Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Panda Bear on the Status of her Blog American Overwork and the Ill Health of Her Father

The Panda Bear wants to let her readers know that she has not abandoned her blog.   Her father has been critically ill for the past two weeks.   She plans to restart her blog once the health status of her father is resolved.

Her father who is 89 fell down the stairs and broke his pelvis and has sustained a brain injury.   While he is not brain dead, he has sustained a brain damage.   Yesterday, he appeared to be totally unconscious.

He is in the intensive care unit at The Massachusetts General Hospital.   The Panda Bear spent a couple of days with her father in the unit of the hospital.   She was impressed with the list of specialists that were working on her father to deal with his health.

Probably as a result of his fall, the Panda Bear's father has sustained a heart attack and brain seizure.   The brain seizure has set the Panda Bear's father back in terms of mental cognition.

The Panda Bear Blog is in part of blog about American overwork.  The Panda Bear gets very angry at supposed "experts" who aren't on the clock telling us average folk that we simply imagine that we are overworked.

It is the most stressful time of year in the Panda Bear's line of work.   The Panda Bear wants it noted that many American workers are going from work to personal stress.  While the Panda Bear's employer has been good about giving the Panda Bear time of from work, it should be noted that this is coming from the eighteen days from the Panda Bear's "Benefit Time" which is a combination of personal, sick and vacation time.

Nowadays, jobs are hard to get.   In life and death discussions with the physicians the Panda Bear will be waving company leave of absence forms so her job can be protected under the American Family Medical Leave Act.

The Panda Bear now must get ready for her tasks for the day and see her very ill father on the first holiday of the summer.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Panda Bear on Bullying, May Day, and Time Famine

The Panda Bear Blog is a blog about average people struggling with average problems.

The Panda Bear reconnected with another friend from her childhood who also was bullied.   The years she would have been bullied would be from about 1968-1972.   The Panda Bear and all her friends remember that the schools did nothing to stop bullying.    The Panda Bear is glad that school bullying is now talked about.   She does not remember it being talked about she was a child.   The Panda Bear has had these conflicting memories of feeling like she was the only child ever in the history of the world who was bullied and at the same time if she saw other children being bullied she would have the feeling that she was glad it was not her.   Even if bullying has not stopped in schools, the Panda Bear thinks it is an infinite improvement from when she was a child that it is now being discussed in classrooms.   That the schools did nothing to stop the bullying made the Panda Bear feel that the bullies were somehow right.    The Panda Bear also feels that it is too bad that all the bully victims could not get together and simply ignore the bullies.   The bullies seemed to have better group organizational skills than the bullied.

According to this article in the The Nation, more people in the US are celebrating May Day.   The article gives a interesting history of May Day.   The Panda Bear things more needs to be done to celebrate and honor achievements of average people.    The Panda Bear is hearing of "employee appreciation" events where the higher ups pretty much say they think they are more important than their workers.   In the Panda Bear's opinion, employee appreciation should be where  managers appreciate the ordinary workers.   If upper management feels they are superior to the workers they should be tactful enough not to say in front of them on worker appreciation events.   To the Panda Bear this behavior is both rude and stupid.

In a previous post, the Panda Bear said the purpose of her blog was to chronicle the rising hours of work and how it was not good for society.   The Panda Bear feels it would be nice for people who feel time stressed to be able to band together to find solutions both on a societal and personal level.  Furthermore,  the Panda Bear believes that many of the "experts" in US society have an incomplete understanding of the average worker.  

In her last week's post, the Panda Bear discussed a study by authors associated with Harvard, Yale and Wharton Business school about how volunteering made time stressed people feel like they had more free time. To get the full text of the study click here.   The authors describe the problem of time stressed Americans quite accurately here:

Despite medical advances that have lengthened the human lifespan and technologicalinnovations that have automated many chores, Americans report feeling more  time-constrainedthan ever (Carroll, 2008; Robinson & Godbey, 1999). Many, in fact, perceive themselves asvictims of a “time famine'
having too much to do and not enough time to do it (DeVoe &Pfeffer, 2011; Perlow, 1999). With waking hours largely consumed by work, precious minutesremain for the daily list of to-dos, including exercise, cleaning, and socializing with friends and family (Kahneman, Krueger, Schkade, Schwarz, & Stone, 2004). Not surprisingly, some 85% of parents wish for more time with their children (Bianchi, Robinson, & Milkie, 2006), and twice asmany Americans would prefer two weeks of vacation over two weeks of extra pay (HonorĂ©,2004).Most relevant to the present investigation, people’s sense that time is scarce decreases their tendency to give time to others. Darley and Batson (1973) showed that seminary students late to discuss the parable of the Good Samaritan hurried past a suffering confederate. Similarly,Levine (1998) found pace-of-life to negatively predict prosocial behavior in cities around theworld, with the chronically time-constrained inhabitants of places like New York being leastlikely to spend time helping strangers.
However, the Panda Bear feels it is simplistic to say that people would feel less time strained if they "volunteered".

In future posts, the Panda Bear will analyze her free time to see how much she wastes.