Tuesday, April 24, 2007

What a week... (useless ranting)

Well, I guess I'm here today to rant, vent, and otherwise get crap off my chest. I came home yesterday early to immerse myself in the remodeling as a way to vent some steam, only to stare dumbfounded at a bottle of hardwood cleaner that had fallen over on my floor, seeping in between the wood and ruining 3 planks of my new floor. Oh, to say I was pissed would be an understatement. I went completely nuts.. lol. I had just spent 2 hours shopping, buying base boards, trim accessories, etc and had the house all laid out so I could finish the mouldings yesterday afternoon. All of the sudden I look down and my already-sour mood was turned to vinegar.

I had to rip up the entire floor almost all the way back tothe front door in order to re-lay those three boards. I was so pissed and careless that I destroyed two more perfectly good boards in the process. Halfway through, I decided to run back to lowe's and get some more materials and take out my agression on someone I didn't know instead of fuming around the house scaring april half to death. I was most definitely NOT the guy to be around yesterday.

So, 11 PM found me just really starting on what I had planned to start on at 2 PM, however by this time I had worked through the frustrations with physical labor and was merely resigned to the tasks ahead. Seeking to achieve SOME feeling of accomplishment, I did at least get the baseboards laid and caulked in. I'll paint them tonight I think and get back on the swing of things by tomorrow.


Let's see, what else has gone wrong this last week? Oh yeah.. I got a ten thousand dollar pay cut. You work for someone for 15 months when all the rest of staff leaves him high and dry, you stick with him through the hard times and even travel 6 thousand miles around the world when no one else would go and what do you get... screwed for ten thousand dollars a year! I don't have the explecatives at hand to properly describe my thoughts on the matter, but you can imagine that most of them would be horrible machinations of the queen's english. It's been a really really realy rough couple of week.

Why, you ask, would some cut someone's pay ten thousand dollars? Oh.... apparently Attitude. I've been working nights, weekends, days in and days out to try to fix this project before it gets any more screwed up than it already is, and I've been shut down at every turn. I've pulled double the hours of anyone on this damned project and that's how I get rewarded? Wow.... thanks! The paperwork I'm sent from the client says "do this" so I do it. However, apparently my CEO doesn't want me to actually do it the way they've asked.. he want's me to make some illegible documentation that's meaningless to anyone who has to read it. So, since I'm not good with bullshitting, I just did my job the way I 'm supposed to...the way the document he sent me asked me to, thoroughly and with detail. This resulted in a pay cut. Way to reward motivation. Actually, I had a choice in the matter... how nice huh? I could choose to take the pay cut or I could choose to find another job... great job security huh?

I can't even find words to express how disappointed I am in the whole process right now. I devote fifteen months of my life towards some thing and then get sh** on by someone who has no comprehension about how to do what I do.

So, what's on the plate now? Well, in addition to the pay cut, I've been demoted to engineer status. Now we have no "project manager" AND have a new network manager this late into the project. Anyone else here seeing my frustration? So, I was demoted 4 work days ago. I went in to work yesterday to see what's been done in the last four days? Nothing..... absolutely nothing. Six months into this and I still have people telling me that they're trying to find part numbers for items? How absolutely retarded do we look when half the staff doesn't know what parts we're installing on the project? I spent 60+ hours creating a master spreadsheet containing white-papers, part numbers, spec sheets, and diagrams of EVERY single part, right down to the manuals for how to operate our hand tools... it's already been done... and then I get told that it's not what we need. Does anyone actually READ the hundreds of pages of detailed requests out cilents send us? I do.. I know what the request is.. and I fulfill in. As reward, I get shit-canned and busted down a rank.  Four days go by and I hear that we're waiting on parts information.... I'd like to print that spreadsheet, cut it into tiny ribbons, and papecut eveyrone involved until they bleed to death from it!

So.... where'd everyone go? Yeah, I'm a little miffed at this point. And the only thing making it worse is that I've been lied to time and time again about the money I'm supposed to be paid that's been owed to me for.. lemme see... August unti now is......9 months! So, I'm owed ten thousand dollars and then get another ten thousand dollar pay cut.. that's twenty thousand dollars I've been screwed out of in the last 30 days... glutton for punishment? Possibly.

On the upside, I'm trying to get this shit out of my system and get my head right again, hence I'm venting here on the blog. I'm the kind of person who needs to release his agressions and then I'm fine. However, I feel that this time it's taking longer to release than usual. I've been biting heads off for a week now.

The problem is... ya wanna know? I'll tell you. I'm a conceited prick when it comes to my work. There.. it's out there. I've always known it and always admitted it. Those of you who know me, stop shaking your heads in agreement.

