Elan

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Well, I *finally* got in touch with someone at the DMV who knew what the heck she was talking about. It turns out the original agent's 2-4 weeks estimate was a work of optimistic fiction; this agent said it would take at least 90 days and probably longer.

She did say it sounds like the letter was correctly worded so once they process it it should all work out, but right now the letter is most likely in a massive Inbox that was being worked through on a "first come, first served" basis so I shouldn't expect to hear anything until May or June.

They're not technically allowed to give me an operating permit until then, but she wrote up a case on my behalf and is asking the field office to make an exception for me.

So at least progress has been made.


There is nothing quite so cruel as a life on hold not because of sadism or malice, but out of sheer bureaucratic indifference.

It's been 5 weeks since Progressive notified the DMV that totaling the Celica was an error. I've heard *nothing* from the DMV, and even when the Impii went in, the agents said that they have no visibility into the Total Loss department. It's a black box that provides individuals no mechanism for even contacting them. So they expect me to wait and hope and do nothing until my insurance comes due in June. I am helpless against a government wall of indifference.

Even worse is GothBard's situation. Her employer has made it abundantly clear that he plans to fire her whole department at the end of March. The gaming industry is in a shambles right now, so without a lead GothBard would be in serious trouble. Fortunately, her former manager is trying to do a direct hire of her. Unfortunately, that hire is bogged down in corporate bureaucracy and there is nothing she can do but wait to hear the final outcome.

On the "bright" side, I expect two different outcomes: For the Celica, I expect I'm finally going to have to get a lawyer or the local media involved to get anything to happen. The DMV is far too huge of a monolith to do anything out of the ordinary for any reason, even a good one. For GothBard, direct hires are usually just getting a high-level executive to sign off on them, so it's waiting for the executive to have the time and inclination to do it. I doubt GothBard's former manager would have given her such hope if she weren't fairly sure she could get the sign-off, so it's just waiting for that signature to come through.

We'll see how things play out...


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OMG. My mother is in the ER today as well!

For what, you might ask?

Getting a black eye while working out at the gym.

At 92.

Yep. That's my mom.


I swear, my brother is on some spectrum somewhereorother.

As briefly as possible, growing up we did all of our backpacking and skiing trips with another family. The father passed away some years ago (15-20). (He's the one I always talk about who brought everyone in from around the country to tell him stories about how he affected their lives before he chose to end it.)

The mother passed away this morning and I got a text from Elder Brother to let me know.

The literal exchange:
NobodysHome: Oh! Sorry to hear that! Let me know if I should come up for a wake.

Older Brother: I don't think there'll be a memorial since she outlived everyone she knew :-) but will keep you posted.

Yes. Somehow he believes that if you live so long you outlast all members of your generation, then you don't get a memorial service. Somehow I think her son, daughter-in-law, granddaughters, and those of us who grew up with her would beg to differ. Plus my mother, who's only two years younger so counts as "someone she knew" of that generation.

So I'm fairly sure I'll be heading up to Seattle within the next week or two. I'm sure younger brother'd appreciate the visit...


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It's a glorious, pre-thunderstorm morning where the hot air moved in first, so we have clear, sunny skies and 60˚F temperatures at 9:00 am and I've opened up the house.

At first I felt guilty about opening the bathroom window: What if our resident rat comes in?

Then I thought, "Y'know what? This house reeks so strongly of cat that any rat entering the domain might as well be passing under an, 'Abandon hope, all ye who enter here' sign."

We'll see whether the rat's survival instincts are sufficient.

EDIT: The Cranky Calico just wandered in, looked at the bathroom, and muttered, "Now I am Death, the Destroyer of Worlds". Hide, rat. Hide.


Drejk wrote:

I wonder what her native language actually was.

Google Translate is very... Uneven. So it ChatGPT (which I started using in January, after some reshuffle) though both tend to do slightly different kinds of errors, aside of both having problem with wider context.

It was impossible to tell. She was either dark-skinned Hispanic or light-skinned Indian, and the name given was Americanized (as always) to as to not give a clue. From the way she pronounced "I.D." (the only words she tried to speak to me), I'm thinking Indian or Pakistani.


Speaking of modern age wonders, Google Translate has gotten scary-good.

