When you get enough liquor in them, boy are they a hoot!

SSB and I attended another drug dinner -- with an OPEN BAR!!! SCORE!!!

The food was phenomenal and served family style which made it feel even more like a party atmosphere. We actually didn't talk much about the drugs that each of the reps were hocking. In fact, I almost forgot why we were there in the first place.

Most of the reps gathered around SSB and I as we ate, as we are just that frickin' entertaining! One of the reps preceded everything he said with, "At the risk of a little self disclosure..." Well, come on, you know what follows is going to be interesting! Another overheard us talking about Wii and began picking us for information. He confessed that although he likes video games, his wife says he's too old to play. I pshawed that! We proceeded to get him all drooly over Wii, and when he heard that there was a Zelda for Wii, he got all dreamy-eyed, like he was going back in time, muttering, "Yeah, Zelda is great." Another rep was asking us for computer tips making us feel all geeky -- it was fabulous! Another was complaining how she had to go on the road with this rep that kept trying to pick up every woman he met. Another picked up that topic to concur that the man was embarrassing to be around. He asked us, "How could you work with someone like that. I just want to ask him if he knows how embarrassing he is." I told him that he should audio tape him and play it back to him. He got all giddy with the scenario in his head of the play-back to this guy.

We ate a lot, we drank a lot, we laughed a lot. I don't remember the last time that I had that much fun with a bunch of strangers, let alone drug reps! I can't wait for the next one!


"AG" said...

I love the title of this entry!

Sylvana said...

AG, yeah, we usually treat them like dirt, but they really came through for us this time :)

Irb said...

How fun! If I ever get to start swinging in those wild and crazy Search Engine Optimization circles, I hope they're at least half as entertaining...

Sylvana said...

Irb, it is well known in Wisconsin that most situations are instant fun -- just add alcohol!

That's My Final Answer

Wednesday, February 27, 2008 | 0 Comments

I made a decision today. And that is a load off my mind.

The job situation was far more complex than I could even explain in a post. Most people never get the experience of working at place that doesn't just feel like a place of employment -- but it feels like your second home. I was lucky enough to have TWO! The people aren't just coworkers, but they are like part of your family.

Sure some of the people are crazy and drive you nuts, but then, you haven't met my real family. Same deal.

I have been thinking about the decision I would have to make for months. It was not an easy one to make at all. Each place had something great to offer, and not so great.

I told my bosses at the library one by one from the top down today, before I notified HR. I figured that it just didn't seem right to leave it up to some outside person to break the news. They were each stunned that I would turn down the position, but I feel that in the end they really understood. They are of course heart-broken at the missed opportunity, as I am; but they do have a fair second choice. That was a relief for me, as well as them. She isn't me, of course, but I'm sure she will do. They have already asked if they can keep calling me for fill-in positions and the like. OF COURSE! Nothing else has changed, it's just bad timing for this particular position, I told them.

Ultimately, it came down to flexibility and potential. And even after making the decision, I am not 100% sure I made the right one. But it is done,and I feel better.

One thing that really helped me feel good about the choice I made was thinking about which job I would regret giving up more if I ended up losing the job that I chose due to some event (such as budget cuts or store closure). I realized that if I took the library job and subsequently lost it due to budget cuts, I would regret having given up the pharmacy job MORE than giving up the library job and eventually losing the pharmacy job due to store closure. That feeling of greater regret helped me know that over-all, the pharmacy was where I needed to be.

Now where's my damn chocolate!!!


Shannon said...

Yay! And you still have that connection at the library...maybe other opportunities will come and be a better fit someday. Congrats on making a decision that's right for you.

Sylvana said...

Shannon, thanks. I feel so much better now that I don't have that to worry about. And I know now that I certainly made the right decision, so it makes it that much better.
It is so great to have this blog to work out these matters because I obviously couldn't talk to most of my current non-blog friends about the dilema -- they had biases due to the fact that they are connected to one job or the other.

Good News or Bad News?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008 | 0 Comments

I just talked to Mo tonight and she informed me that I am first pick for the library position. That means that if I want the job, I have the job.

