progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait from Pinole’s East Bay Coffee, holding 12 ounces of the Elixir of Life:

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This has been a strange week. The whole interview thing was odd. It’s for a place I don’t even remember sending an application for, there was a mix-up with the scheduling, and it’s at the State Parks office near McClellan Field. That said, I have a better feeling about this interview compared to the others I’ve had. We’ll see. If not, I understand that they’re having another test coming up soon, so I have that to fall back on if this doesn’t come through.

In the meantime, I should call M___ and/or R_______ to see where I stand regarding working seasonally again. It’s looking like Mt. Tamalpais and not China Camp this year. Which is going to require some adjustment, but it looks fine for the present.

Didn’t get as much hiking done as I wanted to this week. The unsettled weather kind of threw a wet blanket on my plans.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait from the shores of San Pablo Reservoir:

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Well, you could have knocked me over with a feather! I thought I’d seen the last of my job interviews from this last batch of State testing, but I received a phone call from McClellan Park up in (you guessed it!) Sacramento only this morning. So next (not this) Thursday, I have yet another interview. Wish me luck.

Exploiting the break in the weather to get some hiking done. Not only the reservoir, though that was my first destination. The main access road to the parking area at Kennedy Grove was closed off from flooding. The waters had receded when I’d got there, but it was still closed off and had to use the alternate entrance over on Hillside Dr. You could definitely tell where the flooding had occurred, right below the spillway. If the fresh water marks weren’t enough of a tip-off, the dead fish in the road (sticklebacks?) sure were.

I’ve mentioned Kaleidoscope Coffee and their peanut butter sandwiches in previous posts, but (on account of the weather) I hadn’t used a trip out there as a pretext to hike in the Point Richmond area before. That changed this weekend. I went out to Miller-Knox before my jaunt to the café. Photographed Richmond’s poorly-publicized “badlands” (funny, even the park pamphlet doesn’t mention them). Hopefully they show up better in this photo than the last time I tried to take a snapshot of them, with the crappy Kodak digital camera:

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Maracujas

Jan. 30th, 2017 07:20 pm
progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait from Point Pinole:

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I haven’t been here in a while, and I’m impressed by the progress they’ve made with the “new” entrance! Looks like restrooms, picnic tables and a new parking lot have all already been installed! Haven’t checked it out from the other side to see if it’s open yet, but it looked great from the trail!

Kind of a light activity week. Mostly just tedious stuff like automotive maintenance: oil change and fuel additive. You know, spend a little now to avoid spending a lot later, that sort of thing.

Haven’t had any new job interviews yet, but I hope to hear from the people at the Franchise Tax Board this week. In the meantime, I keep haunting the State site to see if any new examinations have come up. Nothing. Spinning the wheels, in other words.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait from a new favorite hang-out spot, Point Richmond’s Kaleidoscope Coffee:

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Didn’t really feel like venturing far this weekend, for various reasons, so I was pretty hermit-y. [profile] bigjohnsf and Harvey (not on Social Media™) lured me into Berkeley for a dinner at Saturn Café, but that was about it. Haven’t done a lot of hiking on account of the weather.

Still in Expectation Mode on that full-time position with the State. Had another interview on Wednesday at the Franchise Tax Board in Rancho Cordova, but I’m not holding my breath on that one. It sounds like a pretty undemanding job, but it requires a Class B license. I’m pretty sure one of their other interviewees already has one. Oh well, looks like there’s another interview coming up in the coming weeks at least.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait from Oakland’s Leona Canyon:

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Nothing as cool happened to me this week as finding that free dual cassette deck. Still on the lookout for a vintage solid-state receiver to replace the much-missed Pioneer SX-1000TW. The ones I saw recently at Urban Ore (an overpriced Kenwood) and Hayward EcoThrift (an even more overpriced Toshiba with missing knobs and an early digital Hitachi, also with missing knobs) didn’t cut it.

Sunday was a long day in San Francisco, hiking around Mountain Lake again, a trip to Amoeba, then a brief stop at Maxfield’s (café) before dinner at Ken’s Kitchen (Chinese restaurant) with [personal profile] albadger, [profile] hardybear, [profile] scottasf, [profile] bigjohnsf and Jim Billy (not on Social Media™). Afterwards, John, JB and I went to Green Apple Books in the West part of town, then for dessert at the doughnut place down the street.

