The Man at Work Who I Hate

There’s a guy at work that I hate.

He sits right next to me and talks my ear off from the moment I get in until the moment I leave. He crowds my personal space, interrupts my work,  and compromises my productivity.

I try everything I can to get him to stop his relentless yammering. But on he goes. “This job is pointless.” “This place stinks.” “What are we doing here anyway?” “Why do we bother to get up in the morning?” “I’ll never amount to anything.”

I try everything I can think of to block him out. I glare. I shake my head. I roll my eyes. I turn my back. I put on headphones and try to drown him out. But still he keeps talking.

It’s like this every day from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. This guy never calls in sick, he never takes a vacation, and he never has a day when he just doesn’t feel like talking.

How am I supposed to work in an environment like that?

I know, I know. I should pay a visit to human resources, or talk to my supervisor, or ask to switch seats.

We all have work to do, and it’s not fair that I should have to put up with a constant stream of abuse all day.

I mean, this is the 21st century.

We have codes of conduct and standards and ethics that we have to uphold.

We cannot verbally harass our co-workers.

There is no gray area here.

I am in the right.

There’s just one little problem, however.

That guy is me.


Elance and I are Breaking Up (for now)

Dear Elance,

I think it’s time we see other people.

I’m sorry to do this in such an impersonal way, but things just aren’t working out.

You are just a little too high maintenance for this time-stressed Monkey right now.

Oh please don’t cry. I’m not blaming you or pointing figures. It’s not you, it’s me.

You may be a wonderful writing service for freelancers who have the time to search and scour and scrape for work, but for a full-time Monkey who just wants a little something on the side, it’s just not there for us.

Look Elance, let’s not call it quits forever, OK?

Let’s just agree that we want different things right now. You want $10 a month for the right to request writing work, and this Monkey doesn’t want to pay for something if it’s not going to fit his schedule.

Maybe in the future we can sit down and have a drink and laugh about all this. Or maybe we can give it another shot if I have the time and you’re still around.

I mean, we did go through the whole orientation process together, right? I know about all your procedures and policies and the right way to resolve a billing conflict.

You know that I am bashful and suspicious and am wary of just about every job posting. You’ve seen me toss and turn at night wondering if it is possible (or even reasonable) to write hundreds of SEO optimized articles for less than $500.

No one is at fault in this relationship. Sometimes the best of people (or of Monkeys and online job services) just aren’t right for each other.

So let’s just fondly say goodbye for now.

Yours Truly,

Grumpy S. Monkey

Work, Writing

Let’s See How this Elance Thing Works Out

Your Monkey is now more determined than ever to find a new job and expand his mind and build his skills and all that good stuff.

There is only so long that one plucky primate can feed the copy monster at his present position before he goes mad.

Madness for your Monkey will not be all giggling and shaking and the ignornant bliss of  being unaware. Your Monkey will not stop showering and start writing love letters to his stapler.

Instead the Madness that comes is a sickness that makes your monkey feel very very low and makes it difficult for him to get through the day. The Madness makes him think that he is locked in an endless, unwinnable battle against the forces of copy entropy.

How many words can you type, how many product offers can you edit, how many inconsistencies and you find and resolve, and how many new problems can you create because you’re asked to handle so many words on a daily basis?

The traditional job market is still as dry as ever, so your Monkey has taken the time to join up with this Elance freelance service to see if any work might come out of there.  Any and all of these freelance writing opportunities that come up on the web seem ripe with the potential for ripoff.

But someone recently wrote a blog post (damned if this Monkey can remember who it was) who compared Elance to a flea market where you will get some of the good, some of the bad, and some in between. You just have to be a careful shopper.

So we will see how it goes. Your Monkey is not looking to get rich for doing nothing, but he would like to develop his skills and perhaps diversify his income.

On the plus side for Elance, there is a long and involved qualifying process that includes a fairly detailed multiple choice test, so it appears that they are at least trying to weed out some of the riff raff.

We shall see what happens.