Countdown

Today I got a call from the state auditor’s office. They definitely want to hire me and they have emailed me what the benefits are. They are requesting my salary requirements (and I assume we negotiate from there). I have never had to give an initial salary request. So I went to my trusty professor of tax from WWU and she is currently contacting a different state auditor to get the low down.

She was surprised there was such flexibility (I had called her, hoping she would know). She left a message for the gentleman, and she will hopefully call back tonight with some info. I do have a range (I was also hired as a ASA2, not an entry level ASA1), but I am not sure if splitting the difference and asking for halfway through that range is too much.

Another big bonus of this new job, living in Everett, its that much cheaper rent wise then Seattle, but not as expensive as Bellingham for other day to day things. It means we will have to move eventually (as long as this pans out), I do hate moving, but it is worth it for this.

In addition the state offers six health care plans. The most expensive of the plans is less then half the price for BOTH me and heresyoftruth then my current plan is for just for heresyoftruth (she costs $450 a month for just herself, the highest state plan only costs $218 FOR BOTH OF US).

If this works out, I will make less cash monthly, but my hourly wage would be higher, there would be a lot more flexibility and no busy season.

I better go, the WWU professor is calling with some more advice on this.

Disappointing Work Update

I will make this pretty quick. There has been two rather disappointing things that have occurred this week. I do dislike the job, and I have already gone on ad nauseum about the other issues.

1. Monday I was given back an extended return. Basically earlier this month we had thrown together numbers for the return to be sent in with the extension. Not a big deal at all. I got it back and was told to ensure that the personal business showed no profit. Basically report all income, but only enough expenses to offset that income to zero. This is technically legal, althouh the IRS hates when people don’t report all their losses. So I turned to my boss and asked if he was sure. The losses were close to $300,000 and who doesn’t want at least carryover for the next year? He said no, don’t report any losses. “We don’t want the IRS to look at him closely, because of the sale we did last year.”. Now, there is nothing technically illegal about what we are doing, however it somehow bothers the ethical socialist in me. Why are we worried about IRS interest? I mean if everything is legit, this should give him some benefit over the next few years. It left me a little discontented, but its somethin I have to do.

2. The second issue is even more frustrating. I was originally told when I was hired that we would be going to 4 10 hour shifts in May. That is still the case, however we are still going to have to check email, voicemail, and check in 2-3 times each Friday. In addition we cannot take Fridays off where there is a deadline, or if a client is coming in (which is about 30% of the time). If there is a holiday (such as Memorial Day), we will only get 8 hours of credit, not 10 for the day taken off and we will have to make up the 2 hours on another day. There were about four other small bullet points on restrictions for 4 10 hour shifts. Its disappointing and I think for the most part I am just going to keep the 5 8 hour days (although on a good note I get to wear jeans/t-shirt on those Fridays).

Just relaying some of the disappointments.

Days left…13

Days left of hell: 13

Dream Stuff

First lets cover the dream. I had a strange dream that involved me, heresyoftruth, and some random people. It felt like it was taking place somewhere in early 20th century (maybe even late 19th). We were both quite a bit older (probably late 50’s or more).  We were going to medical school. We had somehow snuck past the entry requirements and heresyoftruth was there purely to show that a woman could do it.

Then it switched to heresyoftruth and myself living in a farmhouse. I get the impression it was the same dream, it was just when we were home. We both went downstairs to clean it out, carrying oil lanterns. It was a very tiny set of stairs and down below felt very old, filled with rats and snakes. Funnily enough there was a shadow of Orpheus tracking us, he seemed to be scaring off some of the rats/mice, and I kicked the remaining vermin away. Thats pretty much where it ended (or at least where my memory of it now ends).

Stuff – AKA WONDERFUL WIFE

The other thing I just wanted to comment on was how wonderful my wife is. She takes care of me, is supportive and is an awesome person. I don’t need anything else in this world. The fact that she puts up with my insanity with this overtime, and my inability to focus is just that much more I owe her for.

