Tag Archives: Work

I’m Back Baby!

I’ve been away from blogging

(the featured image is of a cherry grown from a tree I planted 10 years ago. It fruited in July. A timely metaphor for this period of time.)

I can’t point to any one reason why I haven’t blogged this past month-plus. Guess the creative tank was empty. I tried to force myself to write a couple times the past month…

Last month I installed an app that tracks my phone use. Its called “StayFree” (I’m not being paid to say this, though I’d sell out to). And my results have been… Embarrassing.

I have a serious internet addiction problem. (Though I guess the app missed all the time I spent listening to audiobooks on audible. I don’t count that time since it’s good for me.) I’ve known this has been a problem for a while, and especially the past year. But damn. 274 hours?! Oof.

Wow, I expected my total use time to be much lower than 8 hours 😐. I certainly didn’t spend much of that writing.

The content I did write didn’t feel up to par. I don’t know. I’ve felt scattered and unfocused when writing. Maybe I’m being too hard on myself, or stuck in perfectionist tendencies. (Edit: today I cut up and saved the useful bits. Which became this post)

Whatever it is, I feel like my life is at another transition point. I feel a shift to something new.


French Toast, Donny Burgers, Peanut Butter, and Lemon Slushee Weed oh my!

It’s been a bit since the last blog post. (34 days!) I’ve simply been busy. Well, not that busy… More focused on doing well at my new job. Hyper-focused. I like what I do for work: trimming weed, my coworkers, and the company. (I wish that I could post pictures. I can’t because this is a form of social media. I wonder if it’s okay a)

Eat, work, sleep. Repeat. As for writing, it’s felt like the creative well was low, and I needed a small break.

Everything is going well, and I’m slowly feeling secure the company will last more than 4 months. ( I have no reason to see that they’d close or fail. Thanks anxiety… )

I’m giving it my all, and am happy to. The goal of the company is to have the best cannabis in the state. Its a mindset shift. At my last job, they also had high standards for trimming, but you can only do so much with average quality product. Its so refreshing to work at a company like this. Its like a high end restaurant… Without the soul destroying stress, heat, or snobbery.

Last week, we were ‘bucking’ which is to cut cured and dried branches of product to a smaller size for storage, and the work room smelled like french toast. The kind that uses fake high fructose corn syrup, imitation vanilla extract, butter, and ground cinnamon/nutmeg you can find in a grocery store spice shelf.

A huge perk of working with weed is the aromas. The best stuff or dank, can smell like so many things. From diesel, to skunk, to flowers, to a tropical island, to french toast. Grown perfectly, it sticks to your gloved hands.

Pictured above: Peanut Butter Crunch cannabis. I received this as a sample to smoke. Getting samples is a perk of working in the cannabis industry. Thanks Fire Bros! This strain is available at recreational stores in WA state!

They’ve been around 5 years, built a massive new warehouse to grow multiple times more product due to demand, and hiring people to meet it.

The work is pleasant, yet challenging. I feel it’s opened my mind back to a time when I enjoying being the best I can. To grow every day at work. I had this at my last weed job too. Its a very different culture when everyone is in the same building. My last job was a branch location. (Except for our growing team. There is a massive warehouse where our weed is grown. It used to be in our building.) Its a nice change to regularly see the owner and upper management around doing whatever needs done. They ask how we’re doing. They want feedback for improvement and mean it.

So many green flags, yet I’m paranoid. I’m trying not to worry about the other shoe dropping. I don’t want to lose this job. Good people, good work place, good company.


Once again, the coronavirus pandemic has been the antagonist.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/How-Do-I-Get-a-COVID-19-Vaccine.html

(AKA: Yes, but) I had two separate covid scares week. I was feeling sick on Monday — fatigue, fever, muscle soreness, and common cold symptoms– so I left work after 45 minutes. I drove to the drive thru testing center and got a precautionary Covid test to be safe. The test center said results would be ready in 24-48 hours. So, I had that stress along with not knowing what’s up.

Tuesday morning, the first covid test was negative! What a relief… I’m just sick with a cold. So I took it easy. I had just enough energy to fill my ballot, and dropped it off at a local community center voting drop box…. Driving there in my new car!

I finally have my own car! A 2013 Toyota Prius! All thanks to my Dear Aunt M! Love you Aunt M!

Picture of 2013 prius
Yeah, like that. I’m not comfortable sharing my car yet. This’ll do for now.

Wednesday I went to work driving by myself in my car for the first time in… like 7 or 8 years. That whole time I was sharing a car with my mother because it was convenient and I couldn’t afford another car. Basically because of poor mental health and working minimum wage jobs. But hey, my mental health has improved so much due to therapy and the right mix of medications. If it wasn’t for my own persistence for my health, and good decisions, I would not be in this good spot where I have options. I still have stuff to work on, but l’m treading water. I’ll take it. With this I can progress. I am so grateful all of that.

I worked the day, double masked for safety. I got through the day, but was exhausted. I should have stayed home.

Thursday morning, I turn on my phone and get a message on slack from one of my bosses. Another potential Covid exposure at work on Monday. Work was cancelled, everyone who got tested got a sick day. I got tested again and had to wait another 24 hours for a result.

Friday. That morning the result was: Negative! Whew. It seems most of my coworkers tested negative too, so that is reassuring. I decided to take Friday off too as I wasn’t much better.

In Summary, Two negative covid tests, but a strong cold. Waiting for test results is fucking stressful. While we have a mask mandate at work, it could be enforced a bit more. I feel like there needs to be a company meeting going over what masks are considered safe (A few coworkers wear neck gaiters, which don’t provide proper protection), how to properly wear a mask (Aka over the nose, on at all times inside), and we need a vaccine requirement for employment.

I’m fucking tired of being considerate anymore. Way past being patient. It’s been 16 months. The pandemic is still raging, and I’ve done everything right. It’s fucking bullshit that only 50% of people are vaccinated at this point. I wish our government would save the remaining vaccines for the kids under 12, send the rest out to the parts of the world that actually want them, and force the unvaccinated adults (who do not have a valid medical exemption) to have pay for it through our insurance system. I want to run up to a denier and shake them. Don’t you care about kids? Don’t you care about the elderly? Don’t you care about the sick? Don’t you care about the well being of your friends or family? Don’t you care about your fellow human?

