Vegas Home Vegas

Las VegasNo, “Vegas Home Vegas” is not a totally awesome spin on Home Sweet Home. It is actually my itinerary for next two weeks. Lemme explain.

A few months ago, Jess found out that the national Charles Schwab conference was going to be held in Las Vegas this year. She used to work for Schwab before her little company broke away and went independent. But, she still knows a lot of people over there and still works with them for her clients. Anyway, she also found out that the keynote speaker is none other than Bono of U2. For those that don’t know, Jess is a rather obsessed U2 fan and has seen them something like 9 times in concert. (despite the fact they’ve never been to Boise).

Obviously, she was geeked to go. Plus, since Vegas is one of my favorite places on the planet (I’ve been there like 9 times), it was a perfect match. So, she went to work on her boss to get the company to pay her way down for this conference. Needless to say, she finally wore them down and they agreed. She got her hotel and air paid for, and all I had to come up with to go down with her was my own airfare. No way was I gonna skip this one.

We leave Sunday morning (the 28th) and return Wednesday afternoon on Halloween. 3 days of Mandalay Bay. Of course, she will be in meetings and seminars a good deal of the time… I wonder if there is anything fun for me to do in Las Vegas… Hmmmm… I’ll have to check into that.

As many of you know, I started a new job in August with probably the coolest company on the planet, Wirestone. I had heard rumors, even before I started, that Wirestone has it’s own Las Vegas conference where they send all 200+ employees (from the various offices around the country) to Vegas on the company dime. Supposedly, the first few years they did it, they actually attempted to get work done. Well, recently all pretense of “work” has been thrown out the window and it basically turns in to 2 days of drinking. The words of advice I’ve received from those who have been before, “Bring your stunt liver.” Check and Check.

Not long after we got the go-ahead from Jess’ boss for her conference, I found out when Wirestone was planning their Vegas party at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino.
November 4th through the 6th.

Basically, what this boils down to is I am in Vegas Sunday through Wednesday with Jess, am home for Thursday, Friday and Saturday, then head BACK to Vegas on Sunday to return home on Tuesday.

Either, this will be the greatest 10 days in the history of mankind, or I will return a broken empty shell of a man. I guess those aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive.

Plus, the first Boise State Basketball exhibition game is on Friday, the 2nd, and on Saturday is Boise State Football home vs. San Jose State. So, I guess technically, the title would be more accurate stated as “Vegas, Boise State, Vegas” which might well be the definition of heaven in my book.

You’ll hear from me again, provided I survive.

Happy Retirement, Mom

Mom, I just wanted to take a second to wish you a happy retirement day. It is currently 6:37pm, so I’m sure you’re probably still in the office. If you see this, wrap it up! Go home. Relax a bit. Sheesh.

I’ve told you this for years, but you have given that place MORE than enough. You have been so grossly overworked and underpaid… and I mean damn near criminally underpaid, it is long overdue for you to leave.

Your boss… er… EX boss is in for a rude awakening when come Monday and you’re not there. She will try to fill your position for what she paid you, and maybe then she will realize how good she had it with you around. She won’t be able to find 3 people who earned what you did to split the work you covered.

Now, you can relax. Check that… you should relax, but you probably won’t. At least you won’t have to dread the end of the month any more. Plus, you can travel whenever you damn well feel like it. How great will that be?

Even better, you can now jump into the junk biz full time with dad! How exciting will that be!?

… And begins again

Today was the first day of my next career.  I have to admit, it was a strange feeling that I haven’t had in a long time.  Everyone knows those first day jitters, be it in a new school or job.  Just those butterflies about what’s new and different.

New faces, new places.

But everyone I met was exceptionally friendly.  I think I will fit in just fine.  I did bring 4 dozen Krispy Kremes to bribe my way to a leg up in people’s minds.  You gotta do what ya gotta do.

Of course, my first day didn’t exactly come off without a hitch due to a combination of issues.

Apparently a developer left the company yesterday, and he had a desk by the windows.  Thus, there was a seniority rule in effect for anyone who wanted to sit there.   All this shifting could cause a cascade of desk moves, so exactly where I would sit was up in the air.

But the bigger issue was that the PC they ordered for me was on backorder.  It was supposed to arrive today, but somehow got delayed until tomorrow.   So, I had nothing to work on, nor anywhere to do it… but everything should come together tomorrow.

Basically, my day went like this.  I got there about 8:45 after making the Krispy Kreme run and after a quick loop around the office, it was time to get down to all the paperwork.  Who doesn’t love paperwork anyway?  After getting that all finished, I met with some of the tech people for a bit.  Then, Mike, the tech manager, pretty much said that I could bug out if I wanted to, since there wasn’t much for me to do.  I figured I might as well, since I didn’t want to keep anyone else from their work by entertaining me.  So, I left about 10:30 with plans to return at 3pm for the tech team meeting.

That meeting took all of 30 minutes, so all in all I “worked” just over 2 hours today… and that was STILL more than I had to do at HP.

Tomorrow, I’m heading in at noon (as they need to have time to receive and setup my PC).   Whew… all this work is really taxing!

A few more post HP thoughts.

I have to say, it is now quite strange to drive past HP and realize that I no longer work there.  Just a very odd feeling.  Also, another odd feeling was to be technically unemployed for an entire weekend.  I mean, the last time that happened was in 1994 when I was laid off from the law firm runner position before I started delivering pizzas for Pizza Hut.  Thats a long time.  I suppose, technically it is only the second time since I started working at the age of 16 to not currently be employed, and that was when I quit Nu Look Car Wash in the last few months of my senior year to be able to enjoy those festivities.  Of course, I started working immediately after graduation.

I have to admit, I feel a bit odd about not working today or tomorrow morning, despite the fact that this is no fault of my own.  Damn this pesky work ethic!

Anyway, I’m off and running in Wirestone’s corral.  Granted, I didn’t exactly shoot from the gates at top speed, but I will get there soon enough.

And so it ends…

Door ClosingThis is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

-T.S. Eliot

Indeed, this is how my HP world ended. Certainly not a bang, but with a whimper. I got home from what was my last “day” with HP and started this post. Actually, this day was exactly 38 minutes long. My exit interview was scheduled for 9:30am Friday morning. I arrived a little before 9 to finish cleaning up some things on my PC and to get my last load of crap out to the car.

I find it amusing that they still call it an “exit interview”. Quite frankly, it was more of an “escort out of the building” than an interview. According to the HP Portal, the exit interview consists of sitting down with one’s manager who asks about why you’re leaving, your overall HP experience, how they could improve things, etc. In actuality, here’s how it went.

The guy performing the “interview” was someone I’d never met since my latest manager (as of 3 weeks ago, I think the 10th I’ve had in 8 years) was remote. In fact, I spoke to my actual manager exactly once. So, this process was sub-contracted out to a local manager. Now, he was a nice enough guy. I think he was more happy that my leaving was on good terms. I really got the impression that he’s done more than one of these where the person leaving is none too pleased about it. Welcome to the wonderful world of corporate layoff culture. Anyway, I soon realized that there was going to be no “interview”. I gathered up my remaining shit and headed to the door.

Opened the card controlled double doors, handed him my badge, and poof… Gone. That’s it. The ultimate whimper.

The accompanying picture you see above is, in fact, the final door closing on my HP career. I was able to whip out my camera and snatch one shot before the door finished closing. Not often that you get an image of both and actual and metaphorical event in one shot.

Continue reading “And so it ends…”

Thank God It’s August

Summer HeatWe made it.  It is finally August and I couldn’t be happier.

I barely survived the smoking, sun-scarred moonscape that was existence here in July.   In case you’re not from here or didn’t leave your house for a full month (in either case, I envy you) but July was officially the hottest month on record here in Boise.  The Statesman said that there were 14 days of 100+ temps.  Well, if you look at this pdf you will see that in addition to those “official” triple digit temps, there were 8 additional days that were 97-99.  As I see it, if you’re driving around and its 97 or above ‘officially’ you will find somewhere in some parking lot or whatever is over 100.  I think that should count.  Just because where they took the measurement didn’t hit 100 doesn’t mean that somewhere you were didn’t.

That makes 22 out of 31 days that were WAY to friggin hot.  Not to mention, its not like those other 9 days were cool and breezy.  They were still hotter then hell.

Continue reading “Thank God It’s August”

Offer Extended!

Hi Everyone. Quick update before we head out of town to McCall for the weekend.

They extended me an official offer! Their initial offer was a little low salary wise, so I countered and asked for a little bit more and they gladly met my requirements. (I agonized over actually sending it, but it worked out.)

All I have left to do is to officially sign it and set up a start date. That will be done on Monday.

I can finally exhale and relax. It’s been a LONG time coming.

Thanks again to all of your for your well wishes over the past month. It is ALL worthwhile.

More on Monday. Hope you enjoy your weekend as much as I will.

While We’re Waiting

It is really impressive just how much you all seem to care about this little job adventure in my life.  I’ve gotten more blog page loads and comments (not to mention IM’s, text messages, calls and emails) about this offer than I have on just about anything else.

For the record… I have not received any offer.  However, I am assured that I am their guy.  The offer will come.

So, I figured while we’re all waiting, how about you enjoy some of my past blog posts you may have missed or just wanna read again.

Like, why you shouldn’t go to Kuna
Or perhaps why we’re sports fans
Or the time I was robbed
Perhaps the time I overdosed on football
Maybe my magical fridge
Or my review of one of the worst books I’ve read.

At least all of that will give you something to do.

Keep watching this space.  As soon as I know, you’ll know.

All But Official…

Well folks, whatever you all have been doing, has apparently worked.

It is all but official that they are going to make me an offer.  The C.O.O had a meeting he had to go to at the end, but everything we discussed basically boiled down to the fact that I fit with them both technically, but what appears more importantly, personally.  They put a premium on their hiring people that fit the team.  I guess I do just that.

I’m assuming I will hear from them tomorrow as far as an official offer with all the nitty gritty such as pay and whatnot.

The position sounds very cool, and it really sounds like one that will have lots of opportunities to not only use what I already got, but to expand my skill set and learn new stuff.

But really, the selling point for me is the people.  I met half a dozen people and they are all very very cool.  I can’t tell you how exciting it will be to go to work and actually interact with folks doing the same gig on a daily basis.  It has been a long time since that has happened.

I don’t have much more to report at this time.  Keep your eyes peeled for further updates.  When I know more, you’ll know more.

Thanks again everyone for your thoughts and prayers.  I’m sure it made a difference.  (Although, the fact that I just plain kick ass might have had something to do with it too.)