seventhe: (Cock: GIANT COCKFISTING)
Yesterday's post is a great example of the trash show that is my life. I started with a great idea and plan, had half the thing written in my head, wanted to get all these great project & hobby ideas out. Then: Came home exhausted, had a bit too much wine, a bit too little sleep, tried to write it while having text chats and watching Netflix, and.... got about 25% of my ideas out then trailed off at the end when I fell asleep on the couch.

I'm a horrible garbage dump of execution. XD

This week I've been helping with some interviews at work - one of the fellow managers wants to bring in a summer intern to work in the labs, and since he's a very new manager HR asked me to help sit in as someone familiar with interviewing (oh god am I familiar with interviewing). Interviewing interns is an interesting experience -- they're so young!!! Our HR guy had to - casually AND NOT formally, kind of as a joke - remind me to not be my usual self (I am pretty tough in interviews) and instead I totally aged/embarrassed myself at the first one by asking whether she was in the new Chem-E building at UAkron. Turns out she's too young to remember the old building. There is no old building. She's a sophomore. Just shoot me now, hide me under a rock, I'm done. *SHAKES CANE*

Anyway. It's hard to be rough on them because they're literally tiny bb students and I was quite welcoming and generous in the interviews themselves - if nothing else it's helping them get experience - but some of them really just committed some of my "favorite" ... interview or resume no-nos and I had to stop myself really hard from turning an interview into a coaching session. (Example: one had work experience listed on his resume in long periods of time to represent the whole period he had worked that job, when it was in fact a part-time job he had worked in small increments. Listing it that way with no other information makes it look like you're trying to pass it off as a fulltime continuous employment, which it isn't, and even if it was an honest mistake rather than being malicious it then makes your resume confusing which is the last thing you want your resume to be! And that's just one. There was some hard-core "selling" on the resumes which could have just been word fodder for itty bbs with no real experience, but I still think there are far more valuable ways to use that real estate.)

It did get me thinking though. I have 11 years of hiring experience at this point and while I don't need any extra work in my life I do enjoy -- giving advice, coaching, that kind of thing. (Teaching, I guess, but on a small scale - I don't have the necessary give-a-fucks about general humanity to survive as a teacher. That job would defeat me.) I've been asked by Case before to be a part of panels for hiring, interviewing, etc. It may be something I want to get more involved in - set up some networking and see if I can start becoming a real resource. I like feeling like I'm helping young kids get jobs - especially if I could focus on ladies in STEM, not because other ladies/gents/others aren't deserving of help, but because that's where my experience is and where I could really shine.

I don't (yet) give back to my college as an alumni, mainly because I have mixed feelings about that whole system, but this would be a way of paying it back / forward that I would be happy to do.

See, tonight I can easily wrap this post up, because I took a 2-hour nap after work and have only had one glass of wine. :D
seventhe: (FFEX: Doink!)


HEY Y'ALL! DOINK! Final Fantasy Exchange 2013 is open!

It's been a hell of a couple weeks getting everything to this point (especially because I have excellent timing - sure, ACCIDENTALLY A HOUSE right as we are frantically getting all of our cats in a row to launch, clearly I am a professional!), but here we are! And this will mark the first round in years where all three mods are able and excited to participate -- that's awesome.

I pretty much welcome everybody who can to participate -- there are some new rules we're using on a trial period this year, just FYI -- DOINK time is one of my favorite fannish times of the year and I'd love for as many people to play as possible.

If you can't do the exchange bits - schedule, demand, etc - I also beg you to consider joining our pinch hit team. I honestly don't have the language to tell you how important our pinch hitters are to us every year -- so if exchanges aren't your thing, but you want to do something, that's an awesome way to help us out.

 


 


Every year I want to talk about the exchange more than I do; I'm a mod, and that means there's a weird line between stuff that I can talk about publicly and stuff I can't. This year has been no different; it turns out no matter how much discussion and communication and work you put into a thing, no matter how much effort you spend trying to be fair and decent to everyone involved, there will be people who think you are doing it wrong: strongly, vocally, happily. There will be people who blatantly disregard the spirit of the exchange so that they can do things the way that they want to, to get what they want. There are people who aren't malicious, but just lazy; there are people who don't care as much as we might think they should.