This lyric from A change gon come by Sam Cooke sums up how I feel right now as an American, as a person of the world:

“Then I go to my brother
And I say, “Brother, help me please”
But he winds up knockin’ me
Back down on my knees”

This came up on Genius.com for the song lyrics:

“This line refers to Blacks in the United States who did not openly support the Civil Rights Movement. Often, these people were afraid of violent retribution, and preferred to keep their fellow men “on their knees” in front of whites to avoid conflict. Cooke’s record producers were especially guilty of this.

They were more interested in keeping him popular among white listeners, than allowing him to speak out against race-related injustices in his music. This song was the first politically charged recording of Cooke’s, and was his way of “getting off of his knees.”

Ironically, the track was initially buried on the B-side of a semi-popular single by his producers. Rather than being released to stand on its own, the executives were too worried it would degrade Cooke’s popularity with whites.”

https://genius.com/1300893

It’s no wonder why it another civil rights reckoning is happening during the pandemic. (Fucking stalled in the Senate by the same people making the pandemic worse, Republicans). Everyone is equal in the face of a virus. Corona Virus doesn’t care about your skin color, your feelings, your politics, anything about you. It exist to spread in the ideal conditions. The only way you are safe is to get the vaccine. To wear a mask, and distance from others.

You know… I think I need a Pandemic Anger Anonymous support group. Something. Another year of this? Ugh.

Oh, I finally feel a sense of peace and understanding regarding all the grief I went through last year. I’m truly sorry, and vow to never act that way ever again.

Its nice to not have that weighing on me everyday… on top of 2021’s stuff.

Rest in Peace, Aunt Ann.


Thank you for reading this, I realize I haven’t been consistently lately… And I want to get back on the blog horse. If you enjoyed this, please give it a like, and tell me what you think in the comments! Don’t forget to subscribe to my email list for updates!

Please GET VACCINATED, wear a mask indoors or near people, that covers your mouth and nose. Wash your hands, clean your cell phone, and keep your physical distance (6 feet) from others to fight Covid-19! 

© Reilly Anderson. 2021. All rights reserved.

Another lay off 🤬😦🤦/The Mirror

Itll be good to get a haircut and beard trim. I could lose some weight too 😜 😅

This post was written in pieces through this week and I had a different plan in mind. Friday at the end of work changed it.

Layoff number 3 in a row.

First reaction in my head while learning about the layoff.

Unfortunately I called it before it happened. I saw the signs… Grim face on my boss after he read an email on the PC in the work area… A mysterious announcement at the end of work, then, calling people one by one to meet with them. All signs I saw before at my last two jobs, which I was laid off from. I happened to be the last to find out as I was the last person called in.

I think I had a good poker face in the exit interview. Kept it professional.

3 lay offs in a row… Really life?

I’m fine. Or as my family joked after dad died: Fine = Fucked up, Insecure, Neurotic, Emotional. Fuck. It’s painful to be laid off as is. 3 times in a row. 🤬 My emotions are a raging torrent inside. I dunno if I have it me to work another two weeks. It ain’t like they (former employer) treated me unkindly… –Like the lyric from Don’t think twice by Bob Dylan– But I have limits. I recognize that the wound is fresh, and I’m hurting from this loss. But I feel this would be self harm. I deserve better. I refuse to put up with people or things that hurt me.

Unfortunately, there aren’t that many cannabis job postings for the same job in my area right now. So I’ll give this employer one week because they’ve been good to me. I have a barber shop appointment at a place close to work. I have unemployment left, thanks to the extensions.

Maybe I’m handling this situation calmly because I’ve set appropriate boundaries with work. It’s a conditional relationship, and a capitalist relationship. I have to do what’s best for me as a worker, because we are replaceable. I don’t have to show up tomorrow if I don’t want to. I have FU money. (Well, poverty level FU money. 😅 I wish I had rich person FU money, lol )

For the first time since last year when I chose values for myself, I am in a values conflict. So I’ll work one more optional week because it helps me grow as a person. This last week showing up with my best for someone else will help my future self show up best for me. I deserve it. I deserve to be treated well, and treat myself well.

I have one job lead for a cannabis retail job, but it’s not ideal. I am grateful for this from my friend Chris. Retail work is not something I’m naturally good at. Extraverted jobs are a natural weakness for a typical introvert like me. (Correction: two job leads. My cousin that I consider my older sister… Needs my help next month. The job is to help her with my aunt’s house. )

Maaaaan… Things were starting to look up, so being laid off is frustrating. I feel betrayed by my employer.

But… This quote from Models by Mark Manson (who quoted this from No more Mr. Nice guy by Robert Glover) has been playing in my head since Friday:

“What if it (any difficult situation in life) was a gift?”

Robert Glover, No more Mr nice guy.
I hate this quote at times because I’m tired of “losing” in work.

The Man in the Mirror

I’m not satisfied with the reflection of myself right now. That’s on me. I can do better, and I want to do better. This is from a position of peace of mind, not insecurities. I want to have the best possible life I can, for me first, then others. I am enough. I can do better, too. I’m ready.

Despite the chickens dying last week, life has been pretty good. Pretty much sleep, work, eat, play with cats, smoke a bowl of pot, go to bed early because I’m tired, sleep.

Ready to integrate, to have a social life again.

An in person social life. It finally feels safe to hang out with people. I’ve been fully vaccinated for a month, yet still hesitant to reach out to friends while also feeling lonely. So, two weeks ago, I set up an appointment at a barber shop. It’s the first time I’ll be going to one, and the plan is to get a professional haircut and beard trim. I haven’t had a haircut in over a year, and frankly look like a scraggly hobo. I don’t like feeling this way.

I’m feeling over cutting my hair myself. A plus of the pandemic is that I learned that I like having long hair, and a long beard. I’d forgotten what it felt like to be worried about my appearance, and how great it feels to look the best you can. I deserve to treat myself and take care of myself for myself first, because I’m worthy. Get a goal, I get to practice self care, get to practice feeling enough, and I get to go out and socialize with new people in a new place. My future self will thank me.

