"Some calls it madness...I calls it HiDeeHo." - Cab Calloway
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Friday, December 13, 2002


Especially the ones that go off right after you've sat down, and spray your ass. Dont'cha just hate that?

I have to stop taking these online quizzes.


Leann at Indigoblur found this page of the infamous Calvin and Hobbes Snowman series.


I love making up new words. Dysergonomy = lit. Naming/study of improper/bad work. Anergology = Discussion/study of the absence of work.

Okay, the story today is this - I got up this morning fully intending to try and work today, to persist in the face of technical difficulties, to try and throw a few hundred more lines onto my count for the pay period (ends on Sunday).

It is, at this moment, 9:18 a.m. I have tried, at last count, 10 times to log into the Meditech system. It is not responding. I dial in, I get the disclaimer screen, I get the login screen, and there it sits. No cursor, no blink, the window sits there passive and unresponsive. Dum de dum.

Now, I am no dummy. I know my way around the technical issues with Meditech. I have three different phone numbers, two modems and two logins with which to try and get a successful connection. In the last week, I've changed out from a 33.6K to a 56K modem, tried all three dial-up numbers, and both logins in all possible combinations. THAT took a significant amount of time and was the source of a good 2/3 of my frustration.

The remaining 1/3 of my frustration comes with the voice part of the work. I have this little box with buttons on it that dials into the hospital's dictation system. The problem is, and they KNEW this when they sent it to me, it's broken. The most important button on the flarking thing, the login button, works sporadically. The number you use to find out the voice ID number is right next to the "hang up" button and sometimes they cross over onto each other's function. I told them about this as soon as I realized the box didn't work, and what they said was, "That's the only one we have left. We'll have to order you another one." I said, "Okay, how long will that take?" "Oh, not too long. A couple of days." I never got one. I've had to use the same broken box since the beginning of November. I call and they say, "Oh, yes, we ordered that, it hasn't come, etc, etc."

So you know what? Again I say, screw them. I shall put them behind me, but at such a distance that they shall no longer be able to bugger me senseless.

(Aside to RRN, you know who you are, I TOLD you that you didn't want to work for these people. You're better off how you are, believe me.)

Thursday, December 12, 2002


This is me according to My Virtual Model:

except my eyes are brown, my hair is longer, I have freckles and I'm not quite THAT shiny

If it gives you an X-box, it's because their server is wonky, nought to do with me at all...


Okay. So. I tendered my resignation to MedQuist and got a perfunctory response. That's about what I expected. Now, the question on my mind is, why should I continue trying to be productive at all? I gave myself an ultimatum this morning; the very first problem I run into, I'm off. I'm not going to sit here and struggle with their stupid system and drive myself nuts over it anymore. To be totally honest, I don't even really NEED the money I wouldn't be making. I wouldn't be making it anyway. My highest production day last week topped just over 300 lines. That's a smidge over $25, folks. Pre-tax, even. I sat and put in honest effort and wrestled with this stupid computer for eight hours and earned $25. That's $3.13 an hour for the time I put in. When was the last time minimum wage was even that low? If I'm going to be paid like a migrant farm worker or a sweatshop laborer, I at least want the exercise and fresh air the farm workers get, or the evidence that I'm actually MAKING something tangible like the sweatshoppers.

Whine, bitch, moan, repeat.

When I dialed in this morning, the first thing I got was the three tones of the phone company saying "boo-bee-BOO...your call did not go through. Would you please try your call again." Okay, I pushed the log-in button again. Same thing. I tried yet ONCE again, and finally managed to get through.

The first report I get is 13 minutes long and is being spoken by someone who, pardon the expression, sounds just off the boat. Grrrr.

UPDATE: At 12:50 CST, I am STILL working on this report, and have 2 minutes and 39 seconds to go. Granted, I've been doing laundry and dishes and smooching my Pooka, as well as getting lunch for my daughter...ah, the joy of slack.

Wednesday, December 11, 2002


I gave MedQuist my notice this morning. Why? I was formally hired by Amphion this morning.

They're local. They have affordable insurance and 11 days of PTO a year. They use a word processing platform I know inside and out. Guaranteed work. Paid downtime. A high hourly "safety-net" rate. High line rate. People I know and used to work with very well. Sigh.

Glory be. Glory be unto Mata Lakshmi, goddess of prosperity.

Tuesday, December 10, 2002


Well. It's pay day today. I knew I'd be taking a hefty pay cut. But a full 50%? Jumpin' Jesus on a pogo stick! How many of you could survive with a 50% pay cut? Raise your hands. No? No one? Man, that's harsh. I'm about $500 short of where I usually am at this time of the month, but still quite solvent, for now anyway.