Tax Job Schedule

Yesterday went really really well. I ran a Shadowrun game that lasted about 8-9 hours after a late start. Unfortunately it ended up with ashcake and talkswithwind getting out of here late, but hopefully they will forgive me for it. The game had a pretty good pace, and I enjoyed the RP, even though it looks like at some point there might be a throw down between members (actually I think things have been smoothed over partially, til after the next couple of runs, hopefully by then differences will be worked out). I have put in an hour or so of working on system mechanics today, with having a full group of people interested it really does energize me to work on things.

Work went well this week. At the end of my shift Friday I was given two actual tax assignments (simple things) but no one was able to show me how to get the returns and get our programs to start running them. That means when my peer advisor gets in on Monday he will show me. Friday I started my shift just a little bit before 7am, got out at 3:30pm and was home just a couple minutes after 4:00pm. I am trying to get in the habit of going in early, because during busy season (starting February) I am going to have to work long days, I am hoping by coming in earlier I will be able to get out somewhere around 6 or 7pm, not 8-9pm. Although I am thinking maybe sticking to going in at 8, that way I can match hours with heresyoftruth better. So I guess I am saying thats still sort of up in the air.

Oh, I found out what the “chargeable hours goals” for my position are. These are the number of hours per month my company would like working on actual client returns (they bill the clients by how many hours I spend on it, somewhere around $250-$300 an hour starting out – more for more detailed work, of course I don’t quite see 10% of that, but hey I hear there are bonuses). So these hours do not represent going to meetings, checking email, doing any company work. Now, these numbers do not include the 160 hours of paid time off I get, and unfortunately I cannot take that paid time off during busy seasons and this does not include normal office duties that aren’t chargeable. I believe if you come close but do not make your goal, nothing bad happens, and I heard rumor when you make your goal you get good bonuses, I will find out and report back next week.

  • January 80 hours (easy to do, two weeks at full time work can cover this)
  • February 235 hours (since I want one day off a week to recharge – Sundays, it means this has to be spread over 20 weekdays and 4 saturdays, thank god for leap year). This comes out to about 20- 11 hour days and four four hour days. This is honestly not too bad, I can stay a little less then 11 hours a weekday and work a little more on saturdays, but its about 58 hours a week, still tough. No vacation time is possible during this month.
  • March 275 hours (21 weekdays, and 5 saturdays), this comes out to about 65 hours a week (plus an extra two days at a total for 15 hours). I am thinking I am going to have to work 12 hour weekdays at least, that way Saturdays are 8 or less hours. No vacation time is available this month.
    April 1-15 135 hours (11 weekdays and 2 Saturdays) this comes out exactly like above, 12 hour weekdays and two Saturdays to make up the time. The unfortunate part is my time for these two weeks may even go higher if we are behind as a company. No vacation time is available these two weeks.
  • April 16-30 75 hours, less then full time so by working just ten shifts I can get this. Plus at this point I can start taking vacation time. I might take a week off since I earn basically 14 hours of vacation a month starting January 2nd. This is also when I start studying for the Washington State CPA exam, I want to take and pass all four parts by August if possible, for the bonus and the ability to have my job pay for the exam and study materials (several thousand dollars for this combined).
  • May 145 hours, this is less then the 160 hours normally worked in four weeks, not too bad.
  • June 115 hours, even less then May for the goal.
  • July 140 hours, less then full time
  • August 145 hours, less then full time, but we are now building up to fall tax season because October is the end of six month extensions on taxes due last April.
  • September 165 hours, a little over full time, but can be matche.
  • October 170 hours, a bit more over full time, but still nothing compared to March
  • November 90 hours, drops down, plus holidays are in here
  • December 80 hours as year slows and begins its cycle at the beginning of this list.

I got an email from a friend, they make a bit less overall money working for the state, but they don’t work any of these hours at all (they just work 40 a week and have vacation). However, my current employer seems pretty cool, and the people are nice, I will see if the bonuses and promotions make up for the lack of life, one thing I have to do is not let my frustrations come out on heresy, I love her too much so everyone keep me on my toes about it please. If this is too much, within 24 months I will get a government job, just trying to get the 2 years as a public accountant minimum for some of the cool jobs I have seen posted.