Figured out new things to work on myself

  • Professional Haircut and beard trim. (Tired of cheap cuts and the inconsistency)
  • Clothes. I need to sort through what I have. I’ve remembered what it felt like to dress well, and feel proud of myself for it.
  • Hangout with friends and meet new people.
  • Need financial advice for my plans to get a car, and move out likely to an apartment.
  • I’d like to join an ultimate frisbee group/team. And/or a muy tai gym… I enjoyed some muy tai classes last year with my brother and a friend. (The obstacle to this is if they’re open now, and if they require being vaccinated. I don’t want to risk getting covid in an enclosed space grappling with people who aren’t vaccinated.)
  • Go out into nature. Like once a month. Hiking or whatever.
  • It’s been years since I last saw a game in person in the Seattle stadiums. I haven’t been to a Seahawks game at Lumen field before. Been like seven years since my last Mariners game. To be fair, they’ve sucked for years. Being a Mariners fan is painful at times. I’d like to go to a Seattle Kraken game this season. They’re a new expansion NHL team, and this is their first season. I don’t know much about hockey, so this will be fun to learn.
  • Want to get my first tattoo. Then see how I feel about another after some time. I’ve wanted to get a tattoo and had it in the back of my head for years.
  • And of course, dates and dating. I’m getting used to the reality that this is a marathon. I’m not perfect and that’s okay. I’m okay with self improvement.

The next step: change from a pandemic hermit.

So, back to dressing well to feel good, get a new look, do activities that interest me, and learn to be a friend. Back to the self work I had as a goal before the pandemic.

It’s time to see friends, and lead by example. I have to follow through on reconnecting with all the people in life. I miss many people, and the pandemic really clarified what I will have with boundaries and values.

Saturday update: I went and hung out with my friend Chris at his house. It was a wonderful time. It was a cookout for his birthday, so we smoked, I met a friend of his, and his gf, and we chilled. They have 4 dogs, and two cats, so I got to visit them too. It felt weird going to an indoor place without a mask, even though everyone is vaccinated, but after a little bit it felt normal. It felt good to be comfortable with friends again. Oh yeah, and he had Pepsi Blue! I thought it didn’t exist anymore, but it does! So I drank 3 sodas while hanging out Saturday. It was like drinking a time warp to sophomore year in highschool. When I’d drink this after snowboarding.

Monday edit: How could I forgot to mention… I got to meet my friends infant daughter. It was the first time in my life where I was able to interact with a baby… Without the baby being forced on me, or I’m guilt tripped for not wanting to hold the baby. I like and am good with kids. Don’t force it on me. One, it crosses a boundary by entering my physical space, and Two, I want to experience things in life on my own. I don’t have to have the same experiences my parents had.

So, this nice experience with my friends daughter helped me with this.

Feels weird to think that I can resume a social life. Today, I feel like a massive weight was lifted. I’m not feeling lonely as I have felt for a while.

Friends are awesome 😎.

Now that things are safe because people are getting vaccinated, and in person activities are resuming, so shall I. My future is outside, in the world.


Some dating success

I’ve been texting this lady for a couple weeks. I’ve asked her out for different date activities, but she’s been busy. She’s sent pictures (and I’ve found no signs of a catfish yet), and been responsive to messages when she has time. I’m remaining hopeful for the best… While being cautious to protect my heart. I’m showing up, being vulnerable, and growing from past mistakes in this dating phase. I am enough. I am worthy.

Losing my job is frustrating because I feel like I can’t date without a job, but maybe that’s just insecurity. Maybe this person will be the exception and not dump me.


I’d like to give a special shout-out appreciation to the WordPress community, and fellow bloggers. You’ve been an awesome support since the beginning. I’m so grateful for you. Thank you.

And as always, Thank you everyone who read this post, and follows this blog! Was there a time you looked at yourself, accepted who you were, and knew you could do better, for you?

Beginnings, Middles, Ends…


Beginnings

For my entire adult life until like April of this year, I was ashamed at my sparse dating experience. I felt my shame was obvious to everyone else, despite me never telling anyone in person. I felt safe to in the anonymous false comfort of Reddit and other message boards. Now, I think: Fuck it. It is what it is. I’ve come to terms with it. I can’t change the past, and I’m not starting from zero. I do have experience, and knowledge about relationships and dating. The few times I have been in the dating pool, I’ve learned each time. In the past year, I’ve grown so much, it’s like I got a college degree in that stuff.

But ultimately a degree is an ending and a starting point. The whole point of learning anything is to use that information in the world. Though I’ve changed for the better, I’m still afraid. Afraid of rejection. I’m afraid I’m not enough. Last month, I paid for a month of Tinder and Bumble and not much luck. I’ve gotten a handful of matches, but only one conversation went somewhere with a real person. Fucking catfish.

Which, when I told her that met someone (the catfish before I figured it out), and wished her luck. I got an amazing response back, which was heartwarming. I’m not sure I want to reconnect yet… My heart needs to rest.

To be fair, I feel my dating profile might need improvement. Therefore, I have room to improve as a person, as a man. Thanks to stuff easing up, I can go out and do activities in person with vaccinated people. Online dating is ruthless with men because we outnumber women by a ratio of 2-3 to 1… So you really need to stand out to get noticed. Finally I can have fun and get pictures. By living life for the sake of it.

I have a day left on Tinder premium and it feels like all the women are blending into the same person… Highly active who lives outdoors outside of work, drinks, doesn’t want a hookup while having multiple pictures with cleavage or lingerie , has a blank profile, lists their instagram, their dog is their baby (To be clear, I like dogs. but the obsession and pictures they choose with their dogs is unsettling.). The worst is when they match after I like them then never respond.

Technically I’m in the middle of my dating journey and that’s enough. I guess I assumed I would have this stuff figured out by now at 35…

Everyone starts somewhere. I’m in the process of figuring it out.


Middles

I feel I’ve entered a transition period in my life. As of last week, I’m fully vaccinated, been at my job for a month and thriving, and things are starting to open up again. While the CDC lifted the mask mandate for vaccinated people, I’m going to continue to wear a mask until 80% of the US population is vaccinated. This year has taught me that you can’t trust people to do the right thing in America. The pandemic isn’t over folks. Be safe, for the children who are waiting to be vaccinated, and those who are medically vulnerable. Please, Get the covid 19 vaccine folks.

It feels strange emerging into the post pandemic world as a privileged vaccinated person. I do want to see friends again, but still paranoid of getting covid-19 from other people. Even if we’re both vaccinated. While I’m treated for the virus, I haven’t recovered from the side effects of the PTSD from the pandemic. I can thank my past recovery from PTSD for this. Without that, I’m not in the dark and can work through each stage of the grief.