There’s another job interview coming up at the Franchise Tax Board in Sacramento on Wednesday. I’m not expecting much, but I figure someone’s eventually got to take the bait.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait taken during the annual New Year’s General Shafter pilgrimage at the National Cemetery. I didn’t exactly miss it last year, but it was terribly delayed on account of construction. So I’m glad to have made it in timely fashion this year:

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Rather disappointed by my performance at the Half Moon Bay interview. I don’t think I did very well. I get the feeling I’m perceived as this clever B.S. artist who’s book smart but doesn’t have a lot of practical experience. Oh well, it was a nice trip out there, even if it was gray and drizzly.

I have another interview at the Franchise Tax Board (again!) in Sacramento next week. I was supposed to go down to Lake Perris for an interview this Wednesday, but that is so totally not happening for myriad reasons. We’ll see if Henry Cowell calls me back.

I did have the most remarkable thing happen to me this week. I went to the El Cerrito Recycling Center and wandered around their Exchange Zone. This used to be the Book Exchange, but people began dropping off more than just books (records, videotapes, toys, etc.). Anyway, I was just standing there, minding my own business, when someone who I insist must have been at least part ninja dropped something down right at my feet and ran off.

Tascam 302


That, my friends, is a Tascam 302 dual cassette deck. Now, I’ve been combing the thrift stores for a replacement for my ailing Pioneer CT-W300 for a while now, but I absolutely never expected to find something so high-end for free! I tested it at the test plug using a L’oiseau Lyre Bach cassette someone had left, and all the functions seemed to check out (though I was unable to check out the sound, lacking headphones). In the meantime, a guy was hovering over me, forced to wipe the drool from his chin.

Took it home and tested it out, this time with headphones. And yes, it really works! The sacrificial cassette was You’re All I Need, a 1988 EMI Manhattan release from former Labelle vocalist Sarah Dash. In fact, the title song is a duet with her ex-groupmate Patti LaBelle. Rather appropriately, I found this cassette as a freebie a couple of years back at the exact same location!
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from my Xmas Eve walk along Bayside Park in San Rafael:

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I suppose you could call it A Tale of Two Christmases. My first was after work. J__, my co-worker, bought a whole mess of food and cooked it on his little Weber grill outside the maintenance shop. We spent the time waiting for things to cook telling off-color stories from our pasts. I had made a spice cake for dessert and brought that for the cookout.

The second was in San Francisco with John ([livejournal.com profile] bigjohnsf), Peter ([livejournal.com profile] hardybear) and Jim Billy (not on LJ). We went to Star India for Indian buffet and then went on a whirlwind tour of San Francisco Christmas light displays. It’s always a pleasure to see Peter, since I do so rarely these days.

Counting the grains of sand while I’m still at China Camp. It’s been kind of a rough and rocky season but in the end, I’m going to miss the place. What lies ahead is uncertain, but I trust something good is on the way. I do have an interview coming up, and a few “contingency” applications out there, so cross your fingers for me.

Circobanda

Dec. 19th, 2016 07:03 pm
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
As I’m now counting down the days that I still have it: self-portrait from just outside park housing again:

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What an adventure the past week has been! First of all, good news and bad news. They’re actually the same news: my interview at Half Moon Bay has been postponed. Since I botched the interview for the Sierra district, it’s good that I have extra time to study. I need to make this count!

And I get the distinct feeling that the people who scheduled the interview looked at the weather forecast and thought, “we can’t have prospective employees driving around in that!” So I went to work in the pounding rain instead! Fun! And L___, a park aide from S. P. Taylor, was along for the ride. I was to show her around to familiarize her with the park and the cleaning routine. But we got pummeled by rain the whole time. Eventually, J__ sought us out and told us to come back to the shop, where he’d built a fire. She and I played games of hangman until it was time for her to drive back.

And on Friday, I got stuck in the campground. I somehow didn’t notice the fallen tree on the downhill slope between the upper and lower portions of the campground until it was too late, and I was unable to back my work truck back up the hill. D___ was the only other person on duty, and since neither he nor I were signed out on the chainsaw, we had to go back to the shop and bring back handsaws to deal with the tree. So what should have taken ten minutes wound up taking an hour. Oh well, at least it’s done.