I texted back and forth with our deliveryperson as she shopped for us and I was rather surprised at how eloquent she was; her writing was crisp and clean and made you wonder, "What's her day job?"

Then she arrived to deliver the groceries and it turned out she didn't speak a lick of English -- all of the texting had been through Google Translate.

She needs to find work at a place that lets her work in her native language. Her writing impressed me.


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OK, one benefit of the COVID-inspired service-oriented economy is the simple question, "How much would I be willing to pay to NOT have to deal with that?"

We needed to do a Costco run, and GothBard wanted to come with, so we didn't get there until 2 in the afternoon. And without realizing it, during a President's Day Sale weekend. (I honestly didn't know that Costco did sales.)

It was a madhouse.

So I said, "I'm not going in there, but I'll pay someone else to do it," calculated how long it would take that poor person to deal with the insanity, placed the online order with a tip commensurate with how much *I* didn't want to go and how much time I think they're going to lose in that crush of humanity.

The Costco shopper will be very happy. I will be very happy. Win-win!


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Speaking of "How to teach math", I find it depressing that:
(1) I still believe that the Socratic method is the best method of teaching ever invented.
(2) I also believe that 99.9% of all teachers believe that they're using it, but they aren't.

Hint: If you've been talking for two minutes straight without a single student saying a word, you aren't using the Socratic method. Teaching is a conversation, not a lecture.


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Dancing Wind wrote:

Algebra is back, baby!!

Apparently there are "math wars" in California

Quote:
California ranks in the bottom quartile among all states and U.S. territories for 8th grade math scores.

Don't. Get. Me. Started.

It's been an eternal cycle of stupid since the late 1970s, and none of this is new:

(1) "Aaah! Our kids don't have a 100% pass rate in math! We need to do something to improve their scores, get more of them to pass, and reduce math phobia."

(2) "Hey, I'm someone with a degree in Education (almost NEVER math) and I think this new way to teach math would solve the problem!"

(3) "That's awesome! Let's implement it at once without doing ANY field research or surveying a significant number of people with degrees in mathematics. What can possibly go wrong?"

(4) Return to Step 1.

It's not that California keeps trying new ways to teach. It's that we're so d**ned reactive that we mandate new ways to teach without doing any significant research on whether the new ways are better or worse than the old. Heck, my infamous story of the student who couldn't figure out six times seven without a calculator comes from someone who went to California schools in the 1980s.

Bad California math is nothing new.


Limeylongears wrote:
I got married today.

Win!


Ah, well. Can't win 'em all. Mail came and nothing from the DMV, and I don't have time to sit on chat this afternoon waiting to find out whether I can get a competent rep who can tell me anything.


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Drejk wrote:

Wait, what?

Impus Major returned a laptop before I had the chance to get my claws on it?!

Dammit! Lazy kobolds!

Wow... I'm amazed I didn't tirade about that little "gem" of a laptop. When Impus Minor started at DVC, we got him a little mini-laptop for note-taking and working at school. He wanted something sturdy, ultra-light, and with a long battery life. It wasn't cheap, but we got him a really nice Dell.

So this semester Impus Major said he needed a laptop. I asked, "Do you want the same one Impus Minor has?", and he said, "Yes."

And hoo, boy. I am really getting sick to death of minimalist designers who think that people don't like things like menus, touchpads, or even keys.

The 2024 version of the laptop doesn't have a visible touchpad; you just have to guess where it is and there's no tactile feedback for when you try to press the mouse button. I suggested to Impus Major that he should use a Sharpee to outline the mouse pad, then put clickable googley eyes on each corner to simulate mouse buttons. But then they also removed the top two rows of keys -- there were no function keys at all, and the top row was a touch-sensitive panel instead of a keyboard. Try typing with that if you've grown up touch-typing.

Impus Major declared it unusable and said that he wanted an old-style goblin laptop with a full keyboard that actually felt chonky like a laptop should. So GothBard took him to a brick-and-mortar store and he got a really crappy old-school laptop for 1/4 the price of the newfangled one, and he luuuuuurves it.

Thus, my return.