There were many years of this exchange where the mod team worked incredibly hard to make things fair for our participants -- forgetting (or not really forgetting; deliberately overlooking, maybe; making the choice to not prioritize) that we, too, are involved in this exchange, and the policies we choose need to be fair not only to our participants, but to us as well. There were many years of 3am email chains and desperate chats; years we endangered our sleep and health and our jobs to get things going because we had failed to consider ourselves as parts of our own exchange. "Fair and decent to everyone involved" has to also include the mod team - or the exchange becomes a miserable exhausting experience, and that means we fall short of our responsibilities to the fandom for offering it in the first place. Everyone loses!

But this is our exchange: I won't say we 'own' it, because we're doing it for fandom, not for us; but finally after years and years of doing this we're managing to strike a balance between making it awesome for others and decent for us as mods. I'm very proud of us for doing so; running an exchange this expansive, this diverse, with the amount of by-hand care that we take with everything - our matching is all done by hand with the help of some spreadsheet wizardry; all our assignments and communications and comment replies are done by us - is a lot of work, and I'm so very proud (and, selfishly, relieved) that we've come to a point where we can balance our own strengths and schedules and limitations with the way the exchange runs. Because every year when we gave it our all, there were still people who weren't happy -- this way we can make just as many people happy (if not happier!) and still save a little for ourselves.

This long rambling note isn't to call out any participants, though, or to complain about everyone. My point here is really to just re-announce, pretty blatantly, how much I absolutely adore my co-mods [personal profile] renay and [personal profile] justira and how much I love running DOINK!. It's hard as hell to get this started every year - I am not sure I could name two other friends with whom I would have as absolutely opposite of schedule/availability as I do with them *g* - but I am really glad we're all still working together and I'm excited as fireworks for this year. ♥

Anyway. Go play!

seventhe: (Rosa: pray)
  • in 10 days I get the keys to my house. I am sort of in disbelief-land still.

  • talked to the dr about my neck on Thursday. Turns out the news is better than I'd thought; the dr said that any kind of improvement is a good sign (I had been evaluating a 50%-75% improvement as "not 100% and therefore failure"; he said that 50%-75% is actually very promising), that he wants me to have a series of three shots with additional focused PT following the second shot, that whatever activity I can give it without pain will be good for it, and that he also wants me to stay on the painkillers until it is 100%.
    So the forward plan right now becomes using gentle exercise to remind my neck/shoulders/back what it's like to not be all fucked up, then to have another shot ~end of March/early Apr and a third ~end of Apr. He seems really hopeful that since it did respond to the first shot that subsequent ones will be even better. I'm trying to take hope from his optimism.

  • I'm very happy to have been "cleared" to get back to working out, and am trying really hard to take it slow and gentle rather than just diving right in (and probably hurting myself again because my body is a jackass). I've been feeling very broken and lumpy lately - a very complex and complicated feeling, but generally not a good one - and I think this will help.

  • meetings this week with the Japanese Overlords. I have my project review this morning; at the advice of a few of the managers I've added a slide pretty boldly and blatantly requesting the targets and direction we still lack in two main areas; I am not sure how this will go over. send help

  • I've been playing FFIII. For now - until I make an official post - you can watch me here on tumblr. Basically this game:

    Yup.

  • I still really want to write.

