Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Somewhat Odd









What was I thinking?

I didn't get that job I talked about earlier. It was a dream come true job. At Park Road Post which is the post production facility that was set up by Peter Jackson. It's one of a kind all-in-one business - they have studios, stages, sound production, film developing, telecine, weta digital next door, in-house cinema with pre-release showings to the staff, staff discount cafe on site, gym, three furnished apartments for visiting directors or if you are working late.

It was a very fast hire. An ad came through, I applied at 6pm, they rang me 9am the next day, two days later I had an interview, three days after that I had a second interview. I was so certain I was going to get it. I needed to get it. It was the career start with capital letters.

Sure, there were going to be sacrifices - I live in Karori, it's in Miramar, they wanted 7.30am starts. I was going to be getting up 5.30am every day to get there by the start time, and was already looking at trademe rentals to move to Miramar with my first paycheck. I was ready to do all that.

Oh, suppose I should say what the job is. Chemist. Making sure all those bleach, fixer, developer solutions were of correct concentrations, consistent throughout the shooting of the film, troubleshooting problems that film operators might encounter. Quite a large lab and sole charge. All standardised with Kodak ImageCare.

Really, it was fantastic dream job, no matter the sacrifices. I don't even know what the pay was going to be, it doesn't even matter.

The HR lady said it came so very very close between me and one other applicant. But apparently he pulled out an unexpected surprise of having had film experience. That sealed the deal I guess. She said she'd like to keep my CV on file and to call me in a few months when something else comes up.

Sure, that sounds hopeful, but who's going to pay my bills next month, and how am I going to afford Christmas? I had so many people cheering, well-wishing, praying for me. Many people driving me, lending me clothes for the interview, offering interview tips and answering my questions. I feel like I've let them all down somehow. Not just because of this job, but just overall - three years of a degree, so much support all around, and I have nothing to show for it. My flatmates are working as a house painter, check out operator and shoe salesperson. I want to be able to utilise my degree.

Maybe it was all a silly idea from 2004, maybe I should have stayed in IT. I've run out of science jobs now, applied for everything there was, and the ads have dried up. I'm applying for IT jobs, and they want to know how I explain the last three years. Not here nor there now. Will probably be working in a supermarket next month. What was I thinking?

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Degree

I have managed to pass all my papers this year, woohoo! I now qualify for letters after my name - BBMedSc (MPMC). Of course I don't get those letters or the piece of paper until about May 2007. I'm still undecided whether to go to the ceremony or just get it by courier. In the three years of this degree, I have got one C and two C+, I think that's quite a good run.

Tomorrow I find out if I've got the fancy pants job I applied for (I've had two interviews already and have half the country rooting and praying for me, so it'll be a great big disappointment if I don't get it). Will say more about it later.

Have watched some promotional videos about Wii (already out in the States, coming here 7th of December) and it's so new and revolutionary that I have decided to get it. I of course need money first (see previous paragraph), but I will still have it on my wishlist until it arrives. The fact that you can play a tennis game as if you were really playin tennis is fantastic.

Played some NWN2, it's not bad at all, I'm enjoying it. A few bugs here and there and it gets somewhat chuggy if you play it for a few hours in a row, but there are upcoming patches that should resolve it.

Dinner tonight - mashed potatoes. Those instant ones that make half a metric tonne which you can then eat for the next week and a half. It's great.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

What Tarot Card are you?


You are The High Priestess


Science, Wisdom, Knowledge, Education.


The High Priestess is the card of knowledge, instinctual, supernatural, secret knowledge. She holds scrolls of arcane information that she might, or might not reveal to you. The moon crown on her head as well as the crescent by her foot indicates her willingness to illuminate what you otherwise might not see, reveal the secrets you need to know. The High Priestess is also associated with the moon however and can also indicate change or fluxuation, particularily when it comes to your moods.


What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Final Financial Frustration

So you think they just give money away at the Dole Bludger's office? BZZZ WRONG!
You want to apply for an unemployment benefit? Something to cover your bills while you wait for jobs to close applications, shortlist people, interview potential employees, and fill the job? Some money to make sure you don't bounce your rent payments?

