But: I liked No Award better than Three-Body Problem for the Hugo, 3BP better than Ancillary Sword for the Hugo, AS better than The Goblin Emperor for the Hugo... and TGE better than No Award. (Note that this does not correlate with how well I liked the book or how well I thought it was written; TGE wins easily on both those counts.) So, I dunno. I ended up voting them all under No Award, because I am a crotchety grumpy sort of person who feels The Hugos Are Not What They Used To Be And Darn Kids Get Offa My Lawn, but it was a very close thing. Probably if I'd had another day I would have switched them all above No Award, and if I'd had two more days back under.
2. I had Lots of Opinions about Fringe S5, and then sprocket noted that it was Walter fanfic, and then I got All My Opinions out about it here. (It's honestly a little uneven, because I was writing it while watching the episodes, only later going back to try to make it into a coherent whole. And... that's as good a metaphor for Fringe as any other, I think.)
It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…
1. I was given an IQ test at a job interview
I applied for a copywriting job about a week ago and was told to bring my portfolio along. I spent ages preparing work samples, competency questions, strengths and weaknesses, and so on. When I got to the interview, I was given a spacial-awareness-based IQ test. I have a learning difficulty similar to dyslexia, which makes those tests very difficult for me.
When I finished the test, I was told to wait in a room. After a while, the interviewer came up and said that he could not continue with the interview, as I had scored 6 in the IQ test and their minimum benchmark was 10. He showed me to the door without reviewing my portfolio and after putting a cross through my CV.
I find this a bit strange for a few reasons: I understand why a finance company would ask for an IQ test, but this was a copywriting job. I guess it was some arbitrary way of testing how smart candidates were? Also, it seems ridiculous to dismiss a mid-level candidate before the interview. It’s a small company in a regional area so they can’t have had that many applicants. I understand why such a test would be used for a more general graduate scheme or competitive position, but not even interviewing me as I didn’t pass it, although it was completely unrelated to the role and I hadn’t been informed of it?
Yeah, it’s ridiculous.
Some employers do a terrible job of thinking through how to screen for the qualities and skills they need in a role. Most commonly, that manifests in silly interview questions (“what kind of animal would you be?”) or lack of rigorous probing into the person’s abilities, but sometimes it manifests in a love of tests that don’t actually relate to the work of the position. It sounds like that’s what happened here.
2. My manager doesn’t want me elevating my leg post-surgery
I am recovering from a minor knee procedure. It has taken a long time to be pain free. In fact, I may need more serious surgery sooner than later.
My orthopedic physician has directed me to elevate and ice the knee during those time of higher pain. My new manager is opposed to me raising or elevating it when meeting with clients (I work in government). I have done this only a few time with clients but very, very discreetly. I dress very modestly, wearing longer skirts, dresses, and pants. I sit on the corner of conference table with a chair to the right so I can place the leg/knee up with the table shielding the whole thing. I believe the clients don’t even know I am doing this. They are across from me and can’t see under the table.
I understood her objection to this but didn’t know it to be a absolute ban with my current medical situation. It is more of a reflex to raise it if it hurts. I have suggested that I could place a blanket over my leg to reduce her concern that I don’t look professional to the client.
A week ago, while she was on vacation, someone else on staff complained to her that I was doing this (and talking about my knee status with this client) during a client meeting in the lobby area of the building ( I have a pretty good idea who it was). My first thought was I probably did this as a reflex, but who could be monitoring me that closely? Is my medical issue being talked about with others of the organization? It feels like I am being picked on. What should I do to follow my doctor’s directions and still meet her expectations?
Your manager is being unreasonable. It’s not like you’re putting your feet up on the table in a show of how laid-back you are; you’re discreetly elevating a leg on your doctor’s orders.
Say this to your manager: “My doctor has given me specific instructions about keeping my leg elevated at specific times, and I need to follow those instructions in order to have a good surgical outcomes. For the next X weeks, I may need to elevate it in client meetings. Would it be helpful for me to talk to HR about accommodating this and/or get documentation from my doctor?”
If she continues to push back, go talk to HR. This is the kind of thing that’s appropriate to take to them, and they should intervene.
