Monday, February 26, 2007

Job Hunt, Week Two

It's been two weeks since I was sent home with a box and the few things I had on my desk. I'm not bitter at all, just inconvenienced. Getting back into the job search has made me realize that there is actually more potential out there than what I even realized before.

I've been looking up job postings and sending resumes on a daily basis. It's been mostly to specific types of jobs, as I really want to get back into the software development area. Now that I'm entering week three, I may start blasting my resume out to as many companies that are in a good location and are likely to have positions I could fill. The more resumes that are out there, the more chances at a job, but there's a lot of wasted time as well, as most of them end up in the recycle bin.

In my past experience with job searching, it usually takes a couple of weeks to really get things moving. Companies that look to hire someone can wait for weeks to collect up resumes before making decisions to call. So I'm just moving along at a steady pace, and will be hoping for some calls to come in this week.

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Friday, February 23, 2007

Belated Valentine's Greek Dinner

We missed Valentine's Day this year as Natasha's Mom was visiting, and we were both in various stages of the flu. Not that we had big plans or anything. We think it's rather silly to spend the big bucks for things that are inflated just for the one day, or to fight for a table at a fancy restaurant.

But a nice dinner is always a good thing, and we simply moved it up a week when we had a chance, and we chose a Greek restaurant we've never been to.

Andrew & Natasha at a Greek restaurant

Natasha had the Moussaka, lamb, and some other thing I don't recall the name of. I had lamb chops, marinated chicken breast, and calamari. The food was tasty, and plentiful as it usually is when it comes to Greek food. But there was one funny thing... the lamb chops. Here's one of them...

A lamb chop

... yep, that's it! No more than a mouthful, but then I reasoned... a lamb isn't that big so maybe that's really how big a lamb chop is! It had a little T-bone and everything.


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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Outrageous Parking Prices

I heard a discussion on the radio a while back about the price of street parking in Vancouver and how it was to be raised. People were phoning in and saying how they avoid going downtown for shopping and other activities because of the cost.

Well, I just found out first hand today what's going on. I got to the meter, and discovered it costs one dollar for a mere twelve minutes of time. That's more than four dollars an hour! That's absolutely ridiculous. I guess if you're going to stay there over an hour, you might as well pay $10 in a parkade for a full day rate and take your time.

The thing is, the streets were full of cars. I guess all it does is keep some people away, but those who don't care, or have no choice, will pay whatever it costs.

So be warned, if you're going downtown Vancouver and want to park on the street, bring lots of loonies, even toonies if you've got a few to spare...

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Job Hunt, Week One

It's been just over a week since my job search began. The results so far have been encouraging at least. I had my resume on for at least six months, but just in the last week I've had two people call me after finding my information there. I got a call from a friend who I went to NAIT with as well, and there's a possible job opening where he works. Plus my other contacts who I've sent my resume too, and The Atavist, who is trying to find me work in his neck of the woods!

Thanks to all of you for your efforts, they are much appreciated.

In the meantime, between job searching, I'm taking care of things around the house, and cooking up a storm for supper! Chicken Fajitas today! I guess it's not that great being out of work, but I'm making the best of it while it lasts.

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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Happy 2nd Anniversary, Blog!

Today is two years from my first blog post! Thanks to everyone for keeping up with it and making it as successful as it has been!

On the lower left, you'll find a list of months going back to February 2005. If you click on a link, you will be able to see all of the posts for that particular month.


Saturday, February 17, 2007

Mid-February Updates

It's a sleepy Saturday, not too much going on. We took Natasha's Mom to the airport early this morning. She's been here for three weeks and we've had a great time. We didn't do a lot of traveling, but spent time around here visiting, playing games, etc.

Natasha is recovering nicely from her flu, just a bit of a cough still hanging around (same as me) and some general weakness. With some good rest this weekend, she should be ready for work, and I'll be ready to start looking for work. I did some searching last week but with everything else going on, it was difficult to concentrate.

After the airport this morning, we went downtown to The Bay to find out what could be done about my Trump watch. It's the second one, and the clasp on this one got really loose. I decided after two of the same watch with issues, I was going to ditch it and go with something else. I got a refund and bought a FOSSIL watch. This picture doesn't show it perfectly, but it'll give you an idea:

My new Fossil watch

We also drove past the Vancouver Art Gallery and saw the new Olympic countdown clock they have, counting down to the 2010 Olympic games.

That's about all that's new right now. Thanks for continuing to visit. For those of you who check every day, sorry for the lack of updates. I'll try to get back into the swing of things soon!

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Monday, February 12, 2007

Bad Days, Good Days

Some days are good, some days are bad. Right now I'm waiting for the good days to come again because today was one of the bad ones.

