Almost there...

Tuesday, March 26, 2002

On the one hand, man this is cool! On the other hand, some people have way too much free time. But man this is cool! Cute kitty too!

Monday, March 25, 2002

Oh, and by the way, I took the Delphi job. Yeah, it'll put me right back here next March, but in the meantime, I'm employed, and I get to learn another ERM system. After this I'll have developed training for all of the big 3: SAP, PeopleSoft, and Oracle. I just hope I can squeeze a vacation in there before June. I've never needed one so badly in all my life.

Some urban legends are true. What amazes me about this was how it swept the web so suddenly twenty-three years after the fact. I just wish that all urban legends sweeping the nation were so fun.

Thursday, March 21, 2002

I love Turbo Tax. I've been using it for the past four or five years now to do my taxes quickly and painlessly online. I enter them online, print them neatly, submit them electronically, get verification back the next day form Franchise Tax Board and the IRS that they think the calculations look good, and all for around twenty bucks. Twenty bucks well spent for the peace of mind and lack of frustration I get doing it this way. Between $113 back from the Feds, and $72 paid to the state, I pretty much broke even this year, but I can't complain. So many people agonize over their taxes, but for me, nothing could be simpler.

Thank god for the dot com revolution. The survivors have revolutionized the world.

Wednesday, March 20, 2002

Oh god. Just got an offer from the Delphi team. They want me for the Labor Distribution training in the Delphi project. Same pay. I'd get to stay here. I'd be in the exact same situation 11 months from now - facing layoffs again.

Do I keep the bird in the hand? Or do I hold out in hopes of the Help Desk Lead? Oh god.

Tuesday, March 19, 2002

Yahoo Instant Messenger is great. I use it every day, especially now that Jo-Ann has moved over to Godzilla and I can't just walk around the corner to discuss cases. One thing I really have determined I need to have in it though is a little emoticon with a raised eyebrow. Too often, that's the expression I really want to send.

Okay, life is a bit ironic today. Jennifer, the woman who stated that the reason she didn't want to hire me was that I wasn't a "team player" left me a voicemail this morning stating that she wanted me to come over to work with her team (Jo-Ann and Sarah) and coach them on answering HelpSU tickets. One half of me was screaming (internally), "Oh, I'm sorry Jennifer, I can't do that because I'm just not a team player." The other half was wanting to prove her wrong. In the middle is my very sick soul, aching. Val says, "Well, the knowledge transfer has to happen." Oh really? Then why did they hire Jo-Ann from our team? She's supposed to know all about doing the help desk. Heck, she was the "Help Desk Lead" for our team. Whatever.

I'm feeling rather bitter about all this today. Rather bitter indeed. But, yes, I did call back and I am going over there tomorrow. Because the reality of it is, I am a team player. And I don't want my users to be stuck with helpless help. Sigh.

Monday, March 18, 2002

Lazy weekend. Didn't end up doing any of the things I'd planned on, except for seeing Ice Age, which was certainly cute. We were planning to go to Sacramento on Sunday for a St. Patty's Day party at Tate's house, but it was raining so we opted for being lazy instead. On Saturday we were supposed to go to a picnic in Golden Gate park, but it was starting earlier than we wanted to be up and out, so we had Cy & Athena over for breakfast, which turned into an afternoon of video games for the boys and browsing the new Pride & Prejudice DVD for Athena and I. All in all, laziness struck hard, and left little behind beyond several slothful couch potatoes.

Back at work today, we're working on making sure the payroll runs smoothly this time. We had Chinese food brought in. My fortune cookie says "Bide your time, for success is near." I've been biding my time, but I have no idea how I would define success. If Delphi offers me a job, is that success? If so, it's a bitter sweet success, being hired into a position I don't feel safe taking because the project is going badly, and it will put me into the same situation I'm in now less than a year later. If the Administrative Systems group offers me a job, is that success? If so, it's a scary place to be - one where it's been stated repeatedly that I will not fit (as a team player), where I will always been the second choice. No, truly, at this point, the Help Desk Lead position, which is a position that drives my career in a direction I wasn't planning on, but which might be positive, is the only direction I can perceive as success. Of course, it's only a fortune cookie, full of random prognostications, signifying nothing. Maybe I should just play the numbers below it in the Lottery. I'd count that as success too. Heck, the best success is not having to work. I'd love to just go back to school and study to my heart's content until I was really ready to do something important. And to travel the world as well. Yeah. Oh well. Probably I'll just continue biding my time, waiting for something to happen.