Nope, no money for j00, come back one year!
Here are two possible scenarios if you want to get some financial assistance having just finished your Uni exams:
1. Student Unemployment Hardship from Studylink.
2. Unemployment Benefit from WINZ.

Both pay exactly the same amount. For both offices, you have exactly the same client ID number. Can they talk to each other? NO! That's against the Privacy Act. WHAT?!
It's like saying Telecom and Xtra can't talk to each other even though your bill arrives in the same envelope.

Ok ok, that aside, let's investigate your options further:
1. Studylink - so so easy to apply for, fill out the form, show last couple of payslips if you had any, and your ID, done! The catch: you have to hand in your form in person in town, which they then send off to their processing centre, then it takes them about four days to process it, THEN your one week stand down begins, and only then do you get paid, no back payments.

2. WINZ - you have to attend a seminar called WRK4U (txt speak is the new black, ask any NCEA student), I didn't make it up, that's what was written on the overhead they presented. The seminars are only held at 8.30 in the morning, and the examples of points being discussed are Why is working better than the dole? and How to make an appointment with a case manager. So you think, I've attended a seminar, give me the dole, right? Wrong. You have to go home, ring the call centre, and make an appointment to see a case manager. Can you make an appointment right there at the office? No, go home, ring the call centre. When you come for the meeting, make sure to bring with you nine pieces of documentation, ranging from easy ones like your ID, to mind boggling ones like proof of 52 weeks of income. Sure, you'll say, Just ring IRD and get a statement, or Get your landlord to mail you a copy of the tenancy agreement. Of course that means waiting for a week or so to get all those documents together, then you make the appointment, then you see the case manager, then you get paid. Bonus: the one week stand down period is counted from the day you called them to get scheduled for WRK4U seminar, and you'll get backpay. Another bonus: if you get a job, they'll give you "bridging support", i.e. money to tie you over while you wait for the phat pay checks to start rolling in. The catch: no matter what option I take, I still won't get paid next week.

Executive Summary: I can't afford rent and bills for the rest of the month. This includes the monthly bills for November I still haven't paid. Whoever said dole was the easy way out obviously hasn't tried applying for one. On the job front: declined for MAF, declined for Aotea Pathology, didn't quite make it for Fujitsu (job was gone after my interview with the recruitment agency), still waiting to hear from Impac, ACC, Wakefield GE Research, and ESR.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Blegh

Had a job interview yesterday with Aotea Pathology. Didn't get it. More frustrating is the fact they told me I was one out of three. So my CV must be looking really good to get me that far, but either I smell funny or my interview technique blows goats.

One of the flatmates moved out (the smelly one), the other three have all got jobs lined up already. Although, admittedly, they're not working in their graduation field, but just in shops. One does have a 'real' job, but it won't start till January.

I've attempted the IT path today - sent my CV off to someone at Manpower. I just don't want to work on a helpdesk, that'd be worse than Woolworths.

So yeah, pretty depressing, haven't really moved from the bed today. Been fiddling with my Wacom tablet, but not sure what's up with it - the nib end isn't working anymore, only the eraser side. Been trying to install latest drivers and whatnot, but the internet is fubared, took me 15 minutes just to get a driver downloaded.

Must go raid now. Oh, if you feel like getting me a Christmas present and don't know what to get - WoW TCG boosters and starters are all the rage at the moment.

Friday, November 03, 2006

A Graduate in Progress

With all the God's might and various other fortunate placements of time and space, I might have passed my exams. Psych on Tuesday, Cellular Regulation on Wednesday. It was only last night, but already it feels like a week has passed. Must be some sort of defense mechanism to deter me from going more insane.

I did get flowers though, was very nice and a total surprise. Usually I anticipate such things, but this time I didn't even think of it, so it was fantastic.

Won't know the exam results for about two weeks, but I'm sure the internet will be the first to know if I fail. Or pass. Whichever now really. Hoping hoping hoping.

How amazing would it feel to be a graduate. Oh it's probably nothing, people get degrees every year. I don't know, I just never thought I'd have stuck to it. Feels great. Don't feel like I know much more than I did three years ago though, so finding it a bit hard to 'shine' at the job interviews.

