biddy biddy bop.

I'm having a nice weekend, although it turns out I'm single for half of it: my Mona went to work last night, thence to a slumber party in SF, and today she's back on this side of the Bay ("East Bay is Pig Latin for 'Beast'") to give some massages, and then tonight I think she's going back to her place in the city--she has a sublet there until Jeff finds a place closer to his job and she can move back to her apartment.

Probably my favorite music radio station here is KFOG, which plays a nice mix of old and new stuff, unlike "classic rock" stations whose new music is all by old artists: the latest hits by Aerosmith, the Rolling Stones, Billy Joel, along with their previous music, and goodies from musical masters like ZZ Top and George Thorogood.


This past week KFOG has been doing "Foghead Favorites", playing entire albums voted on by listeners. They've done a few Beatles albums and at least one Who album, and right now they're playing Paul Simon's Graceland, easily one of my favorite albums ever, in any genre. Ladysmith Black Mambazo is terrific; their usual weakness is that their songs are a bit repetitive, but with Paul Simon writing their music that's not really a problem, and they're placed into a beautiful tapestry of synthetic and natural sounds and tones that comes together into a liquid perfection of music. Everything is precisely where it should be, and sounds as natural as birdsong.

I went looking for a recipe for Chicken Tikka Masala, the primary focus of my addiction to Indian food (yes, I admit it; no, I don't care). I bought some canned sauce, but I don't think it'd be quite the same; and it's probably cheaper to make it myself, and I can make a quantity of it that I wouldn't want to spend money for, and I can freeze bits of it and have Chicken Tikka Masala ready to go ALL THE TIME! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAHA--

Right. I found this recipe as the first hit, which looks delicious (I tried RecipeSource, but their one Tikka Masala recipe looked specious), but the second hit was this speech by British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, which I think is wonderful.

Excitement on the job front: you may recall from our last episode that Inktomi wanted to interview me in a big hurry. So we did that on Friday at the end of the day, and of course they couldn't give me a decision then, because everyone went home (I'm not sure why they said they could). Apparently the normal Inktomi interview is an all-day affair of 6 hours and 8 people, so I got the quick treatment of 3 hours and 4 people. I think it went pretty well, and I think they may well want to hire me.

However, after talking to 4 people for 3 hours, I still don't know what the job entails, beyond that it's a vague combination of software development and systems operations. The thing is, I talked first to the manager, who was more concerned about my systems administration background and my willingness to wear a pager and be on call, and indicated that it was largely a systems administration position. After that I talked to the guy who's been doing the job for the past year or so, and he indicated that he's been doing 90% software development for the past few months, and is actually moving to a different part of the company where he'll be doing more sysadmin work. He asked me entirely programming questions about Perl and Java, and the guys coming after him asked me Perl, Python, and SQL questions, and some minimal sysadmin questions. Essentially I got two different impressions of the job from the manager and the guy who's been doing it; but the manager told me she was leaving it to the employee to tell me the specifics, very much as if she wasn't sure what exactly it involved.

I'm a bad sysadmin. Really. I don't like it, and it's a level of critical detail-work that I'm not good at. It doesn't work out well for anyone involved. And if this turns out to be primarily sysadmin work, I'll be doing the world a favor to turn it down. Admittedly Inktomi does seem to have a lot of opportunity to move around, up, down, and sideways, but I'm suspicious of the reality of that: many times at Goto and Neomeo there were "possibilities" that I could get involved in other projects, but mysteriously they never panned out. I'd follow up a couple weeks later to find that the idea had been dropped, or someone else had been hired. Maybe I could have put up with it if I hadn't been underpaid.

I'll hear from them tomorrow morning, but if they want to hire me, I'll need to have a talk with the manager and find out what her expectations for the job are, thereby avoiding pain and hassle for everyone. Fortunately there's a little bit of time, as the guy I'd be working for at the contract job got pulled into a sales trip until Wednesday night. I don't think I'd accept an offer from Inktomi until I talked to him, since I had verbally accepted the contract--there's no obligation there, but it's what feels right as a courtesy thing.

JD and I walked down to the Grand Lake last night to see Lord of the Rings again. It was fun, although to be honest I'm not quite sure how well it holds up to repeated viewing. I look forward to seeing Count of Monte Cristo, whenever we get to it.