The Commander and The Architect

I’ve been thinking about writing this post for a long time.  I have a friend at work.  A friend with whom I sometimes get very angry and wonder why we’re friends in the first damn place, but still a friend.

I watch her lash out at everyone about situations that are beyond her control.  I see the angst when other colleagues purposely needle her because they know every single button to push.  She’ll come to my desk, get advice from me, and turn around and fall back into the same traps.

Welcome to the friendship of the ENTJ and the INTJ: The Commander and the Architect.  It’s complicated.

For the most part, I agree with her grievances.  Our office could be so much more efficient and functional.  She will keep pushing and come hell or high water, she will find a way to get her vision realized. Why? Because that is what a commander does!  You lead.  You step up to the challenge.  You solve the problems.  Feelings be damned, this is business.

And that’s where the messy part comes in: feelings. Most managers don’t want to hear there are areas under their control that need improvement.  Most colleagues don’t want to hear how they are potentially making things difficult in the office.  It hurts their egos and their feelings.  Feelings are usually the weak spot of an xNTJ’s existence.  We’re so damned blunt and analytical that we forget that some things that appears to us as standard problems to be solved involve a lot of emotion to other people.

Knowing my friend’s MBTI makes it easier for me to calm down and let go of my anger when we do come into conflict.  We both want the same thing: an efficient work environment.  However, our methodologies and expectations are vastly different.  I may want a certain work environment, but I know that I may not get it.  So I do my best to work with the situations I’m given.  I build my little work cocoon and go about my business.  If I tell you something is broken, if you choose not to fix it, that’s not my problem.  An ENTJ just can’t get to that level of detachment and INTJ just cannot get riled up over things that they realistically cannot change.  So, boom! Fireworks!

 

 

 

 

This sums up my week perfectly

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Trying to Stick Me for My Papers

“Thank you for your patience.  You’ll be assisted by the next available representative.”   I’ve been hearing this phrase on repeat for the past 30 minutes.  I log in to my bank account to pay bills and what do I see?  Four fraudulent charges to my account.  I’ve had a low-grade migraine all day. Commuting home and then getting home from the grocery store took forever.   Now I discover missing money from my damn checking account.

What the fuck, man? I have every alert possible that my bank allows and these charges still got through.   A woman is displeased.

I finally got through to my bank and they crediting the money back to me, disabling my debit card, and sending me a new card.

Ugh…the price of online banking is eternal vigilance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Smelly Pocket of Air

Hello Readers,

There is an excellent scene in the cartoon series Futurama where Robot Mafia henchman Joey Mousepad visits the Planet Express office and accidentally punches Dr. Zoidberg (notoriously malodorous), whom has temporarily been made invisible.  As Joey leaves the office, he tells them to watch out as there is “a smelly pocket of air over there.”

That is how I felt at the gym a few days ago.   Like I previously wrote, the gym etiquette is desperately lacking these days.  I thought people sitting on the machines for-fucking-ever or not wiping down the equipment were the worst crimes.   Oh, how horribly mistaken I was.

When you leave a machine or the weight area, your damn scent shouldn’t linger.   THAT IS INEXCUSABLE!!! Wear fresh clothes to the gym and for God’s sake, people, properly bathe and exfoliate. Your sweat shouldn’t smell like the funk of forty thousand years!

Get it together, dammit.

Real Talk, You need to be voting

Okay, VA and MD democrats.  We’re about to have a “come to Jesus” meeting.  Please explain why Senator Warner is fighting hard for his US senate seat and Anthony Brown is not the Governor of MD.
*crickets*
“I was too busy to vote.”  “I forgot that it was election day.” “I thought so-and-so had the win on lock.”
You lazy trollops.  Do you know what republicans do come hell or high water?  They vote.  In primaries, in general elections, and presidential elections; they vote.
What do some of y’all do?  Continue to vote in presidential elections only.  I’ve said this to people so many times: The president is not a one-man band.   Congress, the Supreme Court, and the President make up three coequal branches of government with separate powers and checks and balances.
Congress has the power of the purse and therefore a lot more control over your daily life than any president ever will.  Republicans know this and vote accordingly.  Democrats seem blind to this fact and decide to stay home because “the president isn’t doing what I want.”
Even worse, I see talking heads like Tavis Smiley telling black voters to stay home because the president has done nothing for black people.  He knows good damn and well the history of American voting rights and that is what he tells people.  What is his purpose?
And that leads me to what is truly upsetting me.  The right to vote is precarious.  It can be taken away.  I don’t care who you vote for, but vote dammit.
It used to be that only the wealthy, landed male gentry could vote throughout the ages.  Do not think for one minute that some people don’t want to return to those days.
Non-white men got the right in 1870 and women only got the right in 1920.  That’s only a few generations ago.  America still had to pass the Voting Rights Act in 1965 to stop backwards bumpkin states from disenfranchising voters.  That was only 49 years ago.  That is nothing on the grand scale of human civilization.
People have fought and died for the right to have a voice in their government and every election I see people squander their opportunity to vote as if every citizen voting has always existed.
I implore you.  Check out the history of suffrage. Check out your candidates.  Look at their voting records, read news articles about them for multiple sources.  Stop sitting there wasting your hard-earned right to vote.
Because if I end up in some The Handmaid’s Tale or 1984 type of dystopia, I’m busting your non-voting ass before they drag me away for being a dissident.

