Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Your Friendly Neighborhood A+ Remote Support Technician...

I read an interesting news article that narcissism is on the rise. Blogs, YouTube, twitters and the like are blamed for it. Funny enough, one of the first things I wanted to do when I passed my latest certification exam was blog it.

So, everybody admire me!

Anna pointed out that I did not yet get a certification that I was halfway through. It is a two part test and I needed to take the second part. Now that I have one year left before I switch modes to Facilities Management and leave IT behind, it's now or never.

I signed up with one week to study. I casually looked at some study material, did some last minute cramming last night and as of 10:30am this morning became the latest person to join the ranks of certified CompTIA A+ Remote Support Technicians. And just to emphasize how great I am, guess how well I did... Go ahead, guess.

I got 874 out of 900. My math may be wrong, but I believe that's just a touch over 97%. Yeah, it's easy to be narcissistic when you are me...

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Big Promotion...Right...?

I've been keeping this on the "down low" until now in case it didn't happen or I would do something to mess it up. But now it's happening and I am free to speak.

Late last year a co-worker of mine, Joe, in a different department told me that he is now looking for his replacement (he is retiring). And one person he had his eye on was me. His department is Facilities Management and Project Management. Basically maintenance and construction.

When I was a kid, I used to do some side jobs with my dad. He was a finish carpenter. He was the sole employee of a contractor. On smaller tasks my dad did the work himself. On larger jobs he hired Mexicans or specialized contractors and would oversee the work. When I worked with him it was tuff work. Sadly, it was probably the most exercise I ever got as a kid. And as much as I liked the money, I really didn't like the work.

That was one of the reasons why I chose the work I did. I got the education and then a job in radio where there was no fear of breaking a sweat. I transitioned into computers again comfortable in the knowledge that I had an inside job. And now someone wants to take me out of that?

Well, truth be told, I was not so sure I would want the job at first. But I learned that it's more about managing the work and people. My new mentor says we are in the business of people, not buildings. That sold me. Well, that and there is a serious promotion involved.

So I took this special $900 talent assessment test last month (at the Church's expense). The results must have been positive because shortly after that, I got the call and was asked to come aboard.

On Monday it was announced that I would be the new protege. Joe will retire in about a year, so I will spend the next year at his side trying to soak everything up like a sponge. While doing this, I will still be fulfilling my full time responsibilities as the only IT guy in Guam. And until Joe leaves and I go solo, my pay will remain unchanged. Yeah, this is an investment for me.

Six months ago I was speaking with my niece, Sammie, about my work. She honestly thought that I did construction already. I am pretty sure an old post about a one time side job I did gave her this impression. Or do I have that vibe? Am I just destined to do this? My dad might have had me work with him over those horrible summers knowing something because he never really did get his money's worth. Is construction in my DNA? Well, either way, it's about to become so. Watch out world, Jared The Builder is about to be let loose!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter 2009...

Just because you don't have kids does not mean you cannot have Easter fun. We didn't really do much, however. We stayed home all day. We watched conference in the morning and slept in the early afternoon.

When we got up we boiled 6 eggs and began to create. Well, ok, I have to admit that we were not very creative this year. It was very low on the creativity scale when compared to previous years. But we had fun.

The only problem with making these eggs is that Anna won't eat them. The coloring seeps through the shell and slightly colors the egg below. It has never bothered me, or anyone else that I know. But Anna just can't bring herself to eat them once they are stained. Which means for the next week or two, I have to be creative and find ways to eat hard boiled eggs. Are there others who go to all that effort to make eggs but won't eat them because of the color?

It may take extra work, but I try to make sure I use every egg we make. I don't want to end up doing what we did once in my childhood home. My parents hid candy and real hard boiled Easter eggs around the house. The kids then scoured the place looking for hidden goodies. We found them all, except the one behind the couch. We did later find it - the following year on Easter. I don't remember how we determined it was a year old, but I'm pretty sure it involved a very disappointed and disgusted kid expecting something else.

Easter 09 All

Our collection of simple Easter Eggs this year.

Easter 09 Shrek

We bought a Shrek pack to make it easier for us to have nice looking eggs with minimal effort. Also, it was on sale last April for $1 and have been holding onto it for a year.

I make Shrek, Anna made the other two and she is very proud of her Fiona.

Easter 09 Others

The left is a "school teacher" style. The center is, well, what it is. The right one is Anna's "Ocean View" featuring the sun, a dolphin, air balloon and sailboat; all on a different scale.