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Category: Work

Push all the paper

It shouldn’t be surprising that there is a substantial bureaucracy attached to Certified Organic products—the National Organic Program is administered by the Federal Government, after all. As an office clerk, I need not know the intricacies of  organic standards or the politics behind them. I’ve always been preoccupied by the intersection of public policy and our food system; what I want is to develop a useful self-educational way to explore its issues.

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This will be my last 50-hour work week; after Saturday, I’ll be back down to one job and have my evenings free. It’s one of the more awkward employment transitions that I’ve made. I was fully expecting to moonlight for months longer, with the possibility of something more permanent at the new place perhaps becoming a solid offer in January. But the offer came after just one week of what was expected to be a half-time job—so I took it, giving three weeks’ notice at my current job.

It’s not the most graceful evolution; the current place is an intimate, highly focused retail setting with a minuscule staff covering all bases at all times. The right kind of person could thrive in that atmosphere; I am not that person. I’m gregarious, but introverted enough that continuous burnout and emotional exhaustion took hold fast, and set me back in other unexpected ways. I also have an impression that the very act of an employee departing can lay bare certain semi-permanent stress fractures in the workplace culture. I love the place, but I really must be going.

I’ll miss the cats, though.

In any case, vague kvetching is not my purpose here. As unpracticed as I am at journaling, public or private, now into my fifth decade of walking the earth, the summer of 2016 seems a ripe enough time to exercise my brain in a new habit. My hope is to turn this sounding board into a more serious writing pursuit—but I expect to start out with a typical hodgepodge of stuff I like as it occurs to me.

Write to me here if the mood strikes you. I may open up commenting later—I’m not entirely sold on the idea. One primary reason I’m changing jobs at all is to get away from a community setting that’s always “on,” and give myself space to reallocate emotional energy. As I said, there’s a bit to sort out. Thanks for reading this far.

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