So, I received a Tweet from JobCircle today linking to an article detailing the Top 10 metro areas where you are most likely to get a raise.. I looked at the list and found myself wondering where these areas stood as far as cost of living. As this is something that is constantly on my mental radar, I decided to look them up.

Here is the list from the linked article:
  • Washington, D.C. – average raise of 2.3 percent, 77 percent of companies giving raises
  • Tampa – average raise of 2.2 percent, 79 percent of companies giving raises
  • Boston – average raise of 2.2 percent, 77 percent of companies giving raises
  • Philadelphia – average raise of 2.1 percent, 77 percent of companies giving raises
  • Denver – average raise of 2.1 percent, 76 percent of companies giving raises
  • Chicago – average raise of 2.1 percent, 76 percent of companies giving raises
  • Cincinnati – average raise of 2.1 percent, 75 percent of companies giving raises
  • Dallas – average raise of 2.1 percent, 75 percent of companies giving raises
  • New York – average raise of 2.1 percent, 75 percent of companies giving raises
  • Baltimore – average raise of 2.1 percent, 75 percent of companies giving raises
And here is the cost of living by area, as taken from Kiplinger's:
  • Washington DC: 138
  • Boston, MA: 129
  • New York, NY: 121
  • Baltimore, MD: 121
  • Chicago, IL: 113
  • Philadelphia, PA: 103
  • Denver, CO: 101
  • Tampa, FL: 99
  • Dallas, TX: 92
  • Cincinnati, OH: 90
Note: 100 is the national average; the higher the number, the more expensive it is to live there

I suppose you can draw your own conclusions, but to me, it shows that this area (The greater DC area) is still too damn expensive to live in.

The company I work for, Aster Engineering, is looking for two Network engineers to support their NOAA contract. One position is in Silver Springs, MD, the other in Suitland, MD. While the listings state that Cisco certification is required, that can be waived if you have enough experience.

The listings can be found here:

If interested, drop me a line in the comments with an email address. (See, if I submit you and you get hired and stay for awhile, I get a bonus.) Comments screened.
1: Please let me know where I can find a copy of your resume. I still get headhunters looking me up with job opps all over the country. If I see one that looks like it might fit, I'll try to get y'all together.

2: Staples is running a promotion where you can get 20 copies of your resume and 40 business cards for free. I know it's mostly done by email these days, but sometimes it's good to have some hard copies available.
Y'know, I haven't posted in for-frickin'-ever.

At least, not a real post.

So, to reassure folks, no, I'm not dead. Just been busy and stuff.

Here's a quick bullet list of doom:

  • Me: Doing well. Health is decent, life is decent, things are decent. Except my mind. That hasn't been decent in years.
  • Family: Also doing well. [ profile] mousecat0 will be employed as of June 1. The company she temped for last fall (Royco) has offered her a position as a property manager. Money is a little more than I make now. This job is why she's been taking the real estate class which has been melting her brain. Kids are doing pretty well as well. Still involved in Scouts, although we will be looking for a new troop for B. The one she's in now is absolutely willing to have her, but since the vast majority (read: all but one or two) of the girls are from her old school (DeChantal), they tend to be very school-centric, ie almost all activities and meetings are planned around their school schedule. Not that they don't try to be inclusive, because they do...but still, they sometimes don't make it. What's more, B. is being ostracized/excluded/ignored more and more. She really felt it when they were trying to put their skit together for the Green & Gold dinner, where she felt that they just ignored her suggestions altogether. To me, this is not a reflection on the troop - almost all of the girls see each other every day; the bonds between them are bound to grow stronger. I think if they were from a larger mix of schools, this would be less of an issue. F. participated in his first Pinewood Derby race this past weekend. I'll try to get pics up later today. Short version is that he placed first in his first heat, and 3rd in each of the other 3 heats. Not bad for the first time out.
  • Job: Hopefully good news later.
  • Sleepover: B.'s birthday sleepover went well. 3 of the 4 kids invited showed up. They played, ate pizza, watched Kim Possible and Sky High, and generally had fun until they passed out before midnight. Fed 'em waffles in the morning, then they went out to run off some steam down at the playground area with [ profile] mousecat0 keeping an eye on them. Generally speaking, F. was good and left the girls alone. While they went running around, we stayed home - where it was safe. Around noon, I got sammitches from Subway for everyone, and by 3 pm, everyone had gone home. Everyone enjoyed themselves.

That's about all I got at the moment. I'll TTYL.
OK, so it's ~9 am as I begin writing this.

I get done ~2:30 pm. I then have to change clothes.

At 3 pm is the job fair for "Team Capstone" - for those of us who are currently working at the ARchives and wish to continue. Interviews to be held there.

After that I go over to my sister-in-laws to pick up the kids. Then home to make dinner.

Tonight at 7 is the Incoming 6th Grade Parent Information Meeting at North Bethesda Middle School (Where B will be going next year). I am hoping that this will not be the crapfest I have come to expect from Montgomery County Public Schools "informational" meetings. The last few I went to have involved being given a handout consisting of printed PowerPoint slides and then someone reading those slides verbatim while projecting the slides. No additional information. That's not a presentation, that's a recitation. And dammit, if that's all you're going to do, just give me the damn thing to read at home and stop wasting my time.

