Back up in the control center again today. As it was a holiday I was hoping I could run the desk so I could have a chance to get more relaxed into the position.
I did, and it worked. I only panicked once and just briefly.
On a holiday there are minimal square staff and no education and few work crews and very seldom any extra whoop-de-doo going on. So both counts would be fairly easy.
Of course almost anybody could do the count up there with minimal training on a calm day when nothing is happening. If I can learn it, anybody can.
It's those days when you have three fights and two 10-5's and six emergency outcounts and an assault and they decide to lock up six inmates at 9:59pm that your true colors show out. Then stuff gets real exciting and you have erased and rewritten your numbers until the paper is tissue thin and the Captain is up there leaning over your desk wondering WHY count hasn't cleared yet.
Those are the days you fear and dread and train for and hope they never come. But if you stay up there long enough they will come eventually.
This evening it was me and Meanie and Sgt Puddle. About 9:00pm, Sarge had to run over to central to deliver some paperwork or something, leaving me and Meanie up there by ourselves. i got my count sheet out and started crunching numbers. Laundry was clear and the only thing I had left was Medical and Mr Toad called his count from there early.
I added up all my numbers and whoops..... That's not right. I was way off. Took a deep breath and started again slowly and carefully and re-added everything. This time it came out right. Whew! That was close.
When I said it all added up, Meanie said "Hey, it's 9:45! We got this!"
I said "Don't jinx me. I've seen the whole world go to snit at 9:59 before. Not from up here, but from out there. All I know is that the people up here tend to get real testy when that happens. It aint pretty."
Sgt Puddle came back right before count and I gave him a thumbs up. I think he stayed away just to see if I could handle it by myself. I did, but like I said, this was an easy night.
All in all it was a good night. Peggy Sue stopped by to visit and I got one of those big squeezy hugs that always make me feel warm all over. Got to go out and smoke with her and chat for a few minutes. It's always nice seeing the Boss Lady.
I have heard rumors that Miz Avon is talking about bidding back in the control center. That should be a good thing. I think she worked up there for awhile and did pretty good. All we need now is for Miz Twang to get better and come back to work and we will have a full crew up there again. Then maybe I can go back to being a utility infielder.
Maybe some day soon they will have enough people that they won't need me anymore. That will be fine, too.
I didn't start this with an eye towards being up there full time. I wanted to learn enough about it that if things went south maybe I could step up and try to fill in a gap. I haven't quite done that yet, but I think I'm getting there.
And yes, I am trying to assuage some of the guilt I felt for bailing on Sgt Banty that one night. Now I am desperately trying to say enough "Hail Mary's" to atone for that misdeed. Not being catholic, I don't know for sure how many is enough. I guess when I get good enough that I can handle one of the rough nights I'll know when it's enough. And if I can bail somebody out of a jam some night then I know it will have been enough.
All I can do for now is just keep on trying.
Tuesday is going to be Fight Procrastination Day. I was hoping to put that off until later, but there it is. It's also going to be Another Look Unlimited Day. That seems like a worthy effort.
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