  • DOINK! Final Fantasy Exchange 2013 is coming up. That's right, stay tuned for your yearly dose of "Sev has officially lost it". Timing this round: impeccable; sign-ups open the day I get the keys. clearly I am a professional

  • what else do I even do anymore?

seventhe: (Cats: I LIKE THEM)
Cities/States I was in: 9/8 (Akron, OH --> Denver, CO --> Boise, ID --> Las Vegas, NV --> Tusayan (Grand Canyon), AZ --> Las Vegas, NV --> Phoenix, AZ --> Houston, TX --> Lake Charles, LA --> Houston, TX --> Detroit, MI --> Akron, OH)
Different time zones I inhabited: 4
Flights: 7
Drives: 4

In a 14-day period:
- Longest time period in any one time zone: 3 days
- Days on this trip I had to be up at 4 am: 3 (ugh)
- Days I actually got to sleep in: 1
- Days spent hermiting in a hotel room during which I spoke to no one except the Chinese food delivery person: 1
- Days that were technically vacation that I checked my email and worked: 5/7

Suitcase weight: 50 lb
Specific styles of dress contained in suitcase: 6 (formal dress for wedding; casual nice for rehearsal dinner; casual and hot for Vegas; hiking clothes for Grand Canyon; one business casual for plant visit; working casual for plant days)
Computing power brought: 3 pieces (laptop for work; iPad for DOINK; iPhone)

- - -

I won't call it a vacation. I'll call it a trip. It was fun, but it wasn't relaxing. But it was fun. The wedding was gorgeous, Vegas was fun, the Grand Canyon was amazing, and the week of work blew ass like I expected. XD

Maybe I'll put up some photos or something.

I am terrified to go to work tomorrow. Even though I've been checking my email and following work, I know I'm still behind because I haven't been in the office for two weeks. And the biannual meeting with the Japanese Overlords starts Thursday. UGHHHHHHHHHHHH

No wonder I've been playing so much FFXIII. I am in hiding mode.
seventhe: (Default)
[personal profile] novel_machinist is trying to pull together some resources to help younger graduates feel better about finding jobs and more confident about the things that they do! This is a(n) small LOL RIGHT essay I've pulled together to help share my own experiences with interviewing and hiring. I hope it helps someone!

The information here is a lot about me and my experiences. I come across as a really grumpy asshole. But guess what! That's who is interviewing you. I don't come to work to make BFFs, I come to get shit done. I recruit in the same way. Lots of other people do too. Here's the list of ~secret~ things we're really looking for, and how you can make even a grumpy buttface like me want to bring you into my company. SPOILER: They're not so secret.

Some Information On Interviewing From The Other Side Of The Table, or: What Too Much Of Sev's Job Has Become and How You Can Hopefully Make My Life Easier When I'm Hiring. )

All of this advice can be boiled down to the following: We want to hire someone who wants to be hired by us for this specific job. We are not looking for people who want "a job", "any job". We're a puzzle piece looking for a piece that fits well, that improves us, not just any piece that's close enough. Your job is to use the interview time to determine whether or not you are a good fit, and if you are, to show me why you're the best puzzle piece out there. Because there are a lot of other puzzle pieces very similar to you, and if I don't see that tiny two-pixel difference between you and the last person I spoke to, I may throw you both into the "meh" pile.

I win at analogies forever.

Enjoy. And good luck. And if you have questions, or you want to hear the horror stories, just ask.



...Also I pick on Taco Bell a lot in this and I want to make it perfectly clear that it's just an example and I love me some shameful 3:30am TBell just like every other engineer in the world.
seventhe: (Default)
Well, last night's exam actually went well. I am sure those of you who have been following this journal have been waiting for me to say those words for something like eighteen years now, after semester upon semester of "I fail!" and "School sucks!" and "Wow, Polymer Science makes me want to shoot myself in the foot and the face."

It's amazing to me how much more comfortable I am with Chemical Engineering, even going on 5 years after my undergrad degree (*waves "old" flag*), especially comparing with Polymer Science: the professors are still quirky moronic asshats, but I understand them and the assignments and the material so much better. I feel like I'm learning again; Polymer Science so far has been a few safe islands of actual learning in a sea of memorization and half-assed faking my way through exams (and angry nasty emails to professors and being blacklisted and having to fight my way tooth and claw through their part-timer prejudice). This has just been a single chem.-E class, but it's already better than the 10 PolySci classes I have under my belt.

Although - I do feel like I'm better at my job with more polymer-based knowledge, so I do not think it was a waste.

I think I'm just a natural engineer.

