Friday, August 3, 2012

Driving for a Living

So, I recently started working for a company called PTI (Professional Transportation Incorporated), and it’s basically a taxi service. We don’t shuttle people around town, instead we transport railroad crews to and from trains and such. And, to boil it down so this topics very short. I love this job.

This is the first job I’ve ever had where I get paid to sleep on the clock. That’s right. Sleep.

It is like a taxi service in the sense that we have to wait for calls to come in for runs, and we can work up too sixteen hours a day (I don’t as much as possible), so managers, and what not, encourage us to rest in between trips.

Another fantastic thing! It practically eliminates dealing with the general public. I worked at Walmart for a little while, and in the course of one shift I probably saw more than a thousand people a day, and I have severe anxiety issues. So, being around that many people each day was like living inside of a vice wound to it’s greatest tension. Working with PTI, I might have to deal with five people at one time (the number of Rail Road employees you can fit into a van) and over the course of the day I might have to deal with eight people altogether. Hell, there’ve been days where I’ve only had to deal with one person all day long.

So, yeah, the anxiety levels have dropped drastically. My wife has even told me that it’s like I’m a completely different person. She even told my mom that. And, on an amusing side note, my mom almost freaked out about that. (There are special circumstances regarding that note that I might share later on.)

But, yeah, the job has done wonders for me, and it’s the best paying job I’ve had to date. So, yeah, I love my job.

Now, don’t get me wrong, there are downsides to the job. The hours are long, and the likelihood of running over your scheduled time is high. I’ve found that irritating, a little bit. And, though it’s the best paying job I’ve had (due to our guarantee), the pay is below minimum wage once you do the math. But, it’s a job that was originally based on commission.

And, the only other thing that really gets me is writing time. Some days, like today, I have a lot of free time to fill with writing. But, other times I don’t have time to put pencil to paper (unless I’m filling out a trip voucher). But, I’m working on making time for writing. (And, the lists I talked about in the last post are going a long way towards that.)

Anyway, I love my job, and I’ll talk to you kids later.

What has been your favorite job so far, and why?

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Universe’s Decisions

I had a longer title for this point, but I can’t remember what it was.

Anyway, I have recently taken to making lists of things, like facebook statuses, twitter updates, blog post topics, story ideas, things like that. Then I take these lists, cut them up into little slips of paper, and stuff them in a jar. (A different jar for each list, naturally.) And, I make my posts based on what I pull out of the jar that day.

Random chance.

Part of the reason I do this is simple laziness. I would rather come up with a whole bunch of stuff at once, witty or not, then sit down each and everyday to write whatever little thing it is. I know it doesn’t sound easy, not the doing it all at once part, but I think it’s easier and I guess that’s what matters. So, yes, random chance decides what I’m going to post today, and tomorrow, and pretty much for the next 100 days.

And, instead of calling it random chance, I call it a universal decision. I hate making decisions. It makes my brain hurt as I overanalyze every single thing about the decision. I can never clearly see the decision from one side or the other. So, to relieve myself of that stress and headache, I make lists, and I use jars. And, yes I use this for writing too.

No, I don’t sit down and come up with a list of completely random words then pull those words out of my jar to try and make sentences. (I would be extremely creeped out if that method made coherent sentences.) But, what I do do is on the same level as the facebook posts and what not, only the list is shorter. I write story ideas down, breaking it up into three categories or so: Short-shorts, short stories, novels (I might need to add novellas to that). I have a jar for each category, and when I’m done with one idea I pull another until I’ve exhausted the ideas. At that point I turn them into second draft jars, and repeat the cycle. (All of this is fairly recent, so I suppose I’m talking about the way I want the system to work.) In doing all of that, I remove the stress of decision-making, and it’s much easier for me to get straight into working.

Anyway, that’s about all I’ve got to say on this topic, for right now anyway, and I was just curious about how you all handle decision making stress?

Please share in the comments, and I will talk to you kids later.