I’ve had trouble writing posts for the blog as I’ve adjusted to my job. Thankfully, it has a consistent schedule, I am good at the work, I know what to expect every day, and I like my coworkers, but it takes time to adjust to new routines. Sorry for the missed posts and random post times. Things should get back on track soon. It’s been a big adjustment from being unemployed and having time whenever to write, to working full-time again.

I’ve been thinking of trying something different with the blog. In the about me page, I said that I want to write fiction, to publish a novel and/or a screenplay, and recipes. So far posts have been heavy on my life, and I feel I need to write about something different. Those things were put aside in 2020 because I felt the need to work through the difficult things going on in my life. In this new stable period of life, it feels like the right time to work on those again. Which seems to be a theme in life right now.


Endings

I had my final therapy appointment this week, meeting my therapist for the first time, for the last time, in person. All of the therapy appointments for the past year plus have been over zoom. On my desktop screen for a good part of the pandemic 2020, then on zoom through my cellphone screen. 14 months working together, during the pandemic over the internet.

Mirror, mirror on the wall, connect me to zoom. I have therapy in 5 minutes…
Photo by Max Vakhtbovych on Pexels.com

We met at a park after work. It was warm and sunny, and it many people were out on the large path. It was the first time I’ve walked along that park, and it was lovely. Most people were still wearing masks, and it felt like I was baring cleavage by not wearing a mask, despite being vaccinated. Having an outside therapy appointment was a little weird but okay for a final meeting. It was a review of our time together, how far I’ve come, and where each of us are going from here. It was nice to be able to hug her as we met, and as we left to go our own ways. I said “Thank You” one last time. I’ll forever be grateful to her. Thanks to her I was able to trust therapists. I was able to experience for myself that therapy does work. I was able to not be terrified that she would leave out of the blue. Unlike doctors or any other specialists, you can’t change them often. You need to be able to trust that your therapist will be with you working on your issues for a long period of time. Often several months for each thing, after you’ve built trust.

I’m slowly realizing that our time working together is over. All this happened at a good time. It felt like a natural transition. We were in a spot where I was figuring out what to work on next in therapy.

I am in a really great place in life because I chose to continue on. and gave therapy one more try… Despite being letdown or heartbroken in my quest to get it. I’m not used to feeling proud of myself. I still feel weird expressing myself and who I am. I have things to work on, and will work on for the rest of my life like everyone does.

I may have been unemployed, and looking for employment, but my actual job last year was as a person in therapy showing up and doing the work. I didn’t waste the precious time I had last year.

It was a bittersweet end. Once again I’m without a therapist. I’m so grateful that I had her help during this time. I hit rock bottom last year, and the pandemic made recovery worse. I’m here today better than I’ve been in years because of therapy. That said, I feel I have quite a bit to work on myself.

This sucks because I feel isolated again. As an introvert, I am comfortable being by myself and doing things. But I do need connection with others. I don’t feel like there is anyone I can talk to emotional things about. Because of the pandemic, it feels like all my friends are online. I’m limited what I can share with my family. Not everyone is safe to share emotional or personal things with. Or it’s a spectrum and maybe the things that are bothering are things they don’t have the professional training to help with. I kinda trust myself and working on this. It takes me a long time to trust people. By default I don’t trust people.

It comes to me that writing this is ironic because I’m being vulnerable as I write this.

I’m in insurance limbo again. While I’ll have health insurance with my job, I don’t know what the plan covers. I’ll likely have to pay for meds and appointments with the plan, because it’s a private plan. Worse than WA Applecare. Then I have to find a therapist who offers appointments after or before work, then, a therapist I click with. 🙄 Man I hate American healthcare.

Maybe not the final therapy appointment with my (previous 🙁) therapist, but this is an ending.


Betty

Betty the chicken died in the night on May 9th. She was 6 years old.

I wrote on Facebook:

Looks like Betty the chicken doesn’t have much longer. I had to pick her up from the run outside the coop, and place her inside for the night. The younger chickens were perched inside ready to sleep. Poor old girl couldn’t make it. I think she knows too from the look in her eyes.

I said goodbye that night. Told her she was a good chicken, and I liked living with her.

Betty would hang out with us outside whenever my mother or me would sit outside on the deck. Or the chickens would follow me inside as I took out the trash and recycling. Chickens are a nice companion. Rest in peace Betty.

Mom buried her in the dirt in the coop area. She asked if I wanted to be there, but I declined. I had my time with her the previous night.


Epilogue:

I’m looking forward to getting a haircut and makeover. My hair and beard are out of control 😅. It’ll feel good to get a professional cut.

I wonder if I over share with these posts… Or the right amount to find people to connect with?

My healing journey from now moves from the mental space to the physical space.

A Week complete!

Man outside waking stairs to a bridge

The first week at my new job!

This week I started a new job as a Processor at Walden Cannabis. Working in the legal weed industry is like a job in a warehouse where you process and package food in bulk. It can be repetitive work, but isn’t so bad wearing headphones and listening to stuff. I’ve been catching up on audiobooks, and listening to music. It’s minimum wage work ($16.67, which may sound like a lot but not really in Seattle.), but the company offers benefits once I hit 3 months. I also get paid based on how much I produce daily based on a unique point system. So far I’ve been keeping up with other coworkers. I’m a little anxious about future performance reviews because I haven’t had this before in the workplace, and college was so long ago. It’s been 15 months since my last 5 day a week full time job, so this new lifestyle is a dramatic change. From sitting at a desk staring at a computer screen, at home with cats, occasionally with mom working remote… To starting at weed, trimming each piece, and sorting as usable and grinding material, sitting in an (uncomfortable) office chair with coworkers.

The only problems with this job are tiny: The chairs we sit in are really uncomfortable, and the workspace is cramped. I believe, based on the faded sign out front, that it used to be a auto shop of some kind. Maybe two cars could fit in it bumper to bumper.

I like my coworkers, I like my job, and I have experience doing this work. I don’t know my long term career plans, but that’s okay. That isn’t anything new, and what’s important is that I have something stable finally. This company has been around since pot became recreational in WA state around 2012, and they have been expanding, so those are good long term signs. There are many possible futures opening up. I could stay here and learn on the side, rise up in the company, or go back to school for something else. It’s nice to have possible options. The goal for now is to be mindful and live day to day. To do my best these next three months and lock this great opportunity down.

