Things not to do at a Christmas party

We just got back from what must have been the most boring Christmas party I have ever attended at this local restaurant. This was Devina’s second Christmas party in as many weeks and the first one at this restaurant was very cool and we definitely had a blast. I think we all spent about 3 and a half hours there before we realized what time it was and had to leave to get ready for work the next day.

Tonight, after the first hour we were both dying to leave. I think it was because there was an overabundance of older stuffy white people there. Actually, Devina and I were the only non whities there now that I think about it… When her boss came by and chatted with us however, it got pretty cool because her boss totally rocks. Unfortunately, there must have been some dairy in one of my dishes (or that atrocious salmon I had was undercooked) so I had to retreat back home hastily and ride out the stomach pains while watching Judge Mathis.

Here’s a bit of advice for anyone attending any Christmas parties this or any year in the future though…

Bringing up the death of your significant other in the middle of what is supposed to be a somewhat festive occasion is not cool. Continually bringing up the said death to make your story sound better than someone else’s makes you look REAL desperate for attention.

You’d figure people have some common sense in social matters eh?

Turn your head and cough please

Roughly a week before I started my new job, I was required to take a physical and drug test. A few days later I headed out to the local hospital for my physical and drug test. Just for good measure, I drank two glasses of water to ensure the fact that I wouldn’t draw a blank for the drug test (ummm, the pee pee test in case you didn’t know). The last time I had to provide a liquid sample for an old job, I couldn’t do it so I figured I’d double up on the dosage and man did it work. 😉

Anyway, I got there and immediately did the drug test (“Whoa what a feeling”). Then they took my weight, blood pressure and performed a hearing, eye and TB test. Not exactly sure as to why I would need to take a TB test, but I went along with it anyway. I actually had to take the blood pressure test a few times because it was really cold in the examination room and they thought it was the cause of my low pressure reading. After the third time, they just took an average and left it at that. I was then left alone in that tiny room for a good 30 minutes. Luckily, they left a bunch of syringes and stuff out so I had a chance to play with items in there before the doc showed up. Oddly enough, if you fill up a syringe with hydrogen peroxide and depress the plunger as hard as you can, it won’t reach the ceiling.


So the doctor walked in and I was stunned, froze up and got nervous as hell. Normally I am fine and dandy and strike up long conversations with the doctors that give me my physicals. I was never one to have those silly fears of hospitals or doctors, however the only problem was that this was the very first time that I was ever greeted by a female doctor.

I was freaking..

I mean, she’s going to have to do the “cough” test for christ’s sake?!?

For those of you who do not know, males typically have to drop their trousers during physical exams. During this time, the doctor places his usually freaggin’ cold hands underneath the male’s berries and instructs them to cough. Now, if you’re a normal male, the boys retreat back in and drop back out while you are coughing. Supposedly it’s some form of reflex, kind of like hitting that spot on your knee that makes it kick up. If it doesn’t happen, it’s generally something pretty bad and you go to see a urologist to fix ya up. Now, this test usually lasts no more than 2.2 seconds because no body ever wants to grab a guy’s nuts for longer than that if they do not have to, even if it is for medical reasons.

Anyhoo, all of these pictures of her performing this procedure were flooding into my mind while she was reading over my vital stats. What if she’s doing it and by some weird unfortunate stroke of misfortune I start to get aroused?! Or worse yet, it was really damn cold in there, didja ever see that Seinfeld episode?? What if she snickered or something… I mean she could be married Sean Michaels or Lexington Steele for all I know and here she is scoping my privates and making that comparison. Then later that night laughing about it with Mr. Two and a half feet of dangling fury…


I think she could sense that she started joking around with me and lightening the mood a bit. Then she got into “professional” mode and asked me a billion questions about my health and explaining why all of those tests were necessary. Then she had me sit on the long chair/couch thingy with the paper and started to listen to my heart and lungs work. I really started to ease up and asked her a whole bunch of questions with regards to my body. Like the difference between pneumonia and bronchitis (which I am susceptible to in the winter) and why she kept on tapping my back and chest while listening through her stethoscope. Then I had to lie down as she started checking for weird lumps in my abdominal area. I asked her if it was possible to feel my liver and she showed me exactly where mine was and I felt it. It blew my mind! Then she took me on a map of my body and where organs were as if I was eating something and on it’s way to the porcelain heaven. I was totally digging this doctor’s visit. Never have I had a doctor be so thorough and explain every single thing they were doing like she did. She brought up really interesting facts about certain organs like my lungs and we must have talked about my health for a good hour or so.

