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01/22/2003

Ups and Downs of A Long Day

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Ahhh, where to begin? I figure the beginning is a good place.

I got up at 4 AM this morning because I had to drive up to Rhode Island this morning. It is always easier to get to RI from New Jersey before any rush hours. When I first started driving up there, I made the mistake of thinking that if I missed the NYC metro area rush hour, I would be fine for the rest of the way. But the reality is that there is always a rush hour somewhere - even in the long, lonely stretches of Eastern Connecticut. If I leave my house by 4:30 or 5:00 in the morning, I can usually arrive in the parking lot of our RI plant right around 8:00. And today's drive was no different.

In fact today's drive was a little better because I was Mr. Plan-ahead yesterday. Not only did I pack all my stuff up last night, I even had a little breakfast prepared so I could grab it and run first thing in the morning. I usually stop at my local bagel store on these trips. But I could never get the timing down correctly. It used to be that I would get there just as the first batch of morning bagels would come out of the oven. Now that sounds all yummy and perfect but actually it didn't always work out that way. Because whatever spread you put on a inner-core-of-the-sun hot bagel is invariably going to find its way onto your clothing. And your hands. Possibly down your face. Down the seat of your car. Everywhere really. Once I learned about this hazard I used to buy my bagel and let it sit in the bag on the car seat next to me. Which is really just a form of torture. But as I started to leave earlier and earlier in the morning, I reached the point where I would arrive at the bagel shop and there would be no bagels. Not ready yet. Just put into the oven. "We've got some nice muffins from the day before, would you like one of those?" Bleaagh. So yesterday Mr. Plan-ahead bought two bagels - one with butter and one plain and uncut. This morning I sliced that baby in half, slammed it into the toaster and heaped up the butter when it came out. This method worked well because I was in control of the temperature this time.

The drive itself was uneventful. That was good because everything after that was a big event. I needed to unpack the server and get Windows 2000 up and running on it. And then install SQL Server 2000. So I lug the damn thing upstairs and get it unpacked. Everything went smothly with the unpacking. But every conceivable thing that could go wrong with an installation of Windows 2000 Server went wrong. I've never had so much trouble with an installation before. From getting the RAID 1 set up to not even being able to find the right Product Key (evil, evil Product Key), it was an obstacle course of the worst kind. Blah. Why can't things be simple. Having said that, installing a default version of SQL Server 2000 was quite simple. And painless.

A messy server room
My new laptop

I skip out of there right at 5:00 PM because I have a date with the Coolest Person in Rhode Island. Diann doesn't at my company anymore. She was "let go" about two months ago. Claudine and I refer to Diann as "my work girlfriend". I think we'll have to come up with another nickname for her because since Diann and I don't actually work together anymore that just makes her "my girlfriend". Which would be an odd thing for my wife to call someone. We met up for two of our favorite things: sushi and beer. And more beer. And then we went somewhere else for more beer. And a really bad BBQ chicken pizza.