I hear the wife moving around, maybe I will go snuggle a bit more.

Long Update

I woke up this morning incredibly angry. I don’t mean “in a bad mood”, I am talking a rip-roaring I would like to crush someone’s nose under my fist anger. I do feel much better now, the wife and I went to the mall and got her some shirts, she then got me fed.

I am sure some of my anger comes from no time, finals decompression, and the fact we just got our electricity bill (double what it normally was), it just adds up. Actually I was angry enough that I called up work and cancelled coming in today (and no, I don’t want to run a game or have visitors today either, just not in the head-space to share my world paradigm with anyone but W, I love the rest of you, but we had already planned not to play today so this wont change anything except it will give me a breather from all my responsibilities, game still on 23rd). Mostly I cancelled today with work because there is no way I could handle my manager.

There is a lot of ranting, to save your friends page and to avoid making you have to read my inane ramblings I will cut most of it. I will post about school after I get my grades finalized (and that is another stress factor, how the fuck long does it take to grade a multiple choice test)

I will start with the Xmas Party. The wife and I have both been a little tense about this. Anyone who knows me, knows I don’t really fit in with the upper class. I like my coworkers, but there is not very many of them I have any similarities with.

The wife and I started Saturday looking for presents. We are supposed to buy $10 presents each for a blind gift exchange. This was annoying because when I signed up for the Xmas party, I was told there were no gifts required. I don’t have a problem spending $20 total, but honestly we are still pulling ourselves out of the hole, and I hate the consumerish pressure that gets given out at Christmas.

We end up going to the “Lucky Monkey”. It’s downtown, and its a very neat little import/kitchey type of shop. After several minutes of looking for two $10 gifts  we end up getting two identical presents, they were little wooden gift boxes with different types of tops (different designs). In each one we bought a “lucky kitty” statue and a Guatemala Worry Doll to fill up the box.

We leave the house at 5:30pm, the dinner is at some restaurant named “Grammy’s”. We get there at 5:45 (party starts at 6pm). There we met Dr. C and his wife. Dr. C is an awesome older man, his wife is very nice, but I think very aware of her station. We stood around looking scared (wife and I) as more and more people arrived. Soon it was packed with 26+ people, I knew half, the other half were of course the first half’s significant others. The wife and I both still kind of stood around, not really fitting in we were talked to by a few of the workers, and my manager, but not for very long. 

The wait/cook staff actually talked to us quite a bit more, we all discussed the world and how things were going and in short I was pleased with the mingling we did with the staff.Dr. C’s wife seemed a bit put off by the fact that wifey and I did not drink, we asked for non-alcoholic drinks (which the staff happily gave us).

Dinner came (an hour after the party officially started, we were starving). We sat next to P and her husband G (names hidden for their privacy). They are both pretty nice (P is the one who works my M-Th shifts now that I am in class). Her husband works as an engineer for a security firm and they both seem very down to earth. L (a dental assistant), El and her Husband (also a dental assistant sat with us along with Dr. C and his wife).

Dinner was awesome, I take my hat of to Grammy’s. True, Gabe cooks better, it by no means diminishes how well they did. I had a vegetarian alfredo dish with Portabello Mushrooms. It was good (but would have later effects I may or may not go into). Dinner at the table went by relatively smoothly, the wait staff kept checking up specifically on me and W and I think it annoyed Dr. C’s wife that they didn’t ask her nearly as much if things were going ok. Its sad, even though I know in my future as a CPA I will have to go to shindigs like that, I would rather be on the other side of the register (working as part of the staff), I am just not comfortable with the official dinner like proceedings.

Oh I forgot to mention the wife and I never approached the appetizer bar before the dinner, it was surrounded by coworkers/significant others and they wouldn’t let the work staff in to refill the appetizers, it was like they didn’t even notice the work staff. I always wondered if thats how it was (you hear it sometimes in movies and books that the help are “invisible”).

After dinner Dr. C’s wife announced that three of the plates (one at each table) had a note under it saying “Merry Christmas” it meant whoever had it won the christmas center piece at each table (really was looking to me like a Kmart center piece of red and green, although I am sure it came from a upper income store). For some reason at our table no one had a note, so Dr. C’s wife had us all pick numbers.

