Archive for March, 2006
Today was the last day of my mini-vacation. I finally feel well enough to go the day without DayQuil, so my brain is free from interruption. Today was going to be a good day.
I had Mike wake me up early, because the apartment complex people had left a note yesterday telling us that they were turning off the water in our building from 9 to noon today. I like showers that are made from water, not imagination, so I woke up at 8:30. I got my shower, tooth brushing, and other sundry morning activities handled…
[Aside: I finally got fed up with my fracking 'd' key. In the last fifteen minutes, I just pulled it off, found a hair wrapped around the rubber post, and plucked it off. That actually took only twenty seconds. The remaining fourteen minutes and forty seconds were spent with me trying to figure out how to reassemble my keyboard. It was like one of those mind bending puzzles. You have to figure out that you first attach part a and b at the joint, then attach part b at the bottom to the computer, then part a at the top to the computer, then the key to part a at the bottom, and finally snap part b to the key at the top. Sproing! Now it works.
Back to the sentence at hand...]
…themselves with two minutes to spare before the strike of nine. I used those last moments to pour myself a cup of water from the Brita and quickly refill the pitcher. I sat down with said water and a bowl of granola for breakfast.
After yet more procrastination (I watched a Good Eats episode I’d already seen), I finally walked myself out the door with manila envelope in hand. I was off to see the wizard! Which one? Well, the wonderful wizard of financial planning, stock trading, bond maturity, and other money things, obviously!
[Aside the Second: This is the part of the blog entry where I would normally throw in a little bit of a back-story. It would give you some insight into what is going on, let you know what I'm thinking, all that. This fabulous story didn't go with the expected answer when I asked, "One lump or two," so you get two back-stories. Lucky you!]
Back-story A: I have always been a professional procrastinator. Even as far back as elementary school, I could put off homework (usually the kind that required multiplying 3 by every number from 1 to 12) until just before bedtime. In middle school, I worked that up to doing homework during homeroom in the morning. By high school, I had perfected the skill of doing homework for sixth period during fifth. So, any time I have to do anything that annoys me in any way, I put it off. Finances annoy me. So I put the dealing with them off.
Back-story B: My grandparents were super-awesome in more than just one way. But I won’t delve into every facet of their awesomeness today, because I like to keep my entries slightly shorter than The Iliad. The relevant awesomeness has my grandparents giving me bonds when I was a child that have recently been maturing. This is a fabulous idea. The first one matured just shortly after I graduated college, and could not have possibly come at a better time.
So, anyway, I have these bonds. And they’ve been doing nothing but sitting in an envelope for months. Okay, years. And my dad’s been on my case at every opportunity. I finally promised (and I don’t break promises) to “go to Fidelity” (a phrase that has been ringing in my ears, in my dad’s voice) during my week off between jobs.
Of course, that means I waited until the last day of my week off.
Off I went, on my journey eastward, to Fidelity. I was nervous. I had no idea what I was doing. Luckily, they were nice people. I met with two different people, and set up an account. All good, right? Wrong. I had only brought the photocopies of the bonds with me. They needed the real thing.
After some shopping, some lunch, an entertaining moment at the ice cream store, and some frantic searching around my house and my parents’, I found them in their little envelope under the coffee table (because, of course that’s where valuable things should be kept… idiot Diane!). I was excited and got right back in my car and drove the twenty-minute drive back. The same guy I had opened my account with was standing at the counter. Yay!
I showed him the bonds, we talked with the other girl I had talked to this morning, and everything came to a screeching halt. “Do you have your birth certificate?” I offered my passport, thinking that it would obviously suffice, seeing as it is a more trustworthy…
[Miniature Aside: Word wanted me to change that to "trustworthier," which I did. I changed it back when it told me that "trustworthier" is not a word...]
…document. She went into the back office to ask if that would do. Meanwhile, I signed my name nine times, and account-opening-guy filled out some forms. “We have to have your birth certificate. That’s the only way that the company that we’ll turn the papers in to will accept that you are no longer a minor.” (The bonds are, of course, made out in custody to my Mom.)
