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February 27, 2006

good documentation

interesting... after spending a few minutes at b&n and half price, i found a few books that REALLY are helping me document and guide the project at work.

if you provide documentation and host a meeting here and there, folks actually trust you.

for anybody working on a seriously large web project, Web Redesign 2.0 is a good book. It provides sample surveys and guides for documentation, which also are downloadable from their website. (however, they also seem to be in un-selectable PDF form... which has meant a LOT of retyping on my part.)

this is possibly one of the most useful books I've ever bought. ever.
(and the decaf coffee i'm drinking isnt bad either)

i'm sitting facing 2 folks who just walked in -- one has a .Net 2.0 windows forms and custom controls book (and is talking into his wireless headset, which always freaks my shit out), and his girlfriend is reading The Art of Project Management. What strange world have I wandered into?

i save, and am shocked.

this is totally crazy. i pulled a certain someone's web plan document from January 1999, and it is nearly identical in scope to my own current doc, more than 7 years later.

so, you know who, be proud of the forward thinking work you did 7 years ago. it's a shame the organization hasn't gotten any further in 7 years.

i'm going to have to fix that.

brent c. in grandview...

I decided today to continue working (project planning) for the big web project which consumes my life 40 hours/week, and to do that, I picked up some half price books, grabbed the laptop, and headed to Staufs.

And, the guy behind the counter is a slightly slimmer, pierced equivalent of the overly famous young star of porn. And I'll bet he has no idea.

February 25, 2006

surprise surprise!

it's a weekend full of activity!

last night. after 9pm, while watching The Time Warrior, we heard the doorbell ring. Looking out the bedroom window, we couldnt see anyone (or any cars of anyone we knew), and the doorbell rang twice more. I got dressed hurriedly, and ran down to see who it was.

it was my sister! YAY!

she's in town for the big vet conference this weekend, and of course, wants to catch up. tonight. so, after she's done with the conference, she and her husband are going to meet us for dinner, and then we'll hurry over to TA's birthday party!

and tomorrow, we've got a homecoming party for B. Power!

so very social this weekend.

February 23, 2006

a burning question

my dad sent me a chili cookbook the other day. he knows i love chili, and he knew he couldn't eat most of the ones listed in this particular book. he paid < $0.25 for it, and it was actually valued at between $15 and $20.

it's actually a compilation of the top 50 winning chili recipes from some Marlboro chili cookoff. it's a simple spiral bound softback with full color, and is truthfully a well-designed cookbook for being a promotional item. the plastic-coated pages and covers make it ideal for kitchen use.

i look forward to cooking some of these -- they look amazingly good.

nala and i were joking last night about our "attaboy" tokens we get at work. i've gotten several for participation (and help organizing) our charity chili cookoff (which i've won several times, as well). usually, the attaboy forms can be used as showing initiative in the work environment, but not so much when it comes to chili. (actually, i guess they could show participation in charity fundraising activities, but that's about it)

i joked that in "other activities/hobbies" on my resume, I could say "ask me about my award-winning chili".

February 22, 2006



fyi, i know Marah from my old radio station.

as our friend Vic put it, "Never thought I'd know someone smart enough to win on Jeopardy."

and since she won (I have to finish watching -- I tivo'd it) -- that means she's on again tonight! woohoo!

February 21, 2006

quick gripe

sunday, gasoline was $2.15. last night, on the way home, gasoline was $2.01. this morning, on the way to work, $1.99. at lunch? care to fathom a guess?


yes. of course. 40 cents difference in 4 hours. fuck you, oil regime.

wait, wasnt i going to get a scooter? yes, yes i was. i need to look into that again.

a bit behind

it's been a loooooooooong weekend. my Saturday was lost because of a server getting compromised with a botnet and a nice remote control util. At 10am, I found out what happened... by 11am I was frantically calling folks, trying to get a key to the building. When someone finally answered the call (thanks P.S.), they didnt have a key for the server room. So then the calling started again, and another long wait for someone to come to the rescue (thanks Felix!)

Felix helped me get all the network settings changed on all the machines in that building. And then, get the printers set up. And then start to make sure the WINS settings were correct.

By 8pm, I was heading home, starving and cranky.

And, of course, being off on Monday meant a) working from 7am till 10am on remotely setting network settings we missed on Saturday... b) grocery shopping and running errands till 3pm.