One more week of work and my season is over. Technically, the 30th and 31st are work days for me, but I’ve requested days off so I can move out of my residence. I’m going to kind of miss the place.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from Empire Mine State Park, adjacent to Grass Valley:

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Well, I kind of blew the interview, but I had a nice (if chilly) day up in the foothills. Grass Valley is a quaint little town, and a nice place to spend the day. Had dinner in Sacramento with [livejournal.com profile] 2ndbanana and [livejournal.com profile] bobobear12, and it was good to catch up with them. Wound up talking about variety shows and specials of the 1970s, of all things.

On the plus side, I have another interview in Half Moon Bay coming up on Thursday. I need to make this one count, as I really want this job! I’m cramming like a college student in preparation for it.

It looks like I’ll be spending the Christmas holiday with my co-worker, J__. He suggested a cookout, and I told him I’d bake something and bring it. Maybe my “famous” tomato soup spice cake.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from the Santa Cruz Mountains off of Highway 9, in the sort of gray area between Castle Rock, Big Basin and Long Ridge:

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Speaking of Big Basin, I had a job interview there. So, basically my prospects for employment now are Maintenance in Big Basin or Visitor Services at Samuel L. Jackson Samuel J. Tilden Samuel P. Taylor. I am actually hoping for SPT, it’s a little closer to civilization than Big Basin. Expecting to hear a call within the next week; waiting is killing me!
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Just capturing the new face fur in the latest self-portrait:

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The big action this week was the drive up to Olompali for the State Parks job interview. Looks like my new assignment will be either Mt. Tam or Samuel P. Taylor, so no ferry-boats to work for me this year.

The other big action was the drive up to [livejournal.com profile] 2ndbanana’s B.D. The big 5-0. I let him have my DVD-R of the complete Electra Woman and Dyna Girl TV series as a gift. We played some sort of dice game and had a big spaghetti dinner, not necessarily in that order.

My love-hate relationship with the El Sobrante library is metamorphosing into a hate-hate relationship. The slow-ass internet connection is bad enough, but my back is still bothering me from sitting on their horrendously uncomfortable chairs. But it’s the only open library on a Thursday that’s convenient to me. At least it’s in a nice, safe neighbourhood, and there’s the one librarian who’s always nice to me and compliments my external keyboard (which I need because the shift key on my laptop is, shall we say, unreliable).
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from a BART train:

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I was on BART to go see Marga Gomez, who [livejournal.com profile] albadger generously invited me to see. After the conclusion of the show, [livejournal.com profile] bigjohnsf suggested Indian food at...I forget the name of the restaurant, but it was in the block south of the 16th St. Mission BART station. It was very good, very spicy stuff; I had Chicken...something starting with “X,” which if I remember correctly was a sauce of tamarinds and green onions.

Incidentally: no I was not drunk that night. I have no idea why the sudden difficulty in remembering things.

Speaking of BART, I am convinced that wifi on BART is just a myth. I actually did finally get it to the sign in screen...only to have it drop the connection. BART, why do you hate me?

Tomorrow is my State Parks interview, so wish me luck on that. Today, I am composing this post from the Hercules Public Library, which I am visiting for the first time. No, really. It is probably the most modern library in Contra Costa, which makes sense, considering it was built in the 1990s. Once upon a time, all of Hercules’ city offices were all at the bay side, as that’s where the powder company was. When the population center of Hercules moved to the east side of I-80, so did the city offices (the fact that the old Town Hall was an earthquake-unsafe brick building probably also contributed to that). I don’t even know if Hercules had a library before this.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
This week’s self-portrait from Alamere Falls, right on the Pacific Ocean, located in Point Reyes National Seashore:

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I had been wanting to take this trip for a long time. All this talk about Alamere Falls and how spectacular it was and I’d never seen it. Now I’m glad I took the trip, and I’m glad I got to experience it firsthand...and I’m glad I never need to take the trip again! Because the trail down to the beach is terrifying! I knew it was not a park-maintained trail and that it would be a bit overgrown. I was prepared for dodging poison-oak. What I was not prepared for was the bit just before the beach when suddenly the trail drops down at a 90° angle! It was at that point I was thinking, “This might have been a mistake. I was not informed that this hike involved rock climbing!” Fortunately, it was a well-attended hike, and there were people to help out with the bit that involved climbing.

