Monthly Archives: June 2010

The Bag of Crap Came

The Bag of Crap Came

Well the bag of crap came a week and a half ago and I’ve been too disappointed to post about it. And really busy. In retrospect I should have really prepared myself for a bag of crap instead of thinking I would get something amazing that would change my life. Forever.

Ok so here is what I got:
One harddrive thing that I’m guessing doesn’t work. I don’t even really know what it is, I should probably go ask Patrick but I’m too lazy.

Two Todd’s Dirt creole seasoning

One USB mouse

One fabric wine tote that hold 4 bottles. It’s like one of those reusable grocery store bags except for wine.

That’s it a 2.9 pound bag of crap. Maybe I will get it again and get something really amazing. Maybe not.

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What would you say you do here?

What would you say you do here?

When people ask me what I do I usually try to avoid the question. Sometimes I try to come up with a witty response but normally I just say “I don’t want to talk about work”. I avoid the question because: I feel like it’s hard to explain what I do, the company name isn’t well known, what I do is nerdy, its not the most exciting job in the world, and did I mention that what I do is nerdy?

So here it is. This is what I do.

I am a Quality Assurance Analyst for a small software company in Renton that creates 3D design sales tools for closet and storage design.  Basically I try to represent the user and find defects in the program. I sit in front of a computer all day (actually multiple computers) in a cubicle looking for bugs in the software. I also spend time creating test plans and researching what new features are going in the version. It can be boring at times but I like the aspect of needing to be organized and detail oriented. Also its pretty exciting to find bugs – especially ones that crash the program, those are my favorite!

I started working at this company right out of college (6 years ago). I worked there for a couple of years and then decided I wanted to work for a larger company that had better benefits and the possibility to move up in the company. I ended up interviewing and getting a job in the IT department at Alaska Airlines. I worked on the Flight Operations team and worked on programs that helped dispatchers, plane weight and balance, delay coding and fun stuff like that. I loved working there and not just because I could fly for free! I loved everything about airplanes so working on software that supported the day to day operations was very exciting! In the year and a half I worked there I was asked about 3 times by my old company to come back and eventually the offer became good enough that I couldn’t refuse. Alaska counter-offered but my decision had been made.

It was a good move because I would have the ability to work a more flexible schedule as well as part time if we decided to have a family. So I went back. Going back was really good but really bad all at the same time. I was so sad to leave Alaska – I cried every day for weeks when I would drive by my old office.  It was on the way to work. I wasn’t stalking them. I promise. I am glad to be back to my old company though. I have more responsibility and love the applications that I am working on. It also worked out because now that we have a baby I am only working 30 hours a week.

I didn’t know how it would be to work and have a baby. I didn’t know if I would want to stay home all time time. I dreaded going back to work after my 12 week maternity leave. I was scared and didn’t know how I would balance work, baby, home, and life. Typical Salli-style I had a major meltdown. Typical Patrick-style he calmly and lovingly supported me and suggested that I should go back and try it for a few months and if it wasn’t working I could be done. There is childcare in my building so that was super convenient – Hunter just came to and from work with me and I could visit/feed him at any time during the day! I decided to work three 9 hour days in the office and the other 3 hours at home. (Actually now that I think about it when I first went back things were a bit crazy. There was a huge project that needed more of my time so I worked 40 hours a week for the first month. It wasn’t too bad and that told me that I was going to be able to make this all work out.)

Anyway if you were to ask me 10 years ago where I thought I’d be this wouldn’t have been it. I never saw myself doing a nerdy job. I never saw myself working by choice after having a baby. I never saw myself as someone that companies would want as an employee. I wanted to be a stay at home mom. Maybe at some point I will decide that staying at home is the right thing for me but right now it isn’t. The 12 weeks I was home on maternity leave were extremely difficult. That’s a whole different story for a different post.

Funny how life works out sometimes.

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For most of my life I have wanted to go on a game show. More specifically Wheel of Fortune. I have no idea why. I’m not really that good of the puzzle solver, I think really it’s about spinning the wheel and the chance of winning!

I noticed that the Wheelmobile was coming to the Emerald Queen Casino so this was my chance! Patrick and I went down there and let’s just say it didn’t go well. At all. We headed down there and got in line. While in line we filled out applications and soon went into their big concert room and put or applications in a big bin. There was a tiny Wheel puzzle on the stage which looked kind of cute but a little cheesy. There were tons of people there and not the classiest group to say the least. We waited for people to file in and take their seats. Then the show started. The host guy and Vanna wanna be seemed like they had consumed massive amounts of caffine and proceeded to bounce (literally) around the stage to get people pumped up. It was nuts. They called names out of the big bin of applications 5 at a time to play a mini game on stage and kind of do a quick interview to see if they might be a good contestant.  The mini game they did was pretty much taking turns guessing letter (no spinning of anything) and seeing if they could solve the puzzle. The Vanna wanna be would write the letters to the puzzle on dry erase tiles. Classy. Probably about 30 people made it up total. I was not one of them and I was actually ok with it. I felt like the whole experience was pretty bad. It didn’t match what I’ve seen on tv for Wheel of Fortune. I don’t know if that’s because I was at a Casino in Tacoma or what. Needless to say we left really quickly. I was disappointed that the experience wasn’t better and it kind of made me not want to watch the show anymore.

Here are a few fun highlights of the people I saw there:

– drunk guy 2 rows in front of us who stood on his chair and tried to predict the prizes the contestants were going to win

– lady who befriended me in line who…

1. said that people named Salli bring her luck

2. was engaged but didn’t know if she was going to marry him

3. kept telling “jokes” and would proceed to hit me on the arm

4. said she wasn’t a gambler but said “oh where’s that slot machine with the pigs, I love that one”

5. said she had to go to the bathroom really bad and asked if I went pee all the time because I’ve had a baby

– lady who got called on stage who said she won the coat she was wearing and then when asked about it by the host couldn’t figure out where she won it, why she won it, and what the logo said

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