Monthly Archives: March 2005

Thought Processes

Thought Processes

I really don’t understand myself sometimes.

I’m getting ready to leave a client’s this afternoon when I remember I’ve got a barbecue stain on my jacket. As I gather my things I ask myself, “Is it nerdier to leave the stain alone, or wear my Emergency Operations Center security pass to cover the stain?”

Hmmm.

Look like a slob, or a dork? That is the question.

Finally, the overstuffed, well not anymore, employee who has been hogging the bathroom emerges and I can wash the BBQ off my jacket, thus solving myself the humiliation of looking like I don’t possess the motor skills and coordination of a 4-year-old.

Gaaah.

I’m weird, okay. Get it now? Deal.

Now I’ve got to go set up Tigress’ BrailleNote PK. It’s just wrong that she got hers first. Just. Plain. Wrong. It probably doesn’t matter too much though, cuz I’ll just “borrow” it occasionally anyway. After all what’s her’s is mine. Right?

Oh, except, I forgot she told me, “What’s yours is mine, and what’s mine is mine.”

Again, Gaah.

She thinks she’s so cute.

She is, but really, don’t you all think that’s beside the point completely?

No? Well fine then.

I guess a hot looking Italian just can’t win anymore.

So That’s What an Earthquake Feels Like

So That’s What an Earthquake Feels Like

Tigress has one of those slightly posessed washing machines that shakes
like crazy when it’s washing clothes. It’s never really been a big deal
before, but this morning was just different.

I walked into the bathroom to do my thing and all of the sudden I felt a
nice little shaking. Not just the floor vibrating like usual, but the
whole friggin toilet was vibrating.

Man, that was just not right.

Mixed Day

Mixed Day

Today started off extremely well.

This morning was out annual statewide tornado drill. I had volunteered to act as Net Control for the morning net. My job was to handle traffic on the channel and in a real storm, or disaster, make sure that traffic got relayed where it needed to be.

I got to the EOC just before 10. As I walked into the back entrance, which immediately leads into a flight of stairs one of the dispatchers saw me and started to tell me to be careful. I think she thought I was in the wrong place and was going to fall because I didn’t know the stairs were there or something. She stopped when she saw my security pass, and one of het co-workers said I was with County RACES and had been around before. I was pretty surprised that one of them recognized me, but it was cool.

I went into the radio room and got set up. I had never been in there before during the day and didn’t realize it was the central communications point for the EOC during an event. All 3 of the EOC staff were there manning consoles. I got set up and within moments was told by our EMA director that we had a simulated tornado watch.

I put out the call for our people to stand by for a probable escallation within moments and stood by. It got pretty crazy in there. The EOC staff was making phone calls, running there alerting lists, and getting a couple fire engines in place to check on 3 sirens that weren’t polling right from the computer display.

I kept putting out the reminders that we were in a test tornado watch and to stand by.

Man, when the alarms go off, they really go off.

The EOC’s weather radio, the weather radio on our repeater, and the teleprinter all went off simultaniously.

This started a new round of activity. EOC staff recalled the radio stations, nursing homes, the hospital, schools, day care centers, and others, to tell them we were now in a simulated tornado warning.

I brought our net into formal operations and took check-ins from listening stations.

We secured around 1030 hours and the EOC went back to normal activity.

I had a great time doing it. I got complimented on how I ran the net, as well as a nice compliment from the EMA director on my log sheet being clean, concise, and complete.

I don’t do this stuff for the recognition. I love doing it. I went back to work feeling really amped up and excited. I love what I do with computers, but sometimes I wonder if I should look into a career in emergency management or dispatching.

More to ponder I guess.

***

Tigress has to plan all the programs for the Lions Club this month. She had me give a presentation on The National Federation of the Blind. With the exception of the projector not working, it went really well.

***

We looked at our first house. It was so-so. We’re not really loving it, so we’ll most likely pass. It’s a lot of money to consider and we got a little concerned when we realized we would be paying $100,000 in interest. We figured out that if you pay the mortgage early, you don’t have to pay the rest of the interest. Now we actually understand how it’s possible to make money on a home. It was a little unclear last night.

untitled

untitled

Since I told Sas that I
update this more frequently than my old site, I thought I’d make that a
reality.

Today was quite exhausting. I was at a customer’s office, they’re an
independent living center, and was going to go work on one of their
client’s computers. Since the Tigress forgot our lunches, we were
waiting on someone to bring something. My ride arrived before my food
did, leaving my stomach in a tortured state of unrest.

This appointment was supposed to happen at 1300 and last no longer than
an hour. I had a hair cut scheduled for 1530 and had plenty of time to
get it done right? Well, if this wasn’t the evil day of timewarps and
blackholes converging just to mess with me (darn you Newton, this is all
your fault, somehow) I’d have been correct.

Well, I don’t get to the client’s until 1400. It takes much longer
(thanks Bill Gates and your horrific Windows 98) and I don’t get out
until 1525. I’ve gotten a phone call in the meantime telling me my food
has arrived. My original plan was to get my hair cut, take some stuff to
the post office, and head for Tigress’ for the evening. I got back to
the office at 1535 and ate, read inhaled, my burger and fries. I shoot
the shopping list off the embosser for Tigress, log into the customer’s
server from a different computer and change the server time. This needed
to happen because the server’s clock was 15 minutes fast and screwing up
the timesheet system I wrote for them.

I’m on the way out the door, when the admin director stops me and asks
if I knew the printers were down.

Printers? Nope, didn’t touch them. All I did was…

Yeah, then it hits me.

This happened the last time I used Terminal Services to log into the
server. The print spooler, which controls printing services, crashed.

What this has to do with me logging in to change the time is beyond me,
but I’m sure going to find out.

Anyway. Fifteen minutes later the server is restarted.

Twenty minutes later, the incompetant, selectively hearing-impaired,
individuals who didn’t save their work when advised to do so, by my
soothing tennor voice, are back online and happy.

Time check, 1625. I need to be downtown to catch my bus at 1645. I grab
my ever-present backpack, my suitcase of dirty laundry, and beat feet
for the Post Office.

After stopping for Squad 1 to pull out of the bay at the fire station, I
make it there in plenty of time to get my packages stamped and mailed.
On the way back, I’m once again stopped by Squad 1, rushing to another
call, in the opposite direction. Ah well, good for them. I’m just
jealous cuz I’m listening on the radio and not in the cab of the truck.
Anyway, made it to the bus stop at 1644, no thanks to the guy on the
moped who tried running me over at 5th and Main, and caught my bus.

Got to Tigress’ and washed out my backpack. Guess I forgot to mention my
sunscreen leaked all over. Everything smells like it, and I definitely
do not like my HTs smelling like sunscreen when I go to use them.

Don’t even ask why I’m carrying sunscreen in March. It’s painful,
personal, and I prefer not to talk about it.

I’m going to go sleep now. I’ve got a county RACES meeting in the
morning and we’re studying the required FEMA IS-700 class, which I just
submitted my test for online. Yeah, I know, I’m a nerdy over achiever.

All sarcasm aside. I love days like this. Crazy is good. Keeps things
interesting.