That said, I’m very glad I went. I’m even gladder that I did not go alone, as I definitely would have chickened out before getting to the beach otherwise.

Not much else to report. Still don’t have a replacement job. I didn’t do as much work on the upcoming Movie Explorer review as I wanted to. I did finally receive my first Blip payout, which meant I could delete some old, embarrassing videos. No more me stumbling over my lines in that awful Flesh Feast review! No more lame V-logs of me imitating Lucille Benson shot on that horrible Colorpix camera!
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Because you guys deserve an image of me at work, a photo taken at the bench next to the service dock at Ayala Cove:

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All good things must come to an end and so it is also with my seasonal work on Angel Island. I knew it was coming, just not so soon: the 31st is my last day. I can reapply in February for the next season (and even check out what other State Parks have positions open then) but in the meantime I need to find interim work. I do have unemployment to fall back on but I don’t want to get too used to not working; as history has proven, that’s dangerous for me. I should probably call M_____ at Manpower™, who called me twice for job offers while I was working. Hopefully she won’t think I’m like the Boy Who Cried Wolf.

So sorry for the outstanding gap in Movie Explorer reviews but on top of work fatigue, internet has been down at home for over a week now. It should be back up within the week so I’ll at least be able to upload it...assuming it will be ready this week. Progress has been glacial. Each night, I think, “Tonight, I’m going to really buckle down and get some serious editing d—Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.....” And right after the Blipocalypse; my show was saved when so many others lost theirs. Ben Minotte, the talented creator of The Oddity Archive, got the chop. I’m feeling serious survivor’s guilt, as I think his show is a lot more unique and imformative than mine. He’s still going on Youtube, though, check out his channel. I highly recommend it.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from boring old Wildcat. I wasn’t trying for a “look-alike” series photo, but I’m getting sort of an Avery Schreiber vibe from this photo. Who wants Doritos™?

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The big event since my last post was this morning: a trip up to Petaluma to fill out the paperwork I need to start working out on the island. Now I know how to get state park maps for free: sign up to work for the parks department! Looks like Ranger Steve has a couple of days off, so it seems his assistant Mary Jo will be guiding me through the process. I also made a trip to the shoe store to buy new shoes, black work boots that will go with my new uniform. Also, I needed new shoes badly anyway, considering the lugs were falling off of my old hiking boots.

I finished writing and taping the new Movie Explorer review last week, but I made barely any progress with the editing, mainly because of stupid errors on my part. On Saturday, I made it to the café and was all ready to begin editing...only to realize I had neglected to transfer the video files from my camera to my laptop. And then, on Sunday, I arrived at my destination only to realize I forgot to pack my laptop altogether! D’oh! On the plus side, I found a treasure trove at Amoeba over the weekend; someone had dumped a whole ton of trashy potboiler movies on VHS, most of them out-of-print. Extra Movie Explorer fodder for months to come!

Speaking of Movie Explorer fodder, [livejournal.com profile] albadger and I had our first Bad Movie Night in quite some time; enjoying a Mexican dinner in Dublin before decamping at his place to watch an episode of Electra Woman and Dyna Girl (I have now seen the entire series!) followed by our main feature; 1970’s Toomorrow. In it, a British bubblegum pop band featuring a “tonalizer” (home-made synthesizer) among their instrumentation attracts the attention of space aliens who hear something the audience clearly doesn’t in their vapid marshmallow pop. Maybe it’s the presence of Olivia Newton-John in her first big break. It’s also 1970, so expect clunky attempts at social consciousness via student protests and whatnot. It’s fluffy and inconsequential but harmless and mildly entertaining; this was Don Kirshner’s attempt to follow up The Monkees, UK big screen style. All the songs sound like the sort of thing you’d expect to see performed by animated teens who solved mysteries on the side with their talking pet.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Rather “normal”-looking self-portrait from Spasso, an old favourite which it’s nonetheless been a while since I’ve visited.

