Tag Archives: overworked

Going Swimmingly

I am not at work today.

Since about last Friday I have had a headache that I just cannot shake off. I have been able to stun it into submission with paracetamol, but it struggles up after about two hours and comes back, nagging me from inside with its dull ache.

Yesterday at work I just got fed up with it, didn’t feel that I should take yet more tablets and so I just came home and lay down in  a dark room. I woke at work time this morning, realised that it was still there and so took today off too.

It seems to be coming from tension in my neck and upper shoulders. I have an exercise where I hold my left hand above my right ear and pull my head over to the right, and then vice versa. For the last few days I’ve only been able to move it a couple of inches.

One fairly obvious answer would be to go for a swim in our local leisure centre, but I am not comfortable exposing my torso to other people. It has three visible  though unattached scars, as though I was attacked by Zorro when he was drunk, and the pacemaker is a visible lump which makes me look like a cartoon character who has swallowed a tennis ball.

I was bemoaning these issues to Mrs Tin when she said “why not swim in the sea”. It turns out that she was only joking, but should have learnt by now not to do that. I sat in the garden in the sunshine, thought about it for a while, then came back into the kitchen and announced that I was going for it.

And I did. I walked down our beach (an uncomforable experience, there is a reason why our town is called Greystones and not Goldensands), left my clothes and towel in a little pile (the disadvantages I mentioned above were advantages here, when you have three scars and a tattoo no-one is going to steal your stuff) and strode manfully in.

It was cold, I can’t deny that, and I am sorry that I premiered the made-up word “Numbits” in yesterday’s post since it has a far more relevant place in today’s, but it was great. I swam for a few strokes, let waves fall over me, went and sat on the beach just at the water-line, so that the water would lap over and under my legs, and then did it all again.

At one stage the pockets of my shorts filled with air and I remembered that the Tinfamily, on holidays in Majorca or Malta long ago, used to refer to these as “side-butts”, thus adding nostalgia to an already fun experience.

I’ve been home about an hour now and have already eaten a bowl of strawberries with custard, three Jaffa cakes and a tomato-filled bagel. I am still starving.

And my neck is slightly better, I can roll it from side-to-side now without getting that sound as if a platoon of soldiers is marching on gravel.

It’s 1.20 now and I have an afternoon stretching in front of me that consists of blogging in the sun, reading in the sun and snoozing in the sun. If you’re going to pick a day to be sick, then try and pick a lovely one.

I’ll be back at work tomorrow, hopefully far browner than when I left there yesterday. I hope they understand.

Longer Days

The rain has just stopped, having fallen heavily all night. The sun is out, rising over the sea, a ball of almost-white yellow which may later turn to a more sun-like colour, yellow-orange and wearing a smiley face. A rayway of white light gleams across the snot-grey sea (really good description of its colour right now, I‘m surprised no-one ever thought of using it before), growing wider as it nears the shore.

As the song says, it’s looking like a beautiful day.

The only problem is that I know all of this because it is 6 am and I am sitting on the very first train into Dublin. I am on this train because I’ve been awake since 3.45, wondering how I’m going to do all the work that I have to do by next Friday, and so at 4.45 I got up and decided to get in early to at least make a start on it.

During January, February and March, as those of you around then will know, I worked the equivalent of 18 days in overtime in order, on top of my normal work, to help a firm of external consultants produce a report on our company which could later be used to attract Potential Investors. I would produce information, then reproduce it slightly differently, then produce different information altogether because it would turn out that they had actually not asked for the information that they needed. I answered questions, often several times, because, in my opinion, they never really knew what they were doing.

They finished their report, I announced that I was so fed up that I intended to leave the company, a lot of meetings were held and it was agreed that we would take on an extra staff member, that I would work normal hours and that I would leave every evening at 4.30. And this has worked well, I am happier at work, and I get home in time to see the Tinkids, or at least to hear them shout “hi” from behind the closed doors of their bedrooms.

Next week, as again you will all be tired of me banging on about, is the busiest week of our month, as GoldenEyes and I have five days to produce a 56-page report for Management. Since we got our new colleague this has become quite easy, and we have been able to manage it without working any overtime (we really are shit-hot). This month it is particularly important, as we have indeed found Potential Investors, and they are keen to see how we are getting on.

And the incompetent fuckers that produced the report last March are back.

The reason that they were taken on was so that Potential Investors would be directed to then rather than us, read their report, be stunned by its comprehensive and incisive analysis, and hurl money at us in bucket-loads, begging to be allowed to have just one-quarter of one millionth of one dectile (a word I learnt during the course of this week, people in business really do talk the greatest load of shit) of our glorious organisation.

The Potential Investors did indeed read the report, had one or two questions about it and, because the consultants don’t have a clue about what the report actually means, they have come running back to me. I’ve to answer more of their questions, once I figure out what it is that they need, and yet again, for the coming week be up with the lark (this morning I was up in time to cook its breakfast for it) and will be home with the, er, whatever that metaphor should end with.

On the bright side it’s a terrific test of the mindfulness course that I’ve just finished, a chance to see if I can remain calm, focused and free of stress while all of this goes on.

On the other side, I may just end up on the rooftop of the consultants’ building with a sniper rifle.

Free At Last

I’m on holiday!!!!

My week of 13-hour days is over. I didn’t mind doing it because of the circumstances that caused it, indeed sometimes I even felt a great buzz while I was doing it, but there is no doubt that something like that does take its toll.

This was most clearly evident in the morning that I got up at 4.20 because I couldn’t sleep. I then, of course, wrote a post that I hope that you found enjoyable, or at least coherent. I genuinely cannot remember one word of what I wrote and have decided never to read it, I am going to leave it there as an example of what happens when some idiot gets out of a warm bed (even if he can’t sleep, the important word there is ‘warm’) in the middle of the night to sit in a freezing kitchen and spout gibberish at the universe.

Anyway, I’m off now until January 2nd. There will be blogging, there will be reading, there will be TV watching. Or there may just be ten days of coma-like sleeping, which will be just as good.

My only remaining problem is present shopping, which I have done very little. I did do some of it online, and it was while I was doing this that I looked at the City Deals website of which I am a member, which daily offers large discounts, for one day only, on a wide and unrelated range of products and services.

So, for just fourteen euro and ninety-five cent (at current rates about a nickel, or two pence) I bought two 25kg bags of rock salt for keeping my driveway clear of ice.

As the teenage daughter of a friend of ours said recently (and we have all taken to saying ever since), “what the festive f**k?”.

I didn’t really picture just how much 50kg of salt was going to be. I could now de-ice the main runway at Heathrow and still have enough salt over to put on a bag of chips on the way home.

If not only Lot’s wife but his family, his household pets and the entire football team that he supported (Sodom United, you don’t want to let them get in behind your defence) had been turned into pillars he still wouldn’t have had as much salt as I have now.

It is worth it, though, if only on the principle that if you bring an umbrella to work it will not rain.

I reckon we’re in for mild winters here for a least the next fifty years.

Baby Steps

  • Turn on computer.
  • Start typing – anything will do.
  • Forget about how tired you are, how overworked you are, how sick you are of computers by the time you finish work each day.
  • Resolve that you will not moan this time about how tired you are, how overworked you are or how sick you are of computers by the time you finish work each day, because you run the risk of becoming typecast.
  • Reflect that if “typecast” means typing at the speed of a man with one arm in a sling, then you’ve been typecast pretty well since you first touched a keyboard.
  • Ignore this reflection and return to typing.
  • Save post and hit “publish”.
  • Read it over.

It’s dull, it’s pointless, it tells no story and it contains no funny jokes whatsoever.

I’m back.