Saturday, February 28, 2004

posted by David - 6:25 PM

Now it's time for a Waste of Space.

Just an anecdote I would like to share in regards to the testing comment posted previously this week.

About six months ago, I was working in Florida. I was undertaking a strategic relocation based on local proximity (a.k.a. hiding to take a break) when one of my co-workers finally managed to get a hold of me.

He tells me they've been looking for me for a while, and they need me down at the field office. I'm not sure what's going on at this point, so I head off the ship. I'm cruising down to the office, and I come across a large crowd of co-workers standing around doing nothing... well, a bit larger than the NORMAL crowd that stands around doing nothing.

I walk up to my Supervisor and ask him what's going on? He just slides on the vacant "I don't know, I'm just the boss" look and gestures at an armed MP standing at the entrance to the office.

Standing there is a 6'-tall, ebony bondage goddess... or she would be if it wasn't for the whole MP-standard, "I want to shoot now and not ask questions" look. In a semi-bored way, she tells me that a drug dog hit on my backpack.

"So you want to search it right? O.K. Let's go," I tossed out. My forward attitude threw the MP back a bit, and we did the whole paperwork thing and got down to the search.

While checking out my backpack, they come across a film canister. With eyes positively aglow, they slide the contents out into their gloved palms... Quarter and Dollar Coins slid into their waiting hands.

(A 35mm-film canister is the PERFECT size for storing said coins in case of an emergency. You never know when you may need to call home... or bribe a co-worker with a candy bar. ;) )

Crestfallen, the search falls short. No drugs in my backpack. (Maybe the dog just likes goldfish snack crackers... They were my lunch for the day.) So I'm off to the ship again to once again wander around without purpose until the end of the day.

Once again, I'm cruising back to the office, and confronted with yet another stupidity. The ship's captain wants me to take a drug test. I end up talking to my supervisor and the project superintendent about the issue. (In the captain's defense, there was a LARGE drug problem on his ship.)

Now, there is no basis to require this test of me, and I'm about steamed. I submitted to a search of my personal belongings (not required FYI). And despite coming-up zero, they have the unmitigated gall to ask for a PISS TEST!?

I was a tad upset.

I asked where the test was going to be done. They told me that it would be done on the ship. (Yeah, like I'm going to let them set ME up for a fall that easy.) I said that I wasn't even going to THINK about it unless the test was done at a neutral facility. I then informed them that I would NOT submit to the test unless the captain, and his entire command staff, would take it with me.

I even volunteered to hold the captain's cup. >.<

Well, the point of this is as follows. Asking for a drug test is an insult to a point, especially when there is no obvious basis for said test. It is an invasion of privacy. If someone messes up the test, your career can be flushed, even if you've done nothing wrong. For a figure in the spotlight like a pro-athlete, it can ruin your image. I know... It would be rough surviving off the measly $848,203 bazillion they already have. Not as rough as a person with a less glamorous job that really needs the income, but still hard.

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