mythicalgirl: (blow me)
I had a plan for today.  Really I did.  Wrote it out in my journal and everything.  

Then I came to work.  

OH. MY. GOD.  

It started less than five minutes after I logged in and I swear I haven't stopped since.  I have been so busy I think something in my brain actually snapped about twenty minutes ago.  

Nothing on my list was accomplished.  Absolutely nothing.  

How could I be so busy all day and not have anything to show for it?*

Can has clone now?

*disclaimer:  I actually did get a metric shit ton of stuff done just not on the big projects that are demanding all my time.  

It Rained!

Jul. 14th, 2012 01:55 pm
mythicalgirl: (bipolaroid)
Well, it kind of rained for about twenty minutes but hey!  Rain!  Seeing as it has only rained at my house twice for less then ten minutes each time since May I'm calling this a win.  Today was only about two minutes of heavy downpour but another twenty or so of light rain.  Of course everything is all dried out again already but I'm still happy to get any rain I can. 

Indianapolis is now officially in extreme drought - and we are under water restrictions now.  No watering, washing cars, etc.  You can still water flowers and veggies every other day so long as you hand water.  And commercial car washes are still running.  And golf courses can water (WTF?) but the rest of us can't.  Seeing as I haven't watered anything but the flower gardens in over a month nothing is really different for me.  Now we wait to see if we go on harsher restrictions if the drought continues.  I already turn off the faucet when crushing my teeth, turn off the shower when shaving my legs, do full loads in the washer and dishwasher, etc.  Other than trying to reclaim the grey-water from the washer and shit I'm not sure how much more I can do. 

In other news therapy is going well.  I wasn't all that thrilled with the doc after the first visit as the whole thing felt more like an interview than a conversation - and she kept interrupting me - but my second visit was totally different.  More conversational.  We spent time focusing on some concrete tools like breathing exercises and progressive muscle relaxation to help control my anxiety.  Because yes, I have some mild anxiety.  Both social and generalized.  Most of which I hold in my stomach and shoulders leaving me feeling nauseous and with a headache.  Hmm - that sounds familiar, doesn't it?  So I'm doing my exercises and listening to my guided imagery thing at bedtime.  I actually think it is helping a little bit.  I've felt a little bit better and been more even keeled this last week than I have been in a while.  And I'm sleeping better, which helps immensely.

I did have a moment at work the other day when I pretty much freaked out.  Thursday was one of those days.  I may have mentioned here once or twice that I'm very busy these days.  Like for the last three weeks I've gotten a new project every five days type busy.  Well, got another one of Thursday.  One of my coworkers was sending me email all morning with shit about this project he was writing the tech design for and needed the ancillary apps to be coded the same way, blah blah blah.  I finally got up, walked over to his desk, and asked him what the hell he was talking about.  (I didn't use "Hell" though - he's one of the really religious peeps I work with and I try not to cuss around him.  Sometimes I even succeed.).  Seems one of the projects that I knew about but was told would not need ancillary work does indeed need ancillary work.  But no one told me.  And no one got me involved while they were doing the requirements.  So it is only now that a developer is working on it and his boss said the ancillaries aren't his responsibility that I'm finding out there is work to do.  Typical really.

So there I am scrambling to find all the documentation and get up to speed on yet another project when my boss comes to my desk and is all "um, can I talk to you for a minutes?".  In my head I'm thinking "dude, you just gave me my raise two days ago, you can't be firing me now" as I'm walking to his desk.  I relax as soon as I realize we are at his desk and not a conference room as that means it can't been too bad, right?  Then he proceeds to tell me that he and his boss, the VP, have decided that I need to go to this conference in August that our main vendor puts on so that I can absorb all the stuff about their new technology since, to paraphrase, its all about services and business rule management systems and workflow processing and I understand all that stuff.  Plus its part of getting me up to speed and being a real architect.  

My first reaction?  No, no, f-ing no!  Don't make me go! 
What I actually said?  Okay.
Then I went back to my desk and spent the next hour registering for the conference, calling the hotel and begging for the conference rate since early registration had already closed, and working with our admin to get my flights set up.   

I've been to these conferences and user groups before so this is not a big deal (and I'm usually kind of bored).  I am a little anxious (ha!) about how I'll deal with all the people and networking shit that is expected of me.  I'll be doing a lot of breathing exercises I think. 

So that's the latest with me.  Today I plan to do a whole lot of nothing.  Maybe read a bit, grab something to eat, and just chill out.  Tomorrow I'm going to clean the house as it needs it big time.  I may start today if I get motivated. 

And now I'm going to go plan Bejewelled obsessively for a few hours.  Later.
mythicalgirl: (bipolaroid)
...until I was assigned to this new project.  Now I know what busy is - and this is only the SECOND FREAKING DAY!

