Yesterday, it snowed again, and while it wasn't very deep (a few inches), our Saturn SC3 can't handle snow. It slips and slides everywhere. So we stayed put until the plowed our roads last night. They are predicting more snow later today, but it will all probably melt after the weekend. This is the kind of snow I am used to, but it's been so long, a lot of my snow skills are rusty. At least I remember to check to see if the light packs has dark ice under it. I nearly did the splits on my own front steps, but luckily, I kept low to the ground so I was able to recover without pulling a loin or something.
I got a 4.5% raise at work, which covers the cost of living plus tip. I also got stock options, which right now are so low that they didn't even give us how much they were worth, just how many we got. They base it on percentage of pay, so like years ago, I'd get 50 and be happy. Now I got almost a thousand for almost the same price. I hope the market improves, a lot of my stock is in the negative if I sell right now. I have some shares at $90 when the stock is at $11. Yeesh. Those will be long term, I tell you. Luckily, I also have some at $1.25 so I am not totally in the red. The best part of this is the "rating" I got for "Exceeds standards" which is like a rating of 4 on a scale of 1-5. Considering I got a little backlash for "not adopting new technologies," this was pretty good. The "backlash" was because my boss wants to use an old, outdated HP technology (Note to programmers: how old? Hint: our programs have to have line numbers. Yeah, that old...) and I wanted to use free Linux and perl. I won. He lost (we are phasing out what he spent over $200,000 on with my $0 cost solution) because I could run my stuff without buying anything, or requiring a service contract. I am not really bummed about this because A: I am still employed, and B: My job does not suck (it's fun a lot, I get lots of praise, and I am always learning new things and fixing stuff). I have many friends who are employable, but unemployed right now.
My friend Nate and his wife Jen are in town, and I hope they come over tonight. Nate was a guy I met while working another job. He was 18, and a total technological dynamo. Nate was the guy with the answers, and if he didn't have them, he'd make them up! He taught me a LOT over the years, about various topics, like building computers, configuring Windows, and so on. Over the years, though, our skills have parted, and no longer do we need each other's advice because we're working on various things. He admitted to me a few weeks ago that he wasn't "up to speed" on new hardware, and the question I asked him about APM was out of his league. Wow. I had out-Nated Nate. Thank God he's cool and fun to be with, or we'd never talk ever again. :) He's energetic, and likes to talk a lot. I like that type. I am the only one that calls him Nate, because he introduced to me as "Nathaniel," and anyone named that where I was growing up was called "Nate," for short. His parents (who are also mega-cool) know it's me just because I am the only one that calls him Nate.
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