DIY

What to do when there's no one at the office (and a Happy Thanksgiving message)

I went into the office the day before Thanksgiving, and the first clue as to what kind of day it was going to be could be found in the parking lot. It was practically empty. What to do?

I went into the office the day before Thanksgiving, and the first clue as to what kind of day it was going to be could be found in the parking lot. It was practically empty. What to do?

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Well, I'm sure not opposed to having a slow day. No print jobs getting stuck in the queue; no e-mails getting lost in cyberspace; no looming deadlines; nobody asking for a back-up file from exactly 2 days and 6 hours ago; and no crisis for my rapid response team (which is me). It seems that today we were several bones short of a skeleton crew.

Since it was a day to do a lot of random things, perhaps I'll lighten the blog a little by sharing some of those random thoughts.

This is a good time to plan what I need to do between now and whenever, which is usually measured by year's end. The biggest thing I'll be doing is upgrading the hard drives in the file servers. It seems that I run short of drive space every year or two, and this is no exception -- they're nearing 90 percent full. That'll be a Saturday job in the next week or two, so I can do it without network interruption for the users.

I saw that Micro Center is having a great sale on the Friday after Thanksgiving. If there's one near you, check out the low prices on their terabyte drives (and the other sale items). I plan to buy four Seagate terabyte drives for $120 each. The Western Digital drive is only $100. I've been partial to Seagate of late, but maybe I'll go for the savings. Which should I buy, the Seagate or the WD? Unless someone can convince me otherwise, I'll spend the extra $$ and go with the Seagate, a brand that's been good to me over the past few years.

It's also a good time to go through all this stuff that's been piling up on my desk -- or scattered about my desk, however you want to define it. I'm sure I'm not alone by using those sticky notes to remind myself of something or other. I have four of them stuck on my monitor and a lot more scattered about my desk. Let's see ..... counting ..... still counting ..... twenty seven of those things. Is that a lot? Going through them, I see that most can be tossed out:

• Project numbers that have been recorded.

• Phone calls that have already been made. (Do you ever call a phone number just to see whose it is? No, I'm not gonna call that one. I'm not that curious.)

• Error messages that I researched awhile back.

• Some note about a 1911-D, MS-64, $2-1/2 Gold Piece.

• CTB versus STB (you AutoCAD folks might understand that one).

• Model number and serial number of ..... something.

• Yep, I already placed that order -- about a month ago.

• That e-mail has been sent, and the guy's now in my address book.

• Who in the heck is Mr. Biggs, and why did I need to call him?

• Did that ..... and that ..... and that.

• Read about Len Smith. (He was an artist who used a typewriter to create his art. He used the one-finger method while one hand had to steady the other. Look him up.)

• I have absolutely no idea what that one means.

• Appointments that have been ..... oops, I wonder if I can reschedule?

Am I the only one who uses those sticky notes in such an organized manner? How about that? I got rid of them all.

Thanksgiving is a day when many people reflect on those things in their lives for which they're thankful, and since we're currently writing/reading in this forum, it's a good time to wish a Happy Thanksgiving to everyone at TR: the PTB (Powers That Be) who keep the site humming along and who share their experiences and wisdom with us. Thanks for the great things you do. And especially to the members, who not only do the same, but they give this little corner of cyberspace a real sense of community. I can honestly say that my job would be much more difficult without the people and resources here at TR. Many thanks to all of you who've sent me those kind e-mails, who've taken the time to read and reply to my blogs, and who've helped me out over the years or have given me a chuckle or an interesting conversation.

And for something totally different and off-the-wall, how about a Thanksgiving breakfast tip?

The best scrambled eggs: For every three eggs cooked, separate one yolk and set aside before mixing the eggs. Also for every three eggs cooked, add a slice of American Cheese (don't add anything else). Cook in a buttered skillet over a medium heat, continually stirring, folding, and blending together. When they're about 75-80 percent fully cooked and the cheese is melted and blended in, add the separated egg yolk, quickly and thoroughly blend it into the cooked eggs. Finish cooking to a desired consistency -- but the purpose of adding the yolk at the end is for moist and fluffy eggs, so don't overcook. They'll also be the best and brightest yellow color you've ever seen. Sprinkle some chopped cilantro on the top of the eggs before serving. Serve with a couple slices of bacon and a buttered English Muffin. Everyone I've ever cooked these eggs for tell me they're the best they've ever had. (Of course, I never complain whenever someone cooks for me!)

I hope you don't mind that I deviated a bit from the usual user support kind of subjects and instead lightened the mood a bit. But it seemed like an okay thing to do.

12 comments
jeremial-21966916363912016372987921703527
jeremial-21966916363912016372987921703527

One way I got away from the sticky notes (without really giving them up) is to use the freeware tool Stick-IT from Singer's Creations. Not only can I create virtual sticky notes right on my desktop, I can send the note to someone else on the network (those "hey before I forget to ask you for the 10th time" type notes). Then when cleanup day comes around, I can delete them and still save a tree :)

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Okay, before you groan here me out. Microwaved scrambled eggs can be the fluffiest, lightest eggs of all, omeletes too but they take ages to do properly. for each egg, 1tsp melted butter, 1 tblsp milk. 45 seconds - 1 minute per egg, depending on your microwave (stop to pull egg of sides of dish halfway through cooking) they continue to set after beign removed so don't let them cook until dry in teh microwave. Seriously, I know its simple and I thought every one knew it but so many people think you can't do scrambled eggs in the microwave. But (being a scrambled egg lover myself) I find them just fantastic.

stoffell
stoffell

Good to read sometimes it's possible to do some catching up. About the sticky notes.. I use a wiki to record all documentation/needs/.. and I have a special page dedicated to my todo's.. That way I don't need any notes and I can access my complete list from every location. It takes a while to get used to it but after that, you don't want to go back to sticky notes :-) cheers

Joe_R
Joe_R

All it takes is changing old habits. Thanks....

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Thick-cut back bacon, hash browns with chopped onions, and drop biscuits. (Not to mention the coffee. :D ) edit: And Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, and to the rest of the TR community as well.

Joe_R
Joe_R

Too many of those side orders seem to stay with me, if you know what I mean. I'm still carrying around too many side orders from years ago! Thanks......

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

I can only eat that kind of breakfast once or twice a month. I've become amazingly adept at doctoring oatmeal and shredded wheat so breakfast isn't boring...

Michael Kassner
Michael Kassner

Thank you for the reminder, Joe. My day was a bit different. I support several major airlines. One of the airline's high-use router/circuit covering most of North America start flapping on the day before Thanksgiving? I seem to remember that this is supposed to be one of the most heavily-traveled days of the year. So, my day was far from calm. Yet I consider myself to be amazingly fortunate as you have reminded me. Also, how did you know that I love breakfasts? Kudos to you sir and a very special day of thanks.

Joe_R
Joe_R

It's good to be busy as well. Too many slow days will make a person start wondering. On breakfast, isn't that everyone's favorite? Later....

Joe_R
Joe_R

Re the original piece: http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/helpdesk/?p=319 Just some random thoughts - a GREAT price on terabyte drives - a Happy Thanksgiving message - and a tip for some great scrambled eggs. (Yea, I know - kinda' off-the-wall.) Happy Thanksgiving to all my TR peers.

Michael Jay
Michael Jay

and thanks for the breakfast tips, sounds like what we will have for Thanksgiving breakfast.

Joe_R
Joe_R

And thanks back at you!

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