My aim is true.

22 December 2008

I meet people for lunch.

I must be growing up.


11 December 2008

Actual Work

For starters, my job is to make sure what people are donating to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints matches what the ward clerk says they donate and what the bank gets. I also need to research other things like why banks make adjustments to deposits because addition is wrong on the clerk's part. There are a myriad of reasons why I can keep my job.

On that note.

Today, I received an email asking why a ward (let's call it Smith Ward) was out of balance for 2006. I, having very little knowledge about the financial system, went and asked for help from a co-worker. We looked at the statement and found that, yes, the Smith Ward had extra money in 2006. But where did it come from? We looked at ward statements, reports, and correspondence between us and the ward for about an hour. We found that, yes, the ward was credited twice. The problem lies with the amount of time it took the clerk/bank to find the funds and deposit them and the fact that it happened over the end of a fiscal year. Here is the email I sent to them:

(Insert name here),

We found the issue.

The original deposit was in May 2006. The $(insert amount here) was lost. It was found later that year and the bank credited our account $(insert amount here) in December 2006 and we matched it off with a Teller Entry in February 2007. In the meantime, the ward noticed $(insert amount here) was missing and filed a lost funds report. We matched the May 2006 deposit with the lost funds case, which reimbursed the ward rounding up to the nearest dollar; therefore, crediting the ward twice. As far as we can tell, the ward didn't notice the original deposit was found and credited. This is why there was a duplication of funds. (Insert boss's name here) reversed a duplicate credit and that will show up on the December statement. If you have any questions you can give them a ring.

Senior Accounting Clerk
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
Bank Concentration
(insert contact info here)

Now, this made me feel very proud. I was excited to find out that I got to help this ward find out why they were out of balance.

20 November 2008

Do not procrastinate the day of your argument. Actual events that took place during the evening of 19 NOV 2008.

5:30 PM - Get to class and be super bored because I hate my teacher and will never take a class from her again.
7:05 PM - Leave class early to go get ready for a shindig put on by a friend of mine I haven't seen in about three years. Shower, hair done (this will come into play later).
8:30 PM - Arrive at shindig with Dr. Pepper in hand and none of the Mormon prudes drink it unitl the popular roommate with the Black Berry who answers his phone while someone (namley the guy that was invited because Roy sits next to him in Priesthood) is talking to him gets there and pours himself a snifter.
10:00 PM - Leave dreadful shindig being reminded that I need to get out of Utah and head home. Grab my computer.
10:07 PM - Arrive at the Coffee Garden because it's cheaper to write papers there than at Dee's.
10:55 PM - Get kicked out of the Coffee Garden because it's time for them to close. I'm only done with about half of my paper. Recall that there is another coffee shop on 400 South.
11:06 PM - Arrive at Coffee Break. Begin to finish my paper.
1:00 AM - Leave Coffee Break only for the sheer fact that I should've brought my computer into the coffee shop with me.
1:04 AM - Arrive at home. Get my computer out of my case, turn on my television and begin typing my paper while watching the South Park episode about the Emo kids.
1:30 AM - South Park episode ends and I spend five minutes trying to find some ambient noise by channel surfing.
1:35 AM - Figure out there isn't going to be anything on that will distract me enough to finish typing my paper so I turn on classical music that my sister put on my iPod before I went to Afghanistan.
2:48 AM - Finish typing my paper. Lenghth - eight pages.
2:49 AM - Set alarm clock for 6:00 AM.
2:50 AM - Remove contacts.
2:51 AM - Get into bed and suddenly realize the tea I'd been drinking all night had caffiene in it.
3:20 AM - (assumed) Fall asleep.
6:00 AM - Jolted out of my dream state by the beeping of my $80 a month clock and promptly hit snooze.
6:10 AM - Jolted out of my dream state by the beeping of my $80 a month clock and remember that I took a shower before the shindig and promptly hit snooze.
6:20 AM - Jolted out of my dream state by the beeping of my $80 a month clock and promptly hit snooze.
6:30 AM - Jolted out of my dream state by the bepping of my $80 a month clock and get out of bed.
6:32 AM - Normal bathroom things.
6:45 AM - Press skirt I wore the night before.
6:50 AM - Get dressed and eat some breakfast.
7:02 AM - Get into my car and head to the Ballpark Trax Station where I swear I saw Rich (my stupid ex-boyfriend).
7:17 AM - Get on the train.
7:30 AM - Arrive at the City Center Trax Station.
7:41 AM - Arrive at my desk with plenty of work to do today and regretting that I wore the same outfit I wore to two coffee shops last night. I smell like coffee.
8:04 AM - Wondering how long it will take for me to hit the wall.

21 October 2008

Jake of the Web

I didn't know there were so many ways to put your hands on your face.

