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Friday, January 31, 2003
Secrets Part 1

just a note that I posted these backwards, so they would show up in the correct order :)


The year was late 1998 or very early 1999...I had just hired on in a permanent full time staff position in a department for which I worked in a student assistant position since 1995- I was the senior student assistant for the department. The students all shared a tight space, it was like having a bunch of brothers and sisters. There were times you loved the camaraderie. There were other times that we got on each other's nerves, however there wasn't one student assistant whom I didn't get along with for the most part. As a student assistant I had seen the department go through three (now we are up to five) upper level managers and here I was being hired. It was a proud moment. I got my own cubicle, my own computer, my own phone extension, promises of a company laptop to call my own. I got all the secret passwords admin accounts that student assistants tend to dream about. It was a weird transition however. There was one student assistant I was particularly friendly with, we'll call him Chet. He was far older than me by how much I wasn't sure. He had a son aged 12...He use to work for Chevrolet. He was back in school to better himself, to get a degree in computer science, hence the reason he was working in our department. He reminded me a lot of my father in his speech patterns and his mannerisms, his knowledge about cars and other things mechanical. After becoming a full time staff I still strived to remain friendly with the student assistants. I was concerned when Chet started suffering from some illness and was often in the hospital...it was said that he was suffering from pancreatic cancer...it was stunning and sad...he still worked occasionally but was often too ill to come to work. I felt very sad...that the outlook was so grim and he had a young son...still, no one ever really talked about it, except for one of the technicians who was friendly with him...would occasionally visit him when he was in the hospital and give us updates.

It was back before our last reorganization. I was still in my cubicle upstairs and it was just starting to look like something of my own. It was lunch time, I think, or some other time when the upstairs floor was fairly empty. I was sitting in my cubicle when Chet came and sat in my spare chair and began chatting with me. We sat there and chatted about the usual stuff, however I was noticing that his mannerisms were strange. I attributed it to chemotherapy or the strain of being so ill. It was actually uncomfortable to think about while we were chatting. It was then that it happened.

He said "would you like to come over for a barbeque sometime? maybe you and the thompsons (husband and wife pair of technicians)?" I said sure, maybe sometime. Then he said "What I want to know is how come I haven't gotten into your pants yet?" The statement shocked me. Here I was, talking with a subordinate, whom I knew was severely ill. I didn't know how to respond, what to say, what to do. This was not something they talked about in new employee orientation that is for sure. I have never in my life been so....mortified. Horrified. Lost. Part of me even somehow felt dirty...even though I knew it was not on me...or was it?!?

posted by Amy on 1/31/2003 01:42:00 PM | link

BADGROOVE has a new home: badgroove.com You should be redirected.

Secrets Part 2

I don't remember how I diffused the situation, but I did. The next time I saw BFM I told her. I wanted her to know-in case something should happen. At a place where previously I had felt more comfortable there at then at home, I now felt excruciatingly not at home. I did all the wrong things. I didn't notify anyone at work...but I was never one to rock the boat, besides- maybe it was caused by some sort of dementia that was brought on by the cancer. My grandfather's cancer caused dementia towards the end. I couldn?t tell my mother, even though I was then and am now very very close to her, more because I felt embarrassed and somehow that it was my fault then anything else. I did want BFM to know though, just in case something further should happpen plus, I needed to tell someone. Well-Chet quickly got sicker and sicker and would not be at work at all, which for me was all the better. One of the other student assistants tried to get me to see him, but I wouldn't. Perhaps out of callousness?in that he made me soo uncomfortable.

Several months later I was sitting in my cubicle when I heard one tech say to the other. "Did you get that email from Chet?"
"Yeah"
"I have heard that it is quite common for alcoholics to disguise their problems by saying they are critically ill-I had a relative that did the same sort of thing. I think that the letter is part of the 12 step process- taking responsibility for your actions or something?"

Immediately I felt new emotions in the mix with all the others: anger, betrayal, sadness for his son.

I now know that he was most likely drunker than a skunk that day. That he probably, hopefully, doesn't remember any of what was said that day. I never did get the apology email. Part of me was angry though, angry that he did not apologize to me. But mostly I felt sad for him. For his son. I heard later that he left the university to try to get back on his feet. I never saw him again, and frankly, call me a grudge holder, but I am glad because I do not know what I would do should I ever see him again.

It is something that I don't like to think about. It somehow, even now, even knowing what I know...that makes me feel bad, that it was my fault. That it was something about me...something I did, something I said, something about me...I don't like to think about it, and I never ever talk about it, but for some reason it is something that I have been needing to exorcise from me--perhaps by writing it--by the anonymity of the whole journaling/blogging process that I can let it go? Let it leave me because that is really what I would like, to get amnesia and forget it completely

posted by Amy on 1/31/2003 01:41:00 PM | link

BADGROOVE has a new home: badgroove.com You should be redirected.

100 Things about Amy

1. I was born in January…my birthstone is a garnet and my flower is the carnation

2. I don’t like garnets or carnations, but I won’t complain if you give me either.

3. I have known my best friend for over 16 years.

4. I watch an inordinate amount of cartoons.

5. I have one brother. He is married.

6. I love to drive. My car is three years old and has 71000+ miles on it.

7. I have a personalize license plate. It is BADGRUV.

8. I have a black Toyota Rav 4…I love it.

9. My first car was a 1990 Chevy Lumina Euro Sedan. It was owned by my parents who then gave it to me.

10. I live on the central coast of California- one block away from fields of produce.

11. I am single and most of the time I love it.

12. I was in two car accidents in a three week span. Neither one was my fault.

13. I am owned by a tri-color beagle…Roxy. She is nearly a year old.

14. Roxy sleeps with me at night, usually on my feet.

15. I go to Las Vegas at least once a year. I love that place and would love to live there.

16. I would rather have an apple computer than a windows machine…but can sufficiently operate both platforms.

17. My father hails from California. My mother hails from New Jersey.

18. I like to sing (or howl) with the radio when I drive. I get a lot of weird looks because of this.

19. I love to get email and snail mail and tend to check them both frequently.

20. I dislocated my knee last June. I have never experience such pain before that.

21. I had to go to physical therapy for six weeks because of it.

22. I love to swim, but I don’t tend to do it much.

23. I am horribly nearsighted. So much so they just recently started making disposable contacts in my prescription.

24. I have hazel eyes.

25. I love to write.

26. I suck at writing poety.

27. I love the band Slaughter, still to this day, even though they haven’t really done anything in three years. Yet I am hopeful.

28. I have seen Slaughter live more times than I can count on both hands…all over the state of California…and once in Las Vegas.

29. I love Angel, the TV show. David Boreanaz…yummy.

30. I’m addicted to cheetos…and am eating some right now.

31. My favorite ice cream flavor is Ben & Jerry’s Chubby Hubby. Mint Chocolate Cookie is a close second.

32. My favorite computer game is THE SIMS and all the expansion packs…except the SIMS ONLINE.

33. My favorite movie is ALMOST FAMOUS.

34. The colors purple and silver are great together and my bedroom is decorated in purple and silver.

35. I secretly desire to be surprised on an episode of WHILE YOU WERE OUT.

36. I work at a University.

37. I started out as a student helper in the department I work in now in 1995…when I graduated I then temped there until a full time position opened up.

38. Including my jobs as a student helper and a temp…I have held 4 different positions within the same department.

39. I am deathly afraid of heights, glass elevators (the one at the Paris Casino in Las Vegas going up to the observation deck of the Eiffel tower made me cry), flying and spiders.

40. Because of these fears, I cried on the ferris wheel in Disney’s California Adventure…not full on boohooing but tears streamed outta my eyes anyway…and I really tried not to…I thought I could handle it…I really did.

41. Despite these fears…I am NOT afraid of the Stratosphere in Las Vegas…I dunno why.

42. The last time I flew on a plane was three weeks after the September 11th attack on the twin towers. I already didn’t like fly but I had these tickets and they were non refundable. The flight was only an hour and ten minutes each way.

43. On the return trip home our flight was over 3 hours late- because of a security problem on the plane. I wasn’t thrilled.

44. My mom makes the best hamburgers in the world.

45. I love cherry coke but rarely ever drink it.

46. I recently learned to crochet and am currently trying to make my first blanket. I hope to have it finished before the baby is born.

47. My cubicle at work is full of toys…most of them are kids meals toys.

48. The last time I was in Las Vegas, I saw Jubilee.

49. I have never seen so many boobs in my life.

50. I once stood in line for over three hours to get in a lottery to be able to buy Aerosmith tickets…I ended up being like 36th and got tickets.

