November 9, 2001
business cards AND my first Dirt Company paycheck arrived in the same
California Overnight delivery this morning.
were a surprise, for different reasons.
knew I was going to be getting the paycheck. I've had
the date circled in
bright red Magic Marker on the calendar since the very first moment I
said 'yes' to the job offer. But it turned out to be a surprise anyway,
mainly because this is the first *First Paycheck* I've ever
received, anywhere I've ever worked, that wasn't screwed up in some
phenomenally inconvenient way. Usually the first paycheck is smaller
than I was expecting ... or else it's SIGNIFICANTLY
smaller than I was expecting ... or the wrong number of deductions have
been configured ... or my name is misspelled, so they refuse to cash it
at the Check 'n Chug ... that sort of stuff. But not only was today's
first paycheck right on time, correctly configured and made out to
"Terri Rafter," but it was actually BIGGER than I'd been expecting.
I thought I was going get paid for three days: instead, I got paid for
eight. Bonanza, baby!
(Now I can afford to bring
actual food to the Northern California Internet
Journaler's shindig tomorrow!)
the two 'surprises,' though, I have to tell you that getting the
business cards was the biggest and best surprise. I've never had my own
business card before. (At least, I've never had one that didn't spit out
of an inkjet printer in my laundry room.) I wasn't really expecting
them. JoAnne mentioned something about ordering me cards, right after
she hired me, but the cynic in me didn't think it would actually
happen. The Totem Pole Company promised the same thing, over and over
again, but never delivered. Why should the new place be any
different? Admin staff doesn't usually rate the expense. So it was a
pretty thrilling moment to open the Cal Overnight package and see *my*
name imprinted just above the Dirt Company logo. ("We implement
polyethylene soil sampling so *you* won't have to!")
a timely and accurate first paycheck is great. It says something about
the efficiency and the reliability of the payroll department. But being
given a business card says something about the way the company views
their employees: ALL of their employees, even the
ones who answer phones and muck out refrigerators.
makes me glad I decided to hire on with The Dirt Company in the first
worry. I don't plan to wax orgasmic about the new job in every single
*FootNotes* entry I write between now and the end of my Dirt Company
career. (Which I'm hoping will last longer than "Pasadena.") I'm
already finding plenty of stuff to be not-completely-crazy about -- the
commute, the spooky neighborhood, paper cuts, GBC binding machines,
unctuous Main Marketing Guys with prettier fingernails than *I* have --
all of which you're sure to hear about -- in the usual endless/mindless
detail -- over the course of my Dirt Career. (Plus I've already enjoyed
my first big Fudk- Up Moment. It happened this morning, when the company
president called on his cell phone from corporate headquarters in L.A.
and complained that his personal phone line was down. "Well, I hope you
can get it up again," I replied ... followed by four or five seconds'
worth of mortified silence on both ends.) Sooner or later the honeymoon
will be over and I'll return to what I do best: griping griping
for the moment ... I think maybe I'll just sit here and look at MY
BUSINESS CARD some more.
a great weekend, everybody.