Otterday! And Open Thread

This weekend’s open thread is hosted by two otters. The first is from pennstatenews:

a sleek dry river otter lounges on its side, head up, amongst greenery.

and the second, catching the sun at Calgary Zoo, was taken by Jerry Bowley.

a river otter lying on a log and straw above rushing water. Its eyes are closed and it is lit with warm evening sunlight.

Please feel free to use this thread to natter about anything your heart desires. Is there anything great happening in your life? Anything you want to get off your chest? Reading a good book (or a bad one)? Anything in the news that you’d like to discuss? What have you created lately? Commiserations, felicitations, temptations, contemplations, speculations?

Categories: Life

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14 replies

  1. Well it would seem that all you have to do to get it to rain around here is organise picnic races. The rain started yesterday and continued this morning. Three of the last four picnic races (held once a year) have been cancelled due to rain. It is possible that they are running them in the rain today, I haven’t heard if they have cancelled or not.
    Not being one for pretty dresses, high heels or champagne I am sitting on my lounge, wearing my slippers, watching the rain and faffing around on the internet.

  2. That is a retort to the relatives, indeed.
    Some years ago, somebody noticed that kindergarten teachers were not overseen by anyone in an intrusive and disrespectful way and had far too much autonomy. We would make decisions about stuff and run about acting as if we were authorities in our field. We were very very happy. Underpaid for the responsibilities attached to the job and unvalued, but happy.
    It’s not like that anymore. Except for still being underpaid for the responsibilities attached to the job and being unvalued.
    I am sensing some discontent in my heart.

  3. Lad is struggling with the culture around his favourite game, summing it up succinctly as being populated by ‘sexist jerks’. He is trying to decide if he still wants to be involved, because he still loves the game, but hates how the culture excludes girls and women from playing and all the nasty language and sexist attitudes to women more broadly. The unfairness really makes him angry and sad.
    I am feeling really proud of him and his strength in the face of a very forceful and vindictive culture.

  4. Jennifer Lawrence did it first (last year). /snark
    I have just been reading the Twitters about ‘Baz Lurhmann’s wife’ winning her fourth Oscar. But he’s more famous protested Bec Pobjie’s husband. Maybe because everyone keeps referring to Catherine Martin by who she is married to rather than by her own name? Btw I notice that Catherine Martin’s husband doesn’t have a statue in his own right yet.

  5. Well, shit. I’ve been retrenched. Five weeks and I’ll be out of the job I’ve had for nine years. All because our general manager is a lazy prick who won’t do any marketing, won’t even keep up supply, has run the business down and already killed off one branch – he sees the branches as competitors. Now it’s our turn. We’ll be down to two staff when I’m gone. That’s unworkable on a permanent basis; it’s hard enough when someone’s on leave. This is exactly how he undermined and closed the third branch. What a fucking joke. I liked this job. I’ve been here longer than anywhere else and hoped to stay till I retire. The scary part is, at my age, after this time in a niche job, and in an economy that’s doing down fast, my odds of finding another job are pretty bad. I simply can’t do stuff like checkout work, I can’t stand up that long.

  6. I’m so sorry, kittehserf, that’s wretched. Be sure to use the Hoydens informal network to job hunt, to whatever extent it’s in any way useful. By which I just mean, tell us what you’re looking for in case someone knows someone.

  7. Oh crap Kittehserf. Hope you can find, or we can find, something for you soon.

  8. So sorry, kittehserf. Really loathe that “stomach falling out of my body” sensation one gets when suddenly out of work.

  9. Thanks everyone!
    I got some stuff done yesterday, at least – invested in a suit ::shudder:: for interviews.
    The one good piece of news is that Newstart will be enough to pay the rent and have a little left over (my mother and I live together so we have her pension/super as well). Things will be tight, for sure, but we’re not facing anything worse than that for the time being.

  10. Okay, well, speaking as someone who’s been on Newstart for most of the past few years (coming up to the twelve-month mark on the current batch this week, actually) here’s a bit of a rundown on what you can expect.
    1) You’ll be assigned a Job Network Provider. If you’re in Stream 1 (the one where you’re not disabled, not just out of prison, not near retirement age, not seriously educationally delayed, not Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, and not a member of any other minority group – most people on Newstart, in other words) they’re going to be paid a grand total of $9 by the government to assist you for six months. Or in other words, you’ll get your full $9 out of them through a combination of having letters about the appointments sent to you on a regular basis, being expected to turn up in their office for the appointments (maximum duration about 15 minutes), and maybe getting a cup of water each time from the water cooler in the office if they allow you access to it. Oh, and you’ll be allowed to use their office computers for searching for work if you don’t have a computer of your own.
    2) Centrelink have recently re-designed their income reporting website (it now looks like Windows 8 has vomited all over the front page, and the dominant font is flyspeck 2). You’ll be expected to use this page on a regular basis to report whether or not you’ve earned any income.
    3) The Centrelink online site will ALWAYS ask you whether or not you want to sign up for SMS letters.
    4) If you go into a Centrelink office, expect to be waiting. If you call Centrelink’s phone services, expect to be waiting. If you go into the office with a question, expect to wait to see a staff member who will then refer you to the phone queue where you can wait again. Bring a good book, or whichever handicraft you find most useful in suppressing the desire to strangle people.
    5) While Centrelink are capable of booking appointments up to a month ahead of time, they are not capable of re-scheduling them more than three days ahead of time. This is because Centrelink’s computer systems are, at the heart of it, severely broken in a manner which is the accumulation of about thirty years of “cheapest is best” programming. The miracle is not that it works so well, it’s that the wretched thing works at all.
    6) Centrelink treats their Newstart customers almost as well as they treat their staff. They treat their staff like crap.
    So, welcome to the ranks of the dole-bludgers. You are now personally responsible (along with the other 900,000 of us) for all the problems of the nation. Don’t worry, Good Ol’ Unca Joe has it planned so we’ll all wind up doing Work For The Dole weeding the gardens and picking up the rubbish at retirement homes, which is bound to get you into a new job in no time flat. Which new job? Oh, one of the million or so which are going to be magically created in Mr Abbott’s first term…

  11. One of the women forgotten by history: Mary Dyer.
    Narrated by someone who is, like, completely drunk.

  12. Megpie – sounds familiar. I used to work for Centrelink a dozen years ago. Only job I ever walked out of because it was too stressful. It wasn’t the management or the other staff, who were all nice people but really burned out. It was the complex, constantly changing and punitive legislation that made it too much to put up with. I ended up out of work for two years after that, and that was a lot less stressful, apart from the chronic shortness of cash. Luckily I’ve no debts.
    Colour me shocked that the reporting website’s a load of crap.
    I anticipate getting lots of knitting done while hanging around their office. At least it’s near home, so it’s not a flippin’ train ride just to get there.

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