It's like Mardi Gras meets the bombing of Dresden...
Wednesday, January 31, 2007
I opened up Blogger in Safari, and it can't load it. I opened up Blogger using Internet Explorer for Mac (and it crashed) and then it won't display Blogger. Does anyone know if new blogger has support for Mac? Or do I have to download freaking Mozilla again?

In other news, I'm working on putting up a virtual tour of my new condo (which is sweet). It's going to get done as soon as I sit down and find a web browser that supports Blogger (probably FireFox), so, I would say probably within two weeks. (I'm gone this weekend to the Steel City, and next weekend to Grand Rapids (maybe, we'll see).

Also, I need one of you nerds to tell me why no one has made a cable modem/wireless router yet, or if they have, where I can get one. I bought both stupid things yesterday ($130 ugh... at least I have a mail-in rebate that I won't mail-in and even if I did they probably wouldn't return) and I can't believe both products can't be compressed into one amazingly easy, single product.
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Life 2.0
At my company, one of the policies (along with paying 100% of health care costs) is to conduct performance evaluations every three months and use them to decide bonus amounts. I don't have a whole lot of intro material on this, so I'll state that I had my evaluation the other day. Without getting too deeply into details, I'll say that the majority of it concerned my ability to adapt to the demands of my current position, and that my future at Company X is carefully situated on the horns of a dilemma:

Option 1: Working 50 hours a week, and finding myself back in the ranks of the unemployed come April.
Option 2: Pulling a stool up to the company bar, and ordering triple shots of workohol.

So, over the weekend, I sat down and picked at my spaghetti and paradox sauce with Morton's Fork. While Option 1 would seem to satisfy my inner Ignatius J. Reilly, Option 2 would satisfy my father, and pay off my Honda Civic debt. For most other positions, the answer would obviously be Option 1, but there are a few things variables that need to be considered.
  • I like my job.
  • I don't know what else I want to do.
  • In the medium to long run, I stand to be well compensated.
  • Working a three month stint would damage my resume.
  • There is a lot of money tied up in this decision.
  • I finally learned all my coworker's names.
I considered these variable for all of about five seconds before coming to my conclusion. Why complain about giving up my life (i.e. time outside of work, not my life-life), when I don't have a life to begin with? Working 70 hour weeks will not impact my life in any of the following ways:
  1. I won't spend less time with the girlfriend I don't have.
  2. I won't spend less time with the friends I don't hang out with.
  3. It won't keep me from not exercising.
  4. I won't spend any less time playing the Xbox 360 I don't have any games for.
  5. It won't interfere with the time I don't spend blogging.
So... there you have it. I'm actually kind of excited. Modern literature was depressing me anyway, and I don't hang out with Hans-Georg enough to be an optimist. Out of my way peasants, here is my new schedule (Monday- Friday):

5:15 AM - 6:15 AM: Wake up, shower, dress, eat breakfast.
6:15 AM - 7:15 AM: Commute.
7:15 AM - 6:15 PM: Work (with a nice break to take a dump and read the WSJ).
6:15 PM - 7:15 PM: Commute.
7:15 PM - 8:00 PM: Dinner, either before or after a dump.
8:00 PM - 9:30 PM: Work.
9:30 PM - 10:00 PM: Dump. Brush teeth.
10:00 PM - 5:15 AM: Sleep (Hopefully I'll dream I'm at work).

The only time this schedule will change is on Thursday, because I'll watch "The Office." Also, if it snows, rains, sleets, or hails, or if some gets into an accident in my lane on the highway stopping traffic, or gets into an accident on the other side of the highway (causing people to look), you can add 30 minutes on each end of that commute, and a few more dollars in the coffers of terrorism.
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
Ignatius J. Reilly
I'd like to say that a myriad of eventful activities has kept me from blogging for the past... month (has it been that long?), but I can't. A myriad of activities, yes- a myriad of eventful activities, not so much. A few things that I have been doing include:
1) Eating Chipotle three to four times a week
2) Eating Taco Bell two times a week
3) Not eating whenever I'm home because I don't have food, and don't want to spend precious evening time doing errands
4) Questioning my apathy (exploring might be a better word)
5) Gloating over the Florida victory in the NCAA Championship to everyone at work (...since I now live back up North. If I still lived in Florida, and Ohio State had won, I'd be talking about how strong the Big Ten Conference is. Why? Because I don't conform!)
6) Trying to work just hard enough to be ignored, but not hard enough to be promoted.
7) Reading. Fiction, mainly.

