Posts Tagged ‘work’

taobmaetS ooGcM rightly guessed that not all has been well recently.

I’ve been working like a horse to make a project work for months and finally two scientists I work with flew out to make it work – plus a third scientist who we are collaborating with.  I felt some relief that surely with their help we would lick this problem, but at the same time it was with a different small amount of relief that after three days three absolutely brilliant scientists found nothing flawed with my work.  But, that also means that we still didn’t make it work.

I told one of them that I thought that what we have been thinking our diagnostics have been telling us about our laser is incorrect and that meant that no matter what we did we would not get the wee beastie working.  She agreed.  I said I needed to go home because I physically couldn’t do any more.

That (Friday) evening, just two hours later, I got a phone call from one of the other scientists telling me that I could opt to say no, but “Would you go down to Texas to build the instrument that you designed at a different facility?”

What the hell are you supposed to do, say no?

Without missing a beat I said “Yup, I will go.”  When I got surprise on the other end I said “Look, I’ve been killing myself over this and I damn well want to see it work.  I’m not giving up.  If it doesn’t work it won’t be because I didn’t give it everything I’ve got.”

So this week I fly down to Texas to try another group’s laser and equipment – let’s hope it works.

Yes, that has been A problem but not THE problem.  I’ve been over-exerting myself physically and for long enough that my neck has been telling me things were seriously wrong.  Friday last, it really told me.  I was in a vicious pain cycle to the point where I nearly had a co-worker take me to the hospital but managed to get it under control with painkillers before that became necessary.

Saturday was the real problem.  I woke up in the morning pretty bad off and took pretty much everything I could, but after an hour I was even worse.  I asked Cruel Wife to call the pain doc and have him call the ER ahead of us so they knew to not let me sit in agony in the waiting room for three hours like last time (that was a few years back).  Problems with going to the ER are (1) acute embarrassment even though you just want them to make it stop, and (2) there is nothing you can say that will convince them that you truly aren’t a drug-seeker, unless you have a decent doc like I have finally found who managed to pin down three discs that other docs missed.

I was lying there, pretty much writhing on the bed, when Cruel Wife came in and said “here, take these… the doc called in another Rx”.  Time ceases to have any meaning when you feel like that so it had felt like both years and moments since I’d asked her to call the doc.   I took them and within 15-20 minutes I was wrung-out but the pain was receding rapidly, and I was drowsy enough to fall asleep.  I stayed drugged up all weekend, knowing that I had to pack up and fly to Texas for three days and hoping that the rest and meds would allow my body to heal a bit.

I still feel kind of cruddy but better than I have been.

My apologies for not posting – it will be spotty this week, too, but I will be taking all of next week off.


Well, damn.  Can’t say as how I blame him.  Makes you wish you could take the load off his shoulders though.  Through no fault of his own…


People assume weather science can predict anything?  Well, isn’t that true if climate scientists can project global warming and climate change out to 100 years from now?

“People see that and assume we can predict everything,” National Hurricane Center senior forecaster Richard Pasch said.

But when Irene struck, the storm did not stick with the forecast’s predicted major hurricane strength winds.

“It’s frustrating when people take our forecasts verbatim and say, ‘This is where it’s going to be at this time and this is how strong it’s going to be,'” Pasch said. “Because even though the track is good it’s not certain.”

In other news, global warming is causing a rise in mental illness.  Hmmm.   I thought the latter led to the former.

RATES of mental illnesses including depression and post-traumatic stress will increase as a result of climate change, a report to be released today says.

The paper, prepared for the Climate Institute, says loss of social cohesion in the wake of severe weather events related to climate change could be linked to increased rates of anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress and substance abuse.

As many as one in five people reported ”emotional injury, stress and despair” in the wake of these events.

Damn, that is choice.


In my school days, getting good or perfect attendance was expected and if you were skipping a lot of days it mean an ass-kicking at home.  Now, apparently, you get an iPod for doing what you should have been doing anyway.


And here I thought Spice was a geriatric drug that gave you blue eyes and allowed you to fold space.  Well, it must do something if so many folks in the military (and elsewhere) are testing positive for it.  People don’t generally test positive for massive ingestion of talcum powder or carnuba wax because they don’t get you high.


Okay.  That’s all I’ve got for now.

Read Full Post »

A Mild Curse?

I have begun to wonder if I am cursed.

Been working on a project that involves fiber optics and some interesting ways of exploiting them.  But optics can sometimes have their own agenda… You’d think “Hey, what can really go wrong?  This is physics, right?”