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I’ve found that a bit of hair gel (but just a bit!) combed in before my hair dries helps keep it more manageable and less poofy. Of course, when I go for those ridiculous spit-curls when playing Explorer’s brother Oscar in the review videos, I glob it on, with the knowledge that I’ll soon be washing it out.

Speaking of, I’m nearly done writing the script for the next episode. This time, there’s no real linear follow-along of the plot, mainly because the plot is pretty minimal in this film, just pretext for a character study. Oh, you’ll see! For perhaps the first time (or at least, the first time since The Second Coming of Suzanne), I feel like a real movie reviewer!

I’m really worried about this job thing. I haven’t heard from Ranger Steve in a week and I’m beginning to wonder if they’ve abandoned the idea of hiring me. I seriously need this job or I’ll be broke by the end of September.

Needed some fresh, cool bayside air today, so I went down to Point Isabel. As with a lot of parklands today, it was very popular, but me being my usual cheapskate self, it was one of the few bayfront parks nearby where you didn’t need to pay for parking. It’s a popular dog walking area, so you get to see all sorts of breeds when you visit. Also great views of three Bay Area bridges, Angel Island, Brooks Island and Mt. Tamalpais, plus shorebird viewing and glances of the El Cerrito area creeks drainage (now mostly channeled/culverted). I hiked about ¾ of the way to Marina Bay before resting on a bench, rehydrating and turning back. One of these days, I do want to try Mudpuppies, the café near the entrance (which doubles as a dog wash station).
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from atop False Gun Vista Point in Miller-Knox Regional Park, which seems to be the Park of Cumbersome Names:

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It smelled like treated sewage at the top of the hill, and like creosote at the bottom. And there were goats.

Still waiting on the word that I can begin work. Were it not for the glare, you would have spotted Angel Island beyond the tree in the above photo. I can’t help but worry that I’ll get a word that they decided not to go with me after all. I’m deliberately putting off buying the uniform for that very reason.

The big event this weekend was seeing [livejournal.com profile] albadger in Marius. I thought it was very entertaining and everyone played their parts well (and Al was not the only cute one on stage). It was at Fort Mason, where I had not been since...whenever they used to have the Dickens Fair there. I’m guessing 30+ years ago. I wound up parking on the other side of the park from the theater, which meant lots of walking, including down a long flight of stairs.

Got less work on the balance of the Movie Explorer Gay Shame Month reviews than I hoped for, but I at least did get some work done, namely the intro for the next episode. Also, got a proper DVD for Review #3, which beats my “taped off cable TV at EP speed” version all to hell. It’s actually an awful, awful film and not in the way I find appealing, but one must suffer for one’s art. And the fact that it was sale priced softens the blow a bit. On the minus side, there appears to be an extended cut of the film on the flip side of the disc. Zeus preserve us all. Also softening the blow is the knowledge that I never have to watch Windows ever again. Incidentally, Infamous Sphere actually posted a review of Windows a couple of weeks before mine, for a second opinion (which is not too terribly different from mine, does anyone actually like this film?), check out her review.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait ta’en in the secluded Broken Oaks section of Sobrante Ridge Regional Park:

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I’d planned on updating yesterday, but I was feeling migraine-y and queasy. I also had self-portraits of me lying around in bed looking miserable, but you people deserved better.

Still waiting on the announcement when I can come in to work on the island. I had to e-mail a scan of the form I filled out for my fingerprinting. I hope that’s enough. Even though I basically have the job, it doesn’t feel like I do, and I keep waiting for the announcement that I haven’t actually got it. The delay meant I couldn’t pay as much of my credit card bill as I would have liked. Sigh. Stupid red tape. Even with the job, September is going to be a lean month! Particularly as I have to dump a ton of money on clothes even before I start work.

Speaking of delays, my new Movie Explorer review would have been done by now if it weren’t for annoying technical issues involving video with glitchy audio. Transcoding and re-transcoding meant that I lost two valuable days of editing. Again, you people deserve better. Hoping it will be up before Friday, cross your fingers, internet’s not as reliable here as it should be. I’m considering getting a new and better wireless router.

