Wednesday, April 11, 2012

So THAT'S what happened

I thought I must have done some blogging between 2008 and 2012.  Quite by accident today, I discovered that blog.  I decided to go ahead and import most of the posts into this one.  So, slightly more connection between the old and the new, for those of you following along (which probably is none of you).

Friday, April 06, 2012

Some updates


Okay, okay, so I vastly underestimated the Republican capability for hatred and slime. In retrospect, too, I think I underestimated racism and over-estimated the anti-Hillary feeling; I now think she could have gotten elected, and maybe we'd have been better off. I still like Obama a great deal, but I have been disappointed by him in some areas. I thought he should have done more when he had a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate: most particularly, repeal the Bush tax cuts on top earners sooner. I also wish he'd fought harder (or at all, really) for a public option in health care reform.  Most of all, the encroachments on civil liberties in the name of "homeland security" have largely not been reversed, and in some cases made worse.  I would like to believe that, given access to the information available to the President, he has reluctantly decided that such measures are absolutely necessary...but without access to that information myself, how can I know?

Nonetheless, given the alternatives we're being offered, I will certainly vote for the man in November.  OMG, GOP: do you have some kind of bet going on to see who the worst possible candidate can be?  Or (scarier thought) do that many people seriously agree with a substantial amount of what Rick Santorum says?


Personal life: well, I went to truck driving school, went out as a driver trainee for a few months, and was terminated due to two accidents (neither involving injuries; the first seriously damaged the trailer; the second was barely a scratch, but there was a "two strikes and you're out" policy for trainees).  I might possibly have been able to get another position -- in fact, currently I'm getting lots of emails from the company advertising free training, so they're clearly desperate for people -- but now, I have to admit, I'd be scared to.  I got pretty comfortable with driving on the freeway -- that's the easy part -- and imagine I eventually would have learned to cope with the difficulties of backing the trailer into loading docks.  But driving on city streets in traffic....maybe I just don't have as much situational awareness as I thought, or maybe my many years of driving hundreds of thousands of miles in small cars and trucks has ingrained too many habits in me, but I don't think I'm cut out for it.  Too bad in some ways, but possibly for the best in others; the social isolation of a truck driver's life (at least the kind of cross-country driving we were doing) might have been a very bad thing for me (and living for weeks on end in a truck cab with a co-driver and no privacy is even worse).

Currently doing customer service work, something I actually rather wanted to get into, as I always thought I'd be good at it....and I am.  I like the problem-solving, and I like actually fixing things for people; fortunately, I work for a company that actually wants you to fix things for people and gives you the power to do so, rather than one which is only willing to go to the effort or spend the money when there's no alternative.  I don't particularly care for the more "sales" part of the job -- taking orders for people who know what they want is fine, but trying to recommend things for people, or encouraging them to buy more or upgrade, isn't my forte.  Fortunately, again, the company doesn't judge us by our sales figures or pay us on commission, or encourage us to use any kind of high-pressure techniques (we are supposed to offer upgrades and options, but the key word there is "offer" -- if people say no, move on).

Downside is that after about two and a half years, I'm still technically a "seasonal" and mostly part-time employee.  It's a company with a highly seasonal business -- during certain peak periods they need thousands of people to staff the call center (well, over a thousand, I'm guessing) but outside those periods the need shrinks considerably.  I've made the cut to stay on during non-peak periods but my hours get cut back quite a bit during those times.  The good part of that is that during those peak periods, those of us who've been around more than a season or two generally get assigned to special tasks, supervisory-type duties, and so on, which is a nice change of pace (and usually effective full-time status and higher pay for the duration).

Still alone (no girlfriend), still a bit isolated (dependent on mass transit, light social life), still not enough privacy (have to share a condo with three other people), and the crossdressing part of my existence is on indefinite hold.  Still often depressed.  Still, on the whole, directionless. Still pretty poor.  Mostly coping.


Spending most of my gaming time playing Lord of the Rings Online, on the Landroval server.  A few of my real-life friends also play there, though for the time being I've largely lost them to Star Wars: The Old Republic.  Occasionally flit about in Second Life, but it's been pretty palling lately.  Now and then break out Dragon Age with the intention of eventually finishing it (both Origins and 2) but only sporadically.  In one regular table-top RPG, which I sometimes enjoy, but I'm honestly there more for the fact that it gives me the opportunity to spend time with friends that I would otherwise see very rarely.

New interface

Bleah, I say.  Bleah.  The previous interface was much less harsh looking and far more intuitive.  (What the heck is an "enclosure link"?)Is there a way to go back to it?  It said "try" the new interface.  How do I stop trying?

People in Stock Photos for Franken

Got this email myself...easier to link it than post it. :)

Monday, April 02, 2012

Back With the Wind!

So, I was re-reading Gone With the Wind yesterday -- well, OK, I'm still re-reading it. Part of the reason I was re-reading it is that it was a nice thick book and once I started it I wouldn't have to worry about what to read next for a couple of days. But, there's a bit (really, several bits, but one in particular) where Rhett is urging Scarlett to stop hiding her real self beneath the front she puts up to be acceptable by society, and it struck a chord. I have a tendency to compartmentalize myself a bit online, and in real life, showing a somewhat different front to different audiences, and I thought: there really isn't a place where I present the whole me. Then I remembered the name of this blog, and thought: "duh." Perfect place for it!

So no more holding back! I'll talk about all the stuff that interests me, whether it's Marx Brothers movies, history of the Civil War, gaming geek stuff, my (sadly inactive) crossdressing, my interest in BDSM, my search for a partner to talk about all this stuff with and act on more of it, politics and current events, or how good a Cake Pop from Shari's Berries tastes! It's all here! Nothing will be taboo! For once I'll show the real me....

...well, OK, hiding behind an absurd pseudonym. Still, you steps.....

Some updates on previous topics to follow. Got to get moving to work.