Thursday, June 11, 2009

Hours, Money, Holidays, and Possibilities

For eight out of the last nine work-day's I've been coming in at 7AM to get some overtime and I discovered that I like coming in early. So, last week I submitted a request to my supervisor, SUSM, to see if I could change my schedule so I could come in at seven, take a half-hour lunch, and leave at 3:30PM rather than five.

She was gone last week, so I figured, while filling out the form, that she wouldn't approve it before this week and the stupid rules say that we who get our schedule modified can only start it on a Monday. Fine, I thought, I'll ask to start it on the 15th.

Monday, late morning-ish, I get an e-mail from her titled "FYI":
I just wanted to let you know that I have your Request for Alternate/Modified Work Schedule. I will need to talk to PJ & get back to you on this. He is out all week, but I think he may be coming in for a while on Wednesday – but not certain about that. I’ll let you know.
I wrote back with a simple okay, even though I don't understand why she can't just approve or deny it on her own. The other guys and gals who are clerks here don't want to regularly come in at 7AM if they're not getting overtime, so we'll be fully staffed until 5PM. And I asked for an earlier lunch, when no one else has one, which guarantees, on days that I'm here, that no one will ever have to leave for a late lunch again unless they WANT to. And that's a great thing, especially since I'm the one who usually has to leave late for lunch because some of the assholes I work with don't know how to make it there and back again (not a fucking Hobbit's tale) in an hour.

Without really understanding her reasons, I wrote back an okay because I figured if they decided in the positive, I'd get to start on the 15th.

Around 8:30 this morning she e-mailed me: "[ticknart] – did [the PJ] come see you about this yesterday?" meaning my request for modified work. I wrote back a simile "No." because he didn't.

Funny, I thought, isn't she the one who should be speaking with him? I think I made my position pretty clear by submitting the form that, you know, says I want to come to work earlier, take a shorter lunch, and leave earlier. Why should there be any discussion with me about it? Is it necessary for the two of them to know my motivations behind this change?

At nine she sent a reply: "He will be returning on Monday. The effective date on your request is Monday, so we will need to amend this if he approves it."

I printed and signed another request asking for the first day of this thing to be on the 22nd, since it has to start on a Monday. Not that it really matters this month because I'm going to be coming in at 7AM at least four days a week, and leaving at 6PM, so I can get a full 8 hours of overtime each week while it lasts.

Most of me doesn't think this'll get approved, though.

Sometime after I finished my first year here I submitted one of these so I would work four ten hour days each week and was denied because he didn't want to have an exhausted staff. A week after that denial I tried for a 9/8/80 schedule, but I'd stay here until 6PM (because my supervisor at the time -- I despised her -- came in at 7AM and I wanted less time with her around) and he said no to that one because the he'd have to stay until six with me, which made me feel real trusted. After that one was crushed, I quit for a while. I asked again about a year later with the schedule I'm asking for now and was denied because we had just lost two clerks and I should try again when more were hired.

So, here I am, trying again. Hoping to get an earlier shift, but preparing to once again be disappointed.

Why am I asking for this schedule?

Well, the main reason is because I'd have an hour in the morning where I could wear headphones and dick around on the 'netstuff. Sure, if I needed to get caught up, I'd use that time to do actual work, but I've been siting here writing this for the last 30 minutes and I spent much time (like more than an hour) launching hedgehogs into space. My best time is three days.

Also, though, the governator wants to cut my pay by another 5%, which would drop my pay by something like 14.6% from where it was last year at this time and that would make my buying a car in November an even stupider move and one harder to pay for than it was then. AND if the budget doesn't get passed by the end of the month the state may drop pay to all it's employees to federal minimum wage, or $6.55 an hour. (That's about $1100 a month before taxes, and since taxes take away 1/3rd of my pay not that would leave me with about $733, and my rent is, oh, $750 a month no matter how much I get in my paycheck. I know this sort of stuff is scare tactics, but it's like that old cliché: "Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.")

I figure that if I work until 3:30PM I'd be in a good position to get a second job, downtown here, in the evenings and on weekends. I could start at 4PM and work until 11PM, or whenever, to offset the probably loss in pay. Sure, I may not visit my family at Thanksgiving or Christmas so I can work, but at least I'd be getting by. (Besides I was already getting myself ready to miss Christmas because I may not be able to afford the new vehicle licensing fee increase. We'll see.) How well that'd work out, I don't know. Still, it'd be better than quitting, having no job, and moving in with my parents and hoping that I'd be able to find something up in Cowtown that's more than serving coffee or putting a prefabricated burger on a bun to people who just... well, I won't write anything overly nasty about them while I'm not working in that situation.

Now I sit an wait. I'm waiting for all of this bullshit to settle into place, but mostly I'm waiting to find out if my schedule will be changes so I can come in earlier, take a shorter lunch, and leave earlier each day I work here. And when the waiting for that is done, I'll wait for the next piece of shit to settle so I can make a move to prepare for the shit that'll come after that.

Cricket Christ, there sure is a lot of waiting for shit to happen in life, isn't there?