December 19th, 2012

My tweets


jes stuff

Every weekday, the roach coach pulls up across the street at the construction site at 10 am on the dot and his horn tune blasts the "i am here, come an get it" ditty.  And every time, I look at the clock.   Am I hoping he'll be late or early?  Did I forget it's 10?  And every day I wonder.  I have a nervous tic going here.


For years I dressed up every day for work, heels, hose, dress or suit...  When I left IBM, after moving to Seattle, I gradually started giving that up.  I sold a boatload of stuff through a consignment shop in the early 90's.  In the late 90's I went to work for Microsoft and all pretense of nice dressing disolved completey.   I kept a few of the fancier things for going out to dinner and stuff.  But, after 50, I got permission to eat whatever I wanted and quit smoking and put on 100 pounds which I haul around to this day.  So the only thing left was a winter white sweater dress that was huge on me and is now rather a nice fit but I have not worn in probably 15 years and some tops.  

A while back, I took all fo the very nice tops - knit mostly - and folded them perfectly with tissue and put them in a storage box and honestly forgot about them.  

This morning for some odd reason I remembered them.  I was looking for something semi-nice to wear to the unemployment office meeting.  What a treat to 'shop' in my own closet and I found a nice red sweater turtleneck and gray over sweater that look very nice and fit fine.  

I look nice enough this morning to go on a job interview!  I hope the unemployment people are impressed.


There were reports of snow all over the place around here this morning.  I saw nothing here except the usual Seattle rain.  Living in micro climates is something I may never get used to.  Especially in winter, you can get a wide spectrum of different weathers within a 5 mile radius of where I'm sitting on any given day.  I have - more than once - looked through sun here to see snow on the hilltop a mile from here.


I enjoy keeping an eye on my brother's shop - the back room and the front store - via his webcams. I usually keep both open and can even hear the chatter in the back room.  But they are working on their network today and both cams are down and I feel a really strong and really unusual sense of isolation.  Weird.


Amazon had the low end Roku box on sale for $39 the other day with a $5 instant streaming credit and I bought one.  I just do not like to watch stuff on my computer.  I like to watch stuff on the TV.  My smart TV is not quite smart enough.  It is possible to get Amazon streaming on it but it is a giant, major PIA and it only seems to work on odd Tuesdays.  Netflix is better but not by much.  I'm hoping that I'll plug in the Roku and fix both problems.  If not, Amazon can have it back.  It's on the truck for delivery  today.


I think I'll hit the road.  It's early yet but I'd rather kill time in my car in the parking lot than take a chance on being late.

M and M's and silly putty

At one point in my IBM career, I managed people.  I had a small group and we worked directly for the top guy.  Lots of pressure, lots of exposure.  It was not my choice to be a manager and I was somewhere down near the bottom of their long list of managers they wanted.  But, they guy we worked for was one of those who could talk eskimo's into buying an ice subscription so we dealt.

I used 3 tricks.  

1.  I took the only one of our offices without a window.  I really didn't care and they did and were well aware that NO manager ever gave up a window office so that somone under him/her could have one.

2.  I always had M&M's in a jar on my desk.  Always.  Want a handful?  Come in and get it.  No questions asked.  

3.  I always had Silly Putty on my desk positioned so that my visitor could easily grab it and play with it.  They always did.  It was a tension reliever.  A conversation piece.  A signature.

The tricks worked.  We only had to endure the situation for a couple of years and when I left (to come to Seattle) they showered me with the most thoughtful gifts and send offs.  It was very nice and very rewarding.

So I always kept a giant stash of M&M's and Silly Putty eggs.

These days I keep a glass thing of M&M's on the credenza in my hallway.  It's pretty and it's a great way to lure  machupicchu over here.

Today I had to dig into every closet and every box and cubboard to find an HDMI cable.  I finally found it and, also, turned up two never used before Silly Putty eggs.  Flashback!!


My Roku arrived (hence the need for HDMI) and it's all set up and operating just the way I hoped it would.  Nice and well worth the $35!  Now I just need to tell the Harmony remote about it and we're good to go!


The unemployment office meeting went fine.  The guy I got this time wanted a lot more detail on my log of jobs I've applied for but, fortunately, since the woman I had last time thought it was fine as is, he decided it was, too. Whew.  I'll run get to the end of my unemployment $$ in January, so I'm guessing that was my last audit.  At least I hope so.


Time to find that Harmony cable...

My new role model

I've encountered reception people in 2 different unemployment offices 3 different times now.  

The first 2 times were each women who were seated and barely looked up from their computers to tell me to 'sign in and wait over there'...

Today, there was a young man - cute, actually - who was standing.  When I got there he was helping a girl figure out what her next steps might be.  He was so thoughtful and nice and kind and helpful with her and totally ignored the ever growing line accummulating behind me.  I was early and didn't care and was fascinated by his manner.

Then it was my turn.  He looked me right in the eye and complimented me on my scarf and asked me to sign in and then he looked me up on the computer and determined that I didn't need to fill out the form and then told me that there would be about a 10 minute wait and I should feel free to use the computers or sit over at some tables nearby. 

I sat at the tables and watched him.  He never sat down once.  He greeted each person so carefully and thoughtfully - looking each in the eye and giving them a giant welcoming smile.  He had such energy and vibrancy.

As I was leaving, I noticed there was no one in line but he still wasn't sitting.  He was talking with a coworker but standing and looking him in the eye and smiling.  

I want to work with that guy.  I want to be as nice as that guy.  I want to be as kind and as thoughtful.

There's no chance in hell but I will strive to remember him and maybe a little of him will rub off.