I was baffled. I babbled a bit about how I had needed the birth certificate to get the passport, but she didn’t seem to care. Well, that’s not true. She cared, but there wasn’t anything she could do about it. So I called my parents, and we discussed faxing it. But it turns out that even that would not be enough. They need the physical birth certificate, damn it.
So now, I’ll be getting my birth certificate from my dad this weekend, and I’ll have to spend time while I’m at work going to the Fidelity branch in Boston. I’m thinking I might do it first thing on Monday, since the new job doesn’t need me until 9, the Fidelity office opens at 8, and I’m more or less a morning person (when I don’t have the death plague).
I muttered, “Damn it,” under my breath several times as I drove home. I’m annoyed. In what crazy world is a passport not good enough documentation of one’s age? Ugh!
Whatever you do, do not neglect the blogosphere for several days. It just took me two hours to catch up on my blogs. Holy crap.
In other news, something is wrong with the “d” key on my laptop. It only works about half the time. That is annoying. I will figure it out…
This is a quick one, I guess. My life isn’t particularly interesting lately. I sleep in, I work out, I take DayQuil, I take a nap, I watch some Food TV (okay, too much Food TV), I procrastinate, I clean, I cook, I sleep some more. I suppose I could write about my dad’s retirement party, but I don’t feel like it, so there. :-P Maybe later.
Yeah, I haven’t got much else to say. Why am I even writing this? I don’t know.
Okay, it’s probably not karma, but some magical otherworldly magic-type thing.
I just got off the phone with idiot #2, who called just as I was clicking “publish.” He took a look at his email log, and found that idiot #1 had in fact emailed my work email on Monday. *sigh* I talked with him for a while, we laughed at idiot #1 a little bit and talked about other things.
In any rate, it’s a special kind of day. Definitely special.
Just allow me a couple minutes of complaining time, if you don’t mind. If you do mind, go read someone else’s blog. I’m in a sour mood, so I won’t be saying anything happy.
I’m sick. I’ve been sick since Friday, but it was worst over the weekend. Yesterday I way overextended myself, going to the gym in the morning and my dad’s retirement party in the afternoon and evening. I didn’t get home until after 10PM, and then got nervous watching an episode of The Twilight Zone (the new one), so I couldn’t sleep until after I’d calmed myself down with some Good Eats.
This morning, I felt worse than yesterday, but I had plans so I wasn’t going to fuck with anything. I woke up, ate some mediocre muffins that I made on Sunday (apparently sick-Diane isn’t so good at baking as healthy-Diane), and got in my gym clothes. It was kind of nice out, so I decided I was running outside. I didn’t make it far. Luckily I thought to stay in our neighborhood, rather than running out on my normal route.
I didn’t even make a mile. I couldn’t jog for more than a minute before feeling like crap. I read somewhere that doing a little exercise when you’re sick isn’t such a bad thing. But I definitely was not healthy enough to be trying to run. So after an exhausting 14 minutes (I normally do 45), I had to go inside. I stretched, half-heartedly, and took a quick shower that turned into a long shower because I was tired and sick.
Then came the real kicker of the day. I was supposed to meet with a couple of my former coworkers for lunch. These guys don’t work in the department I recently left anymore; they left a year ago or so. One is still at the company, at a different site, and the other left the company altogether. We had made plans to meet up for lunch today at a pub in a semi-central location.
I should backtrack a little. We actually had planned to meet at the same place last Wednesday, but one of them canceled at the last minute, and the other one left me guessing, even though I’d sent him my cell number. At least that time I guessed right and didn’t go out there. I stayed at work and ate my emergency backup soup.
Anyway, after that fiasco, I told these idiots that I could meet with them today instead. I said, “Same time, same place, different day.” The day was agreed to, and I went to today thinking that was the plan. I also thought I’d made it extremely clear that I would be off of work this week.
So, back to today, I drove 20 minutes up to this pub, that I’d never heard of before, and got a little lost. I was no more than 2 minutes late, and had no expectation of these guys being on time. So I sat in the lobby of the place for 28 minutes, giving them a half hour of stupid time (way more than I should have).
Every time the door opened, I perked up and hoped to hear their voices coming in. Nope. They never came. I walked out of the restaurant muttering, “Idiots,” under my breath.
