gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Exploding)
Long-time readers will remember that for a time I was working very hard to get a job as a public safety dispatcher. I was in the 99th Percentile on the POST exams, interviewed fairly well, and even made a few hire lists.

Then I got back to driving. When that ended due to my health, I came close to applying for a few dispatching jobs, but they would have required relocating, and with [personal profile] kshandra starting at EarthBaby, I didn't want to upset that apple cart.

Then I had my stroke.

Today, I keep hearing how the San Jose Police Department is hiring 19 dispatchers. Dates for the POST tests, hiring dates, starting salaries, the whole nine yards.

And I can't do it. Besides the aphasia, I get tired too fast. So one of my dream jobs is opening up literally two miles from me, and I can't bloody do it.

Yes, throwing things at the walls. Just the thing right now.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bosch)
I spent the day - after my writing class - enjoying the books, wifi, air conditioning, and comfy chairs at the Santa Clara library. As always, there were tons of cute little people getting books, awesome babies doing baby stuff, and general people watching. But there was this one guy.

We were sitting on the first floor, a great spot for the best air conditioning, with a table between us. While I was reading about Alcuin of Tours' influence on the court of Karl, King of the Franks, he was cold calling every single tech company in the valley.

I wanted to throttle him. First of all, this was a library. No cell phone zone. Be quiet. He wasn't particularly loud, but it was noticeable. Secondly, he was calling off a hand-written list, and asking about email addresses for HR and if they were hiring. Folks, we were 10 second from the library's computer room. He could have found all of that with web searches, and the librarian would have probably helped him post his resume online at the right headhunter sites. Thirdly, he was asking about assembly jobs. Don't know if this is a software term, but nobody does assembly in the valley anymore.

But what made me want to scream was when he got a call back. From his end of the conversation, it was an interview offer. An immediate one. He put it off.

He put it off.

If you are looking for a job, and somebody calls for an interview, you take the time they give you. You offer to be there that day. If one is fishing, one needs to be ready when you get a bite. I mean I feel for the guy, looking for work. We looked to be of a similar age. But I find myself hoping that sombobdy else jumped on that lead and is there finishing uo an interview right now.
gridlore: The word "Done!" in bold red letters. (Done!)
So far today:

  • Completely failed to remember that my coumadin level was tomorrow, not today.

  • Got most of the Playa dust out of Darby's air filter.

  • Took in recycling.

  • Dropped off a job application.

  • Did some vital shopping.

Now resting a bit before attacking the horror show that is our living room.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)

  • [profile] madelineusher has moved in with us for lessons in being Poor But Fabulous.

  • She's sleeping on our futon, so I'm certain she will be looking for a more permanent situation soon.

  • Pretty awesome kid. Now we get to corrupt her completely!

  • My work status has changed. I'm now working days Monday, Tuesday and Friday, opening on weekends.

  • This will help me maintain a better sleep schedule.

  • Applied to be a dispatcher with the city of Santa Clara.

  • Always looking for something better, y'know?

  • Life goes on.

gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - Smiling)

  • I appear to be on the verge of being employed again.

  • The new gig is as a Dispatcher/Reservation Agent for Classic Limousine Service

  • Went in for the interview, and immediately fell in love with the place.

  • They have office dogs.

  • Interview was easy, very informal.

  • After we were done, the owners sent me to the company that handles their payroll.

  • I need to go back tomorrow. I didn't have the right ID for the I-9.

  • Plus I need the information for direct deposit.

  • But yeah, I may well be gainfully employed as of early next week.

  • Originally, my plan after the interview was to roll to Kaiser to pick up some meds.

  • But since I was in the neighborhood, and hadn't been there in a year, I went to Lord & Sons' 7th St warehouse.

  • Caught up with some friends, and one boss who hadn't realized I had been gone. For a year.

  • Things appear to be going well there.

  • I do miss that job, but know that physically, it's not an option.

  • The best thing about the new gig?

  • KAISER!!!!!!

  • I won't need to change doctors.

  • Which, if you have the litany of problems and long history I have, is so important.

  • The starting pay is meh, but there is a raise after the 90-day probationary period.

  • Besides, I get office dogs!

  • Dogs who spent my entire interview on my feet.

  • They know a sucker when they see one.

  • The only drawback is I'll probably be working weekends, so no Baycon for me.

  • I'll live.

  • OFFICE DOGS!!!!!!

gridlore: One of the "Madagascar" penguins with a checklist: [x] cute [x] cuddly [x] psychotic (Penguin - Checklist)
Job interview, tomorrow at 1200hrs. Dispatcher/office for a limo service.
gridlore: The word "Done!" in bold red letters. (Done!)

  • Dishes done.

  • All the garbage taken out.

  • Cleaned the Foreman grill.

  • Updated my "application cheat sheet."

  • Contacted my social worker (message left)

  • Checked Craigslist for jobs.

