September 15th, 2004

insane

No Fear

This is something that keeps coming to me full circle in my life.

No Fear.

I know that somebdy uses this as a marketing slogan, which is in a way unfortunate because it cheapens the meaning.

What it means to me is that you should never make decisions in your life based on fear. Fear of the dark, fear of being alone, fear of losing your job. If you give in to fear, you let something have power over you.

Oddly, I was reminded of this by last night's episode of Collapse )

It just reminded me that indeed, I have made the right choice in breaking up with Barb.

Had I tried to stay with her, it would have been out of fear. Fear of being alone, fear of being lonely, fear of not having someone. And that is really a shitty reason to be in a relationship.

I am alone. I am lonely. I don't have someone in my life.

And it's okay.

I'm not dying. I still laugh. I get things done. I go see movies. I talk to friends. I go to work, I pee, I come home. I pet my dog when I can. Life hasn't changed all that much, other than the changes I've made.

The next big fear is making a living. A lot of my job decisions have been based around fear. There was a period when I was at risk of foreclosure, and in the not-so-distant past. I have let that fear intimidate me into not developing my own business the way that I should have.
It's not a baseless fear. I've had a failed business. It's hard not to take the failure of the business as a personal failure. And I have to admit, I am something of a sucker for a steady paycheck. But I am not satisfied. My creativity is stifled. I need an outlet, and I'm very good at what I do.
So I am exploring different options. Making movies is a part of that, as well as making props and sets and hardware and software and other special-interest tools of the trade.
I am a good engineer, a good technician. A good craftsman, and even an artist in some sense. But I am not a good businessman. I am not good at marketing, or customer relations, or accounting, or general administration.
I need to couple with other folks who are good at these things. Other folks who understand the dissatisfaction of working for "the man" and are willing to take some risk.

And I don't know where to find them.

I can do a lot of up-front development work. That is pretty much ongoing, with plans in the works for upcoming projects, but eventually I'll need to move beyond that.

Short term:
I need to recover my space. That I can do. I already have help.
I need to organize and plan. I will need some help with that for sure.
I need to be strong and keep motivated. That's probably the hardest of all, because it's so daunting.

Welcome to the ride of your life.
insane

(no subject)

So today I found out the "real" reason that my friend Rakesh was not renewed.

Apparently someone took umbrage with the fact that he tends to e-mail questions rather than meeting the person face to face. Apparently he sent 40 e-mails in a month!

And this was a problem?

Even if you look at 20 working days being a month, 40 e-mails is an average of 2 a day.

And even if that was a problem, don't you think that a better solution would be to actually talk to him about it, rather than essentially firing him?

The rest of the stupid stuff that this company does I can write off to inexperience, ineptitude, and a number of other slothful things.

Resorting to termination as a first response to an issue that is so minor isn't something that I can write off so easily. It isn't something that you learn from working in the industry, it's a basic human decency thing. Respect for a person.

However, it goes a little deeper. Of the development team on this project, our little group of five is isolated in a separate building. Anything between buildings, e-mail is a perfectly reasonable means of communication.

So if we assume that the issue was that he was communicating by e-mail with one of our own small team, it narrows the field considerably. Of the five others, there are only three that he had a lot of dealing with:
Me.
Helmut.
Andy.

I like Rakesh. He asks a lot of questions when he doesn't necessarily understand something. About half of them are by e-mail. Many times that is the most efficient way of putting forth information.
His grasp of the english language isn't perfect, but it's a whole hell of a lot better than my... whatever his native language is.
I know that I didn't complain.
Helmut had very little interaction with him overall, and when he did, it was primarily face-to-face. And Helmut is pretty even-tempered.
That leaves Andy.
Andy, who seemed to take a disliking to Rakesh from day one. Andy, who has gone out of his way to be exceptionally harsh to Rakesh in reviews-- unnecessarily so.
Andy who a few weeks ago got fed up with Rakesh's progress on a unit test plan and took it over completely.
(ding! ding! ding!)

I have watched Andy with other non-white developers. He seems to have a special disdain for folks from India and the surrounding area. Nothing that I can nail outright, but more of an attitude.

However, even if I chalk it up to personal bigotry, there is still no excuse for the company to operate in such a manner as to use termination as a first response to any but the most heinous offenses.

I am livid. I very nearly walked out after seeing this, and I'm still considering the ramifications. I have lost any minimal respect I had for this company, and I know that I will not be extending my contract after it ends next.

I am updating my resume for sure. And I think I'll start the job-hunting process early.
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insane

(no subject)

It's a hell of a week.

Randomness: a TV commercial that is playing down here has my friend Pat in it. Pat starred in our "Partners not Customers" video that was produced by my now-defunct production company, and was also in "St. Valentine's Day Mascara" in which I played several roles including a diaper-clad cupid who sang the blues from a jail cell and was ultimately put to death in an electric chair, which is now sitting in the back of the house underneath the canopy.

I don't want to go to sleep. I want to go out and get drunk or get high and find some slutty girls and wallow in debauchery.

Instead, I will go to bed like a good little machine and read some dimestore novel for a while.

Damn and blast.