And still on the subject of new purchases, the old coffee machine (a Kenmore! I had no idea they made coffee machines!) finally crapped out, so I’m considering an upgrade. The only advantage the Kenmore had over the old Black & Decker was that the heating element shut off automatically. As a coffee fiend, I definitely will not be following the advice of my sister (“Get something cheap!”), who’s happy with her pre-ground Keurig coffee pods. It looks like it’s between the Cuisinart and the more expensive Bunn. Definitely not the Hamilton-Beach $20 special from Bloodbath & Beyond, which would definitely be a trade-down (apparently, it’s another where you have to turn off the hot plate manually).

Tu quoque

Aug. 13th, 2013 10:10 pm
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from one of my usual haunts, Berkeley Espresso:

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Amazingly, I managed to wrap the taping on a new Movie Explorer episode just this afternoon. There’s a brief “in the field” scene in the upcoming review. If I’m diligent with the sound recording and editing (and assuming my crappy internet service doesn’t crap out on me as per normal), I ought to have it up by the weekend. I knew saying, “I’m sorry this one was so late, I promise to have the next one up sooner,” was a curse. That’s why I didn’t post that with the last one. I guess what I ought to be saying is, “I’m sorry this one was so late, but the next one will be up whenever I get round to finishing it, so deal!”

Went to a pool party in the South Bay with [livejournal.com profile] bigjohnsf on Sunday. Not as hot (in either sense of the word) as the Sacramento parties, but I had a lot of fun. Perhaps too much fun. I think our rowdy ball game began to annoy some of the other partygoers. I made the tomato soup spice cake again. It was kind of funny, I checked on it, noticed there were still five or six pieces left, then I went to pick up John. When I went back to the pan, it was empty! I guess someone liked it!

On the job front, it’s pretty much a waiting game. Waiting for my fingerprints to process. I’m supposed to get a phone call informing me to go visit the office in Tiburon and sign up, then I can begin work. Still waiting on that call. I’ve been procrastinating on the purchasing of the uniform. I’ve decided to get shoes, too; I doubt my old hiking shoes will match the uniform and besides, they’re pretty much shot, I need new shoes anyway. I think this may be the first (only?) time I can write off shoes as a business expense on my taxes.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait (I flat out refuse to use the term “selfie.” Yuck!) from boring old Wildcat, with me looking unusually feline:

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It’s official, I look like Roger C. Carmel. A friend of a friend said so after viewing my latest video. Maybe I ought to marry up with a Kaye Ballard look-alike...no, scratch that idea. They’ll just replace me next season with Richard Deacon, despite the fact that he neither looks nor sounds remotely like me.

Speaking of Movie Explorer pursuits, the writing of the upcoming episode is sidelined briefly while I work on another writing project. This is a text project with a long fuse, no one will publicly see it till next year, but I wanted to work on it while the inspiration was fresh.

In the world of “real” work, last week took me on a whirlwind tour of the Bay Area, first to Marin City (the only “ghetto” in Marin County) for fingerprinting, then up to Vallejo to get my DMV printout (which took such a short time, it was almost disappointing...then again, the less time spent at the DMV, the better). I sent all my paperwork off and Ranger Steve informed me that it’s all been received. Now all I need is to wait for the fingerprints to clear so I can sign in at the main office, and start working on the island. I also need to go and get my uniform; I was deliberately procrastinating to make sure I had the job, but it looks pretty set in stone at this point. I actually had to turn down a job this weekend when the lady at Manpower phoned me up. Just as well, it was a janitorial job for lousy pay, and it was in freaking Palo Alto, so the commute would have killed me.

Oh, and my whirlwind tour of the Bay Area also took me to Old St. Hilary’s Open Space Preserve in Tiburon, where I had an aerial view of the island where I’ll soon be working every day for the next four months or so, as well as panoramic vistas of pretty much everything else around. A pity it was so socked in with fog, meaning the Golden Gate Bridge wasn’t clearly visible. Oh, and the road leading up to the park is crazy, crazy steep! My poor brakes! I kept the car in first gear all the way down and babied my brakes. Hooray! No burning brake smell!

My exciting task for the day: get a new pillow for the bed. Don’t tell me my life isn’t a thrill a minute.

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