Friday, October 14, 2011

Oh FFS Friday: Because it's there...

Haven't blogged in a couple of days, and wasn't feeling very bloggy... Was browsing Twitter and a tweet caught my eye - tweeted by @DearBabyG;

Oh For Fucks Sake Friday grab the button & link up to join in with the irreverence  

At the time it was tweeted, I was actually scanning for another tweet, so went ahead and skipped onto the next tweet, but later it occurred to me that FFS Friday really speaks for how I'm feeling right now.

I'm not in the habit - recently - of swearing on my blog. My mum doesn't like it, and let's face it, I do it plenty enough when I'm away from the computer, I don't need to do it here. But today, I'm really feeling quite fed up. So today, can you all just please see beyond the swearing, please?

Here are the things that have been pissing me off this week.

1.   A shared post thingy on Facebook which is supposed to be about supporting the right to gay marriage, but reads thusly...

I'm a supporter of gay marriage. Marriage is a commitment and everyone should have the right to commit themselves to another person in this way if they want to - it has nothing to do with religion or raising children (though the particular argument that parents need a mother and a father seems to completely overlook those toxic marriages where mothers and fathers abused each other and their children)...

But this poster is SHITE! First of all, two people committing to one another affects only them. People drinking alcohol, taking drugs, buy porn, owning guns, smoking cigarettes, and depending on your believes about babies, having abortions AFFECTS OTHER PEOPLE. All of those other things can result in the injury or death of another person. They cannot be compared! Comparing them suggests that gay marriage might be harmful to others just like smoking or porn. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot (guns?)... If you're on my Facebook, please, please don't repost this poster - I try and I try, but I can't help myself. It makes me want to post this...

2.   Yesterday I received a call from the speech pathologist at the boys' school. She was ringing in regard to Bryn's speech assessment.

The back story is that Bryn (like Erik and Lukas, but no where near as bad as Lukas) has, since he started talking, mispronounced a bunch of sounds. He's said 't' instead of 'c', and 'd' or 'j' instead of 'g', and so on. This is not uncommon in small children, but in recent years - and I believe mostly because of the push for earlier and earlier literacy acquisition (which all too often is based on phonics) - kindergarten and school teachers have been made hyper-aware of children's speech idiosyncrasies. To me it's a lot like putting braces on 9 year olds - you know before their face is all grown in. It's about aesthetics and western obsession with perfection. But all this focus on being perfect has its side effects (like a flattened face due to extractions causing breathing issues).

As someone whose brother gave up talking completely for two years because he was bilingual and kept speaking the wrong language to the wrong people and being corrected on it, I would rather my boys figure out language for themselves without having their confidence undermined by being told prematurely, 'You're doing it wrong'.

Still and all the kinder teachers voiced their concerns, and I just said, 'You should have heard his brothers!' I'm sure they thought I was being all too flippant about it all. When Bryn started school, his prep teachers (he has two) asked if we'd had him assessed. We said no and I repeated my 'You should have heard his brothers, he's much clearer than Lukas was at this age!'. They gave me that raised eyebrow look.

In term two they brought it up again, and one of the teachers, who is also a parent at the school even sidled up to the Grumpy Old Man to voice her concerns (she probably thought he would be more open than me, ha!). Later a letter was sent home. Eventually we concede - under duress - to have him assessed. We refused to give consent for any psychological or other assessment though.

It has been at least three months since we handed in those forms. After all that pressure, and then it seemed like they'd changed their minds. Evidently not because yesterday I received a call from the speech pathologist. I will meet her next week, but she told me right off the bat that she 'observed nothing of any concern'. I should be relieved, but honestly I'm kind of pissed that we had all that pressure put on us for something we knew from prior experience was not an issue. Even since the beginning of the year Bryn's speech has cleared up a lot.

3.   The final thing I'm going to mention here - though this doesn't end the list of things that has pissed me off this week, I just feel this post is getting quite leggy already - is regarding the Grumpy Old Man's new job, or rather the one we still don't know for sure if he has.

The Grumpy Old Man has been out of work for 2.5 years. He is well qualified as a finished artist/graphic designer, with many years experience. He has many great references, but often he has not even gotten interviews for jobs he's applied for. When he has gotten interviews they have usually led to second interviews, but he has been pipped at the post right at the end.

In May, he took the big decision to change careers, and to take a big pay cut (well, if he was working in the industry he's qualified for, it would be a big pay cut, but seriously considering he's been on a $430 per fortnight parenting pension (partnered) for the past couple of years, anything would be an income improvement now!). He did a course for 10 weeks that gained him a Cert III. Then he found out he needed to do five weeks of work placement (which had originally not been part of the course), so, okay he did that and at the end of that placement he was offered a job - woot!

Well, not quite woot. That job offer came in a month ago, and he hasn't worked a single day yet. The Monday after the job offer was made he went and did a physical. There were forms to fill in and he was asked about pre-existing conditions, so being the honest person he is, he put down the arthritis he has in his knees. Then he did the physical and the nurse was very happy with his performance.

