Question For English Majors

Is irony used correctly in the following sentence?

During a Cleavland Indian at bat in the fifth inning, with a fan pounding rhythmically on an Indian type drum in the outfield supporting an offensive rally, was the public address system operator being ironic by playing a recording of the bugle call Charge at the same time?

Simple PHP Gallery

Added a couple of new things to the web site. If you came via the old blog page address you saw the main one. New index file in the root directory. Depending, you might have seen that image before. Once a couple years ago that is what the front page looked like and there were three links, one to each of my blogs. Unless there is a simple two step process to move the new Word Press blog into the root directory this is the new site.

Also we have installed Simple PHP Gallery to handle photo posting. This thing is simple to use, hence the name, all you have to do to add a quick gallery is upload a directory full of images under the main one and poof, there you go. So far I just have two online and the style is the default supplied, so there is no cohesiveness to the site — yet.

Started down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 309

Sniff, Sniff

They kind of made the decision easy for me as I got a rejection letter in the mail today. Not that it was unexpected, I totally blew the “personality” side of the interview. They had 7 questions that outlined real life scenarios and required an answer using cause, effect and solution. I didn’t expect something like that and wasn’t really prepared. Plus essay tests were always the hardest for me, I have a hard time coming up with improv answers that are cohesive and intelligent. It actually took me until question #4 before I could give them any sort of answer and it was personal life based and lame. I struggled mightily on the next couple, looped back through to the beginning, but still totally refused, no just plead a case, that I couldn’t come up with an example for one question and left it blank.

I did alright on the “technical” side, but that was to be expected. They were more knowledged based, almost multiple choice type questions on AutoCAD and drawings. Plus I felt more at ease with my inquisitors as they were engineers not the previous HR folks.

The one on one with the department manager was a toss up, we chatted, I gave answers, I looked in him in the eye. I don’t now if it mattered, but I didn’t ask too many questions. I could get a gist of the job from listening and it was doable, there were a lot of new things to learn, but was more of a lateral move than a giant step up.

Even if they had called back, I’m sure I wouldn’t have taken the job anyway. I make pretty good money now and some how I don’t see them offering even that much money for that level of a position. And even with the better benefits offered I would have wanted more cash to jump ship.

Moving Appears Easy

Sorry Will, but you might need change your link to this site — again. Gonna put this blog back in the root of 9 steps and that’s it.

Moving WordPress

Tomorrow is the monthly MMC meeting, so I probably won’t have time then, maybe Friday. 

Started down, went up, still up.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 310


So shouted the headline the other day in the local paper. I wondered who. Did Madonna tire of the English countryside? Was P Diddy bringing his fleet of blinged Diet Pepsi trucks to town? Nope. The former lead singer of ‘60s rock group The Youngbloods and his wife are going to build a 5,000 sq ft cottage in Aiken’s Historic District adjoining Hitchcock Woods. Turns out that Jesse Colin Young married an Aiken native some 18 years ago and the family (they have two kids) wants a nice place to settle in. Even though they plan on living in Aiken full time, they are keeping the house in Hawaii.

Some Enchanted Ceiling

I’ve added another gallery to the list. This one is for my Enchanted Ceiling pictures. I forget exactly how I stumbled on the site, but once I did I was hooked. I have 14 photos posted there (search for Brian, all but the Madison, WI shot are mine) and I have posted a number of them on my blog(s). When I went through the archives I discovered 18 photos with the category of Enchanted Ceiling and that is where the gallery started. When I started comparing the 2 lists it turned out that there were 4 on the Enchanted Ceiling site that were not ever added to the blog. Out of the original 18 in the category there were 8 that I hadn’t posted on Digging some more I found two other photos that were blogged about that didn’t get the EC category, nor submitted to the EC site. This means I have 10 more photos here than there. I guess I better get busy submitting…

Started up, went down, back up, back down, up again, still up.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 328

My Hero

I have read a couple of his books before and they are laugh out loud funny. Today at the used book store Donna unearthed one of his from 2000 that I remember reading about, but never got around to actually reading the book. From Bill Bryson’s “In a Sunburned Country:”

It’s all right,” she giggled. “It’s dead.”

We peered cautiously at the little object on her fingertip, a telltale red hourglass shape on its shiny back. It seemed unlikely that something so small could deliver instant agony, but make no mistake, a single nip from a redback’s malicious jaws can result within minutes in “frenzied twitching, a profuse flow of body fluids, and in the absence of prompt medical attention, possible death.” Or so the literature reports.

You probably won’t see any redback’s out there,” Sonja reassured us. “Snakes are much more of a problem.”

