Thursday, June 14, 2007

1307 Thursday Before a Weekend

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Lots of stuff to do yet today. Pay bills, get money, wash hair, pack suitcase, get maps & directions, clean out minivan, clean litter box, send Father's Day card, send a birthday card, ....

Whoa. Maybe I should get started.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

1306 Proxy / Pictures

Anybody know how to make show pictures? Anonymous browsing via Proxylord is pretty boring.

1305 Gay Bomb?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


1304 Finished May Museum

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Went in to the museum today, and finished sending the membership cards. Alone. The last 36 were the complicated ones with all the fancy premiums, but it took me only 2 hours. Of course, I screwed up four of the envelopes, and had to reopen them and close them with tape. Big deal. I'm a volunteer, darn it! I'm allowed to screw up!

The volunteer coordinator says it's looking good for getting rid of the premiums. Of course, the renewal reminders I sent out last week still mention them, so there will be one more month of complicated mailings, and then it should get easier.


I'm doing laundry. Need stuff for the weekend.

Which reminds me -

Four people in the past few weeks have told me they like the way I dress.

They: "I like the way you dress."
Me: "??? (raise eyebrows, tilt head)"
They: "Classy, with a hint of naughty."
They didn't all use the exact same words, those are the words of the male commenter, but that's pretty much what it came down to in each case.

I think I've finally found my style.

When I started to get the wattles under my chin, I started wearing more high collars, turtlenecks and so on. Then I read somewhere that the older neck actually looks better with MORE rather than less exposed. The older woman should wear wide low necklines that show the collarbones and the sides of the neck that slope toward the shoulders, and more of the upper chest (but not a lot of cleavage). It draws attention away from the neck, makes it look longer and tighter.

It works!

Below the hips, I like drapey long stuff, that swings or flutters when I move. Otherwise the lower neckline makes me look wider and shorter. Above the hips, clingy drapey tops with 3/4 sleeves (or at least to the elbow), and top-of-the-hip length collarless jackets.

This is maybe the first time in my life that I like most of my clothes. And all of it's comfortable.

1303 Quit Bugging Me!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The next time you find yourself on a plane, sitting next to someone who cannot resist chattering to you endlessly, quietly pull your laptop out of your bag, carefully open the screen (ensuring the irritating person next to you can see it), and hit this link.

(Can anyone tell me what the writing says, if anything?)

1302 Who Says the ACLU Does't Have a Sense of Humor?

See this:


A little scary.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

1301 What Managers Like to Hear

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Talking with a friend today, about managers in general. I mentioned that with one exception (and he didn't last long), I got along well with my managers. Managers and I "had an understanding".

At some point early in our relationship, in the initial interview, a new manager would ask me what I saw as my job, how would I define my responsibilities (yeah, they all asked. They all went to the same management training course.)

Other people said stuff like designing this, coding that, whatever. My answer was always, "My primary responsibility is to keep you out of trouble." And that really IS what I saw as my job, and what I mainly did.

They would also ask what I expected from them, what I saw as their job.

Other people said stuff like assign projects, help me further my career, and so on. My answer was always, "Trust me, run interference for me, and otherwise keep out of my way."

A third standard question was what are my career aspirations, where did I want to be in ten years.

Other people said stuff like that they wanted the manager's job, or they wanted to make senior, and so on. My answer was "I think that setting a specific goal, and doing things to achieve that goal, is limiting myself. I prefer to learn all I can about everything around me, and then take utmost advantage of opportunities as they appear. Or as I create them. I do intend to stay technical. No management aspirations, so that makes it easier. But I don't see that as limiting."

Mgr: "But you have to have some way to measure yourself."
Me: "Well, I sort of do. When I say something in a meeting, I want everyone to shut up, listen carefully, and think about what I said."
Mgr: "Technical respect. You have that now."
Me: "That's how I know it's time to expand into something I don't know anything about. Got any opportunities?"

Most of my managers grew to depend on me. The more imagination they had, the better the working relationship. I didn't start getting strange reactions until the last few years, when I ran into Corporate honchos.

No imagination there. They were stiff, rule-bound, and running scared. That's when retirement started looking good.

I guess my goal all along was to retire young and comfortably.

P.S. I retired, comfortably, at 49.

1300 Museum With Helper

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

They brought in a helper for me today. We had 60-some envelopes to stuff with membership cards, various letters, and premium gifts.

The coordinator said, "He's challenged, but he learns quickly." He's sweet, but it think it might have taken longer with him helping. I had him folding letters and putting them in the envelopes, and he was soooooooo precise! I was putting other stuff in the envelopes as he finished them, and stamping and sealing them. When we got down to the last four envelopes for today, I handed him the stamps and told him to put the stamps on those envelopes, and seal them.

He put the stamps on, then he went to the men's room. He took the first of the four envelopes with him. Duh? I heard the water running. When he came back out, the flap of the envelope was soaked, and he was frustrated because it wouldn't stick.

I licked and sealed the other three real quick, while he was waving that one in the air trying to dry it.

We got only 24 done.

One of them is covered in tape.

More to do tomorrow.

1299 Surfing by Proxy

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

One of my favorite blogs to visit is "Sweet Rose Ramblings (AKA The Call-Waiting Blog)". Shoshana has an eclectic mind and a talent for locating interesting items around the internet. Go see what she's found recently about invisibility, and molecular photography become art, and psychology, who knows what next.

She does my surfing for me!

Monday, June 11, 2007

1298 The Ebay Song

Monday, June 11, 2007

This is dedicated to all of us who at one time or another have been addicted to eBay.

(If you're viewing this on a feeder, and don't see a video whatsis here, click on the post title.)

1297 Masses of Moca

Monday, June 11, 2007

So, Roman and I went to Mass MOCA yesterday. He came here and then we took my minivan, because the a/c in his car is on the fritz. Turned out we didn't need a/c anyway - the day was cloudy and cool. Mapquest said it should take us a little over two hours to get there. It was actually more like three.

The "CA" stands for "Contemporary Art". Turns out that's pretty much the same as modern art, which we have already determined I don't fully appreciate.

One room absolutely cracked me up. It contained several large framed sheets of plain white paper. Plain, as in pristine. Little labels described the "art". One sheet had been exposed to full sunlight for several hours. One sheet had had a few snowflakes land on and melt on it. One sheet was titled a self-portrait - the artist had positioned his face 14" from the paper and stared at it motionlessly for a while. And so on.

OMG! I cracked up. Literally. The cognoscenti were frowning at me because I was laughing so hard. You've got to admire the salesmanship, anyway.

I ended up admiring the buildings instead (an old textile factory complex). Beautiful craftsmanship and artistry in the exterior brickwork, unexpectedly powerful yet delicate interior trusses.

I could have passed on the factory theme in the restrooms, though.

This is the place that has the trees growing upside down in the courtyard. They don't look at all like the photo any more. Two of the six trees are dead, one is dying, and the rest are almost leafless, struggling, trying to cope. Their "tops" and branches are curving up, twisting, trying to grow up. They look terribly unbalanced, desperately unhappy.

MOCA should do something about them.

We closed the place down, drove back to the Hudson valley, and had a very good dinner at a restaurant near Bard College.

A few weeks ago, we had attended a seminar on Asperger's Syndrome, at which the speaker had recommended the movie "Napoleon Dynamite", for examples of an Aspie's reactions. Roman mentioned that he had borrowed the movie from the library and had meant to bring it to me.

So we went to his house and watched it.