Friday, October 27, 2006

Deja Vu Update & Photo Boom

Well he finally saw the light and made the changes I requested to my contract. I still don't know why I am doing it but I guess it's a few bucks in my pocket. Also I may be going out to San Francisco, for a couple of days if he decides to have me train my replacement in person. Which in my opinion would probably be most effective and helpful for her.

On other fronts - the husband's photography business has been booming in the last couple of weeks. On a lark a few weeks ago I saved a local newspaper that has a sports section for the husband. I thought maybe he could shoot for them once in a while like he did for the Examiner and Independant newspapers in the San Francisco area. Well in the past week he has been out on 4 shoots and has more scheduled. If this keeps up, I'll never see him! But he is having fun and he loves his photography. Who am I to stop a hobby that actually makes us some extra money in the process?!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Deja Vu

Because I must be a glutton for punishment I suppose, I offered to train my Operations replacement at my former employer. Becasue I don't want the organization to set her up to fail and becasue I don't want all my hard work to go down the tubes.

Sigh - why I care I can't explain. I guess I just love torture or something.

So my old boss presented a contract to me that didn't provide any contract guidelines asside from stating the fact that I would be a contractor, not an employee, and that I would be responsible for taxes for any pay I would receive.

If couse I wanted a more comprehensive contract and provided comments for changes to my former boss. The next thing I know I receive a contract via mail requesting my signature (not another draft that I had requested). I of course wanted to see a final draft before the paper one was mailed to me.

In the presented contract a whole new paragraph was inserted, to which I had not agreed might I add, stating that I would be "on call" for any emergency Operational issues as the arrise! Hello - if I agreed to that I would have to be glued to my phone and computer everyday during San Francisco business hours (12pm-8pm in my current time zone)!

This is simply not acceptable! Does he want me to train her or does he really want me to keep solving the organization's operational issues even though I am not there?!

Obviously I didn't sign the contract - I really hope my old boss can see reason not only so that the organization can provide a comprehensive training for my replacement and not set her up to fail but also becasue I would hate to burn a bridge with the organization. I truly believe in what I helped to build there.

Damn idealism!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

My Second Date with James Blunt

Well to be completely honest the date was really with the husband at a James Blunt concert - but a girl can dream right! My absolutely wonderful husband took off work for the afternoon yesterday and this morning to drive me from Columbus, OH all the way to Cleveland, OH (about 3 hours) just to see James Blunt! We even stayed overnight at the Wyndham Hotel in Playhouse Square, making it very convenient to go to the concert. Logoann thought it was a waste to see him in concert again only on a different leg of the same tour (I saw JB in concert at the Warfield in San Francisco this past April. Check out the April, 2006 archive of my blog to see pics from the SF concert as well.)- but you can NEVER get enough James Blunt as far as I am concerned.

The concert was at the State Theater at Cleveland's Playhouse Square downtown. Boy the culture shock from San Francisco to Cleveland was almost indescribable but that is for another blog entry. The venue was great but not as intimate as the Warfield.

Opening for JB was Starsailor, who was pretty good. Unfortunately when they took the stage, no one was manning the sound board, so the house music wasn't turned off until Starsailor's second song and no one could hear a word the lead singer was saying on the mic until it was fixed.

Luckily all was fixed by the time James was ready to play. At first I was a little baffled by the stage set up for JB - there was only a keyboard and a couple of mics. I was getting prepared for the cheaper version of the concert with prerecorded tracks but I soon realized I would not be disappointed and that the regular band set up was just behind the curtain.

"Star" is "Annie", "Girlfriend" is the Supertramp cover, "Breakfast In America".

There were of course new sets, visual effects, and lighting for the show which started out looking like the inside of a circus "big top" tent. There were a few new songs as well in addition to the regular tracks from the Back to Bedlam album, and the few cover songs. I counted at least 3 new songs the first I thought was called Star, but I have since found out is really titled Annie, which reminded me of JB's former girlfriend before Petra. The second new song was When I Can't Hear the Music, which in some parts reminded me of a song I heard JB sing before by a different name, so maybe it was a reworked song. The last new song was 1973. There was also a cover of a Supertramp song, Breakfast In America which I had never heard JB perform. I especially liked the new songs because the audience can't sing along and you could actually get to hear JB better.

The band was of course in great form as always and JB even at one point jumped off the stage into the crowd causing quite a commotion! I thought that the venue made them sound a bit less edgy then they had sounded at the Warfield in San Francisco but it also could have been because our seats were located under the lip of the balcony.

There was also a noticeably different type of crowd in Cleveland than in San Francisco. I was surprised at how many older audience members and young children were present. Also of course there was no aroma of weed that was present at the San Francisco concert.

The crowd was really worked up by the end of the concert! I think that they would have stayed longer if the band had only kept playing - but I imagine that they were all very tired from performing and they had a long bus overnight bus ride to Detroit to look forward to!

The husband was of course again my official James Blunt photographer - did I mention how wonderful the husband was by the way!

Here is a sneak peek of the pics and a link to all of my concert pics from last night. Enjoy!

James Blunt in Concert
State Theater in Cleveland, OH
October 18, 2006

More pics from the 10/18/06 James Blunt Concert at Playhouse Square in Cleveland, OH!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Sump Pump Insanity

There is nothing like finding water in the basement of your brand new home! When we moved in the backup sump pump alarm was activated. So after dealing with the insurance company, who sent out a repair tech, they replaced the main sump pump. Not even a week later during a thunderstorm the backup sump pump arm goes off . . .again.

So we go through the whole process all over again with the insurance company. But this time we find out that there is a hole in one of the sump pump pipes that was spraying water out of the pit and then the water is only circulating in the pit and not being pumped out. Solution - new check valve for the backup pump. Hopefully the alarm won't go off again!

Ahh the pleasures of home ownership - priceless!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

We Made It!

Sorry for not posting sooner but setting up house is taking longer than I had anticiapted. So we have slid from PHASE 4 of unloading the truck on Saturday Sept. 23 and have kind of gotten stuck in PHASE 5 unpacking the boxes. In reality only the kitchen is totally done, which is good - at least we can feed ourselves! The next priority was setting up the husband's office, so he could get down to work.

However the thing that has kept me from blogging at least that first week was the fact that we didn't even have any cable or internet access for about 10 days after we moved in.

It is completely amazing how many house projects creep up on you even when you move into a so called "move-in ready" house. I am convinced that the husband will run away from home of I even mention another trip to Lowes or Home Depot! So far on the homefront we have had to replace our sump pump, re-key the locks, have a brand new cable line installed (we are still waiting for them to come and burry the line in the backyard), moved the cable line in the living room, new phone line, switched over all the utilities, fixed the water lines to the dishwasher and the fridge, changed a light fixture, installed a dimmer switch, put up vertical blinds for the patio door, build new furniture . . .it feels like the list will never end! But I am sure we will get through it all.

The kitty has been the ultimate trooper during this whole move! She hid for a couple of hours in the new house but has totally taken charge of household security rounds and has found every room in the house where she can lay in a patch of sunshine.

By far I think my biggest transition has to be my career change. I have been so busy around the house that I have rarely been on the computer at all some days. A very big change for me since I was on the computer for almost 8-12 hours each day while I was working in the office and then after work as well. It's been very different working Operations in my house rather than for an office full of staff members. Sometimes I think the office was easier but I do enjoy working for myself much much more. It feels very rewarding. We'll see how this transition goes - I hope the culture shock doesn't last too long!