Black people are tired of having their humanity dismissed

I’m tired.  I never thought that I’d be this tired at 32 years old.  However, being a black woman in America, I’ve been on high alert for as long as I can remember and that cannot be good for my cortisol level.

If you haven’t been living under a rock, I’m sure that you’ve heard all about the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO.

Some people think that racism is dead.  They are being deliberately obtuse.

Other people think that racism still exists, but it isn’t that bad because it doesn’t look like the horrible pictures and documentaries from history class.  They also have the brass ones to say that minorities bring it upon ourselves because we continue to think that we are oppressed.

Both of these groups of people can eat shit and live.

Because being black in America is being subjected to countless macro- and micro-aggressions daily since childhood.

  • Nearly all images/portrayal of my people in American media are negative or rooted in gross stereotypes. The Cosby Show was a fluke.  The average white American is more likely to treat me as a potential welfare recipient than as the next Claire Huxtable.  Imagine growing up in a country where your race was associated with all things wrong and dysfunctional.
  • Having to be twice as good to get the half (if any) the accolades.  Holla if you hear me and you got this talk from your parents and grandparents.  I could cure all cancers tomorrow, you know would I get called in some parts of America? A nigger.
  • Having to be always mindful how our speech and body language can be construed as threatening when we are just living.  I remember my ex telling me how he has always been very cautious of his movements or having too much bass in his voice when expressing himself because he could end up in jail or worse because of the automatic negative connotations of black men and their masculinity.  And then I thought about how many of my male relatives had said the same thing. Ronan Farrow just did an interview where he said his mother had to teach his black adopted brother that he couldn’t do certain things.
  • Our credentials are constantly questioned.  We get told that we only got into college because we’re black.  We got that job because we’re black.  It’s rarely acknowledged that we worked hard or that we were the best candidate.  “Are you sure you can afford to shop here? You’re black, you know.”  Let me follow you in the store from aisle to aisle insuring that you don’t steal anything. “Well Obama should show his birth certificate.”  I wish a motherfucker would ask to see my Goddamned birth certificate when I’ve been vetted by NSA, CIA, DOD, and every other damn agency in this country. Since he has the nuclear launch codes, bitch, he’s an American.
  • Being treated as a special unicorn when you’re just like countless other black people.  “You’re not ghetto like other black people.  You’re the whitest black girl/guy I know. ” White people…these are not compliments.
  • Being treated as a magical negro.  I may be a great listener and I have a sympathetic face, but I’m not your mammy and random black men are not your Uncle Ben. We don’t give a hot damn about your problems.  We have our own problems.  Find someone else to tell you that “You is kind.  You is good.  You is important.”
  • Being treated as invisible or interchangeable.  You could have said excuse me instead of practically running me over with your shopping cart.  Oh so you see me in a meeting and you burst right in and talk over me and only stop to apologize when someone calls you out on it. Okay. I’m 100% certain of my name, random colleague.  Repeating the name of another black person like I have a hearing difficulty is not going to change that.  You want the other black lady that sits on the floor that’s taller and several shades different from me.

I could go on all night but there’s a documentary waiting for me for to watch.  The point that I’m trying to make here is that from birth to death to after-life, we are treated with disregard and then people have the nerve to say that we’re the aggressive ones.  No, we’re the tired ones.  We’re tired of asking our fellow citizens to left their masks of privilege to see how dangerous and stressful systematic dismissal of our humanity is.

I gave a short list of the crap that we deal with in America.  Yet, we’re supposed to put on a happy face and pretend that we’re not mentally/physically hurt by all of this foolishness.

My friend Brownie always says that black people suffer from PTSD.  I’m starting to believe her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real Talk with Mocha Pika: The Purge: Anarchy

So I’m on the arc trainer at the gym today and lo and behold I see a trailer for the sequel to the Purge. Non-spoiler alert: The Purge is set in a dystopian future America where for 1 night a year, all crime is legal.

So “naturally”, law-abiding citizens devolve into a bunch of thugs, rapists, and murderers. Really? Just like that?

The Thin Blue Line most be thinnest motherfucking line around if all it takes is pen stroke for people to become wild beasts in the streets.

