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Help And Help. . .It’s Not Always the Same

January 10, 2020

I flew home from Florida today. I like flying, but it’s also stressful. The flight was pretty turbulant. I had the flight data displayed on the seatback monitors. At times we had a 104 MPH tailwind and then a few minutes later we had a 75 MPH headwind. At 36,003 feet, those winds toss around even the largest plane.

At times, it was almost like a rollercoaster. But, that wasn’t the part that was stressful. The turbulance was a known quantity. I was nervous about the unknown.

I didn’t know if our sites might have an outage while I was on the plane. Starting today, we have a full team backing me up. But, that doesn’t mean my job is any less stressful. In fact, in addition to managing outages, I now am responsible to teach my replacements.

But, if there’s an outage, they’ll manage without me. But, then, I’ll spend days filling out the reports. Their “help” would also mean additional work for me. In fact, more work than if I’d simply managed the outage myself.

It’s mid January and time to put away the Christmas lights on our house. My neighbor and I have coordinated our Christmas lights. It’s one of those where you tune your radio to a local station and the lights are synched to the music.

My neighbor did all the hard work. He did the programming. He told me what to buy and he runs the radio broadcast. I just put up the lights the way he tells me. . .exactly the way he tells me. If I get two of the 30 extension cords swapped, the display won’t look right.

We’ve done the Christmas light display for several years. I am just as careful when putting away the display as when putting it up. Because I know that next November, I’m going to need to put it back up the same way. Exactly the same way.

But, not this year. This year, I had help. While I was enjoying the inside of my windowless call center and the 73 degree weather, my lovely wife and family were removing the Christmas decorations ahead of an approaching snow storm.

So, my garage has my Christmas decorations and lights strewn randomly. Like my outages, it will take longer to put them away than it would have taken me to do the work myself. But, they wanted to help.

And while I dread following up after an outage that I wasn’t able to manage, I can’t help smiling at the thought that my family stepped in to help.

Nope, help and help aren’t the same thing.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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(c) 2019 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved

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