Just now I checked my email, after a nice nap. Both of them had responded to my “We’re still on, right?” email (which I sent this morning) saying various idiot things. “Woops… we went to [some other restaurant that I've never even heard of that is in a completely different town that I've never even been to].” “Hope you weren’t waiting…”
I don’t even know what to do with these people. The idiots must have either thought I was a mind reader over long distances, tried to email my old work email address (which of course won’t get to me!), or just forgot to tell me. At least one of them had my phone number, but no call. I don’t know what they thought.
These guys wanted so badly to eat lunch with me. They begged me for a second chance after the first one fell through. I gave up some of my time off, time I should have been spending cleaning (ideally) or sleeping (because I’m fracking sick and I needed a nap more than two twenty-minute drives separated by a thirty-minute sit-on-a-bench).
Don’t get me wrong; I definitely wanted to meet up with these guys. They were great friends and great mentors while we worked together. It’s because of them that I had the courage to look for someplace else to work.
But they’re idiots. I can’t even be mad at them because it’s not that they’re assholes. They’re just incapable of using their whole brains.
But I am mad.
And I am tired.
And I am sad.
I told them I was sorry that I missed them. I thanked them for what they’ve done for me. I just cried for a little bit (which is a special kind of gross when you’re sick, by the way).
I’m okay now. I think writing about it calmed me down.
Welcome, friends, to my second live-blog attempt! My first attempt went un-time-stamped and mostly un-read (except for Tara, yay Tara!) This one will endeavor to follow some of the example put out by live-blogger-extraordinaire Pauly and by drinker-extraordinaire Al. It won’t live up. I can promise you that.
But it should be fun.
You should also know that it will likely not live up to my usually high standards for grammar and spelling. I will not be spell-checking. I will proof-read less. I will probably spit stuff out just as it occurs to me, and no faster or slower. It will be an adventure for everyone.
Here we go!
7:28 AM: I walked up to the red-framed square windows that surround the employee entrance for the last… second-to-last (we’re going out for lunch) time. I did not get teary. After I badged in, and the door clicked, I entered the building and greeted the security guard.
“Good morning. How are you today?”
“Great, thanks. You?”
“Great! It’s Friday!”
“That it is.”
I didn’t bother telling him today is my last day.
In other news, I’m coming down with a cold! Yay! So, this post, in addition to being spell-check-deprived will also be store-brand-Day-Quil-enhanced.
7:33 AM: I read my email. None of it was relevant to me.
7:35 AM: I just noticed that my blog tried to ping-back to itself. That’s retarded. I deleted the trackback.
7:43 AM: I can’t log into our build server. They already killed my account maybe? I don’t know. But I’m pretty sure I was typing the password in correctly. Oh well, I guess I won’t be checking in that stuff. I’ll have to send it to my group lead. If I can get to the code… I wonder…
7:50 AM: Yes, I can get to the code. I’ve sent the file to my group lead. Yay email still working!
7:55 AM: I have determined that I, in fact, have lost my Unix account. Fabulous. This should make getting things done today really fun! My next-cube-neighbor just had to do some of my work for me.
8:06 AM: I am patiently waiting for my CD to burn. My computer is very impatient with me, and often turns CDs into coasters. As such, the only thing I’m doing while the CD burns is typing in here. I won’t even hit “Save and Continue Editing” until after the CD is finalizaed. This is going to take a while. Burning at 16x is so 1999, but it’s the only safe way.
Yay! The burn suceeded!
8:29 AM: I am talking to some coworkers about where to live and how to commute. This is exciting.
8:34 AM: Time for breakfast!
9:15 AM: Breakfast was pretty good. I got an omelet, with peppers, onions, and provolone. Unfortunately, my second-to-last bite had a bit of ham in it. I was pretty grossed out, and the taste lingers. But I have gum, so I’ll be okay!
I found out that some of my favorite senior engineers won’t be able to come to my lunch because of some stupid meeting. That makes me sad. Count of times Diane is sad today, one.
9:25 AM: I’ve caught up on my blog reading. I don’t think I’ll read my webcomics today, though. I haven’t read them all week and it would take too long to catch up. I’m sorry Laura!
9:38 AM: I went to drop off some equipment and a CD, and the people I was going to see weren’t there! Oh well. I think next I will go through the pile of junk to the left of my computer.
