Tues. Mar. 19, 2019 -chilly

Chilly out this am. Yesterday got nice in the afternoon, a bit cooler than comfortable, but nice and dry with clear skies and sun.

I’m volunteering today at the kids’ school, so I have to get ready.

The world continues on in the same way it has been. That means ‘times a wasting’.

Get prepped!

n

48 thoughts on “Tues. Mar. 19, 2019 -chilly”

  1. Last week we took possession of our bug-out / retirement home in rural small town Oklahoma. We bought it from a church who left EVERYTHING, much to our surprise. Not just major appliances but washer/dryer, fridge, freezer, lawnmower, edger, weed eater(s), leaf blower, ladder, and dining room suite. The place is move-in ready. This will be our home when we retire or a bug-out location if things hit the fan before then. I will be moving my LTS supplies there over the next year and stocking the bunker there with more.

  2. @HC: Good for you. We’re working on it – building permit applied for, current house being photographed for the sales brochures tomorrow. With a bit of luck, we’ll be in our place in a year…

  3. ” burn until it runs out of fuel. ”

    that’s the impression I’m getting from listening to the scanner. They are trying to cool adjacent tanks, but as soon as they get hot enough to vent, the vented material catches fire, then the tank is at risk. or if the fire is too hot, they have to move back and relocate equipment. They did that several times last night.

    They are still having problems keeping crews equipped with foam, and keeping the water supply going. They were using a fire boat last night. They are worried about their 10″line which feeds a manifold. Shut off too many sprays, and the increase in pressure could blow the line. They have to coordinate pretty closely, and there is multi minute lag between asking for a change and getting it.

    n

  4. @Brad
    Congrats to you also. Hope all goes well.
    I think we will keep the current house and rent it through an agency. We don’t have a huge equity we aren’t loosing anything. I’ve always wished I’d held onto my previous homes as rentals. Plus we don’t need to update it quite as much if it’s a rental.

  5. @Nick
    That was fun. Living with an English Professor for the last few decades have made me more sensitive to the language.

  6. I think we will keep the current house and rent it through an agency. We don’t have a huge equity we aren’t loosing anything. I’ve always wished I’d held onto my previous homes as rentals. Plus we don’t need to update it quite as much if it’s a rental.

    We had a rent house in Dallas when we moved back to Sugar Land. 300 miles each way. If I had a dollar for each time I got “the checks in the mail”. After five days I would drive up to Dallas to get the rent which would magically appear in 50s, 20s, 10s, and 5s ($750/month). Plus anytime there was a problem, I am on the road again, burning vacation time.

    But, we bought the house for $79,950 at the peak of the market in 1985 and could not sell it for $65,000 in 1989. So we rented it out. We did meet a lot of “interesting” people. Learned a lot of lessons about how and when people lie to you. Basically, if people owe you money and can’t (or won’t) pay, they are lying when their lips are moving.

    I still wonder how those tenants broke the master bedroom toilet bowl ? My best guess was they dropped a hard and sharp object into it.

  7. I don’t usually link the stupid contests but the crowd here is into english and grammar.

    19/20. Tripped over capitol/capital. 🙁

  8. @Lynn
    I’m not cut out to be a landlord either. That’s why we will use an agency to handle all the messy details like collect rent (or evict) and deal with 3 am plumbing emergencies. I have my own small rental agency in Oklahoma to manage my own properties. It’s run by my son but that’s too far from Memphis so I will select a local. My son is a SUPER landlord, able to listen patiently to problems and complaints and serve evictions notices without a qualm. Hard and fast rule is “Follow the lease agreement”. If you are late you pay the fee. If you missed a payment you can expect an eviction notice. I don’t care if your baby’s sick and your mother is in hospital, you pay or find somewhere else to sleep.

  9. I still wonder how those tenants broke the master bedroom toilet bowl ? My best guess was they dropped a hard and sharp object into it.

    I guess that the drunk husband could have broken the toilet bowl with his teeth when he was throwing up in it when he tied one on every night. He would start drinking each night at the wife’s bar (according to the wife after she threw him out).

