Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Don't Call It a Comeback

A’ight people here it is. After being overwhelmed by vacations and absences of the people I work for, I find myself with more or less nothing to do at work so I’m trying to make myself write at least 500 words/day for the next couple of weeks. Other things I have planned for my at work vacation are ordering the capacitors I need to revive my TiVo and looking into graduate school and/or registering for a graduate class in the grad program I’m considering.

The TiVo Thing 

Our Tivo box died on us about 3 years ago and we were in the middle of mostly packing up our condo in preparation to move to Chile for six months, so I punted & got the Comcast X1 DVR as a quick fix. We got back to the States and found ourselves locked into getting Verizon FiOS and their horror show of a DVR that doesn’t work as well as our 10 year old TiVo. Finally I have the time and mental capacity to take on repairing the TiVo, so I ordered a new, bigger, pre-baked hard drive, and installed it with no problems. Naturally, it turned out that was only part of the problem and we have a well-documented problem with the power supply too. Argle bargle!!!

A few Google searches and a bit of forum cruising turned up details on what the problem is (bad capacitors) as well as how to ID/replace bad capacitors. It’s a slightly complicated undertaking, but 25 years ago I did a bit of soldering on boards, and in the age of YouTube finding instructional videos is pretty easy. Problem is with my life I’ll never have the 3-4 contiguous hours needed to pull/replace the capacitors and bring that TiVo back to life, so detailed planning is necessary to accommodate doing this in a start/stop fashion. Thankfully this little break at work will allow me to do that.

Grad School

I totally fucked myself when I went back to finish my bachelor’s degree, what I should have done was gotten into finish your bachelor’s/get your master’s degree kind of program and deaded this shit back then. Alas, I was still too invested in my narrative about the stupidity of school (school sucks for the most part, I will die on this hill) to think a little more long term and invest in grad school. I have reached the conclusion that with the way things are as a government contractor, I’m going to be stuck at my current level of Sr. Tech Writer/Analyst or a weak matrix project manager unless I have a graduate degree.

Back when I was still a college dropout and I would be complaining to my Dad about how stupid my boss was or how someone who wasn’t as good as I was got pulled into a management position ahead of me, his response was always that this was the way it was going to be as long as I didn’t have a degree. I knew he was right, but I fought this assessment for many years before I finally went back to school and now I see the same pattern developing again. I’m not exactly falling behind my friends career wise, but rather I’m not in a position to apply for and get the kind of senior positions that give me a seat at the big table because I don’t have a grad degree.

 I want and need a seat at the big table, I’m tired of watching people make the same mistakes over and over again in our government. So grad school is back on the table.

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