I have been waiting for a full-time, full benefit, real staff position at the library for years! So why is this so depressing? Why is it making me so anxious?

Bad hours and bad timing.


Human resources haven't contacted me yet, so I still have time to decide. But what am I going to do? I really do love both my jobs. And both have crazy people that I would have to deal with on a daily basis.

I have good friends at the library. I am afraid of losing them as friends if I have to work as an equal coworker with the one (she can be very silly and frustrating) and as an underling to the other (we will butt heads!).

I have good friends at the pharmacy that I am afraid I'll lose if I take the other job as they will see it as betrayal and abandonment.

The pay at the pharmacy is better and has potential for being even greater. The pay at the library is not as good, and will not improve in the future.

If I don't take the job at the library, they will be greatly disappointed, but life will go on and they will find someone else. If I leave the pharmacy, I fear the place will be crippled even worse than it is right now. A couple of people have even told me outright that if I left, they would be fast behind me as I am their island of sanity (yeah, ME, that is how bad it gets there!).

I fear everyday that the pharmacy owner will crack under all the pressure she's under and shut down the place -- and without a pharmacist, we can't even open the store. But, with the economy the way it is and educational budget cuts what they are, I'm not so sure that the library position is so safe either.

The library promised to be fairly flexible with their hours, and it would not be that difficult to take time off during the summer. But my hours are VERY flexible at my current job -- I write my own schedule and I can do some of my work at home. Plus my son works with me, and would most likely not have the job if I left.

I love hanging out with the whole staff at the library, some of the pharmacy staff I could do without.


At the library, every semester I will get new workers that I will most likely not be able to choose. At the pharmacy, I will pretty much have a say in every worker hired.

I have way more power over my environment at the pharmacy, and you know what? I like that. A lot.


I just don't know! I was kind of hoping that something would have been decided for me at this point. Maybe my current boss would have a nervous breakdown. Maybe I wouldn't have been first choice. Maybe either of them would have said "no" to THREE WEEKS OFF!! I mean, COME ON!! Maybe I should have asked for a month...

As you can see, they both want me really bad. Both are really counting on me to come through for them. And I like both of them a lot, if for different reasons.

I have never had such a difficult career choice in my life.
I'm going to go curl up in a corner now and hope this all blows over.
Nudge me when the coast is clear.


evilsciencechick said...

OK, you are being ENTIRELY too nice about this! You are so worried about what the people at either job will do, that it's clouding your judgment.
You are not responsible for their happiness or sanity.

Now, take a step back and weigh each job according to YOUR needs and YOUR happiness. AND the needs and happiness of your family. YOU GUYS COME FIRST! Not them. They will survive without you. and if they snub you for making a decision that's best for you, then maybe they weren't really your friends in the first place. Friends are generally HAPPY when you make a move that makes you happy.

So which one would make you happy? Would you be happy with more money, or doing something you have passion for?

Good luck! I know these decisions are never easy!!! (((hugs!)))

Sylvana said...

ESC, thanks. It is a tough decision. They both are great in some ways and both suck in some ways. It's trying to figure out what good stuff I need and what sucky stuff I can tolerate that is most of the problem.

Mrs. Loquacious said...

You have a very tough choice ahead of you, Sylvana! :( Unfortunately, I cannot offer advice of any merit to your situation since it is uniquely your own. That said, *I* am personally a library lover; I entered the working world by being a page at the local library for 4 years. I'm finding that whatever happens, I tend to be drawn back to libraries, even though I realize that librarians do so much more than just order and process new books. This is why my future dream is to work as a teacher-librarian with a focus on balanced, early literacy. :)

Good luck with your decision; may you find peace with whatever you decide!

Shannon said...

I want to echo ESC comment. The decision is about you and now how either place will cope. If the pharmacy cracks without you, it's because of bad leadership which you currently cannot fix. What if it closes with you there?

I think you should choose whatever will make you (and your family of course) happy, whatever you will like doing the most, and whatever will afford you the most potential in the future.