  10. When we moved out here, the house in Austin was a mess. As part of the trying to sell it process, the County had to inspect the septic system. We had it dug up and pumped. And waited. And waited some more.
    When does the inspector show? The day after a weekend where we had six inches of rain. Funny thing, when I saw him get out of his car I knew we were about to get screwed.

    So of course the roof gutters overflowed and flooded the hole where the tank sat. And of course the front yard was almost a swamp.

    We did the rent thing. Never again.

    In the first three months they “broke” the guts in the hall bath toilet and the sink faucet. The toilet and the faucet were less than a year old.

  11. Ah, today sucks worse than yesterday’s BOD meeting. Today, I gave two employees the option of taking half pay or getting laid off. The office manager and I took the half pay option with me going back to the first of the year (gonna be a negative paycheck at the end of the month).

    Sigh. Some days you just want to pull the bedsheets over your head until 5pm.

  12. In the first three months they “broke” the guts in the hall bath toilet and the sink faucet. The toilet and the faucet were less than a year old.

    Rent houses need to be that concrete house in the termite commercials. No plumbing. No a/c. No dishwasher. No stove.

  13. Casual land-lording is not for the faint of heart. Contract Property Management works like Harold’s son, by the numbers. I have a new gig with a company that is mainly storage units and a few apartments and retail spaces. The Bloss was phone-ing delinquents for their storage fees, a thankless task.

  14. Ah, today sucks worse than yesterday’s BOD meeting. Today, I gave two employees the option of taking half pay or getting laid off. The office manager and I took the half pay option with me going back to the first of the year (gonna be a negative paycheck at the end of the month).

    We’re still looking for C++ talent if Junior Programmer wants to see a bit more of the tech world but still be within weekend trip range to help out. The office will be at the Met Center near the Austin Airport by June.

    Ex military is not a problem. As for my personal situation, as they say, YMMV. I was not exactly in a position to negotiate, and I believe there is some regret about what was said to me during the hiring process.

    It doesn’t sound like you compete in our field, but Junior Programmer would have to read the non-compete paperwork carefully and discuss the situation with management if things reached the hiring point.

  15. “Never mind that New York is neither.”

    Or the question with the incorrect “The police has…” Still, a fun challenge.

    n

  16. @lynn, that sucks. Is it a temporary ‘waiting for the contracts to get signed’ or a real slowdown?

    Can you break off or repurpose any chunks into something standalone the the “office manager” can try selling?

    n

  17. We’re still looking for C++ talent if Junior Programmer wants to see a bit more of the tech world but still be within weekend trip range to help out. The office will be at the Met Center near the Austin Airport by June.

    Ex military is not a problem. As for my personal situation, as they say, YMMV. I was not exactly in a position to negotiate, and I believe there is some regret about what was said to me during the hiring process.

    It doesn’t sound like you compete in our field, but Junior Programmer would have to read the non-compete paperwork carefully and discuss the situation with management if things reached the hiring point.

    Please send me the job listing and I will give it to the Senior Junior Programmer.

  18. @lynn, that sucks. Is it a temporary ‘waiting for the contracts to get signed’ or a real slowdown?

    Can you break off or repurpose any chunks into something standalone the the “office manager” can try selling?

    It is two problems, customers paying real late, and a genuine slowdown. Six months ago, our website contacts dropped from six a day to the present one a day.

    Warning: Recessions in the oil patch precede recessions in the whole country by a year or two at most.

    We’ve done plenty of breaking off our software over the years and customizing it for users. There is always a angle or five that we have missed though. I’ve been working on a variant for a Fortune 20 company at their request for the last year. But their user requirements keep on changing and we don’t have a deal yet.

  19. Wife’s partners have decided that instead of buying out the company, they need to facilitate its sale to a bigger player. Their book was half of last year’s. Transition to the new company will be the first of the month, so there will be some changes here too.