  • Developed a cold.

That last one wasn't planned.

What I didn't get done was going out to the library to return books. Being able to renew them online is a good thing.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)
Just realized that I haven't updated my personal references for a while. So I'm asking for a little help.

If you have known me personally for more than five years, and are willing to give me a good reference, please reply with the following:

Contact phone
What you do for a living
How long you've known me.

All answers screened
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Keep Calm)
Just applied for an evening dispatching job for a plumbing company.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)
As I write this the new year has already begun making its entirely symbolic march around the world. Amazing how much significance we give to an entirely artificial and arbitrary moment, yes?

I was thinking about skipping the traditional year in review, simply because 2011 was one of the hardest years for me since I first got sick. At this time last year I was unable to breathe, battling doctors and the California disability system. I spent much of the first quarter of 2011 deathly ill, to the point I was openly questioning my ability to live to see my 45th birthday. I was hospitalized, on oxygen, and flat out told that the career I had come to love was barred to me for medical reasons. I went from being a cheerful, profane truck-driving fool to a wreck in less than a month. And that hurt. I've spent most of 2011 recovering, trying to slowly rebuild so semblance of what I used to be, Part of this is trying to deal with the fact that my days as a blue-collar redneck are over.

But the more I tried to dwell on the negatives, the more my annoyingly optimistic nature kept pushing me. Yeah, I'm not well. But I'm one hell of lot better than I was a year ago today. Yeah, I'm never going to push a truck for eleven hours a day. That just means I have no excuses for not getting back into school and doing something else. Change is hard for me. I like my ruts. But I'm too damn young to curl up and wait for the end. So I'm taking classes as we can afford them. I'm going to contact my social worker and have him help me plan a way to get into a community college program taking advantage of every available aid package. [personal profile] murphymom turned me onto a site where I can challenge some course requirements. Even if I just get a business administration A.A. that will help me turn these decades of experience into something other than another grunt job.

I can't even complain about my personal life that much.[personal profile] kshandra and I celebrated our 20th anniversary last May with a nice trip to Reno. Some big plans for the summer fell through, but we did make Renovation and had a blast. While we didn't actually get to any baseball games this year, the Giants did keep me company and made the pennant race exciting. Now I have a surprising 49ers team in the hunt for their sixth Lombardi trophy. I've discovered the joys of our local library, been reading history like mad, and there's enough decent stuff on the TV to keep me entertained. I'm lucky to have awesome friends and family who have been there when we needed help.

Even now I can see that 2012 is not going to be without challenges. Barring a miracle, I'm losing my Kaiser coverage in June. I haven't actually been in a formal classroom environment in decades, so I'm really nervous about that. Money seems like it will always be an issue, and of course, looming over everything, is my health. But I'll deal. I'm Infantry, we don't quit.

Normally, I dislike resolutions. I prefer to think of them as goals. Here are a few for 2012:

  • Continue to improve eating habits and exercise.

  • Wear my damn teeth everyday.

  • Write. I have a project now, but I don't want to fall out of the habit.

  • Keep my eyes open for a good job that I can do.

  • Get out more. Get involved.

  • Make at least one Giants home game this season.

For Offhand Manor, it's to continue the decluttering and get the damned art framed and up on the walls. Which reminds me, I really need to clean the floors... ah well, life goes on.

and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Happy New Year, y'all.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (V Governments Afraid)
Being a good citizen, I follow the City of Santa Clara on Twitter. Just now they posted openings for seats on several commissions. These are volunteer spots that do the fiddly bits. I just emailed the city clerk for information on applying for one of the two open seats on this one:

The 7 member Historical & Landmarks Commission acts in an advisory capacity to the City Council in all matters pertaining to historical places and landmarks. This Commission provides advice on the names and renaming of streets, museums and the establishment thereof in the City, and the marking and preservation of historical landmarks and places.

I figure that it will be at least moderately interesting, give me something to do, and look good on my resume when I'm ready to go back to work someday.

Hell, if I really like I might run for the City Council!
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Work - Truck)
In early October I got one of the periodic forms from California EDD to recertify my disability. Like a good drone, I took it to the Medical Secretaries office. They take forever to do anything; so I wasn't surprised that it took two weeks for the card saying "your paperwork has been mailed" to show up.

As an aside.. mail? Hand filled in forms? It's 2011!

A week after that I get a notice that my state disability has been terminated. Because it has been determined that I am able to do my "usual duties." Bullshit. I'm still on blood thinners, and my usual duties at every driving job I have ever held means bruising, bleeding, and fall risks. Extremely confused, I email my primary care physician asking WTF was going on. In response I got a two sentence reply that had four mistakes.. including the doctor misspelling his own name.

