Thursday, November 12, 2009

gloom, despair, and agony on me

When I was younger, there was one day where, before work, I was sitting outside of the pizza place, smoking cigarettes and talking to my supervisor. I said something typically whiny, and after looking at me for a minute, my supervisor said, "You know, Mike, you sure like to complain."

I was could I know this man for a year and a half before he came to this startling revelation? Or maybe he just liked to point out the obvious.

Yes, I do like to complain. My dear Nanna used to be one of those "everything will work out in the end" type of people, and this always both befuddled and totally annoyed me...because I've always believed that moaning serves a real purpose. Things only work out in the end if someone sees what's wrong, what's holding them back, and does something about it. Plus, complaining is cathartic; my darling spousal unit realized that sometimes, I just want to moan. Whining has also become the hallmark of my there's no way I could stop now even if I was motivated to do so.

Today, though, I have reason. Moreover, it's one of the best reasons to complain: I have real evidence that the fates are aligned against me in two very tangible ways.

  1. A year or so back, I was starting to think through a paper on the tv show Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. For those of you who didn't see it, it was a good, occasionally brilliant program...slower moving than the films, yet intellectual and intriguing (rather than the "shoot-em-up" style of the films). I really loved the way the probram talked about intelligence, and the paper, I felt, would really be something. Then the show got canceled, and my preliminary work on the program became essentially wasted time...because who cares about a canceled show? At least, I assuaged myself, I didn't write a paper that ends up being useless. I decided from then on that I would take special care to make sure my topics were viable.

    Flash-forward to this summer and "the paper that wouldn't die 2009 edition" (you can read all the gory details if you so wish). I had planned to spend the summer working on the book, but this damn paper on Dollhouse's renewal wouldn't get out of my head. It even had the potential to be "important." So I spent 2.5 months writing a paper which argued its renewal signified network television moving away from a ratings-based model, and this signified...a whole bunch of vital and noteworthy stuff.

    What happens? Dollhouse got canceled yesterday...which makes my whole paper a non-starter. My summer was pretty much wasted. Damnit.

  2. This year, my university has decided, in its infinite wisdom, to change our health care options. Of course, my insurer is the one undergoing major changes, so, an hour-long presentation, several confusing web pages, and a 58 slide power point later, I finally decide on a new provider.

    As with every single year, I have to provide my HR department with a form stating that my darling spousal unit does not get insurance where she works. No sweat, right? She gives it to her HR Tuesday, and all they literally have to do is sign and write their phone number. She calls them today. They might be able to get it signed tomorrow. She asks them if they realize that she has to have it turned in tomorrow or she cannot get insurance. They know this, they tell her, but there are only two people who can sign this form, and they are both in a meeting.

    So now, my spousal unit may not get insurance because it apparently takes someone more than four days to sign their name.

These are just two of the reasons I hate the world and most everyone in it.

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