    Being part of big company should allow them to ‘bundle’ with big company’s lines and get projects that they were being progressively squeezed out of. there is an ownership path with the new company, but obviously not the same as being a partner in a firm with 2 others. OTOH, we (collectively) won’t be on the hook for the $1mm USD nut per year either.

    The real economy is def NOT the stock market, and is not doing well. EVERYTHING I see points to that.

    n

  20. Wife’s partners have decided that instead of buying out the company, they need to facilitate its sale to a bigger player. Their book was half of last year’s. Transition to the new company will be the first of the month, so there will be some changes here too.

    Being part of big company should allow them to ‘bundle’ with big company’s lines and get projects that they were being progressively squeezed out of. there is an ownership path with the new company, but obviously not the same as being a partner in a firm with 2 others. OTOH, we (collectively) won’t be on the hook for the $1mm USD nut per year either.

    Man, that is a ruinous drop in sales. I thought our drop in sales of 19% last year was bad. Yup, we are looking for a savior also. Good for them to find one, I hope it works out like they wanted.

    I told my partners yesterday that I was not ready to retire but I had the minimum amount of money to do so if needful. They retired 20 years ago (they are 80 and 81). I’ll be 59 in a couple of months, I doubt that I could get another programming job even with my PE license (rare in the engineering software world).

  21. I hope so too 🙂

    Candy corn is mostly corn sweetener, si’? price of corn went up with the ethanol subsidy didn’t it?

    Wife had years where they had trouble finding places to stick all the overage on bids, now everyone is dropping their shorts just to get the work.

    I’m def feeling a cold coming on. It’s not just allergies, I can’t fool myself anymore. Need to get to sleep.

    n

  22. Candy corn is mostly corn sweetener, si’? price of corn went up with the ethanol subsidy didn’t it?

    No !!!!!!!!!111!!!!!!, Candy Corn is suppose to be honey, none of that nasty corn sweetener !!!!!!!

    About 12 to 15 of them little candy corns get my brain restarted for a few hours when needful. And the needful is getting more and more often as I age. And, I can quit any time I want to, I just don’t want to.

  23. Wife had years where they had trouble finding places to stick all the overage on bids, now everyone is dropping their shorts just to get the work.

    Oh gosh, we have the same story. My biggest customer and we are negotiating a new five year deal right now. But they told me last Friday that it is going to be a two or three year deal only since they “don’t” do five year deals anymore. Of course, three years ago, their CTO sat across the table from me (he “dropped” into our meeting) and told me that we were way too small for them, a 350,000 person firm across 100 countries. Turns out that they still need us to make things happen for them even though they are struggling too.

    Whoa, they are 379,000 people with 83 billion euros in sales last year. That is not bad. I would like for them to buy us in the short term just for the IP.

  24. I’m def feeling a cold coming on. It’s not just allergies, I can’t fool myself anymore. Need to get to sleep.

    Take a long shower and get some steam in your lungs. Twice per day !

  25. “I would like for them to buy us in the short term just for the IP.”

    That might be a good exit strategy, if you’re looking for one. Do you have that CTO’s card?

  26. I told my partners yesterday that I was not ready to retire but I had the minimum amount of money to do so if needful. They retired 20 years ago (they are 80 and 81). I’ll be 59 in a couple of months, I doubt that I could get another programming job even with my PE license (rare in the engineering software world).

    My age (50) hasn’t been a problem nearly as much as the professional experience gap in my resume from Vantucky. That ended up being nearly seven years between the time I left Death Star Telephone and the morning I started at CGI. I don’t even count the Seattle fiasco since I walked out after they realized that they had me over a barrel and demoted me twice.

    A lot of C/C++ jobs are going begging right now, and high performance code has never been more important to some industries such as finance. Work some Boost objects into your product, put that experience on your resume, and you would be amazed at the emails which start appearing in your inbox.

  27. It all sounds like fighting for a place on a sinking ship to me.

    There must be some shops out there that exist to come in and do what the normal course of business can’t do. It was true in two of the three industries I worked in.

