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Category Archives: Frequently Happy

That’s “ineffectual communications”… if you use your spell-checker and maybe, just maybe, engage your brain.

Earlier this week I rejected a document at work. I rejected it because the grammar and syntax, the spelling, the punctuation and the general composition were so poor that I had to struggle to guess what the writer meant. So what am I, someone’s fourth-grade teacher? No, I’m just Always Grumpy.

That’s right, it’s me; I’m back after a long summer hiatus: Frequently Happy, Sometimes Sneezy, Often Dopey, Rarely Bashful and always, Always Grumpy.

As a cube-dweller in a sometimes sensitive position in a large corporate environment, I review documents all the time. I reject them when I feel I need to. When I do, it slows people down, delays their projects and makes them work harder. Read More »

If you’re chanting along with that, the volume and pitch should rise to a demented and enraged scream towards the end, accompanied by the sound of machine-gun clatter and mortar fire / shattering glass as some device flies through a window  / a rude thump as I pound on my desk and shatter the calm of my fellow cube-farm inhabitants. Read More »

Every now and then I run out of things to say. (Really, I do!) But when I want to keep up with the news or I need inspiration or sometimes just a break, I usually go to the interwebs. I’ve gotten pickier over the years, and the interwebs have changed. At many sites, the articles you see are barely even teasers. At those sites you don’t get any real content unless you pay for it either by sending dollars or by receiving ads. Those sites make me Always Grumpy, so I won’t tell you about them. But these sites on the interwebs make me Frequently Happy instead: I can usually go to them and learn something or crack a smile or both :-). I’ll start with I/T sites and move on to other stuff:   Read More »

 

As we’ve heard, lots of things make me Always Grumpy. And after a long week at work I’m Often Dopey and a drink or two on Friday evening makes me Quite Sleepy. Spending time with my family helps me be Frequently Happy though, and a few months ago I got to spend a solid week with my wife and our two giant teen-aged boyz.

Our taller and elder boy is much taller than Dad – that’s me, and maybe that’s why I’m All Seven Dwarves. Taller Boy is finishing high school this year and planning to head off to live in residence at university next fall. Our shorter and younger boy is now only a little shorter than Dad and catching up fast. Shorter Boy will still be in high school, but if he gets his way he’ll be in residence at a boarding school that’s more than a handful of time zones away from home. So we thought we should take the opportunity to get in at least one more full-family vacation this winter. Carpe Diem, as they say!

We talked to those boyz about what kind of vacation we wanted. The first decision: cold weather or warm? The vote went unanimously to somewhere warm. Next decision: land or cruise? Since three of the four of us have issues with motion sickness, a cruise seemed risky. Land it is. Now: beach or adventure? We were a little torn about this. All of us wanted some relaxation time, but we all lack the lassitude it takes to sit in a plastic lawn chair for a week, no matter how good the passing bipedal scenery. J So we needed some sort of activities. But where? There are so many choices. Read More »

Sometimes I have trouble keeping up with the world of IT. The constantly changing technology makes me Frequently Happy, Very Surprised and Always Grumpy… sometimes all at once, which is more than a little confusing!

Take this article from ZDNet UK, which is one of my favourite sources for fairly straight-up news and reasonably unbiased analysis of all things IT. Deprinting? What on earth is that? And why?

It turns out that deprinting is laser-based technology by means of which one can remove baked-on laser toner from printed pages. And it’s being touted as “environmental” or “green” technology because it could allow people to re-use sheets of paper up to two or three times. Really?!? Come on now.
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In spite of being Always Grumpy, I’m sometimes very lucky. In the cube farm where I work, I have the great good fortune to have wonderful neighbours, and it makes me Frequently Happy. My aisle-mates and I share humour both dark and light, swap happy stories about our family lives or commiserate as needed. And sometimes we just throw things at one another. Right in front of me sits another person who’s just about as geeky as me, poor thing. I’ll call my neighbour Simon, though that might be a fake name and even sex.

On the four-foot fabric panel wall that separates Simon’s back from my throwing arm rests a variety of toys. These are the kinds of things that accumulate in techie cube farms: stress balls, small wind-up toys, stuffed vendor mascots with screen-wipe behinds and so on. As Simon and I discuss the events of the day and week, we often play with these toys. Today we came up with a solution for Google’s inability to catch Apple in the race for mind- and market-share in the consumer electronics ecosystem market, especially when it comes to tablets and even now that it’s swallowed Motorola’s mobile devices unit. Happenstance, rather than necessity, was the mother of this invention.

So here it is! Read More »

Always Doc? Who’s that? We’ve heard that I’m Frequently Happy, Sometimes Sneezy, Often Dopey and Rarely Bashful. And we know I’m an I/T guy with lots of outside interests. But Doc? Really?

No. I’m not Doc. I’m Never Doc. I have only Bachelor’s degrees and I can only name a few of the cruder body parts and I’m not a medical practitioner of any sort, so you can count me out on that score.

Always Doc is my Dad, and this post is an homage to a man with a purpose. Dad turned 82 this month and he’s not feeling very well. So after over 56 years of practicing medicine as a General Practitioner on the same street corner in Toronto, my Dad is hanging up his lab coat and taking down his shingle. This is a sad moment for Dad and his patients and it’s a bittersweet moment for my step-Mom and all of our siblings, children, nieces and nephews &c. Dad could have more time to spend with us… but he’s not feeling well, so he won’t at least for now. There’s nothing to complain about here. Way back when we were little, Dad was often scarce for one reason or another, but that’s the way it was with Dads back then. Since we’ve reached adulthood, and gotten our own spouses and little ones, Dad has always made time for us in his home and life and swimming pool. Read More »

Hi there! It’s nice to meet you. I’m Always Grumpy – all sorts of things get me going. I’m not totally one-dimensional – I’m Frequently Happy, Sometimes Sneezy, Often Dopey… but I’m almost Always Grumpy. It’s usually about I/T, where I make my living and spend unconscionable amounts of my time even at home. But maybe it’s about traffic or politics or friendship or family. Why? Because I trust human nature. We can count on ourselves to behave consistently badly. For thousands of years, as long as we’ve recorded our myths and legends and histories, our stories are overwhelmingly all about what’s happened when we’ve lied and cheated and stolen and killed and just been plain thoughtless. We’re greedy yet kind, envious yet loving, self-absorbed yet generous, and all of the above all at once. Sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it’s tragic, sometimes it’s just plain perverse; the only thing we can be sure of is it’s always very human. Read More »

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