(1) The credit for Impus Major's returned laptop has been posted to our credit card account, and it's a bit more than I thought it would be. Much to my surprise the company was exceedingly honest about their restocking and shipping fees. From the start they said the restocking fee would be 19%, and then they only charged me 19% of the pre-tax price like they're legally required to, when most places I've done business with have tried to charge 19% of the after-tax price and you have to "remind" them that that's illegal. Then they only charged me the actual cost of shipping ($7.91) instead of the stated shipping fee ($20). So all in all I'm satisfied with the company, even if many would argue that a 19% restocking fee is B.S. (Being in tech, I know they need a tech to physically examine the laptop and do a full image and BIOS refresh, so while 19% is excessive they actually had to spend some money restocking.)

(2) Tested the new Celica speaker and it sounds great; now comes the question of whether I'll have enough time after work to mount it and close up the door before the rain moves in. But one more item off the checklist...


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Syrus Terrigan wrote:

i certainly hope that GothBard gets the good word today, NH!

---------------------

** spoiler omitted **

I've actually neither read the graphic novel nor seen the movie; it's on my "eventual To-Do" list.


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I swear...

Email #1: Congratulations! Your group has been re-added to this organization's mailing list!
Email #2: An announcement that Monday is a holiday in the U.S.
Emails #3-10: A bunch of Reply Alls talking about various coffee brands.

Y'know what they call it when you are involuntarily added to an email distribution list and then inundated with messages in which you have no interest? They call that spam!

Just had to spend 60 seconds of my work day filtering out the new list. Then 2 minutes tirading about it.


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Today feels like a very anticipatory day. It's not just that it's the day before a 3-day weekend. There's also a massive storm moving in and hitting tomorrow. And then there's the fact that the things we've been waiting for have started to trickle in: Our tax returns are done and the news was fantastic. Impus Major's laptop return was successful and the refund should get processed today. Impus Minor soldered the first of the new Celica speakers and I should be able to test it today. HR hates leaving things over long weekends so if they're going to make GothBard an offer it'll far more likely be today than any time next week until Friday. (I don't know why offers always seem to come in on Fridays, but I strongly suspect it's HR thinking, "Hey, if we send this out now, they can't possibly respond until Monday, so we can relax for the weekend!")

So there's an ominous excitement in the air that things are going to happen today. Let's hope they're good things.


Cole Deschain wrote:

My taxes are so laughably simple that I could probably do them myself...

But I'm lazy.

I know I've said it before here, but I did my own taxes for many, many years (1978-1998 or so), got hit for a hefty fine for failing to pay self-employment tax (I didn't know the difference between being a contractor and being an employee), then met an old friend at GothBard's 10-year high school reunion who'd become a CPA.

For the first 5 years I hired him, I kept right on buying MacInTax and competing with him to do my returns. For 5 years in a row, he did so much better than the software that he paid for himself and then some.

At that point I gave up and I tell everyone who'll listen, "Hire an independent CPA. You will save money every single year."

Corporate CPAs like H&R Block? Wouldn't touch 'em with a 10' pole. They're too much like the software. "We do the most basic job possible and we're done."


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On the other hand, my accountant went 100% paper-free and it's pretty darned awesome. Upload all my tax forms to a secure site, download the prepared tax documents from the same site, pay by Zelle, and we don't need a single piece of paper.

Needless to say, every company still ignores our requests to be paper-free, but it was fun to see how smoothly it all worked in principle.


Will the curse that is the 1970s never die?

Sooooooooo many terrible ideas were born that decade, and I could write a thesis on how badly they continue to impact the world, but today's tirade is brought to you by "Pidgin-Speak in Documents".

In the 1970s printing cost money, so anything you could do to reduce the total word count was a win. Adjectives? Too expensive! Articles such as "a", "an", or "the"? The document's perfectly legible without them! So you ended up with technical papers, user manuals, memos, and all sorts of other nonsense all written so poorly that it was almost impossible to parse.

And apparently the people who were taught to do this in the 1970s grew up to become teachers, and taught a new generation to do it in the 90s, who then taught yet another generation to do it in the 2020s.

Otherwise it's hard for me to comprehend how one of my co-workers who isn't much older than my sons is writing such article-free dreck.

(That's "dreck" with a 'c', not "drejk" with a 'j').


Nightengale.


Drejk wrote:

Speaking of games being shown on sales and such.

