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Tuesday is my Friday. I got to work. I got to monitor. Joy! Whee! I had five people to monitor, which stretched into seven sessions (with one restart, because it was just a day like that) and then I got to validate.

After we're done with a survey for the day, one of the monitors or supervisors gets to call back a certain percentage of the households spoken with, to verify that a) surveys have actually been done with the household, and b) they were carried out properly (something resembling the proper demographic and screening information was entered, and the phone goon's attitude was reasonably professional and polite). We were dreadfully backed up on one survey. No one had done validations at all for that survey since the beginning of the month, and getting everything validated on that took well over an hour. I was under the impression that we could only call for validations until 8 local time (we can call for surveys until 9 or 9:30) and wound up getting all but one validation on that job done before taking my break at 7. (It transpired that we could call after that, so I got the last one done after my break, much to everyone's happiness.)

After that, I spent a diverting five minutes or so talking to someone else's 87 year old grandmother out in Sun City about the survey about insurance that she'd done. Quite a bit of it was explaining the purpose of the survey to her (no, not to get her to change insurance companies, but to get her honest opinion of the company she had) and the rest was mostly smiling and being very happy to talk with her and make sure the person had done their job right (they had).

By the time I was done validating all the things I could validate, it was seriously time to clean up. Cute Chick Monitor and I have the same schedule. "Thank goodness it's Friday," she said as we were counting out the headsets and briefing/debriefing each other on the shift and on local events (why am I the bearer of bad tidings?); this informal sort of thing, which would be called "gossip" by the unenlightened, is vital to smooth functioning of the monitoring team. (She and I both have Wednesdays and Thursdays off; I've noticed that the worst of the "The monitors are going to wrack and ruin!" e-mail commentary happens in reaction to Wednesdays and Thursdays, which gives me a certain level of concern for the rest of the team, but makes me very happy about doing my job well.) We discuss things that are likely to have impact on the smooth running of the monitors, but yet are not crucial enough to send official e-mail about, or are personal and therefore shouldn't technically have anything to do with the workplace, but the personal often does affect the workplace, even if it's just that someone's likely to be out for a while because his wife died. (I wish I had gotten a chance to know her. Cute Chick Monitor hadn't even known that Figment was married.)

New monitors are being recruited; I submitted one suggestion based on my general "OK, I'm Officially Impressed Now reaction after monitoring the person and having them consistently rock my socks. I got e-mail back saying they'd look into it. *grin* You know someone's good when their performance on a bad day is something you'd overlook as "normal" in 90% of the people on the floor, except you know their quality of work, and you're so concerned as to check up on them and make sure they're OK in person afterwards.

Blond Mohawk Monitor (new to the monitoring team, and someone I've looked upon with favor for a while) was on the phones today, on one of the generally more dreadful surveys, and was jokingly asking me to pull strings and get them off the phones and go home early. What strings? <azzgrin> It shows a lot about my maturity level that my last action before leaving was to flag Blond Mohawk Monitor's attention, and make the face where I stick out my tongue, cross my eyes, and waggle my fingers from my ears. (He did snicker, but did not do so on an open line, and thus did not have to explain, "I'm sorry about that, my supervisor was making faces at me.")
Gone away, gone ahead,
Echoes roll unanswered.
Empty, open, dusty, dead.
Why have all the Weyrfolk fled?

Where have dragons gone together
Leaving weyrs to wind and weather,
Setting herdbeasts free of tether;
Gone, our safeguards, gone, but whither?

Have they flown to some new weyr
Where cruel Threads some others fear?
Are they worlds away from here?
Why, oh why the empty weyr?

-- "The Question Song", Anne McCaffrey
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