Post Conditional (postconditional) wrote,
Post Conditional
postconditional

Going fishing

Had a frozen fish dinner with my mother tonight. It's a real treat for her, since my father is allergic to fish. Mom preheated the oven to 475, baked for 10 minutes, turned the fish over, and baked for another 24 minutes. We cooked half the package this way, and we got shrunken burnt dried up hockey pucks.

I re-read the instructions. Preheat oven to 475. Bake for 10. Flip. Bake for 2 - 4 minutes. Ahhh... that would explain some things.

I'm going to be a stow-away for a while.

My father had been unemployed for 25 months. I guess he was too experienced, too specialized, and too stubborn to look for jobs outside of his field until those last handful of months of approaching utter desperation. (The computer industry is so broad that it is possible to have a lot of experience but only in a specific direction.) He started off writing system BIOS for IBM many years ago. When he hired on at Dell, he introduced a step by step procedure to prevent changes to the production line based on mere whims. (If you're going to ship a new software package, then you're going to need to test that software for quality control before shipping kinds of things...) At Dell, he was the (program?) manager that made sure that Windows 2000 would work on all of Dell's supported desktop models before Microsoft released Windows 2000. (Something Dell had never done before.)

About 2 months ago, Intel Corp hired my dad with a full moving and living package.

I wrote about visiting Washington state here before. I see more IT jobs per capita there, along what's left of my ever-decreasing immediate family who now all live there. I don't really have any family to tie me to Austin or even soon to be family.

I'm stowing away on the moving and living plan.

I wanted to spend some time with people without the pending move over-shadowing those visit. I wanted to say goodbye to people in person. There are still people that I have known for some time and value that I have not been able to meet up with and say goodbye in person. It's kind of tearing me up. It's important to me to say these things in person, and I'm running out of time.

There are many things I simply will not miss about the South. I won't miss the seasonal allergies. I won't miss the heat. I won't miss the Bible thumpers. I won't miss the cowboy culture. I will not miss the political climate that turns a blind eye to the wrong doings of politicians for the sake of religious moral righteousness turned into a crusade excuse to go pre-emptively into Iraq... or maybe that is the justification?

Austin may be weird. It may be liberal. It may have been in one of the few Texas counties to have voted Kerry. If Texas is a whole 'nother country, then Austin is a whole 'nother country inside of that, but the truth is that the rest of Texas culture is encroaching on Austin just as Austin expands and encroaches upon once unconnected towns. There's a t-shirt that has been spotted up here in Georgetown, thirty minutes North of Austin. It reads, quot;Keep Georgetown normal."

We all feel the encroachment happening. Austin is getting bigger, and is one of the fastest growing cities in the nation. It is becoming more commercialized. It's drawing in a population that doesn't understand the weirdness and the need to just let it do its own thing. It's attracting yahoos that think that paying large sums of money to attend South by Southwest is the same as experiencing 6th street.

Then again, I could argue that the spirit of Austin is enrolled at UT with no plans to graduate, ever. It once envisioned itself as the Silicon Hills, but it's currently holding down a job in tech support as a way to fund its expeditions to Austin's local institutions and lifestyle.

In short, Austin is going through an identity criss while the rest of the state seems to be getting more oppressive. It's as if Austin would get out from under Texas if it could and leave the capital building behind.

Anyways, I'm going to the State of Washington. I hear that they have excellent fish up there.

I will be heading out in two weeks. I wanted to give everyone a three to four week's warning, but schedules keep getting adjusted, and now it looks like it is going to be two.

Of all of the things I will be leaving behind, I will miss the people I've met here the most.

Feel free to comment, flame, or just leave a message.
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