I ended up winning it, however just as I won it, someone at another table had a second note (the notes were not evenly distributed). I told Dr. C’s wife by all means give the center piece to that person, they won it fair and square. Later El commented how gracious I was, I neglected to tell her I thought the center piece was horrible looking and I didn’t want it to begin with, she didn’t need to know that.

After the meal we were informed that we were to go back to Dr. C’s house. The wifey and I got outside and found it incredibly funny to see all these new cars (Lexus SUV, Mercedes Sedan, brand new Ford Ranger pickup) and then there was our rusted out 1989 GMC pickup. We were amused because we knew out of 13 cars, we had the only one paid outright. Sometimes I just look at the money people spend on “high end” products, I just don’t even understand.

We got to Dr. C’s house and it was huge. It was wired for outdoor music, and literally couldn’t have been smaller then 5,000 square feet (and I am sure it was quite a bit bigger then that). It was on prime beach front property and the inside everything was “Neiman Marcus” style. The only really funny thing was there were pictures of their dog “Buster” everywhere.

Now, during this whole time Dr. C would go out of his way to entertain everyone. Please do not confuse my amazement at the height of consumerism going on to imply that Dr. C was nothing but a very genial host who made sure to talk to us repeatedly and to try and make us feel welcome (Dr. W and his wife also were very very nice, Dr W’s wife was a very down home kind of feeling to her, I like her alot).

Dr. C went out of his way several times during the night to offer me and W something first (refreshment, pie, etc). This was going fine and there were numerous tiny conversations we had with others that will probably get talked about over time. Eventually there was the “gift giving” phase. It consisted of us setting all of the gifts in the middle then drawing random numbers. The idea was, when it was your turn you could select a gift and open it. There were two additional gifts (given by Dr. C’s wife), one was a “very good gift” the other was a “gag” gift. Those gifts could not be opened. A person would select a gift they wanted. The next person in line could then either take the first person (or any previous person’s) gift or take a new one. There were lots of funny moments (the digital tire air pressure gauge was very popular and even though it was taken from W by Dr C’s wife (who didn’t even really want it, she just did it to stir things up) I was able to get it back for her and secure the REI card.

It was a cut throat game though, I didn’t think anyone would really push to get those two “unopened” but I saw no holds barred greed as people kept grabbing for those two gifts. Actually it kind of made me sick, it seemed inappropriate for a “Christmas” party, somehow I think Jesus would not approve.

As the party wound down I talked with Dr. W about what I was doing next week. He mentioned that we were very short on time and things had to be done in 10 work days. I looked at him confused and mentioned that the manager had said it would take much longer. Dr. W’s wife looked unhappy for a brief second that my manager thinks that. I then reassured Dr. W that I would take care of it. for him

This means I may be working a lot of hours next two weeks (although part of me wonders if it wont be that bad).

The wife and I then left, came home whereupon I spent most of the night with my stomach/reflux killing me.

So here I am exhausted, in a bad mood from lack of sleep and unable to do anything but nap.

Doctor faces charges of inappropriate photography

Just had an article in the paper about McCallum, here is the link and the article itself:  http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/227976_doctor10.html  yes, another nail in his coffin.

OLYMPIA — A Bellingham doctor facing discipline for allegedly dispensing old flu shots also is accused of inappropriately photographing a young patient, state regulators said.

Dr. Gary McCallum may request a settlement or hearing on the new charges but has not yet answered the new complaint, Lisa Noonan, a program manager for the state Medical Quality Assurance Commission, said Wednesday.

Last fall, the commission charged McCallum with administering expired flu vaccine. In February, he was accused of a half-dozen other infractions, including sexual contact with a patient and stealing merchandise from local stores.

On May 24, the commission accused McCallum of photographing a child’s genital area.

A phone message at McCallum’s Bellingham medical practice said the office had closed May 23.

Read more: http://www.seattlepi.com/local/article/Doctor-faces-charges-of-inappropriate-photography-1175667.php#ixzz218SLCiqF

 

Karma is a bitch redux!

