First Day at ODOT


Well, my first day of full-time work in 10 months was pretty much what I expected — meetings, and watching other people work. In some ways it was the oddest first day on the new job I’ve ever had (and believe me, I’ve had a lot of them!). Why? Because I’ve known some of these people for so many years and worked with them when I was a full-time reporter. There isn’t the usual time spent trying to get to know people or remembering their names. Even a lot of the things they do, like the Traffax, are pretty familiar to me from back when I was the Mr. Traffic columnist for The Oklahoman.

One drawback is that I apparently will have to wear a tie every day. There are few things in this world that irk me the way neckties do. They’re uncomfortable, get in the way, blow in your face if the wind is blowing (and in Oklahoma the wind is always blowing) and dammit, it just ain’t fair that women don’t have to endure them. Don’t gimme that stuff about having to wear pantyhose because none of the jobs I’ve had that have required men to wear ties have specified women have to wear pantyhose. Neckties. Stupidest damn bit of clothing ever! That includes the legwarmers of the 1980s, too.

So, I get an hour for lunch. An hour! That seems unreal. Back at that university, I generally only took 30-minute lunches, and those were often at my desk, so I could leave early because of the kids. Now, I have this hour all to myself. No work. No kids. So I used it to edit Ulrik and will continue to do that for the time being, I guess.

Speaking of the kids, I guess the first day of daycare was a mixed bag. When it was time to stay, they lost some of their enthusiasm for it, Kim said. Both were ready to go when I arrived, but while Amanda went on and on about how much fun she had and how a friend from school was there, Jake was mad and tear-stained. The director said Jake wanted to play on the merry-go-round, but the ground around it had standing water, so nobody got to play on it. Well … the director got a taste of Jake’s temper. Yeah, he gets that temper and stubborn streak from his mother.

I updated the Appearances section of my Web site the other day. Among the things added were my four-hour lecture/workshop for the Kansas Writers Association on April 15. I’m going to talk about how to keep your horror scary, how to pollinate your genre with ideas from other genres, then we’ll do a fun writing assignment and read them aloud.

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5 thoughts on “First Day at ODOT

  1. An hour! That’s an awesome chance to get outside at lunch and go for a walk too – I used to try to do that when I was at the station and it’s a really good head-space thing to do if you can. Maybe edit every second day?
    “Yeah, he gets that temper and stubborn streak from his mother.”
    Oh… really??? I’ll bet Kim has something to say about that!! LOL!
    Oh and… in the 80’s girls wore ties, too. I kina liked them, then again, I wasn’t forced into it and I don’t have to anymore. Aren’t there tie clips and pins you can get to keep them still in the wind??

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