Tuesday, December 11, 2007


I guess things are better now...the evidence of the weekend's debacle has been swept away, and life is pretty much back to normal. Now I'm pissy about my job and not my screwed up weekend anymore.

My coworker's sister died Friday night. The coworker's wife called the lab and told him, and he pretty much fell apart, as you can imagine. He spun his wheels for a little while, trying to get back on track and concentrate on his work, but he couldn't do it. Eventually he took off his lab coat and said, "I have to go home."

I felt so bad for him. He'd been trying to get vacation time to go see her for the last week and we have a "no vacation between Thanksgiving and New Year" policy, so our boss wouldn't let him go. The irony is he couldn't gt time off to see her when she was alive, but that now that she's dead he can get bereavement leave to visit her body. Small consolation.

So anyway...he was working blood bank and I was in hematology. He finally got up and left, but he was too upset to tell me where he was at, and so I tried to wade in and make sense of the mountain of half-finished work on his bench. I sorted through his notes while I struggled to stay on top of my own stuff. Some of it I successfully dealt with. Some, not so successfully. I failed miserably at some parts, but at least not at the parts that were life or death. But I still got the "you're a moron" e-mail from my boss last night.

I replied with an e-mail telling him I may indeed be a moron, but at least I'm the kind of moron who tries to work two departments when her coworker has a family emergency and walks out in the middle of his shift.

I'll be curious to see his reply.

But really, it just drives home the point that no good deed goes unpunished. Had I left the coworker's mess stacked up in blood bank until the night shift blood banker arrived and/or the E.R. and O.R. docs started freaking out, I would have been off the hook.

I'm pretty sure that's how people learn to hunker down at their jobs and cover their own asses.

Like they say:

There's no "I" in team, but there is an I in "I can't believe I got fucked over for trying to help the team."

It's been a rough couple of days.



I wonder how someone lives with themselves when they know that they prevented someone from seeing a family member for the last time before they died? This is the stuff about life that just makes me feel like people are just piss ants.

A boss once told me a job well done is its' own reward. I said, no, I come to work for the money, if it weren't for the money I would stay the fuck home.

Kwach said...

lol, Cedar ... I'm with ya. I do not show up at my job for the fulfillment. If I wanted fulfillment I'd lay around in bed with Ev all day.

This is the third such episode at Ev's job. One of the maintenance men was telling her that the same thing happened to him when his mother was dying in St. Louis. He told them he needed to take the weekend off and they told him if he did they'd fire him. She died that weekend. He milked his bereavement leave until they threatened to fire him again.

The third, and most awful, example involved one of her co-workers who was pregnant with twins. She was pre-eclamptic, spotting, having a lot of pain, and the constant running up and down to draw blood was endangering the babies, so her doctor told her she had to either take time off or be assigned to a desk job. They told her they don't have desk jobs and they don't accommodate pregnancy. One of her supervisors called her a "lazy fat-ass" or words to that effect. Finally, she went into early labor and gave birth to preemies ... and both babies died. She never did come back to work there.

You'd think all that guilt would haunt them enough to stop doing people this way, wouldn't you?

Anonymous said...

There's no way to express enough sympathy to make OK the hellhole you've been in. However, I was feeling pretty shitty myself yesterday after the car overheated when a radiator plug worked its way loose and allowed all the coolant to spew all over the engine compartment and it still remained to be seen whether the car had run without coolant long enough to screw up the head gasket.
While we were waiting for the engine to cool down enough to work with it I got onto my computer and started reading your tale of woe, which totally put my own situation into perspective. Things around here were not so bad after all.

On the job-related topic: isn't all that shit (the stuff that Kwatch wrote about as well as the latest incident) illegal somehow? If not, it should be...


Jazz said...

Oh damn, I have so much catching up to do...