User-agent: * Allow: / Trenton Butcher Block: A little update

"Our Liberties We Prize, Our Rights We Will Defend."

Commentary on national and local events from the standpoint of a Trenton city resident and state worker.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A little update

I haven't posted anything in the last couple months.  Right now, I want to bring my readers up to date and share some information.

Monday is my wedding anniversary.  I been married 24 years, and I took my wife out today to Malaga, which is a nice Spanish restaurant on Lalor Street.  It is Spanish as in Europe, not Mexican or anything like that.  It is fairly formal, with a Terra cotta floor and white tablecloths.  A big chandler hangs in the front dining room.  We had something fairly simple and very un-Spanish.  Pork Chops.  They give you three nice sized pork chops for $20.  You get with them string beans and carrots , Spanish rice with saffron and homemade potato chips.

The place is owned by a woman in her 50s who works as the hostess.  I don't know if she still does it, but she used to put on flamenco dancing shows.   Well our dinner conversation turned to flamenco dancing and the the name Carmen Amaya came up.  So  you haven't heard of Carmen Amaya.  She was only probably the best flamenco dancer of all time.  Here is a clip of her in action

I came home and looked at a few clips of her dancing and also listened to Ada Falcon, another late great star from south of the border.  She had an interesting life.  Her first lover was a politician and he was assassinated by a hit squad sent out by the president of Argentina.  Her second lover was her bandleader.  He cheated on her.  She then fell in love with a homosexual and caught him in bed with a man.  So in 1942 she did the only thing you could expect from somebody with that much bad luck.  She joined the convent and became a nun.  When she died a few years ago, she was in her 90s.  She once owned a diamond that was a gift from the majaraja of India that was worth millions (another Liz Taylor special).  She was rich back in the day and was noted for buzzing around Buenos Aires in her bigh car showing off her flashy clothes and furs.  Yet when she died she was penniless and only 3 people came to her funeral.

Here is one of her songs, Besos de Miel.   Her stuff sounds old as dirt because the bandleader Francisco Canaro was very conservative musically and still used a small chamber orchestra at a time when most bandleaders went to big bands.  But she probably has the best voice of the old time tango singers.

So much for the dead "girlfriends".

At work, the job is real hectic.  Cristie brought in a gentleman from the Heldrich Center to be our director and he basically tried turning us into real research economists rather than the half-ass hacks we used to be.  So far I wrote something called an Industry report, the one on Trade, Logistics & Distribution is nearly finished and comes in at over 50 pages long.  I also wrote another 20 pages on the construction industry.  That took about 2 months.  The project was complicated by getting a new computer with Office 2010 on it.  My old one had Office 2003.  Nothing like fighting Power Point to make graphs and charts.  That on top of researching a whole bunch of crap.

Well the man who used to work in the state data center and handled our web stuff got promoted and left the floor at the End of July.  Walter was the third webmaster we had that got promoted.  Since Christie doesn't believe in hiring anybody to replace the people that left, I got drafted and will become the new webmaster on  September 12.  No it wasn't my idea.  The director offered me the job, said he wouldn't force me to take it but made it very clear he wanted me to take it.  I know zip about making webpages or uploading material with Interwoven or writing SAS programs or doing work in Foxpro and Fortran.  Sounds like the job from hell, doesn't it.  (By the way, do you know any other place on God's green earth that uses Interwoven instead of Dreamweaver or that still uses Foxpro or Fortran.  I don't.  So I'll learn antique software and become a computer guy for my last 15 months on the job. 

Target date for retirement is December 31, 2012.  That's when I plan to hand up the spikes.

Hey it could be worse.  Lots of people in the real world get laid off and don't have jobs.  Instead, I got an ex-bar manager turned director of a floor that does economics and statistics who butters me up and convinces me (a farm operation and Agronomy double-major) to take a job as an IT guy.  My qualification is supposed to be that I am a quick learner.  I know I didn't get picked because of my education or work background.  The worst that could happen is I get bounced out of that job and sent back to the Bureau of Labor Market Information.

No comments:

Post a Comment