Brain Blurbs

  • Physically there has been some improvement. Surgery took care of a lot of my pain through the back of my neck and back of shoulders – as well as the shooting arm pains. I've still had some residual pain on the tops of my shoulders and stiffness tied in with pre-operation lack of mobility. This is what I've been going to physical therapy for. I am happy to report there have been small victories in the amount of movement I have and although I still am going to PT and doing my exercises faithfully each day and I can't tell there has been improvement, the numbers don't lie. That makes it worth it, knowing someday I may able to actually scratch my own back again. At the moment, I'm just happy to be able to drive myself to town!
  • Sizzle knows me too well. I realize that going back to work and being happy about it is rather strange to most people, but I actually do like my job and the people I work with and I don't get very stressed this time of year – only in the fall when everything in my life gets crazy from harvest and work and the perfect storm that is fall. Working a few hours a day, or even half a day, or even three days a week, is just ducky with me. It forces me to use my free time a bit more wisely and I tend to get more done and appreciate the 'off' time more. But, as I said, Sizzle knows me… expectations of Jammie Days are always just around the corner!
  • The whole job-hunting-internet thing? Well… to be honest, when I posted that I had already spilled the beans. You have to understand the dynamics of our office, however. There are only four of us (that includes me) that work in the office and although I call one of them "boss", he's really not. He's just the manager of our location. I answer to the company owner who is in another location. I jokingly mentioned the surfing to the manager here – who, for the record – had heard from other people that a certain someone in our office had already been interviewing elsewhere. So… it really wasn't a huge "reveal". Also, for the record, I would never ever have told the big boss. I just don't rat out people like that.
  • On the same subject, I am not able to partition off my computer as it isn't just certain files that must be used but whole programs that only are found on my computer and although we have several computers in the office they aren't networked.
  • Blizzard (the World of Warcraft parent company) have contacted me and asked me to tell them exactly what I lost so they could replace it. Oh, dear. I just asked for money (game money). I can't remember in detail every little thing I had for each character – I had several. I've been able to play with some wonderful contributions from my daughter but it will be nice if I can get reimbursed at least for funds that I lost.
  • I picked the brain of the wonderful Miss Jen and she was so sweet and generous. She knits (man, does she ever knit!) and I asked her for a basic sock pattern… you know, so I could get out of the scarf, afghan, shawl, and baby cap rut. Well she came through almost instantanously! Super Jen! Ta da! Patterns appeared in my inbox and tips came forth in her email. I was so thrilled. Thank you again, Jen! Now, if I can just figure out this four-needle thing. (I have a sinking sensation this task takes coordination… Have I mentioned I'm uncoordinated? Um… yeah…)
  • It is looking like a quiet weekend. Hubs, youngest son, his new wife, and a friend are heading out to Nebraska for a race. I mean, for son to race. I think son and friend were leaving today, Hubs in the morning, and the DIL's dad is going on out to Colorado, so she's riding to Nebraska with him after she gets off work tomorrow. Me? I'm on critter watch. My own, plus son and DIL have a husky, a schnoodle (mutt) and three cats. The cats are self-sufficient but the Husky is their baby and the schnoodle is an out of control pound puppy who never got over most of his bad habits… so they both need a bit of extra attention. At least the weather is supposed to be nice around here until Monday! (Rumors of snow again on Monday… of course!)
  • I may actually get my Christmas decorations down this weekend. Shaddup.

It Looks Like Improvement

My physical therapist cleared me today to go back to work. Only 2-3 hours a day at first, increasing as I can "tolerate" it… but still, it's a beginning! When I called my boss this afternoon to let him know he actually sounded HAPPY! I realize to most of you this would be a bad thing, but for me? It is a sign that improvement is really occurring. I'll take that. Oh, and it doesn't hurt that I can start making a little money again, too. It's been a long winter… in more ways than one.

Full Circle

A couple of years ago I posted about a co-worker's tragedy when his younger brother was killed in an accident. He had been on his way to work and his pickup hit an icy spot on a bridge and he and his passenger were thrown from the vehicle and killed. It was especially sad because he hadn't been married long and had a fairly small child. As a consequense, my co-worker ended up moving back to his home state to be closer to his brother's family.

Life has a funny way of moving on… and healing does occur. My former co-worker and his lovely wife just had their first child. A boy…and, yes, they named him Daniel after the brother who was lost. All good wishes go for this growing family. A treasured child is a wonderful thing.

Level Orange-ish (Not a Family-Friendly Post)

I'm guessing the rating for today's post is not going to be PG-13. Today finds me at bit peevish. Oh, nevermind. I'm not going to beat around the bush… I'm pissed. Big-time. Once again my faith in human nature has taken a hit and I'm frustrated, saddened, and really really pissed off. 