Getting this job means I had to change my therapy appointments. My therapist has been great with this, fitting me in at the end of the day. It’s frustrating how a huge portion of available therapy appointments are during the day shift. Maybe this is different outside of the US. In the past, I was able to do therapy when I worked restaurant night shifts, or when I was unemployed. I can’t afford to take an hour off work on minimum wage. I could do appointments at work… But my current workspace is tiny. Even though everyone has headphones on, and a bluetooth boombox is on during work, I don’t think that would be enough privacy for therapy. I dunno.

One day at a time.

One step at a time. It’s been 14 months since the last full time job, 13 months since the pandemic began. Gotta remember to be patient. My goals of getting a car, and moving out are in progress. Maybe it’s time to slowly test the dating waters.

It feels good to have a full time job that has pleasant coworkers, and work Im familiar with. A set schedule. With this, I can build a foundation for the life I want. I’m so grateful for all of this.


For the first time in years, I’m excited about the future.

Life isn't sunshine and rainbows quote from Rocky VI
Love this classic speech from Rocky VI. I’d add that sometimes you need help, and that is healthy to do. I’m winning because I keep moving forward. Last year I was knocked down, and barely got up at count 9 of ten. (Boxing reference) A year later I’m back in the ring, ready to fight.

Song of the post: Harder, better, faster, stronger by Daft Punk

Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes!

Just like that… Life changes

Time to face the strange.

On Tuesday, I was finally able to schedule the shot. The shot the world has been waiting for. As we watched the world behind a mask. Wednesday, with little fuss I got the first dose of the Pfizer covid-19 vaccine. The whole process took a total of 25 minutes once I arrived at Lumen field. In fact, it took longer to travel there than getting the vaccine.

Time may change me

13+ months following the rules for survival. Masking up every time I go outside… Passing people on sidewalks as I would a commercial truck passing a car like when driving. Glaring at assholes with their masks not on. People became hazardous objects. Practicing steady breathing each time I had to go grocery shopping. Holding my breath, pressing against aisles to maintain space. Anxiety spiking each time some selfish local dumbass not being courteous in closed spaces. Socializing existing on the internet only. The number of times I saw friends a family… I can count on one hand After the Pandemic.

The pandemic isn’t over yet. Like when Biden was sworn in on January 20th, I felt a huge weight lifted off me. One more shot to go, and I’ll be safe. Finally, an ending.

Just gonna have to be a different man

A new beginning. Today I got a new job! Full time work as a cannabis processor with a company that looks great to work for. I had a really good vibe in the interview Monday. I’ve been in shock today. My life is finally moving forward. My hard work the past year is paying off. A year ago I was at rock bottom. 15 months since my last full time job.

Therapy was amazing on Thursday. My therapist and me got to celebrate all these achievements. All the hard work paying off. All the hours last year on zoom working through my problems. Showing up every week ready to do the work. Choosing to be vulnerable, honest, and open to feedback.

Talking about everything made me cry. I wept tears of joy. I’m choosing to appreciate these wonderful feelings instead of the future. Its been a very long time that I’ve felt tears of joy because of a tough goal. A hard earned win. It’s been a tough year. Living through 2020 by itself is an amazing thing.

It is possible to change for the better.

Gratitude

I’m only here because I didn’t give up on therapy. I gave it another shot because I asked for help. My needs weren’t being fulfilled, and I couldn’t do it alone anymore. I’m here because I used the past year to work on myself full time. Daily therapy zoom groups, weekly therapy appointments with homework, reading relevant books, youtube videos about relationships and psychology, Mark manson articles, subreddits, Spotify meditation/mindfulness/positive affirmations tracks, and blogging. All thanks to being laid off from Willie’s Reserve. Thanks unemployment! Thanks WA Applecare! Thanks Mom! Thank you blog readers! Thank you friends!

No more covid Limbo

I can finally feel safe to visit people. The world will return to normal. All we have to do is persist a little bit longer. The end of the pandemic is on its way. All thanks to the covid-19 vaccines.

Thank you, science!


P.S. This isn’t to say I’m not anxious or free from doubts. It’s just nice to appreciate good things happening.

It hasn’t hit me that I actually have a full time job on Monday. With this I can get a new car. With this I can move out on my own. With both the vaccine and the job, I can live life again. I wonder what I’ll be like a year from today?

Glimpse of a future

Had an in person interview yesterday

It was the longest interview I’ve ever had. About 80 minutes long. It was the first in person interview I’ve had since October last year. And as has become custom in the pandemic, wearing masks and distancing. I was there for an experienced joint roller job at another local cannabis company. This type of job is a classic productive warehouse/small business work culture.

One of my biggest weaknesses in life is selling myself. It’s not a natural thing for me. It’s completely artificial because the world demands you sell yourself. Because humans are in competition with each other to survive. This is an issue I struggle with in job hunting and dating. I feel I’ve learned enough over the years from google how to perform well in interviews, how to write your resume, and how to write a cover letter. I don’t enjoy doing these things. I’m not a people person. With interviews I want to get it over with as efficient as possible. I’ve mainly been an entry level worker, so a long interview isn’t necessary.

Edit: Had a friend remind me of important detail I forgot to mention. The company is successful because so many people working there are happy and been working there for years. I didn’t know that this friend works there! I guess I have been overthinking this.

Maybe this is a red flag. There were positive things my interviewer mentioned about my resume and cover letter, and my responses to his questions. He gave me helpful feedback on how my resume could be better, and specific things he liked. Something has been bothering me about this experience since.

I’m nervous because if I’m hired, I feel I really have to bring my best to work every day. I got the impression that speed and production were important values for my potential boss. It was a very thorough interview… Which put me a bit off because of the total pay/benefits for an entry level job. I understand you want productive, hard working, committed workers. 80 minutes for this level of job is weird. Hm.

I started to think: “Is this how it will be every day working here? Constantly challenged to be more, to be better?” “Maybe I’m not productive enough yet. Do I really want this lifestyle?” “Am I really the best person for this company?” “Is this impression from the interview be a reflection of working here?” Maybe I didn’t represent myself accurately and was people pleasing again.

Will this company, this job, match my values and potential future I want?

Being at a competitive possible cut throat place could be good for me. It feels like years since I felt like I had something to prove or want to compete. For a long time, I’ve been stuck in survival mode. My worry is that I won’t be able to keep up. I wonder if I would actually be able to keep up under close scrutiny. Maybe I could grow in ways I couldn’t elsewhere.

