Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Work, Balance and Aneurysms

Seriously, who came up with the 8-hour workday? If I ever find that person they will be given a slow and tortuous death, courtesy of Stephanie. Workdays should be 5 hours, 7am-12pm. No lunch break of course, geez you gotta get some work done, you lazy bastard. You can get a lot done in 5 hours; and really how much time are you truly missing out on by shaving off those pesky 3 hours? I mean hey, you might miss out on prime internet surfing time, or the hour where you nod off and wake yourself up when your head hits your desk, or your 15 trips to the vending machine for snacks and other calorie filled goodies to keep you awake, but we all can do without that right?

Of course if we’re all working 7am-12pm there’s the time zone issue. Noon eastern time is 9am pacific time and let’s face it Californians don’t even stumble out of bed until about 9am. So, there would need to be a standard time that we all follow. I vote for mountain or central time, it’s in between eastern Time and pacific time. I’ve lived in the eastern time zone, and they could use a little more sleep over there, you westerners can share the wealth a little bit.

And all you people who LOVE work SO MUCH that you’ve wrapped your entire existence around it to the point where you don’t know what to do with yourself if you work less than 14 hours a day…get a hobby, or a family, or something. Yeah, yeah, I know, work IS your hobby; your co-workers/employees ARE your family. That’s just sad and I guarantee your job nor do your co-workers/employees feel the same about you. They’re really all just waiting for you to crack because you never give yourself a break. I mean really, if you die or leave or whatever, the company is still gonna go on, they’ll hire someone else no problem, and they’ll probably be just as good if not better than you. They’re not gonna hang your picture in the hall, or write songs about you, you were just some dude/gal that worked there at some point in time. Spend your time doing something meaningful like taking your kids to the park, THEY will remember you, and you’d rather have them remember you for the times when you took them to the park, not the times when you missed dinner with the family…AGAIN.

Yeah work’s important, it pays the bills. There’s nothing wrong with having a career, I have a career, but there is something wrong when you make it your entire world. I used to be that person who worked long days, tons of overtime, and what did that get me? Stress, headaches, a nice paycheck or two that ended up being devoted to many a happy hour at the nearest bar (which in the long run did me absolutely no good), an offer to fly out west for a threesome, hangovers, mood swings, you get the picture.

Alright, even if this post hasn’t made you realize that a job/career isn’t everything, and you’re just one of those people that is a die-hard workaholic, that’s fine, do what you gotta do, but don’t push your ideology’s and workaholic tendencies on those of us who really just want to put in our time and go home to our family. If we do our job and we do a good job, let it be. I WILL take my vacation, I WILL go home at 4pm when my shift is up, not 4:15, not 4:30, I will clock out and leave at 4, I WILL NOT come in on weekends unless it’s necessary, and I WILL take my full lunch. Yes, I realize unlike you who work from 6am-8pm, I’m not nearly as “dedicated” or “devoted” to this company; but I guarantee the CEO isn’t going to visit your grave, take care of your dog, or read bedtime stories to your kids after you die of a brain aneurysm.

Pardon my random outburst, but I needed to get this off my chest. Just because we choose not to work obscene hours or take on more than we know we can handle does not mean those that do are better than us, that we're slackers, or are less deserving than those who do work countless hours or take on every project they think they can complete. I come in on time, I leave on time, and I do a damn good job; don't make me feel less than who I am just because our point of view is different. I used to be where you are, I don't miss that. At the end of the day I feel content and happy, do you?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

School Online and the Ignorant People That Drive Me Insane

I'm interrupting this blogging break to vent about people's ignorance, including people who are close to me and sometimes are so completely retarded I wonder how it is that I know them and continue to claim them.

The other day I was asked if going to school online was hard. I was asked if it was hard to stay focused, and if it was possible to fail. Apparently, if you teach yourself, you cheat a lot, and therefore it's impossible to fail. Lately, I have also heard snarky comments from other various people about online school. With the popularity of online school growing I was taken back by these questions and comments. I couldn't believe that there were people who thought online school wasn't legit. People's ignorance never ceases to amaze me.

I remember being asked these same questions when I was in high school. I was home schooled from 7th-11th grade. I received a multitude of questions, such as:
Do you have friends?
Does your mom give you all the answers?
Do you have to do school from 7am-2:30pm, like a normal school day?
Do you even do schoolwork?

Um hello, have you met my mom? Yes we had a full school day, we were expected to get up at 6:30am and be ready to do school from 7am-2:30pm. We were not allowed to play outside, or in our rooms, or watch TV. We were expected to study. No my mom did not give us the answers to our tests. Yes we took tests. We also had to do eight book reports a year, and take two writing tests a year. We're talking like 10 page papers in 7th grade. It was not easy, by any stretch of the imagination; however, we had the ability to move at our own pace. If our Bible assignment for that day only took 15 minutes and our math assignment took three hours, that was what we did. I think that because of that, online school just seemed right for me.

During my first two years of college, sitting in a classroom listening to the professors talk about stuff I just read in the book was extremely annoying to me. I felt like I was wasting my time. Seriously, I just read all this stuff, you're not teaching me anything that I didn't just read, this is a waste of time. It got to the point where classroom time was day dream time, totally pointless. I finished at that college with my associates degree and had zero desire to go back. Then, about five years later I realized I had to go back if I was going to move up in my career. I had to work, there was no option there. I applied to the local university and got in. The price was obscene, $40,000 to finish my bachelor's and it was going to take me five years since I had to do night school. Just out of sheer curiosity I started looking at online programs. I wanted to go to a decent school, one with a campus, one that was accredited, one that was affordable. I found the university I'm going to now. The advisers gave me a list of classes that I would need to take and they were able to transfer most of my credits from my AA degree. I would have my bachelor's in 2.5 years for much less than $40k. For me it was a no-brainer. I can do school whenever I want, I don't have to listen to professors bore me to tears, I can still work, I'll finish in half the time for half the money, and there's no difference between this university and the local university that I was going to go to?!?! Hot damn, sign me up.

Yes, you can fail. In regards to cheating, the possibility of cheating is so high, the online classes are designed to be more difficult than the classes you sit in. For example, rarely do you get a class that takes tests, it's too easy to cheat. You have your book and the Internet right there. Most of my classes I've taken were writing intensive, meaning you wrote papers...A LOT. We're talking like three or four six-page papers in an eight week time frame. Most of our tests are essay's, and it's a lot of scenario based or mathematical based questions. If you do get a class with multiple choice tests they're more than likely trick questions designed to make you think or trip you up. It's just as difficult as a sit in class, if not harder because your time is cut. You take three months of work and assignments and cram them in eight weeks and you just cut an entire month out of your semester, and the workload doesn't get cut people, it stays the same.

When I first was looking at online school, I was afraid of how future employers would see my degree. Would they think that I cheated the whole time? Would they think that online school is a bunch of BS? Would they think that I took the easy route vs. the "real" route in regards to my education? I talked to a few people and did some research, apparently people don't care where you get your degree unless you work for the CIA, or NASA. As long as the school is accredited, and your GPA is decent, it doesn't matter if you went to Old Dominion University or Southern New Hampshire University. (Of course, there's a huge difference between Old Dominion and say Chapel Hill, Cornell or Harvard, but really I couldn't afford those big name universities anyways; and just so you know some of those big name universities offer distance aka online degrees.)

So for all you people who think online education is a crock of crap, I suggest you do your research, what you find may be very different than what you think.

How's that for an IIII'mmmmm baaaaaccckkkk post?