Saturday, May 15, 2010

Non-stop shopping

Today, I found myself shopping. This whole week or two has been a bit of a shopping spree. I suppose the desire to shop or make a monumental purchase started when I decided to sell my condo. That decision is now rescinded. After I decided not to sell (too much hassle and one good neighbor helped me stay), I thought about buying a car. An actual new car! Then that idea faded.

Finally, almost on a whim, last week I bought myself a $300 netbook and another knitting book. (I'm using the netbook right now. It's nifty and completely unnecessary.)

Today, I had some errands to run in the suburbs. I stopped at a strip mall with some small restaurants that I thought might be good eating. It was an interesting mix: Peruvian, Chinese, Indian and Persian. There was also a Persian mini-mart and a Persian bakery. I got some Persian nougat and cookies. (It sort of reminded me of Turkey, which I guess makes sense. I saw a brand of cookies in the mini mart that I remember buying in Turkey.)

I spotted a Michael's craft store. I stopped in and bought a scrapbook/ photo album and just-in-case craft stuff for the kids I read to (glitter glue sticks, mini pom-poms). I walked back to the car...but before I got out of there I saw a Best Buy. Just this morning, my relatively new coffee grinder failed yet again--it's rather temperamental. In a fit of pique, I threw it away. I bought a new coffee grinder (and gum and mosquito repellent) at Best Buy.

I was actually trying to go to Trader Joe's so I got in the van again and drove there. I entered through the back parking lot, something I've never done before, and I realized there was a huge computer (Microtec?) store there. I went to the computer store and bought a case for the netbook, a mouse, and memory stick. Then I did a mini-shop at TJ's.

Maybe this will serve as the retail therapy I so clearly need. Can I blame my horrible boss for this? She is driving me crazy and making me dread going to work. She is asking me to spend my time on tasks that NO ONE can understand the utility of. No one. Not my old boss, not my co-workers, not my friends down the hall, not my mother. What she wants me to do is so ridiculous that even a simple explanation of the task leaves the listener perplexed. The problem is that I don't say no. I mean, maybe that's the problem. Maybe saying no would be a solution. I just...I try to do what my boss asks me. I work hard and want to do a good job. I complain but I don't say no. That's why one of my work friends says I'm too nice. I'm not too nice but I might be too accommodating.

It was suggested to me that I clear this "saying no" strategy with my old boss. Not to ask his permission exactly, but to see what he thinks. How bad it is it to need approval?

I have to say, though, that this situation is bad enough that I'm worried about having a physical reaction. When I'm deeply unhappy, I get ill. It happened when I was in the third grade and my teacher tormented me. This situation feels oddly similar (though, to be fair, my new boss is not nearly as horrible as Mrs. Tarver).

The other day, after I completed the ridiculous task--my third try and it still wasn't completely to her satisfaction, though she did tell me to stop--she said, "So, do you see why I asked you to do that? Did you learn something?"

I did learn something--that the task wasn't very helpful. I said, "Well not really.  And, to be honest, it felt like a punishment."

She had an appropriately shocked look on her face and tried to explain why it was so important that I spent many hours creating a detailed budget justification/ staff loading chart for a project where the budget (on the government side) has been set for a very long time. SIGH.

I'm having a nice, relaxed, stress free weekend. Right? Right.

Grateful for: a very free weekend.


  1. Two words: new job! Does she know that you were a rival for her position? Maybe she's trying to take you down a notch or two? She sounds truly awful and I feel for you.

  2. Well, no, I don't want a new job. I like my job, I don't like my boss. I hope, I have some faith, that eventually this is going to change--either she will leave or she will leave me alone or I will learn how to deal with her.

    I do think she knows I applied for the job, but I don't think she's trying to take me down a notch. Her ineptness extends to the entire staff. Sigh.

  3. I sure miss Michael's! You can completely escape the world there. I was just blogging about how important a little bit of retail therapy is over the weekend--great minds. Your boss sounds like she could justify the purchase of just about anything. Sorry she's so difficult.


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