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Daniel Sifrit

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Dragoncon [Sep. 6th, 2008|11:55 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
[music |Ego Likeness -- Burn Witch burn]

Had a lot of fun in Hotlanta. Dragoncon was its usual chaotic self. Somehow I didn't remember HOW many costumes were in play. They have added a much enhanced live music track compared to the past. Ended up catching about 4 different bands, including the new lineup from Cruxshadows. My reaction is sorta.... "eh" (to quote a certain Canadian)

Too much of their performance is backtracked. One of the two violinists spent more time dancing than playing. (which tells me that the two haven't got their timing down yet) With the layered synth tracks they are backtracking one and playing the other. (plus they have no bass or drummer so ALL of the low end is pre-recorded) Still nice music, and the vox are certainly live...

Ego Likeness and Helblinki were cool as well. I guess I will replace Lunacon with Dragoncon next year. (sigh) I still don't know where I am going to be next year.


Shared a room this year in the Hilton, hopefully next year will be a little more organized. My roomate Sarah was a nice lady, but I hate sleeping on the floor... :p
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(no subject) [Aug. 1st, 2008|07:05 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
[Current Location |Richmond, VA]
[mood |lazylazy]
[music |Tara MacLean - "Got a Light"]

The boring middle of the contract is still going strong.

Decided to do Dragoncon in Atlanta this year, though its going to be a bit more expensive because I waited so long to decide. At least the flight is cheap. (and isn't THAT odd to say with a straight face these days) If I can find a room, anyhow.

Found a dent at the top of the liftgate on my rover-- probably from backing too far back in the parking garage. Likely stuck with it since it looks like its part of the rear structure protecting the rear seats in a roll and not easy to repeair. Will have to have it retouched though, since the paint was damaged at the bend.

All three of my regular friends that do the same job as I do have been moved to Dallas by Ericsson. I have the suspicion I may be headed back there at the end of the contract here in November. (you never know though) No per diem, but no hotel bills. Probably a wash with the IRS collecting what I would spend at a hotel...
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Merry Morning, Mr Pine [Apr. 22nd, 2008|01:38 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
[Current Location |Richmond VA]
[mood |cheerfulcheerful]
[music |The Crruxshadows - Citadel]

Went to see Eisley last night, and the title is a lyric from one of their more "out there" tunes. I was actually more excited to see Vedera than Eisley since I have seen a lot of Eisley over the years -- they are from my area of East Texas and started up playing a lot on Dallas when I lived there.

Apparently DC has a no smoking ordinance since the only thing polluting the air in there was the fog machine they had going full time in the light rack. Can't say I mind, and I suspect the band didn't mind either. (beats a few shows at Trees in Dallas where it wasn't all tobacco that was fuming up the place) Heh, Virginia has as many cigars in some bars as cigarettes -- makes for coming home and taking a shower before bed, it does. Can't imagine how bad it would be if I had long hair... ick.

Lights drove me crazy though, the club seemed to think backlights were the way to go, the front lights were an odd mix of gel cans. (simple lights with a coloured film across the front) Magenta and Yellow, but no Cyan to balance it. (the three together make a diffused white light) I am sure the bands are happier with the lighting behind them, but I prefer to see who is playing better. I would almost suspect its to defeat photographers -- the permanent signage at the entrance about cameras was ignored, which makes sense since Eisley has never had a problem with cameras at all. I don't usually do comments on lighting but it bugged me - I hung lights a few times in college.

Reminds me of a show I left in Dallas because some security goon grabbed me when I pulled out my phone to see what time it was. Just annoyed the #$%# out of me, since I wasn't holding it up to take pictures or anything. Japanese labels have a real thing against people taking pictures of their acts performance - since they sell autographs. Seems to me that they ought to wait until someone does before laying hands on them. It was a convention "free" show so I just left.

Hopefully Vedera will do another tour sometime where they can do a full set. The Envy Corps wasn't bad either. I have seriously missed decent live music -- not enough to drive regularly 2 hours into DC though.
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The blahs [Apr. 16th, 2008|02:59 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
[Current Location |Richmond VA]
[mood |boredbored]

Entering that boring middle of an O&M project... the techs pretty much have a good handle on the support requirements and no longer need much hand-holding. There is always that possibility that something really tricky can come up, but mostly its pretty boring. Not early enough to start looking for a new project for when yours ends, either.

Probably time to take a vacation, which somehow seems a bit off since I am not exactly working hard NOW. Change of scenery more than anything I guess. Richmond is definitely a distinguished old town - but its also pretty darn boring for live music and anything but a straight "House" dance scene.
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Just a bit of catchup [Mar. 8th, 2008|01:16 am]
Daniel Sifrit
[Current Location |Richmond VA]
[music |Imogene Heap -- Glittering Cloud]

Well, ended up getting an offer I couldn't refuse - so to speak.

