the gas comes out-LOL!

And sounds like the reviewer needs a kick in the arse to get things up to speed!

laughingwolf said...

wrong, been chewing that stuff for at least 20 years and not increased my methane production in the least!

fingers, toes and eyes crossed they give you your job by tomorrow!

ebony said...

I hope you get a more exiting job! Maybe meanwhile you can try making officefarts ..?You know, I've got a writer's block too!! It's not fun at all.

Leah said...

I'd never heard that about aspartame! Hah! A very useful weapon.

I enjoy hearing about your job, even if it is putting you to sleep.

I'm rooting for you on the new position.

VE said...

7 HOURS? HOURS? I have to admit, I was stressed over 7 minutes of work...

Anonymous said...

Farting will relieve boredom, so stick with the sugar-free!

Bimbimbie said...

Hmmm bet gas is the only thing your office chum has produced of any significance in the past 22 years ;)

kj said...

baino my dear, you have my total sympathy. i hate being bored in an office. i was once paid $ 100 an hour for busy work and i lasted three months before i had to shake things up for myself and move on.

but did you say you're getting back to your old salary? that would be nice.

make sure nobody at work knows you blog. matter of fact, i say delete this post after we've all enjoyed it.


Baino said...

Mim I probably could listen to an ipod but the 'look' isn't good.

Yeh it's frustrating River . . .although I have something on my plate today so should keep me busy.

It's a bit like that at my job Rowe. It's only because I'm betwixt and between at the moment.

Good grief Alan, all they have to do is get onto Twitter, that'll tell them the minutia of people's lives.

Erm Sara? Writers block?

Ian there is a river and I did see a wobbygong the other day (small toothless shark) but being paid by the hour, my 'breaks' are short.

No worries Brian, good luck to you as well.

Yeh I remember Nick. Although I think this one will be great once I can get my teeth into it.

Ha! Roy some people are flat out, others are cruising. This place is a little different. It's a Government Corporation so has to 'make' money, not just spend it. Not everyone's on a go slow.

Subby It is true, they even put a warning on the packet that sugar free gum may have a 'laxative' effect but being the lady I am, I refrain!

Wuffa, you sure you're going sugar free! Certainly gives me a little flatulance (TMI I know)

Well Ebony, at least we enjoy reading other people's blogs, writer's block or not!

Haha . . only if you're prepared to use it Leah, I'm not!

Well it's not 'stressful' VE, not yet anyway. If I could afford it, I'd take some time off. Heaps to do at home.

Hmm he's an interesting guy Bimbimbie, actually he seems to work pretty hard, just a bit jaded and old school.

kj, there's nothing disparaging here but no, they don't know I blog. They don't know anything about me other than I'm the contractor down the back writing processes. Yep, I got a raise as a 'retention' payment. Nice eh?

Anonymous said...

I hope things spice up a bit for you soon :)

Jill said...

So did NOT know this! Sugar Free huh? Well, are you entertained by this or is the odor forcing you out??

I have had SIMPLY NOTHING of interest to post lately...I am wondering if after a few years of blogging if I am TAPPED out!

Love your stuff...even if you FEEL as if you are blocked! QUITE entertaining!

otin said...

Hot wings and Nachos accomplish the same goal!!! FMAO!!!!!

tut-tut said...

Hope this resolves SOON, and in your favor!

my WV is "swooking"; wonder if that's any fun?!

Tom said...

ha! never knew that.

More cartoons, please; your drawing and penmanship is awesomesauce!

Elizabeth McClung said...

I hope you get the new position, and that you get more work which challenges you. Until then, when I was doing some odd job temping as a clerk for a barrister's course, I was bored, and had the same underwhelming things to do, so I started looking very carefully at all the equipment and found that most of them I could call and get a course in how to use them and so I did and asked for the 'advanced course' and so I spent much of a week learning how to do things with our copier that no one knew could be done like programming it to make booklets, staple them, or make two different booklets, staple and seperate them into batches, or copy on the other side inversed and such. I then proceeded to do a few of these (due to boredom) and impressed the boss who felt I was aquiring skills simply by being hired by him (I am not sure how got the credit but that is a head of a barrister's college for you).

So, instead of the farting plan, you could get instruction on how to use machines that glue bindings or anything else you can find which says, "Call this number" in the manual or on the machine - even better than walking with purpose with papers in one hand, or holding a folder just out in front as if looking for the person you are about to give it to.

Grannymar said...

Nothing worse than too little to do at work. At least you are being paid for it. Fingers crossed that the Job Fairy moves things along very soon.

Kath Lockett said...

Baino, once the position is well and truly yours, you'll be able to make a lot more things happen, be part of more real work etc. This waiting game is certainly frustrating but will be worth it in the end.

As for farting, hell, all I've gotta do is bend over to pick something up!

e said...

sugar-free gum??? Who knew???

I hope things improve for you quickly...

Colette Amelia said...