I've been robbed. No, not my home, business, or person… but in the cyber world. Still? I can relate a bit to the feelings a person has when they have had things stolen in their real life as the shock was very vivid and I have to keep reminding myself "this is only a game".

I have spoken before about how I play "World of Warcraft" with some of my kids. I actually have two accounts as I took over my daughter-in-law's account when she decided not to play any longer. You are only allowed a certain number of characters in what they called a "realm" and with two accounts I was able to exceed that character number. I love making new characters and since I play so slowly I it takes me a long time to get to a very high level. (I apologize to those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about.) Right now the game has a high level of 70. After playing for almost 3 years my highest character is only level 41 – and that is on my main account.

In November after loading a weekly update patch (they do this practically every week), I found I was unable to log into my main account. Because I was busy, in pain with my neck and back, and swamped with work and holiday stuff coming up I didn't think much about it and thought I had just made a typo in entering my sign-on information. I had changed my email address a couple of times and wasn't sure which email address I had on file so was not able to use their automated password recovery to try and figure out what I was doing wrong. I didn't try to log on again until January and was still unable to. Thinking (wrongly) that if anyone wanted to steal my account and my characters, as what happened to my son-in-law several months ago, they would go for my main level 41 character – the others being level 30 or below. The couple of times I logged in with my other account I could see that my main character was right where I left her, so hadn't gone into panic mode. In retrospect, I was an idiot… and have been kicking myself. A lot.

A few weeks ago I tried to get in again – this time more seriously. No luck. I sent an e-mail to Blizzard, the parent company, and got the reply that I would have to contact the Accounts department by phone. I did so a couple of days ago and explained my whole situation to a very pleasant support person who informed me that just a couple of weeks ago Blizzard had frozen my account and had sent emails to my old email account. He looked them up and said I would need to contact the account administration people and tell them exactly what I had told him. I did and they responded yesterday by giving me access to my account again and saying they could see there apparently had been unauthorized activity on the account.

No shit.

I logged in and my stomach went into dying fish mode… you know, flipping and flopping. I was sick. Instead of logging into my main realm and seeing 8 characters, there was only one… my main… and she had been stripped, literally. She had no money, no bags, no 'stuff', not even clothing. They had taken everything except her horse (which can't be sold). I personally think the only reason she wasn't gone was because she was the guild manager of our small family guild and couldn't be deleted without handing over guild management to someone else.

Every single one of my characters (yes, even the one I created that looked like my husband and I loved to play to tease my daughters) was totally gone as though they'd never been there. All my three years of work to get to where they were… all the money I'd acrued… all the weapons and spells and bags and armor… all I had to show for three years worth of play was gone.

In their place, on 32 different realms were 32 different characters. All had the same name "Sbld" (whatever the hell THAT means)… all were level 1 and throughout most of them was scattered my money. Trust me, a level one doesn't end up with 500-some gold unless something or someone is behind them.

I'm going to have to rebuild my characters. I'm going to have to try and go from nothing to something and take another who-knows-how-long to get there. I can look at the bright side and say "at least I still have my level 41 character" which is true… but right now she's naked without a cent to her name. I've written to Blizzard again, hoping there is some way of recovering my funds from these shady characters that I'm sure are just being used as "banks". I'm not holding out much hope since they are on different realms. (If they were on the same realm as my character, it would be an easy mail transfer – but across realms I just don't know what can be done.) I am crushed by the fact that someone, somehow, got into my account and did this to me. I'm not a level 70… or even 60…  I play slowly and carefully and as far as I know, try not to piss anyone off. I try to be a friendly, helpful player. I have made sure to have anti-virus, anti-spyware, and not to ever give out my password to anyone. Ever.

I know this is "just a game"… but it still has impacted me at the cruelty and cold calculating nastiness that some people will go to – even in a virtual world!  I just want to walk away, but don't want to give them the satisfaction. If Blizzard won't give me my money I'm not sure what I'll do next. It certainly will make it a hardship to start over with nothing.

Is it so much to ask that a game… a place where you go to relax and enjoy your friends and family and chat and run around …that it could just be that? Fun? Do the bad people have to ruin everything? Fuckers.

Marriage Lesson #27 aka Not My Department

Al  had a post where he was talking about buying another vehicle and having the discussion with his spouse about the purchase. It reminded me of my husband and my relationship where purchases are concerned.

Perhaps the biggest purchase we've ever made was land that he had been farming and when the landlord died we were given the option to buy. The stars aligned and it worked out. Consequently, we decided to build a house on a portion of that land. Although my husband went into shock when the banker said, "go ahead… do it now" (almost five years ago), he was a good sport about it all and turned the whole thing over to me. He knew I'd been designing and dreaming of a house for years and had some ideas that I felt pretty strongly about. His line was, "I just want to know how much it costs."