3. Putting off callers who my boss doesn’t want to meet with
I’ve been an executive assistant to the CEO for past 9 years. One particular issue that arises often is putting off someone the CEO doesn’t want meet or speak with. Usually it’s a representative from a company that wants to buy ours. By the CEO’s vague answers of “Tell them I’m fully booked this month,” I assume she doesn’t want to schedule anything at all, ever. I do not feel comfortable telling these callers that she is not interested unless she deliberately tells me to.
Sometimes, after several calls, the putting off tactic works. However, recently I haven’t been unable to shake one particular person for several months. Responses such as “her schedule is full” are followed up with “Can you give me some dates and we can see if they work?” I always respond by saying I need to speak to her about her schedule before committing to a time. Unfortunately, I get the same vague answer from CEO and the cycle begins again.
What is the best way to handle this? Is there a secret code to get the point across?
Well, you could try, “Right now we’re not booking anything additional in her schedule.” But I’d also talk to your boss and see how she wants this handled. Say this to her: “Sometimes when I tell callers that you’re fully booked this month, they want to try to schedule for the following month or whatever the next available date is, or they’ll call back month after month. For people you don’t want to schedule anything with, is there something more definitive I could say to them?”
You could suggest language like, “Her schedule is very full, but you’re welcome to send written information for her to look over” or “because we’re triaging her schedule, I’m not able to offer you an appointment” or “She’s asked me to rely that she won’t be able to meet with you but appreciates your interest.”
4. Employee keeps finding new ways to violate policies
I have a particularly poor employee who does decent actual work, but she is horrible for our office culture and never does anything so wrong that she gets fired. In fact, she seems to just pick a new policy to ignore each time she gets called out for ignoring another. For example, earlier this year, she was spending an outrageous amount of time on personal phone calls. I went through the process of addressing it with the team, addressing it to her personally, then taking her to the HR office to discuss it. Finally, the personal calls stopped. Now, she is leaving work early without telling anyone, let alone asking permission. I have addressed the team about it and talked with her personally.
I feel that this will never end. She will just find another policy to ignore, never causing enough trouble to get fired for repeated offenses. I work at a rural, post-secondary institution. I am a new manager. What can I do to make this vicious cycle stop?
Tell her that you’ve noticed a pattern where she violates various policies until she’s told to stop, and that going forward you need her complying with all office policies, without exception. Tell her that if she continues to violate policies, you’ll need to let her go, and that this is the final warning she’ll receive. Put this in writing, and coordinate with whoever needs to sign off on firing her, so that they’re in the loop on what’s happening.
(Also, if you’ve noticed other issues aside from the policy violations, address those at the same time, so that it’s not a constant trickle of discussions of problems.)
Also, stop addressing the whole team about problems that are really confined to one person; that’s annoying and frustrating for everyone who isn’t doing the thing you’re addressing.
5. Moving from non-exempt to exempt
I’ve been at a new position for just over a year. My manager is fantastic and treats me fairly. I’m given respect and responsibility in my position and my duties have been growing substantially over the last year. I started by assisting with the coordination of a project and I’m now managing two projects by myself. I tend to have a lot of overtime, but since I work for the government I am asked to take it all as comp time.
My manager has asked me to rewrite my job description so it more accurately reflects the changes in my duties. She said that it will likely move me to an exempt position (I’m currently non-exempt).
I know the definitions of exempt and non-exempt, but what are the pros and cons of the change? Is there anything I need to be prepared for or think through before the transition?
Well, I’d ask about whether you’ll still be getting comp time, or whether you’ll be giving that up entirely. That’s the biggest change. (Note: In general, it’s not legal to give non-exempt employees comp time in lieu of overtime pay, but the government has conveniently exempted themselves from that rule.)
If you’re going to be giving up the comp time when you work over 40 hours a week, that’s potentially a big change, and you’d want to do the math to see if you’ll ultimately be taking home less in salary and paid time off.
I was given an IQ test at a job interview, my manager won’t let me follow my doctor’s orders, and more was originally published by Alison Green on Ask a Manager.
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Source: The Wage Gap, by Gender and Race
Find median annual earnings of black men and women, Hispanic* men and women, and white women as a percentage of white men's median annual earnings
White men: 1.00
Black men: 0.751
Hispanic men: 0.672
White women: 0.78
Black women: 0.64
Hispanic women: 0.54
*Their word, not mine.
