Monday, March 14, 2011

Blerg at the office

Ok, so at my office, there is an unavoidable task, which I will call "The Blerg" (because I hate it), which must be done, but not by me. What I mean is, although other people with my job at my office have to do The Blerg, I usually do not. When at one point, my coworker asked me if I wanted to lateral into the job I have now, I declined, and I told her expressly that it was because I never wanted to have to do The Blerg. She assured me I would not, because the office was hiring one person whose job it would be to do The Blerg for every department, so none of the rest of us would have to. So I moved into the job I have now without worry.

But now, due to budget cuts, when The Blerg Lady left, the powers that be did not replace her. So now each department must take care of their own Blerg work. I have not had to deal with it yet because my coworker normally does The Blerg. But this week, we are on Blerg duty, and my coworker is "conveniently" taking vacation. I say "conveniently" with a slightly, but only slightly, sarcastic tone. It's only slightly sarcastic because her daughter is on break from school, so it makes sense that this week would be the week she takes vacation. But I can't leave out an element of sarcasm in my tone because she always takes vacation or sick days on the days when there is something unpleasant coming our way, leaving it to me to take care of it.  

I used to think this was just the product of my resentful imagination. You know, how when you really hate doing something but have to do it anyway, you start looking for people to blame it on, even though it can't possibly be anyone's fault. I'm usually pretty good at stopping this tendency in myself. So although at first I'd begin the resentment build-up over it, I'd just make myself do some yoga breathing exercises and calm the heck down before I had a melt down over something ridiculous. But after awhile, even other coworkers starting noticing her, shall we say, fortuitous timing. And then when those coworkers left, even their replacements noticed it. so I know it's not just my imagination.

The first time I had to do The Blerg was a few months after I started working here. The was before The Time of The Blerg Lady, back when, like now, each department did their own Blerg work. My job at that time did not include Blerg work, but my coworker decided to take some time off at Christmas, so she just announced to me that I could not take any days off around Christmas because she needed me to be there to do The Blerg. So, basically, she banned me from taking vacation so I could be there to do her job. Resentment. I definitely had it then.

Then The Blerg Lady came, and I moved jobs to have basically the same job as my coworker. Then The Blerg Lady left, and now I can't even get resentful about having to do The Blerg, because now it's technically part of my job. But my coworker usually has to take care of it because the Blerg work that comes in usually relates her area of expertise. This week, however, it doesn't matter. I have to do all The Blerg. And I'm trying not to resent her for it.

Before she left last week, I told her that I would be working from home on this coming Friday, for part of the day, because I had to take my cat to the vet. I told her I'd have the office called me if any Blerg stuff came in, and I'd come in then to deal with it. Her reaction? "Oh, Friday's are terrible." Translation: actually, you are not taking your cat to the vet for his EKG, at least not on Friday. So basically you have to do The Blerg, and it will be even worse than you thought. The sing-song "HA ha!" was just implied.

I really, really don't want to get annoyed with my coworker over what is surely coincidence (and not behavior that is at best conscious indifference and at worst intentional offloading of unpleasant work), but I'm afraid that there isn't enough coffee in the world to make me be reasonable about this.  So for the next week, expect me to be cranky, tempered by a slight hope that my super power will work so that all my complaining here will prevent any actual Blergness.  Cross your fingers for me, y'all.

3 comments:

LBx4 said...

Okay.. so, I have to know in detail about your duties in this Blerg thing.. lol!

JLR said...

I would explain it but that would make my blog vulnerable to discovery by nosy coworkers, some of whom I seriously suspect are mentally unstable.

But you aren't missing much, it's really boring. I hate it because it is something you have to drop everything for and do right away, and it inevitably comes in at the worst possible time, like when you are trying to leave for the weekend. And it involves making quick decisions with minimal information, which I am so not good at. And then you have to go explain your decision to the Powers That Be, which always leads to me inadvertently demonstrating to them just how bad at it I am.

Deals On Wheels said...

It sounds like what my coworker calls the "OAC" report. I still don't understand why THAT is part of my job. Grumble.