This is partly to test WordPress’s new Blog-by-email. We’ll see how it works.

Yesterday I received a phone call from Rackspace, with a variation of that dreaded message. “We’ve decided to move forward with other candidates.”

I felt kinda like some of the people on Millionaire must feel when they’ve been going for the million dollars, and got the answer wrong and going home with $25,000.

Let me explain. What I had were two options, I could work at Rackspace for ~$45k/yr doing something I would really enjoy or I could work at a camp doing something I would also enjoy for the summer making ~$150/wk. I had 2 really great interviews at Rackspace, even they said the second one went really well, but apparently not good enough.

I’m trying to keep positive, I’m still applying for 2-3 jobs including one at JMU, and working at camp will still pay all our bills (and let us catch up on the ones we’re having to skip this month) along with Kelly’s summer job. I’ll just have to start applying again as summer comes to a close.

I’m particularly looking for IT work within VA, and I don’t mind commuting up to 2 hours each way in order to take a job worth anywhere from $30k up (So from the DC Metro area down to Blacksburgish, and out to Richmond. I’m in the Harrisonburg/Rockingham County area right now). I intend to relocate if the job is at the outer reaches of that range along with my wife and puppy. I have reliable transport, and while I have no formal computing qualifications I have professional and personal experience with PHP/MySQL, computer hardware testing, computer software installation and general computer troubleshooting and problem solving. I’ve worked on a service desk (Level 1 and 2) for a 5000 user organization supporting Novell Netware and Active Directory (on the same network) as well as Alcatel based PBX systems. I’ve also been administrating Linux servers for several years. I’m happy to take an entry-level position (Helpdesk, Desktop support, etc), though I’d like a company with good promotion paths that will allow me to progress beyond, as I’d like to move into server administration, and possibly network administration also.

So while I continue to look for work, if you or someone/an organization you know is looking for an IT worker, let me know about them, or let them know about me!

NZ Roads are Better than VA’s

New Zealand roads. They’re often considered not great by New Zealands inhabitants. The tar and gravelled roads are poor on tires, the purely tar-sealed roads are slippery in wet. Most peple can think of something bad to say about them until they drive overseas.

Having lived in New Zealand since birth, and driving regularly since I was 19 or 20, including two trips from Wellington to Hamilton and back, I consider myself fairly experienced. I’ve lived in Virginia in the USA since April, and if there is one thing that scares me more than anything, it is driving at night in the rain.

catseyesSee, in New Zealand we have cheap little things all over the place called reflectors. Red ones either side, and white or yellow ones in the middle (signifying whether you can or can’t pass, respectively). Here? There are just lines painted on the road. That is perfect on fine days. It’s even pretty good at night. Sometimes during the day when it’s raining. Couple together darkness and road surfaces, and the paint is almost invisible. There are NO reflective markings whatsoever, unless you happen to be driving on a major road like the interstate. We regularly drive on a Virginia highway (VA-42) but there are no reflective markings on this road. I’m also not aware of any reflective markers in Harrisonburg, either on US-33 or US-11. I really don’t know how people here manage to not have serious accidents more often.

The other reason I say NZ’s roads are better, and this one may not be so fair as the reflective markers, but the Interstate roads in parts of Richmond, and in parts of Washington DC the road surface changes from tar-seal to concrete. I understand concrete may be cheaper and quicker to set on such busy roads etc, but is it REALLY that hard to CLOSE A LANE to reseal it properly? I would hazard a guess that they don’t need to be resealed any more than once a year, I’d suggest they take a summer night to reseal a lane at a time in 100 yard stretches. Close a SINGLE LANE between say, MIDNIGHT and 6AM. You could probably even have it closed another hour or two if it was facing away from rush hour.

So, New Zealanders, be very happy with your roading system, and be patient when Tranzit or the local council decides to close a lane of road during the off-peak so that you can have a more pleasant driving experience. Cliche as it is, there are people in other countries who have it worse off than you, and I don’t mean in the 3rd world.