B is for Bravo

No prompt today. I have a funny (part) of a conversation from a call yesterday at work. I was asking for a serial number for a product. Just to keep it completely anonymous I am not saying who I work for or what the product is. You never know…

Me: “Can I please have the serial number of your ______, please? It will start with B like Bravo”
Customer: “What?? B like Basil? What do you mean”
Me: “The letter B like Bravo, sir”
Customer: “B like Basil?? What’s that? Basil, what’s that word. I’ve never heard of it before.”
Me: “B sir, B like Bob.”
Customer: “B like what?? Bob, you mean Robert? B like Robert?? Robert doesn’t start with B.”
***a pause while I rack my brain for what to say***
Customer: “B like Boy?”
Me: “Yes sir, B like Boy.”
Customer: “What the fuck… B like Robert, Robert doesn’t start with B, what the hell. Why would you say Robert…”
Me: “No sir, I said Bob, B like Bob, short form of Robert. Bob. The Letter B”
Customer: “I’m not stupid. I know Robert’s the short form of Bob. Robert doesn’t start with B though. I’m not stupid.”
***Well ya, I’m not going there…***
Me: “Okay, can you locate the serial number? It’s on the top of the ______?”
Customer: “Why’d you say Basil for, I mean that word… it’s just odd. Why would you say that”
***sounds like he is almost ready to cry at this point… I know I am…***
Me: “Sorry sir, I was saying Bravo not Basil, Bravo – B R A V O.”
Customer: “What the… I don’t know why you keep saying Basil. I told ya I don’t know…”
***for some reason I felt the need to explain myself. Bad choice.**
Me: “Never mind sir, it’s B like Boy. I was just saying the Phonetic Alphabet for B.”
Customer: “But why’d you say Basil, if it’s B like Boy?”
Me: “I wasn’t saying Basil sir. Either way it’s B, the second letter of the alphabet.”
Customer: “Well why the fuck didn’t you say B?” ***mumbles “Basil” really softly under his breath, sounding very exasperated***
Me: “I’m sorry sir, I did say B”
Customer: “What the hell…”
Me: “Can we move on, sir…”

Sink or Swim – Part 2

I obviously can’t go into as much detail about all parts of my stay at KAF (Kandahar Airfield) or it would be a long ass post. But I thought the plane ride was kinda symbolic.

After getting through the gates, we went on a bumpy and slightly smelly bus ride across the base to pick up our PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), which consists of a duffle bag filled with a protective vest (Kevlar possibly, I don’t remember) and helmet, a gas mask and a flash light. This was to be stored under our beds and donned if you are close enough to it when the sirens go off, which happened again while picking up our PPE and trying it on. After 2 minutes face down on the ground with my arms over my head. I head to a concrete bunker and hang out till the all clear siren.

Next we go get our ID’s and travel around the outskirts of the base, safely just inside the walls to get a view of everything, including the “Shit pond”, which is a small lake that was filed with human waste, cooking oil and grease. The smell gets whipped around the base with the desert winds. It can get quite ripe. But like anything you get used to it. Till you get home to Canada (or where ever) anyways and can not get the smell out of your hair, skin, clothing, and baggage, no matter how much you scrub, wash and rinse. Eventually it fades on skin and hair, for most, in time to go back to KAF after vacation.

Sink or Swim – Part 1

I decided that I did not like the blog prompts much on BlogHer. So I have decided to find my own. I think the idea is to just write every day and I think that’s all that matters.

So today’s prompt comes from The Daily Post @ WordPress.com called Sink or Swim. Tell us about a time when you were left on your own, to fend for yourself in an overwhelming situation — on the job, at home, at school. What was the outcome?

This was a decision I made so in a way it’s not really “sink or swim” but in a way it is. Depends on how you look at it. Once I got there and realized where I was and what I was doing, it really did become a “sink or swim” situation. Jury’s still out on the outcome.

In March of 2009 I hopped on a plane in Ottawa and flew to Dubai, United Arab Emirates and then on to Kandahar, Afghanistan. My mission? To work on the base in Kandahar for 6 months as civilian support. I was 29 years old and this was the furthest from home I had ever been. I only had one week preparation before being shipped off with about 15 other men and women I did not know to a place I had never been to a climate I was not prepared for and a situation that kind got out of hand.

Do you see the glass as half empty or half full?

I think I’m the kind of person that see’s the glass as half full. I’d like to think that I am an optimistic person by nature.

My parents taught me from a young age that in every situation there are always multiple ways to look at things, even bad situations. You can dwell on them or you can learn from them.

It has not always been like that for me though. One thing that has been a constant point of frustration in my life since high school is the I get bored easily with a job. I loose interest. I get disheartened and feel like I am never performing up to my abilities.

Lately though that seems to be changing. Instead of looking at it in the “glass half empty” way and always feeling like I am coming up short, I have been able to turn it around and feel like I am pushing to see my limits and that the glass is “half full”. I am able to use stuff constructively and set out a goal plan for myself. Which makes me feel more optimistic.

I recently applied for two positions internal positions within our project, one a month or so before the other. I did fairly well on the first one but did not get the position.

More or less likely to complete…

Do you think you’re more or less likely to complete December’s NaBloPoMo – December 2013? Why?

I guess I think I am less likely to complete December’s NaBloPoMo. I believe there are multiple reasons but the top 3 are that: 1) I don’t always have the time 2) I forget to post and 3) I get too lazy to post.

I worked 9-5 this morning. I like to sleep. A lot. So I always wake up as late as possible giving myself only enough time to get a quick shower, get dressed and run out the door. There’s no way I’m getting up before work to post. I can’t think straight enough in the mornings to post anything anyways. My sleep/pain medication makes me to dopey.

I really had to push myself to post this before bed. I’m only doing it because I have the WordPress app on my iPhone that makes it fairly easy to post entries, read comments, etc. I don’t feel like unhooking my laptop from the TV and finding a place to sit and write (ie. Lazy).

I feel lately like I’m on the go all the time, never enough hours to the day. When I’m not on the to I’m too exhausted to get off the couch and do anything.