Tag Archives: few minutes

Robots

Robots

A friend of mine sat on a lawn chair in the pool area of our apartment building, leaning forward with his head in one hand and a cigarette in the other.  He hadn’t taken a puff of his cigarette for a few minutes so his cigarette looked more like a long ash stick than an actual cigarette.  I approached him cautiously and said, “Hey Frank, what’s up man, rough day?” startling him out of deep thought, he jumped and once he realized who I was he mumbled, “Oh, Rob, hey man, what’s up?”

“You don’t look so good, what happened?” I asked.

“Oh my girlfriend blew up last night.” He said.

“Another one?!?” I asked amazed, “Isn’t that the third one this year?”

Yeah another one and, no, fourth one this year. Remember I had two in January. That was a disaster also,” he said throwing his hands in the air and slapping them down on his thighs, “I thought that if I have two on opposite cycles of the month then I wouldn’t have to wait around for them to, you know, be in the mood.  It worked out great for the first month but I couldn’t afford the maintenance, then when I kept getting their preferences confused, like which on likes wine and which one likes beer, they both exploded…. But I didn’t even see it coming this time.  I don’t get it Rob,” he continued, “I read the manual three, even four times and followed it exactly.”

“What model did you buy?” I asked.

“The Edu…educated Showpiece 5000,” he replied with a stutter.

“Holy shit, Frank, no wonder!  Why you messing around with such an advanced model?  You got a 5000 series with an education package?” I exclaimed.

“I know, I know, but I’m just sick of the dumb ones,” he said sucking on his cigarette,  “I didn’t realize that the education packages think so much, I just thought it just makes conversation and advice better.”  He explained, head bobbing low, “I didn’t realize that I actually had to put so much effort into them.”

I hate to say it man but that’s advanced material,” I responded, “I’ve never bought higher than a 3000 series, I like to keep things simple. Actually I’m happier with the 2000 series actually, they don’t analyze my behavior so much and it is much easier to persuade them to do what I want them to do, ” I trailed off realizing that my words weren’t really helping.

“Now I have to start all over,” Frank mumbled head in hands again. “Build the whole relationship from scratch, if only they didn’t cost so much money.”

“Well, just try being single for a while then,” I replied.

“No, no, I’ve tried being single before, it messes with my mind man,” he said with wide eyes, “suddenly everything in the world has a sexual connotation.  This one time I walked into a grocery store to return something and the cashier was talking to me in plain English but I didn’t get what she meant.”

“What was she saying?” I asked

“She said something like, ‘This is past the return DATE sir, we have to GO OUT to the warehouse and speak with my manager. Most likely she will approve it because we like to keep up good RELATIONS with our customers.  COME along.’ Then she had me follow her to the back and all I could focus on was her….”

“I hear ya, you don’t have to give anymore detail…” I interrupted while tapping him on the shoulder, “but hey, lets go grab a drink, take a load off.  I’ve had girlfriends blow up on me before too, it always sucks at first but, hey, it’s a learning experience, that’s why you try different models.  You’ll get it down…”

“yeah you’re right,” he responded as he got up to head off to the local pub with me.

While walking out of the pool area we saw smoke flowing out of a second floor apartment where a couple was arguing on the balcony.

Suddenly the man on the balcony yelled, TAKE COVER!!!!” instantly we jumped under the nearest table just in time to hear a loud BOOM BOOM BOOOOOM.  As the shards of plastic and metal wires rained over us, I said, “See, you’re not alone.”

Change in the Air

Change in the Air

I sat outside the Sydney Airport, scanning the rather empty parking lot for the shuttle to the city that seemed to have forgotten about me, when a old Australian man struck up a conversation with me.

“Got a light?” he asked,

“no, sorry, sir, but that man on his cell phone over there just finished smoking, he probably has one,” I replied while motioning in a direction off to my right.

The man got a light and returned to the bench where I sat.

“American or Canadian?”  He asked me while blowing his smoke the opposite direction of me.

“American,” I said as cheerfully as I could having just been deep in thought about how I just landed half way around the world alone, “I’ve never been to Australia before, I’m excited.”

The man looked around as if he too was in a brand new world, “yeah, change is in the air.”

At first I thought he was being sarcastic in a way that I just didn’t understand, but in that moment I realized he was really being contemplative, basing his words off some sort of wisdom that I had yet to acquire.

I looked around not feeling change being in the air because my arrival was the result of a natural progression of events for me, and said, “well, everything seems normal around here, like, I’m sure this is how this place normally operates.” My voice cracked midway as I spoke as the emotion of realizing that I had really flown here alone hit me again, it came in waves.