To those men who think I just castrated my husband, I did not. He was consulted on several points that directly effected him (the garage, the deck) and he was more than happy to give me his input – which I took into consideration and accepted into the overall design. I know him very well, too, so I didn't do this without him in mind. His habits and likes and dislikes were very much incorporated.

When it comes to the farm business, he keeps me in the loop… but I leave the decisions to him. He decides on equipment purchases, all input purchases (seed, fertilizer), and does all the marketing (for you townies, that is the selling of the grain). I don't ever "second guess" him on these decisions and, although he keeps me informed of them and appreciates my opinion, I make it perfectly clear to him that this is "not my department" and as far as I'm concerned is "not my decision".

He accepts the same attitude when it comes to technology and things around the house. He leaves it to me to select computers, printers, scanners, fax machines, most phones (he does pick his own cell phone), the decision to get the DVRs, etc. He tells me if he hates something I've bought for the house (which he's never told me) or if I've purchased something grocery-wise he likes or doesn't like. I can usually tell by how fast some snack gets inhaled whether or not I should be buying more of them or try something else. His attitude is, "not my department". 

We respect each other's decision. Yes, he'll drive me crazy with his decision making process. I've referred to it as "the waffle". He generally will think of something he wants to purchase or something he wants to do… then, over the course of days, weeks, or sometimes months, he talks himself our of the idea and into the idea multiple times. I say that is the ups and downs of the waffle… then, finally, he'll "fall off the edge" and make a final decision. (More often than not it is the one he started with, but it appears to be a process he needs to go through to feel right about it.) Ironically enough, after he makes the purchase he'll search the classified ads to make sure he didn't get 'screwed'! (Is that a 'guy' thing?)

I realize this method wouldn't work for everyone. It just happens to work for us… at least it has for about 30 years… 

Nothin’ Worth Mentioning

I think I have the flu. Or some relative of the flu. Spent last night (all night) sippin' 7-up and trying to convince myself I was not going to throw up. You know how you sometimes just get that feeling that you know if you could throw up you'd feel better? But then, really, who wants to throw up.

Yeah. Aren't you glad you came by today? Let's hope tomorrow is better, 'kay? 

Tagged by the Great Whall

Back in January I was tagged for this and didn't get around to doing it until now. Sorry, Wayne. What can I say? The dog ate my e-mail? Go check out his post to figure out where my answers came from. This wasn't as hard as I was afraid it was going to be…

Divination Meme

  1. How do I present myself to the world? I Write Sins Not Tragedies (Panic at the Disco)
  2. What do I value the most? Silent Sea (K.T. Tunstall)
  3. How do I communicate with others? Don't Stop Believing (Journey)
  4. Where do I come from? Take Me As I Am (October Project)
  5. How do I creatively express myself (or how do I have fun)?  Breathe (Anna Nalick)
  6. How does my work environment contribute to my overall well-being?  Miniature Disasters (K.T. Tunstall)
  7. What kind of person am I attracted to? Arms of a Woman (Amos Lee)
  8. How do I view death/transformation? Dream Life of Rand McNally  (Jason Mraz)
  9. What are my beliefs?  Travelin' Soldier  (Dixie Chicks)
  10. What do I want to be known for / what is my calling? Strangers in the Night (Frank Sinatra)
  11. What kinds of friends do I have? Philosophy (Ben Folds Five)
  12. What are my dreams *really* about? Hide and Seek (Imogen Heap)

Wow… I'd like to dispute a couple of these (i.e. #7 is definately NOT me). Interesting… very interesting.

Conundrum

So, here's today's question… "What would you do?"

I have a program that allows my computer to link to my work computer. It basically "takes over" my computer at work and allows me to do anything from home that I can do at work, using my work computer. My work computer is used by some of my co-workers when I'm not there. Mainly to surf the 'net. In the past I have had issues with porn sites (did I mention I work with all men?) When I log into my computer from home it immediately takes control of the computer and, depending on the settings, it generally blacks out the screen and takes all control away from the mouse and keyboard at work.

The other day I logged in from home and when the window opened up I could see whoever was on my computer at work was job hunting…

Do you suppose when they were sitting there and the screen went black and there was nothing they could do they freaked a bit? Talk about busted!

Now, here's the question. I'm 99% sure who the culprit was. Would you say something to the boss (keep in mind we are going to be getting into a busy season again when spring hits and being short-handed is not a good thing.) or, is that just a rat-bastard thing to do and you would let it slide?

I don't like other people on my computer when I'm not there and they know it. They also know I've had the porn issue and others and that is one reason I hate sharing. Unfortunately, I can't put a password on the computer because there are definate work-related files that others need to be able to access if I'm gone. Maybe I should just accept that this person probably shit a brick learned his lesson and it won't be an issue any longer…

Discuss.