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Posts Tagged ‘work’

Commitment Costs

January 12, 2011 Leave a comment

I’d like to talk a bit about relationships, love, and commitment. But first, I wanna be a bit geeky…

Several years back, I got a phone call from an older relative. He knew that I was good with computers and he hoped that I could help him resolve a problem with his computer over the phone. Apparently, someone else allegedly had downloaded something naughty and/or malicious and it was causing problems. I couldn’t see what he was looking at, and, due to his technical ignorance, he wasn’t able to articulate to me what he was seeing, let alone the actual problem. After several minutes of frustration on both ends of the phone, I was able to walk him through shutting down the computer and then starting it back up. He had no clue what he was doing but I could hear the computer making the shutdown and startup sounds so I know he was pressing the right buttons even if he didn’t. Once the computer was started up again, I knew that there were no other programs running so I had a better idea of what he was looking at. I paused, took a deep breath, and asked again “What do you need me to help you do, exactly?” To this he said – clearly for the first time – “I just need help turning the computer off.” I laughed out loud and then walked him through the first half of the procedure we had just walked through. He informed me that the screen was blank and that the box wasn’t making any more noises, but he wasn’t sure if it was actually off or not. I assured him that it was. He was very grateful for my help.

I share this story just to say that we all have different levels of aptitude and experience when it comes to computers. Some people use computers only when absolutely necessary. Others have developed a sort of relationship with their computers. Countless nerds, myself included, actually name our computers.
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Dance as a House – A Metaphor for Life

November 4, 2010 Leave a comment

Silhouette of DancersEver watched a really good dancer and thought to yourself “I could never do that.”? Or have you ever looked at an exquisite piece of architecture (or a piece of furniture from IKEA) and thought “I could never build that.”?

When I was in the fourth grade my family of five moved in with my grandma, into a two-bedroom house. Naturally, there wasn’t much room for all six of us so plans were made for us to add more rooms onto the house. Due to money constraints the project took nearly two full years to complete. It was a very slow and painful process to say the least. First, our backyard was transformed from a small green orchid to a brownish trash heap. Then one side of our house became like a slice of Swiss cheese. For a long time several walls of our home were made of large thick sheets of clear plastic. We lived in a windy desert, which means extreme temperatures and lots of dirt. Imagine trying to sleep in a 90 or 50 degree room! Also imagine the frustration of perpetual dusting and vacuuming. Not fun. The bright side was that I got to see many of the oft-forgotten elements of a house being put into place. I saw the plumbing, the wiring, the air ducts, and the placement of things like heaters and bathtubs. Our house was not so much a home as much as it was a construction site. It wasn’t until the painting and flooring were complete that it finally began to look and feel like home again. Before that, I and others in my family had numerous moments of “F%$# all this! I’m so done with this stupid house! I don’t even want the extra rooms anymore!”

For the past few weeks I have been taking dance classes. Before moving from California to Texas I had virtually no interest in structured dancing. My second week in town, though, some new friends invited me to go country dancing. I had no clue how to country dance but had nothing better to do so I accepted. I danced exactly one dance and was horrible. That night I mostly just stood and watched as guy after guy walked up to a seemingly random lady, asked her to dance, danced to one song, said thanks, and then repeated the process with a different lady. As I stood on the edge of the dance floor (on the outside looking in, so to speak), I thought to myself “I have to learn how to do that”. Read more…

Categories: Snapshots of Me Tags: , , ,

The Beaver and the Rabbit

April 6, 2009 Leave a comment

A young beaver named Bennie made up in his mind to work hard and to gain many riches and possessions for himself. When he was old enough, Bennie became an employee of a dam building company that greatly admired his work ethic. Bennie worked more than any of the other employees, almost 45 hours per week! He hardly even stopped to rest or eat! About the only thing that Bennie did besides work was shop! When Bennie first left his parents’ home, he had to rent a room in someone else’s house and he could only afford the essentials like bath towels, clothes, shoes, and food. As time wore on, Bennie increased his work time to 50 hours per week and his employer rewarded him with more money. With this, Bennie was able to buy bigger and nicer things like a used motorcycle and a portable music player. Eventually he was even able to move into an apartment of his own. The apartment was very small of course but it was all his. As the years passed, Bennie’s employer decided to make him the Supervisor. This meant a lot more responsibility but also a lot more money. Bennie now had to work 60 hours per week, but he didn’t mind because now he could afford a large apartment, a brand new car, and a wireless phone that could play music and surf the Internet! Bennie didn’t spend all of his money though. He saved a small amount of it each week in a special place. After many years, he had saved enough money to start his own dam building company! He bought all the necessary supplies, hired many employees, and even hired an advertising agency to handle his marketing. As owner of the company, Bennie had a lot of things to do like patrolling construction sites, signing paychecks, and firing unsafe employees. He had so many duties as the owner that he now had to work over 80 hours per week. Since Bennie was a hard worker and was very focused on his company, his company started making lots of money, millions in fact! Bennie became the richest beaver in the whole forest. He bought a ridiculously over-sized seven-bedroom house that included a garage large enough to store his eight cars. He bought the nicest clothes and ate only the best food. He bought a sail boat, a motor home, and a private jet. Bennie had everything he had ever hoped to gain. There was just one thing missing, but Bennie didn’t know what it was. Eventually, Bennie began to grow old and was unable to work as often as he wanted to. That gave him more time to shop and play with his “toys” but he was often too tired for those things too. When Bennie was very old and starting to get sick, he had to stop working and sell his company to another beaver. By this time, he just didn’t have enough energy to enjoy any of the things he had bought for himself. Nor did he have the energy, or even the desire, to buy more stuff. Bennie spent most of his last days and nights alone in his huge house staring at his huge television while lying in his huge bed. When he had reached a certain age, Bennie died. Since he had no wife or children, Bennie’s home and all of his possessions were given to his nieces and nephews and their children. Sadly, Bennie didn’t know any of these relatives because he had spent most of his life working. On the day of his funeral, not one animal came to attend. Read more…