The Daily EO: July 10th 2013

I had a meeting with the president of our organization today because he wanted to get an update on my department.  I invited my boss – who had just returned from a 2 week tropical vacation – to join us so she could get the same update.

I’ll admit, I’ve been a bit stressed lately, not getting enough exercise, nor eating right, or getting outside.  Not sleeping enough, and frankly not looking my best.  While the president talked to us, he looked back and forth.  And eventually laughed and said “it’s funny – she’s so golden, you are well. . . not.  You need to get outside!”


Pasty, I guess.

July 10th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:   60 SPF sunscreen on my face on the Canada Day weekend did me no favours.


The Daily EO: June 26th, 2013

I have a talent for being cutting.  I wanted to be cutting much more when I was younger – I thought it was a sign of toughness and strength.  I don’t really like myself now when I hurt someone through condescension or dismissal or outright questioning of their competency.  I find that for the most part, I don’t want to be that and tend to overcome usually.  But at my worst, I am mean.  There are certain situations and personalities that bring out the worst in me.  If I feel that my time is being deliberately wasted or that someone is not respecting what I have done/who I am.  Or if you are meek or unknowingly dumb.   And other times, I can’t put my finger on it.

There is a new team member at work that I can’t seem to find a rhythm with.  She seems to be technically capable, friendly, inquires about my weekend, listens to what I say, follows up and closes issues and for some reason makes me absolutely grit my teeth in every interaction I have with her.

I was mean to her today.  I left soon afterwards and spent my entire drive home trying to understand what it was.  What is my problem?  Why am I being mean?

June 26th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Not feeling too proud of myself today.

The Daily EO: June 16th, 2013

After cancelling my nail appointment last Saturday to help my grandmother get to the hospital, I was looking a little ragged.  I did seriously consider if I could get my nails done and then head to her place to decide what to do.  But I was a good granddaughter.  So, I rescheduled my appointment for today.

What is it with us humans?  Why can we not stop picking at things hanging out there, leave things along, no we have to keep picking and proding and poking at stuff until our hems are hanging , mosquito bites are bleeding and your nails are all ragged.

I figured I needed a little down time after another ridiculous week.  While sat waiting for my appointment, I got an email telling me that the production floor sewer had backed up and the place was flooded.  Tell me what they makes you think?  Well, it made me think of the place full of dirty filthy water as team members sloshed through in knee high boots with little pieces of poop floating by.   Facilities is not my responsibility, no, but I work there, and honestly all I could think is “oh, god, I’m going to have to reschedule all the lines again.”

So, while I sat having my nails done, I was wondering about poop.  How much, where was it, what is happening, etc.  This made my hour of relaxation a little less relaxing.

The nail salon I go to is run by a person of Asian descent and most of her employees are also.  For many of whom, English is a second language.  So other languages swirl around.  Sometimes this can make for difficult small talk.  So can poop distraction.

I was pulled out of my poop thoughts by the technician saying:

“You the way?”


“YOU the Way?”  (accompanied by a shaking of the front of her shirt)

Um.  . . .”I’m sorry, Pardon me?”

“The Way!  Lose the Way?”

Oh!  “Did I lose weight!?”  Well, I look sunken, sallow, stressed, and rather terrible I thought, but no, I didn’t lose weight.  Maybe my head shrunk.

“You look good.”

“Well . . . um. . . .thanks.  No, I don’t think so.  But thanks.”

That was unexpected.


June 16th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  I lost weight apparently (or started dressing better), and the reports of a flood were sensationalized.   No poop, no dirty water.  Just a little clean water up a couple of drains.

The Daily EO: June 13th, 2013

I’m finally back.  And a difficult time it has been.  Year End, then inventory, and demand explosions at work and my grandma being admitted to the hospital in my personal life.  I haven’t been sleeping much, simply spending hours sitting in the hospital listening to detailed explanations of lunch or working late into the night trying to cram 10,000 units in a shift that only has the capacity to run 7,000 units.  Surely, if everyone just skipped lunch and worked a little faster.. . .

Grandma is out of the hospital – and all chipper and relaxed after a week of people taking care of her –  and I actually decided that the cramming could stop for tonight.

I drove home today and had little recollection of driving on the highway to get this far.  I thought this might be dangerous and vowed to myself that an early night was in order.  As I turned the corner off McGill onto Powell, there was a Kangaroo standing on the corner.   I considered how hungry I was, and thought perhaps that it was time for me to take in some food, get some sleep, and try to relax.   Perhaps then I will stop seeing foreign animals on the street.

This kangaroo was standing there with a man who was pushing a baby carriage.  And it didn’t seem particularly pouchy or jumpy.  But there she was – standing there in mid June – hanging out on the street corner wearing a thick kangaroo costume like it was a normal thing to do.  Whatever works.

June 13th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:   Just because you see an Australia Marsupial doesn’t mean you need to better manage your stress.  But it could.