9:40 AM: One of the UI designers, who I just said goodbye to while I was down in that area (way on the other end of the building), just sent me a picture of a kitten hugging a teddy bear. It is super cute.
9:48 AM: I just walked about 15 hard drives over to a coworker. Lucky him!
9:57 AM: Left side of the desk is cleared off. Right side is standing in wait. I took off my long-sleeved shirt to do this sorting, because I was getting warm. I’m so breaking dress code wearing a tank top!
I just discovered that I forgot to bring a part of the hardware I brought down to the other end of the building. Damn it. I gotta make the walk again. I think I’ll wait a little while though, see if I can’t combine it with another trip.
10:01 AM: I just threw out 11 sticky notes. This is a relatively small number. I’ve been purging over the last couple weeks as I tied up projects I was working on. I like sticky notes.
10:16 AM: I have finished desk surfaces, and am moving on to drawers! I found a dollar coupon for the cafeteria that I can’t use. I gave it to my next-cube-neighbor. I hope he enjoys himself a few cookies or something.
10:22 AM: I found Tara’s clipboard! I know she’s wanted it back for a while. Like several years. She probably had to replace it by now because I’m a loser (in two ways!). Don’t worry Tara! I’ve got him!
10:26 AM: I opted against doing the shredding myself, as there was well over three inches of company confidential crap hanging out on my desk. I went instead with the “red box” method. I put it in the box, and a professional shredding company (they have those, apparently) shreds it for me.
10:43 AM: I’m getting my exercise today. I just walked back to the other end of the building to return that bit of hardware. They were there this time, and thankful for the stuff. Nice people.
I also stopped at the admin’s desk on the way back (it’s totally not on the way) to get a life saver. She’s nice and always has candy out for us.
10:47 AM: I just pawned off a years worth of Dr. Dobb’s Journal to a coworker.
11:00 AM: I am now deleting 3 years of cruft from my computer’s hard drive. It’s amazing the stupid things I keep around. It’s the pack-rat in me. I’m incapable of throwing something out unless I’m absolutely certain I’ll never need it again. It’s probably the one thing that drives Mike nuts the most… I’d fix it if I knew how.
11:04 AM: It occurs to me. I have most of my links mirrored in various places. I mean, I really only need to visit GMail, LiveJournal, Bloglines, and this site, and I’m linked to any site I’d check. But there’s an exception. Webcomics. I’ve been looking at those out of my bookmarks menu for years. Well, crap! I’d better go ahead and duplicate those somewhere. Seeing as I love webcomics, and I love to share, I guess I’ll just add them to my links over on the right!
11:15 AM: The delete I started 15 minutes ago is finally done “preparing to delete” and is now actually deleting. Yay.
11:26 AM: I have reached complete boredom. I was just watching the delete thing scroll. 17 minutes remaining, if you can believe Windows (and I never do).
11:35 AM: Damn vultures! The guy in the cube to my left (technically a next-cube-neighbor, but not the one I normally talk about) is so impatiently waiting to steal stuff from my desk. It’s annoying. Wait until I’m gone, seriously.
11:38 AM: Lunch time!
2:01 PM: Back from lunch. We went to Bertucci’s, which our admin let me pick. It was good food, and I’m extremely full.
Our super-sweet admin arranged to get me flowers and a balloon. When she came in carrying the flowers, I almost cried. Count of times Diane is sad today, two. The balloon she clipped to the back of my chair when I wasn’t looking, and only found out it was there when a cute little girl ran up and pointed, “Baooon!” Her mother assured her that yes it was a balloon, and I thanked her for pointing it out to me.
They also got an ice cream cake. I love ice cream cake. Good choice! But, of course, they wanted a speech. I thanked everyone for all that I’ve learned and commented on making such good friends. It was sincere. One of my group leads said, “So why are you leaving, then?”
A tear came to my eye. Count of times Diane is sad today, three. Our former interim director told me not to cry any more. I managed to keep most of it in.
I’m a really emotional person. It’s just how I am. So this is what I do.
At any rate, I brought the flowers back inside with me so they wouldn’t die in the car. Now I’m going to have to take two trips when I leave. Damn.
