Heading Out

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

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

The green grass in the other field

At the discussion on retirement this morning there were probably at least four staff members to each faculty member present. I don't think that there was anything new said, though Specialist, on the way out, realized a question it was too late to ask.(It related to how unused sick days count toward length of service. Three different folk had heard three different answers from the speaker). A colleague asked if I had calculated my pension "I have a spreadsheet" I replied, "and after a lousy meeting with the upper Administration I usually come back and look at it." At a certain point when you discount from your current salary the pension you might be making, the pay seems awfully low. What was also eye-opening is how many of my group are thinking about going, or at least starting to make the calculation.

Today saw more efforts to try and get a couple of contracts finished close to time. Since there is little I personally can do it is more talking to the folk involved and making sure that there are no bottlenecks. In which regard one of them called for use of the toy, and disconcertingly it failed to do what was expected. It took a lot of the day for Specialist to realize why, and it may take all day tomorrow to fix, and it was just one of those - who'd a thunk it moments. But the monitors will be here next week and they all have to be running. A couple of folk were in most of last night, and we may get one ready to rumble, if not both, tomorrow.

So after a fairly fraught day I sat down to catch up on e-mail etc. The Dauphin responded to the memo. But sadly only by defending what he took to be a negative comment on a trivial part of the overall. That is not going to help, but increasingly I begin to feel that he does not have an overall sense of the situation.

Then as I downloaded the 97 pages of homework for the other blog I realized I had forgotten to have my door closed at day's end. In strolled a faculty member that should have been getting one of those two contracts finished, but who had been on vacation for a couple of weeks. For one reason or another there went an hour and a bit, and then a second faculty rather shamefacedly shambled in. His particular sin (as it had come to me in fragments over the day) was that there had been a significant issue early this morning. He had apparently done, shall we say a "Bolton" and had been heard throughout three floors of the building. So that took another while. Oh I also spent an hour with a visiting ex-student grateful that we had helped get him a new job, and helped him with some needed information. And so that was how my day went, a little advice here, a litle chastening there. There was also watching and realizing the problem of an ageing and possibly ailing staff person, and trying to assess how this will change things. And trying to decide how to handle it.

So needless to say when I eventually did get home, ol Jimbo's AU's were immediately necessary. And, rather nicely, the Nurse had sent a shirt to go with the full kilt (though I did not think I was quite that large). I also have the large shoulder pin, and so I guess that I am running out of excuses as to why I can't wear it.

Hmm, I have been waiting for the Congressman from Maryland who is supposed to talk on energy for the past hour, while watching CSPAN with the sound off. The chamber has about four folk in it apparently. Maybe it's time to try and finish the "Bean" story (Shadow of the Giant) by Orson Scott Card instead, and where did I put that little bottle?

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