Why are people out there wilding out in the worst possible ways during the so-called “purge”?  Real talk, I would be out at the malls crossing off some much wanted items off my wish list and getting my Christmas shopping completed.  See, I think of others.

I guess images of happy Americans rejoicing in the glory of $free.99 doth not a movie make.  America’s future must be gritty, ultra-violent, and unpleasant.  Well, damn.  Who pissed in the screenwriter’s bowl of Cheerios?

Are there people right now sitting at home thinking “I would murk Bob, but you know, laws and stuff”? Deep down, I know there are people like that and it’s disturbing.  So now you have to wonder: how many people are being good because they want to be? How many people are being good only because it is expected by the social contract?

 

 

 

 

 

 

When Bad Things Happen to Good People

Sadly, one of my dear friends, was railroaded by some TBMs and was let go from her position.  Despite it all, she never lost her faith nor her good spirits.  She actually said “I’m going to pray for them.”   She’s such a doll.  She went to the office each day and did a great job despite it all.  I applaud her.

Honestly, when I see jerks mistreating people, I cannot bring myself to say that I’m going to pray for them.  I’m incapable of it.  I don’t know if it is an INTJ thing or what, but if you go around fucking with people just because you can, I feel that you deserve scorn, not my prayers.  I’m just not that great of a person in this regard.   I’ve had so many friends and family tell me “I hope to never be on your bad side.”

This is how feel about jerks:

 

Okay, I’m only 30% serious about that.  I don’t actively wish for bad things to happen to bad people, but I cannot say that I won’t cackle like a mad scientist when karma bites them in the ass.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Cubicle Farm is a Battlefield: The Introvert and the TBMs

Why oh why, do Americans have to spend so much time in the workplace?  We’re one of the hardest working countries in the Developed World and we receive and use the least amount of vacation days.

In my last post about office life, I lamented about the loss of physical and personal boundaries and the energy vampires, Overly familiar Fred and Habitual line-stepper Harriet, that roam the cubicle farm looking for fresh introverts to feed off.  Once you spot the energy vampires, you can pretty much come up with a plan to avoid them or severely limit contact.

However, there is much more sinister creature out there in the cubicle farmlands of America: That Bitch Molly.   TBMs just come to work to make life miserable for people.  Nothing you will do or say will ever be right in a TBM’s eyes because their hostility amps are always on 11.  They approach every single situation as if you are their mortal enemy and you must be destroyed.  I’ve found the majority of the time, TBMs zero in and mistreat people to demonstrate their power and/or feel better about their own insecurities.

Example:
TBM: Peter, what time is it?
Peter: It’s noon.
TBM: <looks down and double checks his/her watch> Actually, it’s 12:01 and 48 seconds.  <walks off in a huff and proceeds to tell the whole office how Peter purposely gave him/her the wrong time>
Peter:

TBMs would annoying to any damn body, but they are soul-crushing to introverts. TBMs carry so much negative energy and they try damnedest to transfer that negativity on to you.  As introverts, we are very empathetic such that we can’t help but to take TBMs’ foolywang personally and start internalizing their malicious vibes.

It defies logic for someone to behave in such a manner.  Why would you come to work, or any place else for that matter, and be such a bitch for no damn reason? INFPs, INTPs, and INFJs are more sensitive to this behavior.  All of my friends that fall under these personality groups have really been catching hell this month from TBMs in their offices.

At my last job, I actually let TBMs get to me the point where I was complaining every day to my friends and having panic attacks.  Now I’m like:

But seriously, if TBMs are your colleagues, tell them to calm their tits.  If the TBMs are in management, now you have problems.  You can only adjust your personality, bite your tongue, and chafe under managerial TBMs for so long.  If you find yourself thinking how wonderful it would be if your TBM fell and broke a leg; it’s time to move on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Fine Art of Looking Down, but Talking Up

Le sigh…there will come a point in your life when you’ll be having a conversation with someone and he/she will do or say something so amazingly annoying that you will want to dead-stop speaking to him/her and walk away.

Unfortunately, that’s not how life works.   Sometimes, you must endure the conversation.  Maybe it’s a relative that is talking to you and you have to keep the family peace.  It may be a coworker being the thorn in your side and you are not independently wealthy and you need your job.

Enter Stage Left: Looking down, but talking up.

Your head is angled downward by at least 45 degrees.  You may cock your head to the side. Your eyes aren’t quite closed all the way.  Your voice might drop almost a full octave, but there is definite force behind your words and they will reach your intended audience.  That’s the best way that I can describe it; but much like pornography, you know it when you see it.

Now one doesn’t intend to start looking down, but talking up; but it happens.  It’s almost like a reflex to protect yourself.

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