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Author Topic: Harihead's Tangled Web  (Read 5168 times)

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Bobber

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #40 on: August 18, 2008, 02:58:53 PM »

Good to see you're still with us, Marie. All the best on the jobfront.
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #41 on: August 18, 2008, 03:32:58 PM »

Thanks so much, Cor! I'll take all the good vibes I can get. :)

It's good to see you!
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

Bobber

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #42 on: August 18, 2008, 03:34:32 PM »

Thanks. Suffering from a little depression myself at the moment. Possibly because of the opposite of you. There is too much work to be done and as a result I'm not doing enough!
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #43 on: August 19, 2008, 04:07:59 AM »

Send me some of your work. You will become happier, lighter. I will become a useful human being. Together, the world is ours!! I feel the triumph!!!
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

Bobber

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #44 on: August 19, 2008, 07:39:32 AM »

How is your Dutch at the moment?
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Bobber

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #45 on: September 30, 2008, 08:18:50 AM »

How are you Marie? Haven't seen you for a while.
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #46 on: October 05, 2008, 03:31:42 AM »

Hi, Cor!

I've been in a bit of a depression, actually. I came this close to a job, which keeps getting put on hold. So I'm continuing to burn through my savings while I watch my retirement portfolio lose 1/3 of its value due to this economic crisis, which by all accounts will only get worse. I'm wondering if I'll have any money left after all the mental midgets and compulsive gamblers in charge of our economy finish screwing up. I'm 50 so it's not an imminent crisis-- I'm not retiring in the next couple of years-- but it's worrying enough that it got to me.

I've decided I need more character. I'm determined to keep writing and doing what I can control, and let the crazy world just do what it does. People have been through worse. It's just that I had it good for so long-- 7 years a successful business with no end of clients, to suddenly dry up-- that was a shock. So I'm still adapting. But as I said, no immediate crises except my savings steadily going away. I suppose that's what they were there for, but it's still depressing.

Politics is a relief. I can phone or canvass for Obama, and it feels as if I'm doing something. Really, there are a large number of very good people in this country. It seems to me people are doing a little better at finding common cause, which is sweet. I always hated that Democrat vs Republican thing-- such a manufactured battle dreamed up by those who want to manipulate us. But the reality of talking to military guys who are concerned about their veterans benefits and body armor, and senior citizens who can't get health care, and working families who just can't make it any more-- there are far more things we have in common than differences. It's just that a campaign focuses on the differences. But to my relief, people seem wiser than the spin masters, so I'm hopeful.
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

Bobber

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #47 on: October 06, 2008, 07:53:20 PM »

Nice attitude Marie. Being a freelancer is a hard life sometimes, tell me about it. Good luck with everything you're doing. Keep up writing: remember we are the heart and soul of a nation.  ;D
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #48 on: October 06, 2008, 08:14:09 PM »

Right now I fear we're a nation of heartburn!

I really ought to get to work learning Dutch. Hey, my canvassing partner this weekend was Dutch! He moved here when he was 23 (he's over 70 now). Great guy, loved to chat up the people at the door. Maybe I can hire him as a tutor?
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

BlueMeanie

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #49 on: October 06, 2008, 10:48:59 PM »

Good luck to you Marie. Don't lose heart.
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #50 on: October 07, 2008, 04:58:35 AM »

Aw, thanks, Paul! I just had a pep talk from my wonderful writers group, so that helped as well.

I think I'm going to branch out into something kooky and different for me-- pet shelter worker, bookstore clerk, something really different, rather than looking for another "real" tech job. It will bring in some cash, and it could be fun, as I expect it will not tax my brain too much. I'll probably be mentally writing new stories the whole time I'm at work. Suggestions for zany changes of direction welcome!

It also helps to know that it's not just me. I belong to a forum of national science writers, people who've been freelancing a lot longer than I have. A number of them have reported a falloff in clients as well-- established writers with lots of contacts. Of course many people are still working; different parts of the country react differently. One guy who said he has a ton of work says his part of the country tends to behave opposite from the norm, so he's not surprised that some of us are work-free at the moment. But it's still an uncomfortable position to be in. My natural confidence had me thinking I could breeze through this slow-down like I did the last one-- but the Wall Street Idiots were too all-encompassing in their idiocy for me to avoid it this time, alas.
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

Penny Lane

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #51 on: November 11, 2008, 08:30:50 PM »

Quote from: 551
I belong to a forum of national science writers, people who've been freelancing a lot longer than I have.

