Where I’ve Been

Visiting Bitter’s grandmother, who turns 90 this year. When grandma invites you out to Hawaii, and offers you a condo to stay in, and a guest membership at her country club, you go! I’m still jet lagged, so things won’t return to normal until Monday. I hadn’t had a real vacation since, well, we went to Hawaii to visit her grandmother in 2010.


Gettin’ Old

Got back from the doc this morning. I was worried my blood work would come back a hot dumpster fire, but I was happy all my internal organs are functioning normally. BP is down but still too high. I have high LDL (bad cholesterol) but my good (HDL) is also high. She predicts statins in my future, but BP is the immediate priority. Triglycerides were OK. The only real bad news is that I’m pre-diabetic. Liver enzymes were a bit off, but she attributed that to being overweight. I don’t have any problems that can’t be attributed to just getting old.

In short I need to diet, lose weight, exercise, and keep experimenting with anti-hypertensives. So all in all, I feel pretty good about things. It’s all stuff I can manage. Lack of control is a big driver in my fear of medicine, so when I learn it’s stuff I can control  through my own actions, I feel a lot better.

Today I learned

That the Friendly Local Gun Store near me can order 15 round Glock 17 magazines. They had one in their new Gen4 G17, too; I saw the silly thing – dual stack, witness holes labeled to 15, same height as the 10-round magazine in the Gen3 next to it (and they interchanged), and it said 9mm on the top. Now why in the world would someone make such a thing? I can’t imagine the NJ market for Glock 17 magazines is worth that much effort. I just checked, Glock’s website says that 10-round magazines and 33-round magazines are an option. No 15 round. Unless it’s a “secret” option.

I guess I’ll see what Fedex drags in when I get a chance to pick the ones I had them order up. (The receipt says Glock 17 15 round magazines, so they didn’t mis-hear G19 or something)

Bad Migraine

Sorry I have been out of commission today. I have suffered from migraine auras usually without headache for years now, but I’ve never had one this bad. Usually they start out as a dot on my field of vision that sparkles a bit, then expands to kind of a zig zaggy dazzling pattern. In the affected area, I can’t really see.

Usually the process runs through in less than an hour and I’m OK. Today I’ve been getting multiple waves of expanding auras and the dot area it usually starts as has persisted, which interferes with being able to read.

I went to urgent care this afternoon and the doctor (who also suffers from them) checked me out and agreed the symptoms were that of a migraine. Eyes fine, arteries seemed to be moving blood fine, oxygenation fine, pulse and BP pretty high, but I have white coat pretty bad. No symptoms of anything indicating possible stroke. Doctor prescribed Sumatriptan, with the warning that it doesn’t often work. Took the first dose and the dot is still there, though not throwing off expanding auras anymore. Just took the second dose, so we’ll see if that helps, but I’m not optimistic.

I’ve had enough of these auras I usually shrug them off, but this one is terrifying because it’s hung around all day. In the mean time, reading is possible but difficult with that part of my field of vision distorted. Laying down in a dark room helps, but I can only do that so much before going stir crazy. I’m just hoping I don’t have a damned brain tumor or something.

Compared to some of my friends who have them, I have it easy. One can be debilitated with pain and light sensitivity for days at a time. Until now I’ve gotten off easy.

Please Don’t Take Offense if I Don’t Facebook Friend You or if You Were Unfriended

I’m speaking about my personal Facebook, not the blog’s. I’m slowly but surely scaling back my personal social media presence. I think Facebook and other social media like Twitter are ruining the country and harshening discourse. Back when I decided Comcast and Cable News were destroying the country, I cut the cord. That cord cutting wasn’t any cold turkey approach: it came about because I realized I was paying a crappy company like Comcast more than 100 bucks a month for TV that wasn’t worth watching.

Now I’m starting to feel the same way about Social Media. The blog will continue to use social media as its own entity, but I myself am scaling back to friends and family; basically people I know or have known in meatspace. I mostly use Facebook now to share old pictures that my family likes, so you’re really not missing much. At some point I’ll run out of old pictures, and then perhaps Facebook will go the way of Comcast. So please don’t be put off if I don’t friend you. Eventually I want to be free of Facebook and the like.

