Again, I was terribly pleased to get back to work on Thursday, but I’m glad I only had a two day work week as I’m still not 100% and my leg would get stiff in the last few hours of the day while at my desk.
I came back to 348 emails. 50-80 were intercompany chit-chat as EP is a pretty casual company and you’ll routinely get company-wide emails from people selling their houses, showing photos of a stray dog they’re trying to get rid of, or selling tickets to a show or game. The rest were things I had to attend to, and I took care of the mission-critical stuff before lunch that day.
We had two new additions to my department in the three weeks I was away. One was an accounting manager who may become my supervisor over the next several months. He seems like a nice, quiet guy, and I’m estimating that he’s 3-4 years younger than I am. I think I’ll get along with him with no problem. The other new employee is a 20 hr/week temp to help out the billers that I haven’t even said hello to yet. I didn’t mean to be rude, but I had a lot of work to catch up.
I also missed the (yearly?) drug test while in the hospital. I’m glad about that, not because it would have been a problem (Two half-joints in 1998 were my only illicit experiments), but I am kind of opposed to mandatory drug testing. If someone seems to be on something at work, or is showing evidence that they might have a problem great, test that person, but I don’t think companies have any right to intrude on their employees in this manner if there’s no job related problem. I guess I’m leaning more libertarian in my old age.
Anyway, once again it’s good to be back in the saddle at EP. It’s not my ideal method of employment, but I’m pretty damn happy with my coworkers, my usual tasks, and the company in general, and I earn a very fair salary with great benefits. I don’t plan on leaving anytime soon and I hope the feeling is mutual.
I had the PICC line removed Wednesday afternoon and I went back to work yesterday.
No pain at all when the home health nurse removed the PICC line. She basically just removed the dressing covering the tube and started pulling it out of my arm slowly. It was around the same diameter as a thick spaghetti noodle, but 26 inches long. The wound will take a day or two to heal and I’m still not supposed to pick up anything heavier than ten pounds with that arm.
It’s kind of strange to say, but I was really excited about going back to work yesterday. It’s funny how many hugs and well-wishes you receive after you’ve been out sick for three weeks. My only problem was my leg stiffening up over the last two hours of work, but that should only be temporary as I’ve been mollycoddling my leg up until now.
Oh, and in the morning before going to work I met with a nutritionist to go over how I should modify my diet to deal with type two diabetes and lose some weight. It’s a pain, but hopefully if I work at it I can stave off insulin injections and whatnot.
…still stuck at home, doing IV injections and sleeping throughout half the day. At least I have fast DSL and a projector to comfort me.
I may try to venture out with some friends for a few hours tonight.
Well, I was released from the hospital on Sunday. My ex-girlfriend Lisa picked me up and dropped me off because everyone else was busy on Easter Sunday.
I now have to self-administer vancomycin, my antibiotic, via an IV PICC line going into my heart. I have to do this twice a day until next Monday, when hopefully the damned thing will be removed and I can go back to work. Here’s a graphic of the PICC line:
Being at home is better than the hospital, but I have to rest and elevate my leg so much I’m not getting anything done around the house and I can’t really spend the time watching movies or playing around on the internet as I would like. Hopefully, I’ll get a little more stamina soon.
Thursday evening I started feeling extremely nauseous with both a fever and chills. I left the board game event I was at to go to my old place and rest for a few hours. I fell asleep in the overstuffed easy chair in a weird position and when I woke up all the circulation to my left calf was cut off. I hopped around on that leg for a while and drove home.
When I woke up on Friday, the numbness was replaced by extreme pain, swelling, and redness. I called in at work and like an idiot I I’d give it another day before going to the doctor.
Saturday bore no improvement, in fact I felt worse. At this point I called Jacob and asked him to come pick me up and take me to the emergency room. I decided to go to Allen Bennett as I thought that would be less of a wait(I was right, no wait at all!), and at first the ER doc thought I might have a deep-vein-thrombosis blood clot. I had an ultrasound performed and discovered it was not a clot thankfully, but cellulitis and an infection. So I’ve been here since noon Saturday as an IV-dripping, bad food eating, open butt gown wearing, bad movie on tv-watching inpatient. I called EP this morning and let my supervisor Michael know what was going on. He told me not to worry about anything here but just concentrate on getting better. I also received a flower from EP a few hours later.