51. The Aerosmith show I got tickets for was cancelled…the day of the show…and I didn’t know about it until I was in the town the show was in…which is nearly two hours away from my house.

52. I’ve seen Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent and others on tour.

53. I would love to see Metallica…but have never had the chance.

54. I have a digital camera (a canon powershot s300) and I love it.

55. I tend to lose the cables for my camera, which sucks. I have three of them laying around somewhere.

56. I also lost my spare battery but they are very expensive to replace. I am hoping to find it soon though.

57. I have bad luck owning fish..they always die.

58. My brother and I are closer now then we ever have been in our entire lives.

59. This is a good thing.

60. I have a collection of 18 iomega buttons on display on my cube wall…I only got a few of them myself…the rest were given to me. My favorite ones say “I’m freaky like that” , “Single female seeking man with drive” and “My vote was counted three times, was yours?”

61. I dislike people who ride your ass when driving, especially if you are going the speed limit.

62. I really really dislike people who flash their lights at me while I am driving, especially if I am going the speed limit.

63. I am very good at finding things on the web.

64. I will try nearly any food once…discounting gross fear factor type things like innards or animals.

65. I want to write a book.

66. I have a great idea for the book, no I will not tell you about it…except that it is non fiction.

67. I tend to be extremely shy.

68. Once you get to know me I am no longer shy.

69. A lot of people mistake my shyness for rudeness, snobbyness or stupidity. None of these I apply to me…I think.

70. When I was in junior high I scored in the 98th and 99th percentile on the standardized test for our grade.

71. Because of that I was put into GATE (gifted and talented education) classes.

72. I hated being in GATE and began to rebel.

73. I rebelled so hard they made me see the school psychiatrist- more than once.

74. I started blogging on LIVEJOURAL.

75. Then I moved to blogspot…now I use blogspot plus.

76. My cubicle mate and I hoard boxes…because we sell things on half.com.

77. I have a fetish for writing implements…specifically pens and very sharp pencils.

78. I do not like mechanical pencils.

79. I love the ocean.

80. When I write I tend to use … a lot. I know this is a bad thing…but I can’t help it sometimes.

81. My mom calls me at work to help her with computer problems. This is ok because I work at a computer help desk for the university.

82. The first computer I ever worked on the software, was a mac laptop. And I ended up hosing it so badly that the operating system had to be reinstalled.

83. The first computer I ever set up by myself was a Macintosh 7500.

84. The first computer I ever bough brand new was a Macintosh IMAC SE.

85. I do not know how to change a tire…but I am willing to learn.

86. I love going to Hearst’s Castle in San Simeon. I have been on several of the tours.

87. I have never been out of the country.

88. The only other states I have been in are: Nevada, Oregon and Arizona.

89. I was only in Arizona for a couple of minutes.

90. I dream of driving across the United States…just because.

91. I love the scent of mint.

92. I can’t draw very well at all, but I wish that I could.

93. Oh, I forgot to tell you that I also have a fear of horses.

94. I have never been stung by a bee…yet (as of 03.27.03).

95. When I was 13 I swear I saw a ghost. It was of a woman and a child holding hands standing in the middle of the street. I haven’t seen them since..

96. I have a horrible sense of direction. I can get lost in a mall.

97. Once in 1984 or 1985 I was hiking and actually got very lost.

98. It was the only time I ever got Poison Oak.

99. I think I am normal.

100. In junior high physical education class I was tormented by the girl who sat next to me in roll call. I still loathe her to this day.

posted by Amy on 1/31/2003 01:34:00 PM | link

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JANUARY:
Stubborn and hard-hearted. Ambitious and serious. Loves to teach and be taught. Always looking at people's flaws and weaknesses. Likes to criticize. Hardworking and productive. Smart, neat and organized. Sensitive and has deep thoughts. Knows how to make others happy. Quiet unless excited or tensed. Rather reserved. Highly attentive. Resistant to illnesses but prone to colds. Romantic but has difficulties expressing love. Loves children. Loyal. Has great social abilities yet easily jealous. Very Stubborn and money cautious.
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Special Thanks to Benway for the technical assistance and Shanni's Twiggle designs for the design!