Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I take it back

My bitch and moan from yesterday? I get to take back much of it.

Even as I posted, I realized I was being harsh. The person who called me wasn't saying, "This pisses me off and I want......". Instead, he was saying, "I think I need to talk to this other person, but I need help doing it in a way that doesn't cause offense or division." This is a very adult attitude, and I was wrong to complain about it.

I got a followup e-mail from this person. It showed them to be even more of a responsible adult that the picture I portray above. I need to spend an evening with with this crusty grouch, getting drunk and engaging in mutual bitching and moaning and whining. It will do me good.


I am minding my business last night (still savoring certain recent memories) when I get a phone call from a member of Horus Oasis.

"I'm upset with the actions of this other Horus Oasis member..."

Blah, blah, blah.

OK - The concerns are valid. The caller didn't want me to fix things, but was wanting insight before approaching the other person. They wanted to resolve the issue without any toe-stomping. This is all good. But.....

...for crying out loud, people. I am a Body Master of an occult organization that is supposed to be enabling us to get in touch with our higher - and hence BETTER - selves! I am not a babysitter, in charge of a bunch of middle aged preschoolers.

Monday, April 27, 2009

A lesson on focus

I made it back to the gym today. Yea me! This is the second time since I got home from Texas and came down with that cold last month.

I can tell I am out of shape. My first trip to the gym, after 20 minutes I had to switch from running to walking. On this trip, I was ready to make the switch at 30 minutes. (My workout runs 40 minutes.)

But then something happened.

A pair of young ladies entered the section of the gym in front of my workout station. As one of them lay down on the abs machine, her shorts fell to the side and I saw the promised land shielded in white cotton. Yea, verily, it was more panty that I have seen in months. It was just the portion of the panty I would view if given the choice. Yum. It was beautiful.

For the next ten minutes of my workout, as the two girls continued to tempt me with occasional glimpses of white, my attention was no longer on my toiling legs or burning lungs. There was no call to walk instead of run. No. My attention was elsewhere.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cleaning house

The frenzy continues.

The Gnostic Mass equipment was all packed into the car and will find a new home tomorrow. Michael's possessions have been sorted and boxed and shoved into a corner. The newsletter for Horus Oasis has been reviewed.

With all of that, I still feel as if the day was only a partial success. No workout. Cat boxes not emptied. Dishes still dirty.

My hope is that the Mass Equipment is out of my airspace forever. With each load that walked out to the car, I felt less weight on me and more freedom in the house. My fear is that it will all manage to come back. We will see.

Michael will be home for Christmas, so he can sort through the boxes then. I think most of his stuff is here to stay. Too good to throw away, not good enough to drag into enlisted housing.

The renters are moving out of Kat's basement this week. We are supposed to make repairs this weekend. It isn't going to happen. Too many other things to do in Salt Lake and Tooele. So it look like my evenings next week are all going to be spent with cleaning and repairs at the rental. This may also scuttle my plans to resume my workout schedule.

There is too much life in my life and not enough living.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New sleeping arrangements

The old bed just wasn't doing it for me anymore. It was a homemade frame - for one of the kids, and meant to be first installment on a bunk bed - and held the mattress between 4 and 5 feet off the ground. I guess it was nice being able to put shelves and a small desk underneath. But 'something' changed and I spent the last three weeks avoiding it and crashing on the king size bed in the guest room.

So yesterday I took it all apart. This evening I performed surgery, put it back together, and I now have a bed that sits only about six inches higher than standard. It is something I can fall into instead of having to climb into.

I was never really utilizing the space under the old bed anyway.

I think cleaning out the temple space a few weeks back unplugged something in my psyche. The bed is just the latest in a small flurry of activity. I just wish I had more time to put into me, and less committed to not-me.

Getting traction, losing sanity

I am understanding now why they moved me to QA at work. I was finally able to latch onto something that allows me to build and run detailed reports, suck the results into a spreadsheet, then hunch over and examine the numbers while mumbling profane words and phrases. I have found my calling.

My first task in QA is to help develop reports our customers use to analyze sales and to compare against national averages. So far I have found the causes for damn near every discrepancy between the new reports we are building and the older reports we are basing them on. Better yet, some of the problems I found are problems with the OLD reports that no one else ever caught. It feels good to finally feel useful.

In other news, Horus Oasis also is gaining traction, but that isn't all good. The demands on my time are increasing, and I have no time to spare in the first place. Also, some of the increased demands are wonderful for the other people involved, but are doing nothing for me. I put energy in, I get nothing back out. (Instead of the O.T.O., I could be talking about a woman.) I think I am doing more from a sense of obligation and plain inertia than from desire. This is not good. I must spend time thinking about this.