Still have an Open Poly assignment due on Monday, and its exam on the 16th, but they don't really matter - easy paper (VB.NET) and even if I fail that one, it won't change anything. You think it's a defeatist point of view, I call it umm something. Laziness is probably the right word. But I'll get it done, I always do. I procrastinate forever, and then BAM, stuff gets done. Like a charging up the combo points... maybe not.

Piggy hasn't progressed past taking food from my hand. Tomorrow I shall try turning his cage a bit to see if we can spice things up.

Sleep now I must.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Title

I have trouble coming up with titles to my posts - something that is catchy yet relevant to what I'm writing. It's especially hard when I'm writing about nothing in particular.

I installed the Dark Messiah game. It disappointed. It seems like a great game, however they changed from the old school Might and Magic feel and adopted the much too common now Oblivion/Morrowind feel. While it's a "yay!" for all the guys out there, it's a big "boo" from me because I get motion sickness from first person mouselook games. So I only got so far as the end of the tutorial before I had to lie down and hold onto the floor while it was spinning out from under me. Sure, your game looks great, and you can incorporate many interactive controls into it this way (Parry! Attack! Kick! Pick up that crate and throw it!), but you forgot about the poor un-co geeks out there (i.e. me) who can't coordinate three button presses at the same time, and get queezy even just looking at the new and improved graphics. After the rigmarole of copying nine gigabytes of .rar files, and extracting them into a giant ISO, and then installing the game, and then running it, and sorting out the optimal settings for it to work, this is rather disappointing. But my boyfriend loved Oblivion, and still plays it when WoW servers are down, so I'm sure he'll enjoy the newest Might and Magic.

I found a website that gives detailed instructions on how to train a bird, so I've been trying to apply the techniques to Piggy the Budgie. I knew all these tricks all along of course (thank you Psyc 122), but somehow seeing it written down by someone else makes it a more viable resource and thus I find the patience to stick with it. So far, I've got him eating out of my hand. But he still gets vicious when he gets sick of me, or when I try to pat him. Angry angry little bird. Suppose takes after the owner :P

Saturday

Nice day today. Went to post yet another job application. This one could be good - it's right in the middle of the city. Bought a copy of The Office - the American version - turns out it's just as crap as the British one. Boohoo $30 down the drain. The awkward silences are just a bit too much, although the actors are mildly more attractive.
Watched the latest episodes of Boston Legal and Heroes. Both fantastic shows. And next week House is back from the three week break. Yay more TV goodness. Love binge-watching TV shows, I do.
Played the beta of Supreme Commander, really hoggy and not very easy to play because of it, but was fun for a little while. Installing the Dark Messiah Might and Magic at the moment, looking forward to playing that.

Heroes the TV show is actually so good that it even has its own blog, written by one of the characters. Great integration of fiction and reality. When orcs of Orgrimmar start having blogs, I'll surrender my life to the fiction of fiction. Viva la Internet!

Friday, October 27, 2006

Friends with Money

Went to see Friends with Money tonight. Real cool movie. The type of movie that leaves you feeling nothing. Not excited, not motivated, not sad, not happy, just numb and just relaxed I guess. It's really a movie about nothing. It's sort of like panning in to someone's life, watching for a bit, and then panning out again. It reminded me of Closer - another movie that I really enjoyed, but most people around me said "what on earth was that about?!". Don't know why I like them, just feel so serene afterwards. Perhaps because they sap all the worries out of you, like watching the ocean - just waves rushing in and breaking, and rushing in again. Or realising that other people have the same crazy every day things happen in their lives too. The dialogue really makes the movie. Both movies, actually. It could, of course, be to the fact that they both have a lot of famous actors in them. Who knows...

Gosh, I really wish I had more money though. The "more" is redundant there actually, because technically I have none. L-O-L

By the way, the new Firefox 2 is awesome because it has integrated spell check with custom inbuilt dictionary, so just like Word but everywhere.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Two exams next week

So instead of studying I turn to Blogger. Naturally.

