CharlieMC (charliemc) wrote,

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Stress Nightmare? I Guess So...

Marilyn mistressmarilyn, sweet sister and friend that she is, let me sleep in this morning -- rather than go in to the office with her. Yeah, believe me, I know how blessed I am to have her in my life.

So I did some stuff here at home, then she came to get me and took me in to the festival office. One task this morning included talking to John from the company we'll probably use to provide our Auction computer equipment this year (a first). I'm excited NOT to have to drag our own computers, monitors, printers, etc. to the event site, as we've had some issues doing so in the past couple of years. (I already put my foot down about taking our expensive laser printers on site -- which are heavy to move and cost major $$$ to repair, much less replace!) His company provides all the equipment, plus setup and support, as part of one package. I'm excited to make this change, believe me.

Anyway, at work I tackled several things, which included working on this Excel issue Peter was having (that was unresolved when I went in for my 3:00 p.m. meeting with Oliver, Carol and Rich about our subscription calendar that Oliver's company is providing the festival free of charge. (As I've mentioned before, Oliver's company provides our eNewsletter service -- and has for years.)

The description of the cyber world of this calendar is HARD TO EXPLAIN in layman's terms -- especially if you're really close to the creation side. So Oliver is always glad to work together with me -- and I try to bridge the discussion so it makes more sense for the average end-user. That's one of my personal strengths, probably from creating so many simple (and hopefully more understandable) manuals for various people that explain applications and so on. It was fun to listen to things he'd changed about the engine based on my personal requests/suggestions. (smile) This has been in really serious beta for months, so I've been delighted to have hands-on up front.

Marilyn had to do a different meeting during that same time slot, so she didn't get to attend, more's the pity! But she did take the time to come and meet Oliver face-to-face (which was a FIRST for me, as well!!!), and express her gratitude -- and the festival's -- for all the amazing support we've had from Oliver and his company all these years. Happily, Oliver and I have a really good relationship, which has made things much easier for us.

After that meeting I went back to Peter's problem. He'd asked if either Kent (who comes in Thursday) or Ron (also possibly coming in this week) could aid with the Excel issue, but I told him I thought I was more likely to work it out than they were. Frankly, I don't begin to have the know-how of either of those men. On the other hand, I've been working as computer consultant for ages -- and my specialty is software applications. So even though I don't know Excel that well, I can generally reason out what's going on.

It was a messed up situation. The spreadsheet in question wasn't displaying the title blue bar when opened in Excel -- but worse, wasn't showing ANYTHING in the body, nor did it show the sheet tabs at the bottom of the page. There was good reason to suspect a virus, so I did run software to remove those (and did find some). Obviously document corruption is another possibility. As is application corruption (I did the 'Repair' function for MS Office, and was prepared to uninstall and reinstall, if need be). Finally, user error was possible (I've been wanting to give some classes to some of our Staff, but never quite find time), as well, though I don't really think this is what happened. The bottom line is that whether or not I knew HOW it happened, I needed to FIX it, if I could.

By sheer accident I'd discovered that I could open the document (poorly) in MS Word -- so I had seen that it WASN'T a blank document, no matter how much it looked like one! At some point I tried to open it on my own computer in Excel -- and there it was! But every time I tried on Peter's computer it was no go.

Long, long story shorter (if not quite short), I did finally fix the document and restore it so Peter could again open it and work on it. And that, friends, is my job -- to fix this stuff for the Staff. It was a small thing in the scheme of things, but felt like a big win today. (grin)

I also found some pink items for Mandy's going away party. I don't think I mentioned that we found out last week that Mandy has found a new job -- and that she'll be gone from our Staff after this week. I wish her the very BEST on her new job, of course. But she'll be missed. She adores the color pink (and so do I), so we're making her a pink basket (totally Carol's idea). We're also doing one of those big photo frame gifts we like to do. We all write on and sign the mat, which is cut for numerous photos to fit inside. Then we present it framed. Very cool, huh?

And I spent ages hunting for photos to go inside, as Carol wanted one of Mandy with Marilyn and me. I did find Mandy with me back in 2007, but I never did find her with Marilyn, which was annoying.

Tonight we came home after work (around 7:00 p.m.) and ate leftover pizza while watching "Jeopardy." Then we played briefly on our laptops and both went to take naps. I woke after quite the 'festival nightmare,' shaking and hot. I think all of us have these nightmares now and then, but generally it's just before or during the festival. It always stands out for Marilyn and me if we're having them any other time of year!

Mine was during one of our parades, with Marilyn and me flying around on the actual parade route in a car, trying to get somewhere important before the parade came (directly behind us). Needless to say, it was the parade Marilyn produces (and I help with) -- and it seemed very real in my dream (frighteningly so).

I have a lot of festival work I need to take care of this week (and in the near future). It's now late Tuesday, and I haven't even started the eNewsletter that needs to go out this week. I was supposed to do all the passwords again LAST week (other things got in the way), and that takes me around five hours plus. I still want to upgrade to MS Office 2007 on all the computers. And the computer maintenance schedule is huge, too (I hope Ron can help with that).

With the upcoming office-share and move, there's a lot of IT-related work to be done. I need to do an all-new inventory of what we have -- and figure out if any of it should go out-of-service. There's no point in moving equipment we won't be using, after all!

Apparently this (endless) list of work has me more stressed than I realized, because that's why I normally have 'festival nightmares.' (smile) Awake, it seems fine to me. But asleep is another thing...

In other unrelated news, Marilyn and I have been messing with our Google Desktop Gadgets (as I mentioned before). And we've been going to Encarta and taking a slew of random quizzes. (grin) To us, they seem like another form of computer games.

Oh! And I was having a bitch of a time getting connected to the internet via our WiFi downstairs today. I've no clue why, but I ended up having to recycle the router (again). We've got the same issue in the office, and the router is in a weird place that's hard to reach (thank, Kent). Oliver couldn't get connected at all while he was there... (sigh)

Anyway, I've got plenty to keep me busy (as usual). There aren't enough hours in the day! And right now I wish I was snoozing away. I've been seriously working on getting more sleep, though it isn't that easy to do!

Weather alert! It was more than 90 degrees here today and lovely. It's supposed to be hot again tomorrow, though the forecast says high 80's. Summer lingers, happily. Today was officially the first day of AUTUMN, so that's saying something, really...

Tags: 2009, auction, carol, enewsletter, excel, festival, google, it-manager, it-related, jeopardy, kent, mandy, marilyn, nightmare, oliver, peter, rich, ron-computers, september-2009, weather, wifi, work

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