Three Beer Day

We’ve all heard of a three dog night correct?  If you haven’t heard that before, or at the very least heard the band then you’re too young for this blog so go away.  I’m just kidding, seriously haven’t I told you not to believe anything you read here?  But definitely go check out the band Three Dog Night, they were rocking it when I was in high school back in the dark ages.

I’ve heard the meaning behind “three dog night” many times and from multiple sources.  Go here if you want to see how the Urban Dictionary defines it.  What it comes down to is that when it’s very, very cold you want three dogs in bed with you.

But that isn’t the point of this post.  I’ll bet my regulars figured that out on their own.

Beginning with three dog night lets me segue to my day yesterday and its rating as a “three beer day”.  Some of you may not think that’s too bad a day and for you that could be true.  However, I come from an alcoholic mother and a Scots father and my genes are against me.  Plus?  I’m a total lightweight with alcohol.  So three beers usually puts me to sleep, and not necessarily in a good way.

Since my promotion I haven’t seen any gray hair but I’m not looking all that hard.  Also, as a former hair dresser told me once, my natural ash blonde color hides the gray quite well.  Thank goodness!  So, back to yesterday.

Well, let’s start with the day before.  You may recall that I wrote this post about a secretary leaving to work somewhere else.  Her departure was the second one in as many weeks.  And the day before yesterday a third secretary gave her notice.  I have no words.  Oh wait, I have plenty of words.  They’re just words I can’t use out loud in the workplace!


So now we’re up to yesterday.  Not only am I supporting four of my own attorneys, but due to the recent departure I was temporarily covering two others for a secretary who now had six people on her desk!  She was in the midst of trial prep and something she called an allocation which required a lot of focus so I offered to help two of her folks or find someone to help them if I couldn’t.  Hey, that’s what a lead does, right?  Leads?  Well yesterday the work Would. Not. Stop. Coming.  And then a visiting attorney who was using the appropriately named Visiting Attorney Office on my floor needed help.  His was pretty easy and quickly finished.  But following that I needed to set up a pleading format for a filing in Florida.  We’re in Seattle folks.  You do the math.  So to speak.

By quitting time I was so done.  It was a two beer night for sure and luckily I had five left of a six pack in my fridge at home.

JD met me at our bank to get the cashier’s checks for some monthly obligations and ask why they were holding onto our tax refund check which he’d deposited the night before.  (It’s the federal government for heaven’s sake, if you can’t trust them…oh wait, never mind).  He mentioned in passing something about getting bad news and of course I had to ask.  Duh.

As you may recall, we’re due to go camping beginning tomorrow.  Murphy had other plans.  When JD went out to put a new electrical adaptor in the fifth wheel he discovered someone had broken into the trailer and probably close to $500 worth of property was stolen.

Hence, a three beer night.   Alas I only had time for one after dealing with filing the police report and calling the insurance company.



I want a Donnie Hendrix

Of course if you don’t watch Orphan Black you won’t know about Donnie Hendrix will you?


Donnie is the husband of one of the clones played by Tatiana Maslany.  Before we get to Donnie let me bow down and give all sorts of kudos to Ms. Maslany.  This young actress has portrayed (at my last count anyway) eight different personalities – some at the same time!  Okay, not literally at the same time.  But through the magic of film making she acts in scenes with herself and you actually believe there are two (and sometimes three) of her.  Most of us probably understand how that’s done – using body doubles they shoot a scene over one character’s shoulder then re-shoot the same scene from the opposite point of view and blend the two in editing.  However, they actually have her interacting with herself in ways that feel more genuine.  In Orphan Black: The Cloneversation they talk about how it works and chat with some of the stars.  If you’re at all interested in what this BBC series is all about check out the Cloneversation and prepare to be hooked.

So back to my original point – I want a Donnie Hendrix.

THIS is a Donnie Hendrix

This is a Donnie Hendrix

Played by Kristian Bruun, Donnie is an affable, well-meaning man with a big heart.  He ADORES his wife and would do anything for her, as he proves in season 2.  But my favorite quality of Donnie’s is his warmth and easy-going nature.  I don’t always appreciate how the writers portray him – in some episodes he comes across as a charming doofus for instance – but his love for his wife and children remains steadfast.  His pleasant demeanor has faltered on occasion, but only briefly and with good reason.  This is the kind of man you want by your side when the shit hits the fan.

To be clear, I don’t want to trade JD for Donnie, but I can’t help wishing sometimes that JD had more of Donnie’s qualities.  JD can be a bit paranoid…hell, who am I kidding?  He’s completely paranoid.  Further, little things irk him and once he’s irked then it escalates quickly to frustration and finally anger, and while it isn’t directed at me it can still make me cringe.  What can I say?  I’m a product of my raising and I’ve taken avoiding confrontation to a new level.