Even more perturbed (not to mention pissed off and frightened as all hell) I write back, and also contact my pulmonologist. Finally, I get some real answers. The PCP had told the state that I could resume limited work but not my old job. They ignored him. Dr. Butcher said that as long as I was careful I could go back to driving, but nothing like what I did at PODS or Lord&Sons. I figure that since my own doctor said "he can't perform his usual duties" I have pretty good grounds for an appeal. But out of curiosity, I check Craigslist to see who is hiring drivers. The second thing I see is an add for auto parts delivery. They want people with small open bed pick-ups. Which I happen to own, and they advertise a good starting wage. Call them, go through the overly perky automated system, get a call back. . .

I have an interview tomorrow at 1000hrs up in Belmont.

Uh, yeah.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Bucky Says No)

I can't tell what the hell it is that these people do! But from the ad, I do not want to work for them.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Me - Google)

  • To match the ones removed from me earlier.

  • Yes, the biopsy happened, with minimal hassles.

  • Now let's hope they actually hit the lymph node they were aiming for.

  • Still have great difficulty breathing.

  • I'm seeing my regular doctor tomorrow for what promises to be an interesting appointment.

  • Just finished my semi-regular re-reading of Dune. Every time I read that book, I find something new.

  • Never really latched onto the sequels, maybe I'll try again.

  • Been cruising craigslist looking for more health-appropriate jobs.

  • Then I realized.. they're back.....

  • This ad, in different variations, has been appearing since craigslist launched.

  • I really think it's a Dark Cult who worship a deity with a taste for Gospel Pianists.

  • Seriously, I must have seen this same ad over three dozens times over the years.

  • Thanks to everyone who helped out. Kirsten is breathing a little easier, and I'm at least wheezing a coughing in a slightly more relaxed way.

gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Death)
...were pretty well-founded, actually. A little over a week ago I developed a chest cold. This hooked up with my asthma and left me flat on the floor. Convulsive coughing which was triggering my gag reflex, no appetite whatsoever, unable to sleep, the whole deal. As an additional joy, the infection decided to take a tour of my head. On various days I was the world's leading producer of eye goop, couldn't hear or stand straight due to ear problems, or had a raging sore throat.

Since I already had a surgical procedure set for this coming Wednesday (doing a biopsy) I just took a week to heal. I've let work know in no uncertain terms I need to find an inside, loss physical stress job. I'm also starting to cruise Craigslist again looking for dispatching gigs.

Healing has begun. My desire for food is returning, I'm not coughing nearly as much, and I'm getting plenty of sleep. Sadly, I had to miss [ profile] kshandra's office party last night. Sounded like a blast at Campo di Bocce in Los Gatos.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Work - Lord&Sons)
I didn't get the job.

Adam called me in to thank me for applying, and to tell me who got it and why the decision was made. When I heard it was R., I immediately agreed he is an excellent choice. R started as a driver, has driven every route, moved to the warehouse and recently has been taking on more responsibility in regards to supervision and doing the paperwork. So his learning time for the position will be a lot shorter than mine would have been. R is also well liked, can take and give shit with the best of them, and I think he'll be a good fit for the job.

Of course, the first thing I'm going to do when it's announced that he's been selected is form a revolutionary movement to overthrow his Russkie ass. He'll love that.

While not getting the job is disappointing; it's not the end of the world. I still have a job I absolutely love, and now know where I need to work on for the next open position. I'm still looking at doing some classes, possibly online ([ profile] kshandra pointed out that one of Mission College's Business Certifications could be obtained entirely through distance learning) and I'll still scan Craiglist every so often for juicy offers.

Of course, I could always go back to my job at the Large Hadron Collider (tip of the hardhat to [ profile] blackfyr for finding the photo.)
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Work - Lord&Sons)
Had it this morning. I'd love to tell you how it went, but I really have no clue.

I'll let y'all know what happens.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Work - Lord&Sons)
My boss, Tim, was fired last week. We don't know why, but it wasn't a huge shock. He had been expressing extreme dissatisfaction with the company for some time.

I have applied for the position of Dispatch Manager. I interview Monday. So far, most of the drivers have encouraged me in this, and are even starting to act like I have the job. Some of the warehouse guys are also being supportive.

The advantages are many. Higher pay, a more stable work day that would allow me to take classes at Mission College, less stress on my body, more of a career track than just a job, and it will look good on my resume.

The drawbacks? Having to deal with the crap that goes on in the warehouse, one hell of a lot of responsibility, and the loss of the freedom of being a driver.

I'll take the trade.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Carpe)
It's a Word Document. Leave the address you want me to send it to, all replies screened.
gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Penguin - Carpe)
The craziness at work has prompted me to start looking around for a new job. I've found a listing on craigslist that is with a company I know and seems to offer better prospects. I just emailed my resume.

I need to accumulate some references. So, if you've known me in person for more than a few years, and more importantly have seen me work in busy or stressful conditions, please leave a comment giving the following

Phone Number
Years you've known me.

All comments are screened. Thanks in advance!


gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)

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