Wednesday, July 30, 2014

A Rainbow of Unreliability

Here is something I have known and never really thought about until now-- there is a whole rainbow of different kinds of unreliable people. There are a thousand ways of being unreliable, from literally hiding until the hard part of a job has been finished to simply not waking up on time. Right now I have time to write this because my co-library monitor, a man whom I thought to be extremely punctual, smart, and hard working, has decided to grab on to any communicative ambiguity he can in order to get out of an easy job that interferes with his ability to hang out with his friends. This, in turn, is making me unreliable, since we only have seven people working that galley right now, and I have been detained on my library watch without relief through the second hardest part of the day, the dinner rush. I put a call in, but everyone is so busy that we can't spare anyone to hunt down my relief.

Frankly, there is a part of me that is relieved, because I get to sit and recover a bit. The last few days have been extra exciting because, just as the congressional caucus leaves, I lost a big chunk of my library time. My co-monitor entered a class that runs late, so I have to open the library for him, an arrangement I agreed to only on the condition that he hurries down and takes over as soon as he can, with the understanding that I would make those extra hours up to him later. This means that I haven't even had enough time in the library to sit down, so no break for me at all. But I also worry. My classmates are in there right now, even more understaffed than usual on a busy night, probably muttering about that lazy bastard over in the library. I don't worry about getting officially called out for this, because no one is allowed to leave a watch without someone there to hand the watch off to, but everyone knows who works and who doesn't. I just got pulled off the hard job for an easy job and now I don't even show up?

Above and beyond all the other rules at Piney Point, the main rule is that everyone does their share. Here I am, unable to pull my weight, making others pick up my slack. Until now, I have always been able to retort to anyone who gave me shit for anything that at least I pulled my weight and worked as hard as I could. I don't know what I can do now that this defense is lost to me.

I have fought really hard to stay in the present, to take each day one at a time, and not count the time like everyone else here, because obsessing over the future is poisonous. But now it is very difficult not to think to myself that I will only have to look these people in the eye for another two and a half weeks as a consolation. The worst part is, when I get back they won't give me shit, they will just remember this and move me over from the mental category of people who pull into the category of people who slack.

I had other stories, but they flee from the mind at the moment. This weekend or on Monday I will have time to post more.

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