bunt sign

Wednesday, September 4, 2002

After a month of treading water, I'm finally getting back in the swim. This was the first day in weeks that I've had a sense of forward motion. Maybe just getting a new computer should have given me that feeling, but it didn't. Instead it felt like getting an electric lawnmower with a ten-foot cord. You can keep the grass nicely clipped, but you can't get very far. (Also, people will start to wonder about you.)

Today I got a load of laundry and a sinkful of dishes done, all while balancing a rubber ball on the end of my nose. That's a good day's work.

Now that I have all the important files on one computer, I'm getting ready to lose the old dial-up account that I've had for ten years. That means losing the email address I've had for ten years, and letting everyone know. This is scary, because I've lost track of who knows what about me. It's like trying to keep a lie straight, except that there isn't a lie involved here. It's just different layers of truth.

Those people in my address book who don't know about the journal - including anyone at work and a few others - also don't know that I have any email address other than the one provided by my old ISP. I've tried not to give them the buntsign address, because I'd hate for Tim (for example) to read what I've been writing about him the past few days. (Not that I harbor the illusion that I'll never be found out.)

This was another one of those back-and-forth Tim days, and the ordeal isn't over yet, but I'm not going to harp on that old complaint again. I'm dealing with it, and I'm in a much better frame of mind to do that now that I'm doing everything on one computer.

The move isn't totally finished, and eventually I'll use the old hard drive for file sharing, but this was the first day in a while that I've felt as if my work didn't take second place to the housekeeping side of things. It's a whole lot easier to do spreadsheets when they're all raked into one pile, and not blowing in the wind.

I'm on a few mailing lists under the address that I'm about to lose, and I spent some of my "spare" time today trying to change things over. The result is that I might be missing some messages, and I might be getting some twice. I'll try to clean this up before the old account goes silent, but it's probably inevitable that some correspondents will lose touch with me.

I doubt they'll worry much about where I've gone, since everyone I'm in close contact with knows that I've switched to the new DSL account. And most people I really want to hear from write to me using the buntsign address anyway. So the eventual trauma should be more in my head than anything involving loss of data or loss of contact.

After all, I'm the guy who's had the same job for sixteen years. I've had more chances to change my ISP than to change my job, and I haven't jumped at either one.

I like stability, constancy, steadiness. I like knowing that what's true today will be true tomorrow and next year. I like having all my ducks in a row and all my eggs in one brightly colored basket that's easy to spot from the other side of the room.

It took a leap of faith for me to dive into DSL, and it wouldn't have happened if I hadn't been a hundred percent sure it would improve my life. Even so, I've had remorse poking me in the ribs and regret tapping me on the shoulder during the transition period. I like variety, but I don't like change. Does that even make any sense? Nevertheless, it's the truth.


A cloud bank on the western horizon.

As I might have mentioned, I've spent most of the last week working with Tim on improving a letter he wrote to try to sell a big contract. He wrote the first draft, and after that his input has hardly done anything but slow down the process. We finally got to a final draft today, and I felt comfortable about asking him for some favors in return. I got a message from him at six o'clock this evening, with about six more hours' work in it. If you reckon that takes me up to midnight, you reckon like I reckon. Thanks, Tim, and I'm still waiting for what I asked for.

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One year ago: Company Manners
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