It's going to be a bit painful, but I'm in survival mode. I called to have my standard cable taken off (saves $30 a month), the extra converter (another $5.60), and the pet rent ($20 a month) because I no longer have a pet. I'm in necessity food mode (what's in the cabinet and fridge and freezer already, in very desperate times I've lived on mom's leftovers), the homemade Christmas/birthday presents, and thanking my good judgement I paid off my car 3-1/2 years ahead of schedule. I also have heat included in rent, so I can crank that puppy up as far as it'll go. Not that I'd do that to my poor temperate climate humidity-loving plants (aloe and kalanchoe excluded) and self, but I could if I had to. I HAVE to keep Roadrunner for my next job (Amphion, Amphion, chanting it like it's a key to Nirvana) or otherwise that'd be another $50 saved. I will live up to my favorite acronym...K.I.S.S. and do just that. I will kiss (free entertainment!) AND keep it simple, stupid.

I always keep my credit cards under $300 a month (that's food and gas only, with very very occasional $15-at-a-time indulgence), so no problem there. I would SO love to have new clothes, but I don't think I NEED them per se, so that's a big no (clean your closets, dummy)...Mo has clothes that can last her for a while longer, but she's growing like a weed...may need to enlist grandma and grandpa's help in clothing the kid...

I actually called up the unemployment office and started a claim, too. It's not fraudulent. No. The work has dwindled to such a small amount that any other company would have laid me off. Not so with MQ. They've been known to call up people that haven't worked for them in six months and ask if they can do a shift. They're a little lax in their recordkeeping. What I said before about not being able to collect unemployment may or may not be true. We'll see. It'd be more than I was paid for these last two weeks.

Amphion, Amphion, Amphion...

Monday, December 09, 2002


Take the Dessert Quiz

I like this one.


...but for now, those tangerines will *just* have to do!

What's your sexual perversion?

Created by ptocheia

This quiz was brought to me courtesy of a whipsmartgirl.


Overheard on passing by Morgan's bedroom on a few occasions: Singing along with They Might Be Giants, their brand new record for 1990, Flood...

"...not to put a pineapple on it...say I'm the only bee in your bonnet"

"I lost my lucky ball of tape, now she's 40 years gone"

"Even old New York was once New Hamster Town"

She gets all the words right in "Particle Man."

She has a rock with string wound around it. Seriously. She made it herself.

We have her off to a good start.


Well, looky who has her comments back. Thank you, HaloScan! Your tag at the bottom of my page is tiny, but it's there. I didn't even futz with the alt tag.


More teeth-gnashing frustration from work:

1. I'm having a NEW problem. The help desk for the hospital's record system doesn't have a toll-free number. I have four minutes left on my calling card and have no long-distance carrier. I'm in Mukwonago, WI; they're in El Paso, TX.
2. I have a lost voice report that won't come back to me. The office can reassign me the voice job, but I get someone on the phone who doesn't seem too cooperative and repeated the wrong number back to me every time I asked if they had it. "521426? 521642? 561421?" NO!!! 521462!!!!! Dammit! I didn't say that, but still...
3. I did as I was instructed and saved every minute or so while I was in doing this report (I shouldn't have to do this, no one else seems to have this problem), and now there is a report floating around in the system half-done that I can't finish, and I can't call anyone about it. The doc will pull it up to review and sign it, notice it's only half done and it's my ass. Well.

It's not like I did this on purpose, you know.

PLEASE tell me this awful nightmare of a job is almost over.


Before this link reared its tousled head on this site. I mean, after all, it's been like, what, 5-1/2 months? Geez.

I stole the bar of hieroglyphs at the top of my site from their site. Do you think they'll mind?

Sunday, December 08, 2002


Josh has me reading the Planetary series by Warren Ellis and John Cassaday.

There will be pop quizzes and I'll be writing a paper once I finish this and The Authority.

Who says love won't broaden your horizons? Here I was isolated in my Gaiman-Vasquez-land, not thinking too much about superheroes...and then Josh comes along and opens up a new avenue for me.


Gods and Goddesses, why does the weekend have to be so short? Does anyone else get that listless, hopeless, dreary feeling on Sunday evenings? I remember this from my midwinter school days. There is a whole 'nother work week facing you and the 40 hours will DRAAAAAAG by. I get paid on Tuesday which should be more of a laugh than even for you horribly underpaid retail or food service workers. We will see if I made even minimum wage, or less. Production workers are not subject to the minimum wage laws, and MQ doesn't have a safety-net hourly rate, of course.

Whine, bitch, moan, repeat.


This past Friday's Firefly was particularly good, I thought. Intrigue, violence, Zoe kicking ass, Inara letting her freak flag fly high, Kaylee losing her shit in a gunfight and River taking over, Mal and Wash bantering between bouts of electrocution torture, Niska coming back to haunt them...all very cool.

I also finally got to see the musical episode of Buffy. Heehee. I would have never guessed Spike got the power ballad. That dancing demon is like the evil offspring of some hellbeast-lady and Ben Vereen.

I digress. Back to your regularly scheduled Sunday evening mope.


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