The points are thus:
My work week started last Friday. It started with three 12 hour shifts, and is ending with four 8 hour shifts. My next week is going to start with a 12 hour shift on Sunday and follow with four 8 hour shifts. If I cover on Friday night, I'll end up only having Saturday off. One day between two 12 hour shifts, and essentially working for almost a straight half-month. Considering I used to work three 12 hour shifts and then have four days off until this week, it's been quite a change. However, it hasn't really been all that bad, what with the shorter work days meaning time to sleep and do stuff before or after work.
Often, when I am on vacation, this co-worker is the one that covers for me. He normally works first shift on week days, and I work weekend nights. But he still is willing to cover those days. This week, when I was supposed to work Sunday from 7-7 and then be back 9 hours later for a 4pm starting shift, he showed up early (5am) so I could leave and have a semi-reasonable amount of sleep. (I have a 1 hour commute so that 9 hours is actually 7 hours or less at home, and with showering, eating, actually getting to sleep, and so on, it would have ended up probably being about 4-5 hours or so.) While he has his personality quirks, he's usually not too obnoxious. He's generally an easy-going, laid back sort of individual.
My thought is basically this:
I will cover for him, if management approves the overtime. What he was proposing was that I work Friday and then he'd cover a Sunday two weeks down the line, and our time sheets would look no different. I've been fairly easy going and undemanding for a long time now, but I just feel like I should be able to mark some pretty hefty overtime down as such.
During the writing of this I called my supervisor and spoke with him. He muddled it over for a bit and then told me that on short notice the overtime couldn't be approved and to let my co-worker know. So I've left him a message. He then called back, and he'll be speaking with my supervisor and possibly our manager as well.
On a good note, it appears that we've already hired two people to fill the empty positions, one of which being an old co-worker by the name of Rudy. I always liked Rudy. He's a short, sorta fat Portugese kid with the attitude of a prankster, but he's one of those jokers that's a big teddy bear. Apparently he'll be taking third shift, which means I'll be handing off my second shift turnovers to him. That'll be pretty cool. I don't know much about the other person that was hired, but I guess it's not anyone I know, which means he'll need more training than Rudy. With that news I actually feel quite a bit better about this whole schedule mess that we're in, since there is already a forseeable horizon to it.
Anyways, there's still the possibility that I could work Friday, depending on whether the Sox fan can wrangle my supervisor or manager in to agreeing that I get paid the overtime. While I've always had a "who cares" attitude towards overtime pay, this would be probably around 20 hours worth, which is a pretty decent little chunk of cash. But if I get Friday off, that works too.