NobodysHome, have your gaming group seen something called Helldivers 2?

It's a third-person co-op shooter about... Well, Starship Troopers-like setting where the players are defending Corrupt Militaristic Oligarychy Sole Democractic Civilization In The Galaxy against threat of alien bugs, psychic invaders, and commie cyborgs, or something like that.

I played the first Helldivers (which wasn't a twin-stick top down shooter, not a third-person game like the second is) and while it had its charm it was far too much of a co-op centric game for me to keep playing and the second game seems to be even more of a co-op-centric for me to consider, but maybe your group will find it fun.

I'll make a note of it -- right now we're suffering a bit through Valheim 2 Enshrouded, but there's apparently a multiplayer co-op steampunk game coming out next week that GothBard wants us to try.


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Qunnessaa wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:

Bad Portmeirion. No biscuit.

Who is Number One? :D

My sister-in-law collects Portmeirion ware, though she inexplicably favours the more minimalist stuff. My kid brother was horrified when I told him that, of course, Portmeirion is The Village from The Prisoner. I may have inspired a certain low-level paranoia in him. What are sisters for, after all? :)

The entire reason that we learned about Portmeirion ware was that when we went to Europe in 1997, GothBard knew I was a HUGE Prisoner fan, so she arranged for us to visit. Then we found out that in addition to making eerie shows, they sell dishware.


Oh, wow, look at California go!

From Global Megacorporation: "On January 1, 2024, a new California law came into effect requiring employers to notify certain current and former California employees that provisions of any agreement entered into with the employer that would be deemed to be a “noncompete clause” under California law are void."

I had to sign the usual, "If you leave you can't take your friends nor your customers with you," clause. That clause is now void.

Not that I'm going to leave Global Megacorporation, but considering all the stupid coming out of California's government most of the time, it's nice to see them get something right once in a while.


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Wooooooo!!!!!

First news came in and it was our taxes. Our refund is 3.5x what I was expecting!

I have no idea what California did, but our refund nearly doubled year-on-year without us doing anything differently. And then I overestimated our Federal taxes by quite a bit as well.

I'd love to say, "Time to go shopping," but this is all, "Hallelujah! We can pay down the debt we incurred while GothBard was unemployed," money.


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GM Fair Wage wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:

And... sea of suck.

Just got a message from one of my colleagues that they were hit by a RIF today (Reduction in Force = Polite term for Layoff). I've complained directly to our upper executives about the whole, "Surprise! You're laid off!" approach, but they are of the opinion that it's kinder to the people being let go, so yet again today I got a "surprise".

I don't care for these surprises.

I know this is a bit late, but just an fyi...

WARN Act Avoid nasty surprises if you hear a rumor.

For better or worse, tech companies have bypassed the WARN act by providing vastly more compensation than necessary in exchange for former employees not complaining.

For example, Global Megacorporation could well cut me tomorrow. They'd offer me 6 months' salary in a severance package, and I could choose whether to take a lump sum or be paid over the next 6 months. In exchange, I'd sign a document waiving my WARN rights. Or I could refuse the severance, sue, and get my 60 days, losing several months' salary on principle.

Here's the relevant quote:

WARN Laws wrote:

What if my employer pays me for the 60 days instead of sending me a WARN notice?

WARN requires 60 calendar days' written notice. The law makes no provision for any alternative such as pay in place of a notice. While an employer who pays workers for 60 calendar days instead of giving them proper notice technically has violated WARN, the provision of pay and benefits in place of a notice is a possible option. Because WARN provides for back pay and benefits for the period of the violation, up to 60 days, generally this approach by an employer—pay in place of notice—means that the employer has already met the penalty specified in the Act, if the payment is not required to be made. WARN allows voluntary payments of wages and benefits to be offset against any damages that might be awarded. If, however, a payment is required by another law, contract or company policy or practice, it may not be offset against WARN damages.

EVERY tech company I've ever heard of gives employees at least 60 days' severance and benefits so they don't have to worry about WARN; they've already paid the maximum penalty.


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Syrus Terrigan wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:

On the one hand, back in the 1980s when they loved to run articles on, "What is the hardest/easiest college major?", a major in Business beat out even P.E. or cosmetology as the easiest major offered by any school anywhere.

