Saturday, June 29, 2013

Who decided desks should be 29" high?

I worked from home yesterday and it was a bit painful.  The desk I have is too high.

Yes, it used to have a keyboard tray.  But I don't like keyboard trays.  Maybe it's because I grew up with typewriters, but I don't like having my keyboard in my lap.

And if I use the keyboard tray, I am too far away from the monitor to see anything.  So I have to have the monitor sitting right at the front edge of the desk.  In which case, I might as well have a desk that is only 10" wide.

The tray is too low.  The desk is too high.  The porridge is too hot.

I know.  I know.  I'm being fussy.  But seriously, who decided desks should be 29" high?

I have only worked at one company where the desks were adjustable. Who logically thinks the same desk height works for me at 5'2" and my friend at 6'4"?

The chairs adjust.  But then my feet can't touch the ground and I need a foot rest.  My home chair is at the top of its adjustment but I am still an inch or more lower than is ergonomically correct.

I can't say I made an exhaustive search, but I searched Amazon and I visited Staples.  Almost all the desks are 29" high.  Some are 30".  A couple were 28 1/2".  I need something about 25" high.

Amazon had some adjustable desks, but it was mostly the working surface that adjusted, at an angle.  Those were probably intended for draftsmen.  And I didn't like the way they looked.

Yes, I could do custom.  But that is quite expensive.  At least in Arizona where wood is pricey.  So I am going to try to modify a ready to assemble desk and see if I can make it work.

My new job allows me to work half the time from home.  I can't be in agony the whole time.

Wish me luck.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

First week back to work

I've been laid off for 19 weeks.  Since I had severance enough for 16 of those weeks, I was able to enjoy the longest span of time off I've had in 20 years.  And now I know I will be good at doing retirement.

Monday was my first day back to work.  I was in software development before I got laid off.  This is similar, but it is automated testing.  Programming with a QA flavor.

I'd forgotten how much time working takes out of your day.  Not just the 8 hours of work, but the hour spent at work for lunch time and the hour and a half spent commuting - if the traffic is good. And that doesn't count the time spent getting ready for work.

How did I manage to get anything done at home when I worked before?  I didn't even do my normal gym classes this week. I had missed my dogs and spent my evenings making up to them. And they had missed me.

But not as much as I had feared.  The dogs weren't frantic or anxious when I finally came back home.  They were happy I was home.  But they had managed quite well without me.

That's when I remembered that a great portion of their day is spent sleeping, even when I am at home.

Work itself went well.  The people are nice and very helpful.  The facility is new, clean and shiny.  I have new software to learn.  And I have to learn how to use my Mac Book laptop.  I've always been a Windows girl.

But overall, a good week.  I won't go so far as saying I'm glad to be working.  I would love to win the lottery and retire.

But since I have to work, this is a really good interesting job.

Monday, June 17, 2013

No one asked about my black eye

I posted Maybe Bogie Needs Professional Training when he pulled me off my feet and I landed - hard.  The most painful damage was to my hands. The most obvious damage was from the impact of my cheek onto the sidewalk curb. 

 I looked like I was in a bar fight.  There was a scrape on my cheek.  And I had a gloriously purple shiner that ran from under my eye to part of my eyelid. 

I had to sign papers for my new job the next day.  I covered up the bruises and scrapes as best I could, but it was still obvious.  And no one asked what happened.  

The cover-up made my eye water so I stopped covering the bruise.  I went to the gym.  I went shopping.  And no one who didn't already know me asked what happened. 

I had a funny version of the story all prepared.  But no one asked.

I haven't lived in a smallish town for more than 20 years.  In my hometown, almost everyone would have known I wasn't the victim of domestic abuse.  I don't know if it's the size of the town or a sign of the times that people won't ask what happened.  

Are they afraid they will put a domestic violence victim on the spot?  

Or do they just not care?

I had a funny version of the story all prepared.  But no one asked.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Not good at following medical instructions

So I posted Maybe Bogie Needs Professional Training when he pulled me off my feet and I landed - hard.  I've gotten over my sense of betrayal and my concern that maybe he really is too big for me to handle.

Several friends commented on Facebook that their dogs had done the same thing to them.  And their dogs range in size from 40 to 80 pounds.

