Thursday, December 28, 2006

Is it Time to Go Yet?

7:51 am - Listened to a little bit of the Ricky Gervaise Christmas Podcast on the drive in. Carl Pilkington is hillarious. It's hard to know, though, if he actually means to be. His brain works so differently that it would be easy to just call him stupid but I don't think that would be a fair assessment. Anyhow, either you've heard the podcast and know for yourself what I mean or I recommend you go out and download it free from iTunes. I think if they did more, I would be willing to pay for them if they were reasonably priced. But I haven't listened to too much of this one and they were saying they were bored of the whole thing.

My alarm went off at 5:50 and I snoozed it until 6:30. I paid some bills and had breakfast and got out the door later than I had intended. A new goal is to start going to bed earlier and start getting up earlier again. When I got to work I felt like I could do a lap or two, but then I looked at the thermometer in the car and it said 28 so I said nevermind.

I'm feeling tired this morning but hopefully I can quickly snap out of that. When I was making my cofee I tore open the Equal packet and some of the Equal-dust went straight into my mouth. That was a nice jolt.

9:01 am - Just finished devotions. Definitely tired today, yep, tired.

2:23 pm - It's been a slow day. There's no work for us, so we're doing data cleanup. It's something we need to do, but it's something we shouldn't have to do. We do it because they employee people at minimum wage to put the data into the system in the first place. People who don't know what an e-mail address looks like, what it should have (like a @ and .) and shouldn't have (spaces, commas, etc.). And they also scan some of it. So when we're collecting addresses that were rejected by the system, we have to look to see if it's a scanning problem (ad.com instead of aol.com) or a human error (like earth.link.net). Of course, those are the easy ones.

But while I talk about scanners or people who haven't been trained, the biggest culprit? Oracle. We have this big huge fancy Oracle system that keeps track of millions of dollars and thousands of donors, but it lacks (a) the ability to check an e-mail address -- when enterred -- for missing information or invalid characters and (b) the ability to quickly update records. Right now, for each bad address we find, we have to search for that address and then go into the record, go to the tab, create a new entry for the corrected address and then inactivate the bad address and then blah blah blah blah. I can do several a minute, but it's still far more effort than should be made, considering how much I'm paid.

2:40 pm - Lori and Rachel came to visit me today at lunch. They usually bring me lunch once a week. It's a nice break, to get to see them in the middle of the day. We had soup and crackers. Then we walked around the ponds as we usually do. It was so cold. Probably less than 40. Two of the three ponds were frozen, the third was in the sun. The first one was filled with cattails but the second one was pretty much just a solid uninterrupted sheet of ice. I threw large rocks on it and marvelled as they would make a splash as they broke the ice, but then skip across the surface of the ice. I walked around a second time and brough the camera to take some photos of the ice.

4:33 pm - Is it time to go yet? It's gotten dark outside. I'm looking forward to when it gets lighter earlier in the afternoons. We'll be able to walk again after work. That'll be nice. I ought to start taking the dog for walks when it's not too cold and not raining. It'd be good exercise for both of us and we both need it. I just completed a task worse than data entry. Fortunately, it got paired back, but I'm betting it's not entirely over with. I guess that's what happens when you don't have anything monumental to do... last minute requests actually get done. Oh well. I guess that's a good thing? Someone's lack of preparation didn't cause them difficulties and if this is God's work, I guess it's all for the good that I was able to do it quickly. That old saying "A lack of preparation on your part doesn't constitute an emergency on my part." or however it goes really doesn't apply here.
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