On the other hand, when even basic mathematics is assumed to be beyond your reading audience, it's embarrassing.

Money 'magazine' did an article about a TikToker pointing out that hard work and dedication is no longer worth it. To paraphrase: "She said that making $200,000 a year, you'd be expected to work twice as hard and put in 16-hour days, so in terms of an hourly wage you'd be no better off than if you made $100,000 a year and only had to put in 8-hour days. We did the math, and she was right! You get the same hourly wage in both cases!"

It was... painful... to read...

it was painful to read your recounting of this intellectual disaster . . . .

but i find myself laughing in the face of the despair this prompts.

we're doomed.

Next CY is going to tell us he makes twice as much for working 30 hours in a week instead of 15... for the same job!!


Speaking of painful, for our 30th anniversary we decided to finally replace our rapidly disintegrating dishware, as replacements are now on the order of $40-$50 per item and we're not THAT rich.

So we got ourselves the nice standard British Portmeirion botanical series, which has existed for a century and will probably continue to exist for another few centuries. And in spite of the fact that we got boxed crates of the stuff (12 of each piece), every single solitary piece had a sticker on it. And not some E-Z-Peel sticker that came right off. The anti-shoplifting, "You need some MEK and 120-grain sandpaper to remove this sticker" stuff.

I have better things to do with my life than remove 100-odd indelible stickers on my dinnerware.

Bad Portmeirion. No biscuit.


On the one hand, back in the 1980s when they loved to run articles on, "What is the hardest/easiest college major?", a major in Business beat out even P.E. or cosmetology as the easiest major offered by any school anywhere.

On the other hand, when even basic mathematics is assumed to be beyond your reading audience, it's embarrassing.

Money 'magazine' did an article about a TikToker pointing out that hard work and dedication is no longer worth it. To paraphrase: "She said that making $200,000 a year, you'd be expected to work twice as hard and put in 16-hour days, so in terms of an hourly wage you'd be no better off than if you made $100,000 a year and only had to put in 8-hour days. We did the math, and she was right! You get the same hourly wage in both cases!"

It was... painful... to read...


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Owls well that ends well.


And hoo, boy. It's a good thing I told my manager it was going to be a slow week. We should hear back from both of GothBard's job opportunities this week (and we're hoping at least one is a, "Yes!"), and it's now been 4 weeks since the DMV received the Celica letter so it's time for me to check back in with them and find out whether they have any idea what's going on.

Hard to work when you're so distracted by waiting for other things outside of your control...

EDIT: Oh, and our taxes. But even our accountant said I did a darned good job at our estimated taxes this year, so all told it'll be a nominal refund that's enough to pay the accountant and a little bit more, which is about perfect, in my mind.


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This February is really giving me 1980s flashbacks: Yet another storm front is moving in mid-week, with potential rain from Wednesday (Valentine's Day) until the next Wednesday, and totals in the 3"-4" range. I remember when I was in middle school (so circa 1979-1980) there was one February where we got measurable precipitation every single day of the month, so this kind of rainfall isn't unheard-of. Over the weekend I even had to do the requisite "mosquito check" on my property (which is seriously just, "Did the sump pump drain the lawn? Are there any buckets holding standing water anywhere on the property?", so it took under 5 minutes).

It's just been a long, long time.


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Dancing Wind wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
you have to opt out of it.

My guess is that it's probably easier to hide the whole set of numbers than it is to spoof the main number for all the extensions,.

If you want to show the generic number (555-222-1200) instead of each individual number (555-222-1234, 555-222-1235, etc) it is either too complicated or too expensive, or perhaps not even tecnically possible with the telephone software package they buy.

And they probably want a group of people to be able to answer your call when you call back, not just the individual who place the initial call.

Again, I think that's extremely plausible for large companies. I was honestly surprised when my Progressive rep's direct phone number showed up on Caller ID. But for businesses like the doctor's or dentist's office where there's only one line for the entire office, I'm still perplexed.

I'm sure something has changed, and I like the theorycrafting, but I think at my next dentist appointment I'll ask and find out. The entire office is under 12 people; they should know what's going on.


Cole Deschain wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
That would be plausible, except as far as I know Caller ID is free and you have to opt out of it.