    Much more fun and satisfying to be one of “the pros from Dover.”

    n

  28. We’ve done plenty of breaking off our software over the years and customizing it for users. There is always a angle or five that we have missed though. I’ve been working on a variant for a Fortune 20 company at their request for the last year. But their user requirements keep on changing and we don’t have a deal yet.

    The bigger the company, the more ridiculously cheap they are in my experience, and the requirements will never be met. We’ve probably dealt with some of the same customers since Death Star Telephone sold VPN software to the oil industry.

    You’re really screwed if the people you deal with have work from home jobs and their performance standards are fungible. The Fortune 20 have been infested by Work From Home Mommy Mafia members for a couple of decades, but men are increasingly catching on to the racket.

  29. Please send me the job listing and I will give it to the Senior Junior Programmer.

    I will check with our in-house recruiter when I have access to my work laptop. I didn’t bring it with us this week. Our website has been unreliable lately, and we often have postings which don’t appear publicly.

    If Senior Junior Programmer receives a contact from a headhunter company regarding a position which sounds like us in Austin, I’d recommend taking a pass. I believe going through the headhunter is a core part of my compensation problem since they receive 50-100% of first year salary following a probation period.

    Yup, I get a recruiting bonus. I’m up front with that, however, as well as all the caveats.

  30. It all sounds like fighting for a place on a sinking ship to me.

    My standard is that they don’t operate out of WeWork. You would be amazed at how many big companies rent co-working space in Austin to justify the trips for the semi-annual major bacchanalia (SXSW, ACL) and minor weekend mass quantity consumption events (CoTA races, and, coming soon, Major League Soccer at The Domain) in between.

  31. co-working space- for people who are trying to legitimize the illegitimate or for those companies who don’t trust their employees to work from home. Not my idea of fun.

    n

  32. Well, as I read you gentlemen it seems that (in software) we went from guilds to put out system as England in late 1700, and to Lancaster and textile.

    Our late host saw it before, and, maybe it was a reason he got out from IT to home schooling.

    Short answer (or thought) get out ASAP, long answer, Big ones only make deals with Big ones, and only tolerate lesser ones if they are the only ones and/or replacement costs are risky, but, since finance departments are the only really operating the company, they penalize with extending payments. They dont do that to Oracle or Microsoft usually.

    I have 61 so I have seen this (forgive my rant) and Lynn the only way out is stating clearly this or nothing, and working a year for a promise of contract? its a hobby. If you have the money and no further liabilities, get out or money.

    In some way I had a situation 20 years ago, my former director in a Big one said, you dont want to go overseas, but you cant say no, so, ask money, if they need you, they pay, if no, you said yes they say no and thy must live with that, in the end they give me money.

    And you are true, big oil crisis precedes economy crisis, and with China going down on account deficit commercial wars are on the way.

    We are going to see a lot of fun

    PS forgive my rant and my english

  33. It all sounds like fighting for a place on a sinking ship to me.

    The big problem is that so much programming work is being outsourced to India and other such places. The programmers in the USA business put together a design document and the offshore programmers code it up and get it to running. Except, they don’t get it to working. The offshore programmers cobble a bunch of meaningless crap together and call that the product. The USA business gets the code and spends six months trying to get it to work. They eventually give up and look for another offshore programming shop to do the job on the cheap. Wash, rinse, repeat.

  34. I have 61 so I have seen this (forgive my rant) and Lynn the only way out is stating clearly this or nothing, and working a year for a promise of contract? its a hobby.

    It does sound like a hobby, doesn’t it.

  35. Short answer (or thought) get out ASAP, long answer, Big ones only make deals with Big ones, and only tolerate lesser ones if they are the only ones and/or replacement costs are risky, but, since finance departments are the only really operating the company, they penalize with extending payments. They dont do that to Oracle or Microsoft usually.

    Sad but true. You have the gist of it.

  36. A lot of C/C++ jobs are going begging right now, and high performance code has never been more important to some industries such as finance. Work some Boost objects into your product, put that experience on your resume, and you would be amazed at the emails which start appearing in your inbox.

    I just want to finish and ship version 16.00 of our software. It is over a year late now.

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