I dunno. Maybe this change in attitude came from my pessimism about capitalism. “Competition” for workers in my experience usually means “easily replaced”. He said the most of the employees have been there for years, and the ones that haven’t are new hires due to growth.

Do I really want to spend 40 hours a week here? If I’m wrong, I could lose unemployment. I felt I handled the interview well. Is this good anxiety grounded in reality? I hope my worries are a hold over of unhelpful learned patterns. Hope for the best, expect the worst… A survival mindset.

The take away no matter what happens when I find out late next week is: I’m ready for more in life. I’m ready to figure out my future.


The little things I have to give up to be working

Playing with my cats at anytime of the day.

Coco calling me to the living room to watch her play, or have me play with her.

Coco coming into my room, to my feet, looking up at me, dashing up me like a ramp, and standing on me to snuggle. Pressing against my face for lovies.

Visiting the kitties as they sleep in the sun mid day.

Eating whenever I feel hungry. (Though the consequences have been massive weight gain.)

Being able to sleep until rested.

Being able to cook whenever and whatever I want.


Song of the week: Under Star by Shocking Lemon. From the anime “Hajime no Ippo”

Thank you for reading this, if you enjoyed it, please give it a like, tell me what you think in the comments, and share on Facebook. Don’t forget to subscribe to my email list for updates!

Two roads

Two roads poem by Robert Frost, and made into a comic by ZenPencils.com
Source

When one door closes, another opens…

Next week, (and 2021… Next year?!) my current job with Cleen Craft (Link related work posts) ends on Monday the 4th, and on Tuesday the 5th, my new job as a political canvasser with Grassroots Team begins.

Grassroots.team is a political group that raises money for charities such as Amnesty international. I’ll be going door to door to raise money for that organization. Essentially, it’s a sales job. If I don’t “sell” enough monthly donations, I lose this job.

Because of the pandemic, I’ll be wearing a face-mask. My employer also mentioned two additional protection measures by offering a face shield and a 6 foot rolling mat to distance from people.

This will be the third time I’ve done this type of canvassing work. My past two experiences weren’t positive. The first time I didn’t get a donation, so I wasn’t hired on. Had the same problem the second time, and wasn’t hired on full time. I hope this goes well. If nothing else, it was something to do for a good cause. I’ll be able to be away from home, and be outside. This might be the hardest time in charity canvassing history to acquire more donors. So, its okay if it doesn’t work out.

Sales, and interacting with people isn’t a strength I have. This coming experience will be a good way to increase these skills. I have room to grow. This will be a good learning experience.

One major problem… I’m out of shape, and I gained 5 pounds last month due to comfort/stress eating carby food. 😅 I need to lose weight and get back in shape… 😅


Would you risk your life for a job?

That is what is at stake right now for unemployed people like me. Today I realized that an aspect I have to consider is: Is this job worth getting covid and possibly dying for?

My claim to receive benefits expired this week. Don’t get me wrong, I am so fortunate to have had this privilege this year. I don’t have to choose the risk of getting covid and dying, or basic survival. I already had one close call being exposed to coronavirus with my current employer… and everyone did everything right. So I guess that is why I have no problem with my new job. They’re honest and straight forward.

Today I heard back on a job I applied to on Indeed. But… It was temp to hire, required one weekend shift, only a couple days a week, and I was contacted through a recruiter. On top of this, the call ended early –Either I was hung up on or the other person lost connection– and the recruiter didn’t bother to call back or email me to see what happened. Yeah… I’m glad it ended soon. For a job with no guarantee of employment, paid only 15% more than minimum wage, and not knowing if I would have benefits… That was far too risky to work there. I was under the impression from the job description that I would be directly hired. Boy I’m glad I have this job with Grassroots.

Why can’t employers be honest?



Thank you for reading this, if you enjoyed it, please give it a like, tell me what you think in the comments, and share on Facebook. Don’t forget to subscribe to my email list for updates! 

Please wear a mask outside that covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands, clean your cell phone, and keep your physical distance (6 feet) from others to fight Covid-19! 

© Reilly Anderson. 2020. All rights reserved.

Dream Job

Where to buy on amazon

Icebreaker

Back in February, before covid, I hosted a board game night at my house with friends. It was a regular thing we did every two weeks or so where we would play table top board games such as cards against humanity, or Raiders of the North Sea. I bought this deck for a future game night. Long story short, we had one more in person game night before April. I’ve only seen them in person once since all year.

The Icebreaker card deck is 150 unique questions in 6 different color coded categories to “break the ice” and get to know people.

Example: I pick out a card at random and it says: “If you could write a book, what would it be about?”

Answer: I’ve attempted to write two different books before. Both fantasy. Neither is finished. One is an epic fantasy where an unwilling drug addict gets addictive magic powers. The other is about 3 old hens raised in the city that stop laying eggs and are sent to a retirement farm… Things go wrong and they have to adapt to “The real world”. Someday I want to finish both. One of my reasons to start blogging was to publish these stories one chapter at a time, while improving the other skills needed for modern novelists such as social media marketing, building an audience, creating a writing routine with a deadline, and improving my writing skills. I’m not going to promise anything about posting those stories yet… But as I write this post, it is something I want to go back to. I feel that it wouldn’t be worth it unless I had a complete first draft done. That way I could guarantee a certain number of posts. Both have structure issues. Professional grade novel writing is tough because the average word count for a fantasy novel is between 50,000 – 150,000 words. So a good rule of thumb is to double or triple the amount of words you will need to write after multiple draft revisions. Writing novels is full time work, ruthlessly competitive, and doesn’t pay well for years. Anyway one step at a time.

Going back and reading your old stuff feels like this:


What’s your dream job if money didn’t matter?

My dream job is money didn’t matter? Writing. Some combination of blogging and novel writing. My favorite genres are Fantasy and Sci-Fi. During this extended unemployment in the pandemic, I’ve been living this life. Writing first called to me around 2012 because I felt like I ran out of anime shows I wanted to watch. I wanted to write one myself. I attempted multiple times to learn to draw, but don’t have the patience to master it, so I focused on writing. For a while now, writing has been a passion hobby. I’m worried about doing it full time for money because it’s something I enjoy. I made the mistake of making an interest into a career — cooking in restaurants, and resenting it after year of doing it professionally. This is why I haven’t done many recipe blog posts because that stirs up those feelings.

