Wednesday, June 06, 2007


First of all I want to say thanks to everyone for all the wonderful birthday wishes. It was truly a nice and peaceful birthday. It was also a great excuse to get Tony to go to Alice and Friends without any complaints. Going out is one of the few times he actually gets to eat meat so a primarily vegan restaurant isn’t a huge draw. After our nice dinner we headed home to a bottle of wine, some strawberry cheesecake, and disc one of the final season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I got calls from wonderful happy people and didn’t have to do anything stressful after leaving the office. That’s what I call a good day.

Looking back at my last week at work as a 27 year old, I realized I learned many things. I wanted to share some of them.

Lessons I learned on my own:
-Sometimes the best you can do is not the same as the intended goals of the project but your bosses still like you and it is ok.

-Even if you are overworked and stressed it is important to take your full lunch break. If you don’t you will be overworked, stressed, and angry.

-Sometimes you have to close the door and not let anyone in even if they really want to talk.

-The first friends you made on a job are the ones that will understand you best, even if you don’t talk as much as you used to.

-When trying to work as a team with other departments to reach a common goal, it is your responsibility to make it happen, no one else cares. Or, if they do care, they will likely forget.

-As much as you want to kill them, students will always make you laugh

Lessons from students
-Arrogant is a positive term meaning that you are a nose to the grindstone no-nonsense worker that always gets the job done.

-You are supposed to get your birthday off work.

-“Exclusive communicationally” is a skill worth putting on your resume

-Sitting at your desk listening to your iPod blogsurfing with a full plate of food in front of you is not a signal that you don’t want to be disturbed

-When mad at a co-worker you should bite your tongue in the workplace and kick their ass after you clock out to avoid consequences.

-A long question on a test is not worth reading.

-I laugh like Ty from Clueless (maybe it’s been a long time), and kind of look like her too (huh? Wait isn’t she the one that’s a total mess, damn).

-When describing the jar method of time management, it is important to clarify that you are not talking about putting crack rocks in a jar.

-Rapport is probably a place where rap records get shipped from

And now for the songs.

1. I’ll do anything/ For my sweet sixteen/ And I’d do anything/ For little runaway child

2. Because mutiny on the bounty is what we’re all about/ I’m gonna board your ship and turn it on out. Rhymin and Stealin, The Beastie Boys. Identified by Ern

3. Though you may not drive/ A great big Cadillac/ Gangsta whitewalls/ TV antennas in the back. Be Thankful, not by Curtis Mayfield or Massive Attack (who is it??). Partly identified by Ern

4. Nothing to do to save his life/ Call his wife in/ Nothing to say but what a day/ How’s your boy been. Good Morning, Good Morning. The Beatles. Identified by Johnny Yen

5. It was December 24th on Hollis Ave in the dark/ When I seen a man chilling with his dog in the park/ I approached him very slowly with my heart full of fear/ Looked at his dog, oh my God, an ill reindeer. Christmas on Hollis, Run DMC. Identified by Monica


Jeff Roberts said...

"When describing the jar method of time management, it is important to clarify that you are not talking about putting crack rocks in a jar"

LOL - Even if this turns out to be a killer day I think I'll survive with that one in my pocket!

Monica said...

4 is the Run DMC X-mas rap. I don't know the name of it.

Dude, exclusive comunicationally? WTF. Please don't ever learn a lesson, especially from YOUR students, that involves made up words that make no sense. hilarious. BTW, I have no clue what the jar method of ANYTHING is.

Johnny Yen said...

#4 is "Good Morning, Good Morning" from the now-40-year-old Sgt Pepper album!

I recognize #3 from the seventies, but can't remember who did it.

Johnny Yen said...

And Happy Belated Birthday!

kim said...

Happy Birthday Girl. Awesome.

You are absolutely correct in taking your full lunch break. No one cares if you work through your lunch. I've learned the hardway!

So wise, so young. Gather ye rosebuds while ye may!

Danielle said...

I am so glad to hear you had a good birthday. The only lesson I can say I've really gotten after 31 years is that I control my reaction to another 's action. Simple but took a while.

Be well, sweets

Mom said...

Corollaries to the lesson on taking the full lunch break:

1. If you take your lunch break at your desk, people will come by and bother you because they think you're working.

2. Eating a modest lunch out at a sit-down restaurant with friends -- even if you do it every weekday -- is cheaper than therapy.

I knew I recognized song #3, but didn't know what it was called until I looked it up (cheating!). So I'll leave it for Dad (aka the "anonymous" one) to name... (And Johnny beat me to #4.)

Great post!

Monica said...

obviously i meant 5 and not 4

Natalie said...

Jeff- Yeah, that was a special moment.

Monica- I really enjoyed telling that poor child (who also made the "arrogant" comment) that it was better to use very plain words correctly than more "advanced" ones incorrectly. At least he had the sense to be embarrassed. Yes, obviously.

Johnny- Thanks, I love the Sgt. Pepper album so much!

Kim- No one even notices if you work through your lunch. It's like you have to tell everyone you are doing it and then they will tell you to take a break anyway.

Danielle- Yeah that can be a hard one. We spent a lot of time on it in class this past week.

Mom- I know but I so prefer to eat at my desk by myself with my computer than in the lunchroom where I have to join in conversation. Yuck!

Evil Spock said...

That Johnny Yen is an incorrigible gentleman.

Happy belated birthday, and thanks for coming by! Oh, and Evil Spock always believes in lunch breaks. The longer the better too.

Would you like to do a link exchange madame?

Mom said...

Natalie - I would never advocate eating in the lunchroom. I have always avoided the lunchroom, ever since avoidance became possible (high school, for me). I say, get out of the office, out of the building. If it's nice, sit in the park if you like. (Obviously there are times when "at the desk" is the location of choice. I choose it a lot, even in my "home office". But out with a select companion or two is almost always a good thing, IMO.)

Mom said...

And what is this "jar method"? Many are curious...

Travis said...

Happy Birthday.

I think everyone should get their birthday off work, and not just when it falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday!!

Happy Peace Globe Day!

Johnny Yen said...

I worked both of my jobs on my birthday this year-- it fell on a Thursday, my regular shift at the restaurant. Since I was turning 46, a lot closer to 50 than I thought I'd ever get to, I welcomed the distraction.

RastaManErn said...

n°2 is the Beasties - Rhymin' and Stealin'

n°3 is Be Thankful... by Curtis, baby! I just watched Superfly last night, too.

RastaManErn said...

...then again, it could be the Massive Attack version. =P

it's the little things... said...

Ooops! I missed your bday! Sorry and I hope it was wonderful. I didn't know you were a Gemini too!

Natalie said...

Evil Spock- Sounds fine to me. I also enjoy a long lunch break when possible.

Mom- If I spent more time at my desk with the door closed I probably wouldn’t be bothered as much but it gets a little hot. I do enjoy walking up to eat with Monica but haven’t had time the past few weeks . The jar method will be described in the next post.

Travis- It would be so nice if that were true.

Johnny Yen- To me a birthday is essentially just another day but you happen to get presents and are officially older. Working is sometimes part of the just another day thing. I am in awe of those who work two jobs.

Ern- It is neither. I don’t have the Massive Attack version and while this song is often attributed to Curtis it isn’t him. Superfly is awesome.

Little Things- No problem! Thanks for the well wishes. Gemini’s are pretty cool with their non-decision making ways.

Blondie said...

I am going to use all of your work advice at my job tomorrow. AWESOME!