“But you’re here,” the man said, “that’s a pretty big change, and not just for you, I tell you change is in the air, I can feel it.”

Just then the man’s ride pulled up.  He put out his cigarette and a woman, who looked to be his daughter, helped him load his luggage into the car.

“You take care of yourself, and enjoy Oz,” he said to me with a grim as he got into the car.

“I will!, thank you!”I responded just before he closed the door and the car drove off.

I sat there for a few minutes thinking, “I have really done this.”

Miscommunication

Miscommunication

I wrote the below email titled “[insert work document here] – who is reviewing?” to the other members of my department this morning:

“Good Morning!

I’ve almost finished my review of [insert work document here]. Let me know whom I should give it to when I am finished.

Thanks!”

I instantly got a “reply to all” message from one of the managers saying that she doesn’t know who is going to review it but she will hold on to it in the meantime and also since I am almost done with it she has something else I can do.

My boss called me into the office a few minutes later (with some smoke coming out of her ears) to remind me that when I need more work to do, email only her first! She knows what is top priority. (She had told me to do this same thing last week, so she was annoyed because she had to do it again).

I explained that the email was in no way written to imply that I needed more work… my evidence is that fact that I had more work to do. I told her the tasks that were next on my list and even showed her where I was going to pick up again on a previous task I had to put on hold and that I wrote that email asking who I should pass my last project to. so simple and not worth the interrogation.

Once I finished explaining this to her, I politely asked if there was anything else she needed from me and she said “You’re going to make sure you ask me before you send an email like that the next time, aren’t you?”

With an extreme expression of confusion on my face I replied, “Emails…asking….who is…..reviewing certain documents when I am finished? Okay, no problem.”

She said, “No! emails requesting more work!”

I responded, “I didn’t write an email requesting more work, but I will ask you before I do next time. [Insert manager’s name] is busy and must have been hoping I might have time to help her out. If you open the email you can see I clearly wrote that I needed to know who to give the project to when I was finished, that’s all.”

She cut me off without rereading the email with a smart-ass, “I read the email, and you IMPLIED that you needed more work to do.”

Instead of starting all over again, I went into a explanation of how “I’m having a hard time because I am being as direct as possible when I communicate but I am constantly having to clarify that the words on the computer screen do not have other meanings. It is a simple miscommunication and I’m sorry if it was taken that way.”

Saying I was “almost finished” could also mean that I didn’t want someone to think I could hand it to them right away because I wasn’t done yet… or I want them to take note of how long it took me to do it…or anything…. but in reality, I just wanted to know who to give it to when I was done with it.

I feel like the Gods have cursed me to have the ability to say things clearly but few are able to believe that that is all I mean to say.

Or the boss is cursed to continuously think people are saying more than they really are.

Ultimately, before putting on their critic’s hat, it is the reader’s responsibility to make sure he or she understands the writer in order to avoid loosing what little lint of my respect happen to stick to their clothes as they passed by on their way to the kitchen.

Writing and a Female Prospective

Writing and a Female Prospective

I like to write about patterns in life and other things around me lately. I describe parallel events while making subtle references to the actual events that have inspired me, and of which, I can only guess if any bystander of the times can actually connect incidents to the specific references I cite; they might catch one, but not another, because more than one event may be referenced in patterns of which I write. These patterns are like small cycles, lasting from mere minutes in silence to miles of cruising the open road, that occur at different points of time in my life and are directly related to each other but only in form, because the content (i.e. plot, characters, setting, specific chronology of events, etc.) are different.

The best example is the chemically triggered female cycle. Hormones trigger emotional responses in this particular cycle, this connected with the innate drive of procreating, causes our minds (acting as functions of our body and issuing thought) to subtly tune in with the concept of the female cycle and thus, both men and women react to it. The physical action is what is too be focused on here because it is a by-product of the cycle and what others perceive consciously.

I noticed that there are different triggers in replace of hormones in other cycles of life. Other cycles use this programing and apply it to other issues that need to be – so to speak – completed. Maybe I think this way just because I am female. Perhaps it isn’t so for men. I’m suggesting/playing with the idea that maybe if men want to escape a life of social/emotional cycles (aside from events like the earth’s orbit and the changing of the seasons – which are, need I even type: unavoidable) they could simply remove female influence from their sphere, if only for a few minutes, to take a break from a dizzying existence… only to return, well-equipped to face the cycles again. Women, being completely unable to stop cycling, have no concept of what not cycling could possibly be and therefore must work out the dizziness cycling causes through cycling itself, achieving obviously far less of a break than men, but feeling just as refreshed.

Social cycles I am referring to can be as simple as hanging out with friends on a regular basis and as complex as fidgets.

I hope this makes sense, I won’t know until morning…