2:27 PM: It turns out that I broke the build a couple weeks ago. That amuses me. It does not amuse my coworker who has to clean up after my stupid (trivial) mess. We fixed it in a very small number of moments. Luckily they caught me just moments before I was going to delete the crap from my share drive where I did all my work.
2:37 PM: My stomach is overfilled with tortellini and ice cream cake. Graaaasahsddfjaasoindgzoinasdfnmx….
2:48 PM: I just noticed that the time stamps on my blog appear to be off by an hour. I wonder how the hell that happened.
2:49 PM: I found the part of my WordPress options that lets me change that. It must have been a daylight savings thing or something. I don’t know. Anyway, it looks like, unfortunately, once they’re put in the database they’re stuck that way. What a pain. That makes me sad. But not sad enough to count towards the tally for the day.
3:03 PM: My next-cube-neighbor just IMed me some very nice things. I’m teary. I called him a bastard. Okay, really, I’m not teary, I’m crying. Bastard!
Count of times Diane is sad today, four.
3:13 PM: I deleted my time card. I have to send in my time card. Delema! Next-cube-neighbor to the rescue!
3:27 PM: I think this will be the end of the live-blog. It was a good way to spend my last day, I think. But it is time for me to finalize the world and get out of here. Have a great night!
I would say I’ve used approximately 3% of my brain for about 4% of the day today. The rest of the day, it was completely off. Goodnight brain!
I am basically completely and utterly useless at this point. I handed off a document that I worked on carefully for two days and finished off in a two hour sprint today. The first three pages are pretty good. Too bad it’s four pages long, huh. The guy I wrote it for acknowledged that I am already gone.
I went to the dentist both yesterday and today. No one minded my absence for 3 hours of the last 16. They actually offered to get me in again tomorrow to use the rest of my insurance, but I can’t mentally handle that kind of crap. I’m glad for the month long dentist-hiatus.
Anyway, my brain is completely dead to the world today. Unfortunately, I fear it will be a zombie tomorrow.
Here’s tomorrow’s to-do list:
- Roll up and pack up my posters and printed comic strips
- Pack up my toys and my “expert” trophy
- Pack up this plant that… well… I’ll tell that story some other time
- Put a whole bunch of documentation on a CD for some research guys
- Return some hardware to the same
- Hand out the rest of the hardware that’s strewn about my desk
- Hide my monitor from the vultures (it’s been promised to an early vulture already)
- Gift my pile of hard drives to the poor soul who’s inheriting them
- Go through all my drawers and make sure I don’t forget anything that’s mine
- Spend some quality time with the shredder getting rid of my “company confidential” papers
- Clean out this computer
- Return the media I have from the test library
- Go out to lunch with my awesome group
- Make sure my group lead doesn’t need anything else from me
- Make sure my manager doesn’t need anything else from me
- Make sure the department head doesn’t need anything else from me
- Send out an email with some contact details
- Gift a paper airplane to each coworker
- Say goodbye
- Turn in my badge
- Drive off into the sunset
That was exciting. Maybe I won’t forget anything. That would be awesome.
I wonder what order I’ll do those things in…
At a farewell dinner for our interim department head, our new department head found out that I sing. Actually, I can only blame myself for that. I even told him I have an operatic voice, and that I’m a dramatic soprano. He told me I should sing at my farewell lunch.
That ain’t happening.
Just so we’re clear.
I was thinking that I might live-blog my last day at work. I don’t know if that would be interesting or not. My instinct is not, but it might be a fun thing for me to do.
I guess what I’m saying is, do you think it would be a good idea? Would you read it?
Yeah, I know, I never post this much junk in one day. But, you know how it is. It’s your last week of work, and all you have assigned to you is to draw up a couple Visio diagrams and check in some code to a CVS branch. Woop-dee-frickin’-doo.
Anyway, I am amused greatly by the similarity of today’s Daily Kitten and a Daily Puppy whose entry was just updated. It would have been way more awesome if they were both today’s Daily Cute-Baby-Pets (which I initially thought was the case). But, just that both showed up in Bloglines at nearly the same moment is enough for me.
Yes, I look at pictures of kittens and puppies every day. You got a problem with that?!