Thursday, November 06, 2008

Odd Bits

Long hard day and an even worse commute. I said yesterday that the client was not that far away from my own offices(which I rarely go to) and that the commute was not that bad for Atlanta. Wrongy! It took me an hour this morning to go the 15 miles and an hour and 10 minutes this afternoon. Sheesh! Glad I don't have to do this everyday. The client is implementing our new work force management product which is really slick. It takes in calls for service from the client's customers and matches them up with available technicians and then schedules the techs to achieve an efficient 'route' for each tech's workday. It is interfaced with Google maps and all that high tech stuff and allows the customer service folks to monitor each call and do everyting necessary to meet customer expectations. It is also very complex and there is so much data involved it makes it very difficult to troubleshoot problems. I am crosseyed from trying to untangle all the variables involved in a simple service call. Tech skills, traffic, conflicting emergency calls, no parts, wrong parts, wrong zip code. It is also a little funny since we aren't talking life and death here but dispatching techs to repair soda fountains and machines but in the restaurant business if your high margin soda fountain is not working it is a bad thing. It's a living.

Trying to catch up on all the blogs this evening and one you shouldn't miss in MandT's newest post on the election at Adgitadiaries. As always it is brilliant.

Finally found a solution for the Austrian Kale in last week's CSA offering. I made a simple soup with chicken stock, onions, a bit of tomato paste and garlic, a can of canellini beans and the kale. Pretty good. If any one is interested I will post a more detailed recipe.

MandT's post, mentioned above, got me to reminiscing a bit about my experiences growing up white in the South of the fifties and sixties. We lived in a fairly small town in North Carolina, Roanoke Rapids. My dad worked at the paper mill and mom at the local dairy as a bookeeper. On the side they owned a little lunch spot next to the Trailways bus station. I can still remember the little window on the sidewalk for serving blacks. Whites could sit at the counter or in one of the few booths but blacks had to order at the window that opened on the sidewalk. It seemed so natural at the time but today I find it hard to believe. How things have changed.

I had a lot of idle time today whist commuting and that is always dangerous since I tend to think. These last eight years have had a hugely negative impact on my presence. I could use the word karma but it wouldn't quite be correct. Over the last years my ability to hate has grown as has my tendency to dismiss others who don't agree with me as stupid or of no account. These and some other 'sins' are a real and unwelcome reversal for me. I have spent years, since the late sixties, studying, practicing and meditating in an attempt to put these devils in their proper place and I was doing fairly well up until 2000. I, unfortunately, let what Paul Krugman calls the "monsters" leech away years of progress. The good news is that I have started to garden again and I already feel energized and more in touch with the universe than I have in many years. I let the fallout from the "monsters" contaminate me and my connection with the world and I should have responded more quickly. I need to do better and I will. I really should have been more in touch with myself and realized why, after so many years, I found it imperative to spend all the time and hard work to start the big garden again. The Tao knew what was needed.

Another day tomorrow trying to figure out why the tech with no 'o' rings on his truck was dispatched to a Burger King with a leaky syrup hose but it is Friday and that is a 'good thing'. Oh and one more thing...our 'test region' is Orlando, Tampa and Fort Meyers and have you ever contemplated how many soda fountains and soda machines there are in such a small area? It is really frightening to consider.

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