Friday, March 30, 2007

So.... let me just explain my last two weeks of life.

Saturday march 17. First day of the Regional Tamiya Championship Series race... woke up early, kinda had a sore throat. Didn't really bother me, thought it was because our cat, Tickle, slept on my face (once in a while I have a sore throat in the mornings probably from the cats).

Rod, Dad, Dave and I all went to the track and got our RC cars prepped and ready for the day. Three qualifiers, and lots of good racing going on. Well, I had got my car all ready, painted up a new cool silver porsche Carrera GT body, had a new battery ready for the weekend and everything. Had spent the last couple weeks of RC time getting ready for this big event. Well, I get out there, and the car handles like complete crap... every right hand turn spins the car out hideously. After the first qualifier, I go thru the entire car and set it all up perfectly- it should have been a champ performer. It still kept doing it. I asked Rod to look at it, Dave looked at it (of course he took it upon himself to help me out) and James looked at it. No one could figure it out- my droop was perfect, my ride height was good, my camber was great- no issues at all. We all set it back up, and I ran again, to the same issue. I started learning how to drift around the corners fairly well. That made Dave think that we fixed the issue. He kept telling me it was fixed, because I wasn't spinning out anymore. (but the car could barely go around a corner without me using drift skills) but of course, to the driver, it was fairly obvious the car was loose as a nascar on ice. I was pulling 15 and high 14 second lap times. I felt really bad about my performance, and it sucked. Right after the 2nd qualifier, my voice started getting really rough... I handed my car off to the Tamiya pros, and none of them could figure it out either- all of them said it was set up very well. We re-did all of the settings again, changed up my wheels, etc, everything we could think of. Well, of course, I did better, learning even more how to drift my car. It was actually kind of fun- I think I qualified first in my group, drifting around the outside of some of them. By then, my voice was completely gone. I was coughing and feeling horrible, really bad headache. I took some advil. I kept thinking it was from the tire additive that everyone was using- the stench was very thick. I qualified 40th out of 55 people. I went home, and it immediately got worse. I just layed in bed trying to get better, consuming soup (you don't really eat soup) and resting.
The next morning, I felt quite a bit better, and went off to finish up the TCS race. I had Troy, a TCS past champion that went to China and won, look at my car. He's helped me out before, and I hooked him up with a copy of Windows Vista for his trouble. He found the issue, and BAM my car was amazing. I ran circles around everyone in my last qualifier, the last chance qualifier, on sunday. I easily ran good 13 second laps, and jumped up to a qualifying spot of 34th. I was feeling really good about the race, and Rod and I got placed in the same group- he was 2nd or 3rd in the group, and I was 7th or so (out of 10). Dave was even in our group, but he didn't show. He decided fishing was more important (crazy guy). Well, it came down to race, and Rod and I step up there. I took some advil to calm my head, and right when we started the race, (almost didn't make it- there was a rock stuck in my gear, good thing they had to restart because Rod crashed everyone, haha) I immediately jumped out to 2nd place, right behind Rod. After a lap or so, someone put me into the wall, and I fell down to 7th. I raced my way back up to 3rd, and was slowly catching 2nd place and Rod up in first, then my car started spinning out again. Gar!!! I fell back to 4th, and was able to maintain that for the rest of the race. All in all, it was pretty great, and loads of fun. And, Rosie, for the 30 minutes she was there, won a little 1/16th scale offroad truck. Pretty cool. Got home, planned to have a nice evening with Rosie... and then, I started feeling horrible again. My voice was completely gone, I could only wisper, and poor Rosie had to sit there and watch me hack and cough and die all night, when we had planned to get some dinner together.

So, I don't remember the next 5 days after that, besides being really sick and not being able to move from the bed too much. I felt infection creep from my throat to my jaw, then to my ears, then to my eyes. Finally, we were approaching the day we had to leave for Florida for Mandy and Daniel's wedding. I went to the doctor and he gave me some great perscription medicine that really helped- and he informed me that I was reacting rather horribly to the cats. For some reason, the flu was making me allergic to my cats. And, Tickle, the oldest, harriest of the bunch, had been sleeping next to me for the past 5 days while I was sick in bed. Great. That was thursday. That night, Rosie and I went and heard T.D. Jakes preach... it was amazing. He talked about peoples identity, and knowing who you are. It was a GREAT sermon. If you don't know who you are, then you don't know your boundaries. Then you seek after things that would normally disgust you. He used the prodigal son story in a very different way- as well as the verse that says your children are like arrows in your quiver. It was actually very healing- not because of the sermon, but because I was away from the cats, so my swelling went down and I felt better. I was really tired from the medicine, but it was really good to get fresh air. We moved the mattress down to the living room, where there wasn't a pile of tickle hair and dander, and that helped a bit. I didn't really sleep, but I got some rest. Too much cat hair in general in our house- it sucks having 3 cats and becoming violently allergic to them. I tried sleeping in my car, too. didn't work, because my body had reacted so much, that I couldn't stop coughing. But at least I knew why I was coughing, and I was actually looking forward to going to Florida for a few days, jsut to get away from violent reactions.

