September 4th, 2014

#4365: For the first time in 14 years

...I took part today in a corporate training class that was not an orientation. The last one was Arbortext SGML authoring in 2000, when I worked for Rockwell-Collins. Also, today was the first time in a very long one--since 1997--that I actually was eligible to be reimbursed for mileage and tolls.

It rained cats and dogs about halfway there, which was the very self-same place I interviewed for two different Geek Squad jobs I failed to secure, about a year ago. The new tires on the Jeep work very well in the rain, or at least a damned sight better than the almost bald 10-year-old tires that it had before.

I have to subtract my normal commute from the time I drove today, but anything over that regular commute is time I get paid for, making today an 8-hour day without half trying. And all I had to do, really, was sit and listen (and eat free pizza for lunch)! How can you go wrong?

Traffic was crappy on the way up (mostly because of rain) and extremely crappy on the way home (because rush hour) but what do I care? I was getting paid for it!

It was sales training, something that is brand new because Consultation Agents (like me) have not historically been trained in sales techniques. That surprises me; I had thought it a sine qua non, that sooner or later everyone in the damned store got sales training. Not so!

I think I learned a few things that might help me sell more, but my main focus is always on fixing the problem rather than selling stuff. That's a constitutional thing with me.

When I went inside the building, it was cloudy and rainy. The place has no windows, and I forgot all about the outside world while I was in the training session, and when I got out I was kind of surprised to remember that there was indeed a world out there, where the sun was shining and all sorts of other things were going on.

Man, can I focus, or what?

...but it was just about six o'clock when I got home (having left at 4:30) and I'm pretty beat.

#4366: I grilled shrimp!

They were prepared specifically for grilling, sold frozen; I defrosted 'em.

Tossed them with a little olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper; grilled on low heat for about ten minutes they came out amazingly delicious. Now there's a rack of ribs on the grill, slow-cooking (1.5 hours' cook time). In about 15-20 minutes I'll have to decide how I'm going to cook the baked potatoes and corn-on-the-cob.

Next time I do shrimp I'll have to toss them with lemon juice instead, but these were very good and evaporated in about two minutes. We ate them standing up at the stove....

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This AoSHQ ONT has something at the bottom I want to comment on. It's a picture under the legend, "Tonight's post brought to you by where your money goes - then and now:" and compares the typical American's budget between 1949 and 2011.

"Medical care" in 1949 was 3.2% of the typical budget. In 2011 it was only 7.1%? When it made up twenty percent of the American economy? I don't buy it.

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Fake cell towers hack your phone and you'll never know it's going on. I notice that the article does not say who is hacking your phone, but then again it seems as if no one really knows. So it's probably the US and the Russians and the Chinese who are hacking our cell phones.

Really makes me re-think the whole notion of having an Android phone, you know?

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Nine lines in the sand starting with my favorite, Hadrian's wall in England. Odd that this list does not include the Great Wall of China (they could have made it "ten lines in the sand") but that one's pretty obvious, anyway. "Goddamned Mongorians!!!"

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Stove's probably going to start beeping right about now....