The new project is far more exciting to me than the old project but it is also just as (if not more) huge.  I mean HUGE!  Like touching nearly every program and system we have HUGE!  Want to know the best part?

I'm the systems architect.

Not one of the architects, not the junior architect.  The freaking lead, flying solo, if-I-fuck-up-its-all-me architect.

I'm fine.  I flipped out a little and kind of forgot how to breathe for a few minutes yesterday when I found out but today I'm fine.  OK, maybe I'm still flipping out a little but I can do this.  

...And I just got meeting invites for yet another project.  What the fuck, people?  

I seriously need that clone I ordered.  Or minions.  I could use minions.  WAIT!  I have a minion.  Well, technically now that he's been here for over a year he's no longer in training and I'm not officially his mentor - or his boss even though our mutual boss tends to act as though he really works for me but we won't go into that now - but he did tell me he needed work!  So I can pawn some of this shit off onto him (maybe).  YAY!  

This blog post brought to you by my brain while stressed out.  Thank goodness I start therapy Monday.   


Brain Dead

Feb. 6th, 2012 05:34 pm
mythicalgirl: (nap time)
Quick wrap-up from post-Super Bowl Indy.

1.  I did NOT come downtown Friday evening.  Google "human gridlock" + "Super Bowl Village" to see why.
2.  I did watch the pre-game coverage, both the official NBC stuff and the un-official local ABC news peeps.
3.  I got bored with the pre-game coverage and switched stations to watch Resident Evil: Afterlife on cable.
4.  The zombies were done destroying the world (this time) in time for kickoff so I switched back to the game. 
5.  I watched the entire freaking thing.  First time ever!
6.  I don't care what ya'll say, I liked the halftime show.  What?  I was a teenager in the 80's!  Madonna is my homegirl, yo.
7.  I cheered like a cheering thing when the Giants won.  Not because I like the Giants but because I don't like Tom Brady. 

And in today's news - I have brained* too much and now the thinker, it is dead.  Time to hit the gym for a few then home to a hopefully early bed time. 

* brained - to think, design, problem solve, etc
mythicalgirl: (buddha)
This week has been nuts and it isn't even done yet.

The Project From Hell (TPFH) is a little less hellish than usual this week but not for good reasons.  Our Project Manager got very, very sick and is currently in the hospital.  He has pancreatitis and will be gone indefinitely.  While he is away the rest of us are continuing to move forward with all our tasks.  Its different though.  The pace hasn't really slowed any - in fact I've accomplished more in 3.5 days this week than I usually do in a full week - but things just don't seem as stressful.  And yes, I'm saying that our PM is part of what makes this TPFH.  At least for me.  I am sorry he's ill and hope he gets better soon - but I'm enjoying work more without him here. 

Yes, I'm aware that my attitude means I'm a cruel, hateful person and I'm going to hell.  I accepted that a long time ago. 

In other news you may have heard that the Super Bowl is in Indianapolis this year?  I may not have mentioned it recently but I live in Indy and work right smack in the middle of Downtown.  Boy howdy has it been nuts this week!  I've had to deal with the traffic and crowds for GenCon, Promise Keepers, various concerts and conventions, the Circle City Classic, etc.  I have never seen so many people in Indianapolis in my life.  And I'm one of the few people who hasn't gone to the Super Bowl Village!  I'm seeing these crowds and dealing with all this traffic out on the edges.  I can't imagine what it is like down on Georgia Street.

As for the Super Bowl Village and all the activities, well, I haven't made any effort to participate yet.  I might go down this afternoon as some co-workers are going to zip-line.  Kind of depends on how long they have to stand in line to do it.  I have no desire to hang out for hours just to see them fly through the air.  If I don't go today I might walk around at lunch tomorrow.  Otherwise I'll be one of the seemingly few people to miss it.  Which would be totally fine with me as I'm not one for crowds, strangers or crowds or strangers.

Due to the traffic it took me 45 minutes to get home Monday and an hour to get home Tuesday, most of the time just trying to get a mile to get out of Downtown.  Yesterday I went a different route and took the interstate.  It still took 45 minutes to get home since it takes me out of my way but at least the traffic was moving.  The only start/stop section I had was on the street waiting to hit the on-ramp.  The problem with the interstate is, like I said, it take me out of my way and I have to go through both the North and the South splits where there is an accident on a pretty much daily basis.  So just because it worked well yesterday doesn't mean I won't get stuck today or tomorrow.  It isn't a popular opinion to have - and I really am happy to have the Super Bowl here and glad things are going so well - but I will be "super" glad when it is over.

That's it.  My life is work, traffic and the Super Bowl.  Welcome to Indy!
mythicalgirl: (shut yer hole)
I've been super busy with work and I don't see that ending any time soon.  The Project From Hell continues to be both a project and hell.  Lucky me. 