What kind of science(s) are you interested in? :)

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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #52 on: November 12, 2008, 07:24:36 AM »

Biology and space, mostly. I just read an article about redefining the gene today. "Wow, look at that!" I thought. What a geek. Of course, I like science because I can make stories out of it-- that old sf angle. It's just lots of fun.
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

Penny Lane

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #53 on: November 12, 2008, 08:33:15 AM »

^  That's cool.  I'm not a huge sciencey kind of person, but I admire people who are actually good at it.  My husband studied astrophysics all throughout college and sometimes I try and talk to him about outer space.  My questions don't always make sense but he'll still sit and listen to me (LOL).
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #54 on: November 18, 2008, 12:01:46 AM »

Just an announcement to all the kind people who have been concerned:

I have work. Finally, 2 1/2 months after I applied and interviewed, I'm getting a 6-month contract with a very good company in Boulder. I'm quite relieved! I've been competing with literally hundreds of people for every job opening in the past few months. I got in at this place though, as usual, though a personal recommendation. Thank goodness I have friends! Because the economic situation here is much worse than I think is generally acknowledged, and I believe it will get even worse before it gets better.

Anyway, assuming I pass my drug test, criminal background check, credit check, character references, "lifestyle" mode inquiry, and all the other intrusive garbage I have to submit to to get a job these days, I will start on Monday the 24th. Hooray! So I'll have income again, but the down side is I can no longer work at home. I'll have to commute every day to an office. Still, I'm very grateful to have found something and feel all the luck of it. Actually, I'm still a little nervous. I don't suppose I'll believe I'm out of the woods until I actually report to work and they let me in.

Anyway, thanks for your patience with me. It's been a difficult and crazy year. I'm so grateful that Obama got elected. I hope he'll turn around some of the crazy destructive policies the past administration has implemented. Hugs all around!
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />

Bobber

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #55 on: November 18, 2008, 08:08:27 AM »

Good for you Marie. Good luck on the job!
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BlueMeanie

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #56 on: November 18, 2008, 08:24:23 AM »

Well done girl! How long did you work from home then? And what the hell is a '"lifestyle" mode inquiry'? :-/
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Andy Smith

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #57 on: November 18, 2008, 11:17:27 AM »

congralulations Harihead!  ;)
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          Turn off your mind, Relax and float downstream. It is not dying

Geoff

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #58 on: November 18, 2008, 01:16:15 PM »

My congratulations as well. Don't tell them about the Obama thing, though: I imagine by "lifestyle mode inquiry" they mean "Would Phyllis Schlafly like you?"  :)
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harihead

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Re: Harihead's Tangled Web
« Reply #59 on: November 18, 2008, 04:37:57 PM »

Thanks, guys!

I worked from home for 7 years-- or 8.5 years if you don't count a 4-month stint at a magazine. So it will be a bit of a shock to go into an office every day. I'm just now washing and ironing my new wardrobe, which is desperately needed, as clothes don't look quite so shiny after 9 years of hanging in the closet growing out of fashion.  

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And what the hell is a '"lifestyle" mode inquiry'? :-/
That's the thing that I was most wondering about, too. It turns out it's a code they assign to you based on location, income, and likely spending patterns, stored in a database for easy sale to companies because America is, after all, all about money. It really doesn't have to do with social activities, which is what I initially thought and was repelled by.

So, "lifestyle" means, when a company sends me a solicitation for money, they'll say, "Can you contribute $20, $30, or $40?" or "Can you contribute $200, $300, or $400?" They have all sorts of stuff on record about me (and every other American) that really feels intrusive. I'm a rotten consumer so I suppose there's less on me than on the average shopper, but wherever you go, if you use any electronic device (like your credit card or the sales register), your transaction is recorded for posterity. Then they sell it.

The good news is I've passed my criminal and driving record check. They aren't doing a credit check, but they've sufficiently determined I have character. So that just leaves the drug test to clear on Thursday. What fun!

Just implant the microchip here, please. it will make things so much easier.

Only 6 more days of freedom! I really have to write that solar thermal power article, because I don't think I'll have the mind-share for it after I start. Thanks for all your good wishes!
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All you've got to do is choose love.  That's how I live it now.  I learned a long time ago, I can feed the birds in my garden.  I can't feed them all. -- Ringo Starr, Rolling Stone magazine, May 2007<br />
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