Monthly Archives: September 2007

I Should Not Be Allowed To Use A TDD

I Should Not Be Allowed To Use A TDD

We got a call today from another agency who needed to test their TDD (telecommunication Device for the Deaf) and was wondering if we had one we could try. Ours is fried, so I suggested another agency she could try.

A few minutes later I realized I could use IM to make a call to her TDD. I could have used 711 relay, but our PBX doesn’t recognize that as a valid number and won’t put the call through. I’ve never exactly done this before, and thusly, made a complete bonehead of myself.

Me:
Relay: please hold for the next available operator…
Relay: IP RELAY RO ####F   DIALING ### ### #### PLS HD   
Relay:    RING 1  2    
[…]
Relay:    (STILL RINGING WANT CONTINUE QQ) GA    

Here’s where I get stupid. My brain is thinking QQ is Quit and GA is Go ahead (keep waiting).

Me: qq  
Relay: (WHILE U TYPED    
Relay: 7   (F)  yes   
Me [Still thinking we’re talking about waiting for an answer.]: no  
Relay: sounds calm)    (WHILE U TYPED     (HUNG UP ANOTHER CALL QQ)  
   (HUNG UP ANOTHER CALL QQ) GA    
Me: no  

It wasn’t until a minute or so later that I remembered QQ is the equivelant of a question mark and in fact the other party had answered her phone. Rather than embarass myself further I dug up the number for Relay Indiana and used that instead.

I found out later that she had answered and knocked the receiver off the acoustic coupler on top of the unit and the situation wasn’t entirely mny fault, but I still think I looked like a bonehead. 🙂

Driving Lessons

Driving Lessons

Today I got the chance to actually drive a car. One of our coworkers let Treva drive when she turned 25 and she told me she would let me do the same thing. We went to the parking lot of the Municipal Pool and I got to see what it’s like to drive.

I learned that it is not easy. I expected the car to start slowing down when I let off the gas. Yeah, not so much for a while. Also, hitting the breaks too hard is not a smart idea. I left a little rubber behind when I did it the first time.

Check out the video footage. I wish I had thought to put an audio recorder in the car and splice that onto the vid, but instead you get the color commentary of my coworkers. Enjoy.

A Quarter of A Century

A Quarter of A Century

That’s right. Today I celebrate my twenty-fifth anniversary of life on Earth. I don’t know why, but other than the presents, Treva making me dinner, and practically everyone in my family calling birthdays don’t seem all that much different than normal days. Not that I’m complaining about any of the above activities, I’m just saying it’s not like when I was a kid and anticipating my birthday was done with a level of excitement akin to that at which I accepted the job I was offered last week.

Ha. See how I casually slipped that in there? You want details now I suppose?

Patience my friend. I’m not done pontificating on my fabulous birthday just yet.

It all started at midnight. The witching hour. O-Dark-O’Clock. The time when normal people are snug in their beds, visions of the crap they have to do the next day dancing in their heads. Me. I’m chilling on the couch since I have been unceremoniously kicked out of the office so Treva can finish “the project.”

The project it seems is a treasure hunt. I am offered a choice however. I can participate in the hunt or wait until 2:31 PM. The time, in this timezone, at which I was born. Not being one to wait for 14 hours for no good reason I opt for option A.

After hunting around the house I have found the following items from my wonderful wife:


  • A t-shirt that in SQL basically says the entire world is clueless
    “SELECT * FROM Users WHERE clue>0”
    “0 Rows returned”.

  • A new earphone for my radio gear. It’s pretty cool. It still allows you to hear ambient noise. Plus it’s clear and clandestine looking.

  • A keychain with flashlight, red blinking beacon, alarm, window punch, and seat belt cutter. Let me tell you, that alarm is pretty loud. Treva desperately wants to find out how the window punch works, but isn’t willing to break a glass to figure it out.

  • A Braille Suduku/Rubix cube

  • A 5 gigabyte flash drive which I have already equipped with mobile applications including OpenOffice and XAMPP (a portable web server)

Right now she’s working on dinner. Steak [that I’ll help grill], baked potatoes, corn, apple salad, and chocolate peanut butter pie. Some of my absolute favs. Excellent!!