Median annual earnings of white men and women, black men and women, and Hispanic men as a percentage of Hispanic women's median annual earnings:
Hispanic women: 1.00
Black women: 1.185
White women: 1.444
Hispanic men: 1.244
Black men: 1.391
White men: 1.852
The proper phrasing isn't "Latina women make just over half what white men make." It's "White men get paid almost double what Latina women get paid." Followed by, "What are they doing for your company that's worth 185% of the money you'd pay a Latina woman for the same job? Are your shareholders aware that you're paying white men more than you pay other demographics of employees--are they happy that you're wasting money like this? Especially considering that they're over-represented in the high-income tiers?"
MOM, KEEP UP WITH LIVEJOURNAL IF YOU WANT DRAGONS! >_<
“[D]o not highfive the Vulcans. Don’t do it. They look like they want highfives. They do not want highfives.”
( INwatch+Bookwatch )
( Dragons under fold )
WOW the interface has changed. Very streamlined. Can't find a damn thing other than the matches; it's hard to even find the questions anymore. (I eventually found them. And the tests. Again, hidden. Wow.)
Scrounged through my archives; found a picture that's not-unflattering and not so old that it doesn't represent me anymore.
Immediately started getting "hey what's up" messages from guys. Straight guys. Straight, monogamous guys, sometimes Christian. One of them said I have "everything he's looking for in a woman." (I replied, pointing out that I'm married. Later, I realized I should've asked, "you're looking for a woman with a husband?")
New policy: Block anyone who messages me who
1) Has less than an 80% match, and doesn't mention any reason for contacting me ("Hi; how are you?");
2) Throws complements at me without referring to any of the details of my profile ("you are beautiful and good looking i will like to know you more better if you dont mind we can chat better through text..." and he gave me his phone #.)
I have seen some profiles for awesome people that I think I'd enjoy getting to know.
I'll keep tweaking my profile; I've added a note that I'm prone to blocking straight guys who don't mention any kind of shared interests when they contact me. I noted that I live in a big city; if I want social contact with random strangers, that's easily available to me. (Did not bother mentioning that YO, I PROBABLY HAVE MORE IN COMMON WITH THEM... the majority of locals are pro-gay-marriage, and even those who know nothing about Paganism aren't prone to being against it.) Mr. Dude-from-Australia who is looking for the next love of his life can keep looking.
I don't know if I'll keep the account active. It's a whim. I may put up the filter that lets me not search or be search by straight guys.
And then I went home and sewed flat-felled seams, a straightforward but very fussy procedure that requires precise ironing and even more precise, tiny stitches. It's done now, six loooong seams, but ugh.
Work tomorrow. Double ugh!
• Reread draft
• Discuss draft and necessary revisions with advisor R
• Write conclusion
• Implement revisions
• Fix up footnotes
• Prepare bibliography
• Prepare appendices
• AUGUST 12: DISSERTATION DEFENSE
• AUGUST ??: DISSERTATION SUBMISSION DEADLINE
Other academic work:
• Figure out students' reading assignments
• Submit fall book orders ASAP
• Deal with making defense and submission dates official with gsas
• Prepare syllabus for fall
• Start preparing lectures for fall
• Deal with any pre-semester student stuff
• Attend new faculty orientation
• Start teaching, August 31
Non-academic stuff to do:
( Logistics and organization )
( Chores and communication )
( Fun stuff )
Meanwhile, Gencon last day was pretty chill. I had no events and only lizardsitting duty for a bit.
Final account of damage done:
- L5R fancy box thing containing some boosters (Twenty Festivals and something else) and a pretty playmat
- a fancy tin box full of L5R boosters from the latest expansion (they were sold out of starters, which is awesome, but I'd ordered Crab, Crane, and Unicorn starters that should be awaiting us at home, so I'm not concerned)
- a Hida O-Ushi inexperienced playmat by Steve Argyle (I have a copy of the card and I love that piece--last year at his booth I asked if they had a playmat of that particular piece and that time they didn't have any, so I was thrilled they had her this time!)