So the fault doesn't lie with the 130 pound dog, but with the inattention of the owner.  As domesticated as they are, as much as I treat mine like children, they are still animals with animal instincts.  And one of Bogie's biggest instincts is to chase moving animals.

So my feelings no longer hurt, but my hands do.  A lot.  I had them x-rayed and there are no broken bones.  So why do they hurt?

Hmmm.  Well.  (look around and avoid meeting eyes)  Maybe because I am not following the instructions I was given.

I was told not to walk Bogie for at least a couple weeks, but I walked him Friday and yesterday.  And yesterday he tried to chase a bunny.  I'm sure pulling on the leash to stop him didn't help my hand any.

I was told to keep them elevated and yesterday I went shopping with my friend.  My hands were in their natural downward position for several hours.

I was told to rest them, but there are birds and dogs to feed and water. There was a broken sprinkler head to fix.  The floor needed to be mopped.  Pants needed to be hemmed.  I did a lot of typing in my journal and social media.  And I needed to eat.

I was told to ice them.  Which I did.  For maybe two days.

The person at Next Care told me it would probably take 4 to 6 weeks for my hands to fully recover.  Not sure what that is in "can't follow directions" weeks.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Maybe Bogie needs professional training

When I got Bogie last year, he was 15 months old, 120 pounds, and basically untrained.  I've made good progress civilizing him.

I thought.

This morning we were walking along like we do almost every morning.  We've encountered many dogs and many joggers over the months.  And with each encounter, Bogie gets better behaved.

Which is why I was unprepared this morning.

A couple of women were walking a medium sized terrier, crossing the street Bogie and I were approaching.  As usual, I held Bogie back, making him sit until the others passed.  Rather than come up behind them, I planned to cross the street with Bogie.

As soon as I released him from sit, Bogie lunged after the other dog to greet it.  I tried to pull him back, but I didn't have a secure stance.  I ran with him, pulling back on the leash.

Until we reached the curb.

I lost my footing and went down face forwards onto the concrete.  The two women were aghast.  A woman jogger came to help.  I laid where I was until I caught my breath.  For a moment, Bogie stood in the street, until the jogger pulled him back. The two women with the terrier left, so their dog wouldn't agitate Bogie.

The jogger walked part way home with me.  Having her to converse with helped distract me.  I kept Bogie on a very tight leash the whole mile back to the house.  I don't know if he even realizes that he hurt me.

The most painful damage seems to be to my hands.  The impact when I hit the concrete has already caused bruising.  My right hand held the leash and landed on the hard plastic casing.

The most obvious damage is the scrape on my right cheekbone and the slight bruising under my eye.  I look like I was in a bar fight.

And I feel . . .  betrayed.

That I could take this boy in and love him and care for him and have him casually hurt me made me wonder if maybe I was in over my head.  Maybe my Mom was right and he is too much dog for me.  I began to wonder if he even had any attachment to me.  Would he notice if someone else brought his food and filled his water bowl?

Then I got a grip and realized I love Bogie, bumps, bruises, and all.

A few months ago I had tried to contact a recommended professional dog trainer.  But they were always out of the office and I gave up.

I think I will try again.  

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

New job!

I got a call yesterday offering me the job that I really, really wanted.  I start on 6/17.

Not sure if I am supposed to blog the company name.  In any case, I will be working in the QA department of a travel company.  I'll be writing automation tests, working on the test database, and whatever else comes up. It's QA work, but with a development flavor

Some of the reasons I'm so psyched, in no particular order -

  • I start on 6/17, which gives me a little more time to get Angel healed before I leave her all day with Bogie. 
  • I have worked with 7 of the people already in the department, and that includes my new boss.  Less need to prove myself.  These people already know what I can do. 
  • There is a blend of telecommute and in-office days.  A nice mix of days spent with my dogs and in face-to-face contact with humans.  
  • On-site cafeteria and fitness center, flexible hours, casual dress code. 
  • The company charities include a pet charity.  
  • The company is Fragrance-Free, so I won't have to worry about my migraines being triggered by someone's cologne. 

As much as I have enjoyed the leisure of not working, I'm very excited to be going back to work.