Wishing Everyone a Nice Holiday Weekend

I’ve never liked saying Happy Memorial Day, but I do hope you all get to enjoy some time with family and friends. Summer here officially started (weather wise) Thursday. I guess we don’t get a spring. But there are upsides:

BBQ Memorial Day Weekend 2016

It’s hard to find good Q up here in yankeeland, so I have to make it myself. An 8lb Boston Butt for pulled pork either tonight or tomorrow (depending on when it gets finished), and some armadillo eggs to tide us over until the butt is ready.

Playing Catch Up

I arrived back from Louisville to an urgent client project with a deadline of Friday, so I’ve been unable to post. We will be returning to our regularly scheduled blogging shortly. I’ll probably have a few things later this afternoon. Do you ever feel like taking vacation isn’t worth it? One of the things I’ve learned over the years is that two weeks is the minimum to really unwind and forget about work. Anything under that and you tend to just shift work around, rather than really accommodate for vacation time.

Busy Times, Hence Why I’m Posting Not So Much

I’m in the middle of a client demo this week, so if blog content has seemed light the past several weeks, that is why. It all builds up to this. We’ve been developing an RFID solution for one of our clients, and I volunteered to be developer, project manager…. basically a one man band. In truth, I like to fly that way. I am in my element when there’s a project within my capabilities and I am confident I don’t need to bring on a team to help out. Things are going well, but you do want to dot all the Is and cross all the Ts when your client’s CFO is reviewing your work. There’s always things that will go wrong testing in a real environment as opposed to the ideal conditions in a “lab.” You want to keep the client interested by meeting and exceeding their original vision. You have to show potential and value when that’s what you’re brought in to do. That’s what we do.

If my client had gone to one of the big technology consulting firms with an idea like this, Very Big Consulting would have come back with a seven figure quote, and team of a dozen people for two years. Most of that staff from Very Big Consulting would be kids right out of college with no real world experience. You’d have a senior guy “running” the show who billed at a rate some talented lawyers would envy, but whose real job would be keeping the victim’s client’s decision makers happy (think awesome golf and dining opportunities) while not doing much to actually accomplish anything. Whether the project actually has any chance of succeeding would be left in the hands of the more capable workers among the team from both the victim client and Very Big Consulting. If you’re lucky, you may have something that is a fragment of your original vision when you’re done. If you’re very lucky, it might even be at least somewhat functionally useful.

We’ve cleaned up more than a few messes from Very Big Consulting for some of our clients our 16 years of operation. In fact, probably one of our biggest obstacles is convincing new clients, “No, really, we’re different than those other consulting firms. We’ll bring in capable people across the Board. We don’t look at you as a resource to be milked. We won’t bring in a team unless we need a team.” So I’m hoping for this client we deliver a proof of concept that we can develop into a real product to benefit their customers. When all is said and done, it’s very doubtful the client will spend more than low-six-figures, let alone seven. But we are not Very Big Consulting. And it’s for that reason I have to be a bit scarce these few weeks.

Move Completed

I wired up the last few phone drops in our new building yesterday, so for now our office move is complete. I still have several tasks to do, but they can proceed with a normal priority, rather than having to get things working by the time everyone gets back from the holiday.

The good news is the new office is 10 minutes closer for me. Door-to-door time yesterday was 43 minutes traveling there and 46 minutes returning home. That’s almost enough to make me think I could do three days in the office and two at home, instead of the other way around.

The bad news is that our movers destroyed more than half of our furniture. We use Bush Furniture, which looks good, but it’s all cheap particleboard. To move it safely, it really needs to be disassembled. If you’re not going to do that, picking it up and carrying it is a must. The movers were dragging it over the floor instead of picking it up and carrying it. I lost my bookshelf to the move. It was really more a question of what didn’t they break.

Either way, I’m glad that’s over with.