A Materials Manager’s Final Exam

It’s annual physical inventory (just after fiscal year-end), and I have time for work, sleep, eat and laying on my back watching reruns of Modern Family trying not to drool on the couch.  Not much else (and sometimes not even those).

So I am not up to date right now – and won’t be for another week.  Forgive me – my husband has.

I’ll be back consistently at the end of next week!

The Daily EO: May 13, 2013

I have never really been a plant lover.  Plants are mysterious, dirty and annoying to me.  Don’t get me wrong, I get sucked in grocery store forced blooms as much as the next person.  And I will buy.  And proceed to either smother with love or neglect to death.  My mother-in-law used to bring me plants all the time.  She figured out – or I guess will know for sure now – that I kill plants.  I used to try to replace the plant that I killed before she came to visit, but then she – being a plant person – seemed to recognize that this was a new version.   I guess they aren’t all the same.

I tend to get gifts of food from her now.

For Easter, she sent us an Easter lily, of whose care was firmly within Emile’s hands.  I just looked at it – from afar mind – and enjoyed, but all care was in his hands.  Near the end of its life, Emile put it outside on our balcony to get it some fresh air and sunlight.  It was promptly eaten by a pigeon.

Now that is not something you see every day.  Then Emile “taught it a lesson” with a squirt bottle again.

Anyways, I also don’t like plants because they get dusty, leave water/dirt marks and I don’t have the patience for cleaning up.  I especially hate fake plants and flowers because as much as they don’t require care – that is exactly the problem.  They are left to get dusty and dirty and to fade in the sun while nobody pays any attention.   And they don’t even provide oxygen for us non-plants.  Horrible.

Now that I am comfortable at work – yet can still claim that I am “new” kinda, I just do things.  Like take the credenza out of the boardroom so you can actually get around the conference table, or throw things out that we don’t need.  And recently I decided the faded, dusty and spider infested fake plants (I’m sure) in our lobby needed to mysteriously disappear.  And they did.

Late one night they vanished into a holding area to see if anyone needed them.  Ahem.  Nobody needed them, but people have strange attachments to strange things.

A couple of days passed and otherwise than some comments of “Hey, it’s brighter in here” nobody really noticed.   So, into the dumpster they went.

Until the large team meeting when the president recognized the missing “plants” and said he’d solved the mystery of where they had disappeared to.   And then he turned to blame my boss.

What did I do?  Step up and say “I cannot tell a lie.  It was me.”?   Well, no.   I made no eye contact, I just looked surprised, turned my head towards the missing plant section like everyone else and blended into the crowd.  “That’s so weird.  I wonder what happened to them?!?”

May 13, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  The president and team clapped about the missing plants.   Phew. . .could have been a career limiting move there. . . where is my integrity?

Plastic Plant free. . . and we all feel better.

The Daily EO: March 26th, 2013

Is there anyone out there who uses MicroSoft Exchange as their work email software? You know what I love about it? The meeting booking functionality – you can choose who you want to come and look at their calendar and book it. And it syncs with my phone. As long as I don’t lose my phone, life is well scheduled.

But the best part of the meeting booking is the boardroom booking. You just add the boardroom based on the availability and you’ve got yourself a place to meet!

Send and then you sit back and wait for responses – hoping your meeting topic and timing is of interest and works for everyone. But the boardroom will respond instantly telling you it is ready to go!

March 26th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary: The boardroom always thinks your topic and schedule is a great idea. Instant feedback.

The Daily EO: February 28th, 2013

There is a point at which during every month of February, I realize that 15th of February (which happened to be a Friday this year), will fall on the exact same day in March.  And every four years I am slightly disappointed that it is not true.

I have a bizarre sense of pattern recognition and when things deviate from those patterns.  I don’t live my life in repetitive patterns (there is no “it’s Friday, so we have to eat Fish” in my house – for many reasons), but it gives me a schema to categorize the world and deal with it’s constant chaos.

Analogies and strange comparisons work for me.  It’s the ease of pattern recognition – and the deviations – that make me a good Materials Manager.  It’s data, data and more data when analyzing inventory, demand, orders, etc and being able to find the pattern within chaos.  And seeing when you have a problem – the pattern goes out of whack – is the most important.  I can see it before most and have a plan ready.   My desk is completely cluttered and my brain pings back and forth, but there is a pattern in that for me.

February 28th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Find your strengths, and work with them.  They may be bizarre, but somewhere out there you’ll find something that you can do better than most.

The Daily EO: February 25, 2013

You know those weeks where you sit at the beginning of it and wonder how you are going to get everything done.  This was such a week.  Which is why I am telling you about it at the very end of it, breaking my own rule of trying to write within 24 hours.

It wasn’t necessarily the number of things (though there are quite a few), it is a huge project that is due on March 1st at noon.   It feels huge, but it probably the same size as term paper and everyone knows you never do those things ahead.   Just exactly when you need to.  Just in Time.

February 25th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  The beginning of an insurmountable week – that I know now from age and experience  I will get everything done.