songscloset: Me with the sun flare on my face. (Default)
Geordie had to go into the local office late this afternoon. Turns out, one of the guys who recruited him, and who wants him on his team, is in town, so I told him he should go to dinner with the group. He'd been heading home, but really, he should go to dinner.

This means I'm on my own for dinner, as Merrie works until 9:30 tonight and I don't work today. I should go put my laundry in the dryer, though.

I'm working on writing a short story - it won't be one I'll sell, but I'll make it free for people on my writing blog. When I set one up. I've got the pseudonym already.

Re: work stuff, though. This place really earns its low glassdoor rating. The training is still not adequate, and there's something else going on. We've an intern and she's getting the training that I should have gotten. They're carefully showing her everything, then watching to make sure that she knows what she's doing, and correcting any mistakes she's made - all without her needing to ask for anything. She was loading instruments within the first week of training and they barely wanted me in the lab for the first month. At this point, I fully expect them to spend lots of time training her on data analysis, which is the one thing I'm really interested in learning. Needless to say, they haven't given me any training on it. I've asked and every time I ask, they say that they'll 'get to it when there's time'.

The thing is, I work the afternoon/evening shift. Several times, when a gap in my training comes up, my manager says that he thought the afternoon analyst had trained me. But they'd kept me on day shift for so long because the day shift analysts (the manager and the other day shift analyst, who's a total pill) were supposed to be training me (and weren't). I sincerely doubt they're going to be training me much on the data analysis.

A couple of times, recently, little things have irritated me. I missed a spike into one of the vials, so the entire batch had to be re-run. This has happened before, to the other analysts. When my manager spoke to me about it, he specifically said that maybe I need to figure out a different process or technique, so as to make sure this doesn't happen again. It's happened once in over 500 vials since I started actually being able to load instruments. Hell, he's done stuff like this and I don't see him rearranging his process.

Several times, my manager has said that he - and others - have taken the opportunity to test their own things, like home water samples, on the instruments, after all regular samples have been run. So, one day, when we didn't have a lot of samples, I tested a small amount of my favorite hand lotion. I used a method which gives 500X dilution of the original sample, so as to be very sure my sample wouldn't damage the instrument. (And, as it happens, I know for sure we were testing something truly foul in the actual sample batch.)

I told my manager about it and he explained that I ran a serious risk of damaging the instrument and that I shouldn't do things like this without approval from the lab manager and ... (and incidentally, my lotion is very low volatiles).

I just feel like there's a lot of hypocritical behavior and it's annoying. Mostly, I'm going to keep my head down and ignore as much as possible.

Geordie and I are seriously thinking of moving to the East Coast; his new job will pay him the same no matter where he lives, and my contract is up at the end of November. Moving in December would be a bit wonky, but we can swing it, we think.

Anyway, it's past my bedtime, so good night.
songscloset: Me with the sun flare on my face. (Default)
We're watching the Great British Bakeoff. It's as good as people said - the first two seasons were fun, and now we're watching the last one. It makes me quite pleased that I'm not on the show, though; seriously, they're thrown into the deep end from beginning to end, aren't they? Yikes.

Merrie's up in Seattle, at ECCC with friends. Geordie and I are enjoying the time on our own. We like having her at home, but it's funny to be just the two of us.

He and I have spent lots of time together alone - we have gone on weeks-long road trips together, literally just the two of us and no one else. Someone at his work said something about knowing people who, when they retired, had to learn how to spend time together without anyone else and that some of their relationships didn't survive the retirement. Geordie and I don't have to worry about that!

Which is good, because he's just been laid off, sort of. The company he worked for ... two years ago, I guess, was bought by a company which immediately was bought by a large computer company. The middle company wasn't really working out, so their product sort of stalled... which made the large company decide to cut its losses.

So, they've laid off half the staff in the group, which is about 120 people, including all of the salespeople for that group. The layoff is unusual: they're still nominally employed until May 1, and if they don't get a different job before that date, they get the full total of their vacation pay, and they get both the stock options vested immediately and the full quantity of the 4-year bonus program that they'd originally been offered.

They're being paid for the period between now and May 1, they're welcome to come into the office and have as much of the free breakfasts and lunches as they want, and they can still ... work? (only, there aren't any tasks for them to do). I think we'll be going on a trip in these next couple of months.

He's been looking at jobs in other parts of the country, both in the Portland Or area and maybe up in New England. He'll really like New England, although I'll freeze for the 6 months of winter. I prefer the Pacific Northwest, myself. I fit better into the culture and I love the mystical redwood forests.

I've been doing lots of knitting, and I think I forgot to post there that I finished the Hobbit fanfic that I'd been working on for over two years. I'm super proud of it; I'm still writing side bits of the story, but I'm honestly thinking of finding out if I can print it out and get it bound, so I can have it on my own shelves. I can get Scrivener to compile it to ebook format and then use Lulu, maybe? It's nearly 300K words, though, so it's fucking massive.

Anyway, there's lots of work to do, even though I don't yet have a job. Ugh.
songscloset: Me with the sun flare on my face. (Default)
I remember that someone on my flist lives in or near Portland - can I ask a question?

What's Happy Valley like? We're flirting with moving up there (if Geordie gets a job there) and it's so different price-wise from down here in the SF Bay Area that I have a hard time telling what's a good area and a bad one.

Do you have any hints or tips?

Thanks tons!


songscloset: Me with the sun flare on my face. (Default)

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