New Job

I started my new job yesterday.

I don't want to talk too much about it and get myself fired like any other number of individuals, so I'll lay down some imperical facts that can be viewed objectively with no room for interpretation and then we'll just call it a day.

My new position is with Texas Medical Association. TMA is the largest state medical association in the country. It provides networking tools, software, conference room and support, documentation and resource database access to medical professionals across the state. It's 150 years old. You can read more about it here.

As far as what I do, technically my title is Network Administrator. I don't have too much networking experience, so I believe the title is a misnomer. My duties at the start seem to be backing up the file server onto high density tape. I've only been here a day and that's pretty much the only solid thing I've been able to gleen from the tours and meet and greets. I'm sure as days go by I will settle into my role. From what I can tell in talking to my new boss, I'll be doing some documentation about the processes and procedures involved in troubleshooting and managing projects. I'm sure I'll also be involved in sundowning some old servers, setting up new servers, etc. I'm hoping to get some network training, even if it is "as needed."

There are some things about the job that are not as good as I'd hoped. The health insurance is quite pricey and I'll probably end up opting for paying for my own. I won't give numbers, but it's about 4x what I was paying (or having deducted) from Zone. Add that to an already 1/3 paycut.

But the people so far are cordial. They've all worked for TMA for a very long time. The facilities are modern if not cutting edge. Stability doesn't seem to be a problem.

And that's all I'm gonna say, I've said too much.

Lil Miss Austin continues to be, and forgive my bluntness, a pain in the ass. I tried thinking of a different way to spin it, but I just can't. She's just at this age (you know the one, between 3 and 24) where she's testing her boundaries and pushing our buttons and trying to get her way at all costs. Even with the very real threat of corporal punishment, she will continue to push and push and push her agenda until the whole opperation has crumpled into a raw screaming mass of exposed nerves and empty beer bottles.

Mrs. A and I are really lucky to have each other during times like this. I can not imagine being a single parent with a little kid like this. I know this is normal and I'm getting plenty of feedback and advice on how to deal with her; the majority of which is "just ignore her."

You know how hard it is to ignore a screaming four year old?

So Yogi's been a handful too, but not because of any psychological envelopes he's been pushing. The poor dude just can't get a break medically. It's earaches or breathing problems or diaper rash that hurts me just to look at it. He's got a few words and proto-sentences down pretty well. "All done." "More please." He can sign for a few things like milk, cheese, water. He says please and bird and shoe. He's such a cute kid and lately such a good crier.

Mrs. A has stayed home with the kids a lot lately due to either illness or school holidays and she can attest to how much the word "mommy" has been used as punctuation, salutation, exclamation and dissertation. Yogi can use it as a verb, adjective and noun all at once. He even calls me "mommy," which doesn't get him too many favors.

We love our kids. They are just kids. I have to remember that. Before I know what happened, they will be teenagers and there'll be a whole 'nother set of problems to deal with that will make these days seem memorable and magic by comparison.

With the job and the kids and the holidays I've really let slide a lot of things and I'm sad about that. I haven't the slightest idea what's going on the world politically, I haven't been active on my comic book message board (a place I once called my second home) and I haven't been trying to expand my own horizons with learned reading or self-tutoring. I've completely dropped trying to learn Mandarin. There's a project on Penciljack I haven't taken part of in months. I haven't started my comic's second issue. It seems like all I've been doing is spending the day not at home doing vague representations of working, then coming home and either being exhausted for no damn reason or trying to help Mrs. A keep the house in order and the children from catching fire before passing out around midnight.

I honeslty have no idea what I'm doing with my time the last couple months, but it hasn't been what I've wanted to do. However, I can't account for what I've done in that time either. I've lettered two comics, that's it. It seems like I should have more done. With the way Mrs. A and I argue sometimes, I'm not apparently doing my share during the evenings, but I've also had nearly three weeks off in the past month. Haven't seen any movies, haven't gone out to dinner. It hasn't been all bad, I haven done some comic related stuff, spent a lot of time with Mrs. A and we did get to go to San Angelo to see her grandma. It hasn't been a total waste or a waste of any kind. It just seems like I had so much time and I was not productive in the things that mattered to me, to my family, etc.

I think I'm hitting the time crunch days. I'm pretty sure soon I will wondering why my kids are driving and when they'll becoming home from college to visit and how old my grandkids are now. We measured LMA yesterday and she's 3'6". She can see over the countertops now.


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