This intelligence was received with four raised eyebrows and expressions that said, “Go on.”

She nodded. “Common brown, western taipan, western puff pastry, yellow-backed lockjaw, eastern groin groper, dodge viper…” I don’t remember what she said exactly, but it was a long list. “But don’t worry,” she continued. “Most snakes don’t want to hurt you. If you’re out in the bush and a snake comes along, just stop dead and let it slide over your shoes.”

This, I decided, was the least-likely-to-be-followed advice I have ever been given.

That is how I wish my words came out.

Started up, went down, back up, back down, then up, still up.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 332

Some Bad News & Some Great News

That was how it was presented to us in an all employee meeting yesterday.

First the bad news, our company will not be giving a General Wage Increase (hourly) or a Merit Increase (salary) for all of 2006. Second the great news, they will now offer a profit sharing plan. And to kick it off we will be included in the company wide 2005 profit sharing. On November 15th an amount of approximately 4.78% of your base salary will be deposited in an account setup for you you use at retirement.

The great news was only great if you were not already living from paycheck to paycheck and really counted on that 3% raise for this year. Fortunately this probably is only a small percentage of employees.

For Donna and I it is doubly great as we will both get a nice little sum in our accounts. This will be in addition to our current 401k where we are tucking aside 15% pre-tax for our retirement. Our 401k is invested in a plan that adjusts automatically as we move towards retirement, slightly higher risk funds now that will slowly change to more conservative funds the closer we get to the “golden years.” This profit sharing stuff is kind of found money and I think we will plop it down in the most aggressive fund we can find. If it tanks, pffft, who cares, we already have Social Security, the meager retirement fund the company already has and that 401k to fall back on (God willing and the creek don’t rise.)

We have been after a 401k match for years and the whole we are a “cost center” and we must stay competitive thing had worn thin a long time ago. Every quarterly communication meeting, every yearly state of the company meeting and every bi-annual corporate opinion survey the first question asked was always, “When are we going to get a 401k match?” The first answer to the question, “What is the one thing that you would change about ASCO is?” “401k match.” More than a few folks have left the company and in their exit interview when asked why, the answer was, that’s right, the new place offers a matching 401k.

A couple of things aligned to make this happen. One of which was the company had a really good year (thanks to all of you who bought our valves.) Another was we saved a bunch on money on medical insurance by switching to BCBS of Alabama. The no pay raises for a year thing certainly helped a bunch. So big thanks to company management for pulling this off, we finally get a 401k match, even if it is variable from year to year (historically it has been around 5% for the last 5 years) and it is called Profit Sharing. When you stop and think about it, they did go the extra mile for the people too, a 401k match would have been cheaper on them because not every one participates in the voluntary savings program. With the profit sharing everybody gets a slice of the pie, even if they don’t want it.

Another Opening of Another Gallery

Added a Washington DC gallery today. It is pictures from Donna and my 3-day trip to the nation’s capital back in March of this year.

I’m going to start working on making galleries for the all the photo memes I used to do before burning out. These will take longer and I’m not going to post every one. Theme Thursday and Photo Friday I did nearly every week for a little over two years, that means over a 100 photos and I know not all of them were winners. I’m thinking maybe what I consider the best 25 or 30 will be all I include from those two. Phototime Tuesday ran for about a year and a half and I had just started doing Lensday Wednesday, so those pools and consequentially the galleries will be smaller.

Started up, went down, back up, back down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 335

More Peektures

I culled from 101 Theme Thursday (now called Thursday Challenge) photo submissions from the couple years I was an active participant and picked 20 favorites. They are now in yet another gallery. Still to come, my best of PhotoFriday & Phototime Tuesday entries in their own galleries as well. I’m not sure about Lensday Wednesday, because I was just starting to do it when gave up the photo memes cold-turkey I only have 17 entries total. Maybe I can get the top 5 or 10 in a gallery.

Started down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 335

Can You Hear Me Now?

Can You Hear Me Now?Last Sunday we went to the Mediterranean by enjoying the Greek Festival in Augusta. This Sunday we went back in time. We went and enjoyed an afternoon at the North Augusta Living History Park for something called Colonial Times. Lots of folks in period dress doing period things, with even a small battle between Colonists & Indians against the British. Now with blank musket fire to scare small children and pets. The best part was a family act as a traveling troupe performing magic and juggling and music. I only took a handful of pictures, but this is my favorite, apparently shopping in the 1780’s was an awful lot like 2005. A man with a list in a store comparing goods against his list while conferring with his wife…

I must apologize if your domain contains any of the following words because I just banned you from viewing this web site: meridia, xenical, carisoprodol, viagra, ambien, levitra, adipex, phentermine or hydrocodone.

