Heading Out

Seeking the winds that help to sail on Shakespeare's tide.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Interesting Times

Since the Actress is at rehearsal this may be a little longer than usual.

Odd sort of a day, that began by getting to the office some five minutes after our visitors from Indiana. Then as we began our presentation we got into a discussion about how much money was left before we become toast. It turns out, after looking at what had been billed, and a couple of misunderstandings that encumbered salaries had been considered as spent. They therefore thought we were out of money with no more to come, but part of the work incomplete. After getting a number of printouts (though oddly unable to find the master spreadsheet) we were able to give reassurances that we had enough to get us through the end of the year, which meant we would provide the desired result. Which significantly changed the atmosphere though, thanks to the re-allocations of budget priorities in Indiana, we will not likely get any more funding in the near future for this particular program.

However there is a new line of funding opening and we were encouraged to at least send in a White Paper to see if we could stir up some interest if we had any radically new ideas. Thinking about it over lunch and this evening I do believe that we will likely do that, though whether it will get us funding remains to be seen.

I thus had spent the first part of the meeting trying to work out how I was going to make payroll for the folks being paid on this work, if in fact, our books were as badly off as projected. Turns out they weren't but it was a worrisome hour and a half. I still have that problem, but not now until the New Year, which gives some time for other sources to appear.

And in that line, the folk from Michigan called and they have finally started the paperwork to get that effort under way. And we have a small enquiry from a company in Belgium for whom we had done a fairly big project. They wonder if we have the capability to do the next phase. So another hasty meeting this afternoon, and off goes an e-mail saying yes and where should we meet ?

The problems of my colleague that dropped the hat seem more serious than initially apparent. He is definitely furious at our current numbers 1 and 2 and I think his current memos may hurt him more given the new change. Certainly after my experience yesterday we have few friends in those parts of this academic house.

Following on from which I get to give a command lecture next Tuesday, and am thinking about pointing it at the opportunity we are missing. Must think of that some more.

Chatted with the Advocate this evening, the cost of living in New York have finally led him to give up living alone for a while and so he will be sharing a larger apartment, and saving a fair bit over current rent. So he is packing. he is trying to get some research approved, but apparently paperwork is as bad there as here.

I also have to give a lecture at one of the local schools in the Fall about riding one of the Harry Potter trains to boarding school - its going to need some work since when I tried out some of the thoughts on a 6th grader today I obviously failed to connect, or to fully understand some of the book plots. Well I guess we'll just have to go back and read them again.

Thomas Frank is still a struggle to get through, and not very well written or argued but I am close enough to the end to want to get there. Given that the competition is "The Chernegor Pirates" book 2 of the Scepter of Mercy by Dan Chernenko, with a sea battle on the cover I fear that poor Thomas is going to have to wait another evening.

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