Wednesday, October 17, 2007


I am trying very hard not to be bitter, or angry, or hurt or just downright bitchy.

But I am consistently disappointed in people. For every kind deed, every glimpse of goodness in folks, there is someone waiting in the wings to remind me just how much people suck.

Currently that person is my overpaid, under-worked staff writer. It's my fault though. I have made the mistake of spoiling my entire staff and they have often mistaken that kindness for weakness, but at the moment, given the circumstances, I'm having a hard time viewing someone else's laziness as a simple character flaw and instead am taking it quite personally.

Although I have been warning my staff in recent months that a leave of absence was virtually eminent, apparently my staff writer never thought I would actually go through with it and now that she knows I fully intend to take some time off, she is angry. She doesn't seem to take into consideration the fact that I have actually offered to give up half my salary to bring another body into the office in my absence, someone who can help catch all the pictures, cover some of the meetings, etc. Nor has she taken into consideration the fact that in spite of being the highest paid staff writer in the entire company, her workload is considerably lighter than that of her counterparts. She has also not taken into account that I have delayed this decision for over a year, against the judgment of my oncologist and my family and why have I delayed? Because I was worried about the effect my extended absence would have on my staff.

She is now in a flat panic, not because she is afraid she can't cover things in my absence, but because she is afraid of the extra effort it will require. Effort, which apparently she is unwilling to put forth.

It's sad really. I learned a long time ago that it is in these types of situations, when it's time to step up to the plate, that you truly discover the best and worst in people.

By company standards, staff writers are expected to churn out 8-10 stories a week ad paginate a minimum of four pages every week. In an effort to make up for the numerous shortcomings of the company itself, I have allowed my staff writer to enjoy a much calmer, less stressful schedule that normally consists of 3-5 stories a week and paginating one page. She has enjoyed a flexible schedule that has allowed her to come in late and leave early and did I mention that she is the highest paid staff writer in the company? She makes more than many of our editors. She is now trying desperately to hurry up and find another job before I can take my absence. Needless to say, she is not at all considerate of the situation that will leave me in.

I have always tried so hard to live the Golden Rule, "do unto others as you would have them do unto you", but every now and then some selfish bitch will crawl out of the woodwork and make me want to smack her.

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