the employment hiatus finally ends

Last week, I paused my job hunt. At the end of the previous week, I had a follow-up interview that sounded very promising so I decided to wait it out to see if they would call me back with an offer the following week.

Day after day, I found myself sleeping ’til 11 to wake up and enjoy my last days as a free agent. I enjoyed some Jeopardy! HD, Wheel of Fortune, and weekly evening programming (Heroes, Bones, Hell’s Kitchen) but awaited the call in the back of mind all the time.

I made it most of the way through Half-Life 2 which is one of the best games I’ve played in the past ten years. That isn’t saying much since I don’t play too many games. I also won a couple PS3 games on eBay to occupy my free time: Sonic Unleashed and LittleBigPlanet. Sonic has arrived, but I’m still waiting on LBP.

I finally got a library card to reap another benefit of being a citizen in this wonderful city. I meant to get one last year, but I was eaten alive by the day job machine. To be able to borrow books, CDs, and DVDs at no monetary cost is a bonus. I see my ISO collection growing faster with this privilege.

I still desire a terabyte upgrade to my massive storage machine, Diode. I’m sure I’ll be getting the upgrade once I sit down and do my taxes and Direct Deposit does it magic to my bank account.

Each day became more gloomy when I didn’t receive the call, and it was already dinnertime. I told myself that the processing and paperwork had to be done, so I remained patient. If I didn’t hear back from the company by the following Tuesday, then I was going to send them an email inquiring the status of my application.

Friday arrived. The whole week went by with me consumed with Half-Life 2, Jeopardy!, Wheel of Fortune, feeding the fish twice a day, tapping at the keyboard, and keeping up with the rest of my TV shows but absolutely no job seeking. Around 4PM, my phone rang. I told myself, “Please please please let it be them.” It was. HR was calling me to see if I was still interested in the position I applied for. Of course I was.

I zipped over to their office to fill out my share of the paperwork to finalize my hiring, and I would start Monday. Tonight is the last night of my much-needed vacation/hiatus from the working world. I’m ready to return. I am proud to say that although my funds depleted a bit during that time, I did not find myself in a crazy debt or behind on bills due to being unemployed.

The saying goes that the best time to find a job is when you have a job. I said screw that, because I was unhappy with the place I was working for and the unneeded stress it gave me. I say the best time to find a job is when you have at least a few months saved up to take care of all of your expenses and you’re ready to turn in your two weeks notice.

Even with the media phrasing their words to put scare tactics about the state of the economy with news about almost five million people filing for unemployment checks, companies downsizing or folding causing layoffs, Austin’s unemployment rate at 5% (That’s 1 out of 20 people in this city!), and the economic stimulus going into effect now. The list of fear goes on and on, but I had the gut feeling that I wouldn’t have to worry too much with my skill set and drive to succeed.

I feel that most of you had faith in me while I was unemployed that I would find another job. I felt the same. I admit that I did have a little worry in me, but that was mostly a result of watching too much evening news. To hear what how this country is doing economically will sadden anyone, but it’s the harsh truth.

During my job search, I had an offer I declined and received a decent amount of rejection while I looked for a job, but I eventually landed one that I’d like to stick with. The unfortunate circumstance is that the job is labeled temporary, but we’ll have to see how that works out. My last day job started as a contract job, and I found myself sticking around past that for a total of two and a half years.

The hours I’ll be working at this new job are going to be a little weird, but I’m sure that I’ll adjust relatively quick. My bedtime is here, and I’ll have to get up during the wee hours to make it to the office by 5AM. The glorious part is that I’ll be done with my work day at 1PM, so I’ll still be able to do the things I did during my hiatus like watch Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune, play some PS3 while the sun is out, and make it to stores while they’re still open.

I figured that I’d take a nap around 2PM for a couple hours after work to make it into the evening and be able to stay up ’til 10 or 11 to catch the rest of my sleep and be able to wake up refreshed for the next day of work. I love and need my sleep, but I’m back in the game. I can do this. I’m employed again! I’ll keep you updated as usual. Peace out. 🙂

the exit strategy

Today marks the third week since my last day at the chaotic office I worked in for the past two and a half years. The job hunt still continues, but I’m not too worried yet. I have a decent amount saved up that will float me for at least the next couple months if needed.