I've been reading fiction because I can't seem to get pumped up enough to come home and crack open some treatise on cognition, Ancient Greece, the evilness of China, how technology is redefining humanity (along with its antithesis- how humanity can resist being redefined by technology) or any other of the interesting books that litter the floor at the foot of my bed. So, in the past week, I've knocked out John Kennedy Toole's "A Confederacy of Dunces", Jonathan Franzen's "The Corrections", and now finally working my way through "Fight Club" by Chuck Palahniuk. We'll hit them in reverse order-

Fight Club- I can't comment extensively on this, since I haven't finished it yet. It's kind of weird that I haven't read the book until now, seeing that the movie tops my "Top Five Desert Island Movies" list, but I haven't. I finally sucked it up and went and purchased it, mainly because I was trying to explain why it topped the list to someone questioning it's authenticity atop the list, and I felt like an impostor for never having read the book (though I've read nearly everything else of Palahniuk). And yes, the person debating its place in the Pantheon obviously had ovaries. So far, the book is understandably great.

The Corrections- There are some titles amongst "The Top 100 Novels of The Century" that I would dispute (Catcher in the Rye? Arguably the greatest piece of trash ever to win critical acclaim until the Black Eyed Peas. I only wish it had been written more recently, so I could describe it as "Dashboard Confessional: The Novel"), but this is not one of them. "The Corrections" is amazing. Period.

A Confederacy of Dunces- While I'll say "The Corrections" is a better novel (and in many ways eerily similar to my own life), I'll point out that Ignatius J. Reilly could well be my alter ego. I can't think of anyone in any book, TV show, or movie that I resemble more closely. It was like I was reading a novel about myself, unleashed. As he is described in Wikipedia:
Ignatius is something of a modern Don Quixote — eccentric and creative, sometimes to the point of delusion.

He disdains modernity, particularly pop culture. The disdain becomes his obsession: he goes to movies in order to mock their inanity and express his outrage with the contemporary world's lack of "theology and geometry." He prefers the scholastic philosophy of the Middle Ages, especially that of Boethius. However he is also seen as enjoying many modern comforts and conveniences, and is given to claiming that the rednecks of rural Louisiana hate all modern technology which they associate with progress.

Throughout the novel, Ignatius exhibits what would today be considered symptoms of depression. He operates under the mindset that he does not belong in the world and that his numerous failings are the work of some higher power. He continually refers to the goddess Fortuna as having spun him downwards on her wheel of luck. This type of thought may be akin to the psychological idea of "external locus of control" in which the subject believes that he is more or less powerless to alter the circumstances of his life through his own actions. Additionally, Ignatius shows the traits of an addictive personality in his inability to eat in moderation and regular bouts of chronic sexual self-fulfillment (he becomes sexually aroused by thoughts of his deceased dog and when he is lifted into the air by four black factory workers). His mockery of obscene images is portrayed as a defensive posture to hide their titillating effect on him. In addition, he exhibits bizarre aversions, for example to Greyhound Scenicruiser buses, the bi-level coaches used by the company at the time for its longer routes. He speaks of the horror he feels even just knowing that they are hurtling about in the night.

That's me in a nutshell, except my "chronic sexual self-fulfillment" is a lot more normal. Hey-O!

I've also been harboring weird fantasies (in no way related to sexual self-fulfillment) about how great it would be to be a writer. However, I'm not sure if that is really something I want to do, or just a reactionary opinion based on the fact I get up at 5:15 AM everyday and just want a job where I can choose to work, or not work (the "not work" appeals to me strongly). Now, that raises the more interesting question of- "Why am I the Least Motivated Person in America?" It's a question I've been thinking a lot about recently (see #6 on the list of activities), and so far my only solution is to have an illegitimate child to give myself some perspective. At some point in my life someone asked me the high school guidance counselor question of "What would you do if you were independently wealthy?" In high school my answer would have been to play professional golf, in college my answer would have been to play videogames, and now I'm pretty sure the thing that I'd do if wealthy is lie on a psychologist's couch all day and figure out why I'm so fucked up. In related news, my company just voluntarily agreed to pay 100% of all health care costs (including copays) for its employees, which is bringing me closer to making this dream a reality.

I only wish I had more time, because this post needs a good rewrite...