Ramblings from the Warrior's Den
Sunday, August 24, 2003
Once again, I seen to have let this Blog go without being updated for nearly two months. oddly enough, this isn't For lack of trying. The documents Folder on my Pocket PC is littered with the half-baked fragments of several attempts at blogging. I suppose I could actually post some of them, but

I caught most of James Lileks' appearance as guest host of the Hugh Hewitt Show on Friday. I'm sure that there will be more than adequate commentary on this appearance fo be found elsewhere (in particular, on the Bleat,) but one thing in particular that stood out to me was his explanation that he does not have the luxury of being able to take his time when he writes, and that has to be able to write as freely as if it were speaking. Anyone here who has seen the way I usually write things would attest to the fact that I just can't do this. Most of the time when l write, the process ends up being something to the effect of writing a couple of sentences (maybe a paragraph if I'm feeling ambitious) then get up and wander around for a while. When I then sit back down at the keyboard, I usually end up revising the heck out of the stuff I just wrote, sometimes several times before I finally stop wondering what I was thinking then I wrote that particular bit of literary tripe. And yet in spite of this writing technique, somehow I manage to frequently obliterate whatever page limit or maximum length that has been set for whatever it is that I'm writing. When this happens, there are a couple of different approaches that can be taken: first of all, you can try to reduce the font used, and try to get everything to fit into the alloted number of pages. In the time I've spent in school, I've lost count of how many assignments I've Submitted in 6-point Arial, with as little space between lines as I can get away with and still look like I'm at least appearing double-spaced. The results of this are generally mixed, which results in plan B: figure out how to reduce it by about six pages. The ultimate result of this ends up looking something vaguely like like the original, assuming you ran it through a meat grinder a couple of times and duct taped it together. Somehow, the end result ends up being at least passable, at least as far as the original assignment is concerned. Of course, I'd much rather be turning in the ridiculously long version I wrote in the first place. but I find that the people reading the stuff I rarely need insomnia cured.

Anyway, I've been doing mostly the usual stuff. School should be starting again in a couple of weeks. For the time being, I have somehow ended up back in technical support once again. It was now close to five years ago that I left my first tech support job, vowing never to return. There seems to be some sort of "moth to the flame" style of attraction involved in the profession. To be honest, I probably wouldn't mind much if I never had to do support again (In order to meet established standards of decency, we'll just leave it at that - ed) and yet somehow I keep ending up back there. I won't go into a whole lot of details, but I'll just say that it involves a very large locally based software company dealing with an unprecedented volume of support calls due to the Blaster virus going around the Internet. For the past two weeks, they've been in full-blown crisis mode, and they've reached the point of recruiting developers and testers to volunteer to spend a few hours on the tech support lines. I've been brougth in, along with about 20 other people, to come help on the support lines for a couple of weeks until they can get this dealt with. Even with all the extra help, wait times are still exceeding two hours, and don't seem to be showing much sign of slowing down yet. The things I'll do for some free soda....
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