- a Hida Kisada (Little Bear) playmat by Drew Baker, because Joe plays Crab and that's also a great piece of art :)
- a Tony DiTerlizzi RPG art book, which I figured was going to be the best value for money if I wanted to feast my eyes on much DiTerlizzi art (I loved his work on Planecape). I didn't attempt to get it signed because I hate standing in lines and I figured that by buying the book I had already supported the artist.
- a print by Nen, as mentioned in earlier report.
- a two-player playmat with a dragon on one side and an extremely regal lady on a throne on the other side.
- a book on violence and war as depicted in the media. No clue if it'll be any good, but we'll see.
- a BADASS RAVEN PUPPET. It's bigger than my head. Photographic proof to follow, I promise. They had a fox puppet as well, but OMG THE RAVEN. I figure that raven can take out a regiment of foxes without even noticing. I will call her Cheris Experienced.
- A Roy Mustang and a Scar deck for the Fullmetal Alchemist TCG.
- A couple decks for the Horus Heresy (Warhammer 40k) CCG, out of curiosity. I have no idea if the art is good or the game is either, but it was cheap.
...I may have done some damage. Joe bought Pathfinder books out of guilt after the amount of Pathfinder the lizard played, plus some Battletech mini thing. Yune bought the lizard a three-headed dragon puppet. It is adorablesauce. Apparently they were shopping for a fox for the lizard but when the lizard saw the three-headed dragon, she threw over the fox for the dragon. (I would too if the foxes wouldn't stab me in the back for disloyalty.) Yune said she had to choose wisely as she wasn't getting both fox and dragon. It's a great dragon. =)
Food: ate at Ruth's Chris to celebrate stuff and that was excellent, including the carrot cake and crême brulée we got to go because my sister decided to double down on desserts but we were too full to eat it there. (They were delicious.) I had the 6-oz. filet and liked it very much. Then ate at Shula's, which is apparently a steakhouse founded by a...former football player? I was pleased by the scallops, I was going to like the asparagus with Hollandaise sauce no matter what, and the service was great. Room service may also have happened one lunch. I skipped lunch today because I was too sleepy and then the dice decided for us that we were going to get Thai for dinner. I had Thai iced tea and pad Thai because I'm boring that way, but I love both. Yune had an elaborate pineapple fried rice, and Joe amused the restaurant people by requesting extra of the Very Spicy Pepper to add to his masaman curry.
This has been a great vacation. I got a tiny bit of coding done. And then I will go home and there will be a very furry, needy cat and I can sleep in and then I will have to get more coding done. We fly home tomorrow, and I plan on taking the rest of the day to recover, especially since it will also be our thirteenth wedding anniversary and I don't believe in tempting fate on calendrically significant dates.
Fandom: The Silmarillion and other histories of Middle-Earth - J. R. R. Tolkien
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Galadriel, Celebrimbor
Additional Tags: First Kiss, Bittersweet, Marriage Proposal, Originally Posted Elsewhere, Partially Requited Love
Galadriel takes care of an unwanted suitor in her own inimitable way.
Read on SWG!
The Random Silmfic Prompt Generator bears yet more fruit! May my lifetime long losing streak of never winning any contest ever finally end. (Well, that's not true. In second grade I won four tickets to the circus. BUT SINCE THEN.) But also -- Galadriel/Celebrimbor. I totally ship it, but only in the context of totally crushing Celebrimbor's heart. :D
In case you can't tell, I really like Celebrimbor. :D
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Genre/Tags: Angry John, Names, S3E3: His Last Vow
John married one liar, lives with another, and doesn't know either of their names.
Sherlock can work with that.
Pre/Post Music - Wicked Games (acoustic cover by Natalie Lungley) - Chris Isaak
Unspeakably cute sneeze from a Pomeranian puppy!
"Tiny Owl Pretends To Be A Rubber Ducky While Bobbing Around in a Warm Bath".
Adorable video of sheep being herded...by a rabbit.
"One Week-Old Pygmy Goats Meet the Protective Resident Barn Cat For the First Time". (Despite the title, the cat doesn't do much in this video. Despite that, the video is tremendously cute. And there's also this video of the same pair of goats as newborns, learning to leap before they're 24 hours old.)
"800 corgis take over a beach in California".