What brought this on is our upcoming camping trip.  Wait – I should back up a bit.  The camping trip is only happening because I requested leave for this coming Friday, Monday and Tuesday way back last year to go to Comicon.  I came into the full glory of my geekhood (geekdom?) late in life and my favorite daughter and I share many of the same geeky pleasures.  Last year we went to all three days of Comicon and stayed downtown in a hotel together.  It was a great girls’ weekend and between discovering some comics I loved and the people-watching we had an awesome time.  So of course I immediately submitted a request for time off so we could go again this year.

So why am I camping this weekend instead of joining the geek tribe?  JD is why.  I won’t go into the gory details but he wasn’t exactly thrilled about last year’s weekend and I got to hear it afterward.  Rather than face the debate that would ensue if I brought up wanting to go again this year I just opted out.  But I didn’t give back the vacation days either.  When we re-upped with our camping membership and discovered a beautiful campground conveniently near JD’s newly found biological father, it seemed like a good idea to use the vacation time I already had scheduled.

Fast forward to the present:  I know from past experience how the whole packing up the trailer and getting everything ready is going to go.  By the time we actually reach the damn campground I’ll be so done.  I love camping, but sometimes it’s more work than relaxation.  Followed by MORE work when we get home.  And then?  I get to go back to WORK.  <Sarcasm>Yippee</Sarcasm>.

On a happier note, season 3 of Orphan Black begins on April 18!  Woo hoo!

My career flashed before my eyes

and that was the good news yesterday!

This new gig as a lead secretary has a bigger learning curve than I originally anticipated.  I was already doing almost everything the lead does without the title.  Then slap a title on me and watch me screw the pooch.

We had a meeting yesterday among the secretaries in my group.  Mainly it’s a place we check in with each other, evaluate our workloads, talk about upcoming vacation and coverage needs.  This time we touched on the new clerical model the Poobahs are trying out in our office.  The new model trial consists of one secretary covering all our first year associates.  First years are those newly graduated law students who are trying to find their place in the legal world.  Do they really want to claw their way to the top in a major law firm?  Perhaps they’d be better off working in the public sector?  Or possibly they might decide to go into a solo practice.

Because they’re fresh from law school they are usually very self-sufficient but they still need help navigating the rapids that exist in a major law firm.  In the past we’ve discussed how best to teach them what they can delegate to an assistant in order to free up their time for billable work.  Such is the life of a mega-global associate.  If you don’t bring in or bill the bucks you may not be around long.  The new model though has the secretary showing these newbies how to handle their own administrative tasks rather than delegate them.  That means they’re being taught how to copy, scan and submit their own expense reimbursements among other clerical duties usually performed by a secretary or assistant.

As you might imagine, this doesn’t sit well with experienced secretaries, some of whom view it as the beginning of the end.  If new attorneys have no need of an assistant that means the firm can cut down on the number of secretaries needed, which in turn can lead to lay offs.  However, as I mentioned, this is still a trial balloon.  Nothing has been decided one way or another.  In any case, try floating this kind of thing to veteran attorneys who are accustomed to relying on their assistant for clerical as well as more complex support services including in some cases research, drafting of pleadings, etc.  Not. Going. To. Happen.

Enter one secretary in my department who, while speaking with one of her attorneys after our meeting, proceeded to explain that the new model was a done deal and soon he would have to do his own copying, scanning, etc.  Or at least that’s what he took away from the conversation.  And at his first free moment he called HR.  Who then called me wanting to know just what we talked about in our meeting.  Yay.

And, as I said in the beginning this was the good news.  Last night around 8:30 I learned my best friend here in Washington had been hospitalized Saturday and was in ICU.  She lives alone and I understand the hospital would call her daughter (back in the Midwest somewhere) and not us.  We’re not blood after all; only sisters from different mothers.  So it fell to her daughter M to text us last night to fill us in.  Which begs the question, why didn’t I hear from her sooner?  You’d think since she is so far away that she’d want someone local to be in the know so her mom wouldn’t be alone in the hospital.  You would think.  Wouldn’t you?


Shut your Pi Hole

What I know about π would fit in a thimble, a really, really small thimble.  So why am I celebrating Pi Day you ask?  Sure you did, you’re reading this aren’t you?  That shows a degree of interest.  It might be merely a smidgeon.   Or what about a tad?  How much is a tad?  Or a dab?  A little dab’ll do ya they say.  And who are THEY anyway?

Sorry, I got way off track there.  But if you’re a regular reader that didn’t come as a surprise did it?

So what was I saying?  Oh right.  I know almost nothing about π but I’m still making a big deal of Pi Day.  Mostly because I wanted to be sure to post something after having that countdown graphic posted for months and months.  You know, the one over there ⇒in  the sidebar.

