Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Early Morning Call Out...

I was up last night until about midnight, reading drafts of student papers and trying to send those papers back to students in our course management software. Unbenownst to me (but I know now), the administrator of our system takes it down at 10pm to back it up. Sure would be nice if he'd let us know this. I spent almost another hour, between 10p and 11p, trying to send the papers back. Another good reason why my students shouldn't wait to send their work to me.

So, I set the alarm clock for 8am (usual on a Tuesday night). I don't leave my house on Mondays or Wednesdays until about 11am, but, this morning, I needed to leave a bit early because I was scheduled to present a talk to another class at 11am. But I really wanted to sleep until 8am; I needed it after a day of reading essays and fighting the computer.

This is something of a digression, but Tuesday was a horrible computer day. I couldn't get into the lab where I usually teach my first class because someone had jammed the door and neither I nor the secretary could get it opened. So, we had to move to another lab. Then, in my second class, the computer/overhead system wouldn't work because the computing services department hadn't signed on to the administrator's computer; whenever they take the campus-wide system down, any computer that needs an administrative login has to be reset. And they won't give anyone in my department the code to restart the computer. But, if I call them to come reset the computer, I'm lucky if they show up 45 minutes into the class. I need the system to work when class begins, not when it's half over.

Well, okay. I had a frustrating day with the people who deal with computers and with idiots who can't shut doors properly.

Exhausted and mentally drained, I went to bed and slept soundly until...

7am, when the sound of chainsaws ripped through my dreams. I looked out the window, and there, in my neighbor's yard, a tree-service company was cutting down a pine tree. I tried to go back to sleep, but the chainsaws just kept working. Finally, at 7:30, I got out of bed, made coffee, and went outside to put the trash at the curb for the garbage person.

I walked to the truck parked in my neighbor's driveway and asked for the guy in charge. I pointed out my bedroom window and explained that I had worked late last night, and why on earth were they chopping down a tree at 7am? Even though I live in a small town, I am not a farmer and I don't get up with the chickens. The guy apologized and said he was working with CLECO. He didn't schedule the work; he just did it when they told him to. I asked him to take a message back to his contacts--if they are going to schedule an early tree-cutting session outside of my bedroom window at 7am, I want a week's notice so I can get to bed earlier.

Maybe I'm just getting to be one of those crochety old ladies who wants everything her way. I don't know. I just know that this has been a frustrating week. I want the universe and its minions to work with me, not against me! Above all, I just want everything to work the way it should.

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