Sunday, March 23, 2008

in a world of silence, in a world of sound

Paige rips out the soffetI still don't have much interesting to say, as far as I know, but should post so my three readers don't think I've fallen off the earth again. Today is Sunday and Chrome is asleep in my familyroom, having gone to bed early then gotten up at 2am to engage me in political discourse until about 5am. I should still be asleep but I'm not. The image at right marks about half of what's happened improvementwise to the kitchen -- Paige got a wild hare up her bummie and decided demolish the soffet. What's not entirely clear in the photo is that there's bare drywall at the sides, only the middle where one might see looking up the light hole has been painted. And it's original paint (or lack thereof) so the soffet is original to the house, where I had suspected it was an afterthought. There will be a bunch of work to make this span match the ceiling and wall, and the light needs to be replaced and rewired, but it should be worth it. The other half was taking all the magnets and random scraps off the fridge, putting them into the box of fridge juju that has been under a table next to the cat's bowl for as long as we've lived here, and finally sorting through to put the photos and neicephew art into one place, the magnets we use or want to keep into safekeeping, lose some outdated garbage, and give the rest to charity. It was such a small project but one that's been put off for nearly a decade...

I got yer stupidity right here: It was revealed that all three major political candidates had their passport records viewed by unauthorized parties within the passport system. Condoleeza Rice held a press conference where she said "none of us wants to have a circumstance in which any American's passport file is looked at in an unauthorized way." Okay, here are the bits of meat I have picked off these bones of contention:
a) Ironic she'd say it was wrong to snoop in people's records when she's been a major part of this administration's domestic spying effort. Do as I say, not as I do; it's only bad if it's someone other than us doing it.
b) The three candidates not only have nothing to hide, but being such public people there's nothing to 'discover'. If your agenda is publicly posted and the media is at the airports of departure and arrival, the nightly news will tell you more than looking up where one's passport has been used. It's that shifty-looking guy you've never heard of over there who they need to have a better look at.
c) Strange that the three candidates would be told that they'd been snooped on, since no one else in the United States ever hears that their privacy has been intruded upon, or at the government level anyhow since your credit card company or Internet provider may eventually let you know that someone may have swiped your data.

So here's what's happening with my temp job (some could file this under stupidity -- I'd call it that if I found this out at the last moment)... At this moment 70% of the calls to my department are being routed to the Canadian outsource center, and for periods of a couple hours the rest of the calls get shipped up there too. We still get all the mail because there's no way to just share a part of it. Now, come the end of March, 100% of calls and all email will be going to the Canadian center, and we're going to be kept around for two weeks to take care of the existing queue of mail (the other center's using a different database system so can't see what we already ahve) and be an emergency backup in case there's trouble with the transition. The existing mail will take about one week to properly shuffle, so between April 7 and 15 we're all going to be spending our eight or ten hour shifts goofing off. (Not that we don't do that already but there won't be duties to fulfill as distraction.) I'll work on my résumé soon, ya rly! srsly! The way the system is supposed to work is PleaseGoAway tells OutsourceAgency what's up, and OutsourceAgency is supposed to tell OurAgency the deal, so OurAgency can make good on their pledge to find us new jobs. Just in case one party decided to just drop this info into another party's lap in three weeks, I told OurAgency what the schedule is so they have 3 weeks to find us new gigs, and coworkers thought OurAgent's response of "thanks for letting us know, we can't make any guarantees but..." reply was a wee bit canned but there are not going to be any surprises.

Happy Easter, and here's hoping some computer stores are open today so Chrome and I can go shopping!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

the times grew silent... corpora lente augescent cito extinguuntur

Hello, party people. It wasn't intentional that I failed to blog last week, I apparently didn't have anything to say and didn't attempt to fake it. :-D I can't say I'm much better this week either but you should at least have some notice. mmm tasty Life stuff: Yes, I'm still working, though I notice my account's expiration date advanced by a month from a week from now until the end of April so apparently we're not quite done here yet. The guy pictured in the January 2, 2008 entry left the company (practically on a stretcher) yesterday morning because he's moving to Austin, TX so I'm a little sad. It's wild to be a sensei to a grasshopper who reminds me a lot of myself at that age. Home project-wise, I'm finishing up the ceiling, an issue of my own cause. See, I might have mentioned a week after the texturing, and discovering the texture paint ("so you don't have to repaint!" -- bzzzt, wrong!) was a little more dingy yellow than bright white, I painted 4/5 of the kitchen/diningroom ceiling and ran out of paint. I bought another can, which didn't quite match (slightly grey, which I kinda like), and finished the job then touched up the weak parts of the rest of the ceiling. But, uh, then there were these grey sections on the white ceiling. So I went very thinly over the rest of the ceiling to make it match, and now it looks fine... but was in a hurry and didn't have good lighting when I got to the end (my wife and sis-in-law wanted to go out to dinner, and I was starvin') so it wasn't until the next morning that I saw where it was thin, so now I need to touch those up. At least it will match, presuming I stir the paint correctly (the likely cause of the grey last time). As for the rest of the room... No change, no cupboard doors have been touched in three weeks. However, I did get confirmation yesterday that the construction zipper that one can put on a cut in a plastic sheet which I ordered from Lee Valley Hardware is shipping, so we'll be able to seal off the kitchen/diningroom from the rest of the house and start stripping the cabinets without (hopefully) making the whole house unbearable with fumes.

Stupidity of the moment, related to the rising price of gasoline: There was a guy from the Attorney General's office on the radio, talking to one of the chatterboxes about what is causing petroleum prices to be so high (and forgot "greed"), and what we can do about the price of fuel. He listed four or five things, and yet he completely left out "use less? drive something that uses less or doesn't use any gas at all?" We know which side he's on, since 54¢ on every gallon of gasoline sold is state taxes. I have absolutely no objection to paying taxes. It's that other $2.90 (up from half that a year ago) that I want some relief from and explanation of. According to the radio, the state is converting some of its ferries to biodiesel derived from vegetable oil and the City of Seattle is requesting taxi services move from 15mpg Crown Victorias to more efficient vehicles... where's a similar concept being suggested to the taxpayers?

Wayne visited last Saturday and my sis-in-law Patrice visited on Sunday (welcome to the world's newest camgirl!), there's a comedy show tomorrow and Chrome's coming over this weekend. Otherwise nobody wants to be around me unless they have to be.

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