Here is the link to the most current story: http://news.bellinghamherald.com/stories/20050205/TopStories/229855.shtml

Here it is in italic

Accused physician faces new charges Sex, theft allegations follow probe into expired flu shots

Mary Lane Gallagher, The Bellingham Herald

The Bellingham doctor accused of giving patients expired flu shots last year now faces new charges of unethical conduct, including unwanted sexual contact with a patient and theft.

Gary McCallum of Barkley Village Family Medical Clinic is also accused of providing negligent care, allowing unlicensed medical practice to take place in his office and poor record-keeping, according to the Medical Quality Assurance Commission.

The commission, which licenses doctors and other health-care providers, added the new charges to those filed last year alleging that amid the flu shot shortage, McCallum and his staff injected patients with vaccine made for the 2003 flu season and was therefore ineffective in 2004.

Some of the new allegations came to light during the investigation of the flu shots, said Donn Moyer, spokesman for the Washington State Department of Health. Others were brought forward as a result of the surrounding publicity last fall, he said.

McCallum referred a call for comment Friday afternoon to his attorney, who could not be reached for comment.

The licensing commission alleges McCallum had sexual contact in July 2001 with a patient who was seven months pregnant and had originally come to the doctor to be tested for sexually transmitted diseases.

McCallum called the woman at home that night, telling her to come to his office immediately because she had high levels of bacteria that needed to be treated or the baby would be at risk, the commission said. He asked her to come to the office by the back door, according to documents released by the commission.

McCallum allegedly had the patient undress and kneel on the examining table facing away from him, with her head resting on her folded arms so she could not see the object the doctor was using in the vaginal exam. She later went to the hospital to report she was raped, and a labial swab showed sperm was present, the documents say.

The commission also accuses McCallum of several instances of theft between 2000 and 2002, for which he received deferred prosecution, Moyer said. The documents allege McCallum concealed an espresso machine in an empty box in his grocery store shopping cart, left a grocery store with $116 in groceries without paying for them and put a Dictaphone pedal in his backpack at a business supply store.

The commission also charged McCallum with inappropriately treating a patient’s migraine headaches with repeated doses of the highly addictive drug Demerol. And some of McCallum’s staff members administered injections without the proper license to do so, the commission said.

Finally, the commission provided more information about the flu shots McCallum administered to patients last year. Commission records state he and his staff injected 71 people with vaccine he told investigators he had purchased from a clinic in Surrey, B.C., last year. But, the commission said, he took the vaccine doses from the clinic without permission.
The commission will hear McCallum’s case and decide on a punishment if a settlement can’t be reached before that, Moyer said. The commission has the power to impose sanctions or revoke McCallum’s license.

If his license is revoked, he may apply to get it back in 10 years, Moyer said. 

Karma is a bitch!

The doctor I worked for got charged with six more charges. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. Here is the link: http://www.king5.com/localnews/stories/NW_020405WABdoctorchargedKC.77cabffc.html

here is what it said for those too lazy to click the link:

    BELLINGHAM, Wash. – A Bellingham doctor, accused of giving out expired flu vaccine, now faces a host of new charges. The Medical Quality Assurance Commission and the State Department of Health have filed the following six new charges against

Dr. Gary McCallum: alleged sexual contact with a patient, providing negligent care to patients, poor record-keeping, aiding and abetting unlicensed practice in his office, providing false information during the investigation, and theft.

Last November, McCallum of the Barkley Village Family Medical Clinic was charged with injecting more than 50 patients with expired flu vaccine. He now has 20 days to respond.</i>

Christmas 2004 and Telling the boss to fuck off.

Merry Christmas everyone.

This last week has been very interesting. First I go to work on Wednesday sick to check to make sure everyone is ok. I walk in find the girl that is “helping out the office” is on my computer typing a letter introducing herself as the new Office Manager (btw I am the office manager), I pull the doctor into a private room, he stammers a few minutes saying she is only temporarily the office manager. So I tell him to shove his job up his ass. Of course for the next few hours I am a bit worried (I just quit the highest paying job I have ever had) but after a little while I come to the realization that the money wasn’t worth working for a criminal and an asshole.

