Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Scenes from the Forklift: Caffeine Don't Fail Me Now!

There's been a big shake-up in MSA One as of late. For a few months now, there has been an eerie calm over the place, not unlike the eye of a hurricane. We have been lulled into a false sense of security that is now threatening to break. Indeed, the tides of change have begun to erode the... Oh, enough already! On with the blog...

We used to work from 8 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday. Not so anymore. As of last yesterday, our hours have been changed. Now we work from 7 am to 5 pm Monday to Thursday, and from 7 am to 11:15 am on Friday.

Did you catch that? I said 7 am! Seven o’clock in the freakin’ morning! Sure, we have half of Friday to ourselves now, but come on! I’m not sure my blood even starts circulating before 7:30!

It’s only been two days of the new Torture Schedule, but you can already see it taking its toll. Gone is the spring in our step, only to be replaced with a shuffle that strangely resembles that of a zombie from the Micheal Jackson "Thriller" video. Computers are on, email clients and Inventory programs running as usual, but people are spending a lot more time staring blankly at them as they wait for their synapses to fire quick enough to enable comprehension. The coffee drinkers in the crowd (including yours truly, of course) have gone from having a relaxing morning cup o’ Joe to pounding three or four back like frat boys doing shooters in an effort to kick-start their brains.

You can see it on an individual level as well… For instance, Rockstar, who usually takes orders and rounds up lunch for a select few everyday, started wandering through MSA One grumbling that he was hungry and saying, "It’s gotta be almost lunchtime!"

It was 9:45.

And then there’s Jughead, one of the recent newbies to join our ranks. He’s normally your typical early twenties male… Doing the slow walk, cracking the odd joke here and there, and basically trying to project an air of "cool". Well! Get this guy up and into work before 7, and suddenly he’s like a 9-year old who’s had too much cola and is up way past his bedtime! Now he’s talking a mile a minute, and every second thing is a fart joke… And he thinks he’s funny! It’s quickly becoming obvious that somebody needs a nap…

Even the great Cuppojoe isn’t immune to the effects of this time-shift. No sir! I’m what the common man would refer to as "cranky". Now, I already have a somewhat low tolerance for stupidity as it is, but now that a dose of sleep deprivation has been added to the mix… Watch out! I am totally on the edge with the guys working under me! We are approaching some very important deadlines for commitments I have made to The Powers That Be, and I am constantly having to go back to double- and triple-check work that I thought was straight-forward. Naturally, this has me in a mood that has earned me a few names behind my back, most of them deservedly so. Still, the fact that I had to show a guy how to count to ten today has me shaking, and I don’t think it’s just the coffee this time!

Well, I guess I better cut the rant off there… After all, it is 6:30 in the evening. I should have been in bed a half-hour ago…
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