As for this weekend, yes I have to work.  At least I can work from home and avoid all the yahoos downtown.  The Super Bowl is next weekend and all the fan stuff like the NFL Experience and the Super Bowl Village opened yesterday.  Downtown Indianapolis is something of a zoo these days.  And traffic sucks the big one due to all the road closures.  My morning drive has doubled from 20 minutes to 40.  My evening drive hasn't been too bad yet although that is likely due more to not getting out of work till 6:30-7:00 PM most of this past week. 

This week?  This week is probably going to suck.  Super Bowl.  Traffic.  Meetings for TPFH day in and day out.  I'm a little bit beyond my normal stress level these days.  And I'm pissed at my project manager.  I've been telling him for months that he needs to requisition resources for me, people that have a specific skill set, in order for me to finish the technical design for one portion of the system.  Friday I reiterated to him that I needed this done and asap.  He stood there, looked me in the eye, and said "I have no recollection of that conversation".  Which is pretty much bullshit but whatever.  So I said fine, just requisition them, now, because I can't do this by myself.  I don't have the experience with the tool to write a technical design.  Requirements, yes.  Technical design, no.  He said "I have faith in you".  At which point I f!cking lost it.  It isn't about having faith in me, its about getting the right resources to do the damn job and as the PM it is his responsibility to do that.  Can I do it myself?  Yes.  But it will not be done by 3/30 as I'll have to train myself on the tool first.  His respons was about what I expected - send him an email with what I need spelled out and he'll see what he can do but he expects me to be able to do it myself and on time. 

I will not type what I called him in my head after that conversation.  It is not fit for public consumption. 

So I sent the stupid email - as well as forwarding back several I'd already sent him (don't recall that conversation my ass).  And talked to both the Enterprise Architect that is the guru with the tool we are using and one of my co-workers that is a genius with the thing.  Both are completely booked, can only help answer questions on a limited basis, and let me know that everyone with enough experience to help me is booked on the two project with higher priority than The Project From Hell and are off limits.  Which means unless there's a miracle I'm on my own. 

Yeah, not one of my better weeks.  I wonder if McDonald's is hiring? 

Wish me luck next week and in the coming months.  I think I'm going to need it. 
mythicalgirl: (not doing shit)
I really am doing shit today as my workload here at, well, work, is of seriously awesome proportions.  It has gotten to the point where I am doing so much at once that pretty much everything is suffering.  I even forgot to move a couple of files to production last Friday, which resulted in me being called at 9:30 pm that night and at 8:30 this morning.  Not to mention the shit one of my co-workers gave me in a meeting earlier. 

At least I have a job.  I just keep telling myself that. 

Other than the phone call to tell me I'm a bonehead my weekend went well.  There was surfing the web, watching movies, reading and pretty much nothing else.  It snowed Saturday and was wicked cold yesterday (even colder today) so I stayed in with the fire going.  Never left the house, which for me is kind of weird because I almost always get stir crazy by Sunday afternoon and end up at the bookstore or something. 

I watched both Death At A Funeral (the Chris Rock version) and The Losers.  I definitely liked The Losers better.  I've now seen both versions of DAAF and while I think the Chris Rock version was a bit funnier I had a really hard time seeing past the actors to the characters.  Everyone in the movie is such a big actor/comedian - I wasn't seeing Aaron, I was seeing Chris Rock.  The Losers, however, was just completely mindless shoot-em-up fun.  Plus all the guys in it are seriously hot, making for some good eye candy.  Yum. 

I also finished The Girl Who Played With Fire late last week.  Damn!  I only kind of liked the first book, liked the movie version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo way better.  But I really liked this second book.  I'm anxious to see the movie version.  I also really want to read the third book but it isn't out in paperback yet.  I will be hitting my local HPB (Half Price Books) soon, probably this weekend, and I'll check if they have a copy but I'm not holding my breath.  I might be better off just getting a copy at Borders, providing I have a good coupon of course.   

Time to get back to work.  A couple more meetings, then some desk time, then the gym.  And tomorrow I do it all over again.  *sigh*
mythicalgirl: (pirate)
I know you are all anxiously awaiting the resumption of Vacation Recap Blogging!  It is coming....but not today. 

Work is still super busy and ravenously devouring my brain.  I will be working again this weekend but hopefully from home rather than in the office (unlike last Saturday where I spent 8 hours in here).  I hope to get some recaps up during breaks.  I also hope that it won't take me 8 hours to get everything done as I'd like to enjoy my weekend again at some point.

Sunday was the annual Halloween block party cookout and doggie dress-up party.  I forgot my camera but I'll see if neighbor Y- can send me some of the ones she took.  You have to see some of the dogs in their costumes!  Poor babies - they were really cute but several of the pups were not happy about being dressed up.  I was feeling extremely anti-social all day Sunday but made myself leave the house and go to the party.  I only stayed about two hours but it was good for me to be out socializing.  Plus playing with the dogs helped my stress level quite a bit. 

