Archive for June, 2006

Made my day

My coworkers just surprised me with a cake for my birthday (a week early, but it was also for another coworker who has a birthday too). It was enough to completely make my month, because my birthday usually only gets noticed by family, so it’s really really nice to have friends recognize it as well.

Premature Celebration: Part II

You remember my last post? You know, that post where I said I got a promotion? Well, it’s still happening, except the part where I get the promotion.

I was supposed to start my new job on Monday—last Monday, that is. But when I got into work to gather my stuff to bring onto the campus with me, I was informed that there was “some problem” with the purchase order for the new job, and thus I wasn’t going to be starting just yet.

This was the point at which I should have known that it wasn’t going to happen at all. But I digress.

So it was decreed that I would stick around where I was for the next few days, until they straightened out what absolutely must have been some kind of clerical error. No big deal, I’ll just start a few days later and the job will extend a few days later.

(Is this starting to sound a little familiar, anybody?)

I heard nothing further on the matter until Friday, when my boss came over to my team lead (I happened to be sitting there talking with him at the time) and asked him if he would be willing to train me as the backup team lead, for when he wasn’t there. (Said team lead had been away at a conference for two days and my boss was covering for him, which he hates to do, which is why he asked that I be trained to do it.) Never mind the fact that I’ve expressed absolutely no desire to be any kind of lead role or management position, or that as of this point in time, we were still expecting that I wasn’t going to be available for the next eighteen weeks or so.

But when this latter point was brought up to my boss, we were informed that “oh yeah… that’s probably not going to happen.” As in, at all. If it does, he said, it probably won’t be for weeks.

So to recap: This is twice, now, that my company has told me I’ll be starting a new and exciting position, only to tell me later on that it just wasn’t meant to be.

Well, I’ll be damned… Something good happened.

I haven’t updated lately, even though I’ve had stuff to report, mainly because I haven’t had the time and/or the energy to write up a post. Even now, I would really rather be headed to bed, but I want to get this all put down on paper (as it were) just so I can focus on other things.

First, I’ve lost some weight. I’m down just under ten pounds at this point, to just over 260. I was down under what I weighed before I quit smoking (more on that below) for the first time since quitting. Unfortunately, over the last weekend I gained some weight due to extremely unhealthy behavior (more on that below, as well).

It feels really nice to be losing weight—mainly, I think, because it’s the result of increased discipline. I’ve been working very hard lately on my finances and my eating habits (and I think that the discipline for both comes from much the same place), and it’s been rather amazing at how much better I feel, not only in the psychological sense that I’m doing something good for myself, but in a very tangible sense as well. Working on keeping my finances in order means that I’m far less likely to eat out, which means that I have to cook for myself and plan my meals—more discipline, which has a direct impact on my health as well as my wallet.

As for the smoking: I just hit the five-month mark of not having had a cigarette. Not much to say at this point that I haven’t said in one of my prior updates regarding the smoking. I do, however, feel that it’s important to keep celebrating the fact that I’ve been successful with this. But I think that after the six-month mark (which, coincidentally, will be at some point very near my birthday next month), I won’t bother posting any celebrations until I hit the one-year mark.

And as for last weekend: We shut down an entire datacenter last weekend. The power consumption of our New London datacenter was growing so much that we didn’t have any more capacity, and as a result they had to add UPSes (Uninterruptable Power Supplies). However, in order to do that, we had to shut the entire datacenter down. Given that there were over a thousand servers alone (not counting network devices, network storage devices, SAN devices), this was no small feat. Given that there was only a 36-hour window during which they could work while the power was out, too, meant that we had to work fast in order to get it done. We shut down all of the servers in a matter of about 10 hours on Friday night, and powered them all back on from Sunday afternoon through early Monday morning. We had a small contingent of servers that had to be powered back on by 6pm Sunday for the start of the business day in Nagoya, Japan, and another set of servers that had to be powered back on by 3am on Monday for the start of the business day in Sandwich, England. Needless to say, I was pretty exhausted come Monday (although I got lucky as I have awesome coworkers who knew that I had a long drive and were fine with letting me go home a couple hours early, both nights). I was also eating crap the whole weekend as a result.

And now for the really good news: I got a promotion! Well, sort of. It’s an 18-week “project” with my company to fill in on the Level 3 support position, to backfill for our normal guy who is doing another position. It means that I get to do more in-depth, engineering-level stuff, which is exactly the kind of thing that I want to do. You know, solving the big problems type stuff. No pay raise, but obviously it gives me more ammunition for the not-too-distant future (especially should they decide to keep me on in the position or move me into other similar positions instead of putting me back where I am currently).

I think there was some other stuff, too, but I really can’t remember what it was, so I’ll finish for now.

This is how geeks do lazy.

As a geek, I know how to do lazy in a way that very few others know how. Let me explain:

I just spent over an hour writing a script for my laptop so that it will automatically figure out whether I’m logging in at home or at work, and start certain programs based on which one it is. Because I just can’t be bothered to double-click some icons like normal people.

This is the kind of laziness that can only be beaten by the people who will search the living room top to bottom because they can’t find the television remote.

I don’t think necessity is the mother of invention – invention, in my opinion, arises directly from idleness, possibly also from laziness. To save oneself trouble. — Agatha Christie
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