Techies can be different kind of people, especially when you get them together. I am at a conference with more than 25,000 of them so I thought I would share just a few things I have heard that you might not hear anywhere else.
- There are a lot less booth bunnies this year, last year I couldn’t find a tech guy to answer any of my questions.
- When this show was in Las Vegas people were not even awake this early. (it was eleven in the morning)
- This year’s backpack is better than two years ago, that one was just a backpack. (Different than the backpack we just got?)
- I would be proud to wrap that around a pole! (Heard at the booth of a company giving away a McLaren sports car)
- Were did all these women come from? I didn’t this many all week. (Heard at the evening party and concert)
You would think that athletes who get to the highest level of their respective sports would have to be smart on some level. I know it takes a lot of talent but, all the memory skills and logistics of being a professional, would seem to require at least a higher than a tadpole level of smarts. That is until I read the sports section of the paper and see multimillion-dollar idiots. Drug abuse, domestic violence among other violation comes up time and time again. These franchises are paying these players millions of dollars and all they can do is screw up. I am sure the contracts they sign say if they do one of these stupid things they don’t get paid, yet even the loss of that much money doesn’t stop them from blowing it. I wish that the sports they are in, or maybe the colleges they come from would at some point make them take a class on how to handle a life of sports and money. Then again, someone would probably falsify their attendance just to get what they want in the short-term continuing to jeopardize the sports and the individual’s future!
1. Only place where the men’s bathroom has a line and the women’s is empty.
2. Backpacks and tee shirts unshaven middle aged men is normal.
3. It is only day two but I am sick of hearing the words “innovation” and “capabilities”.
4. Cube bunnies asking if they can scan my badge, isn’t as exciting as it sounds.
Ok, I know I can be pretty cynical, but some times I can’t help it. Opportunities to comment are just sitting in front of me like a softball sitting on the tee. They just call out asking me to hit them. I am sitting in a room with 20,000 plus computer geeks listening to an opening speech from the CEO. They started with dancers and loud music followed it up with the marketing manager who talked about the company giving $250,000 to charity during the conference then out comes the CEO who looks like he just ate a prune and says he is glad to be here. Am I supposed to just sit here and not comment? Should I not lean over to my co-worker and make a smarking comment about his need for more coffee or better fiber intake? I know I probably should be better, but it just isn’t going to happen!
Last night I went to back-to-school night for my daughter. This is the painful process of going to each of my daughter’s classes and hearing the teachers tell a group of parents how wonderful their class is going to be. The reality is more likely to be half of what they tell you won’t happen and when I email them to ask what is going on they will not respond or tell me things have changed from the utopia they told me about last night. Some of the classes were filled with parents while others seemed more like a poorly attended tea party. While most parents sat quietly listening and didn’t have much to say, there was always the one parent. One such overachiever walked in and asked the teacher if he remembered her son who was in his class several years ago. Never mind he had just met the new child and couldn’t remember that child, the teacher was kind but explained he couldn’t remember what he had for breakfast so it wasn’t going to be likely he remembered her little bundle of joy. Of course this did not deter wonder mom from describing hair color, height build and any other distinct features of her son. This became a painful event to watch, as the teacher continued to explain his lack of long-term memory. This did not end quickly making every other parent wait for super mom to finally buy a clue and have a seat! I am sure she is PTA president or some other amazingly involved parent but all I could think was how happy her child had to be not to be tagging along.
So this weekend as I was doing my really dumb thing of trying to run up Pikes Peak with a thousand other insane people, I started to really question my choices. At mile ten I really wondered why I would do this to myself. It was about mile eleven when I started to hear from behind a man yelling things like ”start jogging here” or “don’t stop”. As they got closer and closer I continued to hear this guy barking at someone to do what ever it was he wanted them to do. I figure out that this was some sort of personal trainer who was running with a client; at least I hoped that what it was, trying to motivate them to complete the climb to the top. I don’t know about you but the only thing I wanted to do was punch this guy. If he had yelled at me I would have tripped him off the side of the mountain. Maybe it is my age but external motivation doesn’t work anymore, if I don’t want to do it, it is pretty hard to get me off the couch. I can’t afford a personal trainer and if that is what they do I don’t think I want one. However, listening to this guy yell at someone else did take my mind off my problem for a few minutes, so I would like to thank the lady who ran with this dork for that.
There are times when I just can’t keep my eyes open today. I am at a conference, I have been sitting in a chair all day listening to good speakers but right now I can’t help it. My eyelids are heavy, my brain is not listening my behind is slowly spreading out in my seat. It is the wrong time to realize I should not have eaten all the food I had for lunch. I have searched out the coffee bar and the Styrofoam cup full of hot coffee tasting beverage, just isn’t getting the system going. I pray I don’t do something embarrassing like, start snoring or drool on myself. Doing any of those would be a moment all of my co-workers around me would treasure to bring up at meetings and company gatherings for as long as I work with them. Just like the stories we told at lunch about others on the team.
What does my choice of snack say about me? We all have a favorite snack, some we eat at certain times. For example I love popcorn late at night watching TV, it isn’t my favorite, I just like it at that time. Since I have been trying to watch what I eat it is a good solution. When I was doing the low carb thing Pork Rinds were good but every time I think about what they are I get a little squeamish. Beef Jerky on the other hand always rocks! I can’t buy a bag because I will eat the whole thing in one sitting. I can eat it any time and just about any flavor. I have tried the lime and chili, teriyaki, jalapeno, even some fruit flavored. The fruit wasn’t the best but I still ate it all. So as I sit here snacking on some Special K popcorn chips I can only imagine how good some beef would be right now.
My son and I walked into the local Apple store the other day to kill some time and look at the full priced versions of what I want to buy on Amazon. We had not been in the store long when the lights in the store flashed on and off and everyone in the store seemed to stop. From the door next to the genius bar a woman walked out holding a dozen roses, and as she did the entire store erupted in to loud clapping and whistles. I looked around and we were the only ones not clapping. This didn’t go on for a minute, it kept going and going finally I got tired of just standing there so I started looking at product on the walls. It had to last at least ten minutes, and as she headed for the door she stopped and hugged many of those clapping. My son asked someone what was going on and it turned out the lady had been one of the managers since the placed open and it was her last day. Two things came into my mind about this event, the first is that was really awkward as a customer to be in the store and try to shop, I didn’t know if I should clap along or go about my business. Second I have never seen anyone get that kind of send off at any place I have ever worked, but I think we should do more of that. If someone is going on to a better place or in a place to go on to fulfill some lifetime dream somewhere else. We should send them off with a reception equal to their contribution, or at least something more meaningful than a sheet cake!
I was never in the military, but I respect those that are and those that have retired. You don’t have to have been in the service to know what they do is tough and deserving of our respect. Whether you agree or disagree with the military they should be respected. That is why the current VA fiasco seems so bad to me. People who are supposed to be taking care of them have been faking it. Our government has a whole lot of people faking it right now, elected officials and lifers who don’t seem to have done anything for year, anything that is except collect a paycheck. Any time one of these boneheads has to appear before congress it is like clowns banging on gongs. Perhaps if we make congress and all of the federal workers have to be in the same system of care that they are pushing on our veterans it might be a system worth of their service. For now we just get to enjoy all the CYA and hearings officiated by guys like the one in this video.