I was just going to enquire about the new position! HMM must be the aspertame...and here all I thought was it only rotted your brain...but the office as well you say?

Ribbon said...

Baino I love you 'cause you write about farts!

:) Ribbon x

Miles McClagan said...

Oh that Jack Shit...I wish he had a blog...the adventures he gets up to...

California Girl said...

hahahahahaha! we have a small office w/ 3 co-workers. wouldn't take long to know who was smelling it up.

Renee said...

I was wondering what the heck was happening with that, but since I know government moves in slow motion, I thought it was just rolling along.

And as far as dropping babies, that is a typical anxiety dream. There is a feeling that you are missing something so you are holding on to the baby tight and still not believing that you have a hold on him.

Your husband was taken away from you so you know that things can fall in a matter of moments.

Relax darling and have more faith that things will turn out well.


Arija said...

Baino, I just popped over from Renee's blog. Your dream about dropping babies is quite interesting and not knowing your circumstances I cannot say exactly what it means, but dreaming about babies is a sign that somthing new is coming into your life, why you are wanting to drop it, I have no idea.

Glad you have found a paying occupation. Finding work at the moment is not at all easy in this wonderful country of ours.

Ronda Laveen said...

Oh, Baino the gum tip is so funny! I'll have to try it at the salon. But luckily, my space is up stairs and most of the people are down stairs.

I hate being bored at work. I hope you get something you can set your teeth into soon. Thanks for the update on your job situation, I was wondering.

Christopher said...

Being bored at work is the worst thing. I seem to go through periods of being either swamped or having to scrounge around for things to do (although I consider myself quite lucky to work in a place where there's ALWAYS something to do).

And I'll stay away from the sugar-free gum. Or at least I'll try to. I seem to be one of those people who'll eat anything that co-workers set out in the "free for all" area of the kitchen. I've also been known to down at least two pots of coffee by myself, although if there's one thing that makes office boredom even worse it's being wired on caffeine.

Candie Bracci said...

LOL!Ah this is why!:D

jay said...

Oh, I hate that. There is nothing worse than being employed to do nothing, but at the same time, look busy. It makes me crazy! Poor you.

Xylitol is usually the sweetener in sugar free gum here, and - just a handy hint - it's toxic to dogs. I've heard of greyhounds ending up in doggy ER because of it.

Good luck with that job! I like the idea of asking to go on courses!

Baino said...

Cinnamon I should have kept quiet. Yes the workload is increasing and makes the day go faster. Pretty interesting stuff too.

Now I'm not saying the office is full of flatulence, quite the opposite it's ME who's chewing the gum!

Otin! Ring of fire?

Haha! toots, verification doesn't lie!

Sorry Tom, not mine . . . love it!

Welcome over Elizabeth. Yes the more challenging work is on the way. My old job was Practice Manager so there's not a machine that's been able to foil me yet! I'm quite used to getting my hands dirty. j

GM I'm very grateful to them for upping my rate. I can relax a little now. It's been a tough 9 weeks on the lower salary but I'm saving the bubbly until there's some certainty.

Kath that's the frustrating thing. I can't really get my teeth into anything at the moment but people are realising that I can do a lot of stuff so work is coming my way. You sound like my granny. We had to boycott silver balls on the trifle for fear she'd shoot the cat!

Thanks e, it's a lesson in patience. I'm not very good at patience.

Nah Collette, no evidence of wayward pfftry in the office but it does make me a bit windy!

Ribbon . . what can I say, 'funny as a fart'

Oh Miley . . me too!

Renee. Thanks sweets. Slow motion doesn't cut it! Yes things can fall . .so we have to rise eh?

Hi Arija, nice of you to drop by. I drop babies all the time . . seriously. About 18 months old and they wriggle from my grasp. I've always had work but have had to compromise my previous salary. Things are looking up.

Ronda! Who'd know with all your aromatherapy oils and such. Actually yesterday I was given a 175 page tender to format so it's kept me pretty busy today!

Chris, it's always the blokes pinching the freebies! Two pots of coffee! You must be bouncing off the walls!

LOL back Candie!

Really? Well I keep my gum well away from my dog. Nothing but Benefuls Healthy Weight Management and the odd bone. God I wish someone would feed me a calorie controlled diet.

Anonymous said...

@jay, that xylitol is some pretty bad stuff. Hadn't had any Trident in years( waaay back when it has saccharine ). Got sick off the first piece with the xylitol 8^(

Melanie said...

mate....this is a seriously good time to take up knitting lol. Ok ok i know that aint gonna happen but I feel for your boredom. A bored mind can make you go bonkers. Clearly I get bored a lot. You dont want to end up like me:)
hang in there and make us more funny lists

ashleigh said...

It might be Maltitol or something like that in the sugar-free gum. One of those yummy modern chemical things that is not fully digested, leading to farts and what is euphamsitically termed "anal leakage".

Not For Jellyfish said...

That was fun! I hope you get what you want!