Today is more work, as usual, and yoga at 5:15 pm if I make it.  I currently have yet another stress headache brought on by being told I'm going to help conduct interviews for our open position.  I am socially inept and hate talking to strangers.  I can do this I just won't like it.  Unfortunately my first reaction was a slight moment of panic, which left a stress headache when it passed.  The yoga will help relieve the stress but if my head is still poundy, poundy I wont' be able to do the yoga.  Kind of a catch 22 type of thing.  We'll see how I feel later this afternoon. 

As for now I'm having soup for lunch (Vegetable Beef with Barley - Campbell's Select, not homemade) and doing some surfing before getting back to work.  The weather is turning colder, which means homemade soup/stew time!  The cookbooks will be coming out and the experimentation will begin here just as soon as my weekends aren't sucked dry by work.  I promise to post recipes and reviews!
mythicalgirl: (blow me)
Because I have too damn much to do, evidently.  Vacation recap blogging will continue, hopefully this weekend, once I get some work done.  I'm going to try to limit myself to no more than a half day today.  I have way too much to do and no end in sight.  The problem isn't only that I'm on 16 projects at one time but they are all pretty much in the same phase as well so instead of the work being staggered I have something like 10 technical designs and 6 solutions to code by the end of November.  That seems like a lot of time to get it done until you look at the estimates showing that each tech design is 60-80 hours of work (or more) and the code is estimated at something like 120 hours each.  Then it becomes clear that I'm allocated for something like 1300 hours worth of work over the next 6 weeks.  No, I don't know how I'm going to get it all done either.  The only bright spot is that our estimating sucks and I can usually get things done in about half the time they were estimated to take.  That still leaves me with 650 hours worth of work to do when 6 weeks is only 225 man hours.  I may be known at work for pulling off miracles but I think this one is beyond me. 

I've already talked to my boss about it.  Unfortunately the other people on my team who would normally take some of the burden are just as over-allocated as I am.  Our new guy doesn't start until January.  And having someone from one of the other teams help us out isn't really much of a help because it will take us longer to get them up to speed than it will for us to just do it ourselves.  I've given head's up to the project and resource managers so they have fair warning that some of this stuff is going to have to go to the back burner.  No one likes having their projects pushed to a later date but without additional (trained!) resources there's really no other choice.  

So part of today is to get a couple of small things out of the way as well as sitting down with a calendar and my task list to plan out the next several weeks.  I refuse to give up going to the gym 2-3 times a week or to miss Thursday yoga class.  That means that I'm going to have to get into the office earlier so I can work 9.5-10 hours and still get down to the gym by 6:00 (5:15 on Thursday).  It also means that I will likely be doing at least four hours from home on the weekends for a while. 

I need a clone.  Or an evil twin. 
mythicalgirl: (not amused)
I have to take a break for a few minutes.  My brain is effectively mush right now.  My big project is one of those that requires me to do things I've never done before.  I'm writing SQL that is way more complex (and efficient - I hope) than anything I've done previously.  And the code I'm writing is, like, wow!  I am really stretching the old brain cells on this one.  As usual this "growth opportunity" comes with a very tight time frame so I'm not only brain fried but I'm also majorly stressed out.  Google was no help today and the co-worker with the brain I need to borrow is out sick.  

Hence the short break and then I'm moving over to a different program, one that already exists, that I wrote, and that I freaking understand.  

This past weekend was taken up by work, some TV and a movie, and finishing Tethered by Amy MacKinnon.  Good book even though I figured out the twist and the bad guy way before the ending.  I liked how scarred and flawed the main character was.  I also liked that she was well aware of her outsider status and had formed a comfortable life that worked for her.  I also like how there were people around her who kept trying to get her to let them in despite her continuing to rebuf them.  If just felt real to me.  (No, I don't have the emotional scars but I am completely inept socially so there was some empathy there).  The ending was a bit cliche' and the whole thing felt like a first book - or almost like a fictionalized journal, which may actually have been the point.  Parts of the book are still popping into my head and dreams days later so there's some deeper subtext going on beyond what you read on the book jacket.  Definitely worth picking up if you're in the mood to try a new writer and I'll keep an eye out for the MacKinnon's next book.

The garden just doesn't seem to know when to die.  The tomato plant bloomed again and I now have probably a dozen little green fruits on it.  If the squirrel doesn't get them I'll have another harvest soon.  And more beans have come in despite the plants looking like they've been through the apocalypse.  

OK.  Breaks over.  I have to get some more work done before heading to the gym for at least 30 minutes.  I'll check in when I can.
   

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