Friday, March 15, 2002

It's bring your cat to work day at the office! Well, okay, maybe just for Tigger. She's loving it too. She was a bit nervous when I put her in the car this morning (probably with thoughts of yet another trip to the vet), but she's now convinced that she really does just get to come out and visit. And everyone is lavishing tons of attention on her. Plus, her old sofa is here at the office, so she's been napping on it, and soaking up the sunshine from the extra wide window sills. Now she's napping on the floor. I just wish I'd brought the camera. She's so amazingly cute today!

All in all, she seems to be doing a bit better. That is to say, she's not actively going downhill at the moment. She does have to make a trip to the vet next week for her fructosamine test. I'll know more after that about how she's doing.

Thursday, March 14, 2002

I got to actually fulfill my job description today for the first time in 2 months. I got to teach. And I loved it. It was so refreshing. It was also interesting what two months in the trenches has added to my knowledge about exactly how the durned thing works. It works almost exactly as planned, but a few important details have been learned since go live. It was so much fun to be teaching a class again. I really hope my next job lets me do that.

Christyn got a job/internship at Sun Microsystems. I'm so amazingly happy for her. I remember when Charlie posted that job to the Fezziwig's list, and I knew it was right for someone, but I couldn't put my finger on it. It's completely perfect for Christyn. And hopefully it will brighten her spirits. She has still been suffering the after effects of a relationship gone south. Today, she sounded genuinely happy for the first time in a good long while. Hooray!!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2002

Brezsny says:

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): "I don't wake up and get out of bed
for less than $10,000 a day," says supermodel Linda
Evangelista. While it may be unwise for you to set your financial
goals quite so high, I don't think it's unreasonable for you to cop
*some* of Evangelista's feelings of entitlement. After all, cosmic
forces are currently conspiring to enhance your economic well-
being, and will continue to do so for a few months. There's no
reason you can't wake up on July 1 and declare, "I'm not getting
out of bed for less than $350 a day."

Hmmm.... ironic that that's the first day of my unemployment if things keep going the way they are right now. Guess that means I don't have to get up that day. Either that, or I get to start making $91,000 a year. That wouldn't suck.

So, sadly, Dirk and Tracey didn't get the super cool house. The price was too good to be true. There were four competing offers on the first day they accepted offers. They think the winning offer was an overbid of about $50,000. Smart sellers/agent, I gotta say. They generated way more interest by pricing low and got well more than they asked for. Now if the sellers down here would grow a brain like that, it'd be great.

I guess Mark Lutz must have gotten a great new agent. Looking over his listing on IMDB, it's pretty uninteresting. Yet in the last couple of weeks, he's had guest appearances on 3 major shows. First, he's the Groosalugg on Angel, now enjoying a lovely vacation with Cordelia. While on vacation, he seems to have taken the time to also be a guy dating Chen on ER and a love interest for Phoebe on Friends. Oddly enough, he seems to be wearing the same outfit from wardrobe in all three shows. Wacky. Probably because all three shows are produced by Warner Brothers Television Studios. And yes, just for the record, the Warner Brothers lot and water tower does look exactly the same in real life as it does on the Animaniacs. In fact, driving past it for the first time in Burbank was a rather surreal experience - a little animated world come to life. er, something.