On the other hand, with new people coming on board, they could be in a position to take some of the load in a reasonable time - assuming they don't get scared or bored before we carry their limp bodies out of their First Degree initiations and carefully nurse them back to health.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Bachelor Chow

How to make Bachelor Chow.

Open a package of pinto beans that has been sitting in the south cabinet for....years. Dump into a large stew pot (12 oz??? 16 oz???).
Add much water, turn heat on low, walk away from it.
Have a friend in the O.T.O. call you about a plumbing emergency.
Turn off heat on your way out the door.
Drive north 50 miles, fix the damned toilet, drive back home.
Drain water, refill, turn on heat.
Get drunk.
Turn off heat and leave to soak overnight.
Sleep for 10 hours.
Drain water.
Add whatever was left in that bag of brown sugar that has been sitting in the south cabinet for.....years. About a cup.
Add two 12 oz cans of tomato sauce that have been sitting in the basement for...years.
Add contents of three Papa John's Pizza red pepper packets.
Prepare rice (2 cups rice that ahve been sitting in the basement for.....decades, 4 cups water) with rice cooker - the bachelor's best friend.
Dump rice into stew pot with beans.
Stir well.
Spoon into those damned 2 cup Glad containers that the ex-wife gets for free because they have lunch meat in them.
Freeze or refrigerate.
Take to work.
Microwave and eat in front of co-workers, causing them to pity (married) or envy (not married and can't cook) you.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Course Correction

Last night was an odd night. I had a visitor, and I could tell from the first moment how the evening would end. It wasn't the ending that was in line with my will. But I allowed it to happen anyway.

Events unfolded in orderly and predictable steps, and at any step I could have stopped and said, "This is not my will." But I did not.

It is a lesson learned. This morning I cleared my temple space. I created a large pile of laundry, and did much cleaning. I did what I could to clear and clean my living space. I am now putting my space back together.

A black candle burns in the Temple of Wombat. It was lit after banishing, and before re-dedicating the temple.

The 'what happened' part of the night is not the point. It could have been nothing larger than allowing the visitor to put Depeche Mode on the stereo when it was really my will to listen to Rush. The point is that the wants of the other trumped my own will.

Measures must - and will - be taken.

Friday, April 03, 2009

200 Grand and counting

It was episode 11, season 17 of The Simpsons. Principal Skinner gazes out the window of his office, to his car. It is, we learn, a 1995 Toyota Camry. 1995 was, according to Seymour Skinner, a good year for the Camry.

When I saw this the first time a laughed. I was proud owner of a 1995 Toyota Camry. I am still owner of this car, and today it turned over 200,000 miles (I-15 Southbound at the north Lehi exit).

I have put a fair bit of money into preventative maintenance for this car. But when I try to think of what has broken then been repaired, I come up blank. Do light bulbs count? The brakes needed work, but that was wear, not failure. Same with the struts. Try as I might, I can't think of a single repair of the "it broke" variety that has set me back more than 20 bucks.

The best $400 I put into this car was for a trailer hitch and a 4 by 8 utility trailer from Harbor Freight. Picture this. 800 pounds of "stuff" in the trailer. 12 hours of driving, across the Salt Flats and Nevada, over Donner's pass, then to Oakland, CA. Even with the trailer, I did better than 30 miles to the gallon. The car took it all in stride - just another day's work, just another commute.

As I once said to a friend, if you can't do it with four cylinders, it isn't worth doing. And the Malkuth-mobile has 2.2 liters of smooth, determined power running through a 5 speed manual gear box. Put it on Cruise Control and drive to the edge of the earth.

Killing the Joy

So here I was, moving into the new job. I got the news on Thursday, made plans on Friday, and moved to the new desk (in another building, across the street) on Monday.

Tuesday was starting to learn the ropes: getting to know the tools, the procedures and the personalities. So far so good. I even ripped a few tasks off the waiting list and did something useful with them.

Wednesday was setting up the new PC. This is nearly as fun as a physical move. Then I started into yet more testing, running parts of the new GUI through the paces. I was actually feeling productive.

Then came Thursday, and some news. One of the guys on the other QA team gave his two weeks notice. This left that team much shorter on resources than my team. How to plug the hole? Hire someone? No way. Move someone over from support? Not even. Wait! Let's move Andy!

Being jerked out of the new job just as I am feeling productive is demoralizing. Having to wait a few weeks for the guy I am replacing to actually go away is even worse.