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My stupid life

Having a Maker's responsibilities on a Manager's schedule

This is a great summary of the Problem with Meetings.

When you're operating on the maker's schedule, meetings are a disaster. A single meeting can blow a whole afternoon, by breaking it into two pieces each too small to do anything hard in.
I find one meeting can sometimes affect a whole day. A meeting commonly blows at least half a day, by breaking up a morning or afternoon. But in addition there's sometimes a cascading effect. If I know the afternoon is going to be broken up, I'm slightly less likely to start something ambitious in the morning. I know this may sound oversensitive, but if you're a maker, think of your own case. Don't your spirits rise at the thought of having an entire day free to work, with no appointments at all? Well, that means your spirits are correspondingly depressed when you don't. And ambitious projects are by definition close to the limits of your capacity. A small decrease in morale is enough to kill them off.

By no means do i consider myself to be a Maker of anything significant, but i am responsible for "making things" (writing documentation for consumption by developers, specifically). And yet i'm high enough up on the org chart that i'm needed in "Manager" meetings. Lots of them. Which pretty much makes making things impossible. Sure, if you look at my calendar you might find enough time, usually in half hour intervals, that are technically sufficient for me to complete my "alone time" tasks. But as the quoted piece says, there's no way to write a document that should take four hours in eight half hour increments. Or at least, there's no way to write it well. Oh, i'll get it done. But it'll be mundane and uninspired and lacking in any of the Excellence that my company's Core Values statement says is so important. Rushing to get stuff done in tiny chunks sure makes it hard to give a crap.

My favorite is when a meeting ends early (a rarity) and the meeting organizer says, "Well, looks like i'm 'giving back' 15 minutes!". Sure. But i'm using those 15 minutes to stare sullenly at my RSS feed.

Anyway, i guess it's nice to see i'm not alone.

By fnord12 | June 21, 2012, 4:50 PM | My stupid life | Comments (0)| Link

Um...We Were Hungry

If you order takeout, and they don't give you your food in a box plus a bag for whatever wouldn't fit in the box, then you did something wrong.

fnord12 tried to conceal our shame by saying we were inviting people over.  ha!  like we'd share.

If you look carefully, you'll see the corner of a cupcake to the right of the bag. We bought that at a vegan-friendly bakery while waiting for our food to be prepared. Cause the 4 slices of cake we ordered with the rest of our food at the restaurant was clearly not enough dessert.

By min | June 10, 2012, 12:34 AM | My stupid life | Comments (2)| Link

I've never seen one land, but i always look up to make sure when i'm passing through

Very rarely, around noon, i escape my corporate masters and get outside to clear my head. Sometimes i even get to eat food. I am told by people who don't have co-workers on the west coast that like to have meetings that start 'first thing in the morning' and run until noon their time that this is called a "lunch break".

In our old building, there used to be a nice quiet street you could walk along, but since we've moved, i basically walk along a string of connected office building parking lots. This is weird and sad, but i'm not the only one who does it. It's either that or walking along the highway.

But walking in the parking lot is not without its own perils. Hence this:

Another sign points down and says 'Beware of Moguera'

No idea why there's a helicopter landing pad in the parking lot for a building that has software companies, ad agencies, lawyers, and a psychologist's office, but i'll admit there have been times when, if there was a helicopter waiting for me outside, i'd probably have fled my office, Saigon-evacuation style. Actually, by "there have been times" i mean "always".

I appreciate the arrow, helpfully pointing up. They come from thataway.

By fnord12 | June 8, 2012, 12:12 PM | My stupid life | Comments (0)| Link

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