Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Come on all you great fans and shake your caboose!

Pot LightsHello, each and every. It's been an odd week; we received proof once again that the two things Western Washingtonians cannot figure out how to do are drive on snow and irrigate their lawns. That's my way of saying it snowed a bunch and people who would not be seeing a problem the next day freaked out anyway. (Make no mistake, a lot of people were impacted and last I heard 10,000 people were without power to the distant north. Video of the road I used to travel to work on was absurd.) The news says that we'll be getting hit again tomorrow. Hopefully this won't be a very bad thing since I have a Josh Blue comedy show to attend in Seattle on Friday. (The bill also features Chris Porter, who is funny when he's himself but when he goes into that Ralphie May variety street character he's not very funny. Take a note, Chris.) Paige & Brian's ornament collection has been selected, for the fifth year out of the last six, to decorate the display case at the Parkland/Spanaway branch of the Pierce County Library, so if you happen to be in the 138th & Pacific area during the month of December come see this year's wonderment; the theme this time is snow and snowflakes, and it's gonna be wonderful. I will be assembling the goods to put it together today, as well as organize stuff for the tree in our livingroom. The tree will also have a theme for once (with a little overlap of the display case): green and white and clear lights and ornaments. I got the purple and blue house lights up on the eaves a couple days ago (and my fingers are still frozen) and I'll be posting a photo of them next entry, I need to take pictures at dusk today.

Employment pursuits: I've been interviewed twice by a point-of-sale computer dealer as an installer and trainer, and this morning I got a call from LiveBridge about some support gig in Olympia. Illiterate and other geek friends be amused to know that I failed LiveBridge's prescreening because I wouldn't acccept $9/hr for the same work I've been doing since 1999 for at least $12. When they say "entry level" phone monkey job they mean "bend over so I can get a level entry". [And no, LB was never mentioned by name in the job listing, only the company this position is for.] And now, for something completely different...

I wasn't denied benefits a couple weeks ago for not making it to the Unemployment Department's weenie roast; I presume that either they got my call or they took note that I claimed wages for the day they had me scheduled. So last week I got a note inviting me to a "how to get employed" meeting for yesterday. To my surprise, a quarter-inch of snow didn't cause them to cancel the event. So I went there after my interview with the POS company, arriving at 12:10pm for my 1:00pm meeting. Spaced off in the lobby, riffing with this old guy about everything going on around us. Hearth lights There's a big-screen TV over the front desk which displays job announcement. Yes, in the singular. I thought the computer needed to be rebooted because the listing for a machine operator didn't ever change... and apparently hadn't changed since it was listed in April 2006. Fifteen minutes later it did change, to a PowerPoint presentation about the department, services, and so forth, and it displayed information about a couple other jobs for 20 seconds each, including a cattle-call for some job that was going to have a screening meeting here in this office... in June of 2006. Doesn't anyone on the other side of the counter ever read this thing? There's a sign on the wall saying "no cell phones", yet every employee we see has a Nextel walkie-phone that's squawking. There's an office with 4/5 of a wall off to the side, and we can hear everything that the guy inside is saying -- or rather, he's laughing his foo' ass off every few seconds, he thinks he's alone and in private; I was waiting for him to say something embarassing and descriptive. I had parked on the next block, across from two buildings which are on the Tacoma's Noxious Nine list, because all the parking anywhere near the office is either 30 minutes or 2 hours but the meeting is scheduled to last 3 hours, so the assembled got to talking about that bit of discrepancy. Then 1:00pm rolled around, we went off to a meeting room within the bowels of the building named "Puyallup River" (funny, it didn't seem grey...), and plopped ourselves down. Kirk took our information so we could get credit for attending, he told us about some websites and programs, he waved flyers about things we might want to attend around and offered us some (but not all) of them, and then... he dismissed us. The time was 1:40pm or so, so I'd spent more time in the lobby than in the scheduled-for-three-hours meeting. Okilyfine, I'm gonna go toward home and buy Christmas gifts along the way. And speaking of: the local True Value doesn't have anything of a holiday theme so I'm gonna go to Federal Way for the annual album, I guess... last time I was there they were very much festive and heavily invested in LED light strings.

Quick special note: I got email from a friend and fellow Lazy F camper that I haven't seen in over 20 years, courtesy of him Googling himself and coming across his name in a blog entry. w00t!

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