Monday, March 11, 2002

I spent the last hour finally getting around to applying for anything and everything on the Stanford jobs website that looked remotely interesting. There wasn't much. There was a Help Desk Lead position that looks interesting, but Jo-Ann is also interested in that, and she's hoping to jump from longterm support of PeopleSoft to this job and then "they'd have to take you on for the AS job!" Only I just can't get remotely excited about that. It's so blazingly clear that Jennifer doesn't want me on her team. I don't want to work for someone who has to take me on grudgingly. It's just a set up for failure.

Meanwhile, Seattle is looking awful tempting. I found a bunch of good job listings at University of Washington and a couple at Microsoft. Could I be more satisfied working for the evil empire than Stanford University? That I'm even really considering it tells me how bad work is making me feel right now.

On Sunday morning we went to see a gorgeous house in Ravenna. Dirk and Tracey have blessed us as their lucky charms. It's perfect. It's just about everything they wanted in a house. It's exactly the right area. It's a cute house in a cute older neighborhood. It's got guest quarters in the basement. It's just such a charming place. They ended up making an offer last night after dropping us at the airport. I really hope they get it.

Saturday, March 09, 2002

Well I'm in Seattle this weekend visiting Dirk and Tracey and Camryn. Camryn is walkign and talking and has teeth. She's still the cutest little elf that ever graced the planet. She's amazingly well tempered. And boy is she her father's daughter. His eyes (which are just stunning on her!), his chin, his smile. Too cute. We're on our way out to adventure around downtown for a while. Weeeeee!

Meanwhile, I had a demonstration this week of the new applicant tracking system. After figuring out how it was supposed to work, realizing that it didn't work, and figuring out a way to fake it using screen shots, the demonstration went really well. Everyone I interacted with congratulated me on how well it went. The best part was at the end. The users were accepting the change, and the reason became abundantly clear when I asked them to please let us know about any problems their having by sending HelpSU requests. Several of the users who were most hostile about the change originally piped up and said that we had been really great about getting back to them quickly with the right answers. They thanked me for being there so many hours. It was just like a teaching high. I've fallen in love with my users the same way I did with my students. And I'm really going to miss them when I go.

Wednesday, March 06, 2002

Do you ever get zits on the inside of your nose? Well I do, and it seems to be the invariable result of getting sick for me. Just when I start feeling better, the intrepid inner nose zit sneaks up and makes me want to chop my nose off again. Okay okay, TMI, but really, I can't even itch my nose right now. It's bizarre.

Meanwhile, Kevin came over for dinner and Buffy last night. It was fun. I baked chocolate chip cookies. Tigger took the opportunity to spend the night curled up next to him. He being somone who is not evil and does not keep trying to force feed her pills, she was in little kitty heaven.

Today Fred has an interview here at Stanford. I'm kind of hoping he gets the job, and I find a job, and then it'll be really great to have Fred around more often. Plus, it'll be way easy to talk him into Watercourse after work. Hee hee!

Monday, March 04, 2002

Mostly recovered, I'm back at work facing new and exciting issues. I've got an interview with Jackie for the Delphi project this afternoon at 3:30. I'm not sure whether I want that to go well or not. On the one hand, I'd love to learn Oracle. On the other hand, I don't think I'll have an opportunity to learn so many facets of the system as I have had with PeopleSoft HRMS. Then again, it's a job. Then again, it's another project based job and I'll be in the same position again (facing layoffs) this time next year. And there's the problem that this project is not going well. It's missed a bunch of deadlines already. It's a bit scary to say the least. We shall see. If I could just plan to stay where I am and continue to help my current users become proficient, that would be great, but since that isn't an option, I guess the Delphi project is a job, and I need one of those, so I'll take it if I get it.

The weekend was fairly leisurely. We went for a short hike on Sunday at Castle Rock with Athena, Cyrus, Christyn, Jim, and Pete. It was nice to get out to the woods for a while. I'm a forest person. When I want to go out and see nature, I want to go to the hills. The beach holds nothing special for me. Sand and surf is not enough to inspire me, but give me a few hundred soaring trees against the backdrop of a blue sky and I'm in heaven. I'm way overdue for a trip to my grandparents cabin at Quintette.