I sort of remember them talking about pi in high school algebra (or was it geometry?) but math was never my thing.  I was always more interested in words, writing or reading.  Even during summer vacations I mostly had my nose in a book.  Since high school I have never found a use for pi in my day to day life but as my tastes in reading and film evolved and I was exposed to science fiction I started hearing about pi more frequently.  That’s not to say I know about pi, just that I’m familiar with the term.  I have no idea why it’s important or what value it has (beyond 3.14159…) but I wanted this post to be more than me rambling about what I don’t know so … Wikipedia to the rescue!  I know, I know.  Wikipedia as an authority can be suspect.  But in this case I’ll take my chances.  This blog is entertainment after all, not for educational purposes.  You do know that right?  Don’t believe anything you read here.  Seriously – not. a. thing.

Pi, according to Wikipedia is “a mathematical constant, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter.”  It goes on and on about pi for 29 pages (when you print it out that’s how many you get) and I didn’t understand anything much after the first paragraph.  Go figure.  I happen to think pi is more female than male though.  They say it’s irrational and many women are all about irrational aren’t they?  Face it ladies, we can be irrational at times.  But look at what we have to deal with on a daily basis.  No, don’t; we’re getting off topic again dammit.

Archimedes was the first to record an algorithm for “rigorously calculating” the value of π.  I haven’t a clue why someone would want to rigorously calculate anything, let alone pi.  In any case, his method was known as the polygonal algorithm and remained dominant for over 1,000 years.  If I understand correctly, mathematicians competed with each other to determine who could calculate pi to the highest number of digits.  And they say women are irrational.  Over time various ways to calculate pi were developed and in the mid-20th century the appearance of computers “again revolutionized the hunt for digits of π.”  Wikipedia says that 1 million digits of pi were reached in 1973.  All I can say is why?  No seriously, why?

Well apparently it does have practical applications like “testing supercomputers, testing numerical analysis algorithms” etc.  Meh.

Pi has also become a sort of icon in popular culture.  The practice of piphilology is the memorization of as many digits of pi as possible.  As of this writing, according to Guinness World Records in 2005, the record for memorizing digits of pi goes to Lu Chao of China.  Over 24 hours and 4 minutes he recited correctly 67,890 digits.

March 14th is celebrated in a variety of ways all over the world.  Go visit some of these sites to check it out if you’re inclined to join the festivities tomorrow.

Math Goodies – countdown with DIY activities and educational information

How America Celebrates Pi Day – CNN’s report on Pi Day 2014

Education World – for teachers mainly; plan a Pi Day party, ideas for activities by grade level

How to Celebrate Pi Day – Forbes Magazine article on Pi Day, including a brief history about how Pi Day got started

A search of YouTube for Pi Day celebrations resulted in everything from what appeared to be a 40-ish minute lecture to three guys taking pies in the face in slow motion.  Here are two of my favorites from the YouTube search results.

Finally, Time posted this article a couple of years ago about some of the nuttiest celebrations out there, including a video you have to see to believe.

On this, the eve of Pi Day say YES to pi, and to PIE!









My faith

in humanity is somewhat restored.

Ha!  I bet I had you going there for a moment didn’t I?  You thought I was going to preach at you or something.  Well, not if you’ve followed me for very long, but newbies might have wondered.

You may remember this post where I called out a jerk-off line-cutter from my commute.  So Janey, tell us how you REALLY feel!

Well since then I’ve kept an eye on this kid (hey to someone nearing 60 anything younger than 30 is a kid!).  And guess what?  So far as I can tell he’s not cutting the line any more!

I guess Gabriel Iglesias is right.  Embarrassing kids is the single best weapon we have to discipline kids — that’s legal.  (The link takes to you to the whole Hawaii show but the segment I’m referring to is right around the 34:45 mark.)  When you have time, check out the whole show, or one of the others on YouTube.  Iglesias is brilliantly funny in my opinion and I’m looking forward to seeing more of him.

And now, back to the grind.  Have a great day peeps!

Janey out.

I’m baaaack, but not for long.  A clerk in our office sent around a link to a story about faith in humanity (timing is everything isn’t it?) and it was too good a story not to share it with all of you.  It’s a much better story than mine so go read it!  Go on!

Lonely at the Top

A while back I posted that I’d gotten a promotion.  I soooo wish that sarcasm had its own font right now.  Because “BIG WHOOP” without any special emphasis just doesn’t do it for me.

It’s been days since I’ve been able to read anyone’s blog people!  DAYS as in multiple periods of 24 hours each!  Long damn days filled with extra responsibilities and headaches.  You know, when they offered me this position many years ago and I turned it down, I WAS RIGHT!

But on the plus side (I should be glad there’s a plus side right?) the day goes by much faster.  I have to focus on the positives or I may resort to violence.

So if you don’t see me commenting it isn’t because I don’t care.  It’s because I can’t find a freaking minute to check in and catch up with y’all.

Now if you’ll excuse me I have one secretary on vacation, another leaving early today and one who is being overwhelmed by 5 attorneys.  Please, please, please Lord – don’t let her quit!

Oh and the Poobahs, with their unlimited intelligence, are not going to fill the vacancy in our department.  Yippee.