Tuesday, May 15, 2012

This is not exactly how I envisioned it

YA KNOW…I thought that this period of between-contract-ness would be filled with all sorts of practi-creative endeavors.

Things like, I dunno, posting to this blog more than once a month or so?!

Things like…blowing the dust off my poor, neglected rigid heddle loom and cracking through some of my yarn stash. Dyeing up the t-shirt blanks out in the garage. Starting some good hard soaps curing. Filling the house with potted edible plants (it has always bugged me how we don’t have much greenery in here!). Putting up more recent pictures of the Denizens in the frames scattered around the house. Actual Decorating As Such, in other words.

The clean, folded laundry wouldn’t sit on the dining room table for weeks on end. The kitchen would always be clean. Or in the process of getting that way. I would cure the annual ant invasion before it even got started by keeping the crumbs off the floor. (HAHAHAHAHA, good one!) I would apply some oil to the kitchen cupboards. And shampoo the car’s seats so that I no longer had to drape napkins strategically to prevent getting sticky something all over my work clothes. (Sadly, I am totally not lying right now.)

There would be so many things finished by now. I would be a frickin’ Martha Stewart, with a hefty serving of Awesome Mother on the side and also there would be music and pies would be baked and it would be just so gaw-dam-ed PERFECT around here that we would make headlines around the world.

That was the plan, anyway.

Instead, I’ve been spending my days dealing with other stuff. Job searching. Paperwork. Testing for various job positions. Researching companies I’m planning to interview with so I have at least some idea what they actually do. Doing interviews that seemed to last for hours, for positions that ultimately went nowhere – either because they never called back, or I thought I would find them almost as enjoyable as trying to get sand out of my eyes using a toothpick.

I’ve got something lined up now and am in that holding pattern where everything is racked up and ready to go…but we need somebody at the client to actually sign off on it. {twiddles thumbs} Should happen…any time now…

I’d have to say, though, the one thing that is really eating up my time is all around brushing up on the stuff I haven’t been using lately in SQL Server.

I love my whole industry rather madly, but I have to admit: It’s awfully…big. The sheer volume of stuff I should at least be aware of (if not “expert” in using) is massive. And if I ever get to a point where I start thinking, …yeah…I’ve GOT this…, well, they’ll go and release a new version with a thumping huge list of new features. ARGH!

I had 2000 pretty well down. Then they went to 2005, which is what I’ve been working on the last three years at MegaBank. I’ve gotten most of the new analytic and engine features down now…but, the new stuff in 2008 and 2012 are new pages for me. Dammit.

I don’t think I fully realized when I got into this business that I would never, ever be completely out of school, you know? Every day, there’s something new to learn, some new feature, or some new use for an existing one, being published out there.

It’s a double-edged sword, really. On the one hand, if it wasn’t that way, I’m sure I’d get bored and wander off. That’s kind of how I am: If I’ve “mastered” something, I lose interest in it and want to do something else now.

So something that is constantly shifting and changing, adding new things, getting rid of old things, and evolving…is a good fit for my overall temperament.

But at the same time…gee whiz. I’m probably working more hours now getting caught up on whatever-all else has been going on out there in SQL Server Land while I was playing with “just” this set of features in 2005 than I worked while I was trying to finish up my project at MegaBank.

I want to learn it. I want to keep getting better and better at this. And this is one of the ways I’ll do it – by keeping up as best I can with the new stuff as it comes in, and refusing to cling to my old ways of doing things until the last possible second.

I don’t want to end up somebody for whom “twenty years experience” means “I have experienced the same year twenty times.”

That’s lame.


At times like these…

…I have to admit…

…I do rather wish these young pups would slow down a little, and quit releasing new things into the world every eight seconds that somebody like me then has to read up on, and puzzle through, and figure out if, and where, and how I can apply them to the sorts of things I’m doing.

Because there is a huge stack of folded laundry on the dining room table right now. And seriously, those car seats…they need shampooing.


This is not how I envisioned this “break” between contracts going down.

Oh well. I guess whining about it doesn’t help much either, does it…also, I think I’m going to take a break from NTILE functions and MERGE statements and take care of that car.

Because it is bugging me, something fierce.

I hope everybody else is having a less dry and pragmatic sort of week…I’m starting to suspect my life ranks pretty high on the “most boring person alive” list right now…


Tara said...

Boring? Pshaw, woman. If it's any consolation, yours is one of my most favouritest blogs on the whole wide Interwebz.

PipneyJane said...

While I miss your "voice" when you aren't blogging, I can completely appreciate what has been steeling your time and why. You want to do your best by your clients and by yourself. Not learning this stuff until you absolutely have to can eventually make you unemployable because employers will chose the easy/cheaper option first, i.e. someone who already knows it and that they don't have to pay to train up. Since you're a consultant, at least you can claim it as a business expense, right?

Baby steps for the other things. You're the most organised and one of the most driven people I know, so you'll get it all done but maybe not all at once.

- Pam

PS: my word verification is "hatertyp".

Kerri said...

You know what would make you feel better? IMing with me the next time hubby works from home and he's not on the pooter. ahem. computer. I miss our IM sessions. I've been reading the book "Sheepish" and it always makes me think of you. (Not meant as an insult...hee hee) As for staying on top of the latest SQL, you could use day-1 SQL and still beat out most of your competition. Sheesh!

CeltChick said...

I like to virtual-visit the Den, but I wouldn't want to live there. Way too much stuff goin' on for my taste! But it makes for very entertaining reading. Good luck on the job hunt.