Friday, September 29, 2006

What's Going On?

Well, it's been a while since I posted in here - man, things have gotten ridiculously hectic. Soccer season is in full swing - Big Kid is doing great with his Rec team (they are killing everybody, which is making a couple of mostly-Hispanic teams very unhappy :) ), but Little Kid's teams are kind of hit and miss. They beat the pants off of a team that slaughtered them last year, much to that coach's surprise. Other teams, it just seems kind of random what results we get. Out of some of the new players this year, we have a few ball hogs; they have excellent skills, but they won't pass the ball to save their lives. Part of the problem is that they are Hispanic, and their dads coach from the sidelines, and that is just their style of play - if you have the ball, regardless of your position, you are supposed to take it all the way. These parents just haven't made the connection that that is not what Academy/Select is all about - it's a TEAM of Hotdogs, not individual Hotdogs, so if they can't play as a team, they aren't going to advance to Select successfully. And now the rumor mill is overflowing with stories that none of them are coming back for Spring; whatever. If DH doesn't feel like releasing them, they can't play anywhere else, and they are still obligated to the financial commitment for the season, so they might as well show up and learn to play correctly.

Another issue DH is having is with our DOC. He is much involved with the Academy teams, as the DOC should be, but his ideas and DH's do not match, at all. There is no strategy being taught by the DOC - okay, they don't need a lot at this point, but all the skills in the world mean nothing if you don't know what to do with them on the field. And DH and the others will work on stuff at practice during the week, then the DOC will show up around game time, and pretty much just take over, which equates to "Never mind all that crap the coach just said, this is what I want you to do...", which 98% of the time has nothing to do with what they worked on at practice. It is pretty frustrating for DH - is he the Coach, or is he a babysitter who isn't being paid? But at least we are seeing where some of the problems with Big Kid's Select team came from, and why our club can't compete with these other, bigger clubs; our DOC just doesn't go about it the same way, so none of his hand-picked coaches do, either. I understand his goal - he wants to "teach" the game, but when all of the clubs in the state, and likely the country, are in the Win WIn Win mode, we obviously need to do something different. Teach, yes, but maybe a more rounded approach, to include strategy and shape? Just a thought....

On the work front, it has gotten totally insane. A girl from our MD office left to get a job closer to home - 1 1/2 hours in the car each way is too much - so I have picked up part of her duties. She was a Buyer, and after we had a couple of people leave here, she got stuck with the RMA/Vendor Repair process. I am picking up the RMA part, and since it is purchasing-related, it is totally foreign to anything I have done so far in all my years in manufacturing. The data-entry bit is the easy part; it's the knowing who has what when & where and what part of the process are we in right this minute with a particular piece that's kinda hard to follow. And the fact that I had to be "trained" via phone, when a specific question or process needed to be gone over, it was just that, no "here, look at this, just in case you need to know it" or any of that. SO I learned the basics, and will just have to wing the rest. I have discovered a few things, one of them being that a lot of people are doing a lot of unnecessary work; the girl who handles the receiving wanted to fax me 70 pages FROM THE OTHER BUILDING! I almost laughed right out loud, but then said, "Um, no, I really don't want to hear people bitch when the stupid fax runs out of toner. Put them somewhere specific, and I'll take a minute and walk over and get them." And the truth of the matter is, she wanted to spend 45 minutes standing in front of the fax machine doing nothing. Uh, I don't think so. It probably makes me unpopular to be calling people out already, but if somebody is doing something stupid, I'm not going to go along with it just to make people happy; we are going to do it my way, eventually, because I am a firm believer in never having to touch anything more than absolutely necessary - call me lazy that way. I also came to find out that there are spreadsheets flying around all the time, instead of someone getting off their ass and putting a MASTER in one place that all people who care have access to; that'll be fixed in pretty short order. And people spend a great deal of time rearranging the same data to fit on various spreadsheets; um, no, here's the format that has all the info - it might be more than some folks need, so IGNORE WHAT YOU DON'T NEED. I am not spending minutes, hours cutting/pasting columns. I already had a job, you know. Of course, the boss's boss, who decided I was the one, thinks this is a 5-6 hours-a-week venture, when in reality, it's 30-35 hours a week. Well, I'll get it whittled down as far as possible, as soon as I understand it all, but it's going to take some time. Job security, I guess, though I was actually feeling pretty secure before, and now I know I'm stepping on toes. I guess it depends on if I was given it so I could whittle it down; I'll probably never know. Whatever - so long as it is reflected in my next review, it's all good.