Does either job offer more room to grow and learn?

What a LOOOOONG weekend!!

I mentioned in a recent post that I would be solidifying plans for a vacation. The travel agent that we saw was not getting us the results that I had hoped for, so I decided to take another try at figuring it all out myself.

All week I was seeing some pretty good prices, and had even considered buying the tickets Thursday. But SSB thought we might want to go in to talk to the travel agent again on Friday.

I have had a really bad cold all week, and Friday I was busy trying to get caught up at work, so I forgot about going to see her. We stayed up late Friday night searching for tickets again, but all the searches that I had been doing all week were coming up far higher than they had been. We decided we should probably jump on some tickets before they went up anymore. I purchased tickets through Continental for about $400 more than we had been seeing, but at least we had tickets.

As is my nature, I fretted about the huge, last-minute commitment. I did some more searches Saturday and came up with a better deal and a better itinerary. Luckily, I was a Continental member and was able to cancel my reservations within 24 hours of booking. However, when I tried to complete the booking on the other airline, I kept getting knocked off everytime I got to the end of entering all my info! After the third time I was very frustrated, so you can imagine my state of mind when after the forth time that it happened and I re-ran the itinerary search, those same tickets came in as TWICE AS MUCH!!!

I shot the airline a scathing email about their website and how they had ruined our vacation plans, then I sat and cried for about 20 minutes. While SSB was preparing to storm the airline company to demand an apology for his fine lady, I decided to try a different itinerary. I not only found one that was still within our price range, I managed to save us a couple hundred over the original, too!

Since this airline does not have a 24 hour bail-out, we are indeed now committed to our plans.

What are they?

At the end of the summer, we are going to Scotland!! We have been saving some of my dual income, as I have mentioned. AND I managed to get my boss to agree to give me up for THREE WEEKS!! I haven't taken vacation in the two years that i have worked there(except for a day here and there) so I really do have it coming. And it is far enough in advance that I am not too worried about it. I know she is, but she will be fine.

We will be spending a day in Iceland, spend shy of three weeks in Scotland, and finish up our journey at Stonehenge before flying home. I am so excited! This will be the first time that SSB and JD have been overseas, and I know that they will LOVE Scotland! I already have accommodations in mind and have begun the remaining planning that will be needed. I am an efficient planner and have been told that I could make a great career creating vacation packages -- but you know what, I already have more careers than I know what to do with!

Speaking of that, my interview for the library position went well even though I was half hungover from my cold medicine. They really want me for the position and have even made accommodations for my travel plans, but I just don't think I can take the job. I feel horrible letting them down, but I'm sure that they can find someone that can fill the spot. I have no idea who they could have fill my shoes at the pharmacy!

But don't worry, she'll be fine for three weeks. I'm going to get hooked up with an international cell plan to keep in touch -- and there are always internet cafes!


Mrs. Loquacious said...

I am envious of your trip...Scotland? Hubbs is still not yet ready for European travel; he prefers to stay in N. America or else head to Asia.

The best part of any travel would have to be visiting old historic sites and museums. Be sure to include something of the sort as you plan out your itinerary! :)

Oh - and I am constantly amazed at how quickly website prices go up. Expedia may be one of the worst. Once it went up $80 in a span of about 45 minutes for the exact same itinerary.

Sylvana said...

Mrs. Loquacious, Scotland is a very easy country to get around and the people are great.

We love old buildings and geological formations -- so we will seeing a lot of that. I also have friends in Scotland that I will try to see. One I met on the blogosphere, and the other directed a cetacean voluteer program that I participated in a few years ago.

I have purchased many a trip related thing on the internet before, from hotel rooms to plane tickets, but that was THE SINGLE WORST experience of that kind. Truly horrible.
But I do have to say that the airline immediately responded to both the emails that I sent, and I thought the airline was great when I traveled on it; so they will get a reprieve from me.

Lyvvie said...

Can't Wait To See You!!!

Leon J. de la Garza said...

seems like it's going to be a great vacation..
i'm in need for some vacations..

i haven't had a real vacation since i was in highschool.. which means.. about 4 years now..
that sucks huh?

Im glad you are taking some vacations.. i hope you have a great time!

Sylvana said...

Lyvvie, it's going to be fun. I have already spent 2 months in Scotland traveling just about everywhere, from Ayrshire to Orkney. I can't wait to do it all over again with my family.

Plus, getting to meet another blogger makes it all that more exciting!

Leon, I am so ready for a vacation, I won't want to come back!

It wasn't as difficult to save for a vacation as I thought it would be. You should start planning a trip right now and saving up.

Happy Anniversary!

Sunday, February 17, 2008 | 0 Comments

Friday was SSB and my 17th anniversary.

That seems like such a long time when I say it, but when I think about our time together, it really doesn't seem that long at all.

Friday I left work early and we started off our day by visiting a travel agent. How romantic! We have been saving up some of my dual job money in the hopes of a late summer escapade. We will know more next week.

Then we went to out favorite in-town restaurant to discuss the travel possibilities. SSB will be graduating from his program this spring and I thought that before he gets started in his career, we should probably try to take a LONG vacation somewhere -- overseas, since he has never been out of the country save for the time that I dragged him through a small part of Canada.

On our walk home we popped into our local thrift store* where I found an awesome sweater and pair of jeans. It is one of my favorite stores to shop. Over half my wardrobe is from finds at that store and my house is equipped with many a great find from there too.

We looked up movie showings in our area and discovered that they were all crap, or movies that we didn't want to see on our anniversary or in the theater. So we rented a couple and bought some local wine. The movies were eh, and so was the wine, but it was nice to be at home relaxing together. That's been rare lately.

A little before midnight, we bundled up and went bowling! It was great. We pretty much had the place to ourselves. The dance club atmosphere they have on weekend nights is so romantic, and we bowled pretty good games too.

Saturday I had to get up early to work. But SSB came shortly before closing to help me install a new coat rack. Nothing makes you feel more like a couple than working as a team on a project.

Then we went shopping at one of our favorite stores - Kohls. It's a Wisconsin based store that is AWESOME! Most of my wardrobe is either from Kohls or our local thrift store. They just have what I like and Kohls has some really impressive sales. We got between 40-75% off everything that we bought, plus an extra 15% off at the register! NICE!!

We used the money that we saved to eat at Applebees. It has been years since we have eaten there. We went during their busy dinner time, but still got in immediately AND got a BOOTH!! I love booths! Our waitress was a little creepy (as they tend to be in those places with crap on the walls) but the food was delicious!

We finished off the night with yet another mediocre movie and some cuddle time on the couch with our dogs.

You know it is love when you can spend your time together doing seemingly ordinary things and still feel like you are doing extraordinary things. I am definitely looking forward to the next 17!!

*Bush actually stopped at this store on his way through Wisconsin several years ago and cited stores like it as proof of the thriving economy -- uh, you know, no offense to the thrift store, but when thrift stores are thriving while new goods stores are not, it kind of gives the impression that people don't have the money for new goods. Also, thrift stores like that one get all their goods for free! People donate all the goods that the store sells, AND in that particular store, and some other stores like it, all the workers are volunteers too. So without money spent on merchandise or employees, how could they fail? Is that the way of the future according to Bush?


Anonymous said...


Many, Many more.

Sylvana said...

Shamus, aw, thanks! I know we will oblige!

Shannon said...



Congratulations! Hope you do go on that trip.

Michael Manning said...

Congratulations and yes, Applebee's is awesome with the half-order Pecan Crusted Salad!!!

Sylvana said...

Shannon, thanks. With that many years together in this era, I kind of feel like we won something. -- Or SHOULD win something!

Flubberwinkle, me too! It really does look promising :)

Michael, I had the Oriental Chicken Salad -- it was even good two days later when I ate it for breakfast! That's a huge feat for a salad!

Douglas Cootey said...