Either that, or one department is just nicer than the other. ;)

It throws the future into an interesting light. Do I cram next semester and actually finish all my classwork by May 2010? I don't think you guys understand how tempting that sentence really is to me. I have been at this since 2007. It would be nice to be done. And after that, what? My (future husband) boss still wants me to go for a Ph.D. I am more tempted now that I've felt the joy of homecoming in the chemical engineering department. Do I go back to Chem-E? Do I go back at all?

It has been an interesting month or so here in SevLand. I feel like – it feels like I've been treading water, running in place, fighting my ass off just to stay where I am and survive. It isn't just school, and it isn't just work – it's life: an overwhelming feeling of drudgery, of being stuck in one place, of stagnation, of is this really what I want? and is this really where I want to be?

But in the past little bit it's like something has… started isn't the right word: changed. Something's moving; the earth is shaking, the water's starting to flow. Analogies fail me, but maybe it's just a realization that things don't ever have to be any particular way; choices are everywhere. Funny how I give this advice to lots of people and yet don't realize it myself: isn't that what life is all about. Clearly I am a professional! AT MY OWN LIFE.

I wrote something a little while ago about dream-chasing, and me, and I didn't post it because it felt too much like a flagging of my own privilege: look at me, with a stable job and income and life, complaining about not having dreams of all things as if that even matters beyond some cosmic bullshittery. But I watch friends of mine talk about their dreams and goals and go after them like fucking champions, and it made me realize that right now I don't have dreams, I don't have goals, all I have is the steady even keel of a stabilized life. Except grad school, yes, but I don't even want this degree for any noble reason, I want it so that I can continue to work in research for the rest of my life, so that I can get myself up to the pay-scale and respect-level that I deserve for the job I do but am not given because of the lack of a single piece of paper; it's not really a dream anymore, not after all of the blood and sweat and tears (I have cried more over school than over anything else in my life, including men and pets) and angst and agony and asshattery. I had lots of things I wanted to do once upon a time but somewhere in the house payments and the grocery shopping and the homework they can get lost.

I'd said, I'm not sure if this is a good thing, because it means I have realized all my dreams already; or a bad thing, because my dreams were so little and pithy as to be easily attainable; or a very bad thing, because I didn't really have any dreams at all.

In conclusion:
  1. Apparently one good test makes you introspective, insightful, and hella whiny/emo

  2. I bit my tongue really badly on Tuesday while eating a carrot and now there is a numb nub on the tip of my tongue that tastes like mint. Did I fuck up a taste bud or something? We're talking bad, like there was blood everywhere and I had to go hide in the bathroom bad (I am such a hobo)

  3. I've already skipped a day of Daily Photo. Name something I have to take a photo of as punishment!

NaNo

Oct. 26th, 2009 11:27 am
seventhe: (Default)
NaNoWriMo starts on Sunday. 50,000 words in November.

I am seventhe on the NaNo website, btw, so feel free to friend me if you want cheering, but I'm not really doing official NaNo this year.

Why not? How to put this simply. I'm losing 10/30 days in November for my brother's wedding, reception, and my personal vacation in-between the two. And that's the most optimistic estimate – not taking into account packing/preparing for said trip, recovery time from said trip, the final I have right after said trip, or anything involving Thanksgiving. Since the more realistic estimate leaves me about 50% of November to work with, I'll be frank: NaNo is not happening for me this year.

I'm going to participate in the way I usually do, since Novembers are busy months for my personal life – writing what I can, inputting it into the website, and cheering on my friends who have a much better chance of making 50K.

I'll be using the NaNo fervor to spur myself on into writing whatever words I can, because I'm still close enough to being on-track with [community profile] getyourwordsout that I can make 200K by the end of this year as long as I stay on track. So that's my goal! Stay on track, self.

It's sad because there are so many things I want to write right now! My brains are frazzled and fried from le wedding, and from school, and from work, which makes even basic sub-dire life feel frazzling and frying. And yet the ideas keep coming! And I get excited about them! But then I get more frazzled! CLEARLY I AM A PROFESSIONAL.

And then I post about writing and being frazzled rather than doing anything productive. DON'T MIND ME.

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