On the hobby front, I've been stitching here and there - I kinda stalled on my Long Dog, when I got to within the last 1/4 of it; I'll finish it soon, but now I'm working on a couple of small secret projects, which could turn into 4, if I feel like it when I get done with the two I am doing now. And I have the coolest bead project going right now; I got some big honking chunks of turquoise, and I am putting them together with freshwater pearls; it's going to be huge!!! Cass will hate it - it's big and showy, but it is definitely me. My only problem is, I'm having trouble finding a suitable clasp. It needs to be pretty heavy-duty, as this is going to be heavy, but I definitely don't want it to be heavy itself - the focus is the turquoise chunks, not the clasp. I have picked out a simple silver s-hook, from my supplier - a girl in my bulk-buy group may place a silver order this coming week, so if she'll add this in, that'll save me a couple of $$ than me ordering just this myself. Bad thing is, I have nothing to wear it with, yet. I really need to invest in some fall/winter things that aren't sweaters and don't have button-up fronts. I actually need a couple of blazers of some sort, with jewel-neck shirts underneath, but since I haven't gotten the boys outfitted for winter yet, my clothing needs are not even up for consideration at this time.

Well, that's the news that's fit to print, and some other crap. Back to the fun, I guess. Later.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

RockStar & a Driving Lesson

Dearest Tommy, Gilby, and Jason,
If you fellows from Supernova choose Lukas Rossi as your singer, I will no longer spend my hard-earned money on any of your CDs. He looks like a cartoon chicken with eyebrows, and about the only music his voice is suited for is anything by The Smashing Pumpkins, and I can pretty much live my life never hearing them again. Any of the remaining choices I think would be great, Magni or Toby equally good. Please choose wisely, gentlemen. And for whichever ones of the last 5, excluding Lukas, that you do not choose, please do your very best to help hook them up with a deal - I would very much like to hear more of them! Oh, and a picture of Dave without clothing on the website would be much appreciated - that, I would pay for!


Okay, on to new business. Or it might be old business, depending on how you look at it...

Dear Asshat in the stupid Aztek with the broken-off gas cap cover,
It is considered good form to actually look at the traffic you are trying to merge into, even if only by using your mirrors. To acknowledge the presence of those with the right-of-way is not only polite, but it just makes sense! And going 30 miles an hour faster or slower than the traffic that has right-of-way does not entitle you to special consideration when merging into said RoW traffic. Oh, and you could give that blinker a workout - it's looking a little neglected!
I am sure that you will give this matter your full attention, after you finish your phone call, of course! If you don't have time to get to it soon, you might want to consider installing a "How Am I Driving" sticker with your cell number on it, on your rear bumper somewhere, unless, of course, you plan on ripping that off on something, too! Thanks in advance!!

Somebody asked me today if I was in a bad mood; not really, I am just being very verbal today, I think. For some reason, many people that don't know me very well equate my verbal days with bad mood days, when in reality, it's usually the reverse. I guess I need to post a sign....

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

We'll Miss You, Crocodile Hunter

Our entire family was saddened to hear of the death of the Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin. My younger son was raised on his shows; when he was only a year or so old, the whole house would stop when the Crocodile Hunter came on TV, and Little Kid would not move until a commercial came on.

Steve Irwin's enthusiasm for wildlife was contagious, and he will never be replaced. He was a little over the top at times, but only because, I really believe, it's the way he really felt. I hope Terri and his children continue on; Bindi seems to already have that intuitive feel for wildlife like her dad, so hopefully someday, we'll see her making shows for our kids' kids. Our thoughts are with you, Irwin family.

Oh, somebody please double up on the safeguards around Jeff Corwin, too, okay???