I ended up getting a direct contract in Richmond Virginia for a year starting last November. With a slight detour down to Miami and the keys for 2 weeks of support. Have been in Virginia a bit over 3 months now. Rented an empty apartment downtown and bought a few basic furniture items and moved in. (bought a not-so-basic HD Plasma TV, which doubles as a display monitor for the PC, too)

Sold my Jetta to a fellow in WA, and bought a Land Rover to replace it - needed more space and the offroad capability. Honestly needed it back when I left Boston in 2006. Both Nashville and Little Rock had some challenging cell site roads. Virginia isn't that bad, so far.
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Mexico [Oct. 3rd, 2007|12:42 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
[Current Location |Memphis]
[mood |crazycrazy]
[music |Nightwish -Dark Passion Play]

Sounds like I may end up in Mexico City doing RBS integrations. We will see if they come through with an offer. Then I have to figure out what to import and work on the paperwork and legal issues as well as finally set up mailbox instead of the current "whenever I get to Dallas" method thats in place now.
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Contract Blues [Sep. 26th, 2007|04:15 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
Its always a bit exciting towards the end of a contract. Rumours abound about new work, everyone starts calling you -- recruiters from resume postings and other friends who are also ending soon. Add to the mess that the customer (that would be AT&T) is considering another contract after this one. We were stop-lossed this week while they figure it all out.

I actually prefer clean endings to the drag-on. Makes it hard to know if you can take a new job if offered when you are in this type of limbo. Then all they have to do is say "no thanks" in a few weeks and we get dropped with no warning. Last week I could job hunt with a firm available date, now its a bit trickier. (since I am Ericsson specialized it behooves me to play nice when directly contracted-- on turnkey projects its not a big deal)

---

Just sent my passport off to be renewed, feel sorta nekkid without it. (it went expedited and overnight) Friend on contract in the Carribean invited me down to the DR, but may have to miss that. Its hard to plan vacations (was thinking about Belgium as well) around the current work fluctuations anyhow.

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Just added a microamp to my PC audio system, the Corda Move (http://www.meier-audio.homepage.t-online.de/) and it makes a very noticable listening difference.
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Death [May. 14th, 2007|12:11 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
Been a while since I posted, but things have been a bit chaotic lately.

My father has been ill for some time, and finally passed away Sunday about 3 hours after I left the hospital to come back to Memphis to work. I have to head back in a few days to attend the funeral and legal issues.

They had predicted he wouldn't live more than a week or two but since he wasn't comfortable with some of the breathing machines they didn' force him to use them and so he lasted days instead. Personally I suspect the last sedative shot they gave him before I left was intentionally a bit strong and he never woke up. I certainly wasn't surprised to get a call a few hours later anyway.

So now I am as close as I get to survivors guilt, even knowing darn well its not justified. My father and I were not that "close" as many would term it. I visited regularly and talked on the phone with them at about the same interval. He was 80 with a bad heart/lung issue and his kidneys were failing, so it truly WAS a blessing -- he hasn't been able to breath well for months. (we won't go into my irritation with their General Practitioner (MD) who didn't tell my parents that dad was terminal a month ago and left it for the cardiologist to do 3 days before he died)
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Running in Place [Feb. 13th, 2007|04:54 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
Took a vacation last month to Mexico City to attend a friends wedding. Had a lot of fun, and his family was very friendly and made sure the gringo didn't get in any trouble. Only the bride and groom and the grooms father spoke English fluently, alas. (and I don't speak Spanish)

Anyway, good times were had and much alcohol was drunk, and the knot was tied. :) Angel's wife is joining him this week and they are going to come over from Nashville and we are going to visit Graceland. (note: on my own I would have finished this year in Memphis and never visited )

Had a bit of an issue with my company over the time away from work and in the end didn't get paid for it as I had expected. It was a misunderstanding but the company made a much bigger issue out of it than was needed, not sure I plan to stay with them after this contract after that. We will see, have until October to get it sorted.

Painted part of my living area (room isn't the right term) a dark blue since I went back to Dallas for the weekend. Still going to need another coat though, have to get it next trip. At least the primer coat only needed 2 hours to dry. Thinking quite seriously about taking my 8 foot dividing wall out, which is a good idea for the space but it makes no sense spending that much (would end up re-flooring it too) when I only spend the random weekend here and there in the space. Paint is cheap, I can justify THAT part.

--
Taxes were good to me this year thanks to my contract in Boston and its high per-diem rate. Now I just have to keep an actual driving log this year....
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A lot more nothing [Jan. 3rd, 2007|06:54 pm]
Daniel Sifrit
[mood |boredbored]

The last few months have just blended together. I have regressed back to a Vampire, and haven't been going out much.


O&M contracts are steady but boring work. Its nice to be working, but the cabinets I maintain just don't fail much. I did go home for a few days at Christmas, but other than that I am mainly being an "apartment rat" in Memphis and playing games at night.

There is a nice Irish-style pub a block away that has a decent menu of food, as well as decent beer though.

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