As Mufasa told Simba in 'The Lion King', '...we all exist in a delicate balance....' That right there is my work life in a nutshell. It's a very fine, delicate balance, calibrated practically to the nanosecond and the smallest thing that has not been accounted for in the schedule throws thing into such a disarray that my mental organization can best be described by the water spout-cow-tornado scene from 'Twister'. When the cows start flying, you know that things are bad. (We won't even discuss the state of my office. I'm surprised the Fire Marshal hasn't shut me down yet.) (That may be a thinly veiled plea for help but I'll never tell.) (Parenthetical abuses ahoy!)
What was before an uneasy dance with potential disaster has morphed full on to a daily WWE RAW or Thunderdome adventure of mind- and taste bud-boggling proportions. To wit:
7:15 - 7:30 AM: Attempt to leave house for the day with preschooler, toddler, accompanying book bags, lunches, jackets, toys, books, video games etc. Oh who am I kidding; if we make it out the door before 7:25 I count it as a major victory.
7:55 AM: Arrive at school. Drop Noah off at his classroom, beg Noelle to go potty as she hasn't gone potty yet this morning OMGWTFBBQ, talk him out of the color game, tell Noelle two to three times to put the toys away FORTHELUVAGOD. Try to remove Noah from leg; rue leaving WD-40 at home. Finally escape, play rousing game of hide-and-seek with Noelle in her classroom because 'find me' games are exactly what Mommy wants to play when she is running late.
8:05 - 8:15 AM: Leave school for work; hope that I can make the left turn in under five minutes.
8:10 - 8:20 AM: Arrive at work, go to trailer (klassy!) to taste and gather technical follow-ups.
8:30 AM: Make it to desk, see voicemail light on, curse creatively, scan email for crises....oh look, three so far today. Wunderbar. Debate getting coffee before....
8:45 AM: Daily stand-up Quality meeting. No coffee.
9:00 AM: Daily Plant Meeting. Still no coffee, presenter's head resembling giant coffee cup and/or danish. Start muttering to self and rocking. Try not to snort at mind-blowing fuck-ups. Settle for gentle, disbelieving head shake.
9:30 AM: GET COFFEE
9:32 AM: Run various reports, reply to emails, take samples to R&D as I'm really just a glorified gofer, get into groove until...
10:00 AM: Staff training. Do not refill coffee
10:15 AM: Seriously regret not refilling coffee
10:30 AM: COFFEE *weeps for relief*
10:32 AM - 12:30 PM: pull (more) samples, reject things, curse online radio station for not playing Top 40 and being forced to endure classic rock.
12:30 - 1:00 PM: Get the hell out of the building. Deep, cleansing breaths. Walk rapidly around the park alternately composing witty and insightful blog posts and pointed, insightful responses to general idiocies encountered.
1:00 - 1:30 PM: Eat lunch, escape reality catching up on blog reading. Try not to snarf beverage. Fail miserably.
1:30 - 2:00 PM: Assemble projects for afternoon, get started on set ups until...Crap!
2:00 PM: Second shift team meeting
2:30 PM: Begin project work, temperature of trailer approaches that of a sauna thereby ensuring the ultimate aromatic experience for my children in three hours.
4:30 PM: Reenter office, scatter technicians with smell, attempt to do paperwork. Thwarted. Repeatedly.
5:00 PM: Leave office, get kids, leave smelly trail of destruction in my wake.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
For extra joy on Fridays, I pencil in at least two crises starting at 3:15. It's our own special brand of torture.
Thankfully God invented weekends for catching up.