I know that my parents pay a small fee to make sure the residential landline is Unlisted- and comes up as "withheld" on Caller ID unless you have them added as a contact.

Maybe the businesses are tired of scambot calls just like the rest of us...

Wow! Hi, Cole! Long time no see!


TriOmegaZero wrote:
I assume the phone companies charge them huge fees to have their ID shown and that it isn't worth the cost.

That would be plausible, except as far as I know Caller ID is free and you have to opt out of it. But then I'm not a business. Wouldn't be surprising to learn that within the last year or two phone companies learned that they could start charging businesses for Caller ID and that's why it's drying up. Google isn't showing me anything like that, but Google isn't all-knowing.


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Speaking of Things that NobodysHome Hates™: Legitimate companies that have started turning off Caller ID.

My life used to be very simple: If a call came in with no Caller ID, or with a Caller ID I didn't recognize, I ignored it. But first my dentist, and then my doctor, and now my GI specialist have all turned off Caller ID for reasons I can't comprehend, so their calls look just like any other random spam calls from random numbers and I ignore them.

At least they leave messages. But gee, with the modern necessity of never answering your phone unless you recognize the caller, you'd think turning off caller ID would be a bad idea, eh?


Limeylongears wrote:

SNOW! AUUGH, SNOW!! WHAT SHALL WE DO? WE ARE LOST! LOST! LOOOOOOSSSSTTTT!

Well, I left work at my usual time, and got home at my usual time, despite the bus stopping all the way down the bottom of the hill. I was not wearing suitable footwear, though, so got very wet feet which is something I particularly dislike .

This is one of my brother's favorite videos from living in Seattle.


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Impus Major got a new mini laptop for his schoolwork, and it's always amazing to watch Microsoft bend over backwards begging you NOT to turn everything off. "Why are you turning off OneDrive? Why are you downloading a new browser?"

Oh, I dunno... a 30+-year history of screwing over the consumer and other businesses for your own ends?

(I'm laughing because just the other day I saw the whole thing about Microsoft purportedly using users' OneDrive data to train their AI, and Microsoft's response was a typical non-denial of, "We do not use user data without their permission," which means, "Yeah, they clicked 'I Agree' so we can do whatever we want.")


(And yeah, this latest cell phone tirade brought to you because I went to a show on Friday night and turned off my ringer and forgot to turn it on again. So last night I got a call on my land line from an old friend who lambasted me because he'd been 'calling all day' and couldn't get a hold of me. And of course, he'd been calling my silent phone all that time in spite of my telling him the LAST time he'd done this that calling my cell phone was a waste of time.)


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Wow... speaking of cell phone nonsense...

Whenever a friend calls or texts on my cell phone, I tell them, "Please delete this number. I don't use it, and frequently I won't see any messages or calls for up to 24 hours. Either call my land line or text or call GothBard."

I try really, really hard to be courteous and to explain that because I work from home, it makes no sense for me to have my phone in my pocket for the entire day. It sits on a shelf by my work computer so I can do all the two-factor authentication stuff, meaning that any time I'm not at work I'm not near my phone.

And yet because of the way phone software works it's always,
(1) "Hey! We're going to this event together! Give me your cell number so we can find each other during the event."
"OK, but you need to delete it right afterwards because otherwise your phone will try to use it and I won't answer."
"No problem!"

(2) "I was trying to call you all day yesterday! Why didn't you answer?"
(Checks cell phone log)
"Please don't use my cell phone. I'm very unlikely to answer it."
"You're a jerk!"

I don't have my keys or my wallet on me when I'm working from home, either. Does that make me an idiot?


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So I've learned, "How an introvert can keep a cell phone handy at all times."

I set it permanently on Do Not Disturb. It doesn't ring. It doesn't buzz. It just sits there... forever...

Then I enabled registered contacts to ignore Do Not Disturb.

At the end of the day, I delete all the missed calls, voice mails, messages, and anything else that came under the radar because of Do Not Disturb.

And my phone and I can now co-exist in the same room without defenestration.


Added bonus: So far it's hit only 48°F today (9°C), and highs in the 40s are even rarer than 90°F days around here; we might get 3-4 90°F+ days, but only one or two days where the high never breaks 50°F. And the Celica's heater is so OP that it could smelt steel... or at least boil a kettle.

