Schlemiel! Schlemazl! Hasenpfeffer Incorporated!

I’ve been keeping it on the DL, just so as to avoid a lot of questions, or to jinx it, but now things are set in stone.

I took a job in the financial aid office at UW-Milwaukee. This will be more or less a lateral move for me professionally, but with a slight increase in pay and it puts me down in the city where I spend a vast majority of my free time (for obvious reasons).

It’s nice to stay in the UW System, because my benefits and retirement will basically follow me. Also good timing because the lease at my apartment is up as of June 30, and that’s pretty much exactly 60 days from now anyway.

So, I’ve gotta get back to work and start thinking about all the crap I need to finish up around here in the next 10 working days. Gimme a call or an email if you want. I’m excited.

I leave you with an “oldie but goodie” photoshop:

3 Stars

I was looking through my Netflix queue yesterday, filling in “rating” holes for movies that I watched but never made a call on (I know– really stressful, exciting stuff). But I noticed that a large number of these movies got 3 out of 5 stars from me. In the Netflix vernacular, this means “I liked it,” as opposed to 2 stars (“I didn’t like it”) or 4 stars (“I really liked it”).

I dunno, this is surely a case where my anal retentiveness and desire to over-quantify something as unimportant as a list of movies, is tripping me up, but I really wish there were half-star marks you could make on this thing. There are movies that I gave a 3 just because I couldn’t say “I didn’t like it,” and others that got a 3 just because I didn’t “really” like it. I mean those are 5’s and 7’s out of 10, respectively. There’s a net difference of a full star there, but the system doesn’t let me account for it.

Well, really, though, who gives a shit? On the Netflix scale, I would give this post 1 star (“I hated it”).

In the Nick of Time?

I thought it was an interesting coincidence that I was sent the following two articles, in this order, earlier this morning:
From Josh Schneider: Minneapolis Star-Tribune– disappearing bees means disappearing food supply, and human extinction
From Michelle: Astronomers discover the most Earth-like planet yet, a mere 120 trillion miles away

My brief commentary on each, respectively:
The bees— this shit should scare the crap out of you. Bees = pollination = plant growth = people & animals eating = successful ecosystem. You take out the first step in that process, and you’re basically boned. Big, big, big trouble.

The planet— very interesting discovery. Although it is, of course, impossible to ever visit this place (or the myriad other extra-solar planets being discovered), the fact that so many have been found in so brief a period of time is really exciting to me. It was only 10 or 15 years ago that I was reading articles in which prominent astronomers held a very “solar-centric” opinion: that our planetary system itself was unique and science would be hard-pressed to even FIND A PLANET ELSEWHERE, let alone one that might support life. It really lends a ton of value to projects like the California and Carnegie Extrasolar Planet Search, as well as SETI.

Distracted

I’ve got a bunch of things on my mind this week, and it’s complicating my work and my blog. There’s also the fact that I’m out of coffee at work, and keep forgetting to bring in more. I get caffeine headaches now, which I never used to, and it’s quite a bummer when I’m off the stuff. But I digress.

So late last week, I ran the following numbers:
DATE I ENTERED UW-OSHKOSH AS A FRESHMAN: 9/3/1997
DATE I LEFT UW-OSHKOSH w/ A BACHELOR’s DEGREE: 12/15/2001
TOTAL ELAPSED TIME: 4 YRS, 3 MONTHS, 12 DAYS

DATE I ENTERED MSU-BOZEMAN AS A GRAD STUDENT: 8/26/2002
DATE I TRANSFERRED TO UW-OSHKOSH AS A GRAD STUDENT: 2/2/2004
TOTAL ELAPSED TIME SINCE GRAD STUDIES STARTED (degree incomplete): 4 YRS, (and very nearly) 8 MONTHS

One of my master’s program colleagues was in the office the other day to talk to my boss. He started after me, and he’s defending his thesis this month. That really sort of put some stuff in perspective for me and made me realize I need to quit dragging my feet.

So my plan for this week is to get done with the paperwork that needs to go through in order to start on my thesis. Rindo seems to think I could still get out even as early as the fall. Personally, I don’t know how that would happen, but spring suits me fine, too.

I’ve gotta get back in a writing mode and scrape some rust off my brain so that what I do in the fall is actually worth something. I’ve been so goddamn tired or making excuses for why I can’t work. I really need to kick myself in the ass.

There are some professional distractions hovering around my mind this week, too, and hopefully I’ll have more to say about that by next Monday. Things are coming to a head, I think you could say.

I also totally flaked on the Netflix subscription coming out of my bank account this week, so I’m goddamn overdrawn, and what that basically means is that the sandwich I had for lunch last week is gonna cost me 40 dollars. Stupid, stupid bullshit.

I gotta try to concentrate. If I manage to formulate a coherent thought, you mind get wind of it.

Constant Updates

I’m really tired and I should have been in bed an hour or so ago. I had to finish a movie first.

I haven’t had much that was very blogg-o-riffic the last couple weeks. Work has been really busy. I haven’t done much in the evenings, and I probably oughta change that.

Here is a quick list from the weekend:
– I saw the Brewers loss on Friday with Dave, but they did have a winning weekend
– I had to go to work for a while on Saturday. It was OK.
– I went to Kilian’s 3rd birthday party, but since my ‘work’ had run late, I rushed over there without my card or my camera. A couple pics from my phone are on the Flickrs.
– I slept way too late this morning after not being able to sleep last night
– I have converted the last Windows holdover that I had in my house (the laptop)– I am now a linux-only sorta guy (which was a long time coming), and only interesting to the geekiest among you, I’m sure
– I started reading John Hodgman’s book, The Areas of My Expertise. It is funny.

OK. Bed time.