"So there are Oliphaunts. But no one at home will ever believe me."
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Separation anxiety

Curious fact: in every position I’ve held in my current job (that’s three), my top assistant has been relieved of his position. The first one, I had nothing to do with, although I was immensely relieved that he managed to talk himself out of his job, since I was new, unknown, and didn’t want to rock the boat. I was involved with the second two, although my authority doesn’t extend to actually making personnel positions about people of relative stature.

In my fourth job here, I’ve inherited the local problem. We had to actually make up a position for him since he couldn’t be entrusted with genuine responsibility. Everyone knows he is doomed, his career over, a condemned man walking, except maybe for himself.

Well, after our chat tonight, I’m sure he knows.

Man I put on a good performance—a virtuoso negative professional developmental counseling. Tough! But fair!

Yeah, it’s harder than you would think to let people go here.

May 15, 2010   Comments Off

The escape

So Valve releases Steam for the Mac. Steam is like an iTunes Store for video games. That is, video games that work on a traditional computer, not on your iPod/iPhone/iPad. Of which the iTunes Store has tens of thousands. Steam is a big deal for Windows computers, and now that they have come to the Mac, Valve giving you access to your games on OS X even if you originally bought them for Windows. Classy. Browsing their store, they don’t have a lot for the Mac right now, but there were a few on sale that tempted me, until I remembered that I had stockpiled a bunch of games to play to while away endless hours here. And I have barely touched them. So I guess I’m good on games for the next few years.

Except for Wii games. And DS games. And iPhone/iPad games.

Anyway, I have to go play these games now or else I wasted the money. It’s like work.

May 13, 2010   Comments Off

Staying the Course

Just now finished teaching the first session of our second math improvement class. This class will go much better. One reason is that I learned a lot in the previous course about how to teach the subject matter effectively, but the biggest reason is that in this course we had a large enough population to cut the applicants who were below a 10th grade math level. I had no problem teaching individuals at any level, but in the previous class the population, based on our initial test results, consisted of students performing as low as third grade math to beyond high school level. Since we are all doing our full time job in addition to the class, it was virtually impossible to manage.

I just did an introductory overview today, quickly covering many topics that we’ll later cover in depth, but in many ways it felt like we already went further in this class than we did in two weeks in the previous class.

In other news, I received the news today that I am cleared to spend at least one, and probably two more years in my current assignment and location. Now, we just need to figure out the lodging and commuting puzzle and we’ll be settled.

I’ve started a transition into a completely new job, in charge of computers, radios and communications. I miss my old job dealing with logistics. If I were looking for a different job I would strongly considering making the leap into a new field in some sort of logistical support role. I cannot complain, however, that this new job offers me a lot more free time, and obviously plays to my strengths.

April 26, 2010   1 Comment