[Edit: dinner rocked. I will say that not knowing the filets were wrapped in bacon seriously goofed up my cooking times. Oops. Next time I’m sticking with the serloin.]

The rest of the evening was all kinds of fun. I ran out after dinner for a few minutes with Tony and Rett and picked up a For Sale By Owner sign for the house. When we got back I helped finish the dishes and then we watched Blades of Glory.

Blades of Glory. What can I say. It was… insane. When I first started watching it I thought it was going to end up being Nepolion Dinomite meets Dodgeball meets Highschool Musical. Turns out I was pretty much right. I told Treva it was, at the same time, hilarious, stupid, and incomprehensibly bizarre. I’m still working out whether I’d recommend it to others. If you have two hours of your life you don’t care about ever getting back and want to laugh at “men humor” then this movie is for you.

So, about the job…

*** Flashback ***
Previously on Niner and Associates: Niner was headed to Baltimore for a job interview.

Tuesday the 11th I flew out to Baltimore. Indy wasn’t all that busy and BWI was an absolute ghost town. I was talking to one of the security guards at BWI who said the day before was like a holiday, but almost no one was flying on the 11th. I gotta say if we don’t fly that day, they win. I’m all for remembering the tragedy, because it certainly qualifies as one, but using that as a reason not to fly seemes pointless.

I feel the need to interject one of the lighter moments of the day. I was getting ready to walk through the metal detector and had the following conversation with a TSA employee:

TSA Employee: Sir, I need your shoes.
Me: (removing my shoes and putting them in the bin with my laptop, cell phone, and wallett) No problem.
TE: What kind of belt is that?
Me: (Rearranging my not insignificant ponch so he can see it) Hmm?
TE: You’d better take that off too… and the jacket.
Me: (shrugging) Okay. I just want to say that I have no problem doing this in the name of security, but if you ask for my pants we’re going to have problems…

I spent Tuesday evening with one of the gentlemen from the department I was interviewing with. We had a nice dinner at a local place that was having a killer special on steak. You can’t beat $10.99 for a NY Strip.

Wednesday morning started off in a bit of a panic. I had to reemboss the 3 copies of my resume that I was asked to bring sinceI discovered a horrible formatting error which, if discovered, would have made me look pretty incompetant.

After that, things got better, though not necessarily in the nerve department.

I had 4 meetings that day. One with two people from the department I was interviewing with, one with the head of the Institute that department is under, one with HR, and the final one was with the head of the organization. I have to say the first and last meetings were the most intimidating for me. The first because I was told to, “teach us something,” and the final because I am always intimidated when I meet with this individual.

It turned out really well. I was offered a position and after talking it over with Treva I accepted it.

I will be working for the National Federation of the Blind in the International Braille and Technology Center. This is absolutely one of my dream jobs and I’m so greatful to have the opportunity. It’s going to be a challenge though. Moving across the country, making new friends (we have some out there already which will help a ton) and Treva trying to figure out what she wants to do now. I just keep praying that I’m reading the signs right and we’re heading in the direction God wants us to be heading.

Thursday I flew back to Indiana via Chicago where I spent a fun afternoon with our friend Ronza. We hit up the Cheesecake factory for lunch, did some shopping, and caught part of a random concert in front of the Federal Plaza to celebrate some german restaurant that closed (I don’t really know what the festival was for, someone mentioned October Fest, but I garentee the smell in the air was not sour crout.) before I had to catch my train for the trip to Elkhart.

We spent the weekend with Treva’s family and had a good time. The focus was taken off our moving by other family antics. I’m kind of greatful for that.
*** End Flashback ***

That’s basically the story. I am super excited about the new adventure in our lives. I keep praying for God’s guidance and wisdom in all our decisions though, especially what to do about the house. I’ve got one possible interested party and it would be really sweet if that pans out, but if anyone knows anyone looking for a wheelchair accessible, 3 bedroom house in the Richmond area let me know.

I’ve really got to update more than monthly. These posts keep turning into mini novels.