This weekend has been more of a yo-yo than my little mind can handle. The Saturday morning saw perfect blue skies, and since then it has been "Gusty winds" and "heavy rain warnings". Been to the WF LAN, got really tired, met a lot of people, played a lot of WoW.

The interpersonal relationships have been down, down, and really low down. Then a period of recovery proved that not all is lost. I shall try to be good from now on, consciously so. I'm lucky to have the second chance really. Is that cryptic enough? To people that know me, I bet it's as clear as every other time the same kind of thing happened. But I'll make sure everything is good this time. I really will try.

I found the blog of Scott Adams, the guy who is the maker of Dilbert. I've put a link on the left there. Because it's awesome. In fact, I'm going to try affirmations he mentions as soon as I convince myself to get out of this warm cosy bed.

Also The Cute Overload blog. Photos, no mental substance, but great funnies to look at.

I made a perch for my bird out of a big carrot. He seems to enjoy it. He can sit on it and eat it too.

I have links to cafepress at the bottom of the page, but I really want to be making my own designs for people to buy. Any suggestions? I'm usually good on implementation, but short on arty ideas. Nut and Bee, however, now that's some talent (linked on the left too).

Gosh, this post is just full of plugs. Perhaps karma will repay me with some more visits to the site!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

First day of Summer Holidays

Do I still get to call it Summer Holidays if I'm not planning to going back to study next year? I guess I'm undecided on that part.

Yesterday I had a lab report due, so couldn't really relax. Today the plan was to blob and have a first day of break (before starting to study for exams). But instead I ended up fiddling with Blogger and various other websites to make my blog look better. Maybe if I posted a bit more, it'd make itself look better.

I've now put a few links to websites I frequently visit, and I also have a "I'm currently Reading this book" link on the left there - just in case you want something to read and/or maybe discuss.

I haven't heard from the MAF job still, nor any of the other jobs, but at the same time I haven't been declined from any either, so still hoping.

There is a LAN for my WoW Guild this weekend, so that should be good I hope, barring any e-drama and e-wrist-slashing.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

The game

So I received the game I'd won on the radio - MediEvil Resurrection. It's a PSP game, I don't have a PSP. What do I do with it now?

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Technology and Laziness

So instead of programming this silly VB.NET assignment, I'm browsing podcasts and contributing to blowing our monthly traffic cap.

Let's talk comedians - it's damn hard to find good comedy on the podcasts selection. Most of the stuff is video now. I want just something funny in the background while I do my assignments, not something to look at - I have plenty of TV episodes to watch later.

Sunday Star Times has the best comedy I could ever ask for. Raybon Kan. Somehow, every Sunday he writes something I was thinking about that very week. Even the "Why do we have cemeteries?" this week. How odd. Today I found out he has a myspace account. Oh Shame. Everyone knows that Blogspot or your own domain blog is how it's meant to be done. Myspace is for emo kids, along with livejournal. Also, Raybon Kan's myspace account doesn't actually have any entries - just a description and a bunch of friend links. Well at least from there I found out that Bic Runga has a blog too. Even though it says on her MySpace account that it's maintained by her marketing team, it's still nice to pretend that she writes some of the entries herself.

So yeah, I wish Raybon Kan was more "accessible". I'm a really big fan, but sometimes you realise that the celebrities only care for the pay and ratings, not the actual fans. Them's the breaks I suppose. They get tired of all the attention I'm sure.

But then again, there's Opinionistas and Dooce that have reached a celebrity status and are still accessible to the general public - they reply to emails and meet people. I guess it's really because they were bloggers first, famous second.

So far on my podcasts selection I've got Penny Arcade Downloadable Content, Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing, Hope is Emo, Jamie Oliver, Penn Radio, and USA TODAY's Pop Candy, and Futures in Biotech. I had Comedy Central: Stand-Up (Video) - too short for a video, Happy Tree Friends - too much to download, and I think I had some other cartoons but couldn't be bothered.

Now, did you know you can download current TV shows on iTunes now? Stupid iTunes store and its "Not available in your Country" message. At two dollars per episode, I'd be so keen to download them. It just seems so much easier than torrenting.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Only a week to go!