Then, it was time for me to go and the “cough” test was never done. However, after spending that much time learning from that doctor, I very highly doubt that I will ever be bothered again if she needed to check me there in the future. I have never met a more professional and down to earth doctor before and I made sure that when I selected my doctor for my new health plan (unfortunately, it’s an HMO grrrrr) that it was her.

As a matter of fact, if all female doctors are like this, I may just never go back to a male doctor again. Well, maybe a male urologist though… Just hope I don’t have to see one of them for a long time to come.

New beginnings

It’s been a while since I have posted anything of meaning. Reason being is that I wound up finding a new job relatively quickly after being laid off. Granted it’s a great deal less work than what I am used to doing at Silhouette, it’s still taking me a while to get used to the swing of things. Especially waking up in the morning to get to work on time. Luckily, I know a lot of back roads to get there on time even if I leave a little later than normal.

It’s a non-profit organization and that’s pretty much anyone other than close friends will know about my new job. I am once again a network administrator and oddly enough, the location has the most advanced network I have seen in my career thus far. Right now, I’m helping them move into a Windows 2003 environment and getting them into a more corporate-type of networked environment. Once I’m done “cleaning house,” I’ll help them network several dozen locations together all throughout the state. It’s a fairly hefty undertaking when I look at the bigger picture, but I’m pretty psyched about it.

As for the job itself, it’s very laid back and nothing like the corporate environments I am used to. It’s actually very similar to the academic environment I was used to at the Rutgers computer labs without all of the sexual tension, nipple twisting and drinking ;). My work days are a little shorter and very few people ever stay past closing time. It’s about 70 miles closer than my last commute and I get to finally dress up in a suit! Yeah, I’m the type of person who likes wearing suits to work, it’s a weird thing. I did have to take a pay cut, but taking the infinitely shorter commute into consideration, I’m not missing that much out of my check come payday.

The part that really sucks is that we’re not allowed to browse the net or IM during the day. I really didn’t know how much time I wasted at my last job just chatting with friends and browsing the web until now. Luckily, I figured out that the proxy software doesn’t detect SSH connections to my linux box, so everything is not lost. I’m still able to IM and browse the web via Lynx. That last post I made was a test to see if I could blog from work as well. I’m not sure I’ll actually do it, but it’s good to know I can post a few entries every now and then if I need to.

Now, if only I could find a command line RSS reader.

Anyone have some recommendations?

So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye

This is the second layoff I am about to go through this far in my life. To be honest, I wasn’t that sad about it because I’ve been through it already. I know what to do and the world doesn’t seem so frightening after having been through it once.

It still sucks giant moose balls though, don’t get me wrong…

However, I’m not going to be as bummed out on my last day (this Friday) as I was yesterday. The reason why is because I had to take apart the entire server room. I boxed up the rack equipment that’s headed up to the new network in Albany and got together the stuff that’s supposed to be sent back to the leasing companies. Some other stuff is going to be sent away to be “recycled” or destroyed because there’s no use for them in the new building and not worth the hassle of selling it on eBay. 😉

I was bummed (and still am) because this was my first job where I had pretty much total control of everything in that server room. I came in, saw that it was in shambles when I was hired and brought it up to a pretty damn good network. No major problems, no hardware failures, no hacks, no viruses let loose, never lost any data… My network purred like a happy little kitty getting petted and I was quite proud of it.

Now it’s all gone.

It’s just a bare 30’x20′ cold room with only an old Pentium II 333 I slapped Redhat 9 on at one end to allow the people here internet access and e-mail for the next couple of days. That and a 3Com 8-port switch casting an eery green and amber glow on the opposite side of the room. This coming Friday, that will be gone too…