The Government Food Chain
Alright, so i never talk about work on this thing. ya know, being in the technology field i feel like some of my cohorts would somehow find it... general paranoia based off of THC intake. but today i will describe the deep dark secrets of the government food chain (GFC- everything here gets an acronym)
In the large scheme of things, this place falls under the bureaucracy of the Navy. Its because when US soldiers started contracting all kinds of fucked up VD and other shit that you catch when youre banging european prostitute children, they needed some research and work done on those viruses. it eventually morphed into what it is today, the last bastion of high-tech, high-research focused disease prevention for the US.
So you may or may not know this, but all government employees work on this thing called a pay scale. basically this means that you start at a certain level of salary. then you get promoted into further steps and steps, grade by grade, until you have reached the highest point. all your teachers have the same thing, so thats why they always bitch about not getting paid enough. the pay scale system of course sets up several truths:
1) You will always receive the exact raise, salary, benefits, etc, no matter what your work output is. obviously if you get fired, no dice... but that brings me to my next point
2) No one here gets fired. It takes so much time and planning and budgeting and calculating to hire full time employees in this particular GFC. so that means once youre hired, youre here for the long haul. deeper implications of this issue, however, means that NO ONE gets fired... no matter how less and less you work each year, once youre up there in the payscale chart, youre secure in your job. idiots, uncreative thinkers, conservative politicos who have turf wars, technologically unsavvy IT bosses.... this place is the spot for you. as long as you dont fuck up too badly, youre cool for life. and if you do fuck up sorta badly, then that would be my next point.
3) Everyone at the top who fucks up moves laterally, not down. Thats right, everyone is just asskissing up the food chain to their boss. Hopefully if they actually do real well, in other words take 100% of the responsibility with 0% of the recognition, then you are in line for a promotion. But since bosses dont like their staff to be at the same level, they will be promoted to a different branch. But lets say you blow the SARS response in hong kong or something.... thats pretty bad, but if youve got enough stars on your uniform, you just get moved to HIV or malnutrition or some other shitty branch chief job where you can fuck up again.
4) Lots of Equal Opportunity Employment going on. There is definitely one thing the g-men strive for and that would be hiring people of all different races to work here. There are lots of black ladies in and around the office....which is fine by me, black women love me. Usually they are on phone or computer entry detail. Asians are kinda the lab rats or the IT people. indian guys are usually the phD's running the labs. jews are representing at an alarming rate in high up phD double degree crazy positions of knowledge. the man who is in charge of all response for bioterror scares in the US is a fellow MOT.
4) Just like in old British times, there is a clearly defined and very obvious caste system at this place. this is my favorite part, because for some reason the only cool people in this whole building are at the bottom of the pecking order.
The bottom of the caste system is broken into two categories... janitors and the like are all 100% african american/asian/mexicano. they can be seen checking out the white bitches that roll in here trying to avoid all contact with floor moppers, chain smoking cigarettes ALL DAY long, laughing, havin a good time, etc. There are also like maintenance people, with that 1 or 2 year degree in engineering. They are cool guys but also invade on the younger 20-somethings with their tales of drinking and cavorting around and avoiding college. these people are really the only ones who have any conversation interaction with me during the day. Sometimes i wish they could smoke out with me just so they realize how crunk the local emory dank is.
Sometimes when i am walking through the hallways on my way to one of four places: coke machine, ciggy, bathroom, an actual meeting, i see these secret whispering sessions going on between coworkers. this place has a lot of dark and quiet little corners where there is no foot traffic for minutes at a time.... plenty of time to plot some crazy shit, bitch about a higher-up, or discuss things 'off the record' and 'out of the ears of those around us.' one time i hooked up with this cute little yatch at work... i know youre not supposed to, but it was all good. the next day my coworker was like wanna go have a talk outside? so we stroll to the outside catwalk and she proceeds to tell me who is getting fired friday... yatch being one of them. i couldnt contain my excited glee well enough, whew it was a close call. it was starting to get awkward for like the whole day... anyway the point is, scary shit is discussed in little voices deep in the sub basement hallways here.
That is basically all i can think of so far. This place is a political fiasco and unfortunately i have no fucking interest. But, i do enjoy my day. i get to blog for a good 25% of it. If you havent entered the world of white collar wonder, just remember-- when there is a birthday party, make sure you get a piece of cake every time and of course, wear a rain coat. peace.