You can break fibers, crack them, crush optics, have laser failures, torch failures, low transmission issues, bad mechanical splices, bad polishes on connectors, adhesive failures, bad fiber optics batches… and this can go on and on… to the point that you wonder why the part that is relatively simple is being so gosh-darned hard.  All of this, in one day.  We haven’t even gotten to the hard part yet – the part that is technically and scientifically challenging (and fun).

I strongly suspect that in my lab the laws of physics have been beaten with rubber hoses and had fingers broken with pliers.  Then life came along and stole it’s candy and stomped on it’s glasses.  And life chuckled with bone-chilling soulless mirth.

Thank goodness that ThinkGeek is there to help me feel motivated to get out of bed on months like these last few.

The flying alarm clock:

The Flying Alarm Clock wakes you up with a loud shrieking alarm coupled with a little propeller-driven key that leaps off your nightstand. To turn off the horrible racket, you have to get out of bed and retrieve the key. The propeller flies the key high into the air and off into some dusty corner. You have to force your sleep addled brain into wakefulness, move your stiff legs and retrieve the key before the alarm goes off. By the time you’ve done so, you’re awake enough at least to go make a pot of coffee.


Good gravy, I need a Corndog Factory so bad that I feel like my innards have been sucked out through my kneecaps.  Oh, the humanity.


I probably also need some Bear Paw Forks, too.


Read Full Post »

They predicted snow, so I thought I’d be proactive and left earlier than the rush-hour commute.

Took 1-1/2 hours to drive home.

Took 5 minutes to answer a call from The Dude asking if I had inadvertently picked up his keys.

Took 30 seconds to stare at the unfamiliar ring of keys that were in my left pocket.

Took 2 seconds to say “Oh… shit.”

Took 2 hours to drive back to work.

Along the way, the check engine light came on and oil pressure dropped to 20psi.

Took 1-1/2 hours to drive home again.

I should have just stayed at work.  I drove in show † snow for five hours today.

My editor caught a boo-boo speling errer.  Whupski.

Read Full Post »

… because it’ll save me from having to come up with something. Hell, I’ll add something right now. OCD is a real bitch at times.

Again, I the lowly minion, trudge to do the bidding of my fearsome master. So I shall have to find something quirky to pop in this space tomorrow… for now, ask not for whom the smoky tallow burns, it burns for thee.

In normal people terms, that means it’ll be a late night.


Bumper Sticker on Co-Worker’s Vehicle:

Bumper Stickers Are Not The Answer

Screw it. I’m posting anyway. The boss can just get his stuff a little later tomorrow. It’s 2:30 now and I’m tired, dammit…

Ok this is funny and not funny… in space no one can hear you scream… as the toilet backs up.

Luckily the space shuttle has “facilities” and they are on their way, but you can’t cross your legs THAT long. And the arrival of the shuttle is not going to help when everybody is trying to pee into bottles left and right. You can’t just open a window and let ‘er rip.


the next day

Ok, I saw this weeks ago and laughed till I cried – it’s old news but I’m posting it now (get over it). South Park did homage to Heavy Metal (complete with music). However funny, it mocks a very real problem with our teens – a dark and sinister side to ‘having fun’… the tendency to do ANYTHING to get high, including “Cheesing“, which is the topic of the episode. Check out your listings and watch “Major Boobage”.

Cheesing is a very dangerous quick high where the user will get high by allowing a cat to spray in their face. It’s fast, cheap, easy, dangerous, it’s addictive, it’s destructive, so Don’t Do It. So far, all users seem to be teleported to a mystical land and they see… whoa. Shown here is Kenny while on a binge of Cheesing. Terrible, isn’t it?

(For the record, Cruel Wife laughed, too.)


Is this really the best that news has to offer? Is this what the average American considers top-of-the-fold? No wonder HillObama is so popular (see Yesterday’s Post)

Battery-Powered Robot Climbs Rope for 7 Hours in Grand Canyon, Sets Guinness World Record

So, the reader is supposed to get all hot and bothered that a piece of plastic went up a rope for 7 hours? Crap, if they made the thing out of a balanced pair of lightweight wheels clamping the rope they could have done the same thing and gone longer.

I’m convinced that our president in 2012 will be the Thelma and Louise Ticket of Hillary and Rosie given the state of people’s demand for “news” in a news site. I’m different because I’m blogging. I can put any old shit out there that turns my fancy. And do.


Army to Remove Memorial Sign and Crosses From Chapel in Kosovo Camp

This is not a new regulation and exists to protect the free exercise of religion of all soldiers

Would someone tell me how putting up a memorial or remembering a fallen chaplain is going to damage the free exercise of even one person?

Read Full Post »