"Ads for JR’s 'Seishun 18' rail pass celebrate the isolated beauty of Japan’s most far-flung stations".
Birds'-eye view pictures from around the world, taken by a team of Russian photographers.
"How Slavery’s Legacy Affects the Mental Health of Black Americans".
"How White People Sound When They Argue About Racism".
"It’s Weird How People Correct Me When They Think I’m a Woman", by the author of the "No, It’s Not Your Opinion. You’re Just Wrong" that's been going around.
Via Twitter, "What is Orientalism, and how is it also racism?" [April 2014]
At Everyday Feminism, "Why Saying ‘It’s My Choice’ Doesn’t Necessarily Make Your Choice Feminist".
"Understanding How and Why Cats Communicate In the Manner In Which They Do". [~2-minute video]
Nichelle Nichols is going to space! "Nichelle Nichols, who has been an ambassador for NASA since portraying the groundbreaking character in the 1960s, will fly on the SOFIA space telescope in September. / While the telescope - housed in a specially converted Boeing 747 - doesn't quite go to the final frontier, it makes it as high as the stratosphere, around 50,000 above the Earth."
In better news, I finally bought some frames for various pieces of artwork I've collected over the years. Now my problem will be finding bits of wall that I can hang them on. There's a bit of an obstacle with my closet doors taking up most of one wall and a couple of bookcases taking up a lot of space as well, but I'm pretty sure I'll be able to arrange it.
The big entertainment of hanging things is going to be the Chat Noir print that I picked up at a yard sale yesterday. It's two feet by three feet and came in a HEAAAAAAAAAAAAAVY wooden frame. When I bought the other frames at Michaels today, I asked them what a general price would be for a frame sample they had that was kinda close. In that size? About $350.
I paid three bucks.
I WIN. XD
The forecast was for a high of 90 F, but it was also supposed to be partly cloudy, so I figured I could probably handle it. I got up at 5 AM and was at the park ready to run by 6:30 AM, and the first couple of hours weren't bad, although the only clouds in the sky were a few wispy ones down around the horizon, and the sun was already beating down.
I stopped to take a picture of the full moon that was still hanging in the sky as I started my run.
I made it to nine miles without too much trouble, but then the heat really started to get to me. The running trail at the park makes a 3-mile loop, and I began to stop at the bathroom once per loop to splash water on my face and head and refill my water bottle, which helped, but not enough. I made it to twelve miles, and then to fifteen, but then I noticed my cell phone battery was nearly dead. I have an app on my phone to keep track of my miles and run/walk intervals and play music while I run, so I needed it to finish my run. I'd brought a battery stick with me to charge up my phone when it got low, but I discovered that I'd brought the wrong cord (I always forget the iPhone doesn't use a standard USB micro port), so I took that as a sign to go home, charge up my phone, and wait out the heat of the day and finish my run later.
"Later" turned out to be 5 PM—the sun was still out and it was still hot, but my oak tree provided enough shade to make running laps around the house fairly comfortable, and I'd recuperated enough so that the last five miles were pretty easy. So I got my twenty miles in, although with a six-hour break between the first fifteen and the last five.
I have two more mileage-increasing long runs before the marathon in October: 23 miles on August 22 and 26 miles on September 12. In between, I'll do shorter runs of 6–7 miles. The shorter runs are no problem—they won't take that long, and I can finish them before it gets too hot. The weather should be cooled down enough in September so I'm not too worried about the 26-mile. But it will still be pretty hot when the 23-mile run rolls around, and I'm not sure how I'm going to handle it. I could just split it into two segments, like I did with the 20-miler, but I'd like to finish it in one go if possible.
I've been thinking about taking a little weekend trip, drive out to the coast where it's cool, and run along a nice beach somewhere. I don't know exactly where, and I probably shouldn't spend the money on hotels when I've already got so many other trips planned for this fall, but it's very tempting!
In retrospect, it probably wasn't a good idea to sign up for the Long Beach Marathon. It's just too darned hot to be doing long training runs in July and August. But I've gotten this far, and I'm determined to finish the training somehow. The marathon itself is going to be a breeze after this!
When you get to wear suits like this, all of a sudden you feel like a kid again. And it’s a lot of fun!