Friday, July 27, 2007

Much to the disappointment, I suspect, of some of the human factors researchers tracking our mission, our crew has gotten along astonishingly well. I put this down in part to luck, but also in part to some common values, including the stereotypical Canadian ‘niceness’, which a lot of Americans (at least, the ones on our crew) obviously share. Matt is our poster boy for this trait: he’d make you breakfast in bed, then apologize for undermining your diet.

Even with all this harmony, however, sometimes a girl just gets up on the wrong side of the bunk. I had already snarked at both James and Ryan today for no good reason, when an issue came up that actually causes me some real stress: how to make sure that we get all the data we need before we leave (there’ll be no popping back for one more sample once we’re gone). Problem was, I was too irritable to deal with it in an even-tempered, rational way. So, what to do?

One of the human factors studies is looking at coping strategies, which seem to fall into a few broad categories: actively working towards a solution; seeking advice and support; emoting; denial; booze and/or prayer; and so on. Here, many of our habitual strategies just aren’t available: no pets to cuddle or oceans to swim in, for example. In this case, I just wanted to go somewhere else, and do something else for a while – but there’s nowhere else to go, nothing else to do. So, instead, I stopped working, went to my bunk, put in my earplugs, and played stupid computer games for a couple of hours. As coping strategies go, it may not be the healthiest, but when I came out I was able to discuss the EVA schedule without biting anyone’s head off. Mission accomplished.

18 comments:

Lora said...

That can be tough, because, despite always having a tendency to be nice, we can get caught up in general snarkiness anyway!

At work, I usually announce this to unsuspecting co-workers by announcing that "Sheerah" is in the house. That way, they know I'm grumpy and have no intention of offending them if I do.

I bet you get everything done, hell you've lost and recovered your boot, come up with life sustaining and delicious recipes from ingredients most of us would choose not to have, and you're still humming along.

Good on you, Kim!

Jen said...

This will cheer you up!

We're having Timmy and Chrissy for dinner and bought gorgeous Opah from Costco! We also have kalbi, and balsamic and honey roasted onions! And I'm making a potato souffle!

Chrissy is bringing her internationally famous papaya salsa for said fish!

Also, we saw your cat last night. He is fatter than ever, unlike your svelte dog.

Kristin Van Bodegraven said...

Sounds like a great meal. My niece and I are spending the day making our own mozzarella from actual full-fat organic liquid milk. When the cheese is done, we're going to pick tomatoes in my sisters garden and toss them with the cheese in some lovely South Australian olive oil and Murray River salt. After lunch, we're going to the pool, where the adults can get beer.

Kim Binsted said...

Thanks. Thanks a lot. Now I'll just tuck into my condensed-cream-of-mushroom-soup pasta and smile, damn you both.

Ryan said...

You smell funny. Are you really a doctor?

(P.S. I'm starting a crew fight virtually since I'm bored on a Saturday night)

Kristin Van Bodegraven said...

No problem Kim, we're here to help.

Jen said...

Ryan - she got her degree from the University of Barbados. It is a combined associates degree in medical transcription/vet technician. That's how she pulls off the "Doctor" thing.

Tim said...

That would also explain a lot about Leia.

Lora said...

Hey, no luck yet on finding a Weekly World News. Is anyone else looking?

Tim said...

Here's something to be wildly happy about:

Advertiser Staff
Whole Foods Market is planning to open stores in Kailua and Kahului in addition to outlets it already has planned for Kahala and Kaka'ako, the company announced today.
The 40,000-square-foot Kailua location is scheduled to open in 2010 at the site of an existing First Hawaiian Bank branch. The target date for opening the 26,300-square-foot Kahului store is late 2008 or early 2009, the company said.

Kristin Van Bodegraven said...

Once I've completed my degree in Hot Dogs, I will be uniquely qualified to staff the deli. I am very excited.

Sarah said...

Jen, a dream job moves closer to home? Or was it only the Safeway produce that speaks to you in your sleep?

Jen said...

Sarah, it is the Foodland produce. The wily old produce manager, Lester, seduced me three years ago with a donut peach, and I've been theirs ever since.

Tim said...

What the bejesus is a donut peach?

Kristin Van Bodegraven said...

Jeez, Tim! It's a donut, that's also a peach. Everyone knows that. Gosh!

Tim said...

I didn't get the memo, dammit!

Kim Binsted said...

Kailua Foodland?? Superb. Is a donut peach any relation to an ice cream banana? I had one of those at the Kailua farmers market.

Kristin Van Bodegraven said...

The donut peach is a distant cousin to the ice cream banana. It seems that the donut peach's Great Aunt Sue demonstrated a serious breach in in stone fruit protocol several generations back, and proved herself unable to resist the ice cream bananas Great Uncle Henry's somewhat generous...shall we say...ripeness...

Anyway, the entire fruit family is mostly over it, with the exception of the Pluot, who as you can imagine is still reasonably upset.