We waited for a call from workplace. A week went by, and on the following Monday he called them and they said the results had been passed onto the HR department in the city and they were just waiting to hear back, we should expect a call by Wednesday. The call didn't come. This last Monday the GOM rocked up to the workplace and they called the HR department in the city who finally informed everyone there was a question mark over the arthritis.

The boss lady who had offered the GOM the job told the HR department that she wouldn't have offered him a job if she didn't think he could do the job. HR wasn't moved. They said they wanted to send out an assessor to do a deeper evaluation of the GOM's knees. That was scheduled for yesterday.

The Grumpy Old Man went and was assessed and the guy who assessed him was impressed with his flexibility and saw no reason the GOM couldn't do the job. He said he would send his report into HR that afternoon and hopefully the GOM would receive a call to start work by late afternoon or early this morning. It's almost 2pm. No call yet.

I can't help but feel that the issue isn't his arthritis at all, but rather his birthdate, the 1959 in the birthdate to be precise. He's 52 and over three quarter of Australian's on unemployment benefits are over 40. There is a most definite discrimination against older workers in this country and it STINKS!

It also stinks that the Grumpy Old Man has four children to support and has changed career, taken a drop in wages and taken on a job most other people wrinkle their nose up at (aged care), and he STILL isn't working. It's October, his course finished in late July, his work placement finished in early September. This sucks. I want that phone call to say, 'Come in and we'll give you your hours.' I want it NOW for fuck's sake!

Linking up with Dear Baby G for FFS Friday! What do you want to get off you chest today?

Dear Baby G


Jay said...

I'm not surprised you're swearing, Sif. I'd be steaming if I had to wait for that long for a potential employer to make a decision. It's huge for you guys. And unfair - what if GOM had more than one job offer and had to make a decision, but can't because they're stalling.

Grrr. I hope there's a resolution before the weekend!

Sif Dal said...

If he had another job offer he'd just forget about this job. The thing is because he's had this job offer and they seem so keen, he hasn't applied for anything else. If they changed their mind now, that's five weeks we've wasted. Grrr, makes me so mad to think about it.

Sarah said...

I'm with you all the way on the FB thing Sif. That kind of stuff is one of my regular gripes and that is a particularly stupid example!

Fingers crossed for you and the GOM. It's outragous that he's being messed about like this, it must be incredibly stressful for you all.

Vic said...

I'm glad that you don't have to go through with speech therapy either, my daughter goes, at 3.5, but she has trouble with a lot of sounds, to the point that other kids find it hard to understand her, so we felt that the sooner we did something about it the better. Luckily she loves the therapy sessions so I don't feel too bad about the whole thing!

I hope your hubby stops getting messed around soon & finds out for sure that he has a job to go to; that sort of discrimination does suck & isn't something we should even have to deal with. Companies that have issues with older workers (perceived issues) obviously don't have any or they would realise how reliable & thorough they are in their work.

Hope the weekend is better for you, enjoy it!

Denyse Whelan. said...

No time at all for potential employers who have no idea of how people are depending on them for ANSWERS.
As for the school system & how "they" thought they knew more about your son's speech than you... WORDS FAIL ME
You. Need. A. Medal.
For keeping your family life together under such strains.
Good on you.
Much admiration

Rhianna said...

Fairy wishes and butterfly kisses to you lovely Sif, hope you have a wonderful weekend and GOM gets news on the job first thing monday morning xx

Sif Dal said...

Sarah, with the new Facebook I seem to be getting more and more of those poster things. Got another one yesterday that riled me up. It depicts Steve Jobs on one side and starving African children on the other and says something along the lines of "One man dies and the world is stunned. Thousands die and no-one gives a shit". Gah, so someone on Facebook determined that anyone who mentioned Steve Jobs death probably doesn't give a shit about the thousands of people on the planet who die unnecessarily every year from starvation on this globe. Of course that person probably cobbled the images together on Photoshop and posted it via their computer which they haven't sold to help feed the starving thousand in Africa - should we deduce from that that that (three that's in a row, go me!) person doesn't "give a shit"? Argh!

Vic, there are definitely children who need speech pathology, a friend's son needed it, so did another friends daughter. Usually the parents are aware of this at some level themselves and agree. Services should not be clogged up with every child who mispronounces their "g" sound at the age of five, especially if the child's parents know from experience the child's language will most likely sort itself out.

Denise, thank you! I keep checking the mail, but no medal is forthcoming - they've probably all gone to people far more worthy than me. We'll get there!

Rhianna, from your lips to the gods ears! We were given a tatts lotto ticket on Thursday for being willing to have an auction pointer sign affixed to our fence. I said to the GOM it would be very ironic if he was finally given the job on Monday and then we won the lotto on Monday night, hahaha!

Dani Castley said...

Sif ..... thankyou for posting on my little blog. You have no idea how excited I was to actually have someone visit. Mostly my blog is an online diary, and I don't have much of a fan base. Your comment lifted my day.

Good Job!