I’ve been enjoying this vacation. Apart from the spontaneous Texas winter weather, it has been very relaxing. I’ve been doing next to nothing, but I kind of like it. I can’t say I’ve been bored. I can always find something to occupy my time, and the days have been flying by so quickly. I meant to write something up like this last Tuesday, but the time just got spent too fast. I enjoy being able to stay up during the wee hours of the night and wake up around noon again.

My PS3 and I have been bonding. I’ve downloaded a bunch of media, themes, and demos through the Playstation Network. I’ve been playing a decent amount of Half-Life 2 and discovered an enjoyable game that uses the Sixaxis technology called Super Rub a Dub. You basically control a tub with a rubber duck in it that has to gather the baby rubber ducks and bring them to the drain. It gets more fun and interesting as the levels get more difficult with obstacle-shaped tubs and wind-up sharks.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6qXaNkeKyw

I’ve reduced my comic purchasing, since my steady income is on pause. Another reason is that I’ve let go of a bunch of titles for the lack of interest or the mini-series have completed. I do still get my share of comic reading done. Next month, the Watchmen movie comes out and I’m looking forward to it. If you haven’t read the graphic novel yet, then I suggest you do.

I’ve immersed myself in DTV and have become somewhat of a couch potato. I try to catch the back-to-back episodes of Jeopardy! HD at 4PM CST on NBC. I usually watch Wheel of Fortune at 6:30PM. Heroes is back on Monday nights. NBC Comedy on Thursdays is one of my favorite sitcom chains on network television right now, but FOX has Thursdays right now with Bones and Hell’s Kitchen.

Fortunately, Mininova is an excellent network that usually has access to HD downloads to network television shows. I could just stream them on the network sites, but I’m a cheapskate with the slowest broadband connection on the block plus my entire folding farm currently resides here and units are completed often enough to suck up all the bandwidth when I need it most. I also like to collect them and watch them over again.

I’ve done a decent amount of job hunting, but with the economic recession scare and lack of job availability, I haven’t found anything yet. I’m going to keep looking at the pace I’m going now, and I’ll continue to pick and choose what who receives my résumé and applications. I’m sure I’ll find something. Like I said earlier, I’m not too worried yet. That’s the advantage of being financially responsible when I knew I was going to make a move to start a new chapter in my life. I didn’t want to continue being a manager at a horribly disorganized company where I’m putting out fire after fire. The pay was decent, but the stress was not worth it.

My rambling ends here for tonight. The post explosion will continue tomorrow from my fingertips to the keyboard. I will be wearing my pajamas again. Peace out.

the texas snow

Only in Texas will the weather be a comfortable ~70°F during the day, large gusts of wind come through in the late afternoon, and snow falls from the sky a half hour ’til midnight.

Mare took a picture of her Vespa as the snow started falling.

The bandwidth in the apartment is currently being eaten up with a 50MB upload to Stanford of a completed [email protected] work unit by c0rey and another one completed by Diode. The PS3 should be completing another one around 1:30AM.

To post this without having to put up with the lag from the large data transfers going on right now, I am mooching off a neighbor who is unaware of the importance of securing a wireless network.

To successfully rip The Dark Knight on DVD, make sure you’re using DVDFab Platinum 5.1.2.2. They thought they could stop us.

the boy you hit pay dirt

I haven’t been writing much about my life in here lately, because it’s been pretty monotonous and unexciting for the most part.

K$, Mare and I watched The Onion Movie followed by The Love Guru tonight. Both comedies had a couple similar elements. The ones I noticed were the penis jokes galore and elephants.

I wrote this post back in May for a writing contest and recently got the news that I won. The prize is my choice of either a Wii, PS3 or 360. [email protected] Fanboy #1 is definitely going with the PS3. I also like the fact that the PS3 has a Blu-ray player and I think Life with Playstation is kind of neat:

I’m not much of a gamer, so the PS3 seems to have the bells and whistles that attract me more than the other two consoles.

This was coincidental with a comment I made yesterday to Mare about how I’ve been able to obtain things without exchanging money. My Altec Lansing 5.1 computer speaker system was given to me in exchange for designing a business card. The bed I sleep on was won by making a short video that advertised the mattress. Those are just a couple pricier items I own that I did not spend a dime on. I can look forward to adding a Playstation 3 to that family of belongings.

I am happy that I will own a Cell processor that will compute for the cause. The last gaming system I owned was the Nintendo 64 with my family.

DQ Blizzard by MC Chris has been stuck in my head for a while now: