Haa choo

I’ve been suffering from a cold for almost a week and pretty well stayed hunkered down aside from some grocery shopping.  My hands are so dry from the constant washing.  I am rapidly depleting the 3 boxes of tissue around my condo.  It’ll probably take another week before I’m fully recovered.  I still have Christmas shopping to do and I’ll look for things at my neighbourhood stores.  There’s no way I am driving to shopping malls.

But at least it’s just a simple cold and not some deadly disease or ailment.  I get to live another day.  I just wish I could be more disciplined to live each day as if it was last.

p.s. I sneezed on this entry so you probably picked up some of my cold virus.  You’re welcome.


Reaching Out

There are days when I wish you guys are geographically closer.  It’s tough maintaining friendships over the internet.  Seeing words an arms length away is not the same as seeing someone an arms length away.

I think I’m beginning to sound like some 18 yr old emo kid.

Tough Love

“It’s a good start.”  Then the pen slashed across the hardcopy of my LinkedIn summary.    It wasn’t the feedback I wanted to hear.  But it was probably the feedback I needed to hear.  It’s back to the drawing board.  But it wasn’t all discouraging news.  My counselor took pains to highlight my people skills.  He told me he could see why people feel comfortable talking with me.  He knows how to gently push and nudge us past our comfort zone.  I jotted down more tips including making time for myself.  I tested him by asking how he managed transitioning from one job to another.  But he was smart enough to quickly turn the conversation back towards me.

It still amazes me how my dad managed to keep his sanity while job hunting.  He didn’t have the benefit out outplacement services, LinkedIn, resume writing services…  He was motivated to keep his family together.

I’m motivated to find something that interests me.  I don’t have kids to feed and to put through school.  This entry isn’t ending the way I thought it would.  Maybe the hidden lesson is to be grateful for where I am.

The Artist and His Subject

I stepped into a surprisingly uncrowded subway car and took a seat near the back.  There was a slightly build, young Asian guy (Filipino I think) sitting diagonally across from me to my right.  He was facing the front of the train while I sat almost 90 degrees to his left looking towards him. He rested his feet up on the seat in front of him with a large notebook propped on his raised knees.  He wasn’t writing as I originally had assumed but sketching.  He looked up periodically and then back to his sketchbook. I casually looked to my left and saw his subject.  It was another man, in his late 20’s, perhaps Indian, a few seats down. He looked bored and I wondered if he knew his likeness was being slowly captured a few feet away.

Then I saw the man looking back at the artist while he was sketching. When the artist looked up, I slowly glanced at the subject while pretending to read the posters.  The subject was looking away.  Every time the artist looked down to sketch, the man would glance over at the artist.  When the artist was looking at the man, the man was always looking elsewhere. Their eyes never met during this artistic courtship.

After a few stops, the young artist started to pack things up. He stuffed his sketchbook into a large brown leather bag and walked towards the door.  A few seconds later, the man also walked towards the door and stood beside the artist. Neither acknowledged each other. I guess it was appropriate that they left the train together.

Selfie – ugh, no…

At our job counseling sessions, they advise us to improve our LinkedIn profile by having a picture.  It increases your visibility and more people are likely to click on your profile if you have a picture.  I finally surrendered and decided to put my picture out there.  So I dragged out my broken tripod.  The handle for the centre leg broke off years ago.  I keep it around for “decoration”.  I made a lot of test shots and cringed at the results.  I wanted to do it by the window but I don’t have a good spot.

Eventually I found a spot, set up my flash, figured out how to adjust the focus without a subject, got dressed (just a shirt, tie, blazer) and took a bunch of pictures.  Finally there was one that looked okay.  There are some small shadows behind me from the flash that I couldn’t figure out how to remove.  But for a small LinkedIn picture, I don’t think people will notice.

One thing I noticed is that the pictures that I thought would work out when I checked the camera weren’t that great when I imported them to my laptop.  In the end, it was the picture which was the brightest.  I still don’t like getting my picture taken even by myself.  Selfie – not me.

On another note, thank you for the thoughts, prayers and kind wishes for my sister.  I stayed with her yesterday afternoon and for dinner.  I think it’ll be a couple of more weeks before the meds and her body stabilizes.  One lesson for us is to make sure we have a family doctor.  Her family doctor retired and she never got around to getting one.  A walk in clinic is ok but you still need a family doctor who is familiar with your history and someone you’re comfortable dealing with.  The worst time to look for a new doctor is when you’re sick.




Just Think and Act

It’s tough to see your sibling taken to the emergency ward in an ambulance.  But I was remarkably calm.  I stayed with her until the wee hours of the morning until she was released.  I shooed my brother and his wife home so they could rest.  A week later, I went to the hospital to pick her up again.  Today, I drove her to the walk in clinic to get some meds until she found a family doctor.

You know how I deal with this and stay calm?  I just turn into a robot and take action. It’s easier that way. I don’t have to deal with emotions.

Stay healthy everyone.

Back to Job Hunting

I met with my job counselor this week and we both agreed that my job hunt needed more focus and attention – in particular networking.  I went over my 30 second commercial with him and he recommended adding more hard skills.  There were many other recommendations about my LinkedIn profile, moving to a more active job search through networking rather than looking at job postings etc…

So I started to make a plan on how to tackle all of this.  I woke up late although I got to bed at 10:30 PM.  I actually woke up around 2 AM and didn’t get back to sleep until 4 AM.  I slept through my alarm.  After a healthy breakfast of oatmeal, nuts and berries, I did the dishes and brushed my teeth.  I noticed the bathroom needed to be tidied up.  I wiped the faucets, sink, the shower stall, the mirror, the toilet and, swept the floors and tossed out the old towels.  I decided to mop the bathroom  floor too.

I dragged out the bucket and the mop that spins.  The bathroom looked decent after that.  While it won’t win any awards, people won’t be scared to use it.  I even use those Lysol wipes.  Then I looked at the hardwood floors.  It was getting a bit sticky.  So I spent the next hour just doing a basic mop up.  I’ve found over time the best way to clean my floors is hand wiping it using a micro fibre cloth and hot water.  But I have to get down on my hands and knees to do that. That’s too tiring and I’ll save that for another day when I feel like it.

So I did a quick wipe that and the hardwood floors looked a bit better.  It’s now after 1PM.  I then debated if cleaning was a form of procrastination.  Since I’m a Gemini – the debate raged on forever.  So I decided to blog.

I best get back to my job hunting.

(ed. note:  warning – the author’s next entry is about dish washing.  He has run out of things to write about.)