Dayshift update: Nightshift soon

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night-owl-vectorA week to go. The six months of dayshift are winding down, with four shifts left before the “team” I’m on switches to nights. My previous posts have explained how I really don’t like day shifts. The fatigue has diminished as I adjusted to working days after more than 23 years on nights, but it has never gone completely away. Trying to acclimate to a work day starting at 7am has been tough. Now, just as it might be finally happening, I’ll be back on nights.

I quit the melatonin as quickly as I could, as it didn’t seem to help, and gave me “intense” (i.e. weird) dreams. My sleep has become a bit more restful, but combined with 12 hour shifts, I haven’t felt this tired, for this long, in… like ever. It’s a fatigue that just never goes completely away. I’m hoping going back to nights will be a quicker and easier transition.

And guess what? We’re losing several dispatchers in the near future. One has already quit, and others are moving on to other jobs. We’ll be short staffed. Again. That means more overtime will have to be filled (something this new schedule was supposed to cut way down on.), and I’m certain we’ll end up with assigned overtime. The solution to these problems seems simple to me, but the county doesn’t seem to think the center needs more bodies. Please stay on the line, your call will be answered by the next available operator.

So, only a few more days on days. Then 12 hour night shifts. It’s weird. So far, most of my dayshifts have had me going to work in the dark, and then coming home in the dark. Now, I’ll be going to nights, and coming to work in the daylight, working in the dark, and going home in the light. That’s not going to mess with my bio-rhythms, is it?

I used to say I loved my job. I still do, but I no longer look forward to going to work. Hurry up retirement. I’m fading fast.


Something I heard on the radio today

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Shaaron Claridge

I was listening to Visalia PD on the radio earlier today, when one of the dispatchers gave a return to an officer in the field, and it struck me as almost eerie.  She sounded very much like the dispatcher heard on the Adam-12 television series!

The interesting thing about the “voice actress” who voiced “Adam-12, Adam-12, see the woman…” and my favorite, “Adam-12, a 211 just occurred, Adam-12, handle code 3!” is she was a REAL police dispatcher, with the Van Nuys division of the Los Angeles Police Department!  She worked part time as a voice actor, and did the dispatch for several police shows through the years.  Can you imagine the double takes people would do, if they listened to early police scanners, or happened to be standing next to a LAPD police car, and heard that voice come across the speakers?  “Hey!  That’s the lady from Adam-12!”  Her husband was a motorcycle officer with LAPD, too.

I look at her dispatch console, a desk, really, and think…  wow!  How things have changed!

My work station

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Last few minutes at work, first day back after a short vacation.  Not a very busy night, thank goodness.  One crazy call late, guy calling a small Texas Police Department and making obscene comments to the dispatcher.  They called us after they tracked down the cell phone’s location and asked us to see if we could find him.  He’s apparently made dozens of calls to them tonight, saying he “wanted pussy”, in both english and spanish.  I left before he was located, so I don’t know if we solved that problem or not.  You just never know what will pop up.

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