Saturday, June 29, 2013

Going Postal

Yup, I was hired by the United States Postal Service this week.

I know, WTF am I thinking, thought you were opposed to the FedGov, how the heck did they hire YOU if you are as radical as you say?

Well, bluntly, there are danged few jobs in this area.
The school district where I am employed didn't give anyone but the teachers contracts of employment this year. They are going to have to make cuts - and rather than cut a teacher who makes $50,000 a year plus full, completely paid for family benefits, they are going to cut a couple of low level staffers without benefits,  whenever they see fit, to balance the budget.

To this end they have cut the school year by 8 weeks; by both cutting off two weeks at the beginning and going to (mostly) four-day weeks throughout the year - but increased the daily hours for students to attend to 8 AM to 4 PM. This means that I get to work 4 10-hour days; one hour before school starts and one hour after. Um, Yay. I get to leave for work in the dark and come home in the dark, 4 days a week, all winter long. Also, by cutting off the days at the beginning of the school year, they've  cut me out of a whole month's pay.  Not to mention that the latest superintendent accosted me the last time I came in to tell me how much he trusted and admired me - and gave me still another job that one of his whiny, helpless, hapless (yet protected by union and tenure) teachers has refused to do for the last 3 years. About every 3 years I get a new boss - and each one is more arrogant, more misogynistic, and less cognizant of or concerned with the staff's jobs than the last.

Post office, I'll just be part-time - at first. Saturdays (3 hours) and then as a sub for the current postmistress when she's out. But next year,  due to contract negotiations with the unions, that will change, and I can work as many hours as I want. Also, from my date of hire (no matter how many hours I work in the year) it starts the clock of waiting - after a year, I'll be eligible for a mandatory week of vacation as well as medical insurance. Moreover, if I need more hours, I can sub at any PO in a 100-mile radius - or, if I'm happy with my paycheck and have things to do, I can stay home.

Let me think a moment... yeah, the school district is struggling to survive and getting ready to lay off workers and increase the burdens on those who remain, as well as kicking employees who do not have insurance to the curb so that they don't have to fund ObamaCare for them;  while the USPS will always have job openings, and are not looking to close this PO (too centrally located), and are contracted to provide, not merely vaguely promise, insurance for all employees. Not to mention I'll be making a dollar more an hour to start, with guaranteed regular raises - when it has taken me 5 years to get up to my current salary at the school district office.

There is no ideal job, no matter what the Obama-worshippers think. There will be shit work and crud to put up with. But no changing bosses every three years, no yearly threats of dismissal because of budget cuts, and no more dealing with other office workers'/teachers'/superintendents' personal problems that they drag to work with them every day, and take out on everyone else, because it's a 'helping', emotionally socialist environment, where the lower staffers are expected to put up with everyone else's angst, ennui, pretenses, delusions, and foibles. (Can't tell you how many times in the past 5 years I've had to put up with out-and-out temper tantrums from highly unprofessional  'professionals'.) No more emotional hemming and hawing, seeing and sawing, and demands that I "volunteer" my time because I am a lowly staffer and 'should work just as hard as the teachers' (who get paid for any extracurricular activity, above and beyond their salary). The new job won't be heaven. But it will be an improvement.

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