Posts Tagged 'conspiracy'

We Interrupt this Series

Yes, I have an update on my progress with MediFast.  Yes, the news is good.  However, there are more pressing issues weighing on my mind now, and I’ve gotta release it before I go stark, raving mad.

WHAT IS IT ABOUT EXCEL?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

My husband thinks Excel’s the greatest thing since sliced bread.  When the proverbial gun is put to my head (that’s what it takes for me to use the damn thing; I never go willingly), I’d like to put Excel through the bread slicer.

I’ve tried for 15 years to make heads or tails of Excel.  I can’t.  It makes absolutely no sense to me whatsoever.  Perhaps twice in my lifetime, I have asked Hubby to create a spreadsheet for me.  No matter how complex and demanding my request is, in 10 minutes, he has a spreadsheet that does exactly what I want it to do, tailored to my PhD level of expertise. (Push here, Dummy!)

Today was a “gun to my head” day.  I witnessed something at work today that required an official report be submitted.  Guess what?  The report was a pre-formed Excel document–exactly the wrong format for something comprised only of words!  When I ask Hubby for Excel, it’s because I need to crunch numbers.  When the report is comprised solely of words (okay, you have to use numbers to indicate the time of day, but come on!), wouldn’t common sense dictate using a program named…oh, I don’t know…perhaps…”WORD“?!?

Oops, I almost forgot:  one Tenet of Truth learned earlier this week:

Why is it called “common sense” when it is all too rare?

Well, it turns out that if you access the incident report through the intranet, only one person on the premises can use it at a time; everyone else is locked out.  There were several unrelated “train wrecks” at work today; at least 5 people I know of needed to submit these forms for one reason or another.   So I started composing my report on a Word document with the intention of copying and pasting it onto the official report when it was my turn.

Finally, my turn came, and I copied, pasted, and…the whole text (about 3/4 page) wound up crammed onto one line of the Excel report document.  I called my boss (one of the authorized tech support people in my building) and asked what I should do.  He said “don’t worry about it; when you print it, it’ll come out right.”  Then I had all the info entered and spell-checked, and (based on past experience and the fact that the printer is a good 1/4 mile walk away), I did a “print preview.”  Guess what?  EVERYTHING WAS CRAMMED ON ONE LINE!!!

Well, that’s not really true.  Only the first line and the top half of the letters on the second line appeared.  The remainder of my report was covered up with blank lines on the form!   AAAARGH!  I start calling around, looking for a nearby co-worker who knows something about Excel other than how to cuss at it.  The one person who did was another co-worker trying to fill out the same report.  She was as frustrated as I.

All told, 3/5 of the staff in our department could not carry out a single professional duty the entire afternoon because of the requirement to have this TPS POS Excel document signed, sealed and delivered by the end of the day.  Finally, another intrepid co-worker in my department who was dealing with the same intransigent report form found a back door.  Apparently, the company’s internal home page not only had a link to the form of which none of us were aware, but it had a data-entry page comprised of simple, easy to use text boxes!  You just typed in your info in the appropriate boxes, clicked “enter,” and Presto Change-o!  The blinkin’ Excel report was done perfectly and ready for printing.

The frustrations of the day were legion.  We had to undergo a month of OJT before we could put in our first day on our real job, yet none of us ever knew that this “back door” existed.  Actually, what we were taught to use was the back door complete with creaky hinges, peeling paint, and rusty, torn screens.  What we weren’t told about was the ultra-modern chrome and glass front entry complete with automatic door opener.

All of us said at one time or another “If this had been a Word document, I’d have been done in (15-30-45) minutes.”  Doing this Excel aberration took all of us, working independently over three hours, in which we all had to get someone else to take on our normal duties.  An extremely inefficient use of company time.

I had scheduled a doctor’s appointment for this afternoon at an office 10 minutes away from where I work.  My normal end of the day is 30 minutes before the time I’d set for my appointment–no problem, right?  WRONG!!!  By the time I’d ended this Excel snipe hunt and got to my 109-degree car (that’s downright cool–the last three days were 111 or 112!), I had two minutes.  Wasn’t going to happen.  I was 10 minutes late and my blood pressure was 20 points higher (systolic AND diastolic each) than my last reading at a weigh-in on Monday.  Worst of all is that, as much as this day called for a beer or 12, alcohol is strictly verboten on this diet.  Not even one.  I asked my beer aficionado boss to please have a six-pack for me this weekend.  He said no problem–he’s going golfing tomorrow.  I knew I could count on him!

At least I have the weekend to recover.  I’m optimistic–after all, the way today was, I’ve got nowhere to go but up.

Dear Word Press,

First, let me say that (all in all) you have a great service here.  Up until now, my biggest problem is that I just don’t have a lot of time to blog.  In all fairness, there’s not much you can do about that.  It’s just unfortunate for my readers (both of them), that I don’t seem to be able to do much about it either.

