11/03/04: back in the saddle

Well, after an all-too-long (but for the most part, fun) hiatus, I am finally part of Working America again.

It feels good.

It feels good knowing I'll have a paycheck soon, and it feels good contributing to a group effort.

Considering I started working from home in April and was then laid off in June, I haven't really felt like part of a company/group for over half a year. Perhaps that's why doing The Wall felt so good; I was part of a collective when I'd been flying solo for so long. During my stint in San Francisco, I had zero human interaction other than hanging with John (which rocked, don't get me wrong), and since my return I've been in a vacuum since all my pals are involved with BatBoy. I can't believe I'm typing this, but it feels really good to be around people again.

Just since Monday, I feel like I've got my mojo back. I feel effective and useful. People call me into meetings to bounce ideas off of me because my opinion and experience is valued. My pace has quickened ten-fold; my tolerance for slack is waning. I like the schedule and structure, I like the faith people have in me, I like the responsibility and I like my boss. I like my comfy chair. I like being asked questions, and people genuinely care about my answers. People are present and in the moment and so am I; there is eye contact and open body language. I feel smart. People are making sure I am kept happy. I feel like I contribute. I like being able to cross things off my to-do list and feeling like I've accomplished stuff at the end of the day.

I realize that because I've been feeling so uninspired from being out of a job that I've been very accepting and forgiving of crap; but even in the last two days I just don't have time for excuses. I've got a life to lead Cha-cha and lost time to make up for, so either put on your running shoes or go be a loser somewhere else; I don't have time for half-assed. Woooo!

I've been to sleep before 11:30 each night and wake up ready to go (loving my new bed, by the way). I've been eating really well and I even (gasp!) got myself back to the gym! Granted, by the time I got home I definitely needed to decompress a bit, but the delta between blah-uninspired me and ass-whoopin' me is pretty staggering. I'm hoping I can keep up the pace. Of course, who knows how I'll feel once I get put out at the client site: I meet the client this Tuesday, so my whole attitude could change... or it could get more fired up. We'll see.

Anyhoo... The building in which I work is too small for the amount of people it needs to hold, so they've thrown cubes into old conference rooms and break rooms so people have a place to sit. My temporary cube is in their Managed Services Solutions Center, which is a NASA-like control room with huge flat panel screens on the walls with network monitoring apps up and refreshing every few seconds. Alarms ding, pagers go off and people are geniunely on their toes. My favorite part about sitting in here is that one of the flat screen monitors features a huge projection of the current radar images for the Mid-Atlantic states, so weather-dork Jill can keep an eye on things. Ranh!

In other news... I skipped auditions for Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat this weekend. On one hand I wanted to audition, but I took a look at my priorities, and I think it's more important that I concentrate on my job, my head, my health and the boy out west. I've got The Wall in December, I've got choir, I wanna keep working on stuff with Joe and Matt, and Sam asked me to contribute to his 4-track compilation, so that oughtta satisfy my musical itch for a little while without tapping me dry.

Last but not least, I'm not talking about the election (other than I watched the results and part of The Daily Show over at Joe's last night). Far more wise people have much more eloquent and well-thought-out opinions prominently displayed, and I don't think I can add to the conversation.   :-)