Today a random guy on Haight asked me for one of the buttons on my backpack. He said he was collecting them and showed me the five pinned to his shirt. I told him I was kind of attached to them and asked if we could trade, but he wasn’t up for it, so I went on my way. About five minutes later I came across a couple of guys on the street corner holding a sign that said “Smile if you masturbate.” I love San Francisco.
My second week of work is almost over. Last week I attended my first press conference and got taken out to lunch by a big legal firm where I ordered a $20 piece of chicken because it was one of the cheapest things on the menu. Other than that I pretty much read through the binder describing my job and tried to figure out what I was supposed to be doing. My computer was broken so that I could use the internet, but every time I tried to open Word or Outlook or print it would shut itself down. So this week they set me up on a laptop, and now I have computer access. I’ve been doing intake interviews with clients with heavy supervision from Nira—I do a couple on my own tomorrow, and I’m nervous. Work is kind of stressful so far because I’m not sure exactly what I’m doing and Nira isn’t sure about everything either because she was hired less than a year ago, so when I have a question I come bug her and then she calls the JV who had my placement last year. Basically I’ve been answering the phone and calling people back and talking to them in Spanish and English and trying to figure out whether we can help them without sounding like an idiot when I really don’t know what I’m doing. And sometimes I get to call people back and tell them there’s nothing we can do for them…which sucks a lot. But I’m helping people, and we’re doing the best we can, and if I keep plowing through this and messing up and figuring out what I did wrong, I’ll get it down eventually.
This past weekend a couple of the JVs from the San Jose house came to visit. They were in SF for the day on Saturday and stopped by in the evening, and we convinced them to stay the night. We all went out to a few bars Saturday night and then came back and had a DP (“dance party”—an NPDP is a “no-pants dance party”) in our living room. Earlier on Saturday Lorraine and I walked through Golden Gate Park, which is ENORMOUS, and we heard Ben Harper as part of the 3-day Outside Lands concert that also included Radiohead and Tom Petty. I say “heard” because we were standing outside the gate and couldn’t actually see anything, but I still think it qualifies as having made it to the concert. Sunday was my birthday and the Chrisses came over for a while. We made our own pizza and Nira sent over an ice cream cake, and I did laundry and watched a music video in the making. All in all it was a pretty good weekend.