Monday, August 23, 2010
It never fails. When I have a presentation something goes wrong. I'm not one of those people that have problems presenting. I get a little nervous, say things like "I'm shooting for not sucking", and then get up there and look and sound comfortable, mostly. (Unless it was my defense, in which I was bawling by the end, because I got a half hour intro.)
2 blocks from work, a bird crapped on my head. Like smack dab on the top of my head. I went into my coffee shop, which, because the normal woman is on FMLA, is not quite my favorite place to be anymore. I washed the poop out of my head in their bathroom, and then went to get a drink, because the frou-frou coffee machine is still out at work. Here's the thing: I don't like the new barista, she make a great cup of coffee, but she's kind of stand-offish. So I get up to the counter, order an iced latte and she actually gives me guff about not getting a hot cherry mocha, which I usually get. To which I say that if she already made it, I'll take it instead (which I felt was the right thing to do, because I had that job in college, and I know how odd it is to get one of the regulars not ordering the regular). But she didn't have it, she had a normal mocha which the woman in front of me forgot to order iced, which made me believe that she was just going to add cherry to it.
So, my calming morning routine was upset.
My boss is super supportive. He likes to come over to my cube and tell me how good I am doing, and how excited he is about my data. If I were a normal person, I'd be excited about having good things coming from the boss. Maybe I've been in academia too long. Maybe I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. Maybe I'm waiting for them to realize that I'm not qualified for this job.
I went through a version of my presentation with my boss early in the day, reminding him that I was waiting on some other things to be done, that I would likely add. He liked it as is.
When I presented, he was giddy because I had fresh off the presses stuff. I flubbed some questions (I can never remember concentrations, I always remember dilutions. That is, 500x dilution, have no idea what stock is, but can look up).
Boss was still super excited, to point where he wants me to help with some other stuff, and wants me to present at bigger meeting. Is this a good thing?
I have this rule that no matter how often I have to present at a meeting, I'm going to show something new. It doesn't matter how little or insignificant it is, I need to show progress. I think that I'm going to have to step up my game a bit. I don't know, is this how this works? I feel like what I got accomplished is so little and so simple with the tools I have available to me. Everyone else seems excited. Should I lower my standards to be in line with everyone else, or should I keep it up? Part of me thinks that there is something else going on, but that could just be paranoia lingering from feeling like I don't deserve this job.
Also, and this is kind of unrelated, I encountered someone that wouldn't sign for something the other day because she didn't know what it was. She's a scientist, we knew who it was for, that he had left, and what it likely was. She didn't feel comfortable about it. WTF? I have signed for blood, stuff from other countries, hell, I've even signed for a machine so big, that I put "Kiss Coffin" ads all over it and convinced the department that the professor had a Kiss Coffin shipped to lab because she was such a big Kiss fan. (N.B. she's a tiny Indian professor that I'm not sure knows who Kiss is). She made me get my boss to find someone else to sign for it, and when he pointedly asked her to sign, she said she didn't feel comfortable. Is this normal? (I didn't sign for it, because I didn't have signing power.)
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