Thanks to living a hermit lifestyle due to social anxiety and undiagnosed functional autism, I’ve watched 159.92 total days of anime. I don’t regret that time. I went to work, but didn’t have much of a social life. I’m okay with having a few good friends as an introvert. But those stretches of time were pretty unhealthy looking back. I did the best I could to cope with my mental health problems with the lack of consistent help from therapists. This year has been strange because I am comfortable in the antisocial hermit lifestyle, but I also don’t want to live that life anymore. Thank goodness that is in the past. At the very least, it seems an end date is approaching for the pandemic late next year.


Thank you for reading this, if you enjoyed it, please give it a like, tell me what you think in the comments, and share on Facebook. Don’t forget to subscribe to my email list for updates! 

Please wear a mask outside that covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands, clean your cell phone, and keep your physical distance (6 feet) from others to fight Covid-19! We got a long way to go before everyone is vaccinated.

© Reilly Anderson. 2020. All rights reserved.

7 ways seeking entry level/minimum wage jobs is crazy!

Source

“AKA Entry level jobs”

We need to talk. Let’s get one thing straight. A work relationship is a conditional relationship. Which means that this is an agreement to meet both of needs based on the conditions of the job, and mutual matching needs of the employee and employer. I am not your friend, though if everything goes well, maybe in the future after the employer-employee relationship is over. We are not family. Nobody growing up said that their “passion” is to work a minimum wage job. At best you are a transient stepping stone to a better career.

Fuck you for requiring a bachelors degree for entry level pay. I am fortunate at this time to not have any college debt because my first degree was a trade school for Culinary arts at a community college. I was lucky to get grants to pay for it. According to a Forbes article from 02/03/2020, the average student loan debt is: “for members of the Class of 2018 is $29,200, a 2% increase from the prior year, according to the Institute for College Access and Success.” It’s hard to pay so many bills when you start from behind, and that doesn’t include credit card debt, rent, or basic expenses. Its really hard to get by on minimum wage. In fact:

Every $1 increase in minimum wage decreases suicide rate by up to 6%

https://www.zmescience.com/science/minimum-wage-suicide-link-04233/

Modern Job post bullshit:

No, I don’t want to work a flexible schedule, or be open to working 7 days a week. This is code for split days off. Humans thrive on routine, not chaos. This affects my work production because I have no time to fully unwind. Because I’m exhausted from working, and can’t make plans. I want a life outside of work, and I can’t do that without a predictable schedule. So no, I will not commit to a place I have to be at 7 days a week on call, when you won’t respect your employees basic needs. This is a privilege only for my family, loved ones, and dear friends. No I won’t work holidays. I don’t care if you pay time and a half. I’ll never have that time back with my family and friends. The CEO isn’t working and is off.

Flexible.

Clo-open

No I won’t work a closing shift followed by an opening morning shift, otherwise known as “Clopen”. I used to work in the restaurant industry and did this for a bit, and never want to again. The fact that this is still legal is appalling. I might as well be working 16 hours straight. I’d rather work 16 hours and have a day off after than do this bullshit. I have to go home and somehow make due with maybe 6 hours of sleep after getting home at 2am… While you want me there at 9 am for the morning shift. of course I’ve never seen you work this shift boss. The only people who do this are those vulnerable immigrants who make these jobs possible. Who are desperate for any kind of work because American society won’t give them a fair chance at citizenship. They can’t complain about being paid under the table, or make less than minimum wage while doing the hardest jobs, being the hardest working people I have ever met. They can’t complain because they will be deported. That is an abusive relationship, and employers who further this are enabling this abuse for profit.

Source from reddit

On overtime…

No I don’t want to work overtime. Not for time and a half minimum wage pay. (I’ve done this once before when I had a good paying job as a truck driver and it was too much. I didn’t have a social life because work was so unsuitable) For many people at the bottom, this isn’t a choice because they need to pay bills. I have and want a life outside of work. Required overtime at entry level might as well mean “disposable, replaceable employees”. In some industries you are competing with unpaid interns from college.

Any “profit” made from the time and a half is negated because I’ll have to eat out to get a decent meal. Because I often don’t have time to plan ahead because of your last minute schedule change.


Fast paced? Fast pass.

Fast paced work environment and multitasking? Get a robot. Pass.

“Willing to assume additional responsibility” Sure as long as you are willing to pay additional money.

“Outgoing personality” This isn’t a customer service job. I know because I’m not suited for that type of work, and filtered those posts out on indeed. Stop burying this requirement halfway down the post. It’s dishonest at worst, and wasting everyone’s time at best. Everyone can’t do every job, that is being human. This is discrimination against introverts.

Team player

I am only a team player because it’s not a choice. I’m curious which “team player” from which sport you are referring to. If this is any of the big American professional sports, this means you will cut me from the team whenever I get too expensive while you draft a replacement for pennies. Glad to know you will be playing by the rules of a team owner billionaire. Meanwhile my “coaches” will be finding ways to screw the players over so they can maybe make more money.

I feel like the Center lineman in team play or groups.

Honestly employers need to stop putting this in job descriptions. What it translates to in real life is: “I as an employee will sacrifice my dignity and time so the business thrives while I am paid the same amount.” None of us are pro athletes. It’s get along with strangers or lose your job. I get along with people and work well with others. It’s insulting to have this pointed out so much in postings. Do people really not know this? 🤔


You are not my friend or family.

Management: you are not my friend or my family because this is a conditional relationship. We employees are here for the money and the benefits you provide to pay bills. This is an “at will” State. Which means you can fire employees if we mess up too much (valid) or you don’t like us. That’s it. Yeah, there is the rare unicorn who does this as a “passion”. They’d do it for free either way. It would be like paying a crackhead to get high every day. (Coworker friends are awesome!)

10k life insurance policy? Glad to know my death is only worth the value of a used car. Which the insurance company will be fighting 24/7 to not pay out because they too only care about money over humans. I’ll be missed at work until you find someone new to hire in a week.


“Customer service”

“With a commitment to delighting customers”. I didn’t realize prostitution had a job description. I know Amazon wants to take over the world, then take over Mars, but I didn’t realize their next move was into prostitution. Not that surprising based on how they treat their low level workers. I haven’t had a prostitute relationship before, and don’t really want to have one, but I know what to expect from them. Which is being honest communicators because they know it’s a transactional relationship.

