Pure Gonzo Engineering

Friday, May 15, 2009

Like a Fool I am and I'll Always be.

I almost died yesterday. I was standing on the platform of a D8 track type tractor trying to open up the cab door. The engine enclosure door was sticking out blocking the cab door. I pushed the engine door in with my foot as I yanked on the cab door. The first attempt was unsuccessful, the second the cab door opened suddenly. I started to loose my balance falling backward. I caught myself before I fell backward down eight feet past the forged steel tracks onto the dirty concrete yard. Maybe I wouldn’t have died, but I would have been in some serious pain.

The shit never ends at work. Even when they say they’ve cut to the bone and they’re done. Turns out first and foremost they are liars. Perhaps more deceptive than flat out lying, but when someone says that when they lay you off, either rolling or indefinitely that they are going to subsidize up to half your salary, you think that means you’re going to get half your salary. Not quite. When you run the numbers an average single engineer making $75,000 will be making around 35% of his salary. One with a wife that doesn’t work with kids will be making about 45% of his salary. Whatever, the amount is what it is, but don’t be deliberately misleading.

Then talk of rolling layoffs when it was previously said they wouldn’t happen in R&D because they laid off 10%. Earlier today I was pretty convinced they would make us take them. Found out just recently they won’t be happening.

I really need to find a million idiots to give me a dollar. I can’t handle this shit. My mind is a delicate flower that can’t handle this emotional toll.

My tattoo has healed the best any of my tattoos ever have. After less than two weeks, it has no dry cracking areas, and no scabs. My guys at American Inkwell no longer recommend the wet method of healing a tattoo, but I think it’s way better than just letting it out to the air to heal. With the wet method you keep the tattoo covered in some sort of balm (I use Tat Wax) and saran wrap for the first three days, washing it every 3-4 hours keeping all the scab building stuff off of it.

My ten year high school reunion is coming up like in September. I’m not really sure how I feel about it. I only liked or was acknowledged by like a dozen or so people in high school, so if none of them show up I don’t really know what I’d do. So at that point what is the point? It kind of seems like a dick measuring contest.

Everyone rolls out their degrees (BS Mechanical Engineering University of Wisconsin Madison), and significant others (lovely intelligent caring wife), and awesome jobs (Hydraulic Test Engineer for Fortune 50 Company), and kids (Two highly intelligent superiorly advanced boys), and stuff (a house with two cars in the garage), and oh the places they’ve been (Cuba), and oh how wonderful they look (180 pounds of hockey toned muscle and tattoos).

I’ll have to see if any of my potato gun hommies will be attending. That may sway my decision.

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Saturday, May 02, 2009

Death is the debt that all men must pay

Well I didn't lose my job, or I wouldn't have gotten a $320 (good tattoos ain't cheap and cheap tattoos ain't good) tattoo, although I learned that isn't necessarily true.

I went to American Inkwell a little before noon on Saturday, and Kalib was finishing up the sketch. He tweaked a few things and by the time he got his station set up and the stencil on me it was about 12:30. We started on the coffin. I had all this nervous energy since it was right on my sternum. I was expecting the blinding pain of my elbow, or spine, but it wasn't as bad as I thought.

We chatted about this and that as he worked. Being a Saturday, all kinds of people were coming in for consultations and to set up appointments. Luckily Kalib stayed pretty focused on my tattoo since it was so large.

We talked about how apparently tattooing is recession proof. They were booking people for the third week in May. Every day until then they were full up with appointments. I'd heard before that tattooing was recession proof, but this kind of proves it. Kalib brought up a good point that people don't just get tattooed when they are happy. When shitty things happen people get tattooed to mark the ocassion.

Here's the part of the story that all you Republican's will love. Two annecdotal examples of people "wasting" their money. One woman who came in said she could come in any time during a certain week because she was going to be on rolling layoffs that week. Not brining in any money, but she was going to get tattooed. I mentioned that to Kalib, and then a second woman came in and said she had been permanently laid off so she could come in anytime to get inked. We just looked at each other and laughed. Tell all your Republican friends about the lazy assholes who are gaming unemployement so they can go get peace and love in Japanese tattooed on them.

When we got to the black shadding it was the pain I had been anticipating. Grinding that big cluster of needles of the shader into my sternum was exrutiating. We wrapped things up around 4:45. Three or so hours under the needle was enough for me. Once this is healed we'll finish the black shading and add some color. I think it's pretty bad ass. Chest pieces are just hard, carved out of wood.