ARGH. So, today, Tuesday, I'm well behind on my diagramming for the new website. I have an hour till the meeting and I havent started yet. Wish me luck!

(Oh, and Upper A Library has even more Doctor Who! YAY! I brought home 3 more!)

February 17, 2006

oh hens, why the pooping...

so, despite nala having let him out early, right after nala left for the gym, hens decided to mess up the kitchen. 1 cup in = 5 cups out, as the case was this morning. from one end to the other.

he wouldnt come out (which is usual), so, I moved his hiding place. he cowered. I picked him up and carried him thru the minefield to the back door, where i discovered the hard way that he had also pooped on the rug.

i stuck his nose in it, did the "did you do this?" voice, and he went running back into the other room, where he cowered in a different hiding place. this time, when i reached down to pull him forward by the collar, he bit me.

i picked him up again, and carried him back out to the kitchen. he of course wouldnt eat. he just stood there, and then ran away again to his first hiding place.

i cleaned up the mess. i coaxed him out with a friendly voice calling him from outside the back door. eventually we were friendly again.

but why the pooping? *sigh* why??? must spend time playing ball with him this weekend and becoming friends again.


it's over.

my 46-slide powerpoint presentation went well. I presented to 6 managers and was generally well received. the plans for our new, unified website are in the works; the next 3 meetings are spelled out, and i've gotten complimented by 5 of them on a job well done. (2 of those in shock and amazement at the level of documentation and planning).

but there was the one... who said nothing... aside from the "don't you look nice today! not that you don't every other day!" (thanks for the backhanded compliment, "darling") i was told by the manager seated next to her during the meeting that the mandated combining of websites and destruction of former branding was lost on her. she still didnt understand (after a YEAR) that the unit she used to manage was no longer going to exist autonomously. "But on OUR (brand) website" -- the other manager kept telling her "there isn't a YOUR website and MY website anymore. their's OUR website and it sells OUR products under OUR new name". She just didnt get it.

And so, either she was confused or angry, and didnt say one word to me during or afterwords. She still hasnt even spoken to me in the hallway, despite her usually (fake) cheerful nature.

Perhaps I'm being an asshole and just dont know it. But, I think not, considering our highest-level manager could NOT quit talking about the presentation to his boss, our director, or to the other managers. Or to me. I'd never seen the man so happy after a meeting. It was crazy.

February 15, 2006


powerpoint. nuf said.

30 pages and growing. ugh.


still sick, though not as bad today.

dinner turned out ok, but not fabulous. the bacon-wrapped(!) filets i bought were yummy, but the garlic fettucini and low fat alfredo sauce kinda sucked.

one thing I am totally sick of is the jackasses who work for FizzFac who keep almost hitting me as I turn into work. I have to turn left into the driveway as they pull out (turning left as well). I've been almost hit by two different drivers in garbage trucks who arent paying one lick of attention until they're right in front of me as I turn the corner. One of these mornings, they'll totally not see me and I'll need a new vehicle.

weird sleep last night. restful, even though interrupted by meows, but somehow odd. like there was no up and down, no REM, no nothing. sleep for sleep's sake. not that i'm knocking it... after 4 weeks of crap sleep, it was nice. it felt comfortable.

t minus one day till doomsday -- my presentation is tomorrow... which means I have to iron something tonight to wear. this morning, I'm going to try to finish up a powerpoint presentation, complete with definitions, assumptions, and bullet points about why we should be going down this road. and pretty graphics, of course.

this afternoon, i'll try to make any last minute changes, and probably end up working late.

February 14, 2006

happy v'day


i still feel like total ass.
i made a cake which didnt taste like ass.
i'm making dinner tonight, which hopefully wont taste like ass.
work is kicking my ass.
must work after dinner. ASS.

happy v'day, nala.

February 10, 2006

mystery meeting now over...

as i breathe both a sigh of relief, and one of "goddamn that sucks," i don't have much to report.

one of the 3 managers was booted. position abolished. duties reassigned.

well, he will be booted. that's why he's in a meeting now. after that, he'll be cleaning out his desk and having an exit interview. after he's done cleaning his desk is when the fun starts on my end.

all i have to do is check out the computers and make sure we still have access to everything we need.