Getting away is great for relieving stress and finding new perspective on life. I hope you two get your chance. Happy anniversary! My wife and I will be celebrating our 20th this August. Long relationships aren't the norm anymore. Congratulations on making it work.


Sylvana said...

Douglas, there are a few things a couple can do together to test their compatibility -- home improvement and travel. We can do both, but we travel together much better than fix things together!
I attribute our longevity to the fact that we are both very similar and very different and the fact that we are willing to compromise in between.
Congratulations on your own rarity!

"AG" said...

Happy anniversary!

Come vacation in Maine! We have a Norway and China!

Sylvana said...

AG, Thanks!
And thanks for the suggestion, but we already have our plans made -- just need to take care of a few more things....


Tuesday, February 05, 2008 | 0 Comments

There has been a rash of upsets lately: Obama over Clinton (I'm OK eiter way, they both have a lot to offer -- and either would break boundaries that need to come down), McCain over just about everyone in the GOP (go McCain!), the Giants over the Patriots (Yah! In your face!), and now it comes to me. Ever since I have worked at the library I was certain that if I had the opportunity to work there full time on a permanent basis I would snatch that opportunity in a heart-beat. Right now there is such an opportunity. In fact, the position was created largely with me in mind.

Then there is my current full time job. I love the work, but the owner is driving me, and most everyone else that works there, CRAZY!! She is rarely available when I need her to look over something, sign off on something, or do her part of the work in any of the projects that I am so desperately trying to get completed before the deadlines. However, she always has time to hover and get all in your business when her opinion and knowledge is not needed -- uh, I'm the one who taught you how to run this report, thank you very much. She can be very negative, and complains constantly how she never gets time off; but then when we all pitch in and set up times that she can have off, she will try to come in anyway! I actually have to be at work anytime that she is scheduled to have off so that I can make her go home if she does come in. She'll tell people to take some time off and then complain that they aren't there. And when they get back, they'll hear from her about how awful it was because she didn't have any help -- even though a replacement was there and everyone else was helping cover too.

So, you'd think that taking the library position would be a slam-dunk. Right?

Not exactly. It is a night position. That means that my entire social life would be royally screwed. I wouldn't really get to spend time with the other staff, which is part of what makes the library such a nice place to work. And, if I have to go to staff meetings or need to speak with anyone about problems, I will have to come in off schedule.

And, at my current job, I pretty much feel like my own boss. I write my own schedule. If I want to come in late, I come in late. If I want to take an early day, I just do it. I write most of the store policies. I'm in charge of fairly major business decisions. It really is like a well paid business internship/crash course. Speaking of which, I am going to be mighty busy this weekend teaching myself the basics of ledgers!

So, here I am, looking at the realization of the job that I have been wanting for years; only to surprise myself with hesitation. I've pretty much decided, I just don't know how to break it them. Everyone has been counting on me so much, I just don't know how I can face letting anyone down.

Who knew being in high demand could suck so bad?


Shannon said...

Will the position at the library eventually lead to a better, daytime position? It may be worth taking if it were a stepping stone...

"AG" said...

It IS hard to be in demand and have to say no to some people and accept that you will disappoint them. But it's a part of being awesome.

Lyvvie said...

How did you manage to have kids and maintain a social life?!?! All the folks we know who have kids have disappeared. they'll return in time for bridge club, lawn bowling and zimmer-frame races. As far as the job goes, I say keep what makes you happy, lose what drive you nuts; life's too short.

Sylvana said...

Shannon, that is good advice and I have considered it. It might -- in three years. But in those three years JD will be going through high school and would basically never see me during the week unless he visited me at work. That would suck.

AG, yes. But is still good to be awesome ;)

Lyvvie, oh, believe me, when he was young we did not have a social life. He's old enough that we can leave him at home alone now -- plus our friends find him charming and love to have him along.
I so agree with your philosphy about life. The problem there is that they both drive me nuts to some extent and they both make me happy -- but I think that I have come to a conclusion: I have far more control over what drives me crazy at one of the jobs. That makes a HUGE difference!