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The Biology Coloring Book
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Getting Rich
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18th-Mar-2012 02:28 pm - Blast from the past.
Whoa, I haven't been on LiveJournal in over a year it seems.  A lot has happened.  I'm now living in Paducah, KY, working in Metropolis, Illinois as an inspector at a nuclear plant.  The place refines raw uranium ore into a form that can be enriched.  It's the only plant of it's kind in the U.S.  I deal with a lot of strong acids and radioactive material.  So much for living a long life.

I have my apartment set up in a ridiculous fashion.  So far I have a tv/tv stand, three computers and a computer desk, and one partially assembled 9-drawer bed.  But it works for me.  I need about two hundred book shelves. 

I'm pretty content right now.  I've gotten pretty fat.  But that stuff happens when you ruin your joints from running, and have to eat out for 4 years because you are always on the road.

I do miss scuba diving and flying to exotic destinations.  Hopefully I will get back into that.
13th-Mar-2011 11:32 pm(no subject)
Well I did it.  I completed my ultrasound courses in Hoover, AL.  Then I drove straight to Houston, TX for a job interview.  I got a job making $30/hr at at an industrial ultrasound company.  I start April 4th.

Very bitter-sweet victory.  I made the rounds this past weekend seeing friends and a certain former-lover.  I made amends with everyone.  It does make me sad to have to leave though.  I will certainly miss my friends.

I have to do two-weeks at my current company before heading on.  The gutting of my company that was done in the last 18 months makes me sick.  David W., Gary E., Gary B., Josh L., Jerame H., and Noah G.  Out of a 10-12 technician office, that was a Stalinistic purge.  

So I will try my luck in Houston.  I hate leaving behind the certain few special people that I like spending time with here in Louisville.  

This new job and move have also brought up a few personal issues that I have had to work on.  It was long overdue, and fortunately gave me the motivation to work through them (as I still am).  If I can come out of this a better person, then it will all have been worth it.

Tomorrow is my birthday. 
13th-Feb-2011 05:06 pm(no subject)
Hell of a weekend.  Got to spend time with a lot of people I enjoy being around.  Really got the pep back in my step.

I leave for Alabama either late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.  I'll be down there for two weeks.  It's going to be really hard not to get discouraged.  These short, high impact courses are brutal, and I don't usually put the concepts together until the last day or two.  I just have to keep my motivation high, take extremely good notes, and not be afraid to ask stupid questions.  I have a one-track mind, and I need to get it back on ultrasound this week.  Hopefully that way I'll be able to ramrod my way through this.  
7th-Feb-2011 10:48 pm(no subject)
Just booked my room in Alabama.  I got a great rate since I'll be there for two weeks.  Something like $45 a day.  This place is actually pretty nice, I stayed there the last time I was in Hoover, AL.  I'm a little apprehensive about the course I'm taking.  Week 1 will be cake (I hope), while Week 2 will be tough.  Of course there is a practical test at the end of Week 2.  Because of the difficult nature of this type of testing, practical testing weeds out individuals who have yet to gain enough skill and experience to be proficient inspectors.  Or as my instructor told me last time "Performance demonstration tests are going to be common place, get used to them".  Might as well.

It's been groundhog day here lately.  Go to work, do the same thing, come home, do the same thing- Repeat.  Not getting a super amount of enjoyment out of it. 

I talked to another guy at work, he's two years older than me.  He has a degree in economics from the University of Kentucky.  He asked if I wanted to go on the road with him and do contract work.  Man, that is a heck of an offer, but that doesn't really fit my goals right  now.  I need to get in with a company the focuses soley on ultrasound, so I can hone my skills more.  Other opportunities will arise once I become skilled.
3rd-Feb-2011 10:40 pm(no subject)
Helped a friend move some furniture into his new house yesterday.  He's also a co-worker.  He's 31, he's dating (and living) with a 20 year old girl.  She's a really cool girl, in college for physical therapy.  Has a cute little daughter.  My buddy is a pretty wild dude, but he's calming down.

I love their house, it'd make an awesome bachelor pad.  It's a two-bedroom, built in 2009.  It's kind of small, but its in a very nice neighborhood.  They are doing a rent-to-own thing.  $750 a month, and after the first year they have the option to buy.  75% of the rent they pay goes towards the down-payment.  They got such a good deal because my buddy's girlfriend mom is the realitor who got them the house.

Talked to my ex tonight.  We got things straightened out, I think I got the closure I need now.  But wow, what a delayed reaction.  We broke up in August, I was fine with it.  in late November we met at a bar where we first met.  We saw each other once or twice after than in December.  It was a bit more than platonic but not really dating.  Then she started dating another guy seriously.  He was a loan officer at a bank.  That's when I got messed up pretty bad.  Fortunately for me, when things are going to shit, I don't have any self-destructive behaviors.  Quite the opposite, I work like hell on a solution to get out of that situation.  My solution at the time was lining up a better job for myself, signing up for the latest ultrasound courses, and getting the hell out of this cold part of the country.  Well that's still the path I'm on right now.  I leave for Alabama Feb 20, going to take a two week phased array course, then head down to Houston for a job interview.

My goals are simple.  I want a job I enjoy, one that provides me with enough income to raise a family when the time comes, and someone who accepts me as much as my ex did.  The only thing lacking from her was the support for my career.  Some weeks I would drive a thousand miles to get to testing sites, and not be home for days (sometimes up to six weeks) at a time.  So basically I need someone who supports my decisions too.  Rational ones anyways.

Well anyways, I hope I can maintain this feeling of acceptance of the situation.  That would be awesome.  But if not, I'll just turn those negative emotions into motivation like I always do. 
1st-Feb-2011 09:27 pm(no subject)
Boy I am just not enjoying things right now.  Very much disliking work.  Not a whole hell of a lot to do when I get home.  Single life isn't all its cracked up to be. 

Went over to a friend's new house this weekend after working 6 days this week.  He was having a little shindig.  I went to the bar with a girl from there after the party.  That was pretty fun.  But 8 hours of fun doesn't stymie the boredom, tedium, and stress of the rest of the week. 

This has been the routine for the last several months.  Occasionally I'll go over to a friend's house on the weekends.  Same situation.  I need to take a scientific approach to this:  What is the problem- what can I do to fix the problem- how effectively can I implement the solution?

I don't care for my job (more specifically my place of employment) anymore.  Quite a few of my friends have already been fired and laid off.  Even though I made the cut, it still makes it a desolate place and increases the workload on the few that remain.

Single life was fun for a while.  But it has gotten dull quick.  Being in a relationship had its ups and downs, but overall it was positive.  Hopefully I have learned from my mistakes and will not repeat them the next time.

Basically it all boils down to a simple ecological principle.  I have to find my niche.  Where that is and what it might be, I have some idea, but not totally.  

It's time to wind down for the day.
30th-Jan-2011 02:12 pm(no subject)
My room is messy.  I try to keep it organized, but when I get things in decent order my cat goes and pukes all over everything.  This is a reoccurring cycle that has happened perhaps 200 times.  Stupid vomit cat will gorge himself on food and then spew it out on my :floor, bed, weight-lifting bench, computer wires, clean clothes container (with clean clothes still in it), stairs.  

Animals are definitely outside creatures. 
20th-Jan-2011 07:54 pm(no subject)
So I was reading about Maslows hierarchy of needs (you know,  the triangle with the segments like basic needs, emotional needs, some other stuff, )  That article took me to another one that said you should explore and improve your talents so that you can lead a more fulfilling life.  Well that's all well and good. 

But I was just thinking- Do I have any talents?  I used to enjoy running, but I was mediocre at best, then I ruined the cartilage in my joints.  Next came my passion about biology.  I made it to being a junior before I washed out because my math skills are so horrible (not my fault, its genetics).  Then I thought about scuba diving.  I was a pretty good diver, but that is more of a skill than anything else.  Though I did always get complimented on my (underwater) swimming schools.  But I can't properly free-style swim on the surface.

So maybe a talent is just a skill that a person learns more quickly than others.  Or a genetic ability (like having a huge heart and proper bio-mechanics if you are a runner).  So by that logic, to be talented in something, you must first have a desire or passion in that area, then either be able to learn it very quickly (or very thoroughly), or have a genetic predisposition that makes you excel in that area.  

On a separate but somewhat related noted, I believe it was Stephen Hawking who was talking about what it takes to be a genius.  He said that a person must be intensely curious and have the ability to learn very fast. 

I better get ready for bed, I have to get up at 4am. 
18th-Jan-2011 01:09 am(no subject)
I don't know how to work the logistics of this.  I've been in contact with a company in Houston.  Took and subsequently passed my test that certifies me to perform ultrasound in refineries.  I thought I had failed the test (for some reason I think I fail all of them), and did not interview with that company while I was in Houston.  Anyways, its a new year.  I'm using up all my vacation time in February and March to learn how to use the newest ultrasound system.  This will take 2 weeks in Hoover, AL.  That is almost half-way to Houston.  But at the end of those two weeks, my time will be up.  How do I interview with this new company and yet not get in trouble for 'job abandonment' by not being back in Louisville in time?

Its such a long fucking drive.  15 hours of straight driving, about 18 with getting gas and eating and all that good stuff.  I could depart for Houston that Friday after I finish my course, and be there to interview on a Monday morning.  But what if something goes wrong and I dont get the job?  I'll have already missed one day of work back in Louisville, and will have to drive the majority of a day to get back.  But what if I do get it?  I'll need time to scout out living quarters and such.  There is no way around it, it is job abandonment either way.

I'll talk to my brother on the phone tomorrow.  He'll give me some good advice. 

I've put in 3 years at this place I'm working now.  Over the time I've been here, I've noticed a massive brain-drain.  Just can't retain quality, experienced employees.  Fortunately I've taken this opportunity to earn as many certifications as my brain would allow me.  I don't really enjoy the work very much anymore (environment perhaps), and while I wish I would have finished college, I am making more money than someone with a Masters degree in Fish and Wildlife biology.  And because of the declining industry in Louisville, my earning potential is actually less than half of what it would be in a huge petro-chemical complex like Houston.

Anyways, time for bed.
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