So this is day 3 of my hospital stay. I’m not certain when I’ll be able to leave. Hopefully by Friday. Having a laptop and an internet connection is my one saving grace.
Today after work I got together with Jacob and Andy at my old place and we played the Endless Tour on Rock Band. Basically, it is a concert where you play every song you have installed for Rock Band, one after the other. It was a total of 58 songs and took from 5:30pm to 12:35am, with a one hour break for dinner(mmm…Mexican).
We started with both guitars on hard and vocals on medium and passed whatever we were playing clockwise every three songs. It was a lot of fun, but not something I’d want to do terribly often.
Also, www.upstategeeks.com is coming along nicely. I put up some basic banners, and we’re getting more users and more posts. I’m going to order some “free” business cards from vistaprint.com with the site to leave at game shops and other geek natural habitats.
They go by so quickly, don’t they?
On Friday after work, my friend Teresa came by and we drank copious amounts of rum and some awful blackberry wine she bought. I bought lots of fruit and made some cracked out pina coladas and strawberry daiquiris in my uber-blender. We started the dvd of Sin City(she had never seen it) but only got halfway through it when I paused to get more drinks and we ended up with stereo typical drunken conversation. She slept on my couch and the next morning I made a simple breakfast of bacon and eggs and we finished Sin City. She was my first official houseguest.
On Saturday I pretty much just did stuff around the house and lazed about. I finally setup the wireless keyboard and mouse I bought a few weeks ago, and it is so much better than my laptop keyboard. I originally bought it to use in the living room when I connect my computer to the projector, but now I think I will use it on my desk at home as well. It keeps the monitor 10″ or so further back than I’m used to, but the typing position is much more comfortable. I got a great deal on the keyboard/mouse combo as well. It’s the Microsoft Wireless Laser Desktop 4000 which Staples had on sale for $15 as a doorbuster a few weeks ago. Of course they sold out in hours, but I took the flyer to Office Depot and pricematched it for $15 and they’re also having a $15 mail-in-rebate on this item so I essentially got an $80 keyboard/mouse for free. Go Dave!
On Saturday night I also watched True Romance, which I can’t believe I haven’t seen before now. It’s incredible how many people that Tony Scott got for this Tarantino penned script. Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette, but you’ll also see Brad Pitt, Christopher Walken, Dennis Hopper, Gary Oldman, Samuel L. Jackson, and Val Kilmer as the ghost of Elvis! It’s cheesy as hell but as Nigel Tunney would say this one goes to 11.
Sunday had a bit more going on. I picked up my friend Linda and took her to a friend of her’s house to meet a few of her gamer friends and test out the rules for the Firefly LARP she’s running in April. I’ve volunteered to be an NPC, I’ll be the bartender at the local house of ill repute. I’m not a big fan of LARPs, but she’s putting a lot on the line to make this happen and I want to be a good friend and help however I can.
After that I met up with my friend Anna, picked her up(hmm, I’m seeing a trend there) and we went to Falls Park for the Irish Festival. Of course, by this point the Irish festival was really over and they were packing up everything. She bought a nice cheap pair of fake emerald earrings and we walked around the park for a while. She then wanted to go to a coffeeshop she heard about, but they were closed. Then she kind of retreated into herself and asked me to drive her home. After that I came home and watched the dvd of Once I borrowed from her. Wow, what a beautiful film. I am currently downloading the soundtrack(legally, from emusic) and will be acquiring the dvd shortly.
Not the best weekend in the world, but far from the worst.
I’ve been researching projectors for the past month or so and after reading lots of reviews, recommendations, etc I had narrowed my list down to two projectors. One was a ceiling mount(Mitsubishi HD1500) and the other was a tabletop(Epson Moviemate 72). They both have 720p HD displays. The Mitsubishi has slightly better specs, but the Epson is an all-in-one system with an upscaling dvd player and four speakers built in. Since I’m starting from scratch, the all-in-one system is a nice choice since I’ll have everything I need to watch a dvd and then upgrade the sound later.