15 October 2008

A Work of Fiction

Melissa woke up on a sunny, summer Saturday morning. It was early. She was going to do some service work with her local church group. She was always excited to do service because it helped her realize that there are others out there besides her. This Saturday was a different Saturday. One of her dear, long-time friends, Mitch, was coming home from more than a year and a half of service with the Peace Corps. Melissa was captivated by his energy. There was a glow about him. She thought he was never thinking of himself. This was actually artificial and she refused to see its artificiality. While he was in the Peace Corps they corresponded through the mail. She thought this was very different because there is time, energy, and money involved in putting a letter in the mail. It seemed more personal but little did she know 18 months of ink and rising stamp prices would mean nothing to Mitch.

In anticipation of seeing Mitch again, Melissa went to the local record store and purchased an album for him to enjoy. She figured he’d been out of civilization for a while and he needed to be caught up on some of the current sounds. There was a particular band that dropped an album just in time for summer. Some of the current singles have completely blown Melissa’s mind. Besides, the album cover was a piece of art by the Romantic artist Eugene Delacroix. She figured she couldn’t go wrong.

Mitch was giving a lecture on his experience the next day. Melissa went with gift in hand. He did very well. His time in the Peace Corps, she thought, really mellowed him out. She went forward to give him his gift. She shook his hand and he invited her to a champagne brunch with him and his family. Unfortunately, Melissa already had plans for the day but told him she could pop by later that evening.

She knocked at his door at around 7:00 PM. He was dressed in extremely casual clothing, even pajamas. Melissa wished she would’ve changed from her business casual but she had no choice. She sat on the couch with him and asked for stories. He talked about all the people he worked with and he mentioned all his partners he had while in the Peace Corps. As Mitch flipped through pictures on his digital camera he pointed out to Melissa who everyone was and the story behind each particular picture. She was very impressed with all the experiences he had. The next thing she knew it was 9:30. As Mitch was walking her to the front door he asked her if she would like to go see a popular acoustic guitar player later that summer. She agreed. How could she not? She was feeling a connection with Mitch and this connection was made even further when he hugged her and didn’t let her go.

The following weeks were filled with long phone conversations and multiple text messages. Within this correspondence Melissa and Mitch discussed goals, religious beliefs, schooling, discipline styles, politics, and much, much more. These conversations culminated with an invitation put to Melissa to meet Mitch’s family. Not just a Saturday night with cocktails and sarcastic conversation. This involved a weekend with the extended family. In hindsight, Melissa read too much into it. She also knew she was overanalyzing it. She’s a woman, after all.

After the marathon that was Mitch’s family, Melissa decided to invite him to meet her family. She sensed a bit of reluctance yet he obliged. She felt he was just trying to return the favor, pay it forward. Following a rare rib steak, steamed asparagus, and three glasses of Chardonnay they bid farewell to Melissa’s family and he took her home. She knew what was coming: the never ending hug. Melissa liked being close to Mitch. She felt safe with him. Everyone in their family was turning a blind eye to who they felt Mitch really was. Melissa felt she could look past the imperfections that her brother and sister saw in him; namely the attitude of superiority Melissa’s sister felt he had. After his 18 month absence, Melissa recognized that her sister was right. Her first impression after his speech was dead wrong. The Peace Corps didn’t mellow him out at all.

Somewhere along the line there was a voicemail left on Melissa’s cell phone letting her know that a band in her top five was touring with the popular acoustic guitar player. This made her even happier. Being able to see one of her favorite bands was a small price to pay.

Throughout the weeks between the marathon weekend with Mitch’s family and the acoustic guitar show, Melissa’s communication with Mitch became fewer and farther between. In fact, there was no communication between them until the night before the acoustic guitar show. She wasn’t sure how to look at this. She felt his artificial glow of putting others first became secondary.

One day Melissa received a text message. The gist was: Busy…Family…School…let’s get together sometime. The lyrics from Standard Lines by Dashboard Confessional came into Melissa’s head: I’ve been meaning to call you I’ve just been so busy, we’ll catch up soon, let’s make it a point to. This pretty much solidified how Melissa felt toward Mitch. She was set aside and she had no idea why. All she needed was an explanation.

Enter the reason Melissa went on the back burner. Rachel was apparently shiner than Melissa and far easier to distract. Rachel and Mitch’s off the wall personalities seemed to compliment one another. Add the fact that both enjoy filming themselves being loud at restaurants during Sunday brunch while forgetting about everyone else around them that just wanted to go out for a quiet meal, dripping distain for casual swears and anyone that isn’t Republican, and blaming their personality quarks on the color of their hair (i.e. “I’m allowed to be loud and annoying in public places because I have red hair, deal with it.”).