That’s not the reason for this letter, though.  There have been some changes to the blog generator as of late, and quite frankly, I don’t like them.  There are a plethora of symbols to my left as I type my draft that seem to serve no purpose other than to annoyingly put a dialog box where I am trying to type every time I move my cursor out of the way.  I can’t see what I’m typing when there is a dialog box (that I never wanted in the first place) in my way.

I had a system, I liked it, but now there’s a bunch of usurpers getting in my way.  There are plenty of symbol buttons above my draft box.  Either make more rows, or give me a way to make the ones on my left go away, please.

The biggest problem, though, is my sudden seeming inability to insert pictures into my posts.  As you can see from my last post (nearly a month ago), I had no problem then.  But for the last week or so, I have made innumerable attempts to make a new entry, but I needed photos (ok, jpeg’s–stinkin’ new terminology) to illustrate my point.  In fact, without them, I had no point.

Problem is that when I use the handy-dandy “add an image” or “add media” buttons, it won’t do it.  I’ve tried everything–browser uploader, flash uploader, nothing works.  Yes, they’re jpeg’s–the same type I’ve successfully uploaded so many times before.  But now all I get when I view my drafts/posts is a link I have to click to see the photo.  If I wanted a link, I’d add a link.  I want both my readers to see an image, dammit.  Is that too much to ask?

To sum things up, to make me happy I’d want:

  1. less clutter on the draft page.  My technological expertise is on the PhD level–“Push here, Dummy.”  I’m overwhelmed and confused.  I can handle Word, although I’m still struggling to make the changes in the 2007 version (I’ve only had it since last April, after all).
  2. the “add image” button to actually ADD an image instead of a link.

I figure if GM and Chrysler can keep asking for all those billions without a modicum of shame, that these simple (and free!) requests would not be too presumptious.

Pretty Please?  With sugar lumps on top?



It’s a Vast, Med-Wing Conspiracy!!!!

They say the first step in overcoming a problem is admitting you have one.  Much as I hate to admit it, I am now in my mid-forties.  That means that the Second Law of Thermodynamics is starting to exercise its dominance over my body.  For those of you who, like I, managed to escape the clutches of Physics in high school and college, the 2nd Law says that matter is in a constant state of decomposition, unless energy is expended in maintaining the status quo. 

In my case, the energy I expend to maintain the status quo comes in the form of a seemingly-increasing amount of supplements and medications designed to keep me from feeling my age.  I take a litany of concoctions ranging in size from “did I swallow it or drop it in the sink–I can’t tell!” to “my God, is that a people pill or a horse suppository?!?”  Their design (other than to induce weight-loss in my wallet) ranges from lowering my cholesterol to preventing heartburn (hmmm–if I just quit eating, I could drop both of those…) to getting my knees to halfway function without numbing pain.

Once a week, I take out my two pill boxes (one for the mornings, one for the evenings–not that I don’t even mix THAT up once in a while!), and fill them for the next week.  Most of the tablets I take come in nice bulk bottles–I pour out what I need, file them by day of the week and time of day, then put the rest away until next week.  No big deal.

The cussin’, wailing and gnashing of teeth come, however, when I have to deal with those *^&*&(%^%$$@ blister packs!  One of my meds only comes in a blister pack, and another one comes both ways, but I needed a refill when I was sick and (bless his heart, I know he was doing me a favor) Daddy brought me the med in blister pack form.  The one that I have no choice on, that is one of the larger pills and I can usually cut it out of the pack without too much hassle.  The ones Daddy brought me, though, are of the near-microscopic variety, and getting them out without losing one’s sanity is nigh unto impossible!

It was while struggling with that infinitesimal blister pack that I realized something–there is a vast, med-wing conspiracy going on!  We are the victims of the pharmaceutical companies’ evil scheme to manipulate the market for Prozac, Xanax, and other anxiety-reducing drugs!  Those stinkin’ drug companies pack their itty-bitty pills with great big prices in these nano-sized, hermetically-sealed packs in order to drive us clinically insane in the effort to get the damn things open!!!! 

By the time we do get them open, we’ve crushed the pill, our confidence in surviving another day with our sanity intact, and our determination to stay away from fatty, deep-fried foods!  This means shelling out more money to replace the destroyed medication, to purchase the super-sized fries that go with the bacon cheeseburger to comfort our destroyed egos, and to obtain new medication to keep our minds from falling apart and our bodies from absorbing all that comfort-food fat that will clog our arteries while soothing our souls.

I’m on to you, Phizer, Merck, Bayer, GlaxoSmithKline–you and your little cohorts/competitors, too!  I’ve caught you in the act!  I’ll tell you right now, it won’t work!  I’ll tell my friends about you and they’ll tell…who’s banging on the door so hard?  What’s with the battering ram?  Who are you and why are you all wearing white coats?  Leggo me–I know my 4th Amendment rights!  You can’t force my mouth open!  What’s that pill you’re putting in the tube?  You can’t [gag…ack…kaff!]

*It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood…won’t you be my neighbor?*  Today, boys and girls, we’ll visit Mr. Pharmaceutical Maker.  He’s our friend and deserves all the financial support we can give him….

February 2020
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