Big Blue: Week 1

Big Blue: Week 1

Okay, so things sounded a little too good to be true. Yes, many of you (John included) thought I was a wee-bit too optimistic about working for an MNC in China. So call me naive. It’s always been my downfall. Here I was, thinking, “Wow, what an accomplishment. I got hired without the on-site interview.” Slight mistake. IBM’s e-learing division is on the 10th floor of Rui An Plaza, at the corner of the famous Huai Hai Road and HuangPi Nan Road. Very very prestigious location. The good news is that my commute is a bike ride to the metro and four stops north– about 35 minutes. Not bad. Well the bad news is, our team of 15 people is crammed into a room about the size of my dining room and half my living room. In other words, it’s corporate closet space. There are long tables spanning maybe ten feet in length, arranged in parallel, with about three people each table. So I have a co-worker siting right next to me (like we’re eating lunch together in a high school cafeteria) and someone directly behind me– so close that our chairs are constantly bumping. Yeah. BAD NEWS. On top of that, I have a crappy P2 computer that has Chinese Windows 2000 and a crummy, dirty, non-optical, non-scrolly mouse. And my computer freezes and has to be restarted about 4-5 times a day.

So my job there is sorta a blend of writer/editor/project manager. But strangely, they expect me to write in this environment where there is absolutely no privacy or sound proofing. I mean, not even those pathetic cubicle half-walls. So people are listening to audio e-learning clips, talking on the phone, yelling to each other from one end of the room to the other, getting on con-calls— all while I’m trying to fucking write and edit.

I mean, yes the people are nice, and since the office is all Chinese (with some ABCs or CBCs (Canada)), it’s good interaction for me… still, John has spoiled me with wifi at home, a sweet laptop, nice keyboards/mice, etc. I wish I were working at home again. 🙁

Oh well. So this week has been really busy. One of our big clients, Intel, has commissioned all this new employee orientation e-learning stuff. You know what’s so weird? I’ve been tapped to be the “voice” on all their Asia-Pacific materials. That’s right. My shitty, whiney, pep-less voice was chosen by the client. I don’t know what they’re smokin’. So stay tuned… for some future clips. “The Intel Channel Knowledge Builder Program is fast and efficient in delivering e-learning solutions to your employees….” Ha, ha. Cracks me up.

Oh man, I’m sick already. IBM blasts their A/C and despite my efforts to bundle up with a wool sweater, I caught a goddamn cold. Yeah, I had to cancel my class this morning with Frank because I had snot dripping out of my nose and an intolerable headache. God, I’m such a wimp. Fortunately, dad stocked me up with Nyquil and Tylenol Cold. Give me the drugs!! I am feeling better today, but I may take in my hot-water bottle.

By the way, John has already requested reconnaissance pictures of my disappointing work conditions… I’ll try my best.

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