Started down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 335

Stop Already With The Galleries

Added the last two photo meme galleries, Phototime Tuesday and Lensday Wednesday. I had only been doing the Lensday Wednesday for a short time, so I only had 17 pictures to choose from. I narrowed it down to 7 I really liked, but I hated to have a gallery with an odd number of photos in it, so I added back 3 of the honorable mentions to fill it out. If you can guess which ones were the 3 fill-ins correctly, you will win a prize. Maybe an 8 x 10 framed photo of your choosing or something else equally fabulous.

Back Office Biz

I’ve started to go back over my off-line archives and weed out the multiple posting of the same topics. I’m also taking out any of the photo related entries now that I’ve put them all in galleries. All of this was caused by having multiple blogs for multiple purposes and later combining them into one big ol’ blog-o-rama. I’m tossing out some of the lame entries as well, those that were posted just for the sake of posting and have no redeeming value. This is not to say that I can eliminate everything that has no value, if I did, there wouldn’t be anything here (and right about now there are some of you thinking that wouldn’t be such a great loss.) This is definitely slow going, I worked at it for a couple of hours on and off and only managed to get through a little less than two month’s worth. there are 3 years worth to do total.

Seems A Long Time Ago…

2004. Now you can read almost all about it. When I first started with the text file of that year it was over 900k. By the time I was done it was half that. Quite a bit of that was due to eliminating the photo meme entries. I was doing 3 a week. Then I ditched a bunch of how’s the whether posts and similar filler.

Once I imported that file my list of monthly archives doubled in length. Not really happy with that development (especially if I do the previous 2 years too) I went looking for a solution. Like most things blog wise, if you can imagine it, someone else has already created a plug-in for it. Thanks Rob.

Now I just need to figure how to display the whole months posts on the archive page like MT used to do. Then I will work on getting them to display from first to last, which seems better suited to archives, rather than starting at the end of the month.

I wonder it categories should do that too? Or should they be like the front page and display from most recent to oldest? No rest for the weary…

That’s Not Fair

That?s Not FairI guess business was good last year. First they announced we will be adding profit sharing to our benefit roster, then yesterday they passed out free golf umbrellas to everyone and today we had a company Fun Day. They supplied the hamburgers, hot dogs (with all the fixings), chips and never ending fountain drinks and set up tables and chairs on the front lawn. They also gave away about 70 door prizes. Donna won a 8′ x 11′ dining canopy. And for desert they gave out Megapasses, admission plus all the rides you want, to the Western Carolina State Fair that is right across the street.

Donna and I were the only ones to actually walk over. It may have been right across the street, but you had to walk all the way to the other side to get to the entrance (probably a 1/2 mile.) We didn’t ride any rides, we watched other people ride. We didn’t partake in any of the games of “chance” either. We did walk around the whole place twice, we looked at all the displays and contest entries and came home. Thanks ASCO.

Oh, it happened again. Two days in a row now. On one of the circuits as we passed by the dunk the Bozo tank, I heard some one shout, “Hey old man!” When I looked over, the clown laughed and said, “Yeah you.” I kept on walking…

What Ever Happened To The Top Count?

I have been forgetting to put it in that is all. Last time I remembered was last Monday, well you didn’t miss much, it hasn’t changed.

It might change this week though, forecasting upper 30’s for a couple of overnights.

I’m off for the next couple of days. Going to the tourist hot spot of Albemarle, NC and will be without internet access, so there may be an empty spot in your internet life until Thursday. Only I won’t be visiting the Reed Gold Mine, myself and ASCO’s CNC Programmer will be going to school to learn GibbsCAM.

Started down, still down.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 335

Daylight Savings Time

Daylight Savings Time ends (or is it starts) tomorrow morning at 2:00AM. So tomorrow at this time it will be this time.

Don’t forget to set your clocks ahead 23 hours tonight before you go to bed or you will be late (or is it early) for church on Sunday.

Back Again

Back in Albemarle for another couple of days of GibbsCAM training. This time it is three of us, Mark from last week plus another Mark from the Tool Room. Once again we are staying at the Holiday Inn Express and I’m conducting business on their communal PC near the lobby.

Like last week, I got the guys checking in to use my Priority Club Card number, so this trip I’m racking up triple points towards future stays at a Holiday Inn. Trouble is to agree to it this time I had to promise to take them along on Donna and my next free stay. We’ll get a room with two double beds, one for us and another for the two Marks… 

Started down, went up, still up.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/05: 344