So why didn’t Melissa just tell Mitch to take Rachel? Melissa did some math. The ticket was $29.50 with an $8.25 convenience fee. She could tell Mitch to take Rachel or she could go see her third most favorite band in the whole world who was touring along with the acoustic guitar guy for free. In short, she used him and in no way did she feel raw about it.

After the show Mitch took Melissa back to her apartment, which was in the second most liberal area of the city. They started their customary long hug. Much to Mitch’s surprise Melissa pulled away after about seven and a half seconds. She could tell he wasn’t ready to let go. It was their routine to have a long embrace but because Melissa felt after the show she was only wasting her and Mitch’s time by prolonging the inevitable. She would allow him to get back to Rachel, who in no doubt was watching television at Mitch’s apartment waiting for him to come home so she could nag him about taking someone other than her to the acoustic guitar guy’s concert. Melissa pointed Mitch to the door using the excuse of I have work and hair washing in the morning.

This was the last time she saw or communicated with Mitch and for what purpose, to finish off the summer seeing one of her favorite bands for free? No. She learned what she needed to learn from Mitch, namely not giving up her love of left politics and casual swears. She also learned that in order to feel complete all she needed was an explanation, which she never got. Then with an Emeril-like BAM “Mitch is in a relationship with Rachel.” Forever in Melissa’s book Mitch will be labeled as one of those guys that she finds repellant.

03 October 2008

A Response

I’ve taken to reading blogs of people I don’t know. Well, one blog in particular. I don’t know this person but my sister’s husband went to high school with this lady. I know so much about this person (minus the regularity of her bowel) that I could walk up to her at her high school reunion and I could carry on a conversation with her about her daughter who was blessed in a miniature version of her mother’s wedding dress, how her husband is a professional golfer (I could Google his name and find his statistics), what kind of car she drives, and how much she enjoyed her last girl’s night out at Café Rio.

I was reading a post about Spencer’s new job as a math grader. There was an anonymous comment left there. Here is the text:

You might want to be careful what you post. Not everybody has the mathematical background that you currently have. To judge somebody as "stupid" is inconsiderate. Maybe the student doesn’t understand the concept and here you sit judging their knowledge. You have no right to call somebody stupid when you have no clue of their background in learning. You have no right to judge their competency in the subject when you have no clue the circumstances in their life at the moment. With the dreams and aspirations you have, you have an obligation to treat students with respect regardless of their intellect. How dare you judge the students based only on the assignments you see, and not the struggles in their life that you do not understand.

It seems to me that Anonymous’ opinion is coming from a very deep place inside. This is not where the issue lies with me. With me, the issue lies in the following text that was left by Burntacular after Anonymous poured their opinion into the void that is the internet:

Who the heck is sitting on their high horse reading your blog. If I remember correctly this is your blog right? If they have an opinion they should have their own blog!! Get a life you self righteous "stupid" person!

We are all entitled to our own opinions. That is our God given right (hell, I’m voting for Obama much to the chagrin to my mother and many other Mormon friends of mine). Anonymous has an opinion about the treatment of people we don’t know and will probably never meet. It looks like Burntacular has an opinion about the opinion of Anonymous. Now, since we are all human beings and are allowed to make choices and formulate our own views on everything is there some way we could get to a common ground on this whole “stupid” “high horse” “self righteous” issue? Senator Biden and Governor Palin did agree on homosexual marriage and Israel last night. So if a Democrat and a Republican can agree on national and international issues what’s keeping people from finding the same page on this?

Oh, it’s all in print. There is no tone in print.

17 September 2008

The Life and Times of Steve, pt. 2, later that evening

I wrapped the Hot Shot in a plastic bag as to protect my belongings on my way home. In the car I thought about all the fun times I had with Steve.

(open thought cloud)

I remember looking up, every morning and every evening to see if Steve was in his home. I remember wondering if one day Steve would be hanging from his delicate yet strong web making material when I opened my door to go to work. I remember the dream I had of Steve. I remember watching Steve climb up his web in pursuit of dinner.

(close thought cloud)

I knew what had to be done. I walked into my apartment, I set my bag down, and I hooked up my new computer. I was totally engrossed in the awesomeness that was my new computer and speakers and wireless mouse that I almost forgot about the task at hand: I must kill Steve.

With Hot Shot in hand I steped out of my door eying Steve. He no doubt saw the red can in my hand and probably in his spider mind shrunk with fear. I was standing to the side of my door when I held up the can and sprayed. I could tell Steve was in agony. He retreated into the depth of his spider web and I continued to spray. Then, I saw that he was a ball of spider death.

Another sigh of relief and I went into my apartment.

Little did I know that by the next afternoon Steve would be resurrected.