The kids'll be safe and warm on their way home through this mess. Woo hoo!


And again I am thankful for my prescience. The storms are supposedly "over" around here, but I went outside in the wee hours and promptly told the kids to take the Celica in.

A big front just hit, with howling winds and heavy rainfall. And the Celica is the honey badger of cars: Its center of gravity is under 24" off the road and its tires are extra-wide so traction isn't a problem. You'd think hydroplaning would be, but it's waaaaaay easier to drive on wet pavement than the Prius.

Good call, Nobody.


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And today is GothBard's other "Big Day in Employment Opportunities": Her former manager is meeting with HR to see whether she's allowed to open a req for a specific person and hire them on the spot. She says she's got about an 80% chance of getting it through.

So once again we're thinking that by Friday GothBard may have one or two solid offers to get out of the hellscape that is her current job.

Crossing my toes, since my fingers were already crossed.


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On the other hand, the classic "protect your stuff by being nice to people still holds".

There are contractors working on our neighbors' house. I told them if they ever need me to move a car, or if they want to block my driveway, they're welcome to do so; I'm just trying to "keep my rebuilt Celica safe". So of course they asked about it, and now they're being ultra-careful around it.

Because I didn't yell at them. I offered to be as helpful as possible, then mentioned that I really cared about my car's safety.


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And speaking of, "This is NOT a helpful feature!", Slack now automatically updates your Status to Active whenever you log in.

So of course the inevitable happens:
(1) I take lunch and hang out with GothBard and Impus Major.
(2) One of them asks me a question, so I sign in and Google an answer.
(3) 15 minutes later, one of my co-workers sees me as Active and Slacks me a question.
(4) I don't respond for 45 minutes because I'm not at work, which is what I told Slack to tell people!!!!!

Simple rule: If a user sets a status, you don't get to change it. Period. Full stop.


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Drejk wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
I swear, I should confiscate the keys until we get the sticker...
Narrator: And that's how Impus Major taught himself how to start cars without keys...

Impus Minor. He already broke into the house using bobby pins once. The boy has talent.


It's really frustrating when you can't even convince your own family members that convenience isn't everything.

On the one hand, morally we're in the right: The Celica was totaled by mistake and we have the various letters from all the relevant agencies except the DMV that it was a mistake and that the issue needs to be resolved by the DMV.

But according to the DMV, the car is still totaled so any time we're driving it we're driving illegally. This became far worse as of February 1 because now our registration stickers are expired. And any CHP officer who decides they don't like us can slap us with a "fix it" ticket which, if not addressed within 6 months, can lose us the car.

So I've told the whole family, "Do not drive the Celica unless it's your last option."

And of course now that the rain has hit they're all taking it preferentially because it drives so much better in inclement weather.

"What part of *NO* did you not understand?"

I swear, I should confiscate the keys until we get the sticker...


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BigNorseWolf wrote:

When our newfie brought home an entire baby rabbit in her mouth it was adorable if scary. Since the thing fit entirely in her mouth, my sister thought she was getting a tennis ball or something out of her mouth and then IT MOVED.

Despite the screaming the bunny was set outside in the front lawn without harm.

It was much less adorable when she brought home half of an adult rabbit.

One of GothBard's most epic tales of cat horror was when she was house-sitting my parents' place while we were off backpacking, and the uber-stupid, uber-lazy tom brought in what she thought was a dead baby opossum. Then it twitched, and she didn't have the heart to kill it herself so she called a friend.

And the tom brought in a second baby opossum... and a third... and a fourth...
...and then they all showed GothBard what "playing possum" meant.

Apparently she and her friend took 90 minutes rounding up the horde of baby opossums running loose in the house, and the tom who brought them in did NOTHING to help. (He panicked the moment they moved and hid for the duration.)


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Well, pretty much exactly what I was hoping for out of the interview: She did quite well, but everyone kept talking about how "hardcore" the position is, and how "there's always something happening". So now she won't be disappointed if she doesn't get it because she's old enough not to need the high-stress lifestyle, but she set her pay demands high enough that if she does get it at least she'll feel she's earning the stress.

As I said, we'll know on Friday.

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