Prick-aside, NO one outperforms me, works harder, works longer, or throws more energy into the project. I was just raised from a young age to believe that ANYTHING in life that's worth doing is worth doing well. My father and especially my grandfather instilled a strong sense of pride in my work in me. If I'm going to have my name and my reputation banking on something, it's going to be the absolute best out there. No one's work will compare to it and my WORK will get me the credit and appreciation, not words, ass-kissing, or anything else. I stand behind what I can deliver and nothign else matters.

This is why I don't do the "employee" or subordinate thing well. I hate being under anyone who doesn't work as hard or as doggedly as I do, so I dont work under people.. ever. For the last 15 years of my professional life (which is most of it) I have been the boss. I'm the boss because that's the only way I don't get resentful of other people's lazy attitudes. If someone has to work overtime, I do it, cause I'm the boss. I don't ask others to do what I won't do or don't already do. I lead from the front line and make them keep up with me, rather than lead from the rear with a whip and scream uselessly at people.

So, all things considered, I'm not sure how I'm going to handle this "employee" thing.. I just don't do well working under people who aren't as smart as me. (again, that may sound like a prick, but that's how I am. Either you are or are not more intelligent. If you are, I want to learn. if you're not, get out of my way and let me teach you something.) I've never been demoted in my entire life, ever! I've not even been written up since I was 16 and late to work once. I've only worked under two people in my entire life that I had immediate and lasting respect for. Michael Turner and Bill Stovall. These are the only two men who made me want to subjigate myself to allow me to learn from them. They're both successful, both intelligent, and both have long lasting proof that their business models are viable ones.

Now, to give credit where credit is due, the man I'm working "under" now is excepted from this tirade. He's not a business-minded person, but he's technically very proficient in what we do, and he's my best friend. Am I pissed? Of course I'm pissed, but not at him. I'm pissed at someone who tells me that 15 years of successfully making good, informed business decisions and being able to read my client's wishes clearly and address them are less important skills than just not rocking the boat and saying "umm.. ok" to anything I'm told to do.

God.. I still just want to hit something. I'm SOOO frustrated. I'm just not sure it's worth it anymore. For God's sake, my team and I have turned down repeated job offers since taking this project, and for what? We've had offers from Britain, Libya, America... all with much higher pay, and we stayed here to have this crap happen to us?

Crap.. it's 9:20 in the morning. I really need to go to work this morning. I just don't want to walk in the office and blow up an someone. This whole shituation has put me in a funk.. and I hate being in a funk. I can't work when I'm agressive. I need to be clear-headed and motivated to succeed, which is hard to do when you're.. well, nevermind that statement. That would have been rude.

So, instead I sit here typing to you all, wearing my bath-robe, accomplishing nothing of note, which in itself irritates me because I'm supposed to be being productive and DOING something... I'm just not sure what until all the heads come out of the sand and point me in a direction. ONE of us (not I) has to come up with a complete Category 4 TIA 606-A scheme for this project or nothing else can be done. I've been yelling about this for two weeks... actually I've been quietly working it out on my own, and had been planning to deliver it completed and say "ha.. there we go.. voila.. now let's go to work" but this merry little jaunt off the career chain sent that idea out the window. I'm absolutely not going to be demoted and then do a job that's the responsibility of those above me to figure out. (Quite honestly, I'm betting no one will do it at all and then we'll get there and be screwed because they will only then see why it's required, when it's too late.) But hey, what are international networking standards anyway? What the hell do they know? I mean, c'mon, we can just use tape and sharpies right?

Fiber-optic link loss budgeting? Not done. 606 Scheme? Not done. 568B stadards and practices? Not followed. For Christ sakes, they only NOW figured out they got the wrong fiber cable for this when I've been screaming about the fiber problems since February!

I guess I'll see how it goes. Hopefully, if everyone in management gets their heads out of the sand, we'll be heading back to Africa soon, but who knows? Hell, at this rate, I'm liable to be fired before that happens. At this point, nothing would surprise me...

I'll chat again soon, hopefully about something a little more positive.


  1. Here goes Mom speaking - you deserve better than this. I don't want you to take this lying down. That's why you have prepaid legal. And this is your business - but I would not leave the US again until ALL your back wages are paid.You have been grossly taken advantage of here and that really makes me ANGRY. Love Mom

  2. Amen sista!! That's what I've been trying to say all along..... but my opinion doesn't weigh as much, I guess. I'm not even going to begin to tell you how mad I have been, I'd probably be locked up for just thinking the things that I have!!

  3. PS: I want to be there the day Brenda and April take down the Man. It will be fantastic. I'll sell the popcorn, who's got the nachos?

    ;-) ~ Katie

  4. ur eloquant anger has only motivated me to work even harder.

    respect tommy.



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