Edit: Oh, this isn't a good sign. The Meeting is listed on two places on the school website. One gives the meeting time as 7-8 pm, the other says 7-8:30 pm. One email pointing out easily avoidable website issues, coming up! EndEdit

I may need some Warcraft time tonight just to decompress.

So, busy day ahead. Here's hoping that your day is a good one.

Oh, but of course it's a good day! You woke up on the correct side of the grass! By definition, that means it's a good day!

Peas. Out.
I feel like I should be entering something here.

Problem is, there just ain't much going on.

School starts on Tuesday.  Kids are ready to go back.  Not ready, however, to go back to homework.

[ profile] stoooooooo and [ profile] ginabeth are taking the kids for their annual weekend stay.  I expect them to spend 90% of their waking time in the pool.  I expect on Sunday to pick up 2 pink & tan raisins that sorta look like my kids.

In the meantime, I'll be picking up our order from Angel Food and putting the ceiling fan back up.  Plus trying to get things together for TCEP.

And maybe some WoW.

I've put in applications for a number of jobs, both locally and in the DE area.  I'm just tired of the half-assedness of stuff here.  Plus it'd be nice to be paid more. 

An interesting political thought:  Not too long ago, I observed that Senator Obama was rising in my opinion because of his lack of attack ads, and that based on the last several presidents who had a "lot of political leadership experience", that it was perhaps time for someone without so much experience.

My observations were countered with the rebuttal that based on that logic, if my car was broken, would I then take it to a vet?

My answer then, as now, was simple:  Right idea, wrong example.  If the mechanic who has been working on the car has not only not fixed it but made it worse then it would be wise to find another. Now, if you did this with a series of mechanics who graduated from the same school, it would then make sense to find someone from a different school, since it would appear that the first school is doing something wrong.

I don't know if Senator Obama can make a real difference.  But maybe it's time to try something new, because continuing to use what ain't working is nuts.

And yes, I joined the Pro-Obama D&D Crowd.
[ profile] mousecat0 has a job interview on Friday with a firm in Wash. DC.

(Yes, [ profile] thecallahan, with your firm)

All well wishes, karma, prayers, good thoughts, luck, etc. are greatly appreciated.
Interesting take on my earlier poll. Yeah, I thought about making it multiple choice, then decided not to. In any case, my response to her was that since she didn't want to get involved, that she should probably delete it and forget about it.

Pleased to see that most of y'all ain't pervy enough to save them for yourself for later...

Anyway, enough about that.

Time for something resembling an update. I think that it shall be in convenient bullet-point format.
  • Me: I am doing...ok. The usual late winter/early spring depression seems to be gone, or at least beaten into submission. If I can be said to be having any problems right now, it's a lack of sleep. Too many extraordinarily vivid (and strange) dreams, which aren't allowing me to stay asleep. Strange like being in a NJ diner with [ profile] tth, [ profile] aylinn and [ profile] gypsy_sylvin, sitting in a booth talking, then the ladies go off somewhere and [ profile] tth and I go back to their apartment, located behind the diner, and we go up the exterior stairs and clamber over a short section of roof to get to their landing. Yeah.
  • [ profile] mousecat0: She's still looking for a new job. It's not the best time to be job hunting. Otherwise in reasonably good health. Gets depressed sometimes over the job thing. I try to be supportive and smiley. Sometimes, it even helps.
  • Da kids: I'll have more of a report on this in a few hours. Report cards come home today. I anticipate good ones, especially since I know B. got an "A" on her big project this quarter. B is not as enthralled with violin as she was, still loves the chorus. I don't think we'll be continuing violin lessons next year, but we shall see.
  • Work: Work is work is work. Had a meeting with all engineers last week where they basically said "We think work is it's own reward! Expect to be rewarded twice as much in the coming months!" They keep calling it a "Dynamic Environment." What that translates to is that there are more changed minds and changed policies on a daily basis than Cher has wardrobe changes in a week of concerts. So, I spent last night updating online resumes at various sites.
  • Geek weekend: Spent the better part of Saturday at Games & Stuff in Glen Burnie for their Gary Gygax memorial day (which, I might add, they're doing again on April 26 from 12-8 pm; see this post for details.) It was a lot of fun; started off by playing in a run Against the Giants, then when enough people showed up (including [ profile] webqatch and family), I broke off to run White Plume Mountain. They recovered 2 of the weapons (Wave & Whelm), but time ran out before they could rescue BlackRazor. After Sunday brunch with my mother-in-law, we sat down and watched Star Wars: A New Hope & Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. What a great weekend.
  • WoW: Franush, my dwarf Paladin has hit 70. Now, am working on my mage, Gunsnbutter to level him. He's only at about 53 or so. Got into a real good PUG for a Zul'Farrak run last week, cleared all quests with only 1 death. I'll run with those guys anytime.
  • Cons: Origins is still a bit iffy. A lot depends on whether or not [ profile] mousecat0 gets a job by then. If she does...then she may not be able to go. And if she can't go, I have to seriously reevaluate whether or not I want to take B. Kinda playing it by ear for the moment.

And that's it for now.

Remember, if you woke up today, it's a good day. Somewhere, someone didn't wake up today.

Peas. Out.


Frank N. Huminski

February 2014

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