Monday begins the last week of my University study. The last week of lectures, ever. Amazing isn't it. Kinda sad too - hard to leave something so interesting and fun behind. But I'll feel all much better about it all when I can finally go a week without worrying how I'll pay my bills.

I've applied for a job at MAF Biosecurity in Wallaceville. I got shortlisted and had an interview. Apparently I'm up against five other people. Nervous. It's a four months contract to cover someone's pregnancy leave, and in that respect, the job is perfect - good experience over summer, while still giving me the option to go back to University to do Honours. And if I stick with working, it's yet another entry on my CV.

The interview was quite scary - 17 pre-printed questions, the panel members went in circles asking them, three at a time. Very strange, but I guess it is a government department. Seems like a very nice team too - everyone is young, and they all seem quite chirpy.

Would be good if I get it. If not, I guess I can stick it out with the old folks for a bit longer. I suppose I never posted that I am a care provider for the elderly now. Just a part time job - useful because I can work around my lecture times. Frustrating at time and the pay is awful, but at the same time it feels good to be needed by someone. I have three clients - one I just vaccuum her house, another I take shopping and to the hairdresser, and the third, hmm not really sure what I do with him - we clean the house and he brings in more stuff the next day.

The pay is so bad that in the two months that I've been working there I earned less money than my boyfriend earns in one week. I suppose doesn't help that my hours are sporadic - 13 one week, two the next.

My exams are on the 31st, 1st, and an Open Polytechnic one on the 16th. But no lectures as of 16th of October, so plenty of time to work and study. If I get the Wallaceville job, I can study on the train/bus - one hour trip each way every day.

In fact I should writing a project for the Open Poly assignment right this minute as it's due on Monday, but I saw that Blogger now has a new fandangly interface and just had to check it out.

Oh oh, I won a PSP game on the radio today. Woot!

Friday, June 30, 2006

Hiatus

After quite a long break, I thought I'd update my blog. It's not so much that I have something to write about, but I've been fiddling with various Google account settings and they provide numerous nifty things that I wanted to try out.

Today is my last day at ERMA NZ. Been working here since Easter. It was a project, so they're not extending my contract. Looking for jobs elsewhere now, applied at so many places I don't even remember what they were. I will take next week off (as it's also Uni holidays) and just blob, but once Uni starts up again, I will go full swing into search mode. All my lectures next semester finish at 10 and 12, so I will have a heap of spare time in which I should try and earn some cash. Constantly living in the negatives is becoming rather grating.

Funny to look down the page and see writing about Physiology exams last year, because I've just sat the exam for the follow up paper last week. I got a B. Not bad considering I thought I was going to fail and even applied for an aegrotat.

Been fiddling with databases at work, got me thinking I should do some sort of DBA qualification to cover my employment options after I graduate with the Biomed degree. I could do a Diploma from Open Polytechnic which is mostly online, so that could be cool.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Back

After a three month stint in Auckland, I'm finally back in Wellington, where it's windy, mosquito free, and you can wear a jersey any day of the year (at least in my room), gotta love them winter clothes.

Working at HortResearch was an interesting learning experience. I picked up a few new lab skills that I'm hoping to put to good use in the future, but also learned a few things about people and stuff (TM).

Good to be back, all in all. Uni is starting tomorrow. Final year, scary. Picked up a law paper this year, will see how it goes - haven't done a humanity paper before (well, except German, but that hardly counts).

Still playing WoW - great to have an addiction to fall back on if anything goes haywire in RL, tbh.

Still living in Karori, but might have to look for a smaller place at some point - Telecom isn't promising any bigger internet caps, and it's hard to have 10Gb between five people, especially when one uses up 8Gb a month (grr @ flatmates).

Piggy is still alive and rather well. I've got him eating vegetables now, he's especially fond of basil and broccoli, not so keen on any fruit though. I'll probably be getting him a friend fairly shortly so he doesn't get so bored hanging out by himself.

Went out to Strawberry Fare last night, the service is shit is usual, but the desserts haven't disappointed. Thinking of going to Il Casino at some point, it's always looked flash from the outside, and what else is student loan good for.