After getting home monday night, I was pretty pissed off(see Preface to the Projector below) and wanted some retail therapy. The Mitsubishi was up from the price I saw it at Best Buy last week, but the Epson was on sale at Circuit City for $999. I did a quick price search online and found that all the reputable internet sites(Amazon, Vanns, etc) didn’t have it any cheaper than $1200. According to the Circuit City website the Woods Crossing store had the Epson in stock. I checked the time: 8:22. Circuit City closes at 9:00 and I’m 12 miles away. No problem. I speed a little more than I should and pull into the parking lot at 8:47(hit every red light once I got into the city proper). The sales guy in the tv dept is watching a basketball game so I had to flag him down. Fifteen minutes later I’m the new owner of an Epson Moviemate 72 projector.
I still haven’t had time to properly calibrate the settings, but it fits my little apartment perfectly. I get around a 100″ display on my dining room wall. The only problem is that the white wall paint is glossy, so there is a bright spot where the light reflects back. I’m planning on getting a bucket of special home theater wall paint, but that stuff is very expensive so it’s not at the top of my list. Sometime in the next few months.
After spending a few days watching a few favorites(first dvd seen on the projector? The Royal Tenenbaums) I’m extremely pleased with my choice. I even took it to the rollerskating work event (see Ready 2 Rock below) and everyone was impressed with the quality of the image.
Part three of the trifecta will be the receiver(probably an Onkyo 605 or Harman Kardon AV 347) but since I spent my budget for the receiver on stuff for the new place I’ll wait a couple of months. That gives me time to check fatwallet.com and deals2buy.com for a great deal.
Last Monday I hung with a friend who proceeded to really piss me off. She called me at work at 4:30 wanting to drop by where I work and then go hang out. I was fine with that and gave her the dime tour of EP. We wound up at Coffee Underground where she kept talking about how she needed to make friends and spend time with people. After about an hour, she then decided to leave me and go hang out with some random people from a Meetup.com group who were going bowling.
Maybe I’m being oversensitive, but when someone interrupts your day to want to hang out, proceeds to spend an hour talking about she doesn’t have any friends her age(I’m only 1.5 years older than she), and then leaves you behind to go bowling with strangers just seems like a shitty way of treating a friend. It wouldn’t have bothered me so much, but in the conversation we had at CU I started to talk about some of the stuff from my past and I wanted to go into it a little, since she had an hour or so to talk about what was bugging her.
She’s really funny and I like hanging out with her, but it feels like a one-sided friendship. I think she thinks I have a crush on her so she doesn’t want to spend too much time with me. I could see wanting to go out with her in a few years once I get a few things together, but I really don’t have any interest in anyone at the moment. I have been known to get flirty, so maybe she misinterpreted a signal or two?
Oh well. I’m just upset enough after this to not be proactive for a while. If she calls me and wants to do something, fine, but I’m not going to contact her for the next few weeks. I feel like my friendship has been taken for granted, and to be quite honest I have a lot of friends who want to spend time with me, I don’t need to be anyone’s doormat.
I just got home from a company event at a rollerskating rink. Seriously.
It was actually kind of fun. I didn’t strap on rollerskate, though, as I brought my projector and played Rock Band for three hours. We had a pretty nice setup with a white sheet used as a screen(fancy, no?), and a receiver and tower speakers from the 80s that cranked out enough decibels to drown out “Ice Ice Baby” “The Chicken Dance”, and other roller-skating classics.
I’ve been at EP for nearly a year now and this is the first offsite gathering I’ve attended. It was kind of nice to see a different side of some of my coworkers.
I had two highlights of the evening. First, a 14 year old challenged me to a guitar duel(we were both on Expert) and I trounced him. It seems like that age group routinely stomps the 25-35 age range so it was good to draw a little blood for the “starting to get old” guys. The second was when one of the popular ad execs referred to me as “the cool guy in accounting.” Really, what can I do to top that? Maybe be the white guy in Harlem or the fat guy at an anorexia support group?
I like most of my coworkers in the accounting department, but they can be kind of bland. But I find everyone interesting, so it’s not a problem for me.
Here’s the flyer one of our graphic designers made for the event: