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I love my commute

commutingIt was about ten years, three companies, and at least eight bosses ago. My then boss walked in to my office — yes, I had walled office with its own door, not a cubicle — and rather sheepishly sat down in the chair on the other side of my desk.

“Uh oh,” I thought. “This can’t be good news.” My boss rarely came into my office. If he wanted to talk with me about something, I would always be summoned to his office.

And as there are in just about any organization these days, there were rumors floating around; rumors of downsizings, RIFs, corporate restructurings.

So when my boss came to my office and sat across from me with these sad, puppy-dog eyes, I was worried. I had two kids in college at the time.

We engaged in some small talk for a minute or two, which I also found troubling, since he was never a small talk sort of a guy. He was clearly nervous, which, in turn, made me even more nervous.

And then he got to the point. “You may have heard that we are going to be downsizing our facilities here,” he explained.

“Oh shit, here it comes,” I thought. “I’m getting canned.”

“And so we’re asking a few folks if they would be willing to work from home.”

Wait! What?

“We’ll set you up at your home with your laptop, a docking station, a monitor, a printer,” he continued. “If you need an ergonomic desk and chair, we’ll order them for you. We’ll reimburse you for your internet connection and for your home office phone.”

Had I just died and gone to heaven? I wanted to jump across my desk and kiss the man. Literally, that’s what I wanted to do.

“Give me a list of any office supplies you’ll need and we’ll have them delivered right to your home.”

This guy was still trying to sell me on the concept of telecommuting. He had me at “work from home.”

Here it is, ten years later. I no longer work for that boss. I don’t even work for that company anymore. But I still work from home.

So when I saw today’s Labor Day Daily Prompt, which asked us to talk about the one job we could never imagine ourselves doing, it was a no-brainer for me — but with a bit of a twist.

You see, it’s not about the kind of job I could never imagine myself doing. It’s about not being able to imagine doing any job that required a commute longer than from my bedroom to my home office.

It’s about no longer being able to imagine having to get dressed, get into a car, and fight rush hour traffic just to get to a physical location, a location from which I’d have to get back into a car and fight rush hour traffic just to get back home eight hours later.

And sure, you can substitute taking a train, bus, or subway for driving a car. It makes no difference. It’s still a time-consuming hassle.

I like my job. I love working from home. I can’t imagine doing a job — any job — if I could no longer work from home.

 
5 Comments

Posted by on September 1, 2014 in Blogging

 

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Liked your comment

Admin BarSo you know that little notification button on the far right of your admin bar that runs along the top of your blog?

It tells you, by turning orange and displaying a star (like) or a text bubble (comment), when someone has liked or commented on one of your posts.

And when you click on the orange button, you can see who it was who liked your post or, if someone commented, you can read the comment without actually going to the post on which the comment was made.

I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, right? But did you know that now you can “like” a comment right from there as well? Just click on the word “Like.” comments

Seriously, why waste your valuable time actually going back to the post on which someone commented and replying back when you can show your appreciation for his or her comment with just a simple mouse click?

This seems to be a recent “enhancement” that WordPress introduced. At least I think it’s recent, since I don’t remember being able to “like” comments this way prior to the last week or so. Then again, I’m not the most observant person around, so maybe this capability was there all along and I just never noticed it.

I suppose this is intended to be a convenience for you to let those who took the time to comment on your post that you liked their comments. And others can do the same to let you know, when you have made a comment on their posts, that they liked your comment. What’s not to like, right?

The only trouble with this new “convenience” is that it’s a little too convenient.

I’m getting a whole lot of notifications these days that people “liked” my comments. More, in fact, than I am getting notified that people replied to my comments.

Liked your commentPersonally, I’d rather get a comment “reply” than a comment “like.” Even if it’s just something like, “Thanks for stopping by and commenting.”

Yeah, I know, we’re all busy people and this is a quick and easy way to tell someone who took the time to comment on your post that you liked the comment.

But isn’t blogging all about engaging in a dialogue? Having a discussion? Sharing perspectives?

And I admit that when I’ve been pressed for time, I have, once or twice, “liked” a comment myself, rather than taking the time to reply to that comment.

But it’s sort of a lazy thing to do, don’t you think?

Is anyone else bothered by this “new and improved” WordPress feature?

Or is it just me?

 
55 Comments

Posted by on September 1, 2014 in Blogging

 

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As seen on Facebook

I saw this meme on Facebook and I thought it was pretty funny and kind of telling about our society today.

Einstein and SmartphonesBut then, as I am wont to do, I wondered whether or not Albert Einstein actually said what he is alleged to have said in the meme.

It turns out that, according to the comprehensive collection of quotations, The Ultimate Quotable Einstein, from Princeton University Press, there is no substantive evidence that Einstein ever made that statement.

And then I came across another Albert Einstein meme that I absolutely know to be a true quotation of his. Well, if not, it should be:

Don't believe everything you read on the internetAt the risk of sounding like I’m totally and obnoxiously pedantic, the above meme, as great as the message is, is grammatically incorrect. The word “quote” should be “quotation.”

 
31 Comments

Posted by on August 31, 2014 in Blogging, Humor, Society

 

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Passing judgment

passing judgmentOh yeah, that’s me, all right!

And also on whether or not they use the Oxford/serial comma!

 
32 Comments

Posted by on August 31, 2014 in Blogging

 

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Age is just a number

AgingLast month, one of the Daily Prompts said “age is just a number” and then asked whether it’s a number I care about or ignore.

I responded to the prompt with a somewhat tongue-in-cheek post about the wonderfulness of senior discounts. Don’t get me wrong; senior discounts are great. But I avoided answering the question.

What I am finding out is that, while age may just be a number, it is also a label. It labels me as part of a group. I’m a Baby Boomer. I’m a Gen-Xer, a Gen-Yer, a Millennial, a Gen-whatever.

I’m a child. I’m a teenager. I’m an adolescent. I’m a young adult. I’m middle aged. I’m a senior citizen.

My age categorizes and classifies me as something. But is that really what I am? Is that all I am?

Okay, so based upon my age, I actually am a “senior citizen.” But what does that tell you about who I am? What I believe? How I’m supposed to behave?

One blogger on whose posts I comment frequently was blown away when he found out how old I am. He had no idea that I wasn’t around his age — and he’s a whole lot younger than I am. I mean, seriously, a lot younger.

That made me feel good, but at the same time, it saddened me. I guess the expectation is that because I’m a senior citizen, I’m supposed to act and sound and write my age — simply because I am that age.

But while my hair may have turned gray and then fallen out never to return to its former glory, and while my vision isn’t as good as it used to be, and while my hearing is not as acute as it used to be, and while I have wrinkles where my skin was once smooth, and while I can’t run as fast or sleep as well or eat all the crap I used to be able to eat without repercussions, I don’t feel a day older than I did when I was a “young adult.”

But because of my age, because I’m identified as a senior citizen, people’s expectations of me are different from those for people who are a different age than am I.

And I guess, just as I do with my tinnitus, my failing hearing, and my balding head, I will just learn to live with it.

It is what it is — a label to which people attach meaning.


These ruminations on age were prompted by this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, which instructs us to write a post about “young, old, or anything to do with age.”

 
51 Comments

Posted by on August 30, 2014 in Blogging, Society

 

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Mesmerizing murmurations

My daughter posted this video on her blog today. Honestly, I was totally mesmerized when I saw this video and now I can’t stop watching it.

I decided that I need to share it with you.

Do yourself a big favor. Take a few minutes, get comfortable, and watch the video. It’s hypnotic; it will transport you to a whole different mental state.

Oh yeah, you should link to her post, which is all about birds, bats, and bugs. She loves bats and is looking forward to eating bugs. My daughter!

 
13 Comments

Posted by on August 29, 2014 in Blogging

 

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Preposition precision

prepositions“How often do you get to (or have to) be awake for sunrise?” This is the question posed in today’s Daily Prompt.

I’m not sure how to answer that question because I’m not sure what the question really is. Is it asking how often I get up for sunrise? Or how often I get up at sunrise? What about by sunrise? Before sunrise?

You may think I’m being petty, but I’m not. These are important distinctions. If one gets up for sunrise, that means he or she is getting up for a specific purpose. In this case, that specific purpose is to experience the sunrise.

But if someone gets up at sunrise, by sunrise, or before sunrise, it just might mean that, like me, he or she is an early riser. Most mornings I am usually up at, by, or sometimes even before sunrise. On rare occasions, I can sleep to well after sunrise.

But getting up for sunrise is a different story. I can’t remember the last time I specifically got up for a sunrise. In fact, I don’t know that I’ve ever woken up specifically for a sunrise.

So precision in prepositions is very important.

“When was the last time you sat in a car?” is a different question from “when was the last time you sat on a car?”
Doing something for someone else is very different from doing something to someone else.
Being on the inside is not the same as being on the outside.
Looking up to someone is not the same as looking down at someone.

So due to the lack of precision and clarity in the question, I have decided not to participate in today’s Daily Prompt.

 
27 Comments

Posted by on August 29, 2014 in Blogging

 

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