09 June 2009

Meaningless milestones.

As of today, I've officially been at my job for a year. Hooray. Wait. That's not strong enough. Hooray! I mean, I should be happy I have a job, right? God, I long for the day when we don't have to say that every time we mention something about our jobs. But, I have a job. I survived a round of layoffs, even.

I was pretty excited to start this job. Granted, much of the excitement was due to the fact that I'd been working at a horrible, horrible place. You know things aren't going to go well when you get yelled at on your second day. That our office was infested with rodents and a mouse died in my computer was just garnish, really. I still wonder if that was better than the two months of unemployment that preceded it.

But this new job, it was doing research and writing and I got to spend a week in Manhattan for training. How could it not be awesome, right?

My first few months there were fucking horrible. I've never, ever felt so stupid in my entire life. I've since told my coworkers that it felt as if I was being hazed almost, except there was no excessive drinking, nudity or spanking. So, what's the point? I'm convinced they make it as awful as possible to see if you can handle the job. They tear you down to build you back up again. When it was all over, everyone said I had done such a great job. Oh, well then all those tears in the bathroom were worth it.

I suppose it's good I went through that. I have a unique perspective in our office, as I'm the only person who has done the New York training. My coworkers weren't sure I was going to stay. They were convinced I was going to quit. Had the economy not already been in a shit state, I might very well have quit. Of course, things changed shortly after I finished. I'm glad I report to the Minneapolis office. It makes me feel like a part of the group.

Now I'm pretty well settled in. My boss loves me. I get tons of compliments on my work from colleagues, superiors and clients. I get to write every day. I'm doing some interviewing. I'm busy and I actually have to use my brain. And Lord almighty, am I learning about a wide variety of subjects. Also, I get to do trivia for like, a half hour every afternoon. It is the highlight of my day (other highlights of the work day: e-mails from The Boy I Currently Like and quitting time). I swear, it was one of the bigger selling points of the job.

Working in corporate America still feels weird. I do not like having to worry about my billable time. I hate saying things like "cross-selling." It all makes me feel so dirty. And while I'm doing good quality work, I'm not doing good work. Coming from the government and nonprofit sectors ... that's still hard for me to accept. Maybe I'll get used to it. Who knows? Maybe if I start making some money my tune will change.


Little Ms Blogger said...

Yay for you!

Time really does go fast. I started reading your blog just before you started this job.

I remember how excited you were to go to NYC and then ended up hating it.

I've wondered where you work - thinking Lexis-Nexis?

Jess said...

It's interesting to follow along with the life progression of the writers of the blogs you read, isn't it? Except nothing all that exciting ever happens with me.

Had I not stayed in Times fucking Square while I was in NYC, I might not have hated it so much. Working put a damper on things, too.

There's no way I'll ever divulge my employer. But I doubt anyone would have ever heard of it, anyway. I do use Lexis in my work, though!

j said...

there is a comment in me about "good" work being using your talents, whatever they be, in the biggest, most challenging and most interesting way that allows you to live a life that makes you happy without sacrificing your core values.

...but then again, that might be the decided-to-sell-her-ideals-to-law-school talking. hrm.

in any case, congrats on a year of employment and surviving the part where it makes you cry in the bathroom!

Jess said...

I think you make an excellent point. This is the first job I've ever had that has really challenged me. When I was doing good work, I'd spend at least half of my days fucking around on the Interwebs.

The people I work with are brilliant and very much like me -- liberal, into the arts in some fashion, politically aware, blah blah blah. I fit in, is what I'm saying, I guess.

And there is definitely room for me to grow. Another first. I've always worked in really small organizations that didn't allow me to go anywhere but outside the organization if I wanted more. I always wanted more.

I guess all of that is why I don't feel terrible about working in Corporate America. I know it could be worse.

Thanks, J! (You didn't sell your ideals to law school. You're just going to be able to use them in ways the rest of us could only dream about.)

Stereos and Souffles said...

Back up...a mouse died in your computer!?

Jess said...

Yepper. After the infestation was discovered, poison was put out in a variety of places. It became very obvious within a few days that a mouse had died in the building. On our floor. In our actual office. Somewhere near my desk. The smell was AWFUL. Like, it stayed in my nose and mouth for hours after I left work.

Cute (former) Coworker and I worked on a Saturday and I guess he came back to the office after leaving to go to the Twins game or something, and he finally decided to look in my computer tower, as I told him a mouse could certainly get into it.

He'd already searched in, around and under my desk without finding anything, despite the smell being strongest there. And lo, there was a tiny mouse in my computer tower. He heroically removed and disposed of it. I brought in Blondies to thank him.