So, we went on the airplane to florida. Worst flight of my LIFE. Not because I was coughing. But because, I was sick, and therefore my ears did not pressurize correctly. I got off the plane, and I couldn't hear anything, and my ears hurt like someone attached an industrial strength vacuum to them and tried to suck my brain out of my ear. The only releif came when we hit the second flight- for the three hours on the second flight when we were about 20,000 ft, my ears were re-pressurized. Oh, and, the two flights were from midnight to noon. No sleep at all, the entire time. It was really great.
So we get to florida, and my ears are still attached to the invisible industrial vacuum. And they stayed that way until the day before we left Florida. Rosie's ears did it too, because she had gotten mildly sick as well. It was horrible, both of us were miserable, and not in the greatest mood. I'm really glad we didn't set eachother off too much. :)

So, we were in florida, I was on my second day of no sleep at all. Rosie hadn't slept either, so we were both dead tired. We took a 4 hour nap, and I woke up. I didn't want to sleep all day, in florida... so we decided to go to a cool looking interactive fun house type place. Rosie was too tired, so she stayed home. Well, while my parents tried in vain for a couple hours to find the place, Rod and Linney, in the car behind us, decided they needed to stop to calm crying children and get food. Dad still really wanted to go to the interactive exhibit place, so I grabbed the map and promptly led us to the front door within 20 minutes. :) hehe, it was quite the 2 hour adventure trying to find the place- we passed through disney world, downtown orlando, passed universal a couple times, generally just drove around orlando for 20 hours. I must say, the street signs really suck there- they threw us off a couple times. So we get to the interactive exhibit place at about 9pm or so... it was a cool place, with some really fun things to do. One of the more memorable things was a little earthquake simulator booth. It was like a dining booth, with a table- you step in and sit down, and its supposed to simulate a 5.5 earthquake. All it did was squeak back and forth in a nice rythm- one reminiscent of a crappy hotel bed in a seedy part of L.A.

So we grab some grub and go home after an hour of that interactive place. It really was pretty cool.
The next couple of days in florida were fairly non-descript and boring. My sister got married, and it was a little strange for me. I guess thats because its the second time. It was a little emotional. I love Daniel, and I love Mandy, both very dearly. It felt a little awkward to me, but I am truly happy for them. This is what they want, and what they have pursued for quite a while now. For the bachelor party, Daniel, his brother Brian, and I went to a cigar lounge (he had his sights set on smoking a cigar before the big day). We talked, but it never gave me the opportunity to talk to him really one on one. Which is fine, but thats how I really connect with people. He was really excited, and very happy. Thats what really mattered. It made me very glad to see that. I still felt a little awkward on the wedding day, and I think it kind of shows- I probably said one thing too many referring to sex, and I think I was just trying to hide my nervousness. I really love those guys, and they are very important to me. I just wanted to show them that, and I never got the chance... so busy with wedding stuff. Maybe I'll get the chance to when they get back from their honeymoon.

So the day after they got married, Rosie, Mom, Dad and I went to the universal parks. We got the "express pass" which let us pretty much skip most all of the lines for all the rides. And also because it was a tuesday, we managed to do every ride we wanted to, at BOTH universal parks. It was great. We had a blast, and I'm really glad Rosie got to experience it. I've been to a million theme parks, but this was only her second. And her first, was disney land. When she was 16. So I'm really glad she enjoyed it. :) we really enjoyed it. The next day, she went and picked up a big fatty turtle in our back yard. We took some cool pics- will haveto post those.

So we get back, still some sick. The flights back were much better- our ears didn't fail to equalize, the plane was bigger and more comfortable, and we had good seats. Unfortunately, when we got back, the allergies came on strong again and made me miserable.. but it wasn't nearly as bad as before we left.

So thats the last two weeks! What a massive blog entry- I think its the biggest so far.

The icing on the cake- this is Rosie's third week on the job. Today is her birthday, and I'm SO proud of her. She is being successful, and she is a LIGHT unto that workplace. Like any workplace, there are morons and hard to deal with people- but we need to be uplifting, successful, moral, and above all, Godly. And she is. Thats my girl.

So wish Rosie a happy birthday. She deserves it.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

So I saw this *awesome* position open up, in the Entertainment and Devices devision in Microsoft. Those are the guys that do Xbox 360, Zune, all that stuff. Its a build position. pretty much what I do now, just with cooler stuff. I sent my resume off this afternoon after getting it all prepped for them, and the guy that is hiring for this position notifies me that someone just accepted an offer for the position this morning.

Gah! :(

I'm really tired of IT. All the worst managers go here (because they can't cut it in the product groups) and the IT group really gets trashed on a lot and ignored, because we don't do anything cool. Just write sales applications for our sales people. Support internal websites and tools. Boring.

I want to work on something new and exciting, and technically challenging. I'm tired of bad management, working on applications that I could really care less about, being in a group that gets ignored, and gets less money for promotions, raises, awards, and regular pay.

I mentioned to my boss and bosses boss, (since I need their approval to move) that I was looking at this position. Well, since the position is no longer open, I'd rather stay in this group, until I see another one like it open up. I probably wont get any promos anytime soon, because I just got one, and I work on programs that are poorly done, and that looks bad after a while. I got a promo a few months ago, and lots of people agree thats the best time to do a transfer, because it looks really good.

I'll just wait until I see an opportunity open up like that again, I think. It would be really, really cool to do builds for that group. I'm sick of going to meetings and discussing how we can manage, deploy, write, and build software for sales people. I just don't care. I don't like to work late, because I really don't care if this application gets delayed a day. Its just some sales app, not some huge project that competes in the consumer market.

Today is Rosie's first day at work, and I'm EXTREMELY happy for her. I'm really proud, and I'm excited to see her step into her potential. I know God favors her, and I know He will be with her in her workplace. Thats exciting, becase I know God will bless her, and she will do very, very well. Its just her nature.

Ricky

Friday, March 02, 2007

Those were posted by Mom. :)

Lookin good.