February 9, 2006

mystery meeting

i HATE mystery meetings, and after everything going on where Nala works, I'm a little paranoid about the one my boss told me to put on my calendar at 9am tomorrow. Usually they send meeting requests, but this one and the one yesterday didnt. I'm still trying to put together what, exactly, it all means.

if anything.

Nala's right. It breeds distrust. Just fucking tell me what it's about and I'll be there. Being fired? Ok. Being reassigned? Ok. Fine. Just TELL ME. No playing these "I wish I could tell you. I'm sorry, but I can't tell you" games.


I asked the boss: "am i getting canned?"

"no, nothing for you to worry about. i dont care for the mystery either, sorry."

now that could imply that he doesnt know either (it's his boss who called the meeting). all i know is a) it has something to do with macs, and b) it has something to do with one of our subdivisions.

and c) i dont like it.

every time there are secret meetings, nothing good comes out of them. at my last 2 firms, the secret meetings were held to a) get rid of people, or b) to announce a new business direction/manager, who then fucked things up more.

i dont like it. at all. perhaps it's just something silly, but i can see it being something awful. like my being put in a role i know little to nothing about, or reporting to someone else. or both.

we'll see. but until 9am tomorrow, i'm going to be a little edgy than usual. hopefully, after that, i will return to my normal stressed craziness.

stay of execution

i got a one week extension on my project. thank god. of course, it doubled in scope, but that's ok.

i've gotta get my room reserved for the alumni banquet in April. the banquet is in the hotel, so there's no worries about driving back from some bar -- and since I plan on driving down on Saturday morning, I'll miss the drunken keg party the night before. The alumni advisory board at noon, the alumni on-air marathon in the afternoon, the banquet that evening, and the informal breakfast the next day. A simple getaway.

*sigh* with my luck it will coincide with moving. which, i suppose, would be a good thing anyway -- moving to a better neighborhood vs. seeing old friends.

speaking of the house -- tonight: move all boxes out of the cat room, and pull last remaining anchors from the walls. possibly do some preliminary sanding. possibly.

February 7, 2006


more antibiotics. 10 more days.

made an appt with an ENT, to address my recurring sinus infections. they were supposed to make it with my old ENT, but didnt... I dont know if it's because they couldnt get me in to him soon enough, or what, but right now, it's going to be 2 months before i can see this other guy. at least he's in the same office. the reason i wanted to see the other guy is, he's the one who did the surgery on my nose, treated me for nosebleeds and allergies back in the late 80s, early 90s.

tonight, i'm going to vacuum both rooms, move the cat beds further away, readjust the vent, and get rid of my old feather pillow, just in case. i'm sick of coughing and gagging all the time.

seriously... i want my life back.

February 6, 2006

sick of being sick

so, i've had this crappy sinus infection for 2 months or so. or at least it seems like a sinus infection. my doc has prescribed 3 different antibiotics, 2 of which i could take (more on that later), and nothing seems to be working.

this morning i woke up with more drainage than ever, a sore throat, and what seemed like a fever (although the house was very very warm, too). i got up, showered, and then realized it's also now affecting my ears (sinus infections often do).

so now, i wait. tomorrow morning is my next dr. appt, in which i get to growl at him for a) not getting back to me for 2 days re: my prescription running out and no change in symptoms, and b) finally getting me a prescription, but it being for something he knows i'm allergic to. (strike 1 for this doc).

my dad actually suggested something on the phone which might make sense -- what if i have developed an allergy to the cats? the new symptoms (today) could be traced to an actual infection, but with allergy meds, i should be able to tell if the cats are affecting me.

it's one of the things i'll mention to the doc, who, for the last two months has never once asked about finding the root of the mysterious sinus infection. "it's bacterial. here, have some antibiotics." $110 later, i'm still no closer to kicking it, and i'm irritable (due to lack of sleep, a nice side effect), i'm miserable (due to the sinus drainage), and i'm going to the bathroom about once an hour (trying to stay hydrated, thanks to two simultaneous meds which dehydrate! along with some nasty other side effects).

So, yeah. I'm gonna ask for a throat culture, i think. it's time they started investigating WHAT is causing this instead of blindly throwing meds at it. TWO MONTHS. I just want to not cough and gag all the time.

And then, I wanna lock myself in a room with the one I love for about 3-4 hours. With no Doctor Who.