‘Shiny Object Syndrome’

Sheraton Hacienda del Mar

Originally uploaded by dcwriterdawn

So, I was at work for maybe four days this week. Who the hell knows. It sucked and I hated it and wanted to die a thousand times.

No, I’m not back at the Den of Iniquity. I’m just coming off of the high of living in Mexico for a week, then living in the Houston Airport for a day (gag) and then dragging my very sick and VERY tired ass through both jet lag AND Daylight Savings.

The only reason I haven’t killed anyone is because that would require having the energy to stab them seven thousand times like they might deserve.

My week in Cabo was … weird. It sure beat any Money Show I worked, although I liked that I could count on hitting Manhattan, Orlando, San Francisco and Vegas (twice!) in any calendar year. Here, I went to Canada (twice!) and Mexico once. UPGRADE!

But … yeah. I bonded with staff. I got a new perspective on people I, well, needed a new perspective on. I went from being supportive for the sake of doing so, to truly championing a particular person. Captivity will do that to you, perhaps. As I said, we needed that bonding time. Perhaps not SO MUCH of it, but it worked out the way it needed to.

Plus, I really had fun talking to all the customers. It was very different from Money Shows. I brought suits, but it was too hot. So I wore dresses and dressy flip-flops. We sat outside in the shade at a table. It sure beat pantyhose, heels and standing all day in a ballroom.

I didn’t see much of my superiors but I did get to know the exhibitors. Which was fun. It all worked out. But while I came back feeling very connected to my people, I feel like I also inadvertently got shoved into an episode of “Revenge of the Nerds.” There are the cool kids, and then there’s the rest of us.

I felt like I got one chance to rush the fraternity. And I didn’t want to. So, I didn’t. Instead, I formed Tri-Lambda and made my own fun.

I saw someone else in a similar conundrum. They chose the fraternity. I think I’m the happier person right now.

I don’t know quite how to explain it, except that you really do have to travel a thousand miles to see what’s in front of you.

This week was hard because of general disorientation on my part. Plus, I’m going to be out of the office all next week. So I had a ton of paperwork, supervision and editorial to shove out the door.

And someone asked me for their “two dollars” today. That they started asking for in September.

I never gave them their two dollars. Because when I offered it four months ago, nobody took me up on the offer.

When they asked for their two dollars, two months ago, I said it was really worth about eight dollars and here’s why. Upon which I was told “I want my two dollars!”

And it’s not that I meant to fail to comply. Just in the grand scheme of things, when you’re responsible for two MILLION on a good month, that two dollars doesn’t mean jack. Especially when “Shiny Object Syndrome” is pervasive, contagious and embedded in the toilet paper. Wait long enough, and you can count on, “What two dollars?”

I got hunted down about five times today for that two dollars. I fell silent. That’s not even the passive-aggressive goddess; it’s the “I’m going to be away for a week and I’m still behind and MY GOD do you people take a check.”

Seriously, TWO DOLLARS.

I finally paid up. In euros, no less. (They’re worth more.) Mostly because I was afraid I’d get a call when we’re driving through Georgia with a heavy breather going, “Two … dollars …”

Here I thought all I needed was a Bumpit and a bitchy attitude to get ahead in business. Who knew that two dollars was all I needed to pledge the fraternity?

In any case, I made a decision after the trip. I don’t give two flying shits about investing. Or publishing, for that matter. I love running events. I love organizational behavior and team management. I love being social and helping customers.

I don’t know what that means for my career. I can coordinate events but that’s not my focus. I can talk to customers but that isn’t, either. I told someone that managing people takes up 60% of my day, and I got some bizarre talking-to about that.

I’m just hoping everyone’s personalities are heightened right now. That was what I told my staff before Money Shows — that you will “meet” your colleagues; rather, the exponential version of them. So-and-so on steroids. So get it in your head right now that people may say and do things that rub your every last nerve raw, but they won’t realize how annoying they are.

And you, yourself will be obnoxious beyond all recognition too. Forgive and forget now, before you have to. And believe me, you will HAVE to.

So once again, maybe I just need to take my own advice.

And maybe, just maybe, I should advance them four dollars so that it’s already in the bank when they come around again. (I hear the Thai baht is the place to be.) Because my mother has lived with me for four years — my patience will clearly outlast anyone’s. And once I’ve accepted that your personality will impact me if I’m not careful, I become immune to it.

That, and I’m too goddamned old to take any of this too seriously.

Here’s to hoping that everyone enjoyed their two dollars and that the joy lasts through my brief return … so that I can call off for the final two days in November with no problems. 😉

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