Wifey goes into work on Friday and he does exactly the same thing, so she tells him to fuck off and walks out. 

We are now both unemployed, but we have talked and we got a good working strategy. First we have all our normal bills paid off until February and lot space paid til March, we have each a full paycheck coming from the office supposedly due from the doc next Friday plus I have a 45 hour paycheck from the Mother Baby Center that I do webdesign stuff for. We should be able to pay off Wife’s bill with Western, all the monthly bills til March and money left over for food. Plus I do get unemployment and will start recieving small amount of income in two weeks (yes doc agreed to give me  unemployment, but probably because he is worried I will turn him in for all the crappy things he does, and I might, but I never said that to him, I wouldn’t actually resort to blackmail to get it).

Then last night went to my parent’s house to have our “Christmas Eve” get together, it went well we had ham, potatoe salad and macaroni salad with pumpkin pie, and something strange ass called Strawberry Pretzel Salad (it was pretzels crushed, covered with some sort of cream sauce and topped with Strawberry Preserves, I was polite and ate a little but it was pretty disgusting stuff) I made blueberrry pie, peanut butter cookies and divinity but didnt have any. The night went well except my dad was all hopped up, but that is just a side note.

Monday we take Orpheus in (he is still sick from his last vet visit) have him looked at. Then I will go up to WWU and put in for admissions back into Western since I have paid them off. I will then talk to thier financial aid to get put back on it (I am hoping this all happens in spring). Then tuesday I go down to WCC and talk to Kathy Barnes about excessive credits and then Wednesday back up to WWU to talk to Professor Sandvig about the Business/Management Information Systems program they have. I am even considering possibly switching back to CS, or going into either Business, Anthropology or Biology. We will see how things work out, I am pretty disgusted with the medical system (I still want to help people, but the absolute greed that occurs by the medical system freaks me out).

Well later today I will probably post more, all I do have to say is even if I make minimum wage, its better then taking the “blood money” I was getting working for the doctor, somehow in the last six months I lost that part of myself that would be happy making less but not working for such a fucked up place, fortunately that has returned.

Merry Christmas to everyone if I don’t post again today (but I think I will).

Getting old and hurting

Well I have been up since 5am. I had a job interview at 7am so I didnt bother to go back to sleep. I went to the interview with my back hurting like a dickens (limping along the 6 blocks to the mini-mart) I got there at 645am and they saw me immediately.

It looks like it might be a decent job. Its minimum wage with no pay increase and its 15-25 hours a week but they have a slack dress policy. You can wear T-shirts, have huge earrings and as long as your clothes are clean and not holey its all good. They also work around school schedules and were totally upfront in that they dont expect anyone to be “permanent” its a dead end job and everyone knows it. They should be getting back to me today or at latest tommorrow (either if I get it or I don’t).

My back has been hurting bad last two days. I think its partially the chair (its a good sturdy chair but isn’t very “supportive” of my back. Our computer desk is  very high off the ground (high enough I cannot comfortably put my feet on the ground and I am 6’4″ tall). and there is nothing to rest my feet on. I may in the fall after Weylin moves out move my computer to a more normal “chair height”, my only problem is that the wife did such an awesome job of installing the counter top our computers are on that I feel bad moving it. Then again we have had that computer top for almost 3 years and I don’t think its bad to maybe want to change after that long. If wifey wants to keep the counter I could move the server there. Once again this isn’t a final decision but one I am thinking of so I can use normal office chairs instead of the “bar” height chairs.

Today I have to get Weylin to confirm if he is paying September rent or not. Either way its no biggie he is my friend and one of the best roommates we ever had so if he stays thats cool, it means we get a bit more money, if he leaves by September 1st thats good cuz it gives us the house to ourselves which is always good for a relationship. Either way is good but I always for some reason feel bad asking about that. I dont want him to feel pressured either way.

Gaming is going well, we are playing this Saturday some Shadowrun and I have to get everyone to commit to a Blood Bowl night. Not sure whats going on with Matt’s game but we will see.

Well thats about it for now, update some a little later.