I got up this morning and took transit to work as Natasha and her Mom were going out for a day with the ladies (fancy tea houses and such). When I arrived at the building and saw my manager in her office at 7:45am, and more manager's cars parked than usual, little alarm bells were going off in my head, but I'm still a bit sick and didn't think anything of it. Turns out, the bells were right. The company lost some important investment funding and nearly the entire company had been laid off. I missed that on Friday as I was sick, but found out today.

So, once again it's time to think about where I'm going and what I'm doing. Like the song says "Should I stay or should I go now? If I go there will be trouble. And if I stay there will be double!". There are many options to consider, and you'll probably find out what happens if you keep reading the blog.

The day got worse though. Natasha arrived home in the evening with the same symptoms that I'd had last week, and she's tucked into bed snug as a bug, and I hope she gets over it sooner than I did.

And lastly, my computer's really acting up. I think for the first time since my Amiga 500, I've had a real virus problem and it's affected things I don't think I can fix. I'm going to have to back up my data, re-install Windows, and start from scratch. Not my idea of fun, but a whole lot better than having an unreliable computer.

Things can only get better!

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Thursday, February 08, 2007

Me, Obese?

Great, now I'm part of an "epidemic". I visited a page about health on, and filled out my height and weight, and discovered I'm right on the verge of being considered "obese" (BMI = 30). Guess I shouldn't have those three plates plus dessert at the brunch buffet last weekend!

I don't really care about the term itself, as I feel pretty comfortable with my weight and how I look. I could stand to lose a few pounds definitely, but I don't want to become the skinny guy I was ten years ago (my Adam's Apple is pronounced enough as it is!).

But "obese"? Really, that's unfair, considering the porkers you see every day on the street that I'm considered thin next to.

The winter has been pretty bad as far as exercise goes, but when the weather warms up again, I hope we'll be able to get back into walking, biking, and all of the other summer activities.

I'm interested to know what others think about classification of people into weight related categories, and particularly the labels assigned to them. If you want to check your own, BMI, visit this site and click on 'Calculator: Are you overweight?'.

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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The Domino Effect

During a few random searches on the web, I ran across a YouTube video of an amazing domino / pool table setup.

It reminded me of a game set I had many years ago that had all those small plastic dominos, and various types of tracks, bridges, etc to help you build some really nifty domino paths. I have a set of dominos now with about 150 pieces, and that would work for a small but decent size setup. I'd love to get a couple of thousand and set up a really large and complex one.

Hmm... maybe someday when we get a house and have a nice basement room...

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Friday, February 02, 2007

First Man?

So, the United States is less than two years from having a new President. Who will it be? Hillary Clinton? God forbid. Condoleezza Rice? Better (Although I don't think she's planning to run)! Rudy Giuliani? Now you're talking. I'm sure there are others heading in that direction but I don't know all of them. While it seems unlikely that another serious Republican will get voted in, Rudy is a good guy who leans in that direction but is more middle-of-the-road. He also played a huge part in the emergency response to the 9/11 attacks, and is well looked on for his role there.

As always, it should be interesting and I look forward to watching the ordeal from afar and putting in my two cents wherever I can.


Early February Updates

The first month of 2007 is over and we're moving into the second. Things are going generally pretty well. I've been at my job for three months now. Natasha's been at hers for just over a month. We're back into the daily routine, although getting up at 6am is always a drag.

Last night, Natasha and her Mom went to a baby shower. Sounded like there were a ton of giggling girls, an abundance of food, and enough gifts to sink the Titanic.

I went to Chess club instead, to play a few games and watch the league match. I'm still waiting on the full results, but I don't think our team did as well as they hoped. I did well myself, winning four out of four games against some of the others who aren't part of the league team. Actually, my Chess game has improved drastically over the last month, after taking a massive dive in the last two months of 2006. I had too much going on I think, and I just wasn't concentrating or thinking straight about the games.

The house we're living in is up for sale again. Last time it was quite the ordeal, and in the end the one offer fell through and we were left hanging for a month, not knowing who actually owned the house. Hopefully this time around is better. We really like our landlord, so in some ways we don't want it to sell. But if it's going to sell, it's better to be quick and easy.

That's the update for now!

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Thursday, February 01, 2007

Have You Read My Blog?

Okay, a bit of humour today. I didn't have a computer as a kid (until about grade seven) let alone a blog (didn't have internet 'till high school; our kids aren't going to believe it, but that's another story). But now that I have one, I love posting to it, and want everyone to read it!

Bloggers tend to expect people to keep up with their comings and goings by reading their blog. Nearly everyone I know has my blog address, and a lot more people I don't know, so at times even I just assume people know the latest news about me.

Do you have a blog I don't know about? Give us your address so we can all take a look! Do you enjoy keeping up with me and others via blogs? Leave us a comment with your thoughts.

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