See if you can guess what this Amazon job posting is for?

Actual phrases used in an amazon job:

  • High School or equivalent diploma
  • 1+ years experience in a retail or customer facing environment
  • Candidates must be at least 18 years of age
  • Amazon does not sponsor for immigration, including for H-1B, TN, and other non-immigrant visas, for this role.
  • **This is a flex time position, averaging 0-19 hours/week**
  • unique, physical extension of Amazon.com, unique in-store shopping experience where customers can discover the next product they’ll love and interact with our knowledgeable and engaging associate. (Nothing like the combination of a prostitute and MLM seller all in one. I doubt people who go to sex workers want to buy tupperware.)
  • You are flexible while working in an ambiguous environment with strong attention to detail, possess the ability to quickly prioritize tasks, collaborate, multi-task, (Flexible in an ambigous environment and collaborate/multitask with customers? ….So kinky sex in a back alley? LOL)
  • e a willingness and enjoy learning new things, with a commitment to delighting our customers.
  • help identify customer needs and exercise great judgement in handling requests or difficult customer interactions. (Must have a happy ending, and handle their “needs” while not having a pimp as security)
  • facilitates discovery of anything Amazon has to offer including device demonstrations in a simple and accessible way. (Aka experimenting with sexuality and sex toys… Amazon prime brand)
  • Follow standard processes, identify opportunities for improvements and escalate when appropriate in a timely manner (lol)
  • Handle cash and provide accurate change to customers.
  • Must be able to work flexible hours including nights, weekends and holidays
  • You are comfortable working in a physical environment. You have the ability to lift up to 49 pounds and be on your feet for shifts lasting up to 10 hours at a time with or without reasonable accommodation

My guess is this classic song by Chef from South Park:

The actual job post.

All that said, I want to contribute to the world.

If you’ve been living in a cave without tv, internet or contact with the world, (and lets be real, most of us have all of those things) The world sucks.

The world has plenty of problems to solve, and it needs all the help it can get.

I don’t feel entitled to not work, or to not contribute to society. This year has felt like a sports off-season, where a team dumps all it’s players to rebuild it’s roster. To use a common sports idiom to describe my off-season mental journey… I’m in the best (mental/mature) shape of my life. So it’s my responsibility to have the best season(year) ever. I’m working every day to be the best person I can be. (…Or so I tell myself to psych myself up. Gotta be positive too! Every bit counts.)

I did the best I could at that time, sometimes life works out a certain way. Thankfully I am at peace that I need to constantly be working on myself. That’s life.

All I want is a job I can reasonably do, with reasonable livable pay, with consistent hours and possible health benefits. Where I can make a positive impact on the world, while having a life outside of work. Where I enjoy going into work everyday because I have a healthy work environment.

Since I started working at age 22, I’ve never had the right combinations of job fit, pay, hours, consistency, and healthy work environment at one job. I know perfection isn’t possible. I just want a reasonable compromise so the needs of my employer and me are met. I thought I finally found that for my job at clēēn:craft. It sucks that there’s no work because our great product didn’t sell. On to the next thing.

Picard all over again. Source.

And don’t even get me started on writing jobs that “Pay for exposure”… While they own all rights to the content you produce for them in perpetuity. AKA FOREVER. 🙄

George Carlin may be dead, but his material is timeless:


Sigh. Back to looking for entry level work while I figure out my long term work plan… At least I have a place to live, food, water, clothing, family and friends. And that I’m getting help from a Career Counselor through my therapist. I find a job that I like… and I’m laid off because the product doesn’t sell. So I have that going for me…


Thank you for reading this, if you enjoyed it, please give it a like, tell me what you think in the comments, and share on Facebook. Don’t forget to subscribe to my email list for updates!

Please wear a mask outside that covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands, clean your cell phone, and keep your physical distance (6 feet) from others to fight Covid-19!


So much for ever working another entry or minimum wage jobs after this post >_> 😅🤦‍♂️

© Reilly Anderson. 2020. All rights reserved.

Waiting for results

Can't see the forest from the trees while I wait for my covid result...

Waiting for a Covid test result…

I got a covid test today.

It was simple as calling the doctor’s office yesterday, and getting an appointment.

I drove to the facility and parked at a designated parking spot. I arrived to nab the one open space. Three white tents with a taped piece of paper: call ***-***-**** to check-in.

I open the phone app on my phone, and enter the phone number. As it connects, I press speaker option. Ring, ring, ring, ring, ring… Nobody is picking up. The parking lot is about 80 percent full, and it’s 110pm, so they must be busy. The call ends.

I connect bluetooth and put on the Cloud of Unknowing.:

It’s a somber, soulful song which matches my worries. I don’t know how this test will turn out.

I call the number again, and check in. Now I have to wait.

I don’t have long to worry, as the man in the car in the parking spot to my right has a medical professional approach his car. The professional is wearing a white lab coat, N95 face mask, a plastic face shield, and disposable gloves.

I pause the music to observe.

The man in the car opens the door ajar, wearing a baby blue disposable mask. The professional explains the procedure to him.

Put the swab in each nostril and swab inside each for 15 seconds. Then you hand the swab back to her with your mask back on.

He finishes his test, hands the swab to her, and she tells him to expect results in 2-5 days depending on how busy the lab is. The man asks about work, and the professional says that the office will write a letter if requested for a positive result.

A moment later, the medical professional repeats the covid-19 test procedure with me. She ends with “Until you get your results, act like you have it.”

I drive home. Pondering my life. While it’s unlikely I have it, and there is a high chance I recover, I could die. I could die in the next two weeks.

I feel like I’ve barely become an average man. Never known romantic love, what it feels like to achieve a dream, never been independent, haven’t even had an amazing date… Haven’t had sex.

Is this really it? Is this really the best I could do in 34 years?

I’m trying to be positive about my life. But I’m not satisfied how it is. I hope my destiny isn’t to die from covid.


Thank you for reading this, if you enjoyed it, please give it a like, tell me what you think in the comments, and share on Facebook. Don’t forget to subscribe to my email list for updates! 

Please wear a mask outside that covers your mouth and nose, wash your hands, clean your cell phone, and keep your physical distance (6 feet) from others to fight Covid-19! 

© Reilly Anderson. 2020. All rights reserved.

Update 12-15-2020: Test results negative for me and everyone at work!

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