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My Little Red Book by YFA

My REd Red Thesis

Doesn’t the title of this post sound like the title of a Scrubs episode? If my degree was featured on a Scrubs episode, this is what I would say in a “J. D. voiceover”…

As I sat in convocation hall reflecting how a stage in my life has come to an end, it was the exact same feeling I felt when I convocated a year ago for my bachelor’s degree – feeling a great sense of accomplishment, not necessarily regretting what I have done but if I had to choose again today I probably wouldn’t have done the same thing. And what’s more, I look around and wondered how my life crossed path with some of these people, and whether they will ever cross again. I see my classmate, who is currently working at MS, but came back for his g/f’s convocation (the g/f is going to work for MS too) – probably someone I’ll be socializing with a lot more than I had when we were in the same class; and I see a girl in SyDe whom I worked closely with for a year as directors of the badminton club – someone whom I worked with and trusted but may never meet again. How relationships change… such are the mysteries of life. And I think about how OUR relationships will change – how I’ll be missing all the action, all the new toys we buy, all the funny and happy things we experience, and the struggles we go through…

On a lighter note, here’s an odd thing that happened during convocation… I ended up getting hooded by Mike Lazaradis (co-founder of RIM, chancellor of loo) again… last year he asked me, “So what are your future plans?” and I said, “I’ll be staying here to finish my Masters”, and he replied, “Good choice, good for you.” This year he asked me the same question… and I said, “I’ll be going to work for Microsoft.” and he said, “Why would you want to do that?” and I had nothing to say 😐


ungrateful by teewee

Interesting that jon would post about feeling ungrateful about work. Lately, i’ve been finding myself to be quite ungrateful, not so happy with work I guess. Insurance (as i was telling Grace), is not a very happy thing, nobody likes insurance, nobody likes paying for insurance so I get the blunt end of everything, a conversation can start off with the client being all cheerful but the minute you tell them their brand new vehicle is costing them more insurance prem, they go all sour and yell. The reality of it is, insurance rates are filed with FSCO (the governing body) so nobody can change the rates even if you complained, but i suppose (like everybody in life), we all want to be heard, and these people probably want to be heard, knowing full well that i cannot do anything about their rates.

Bearing this in mind, work becomes somewhat a drag, this year more so because no Gtalk and people aren’t as fast in responding to emails. And this year, I do property insurance and the company is trying to launch this initiative CRM (customer relationship management) [re: organizational behaviour..for those who’ve taken it], so they want us to handle not only auto and property insurance, but handle new insurance policies (traditionally sent to sales department). That way we can build ‘multiple’ relationships with the client and they aren’t transfered so much. Good idea, but for a department that is already stretched thin with the volume of calls, it doesn’t really work that well. The service level (dictated by number of calls waiting, etc) for us is typically 56% while sales stands at 100% for most of the day.

So this year, it’s been a drag every morning going to work, hearing a ton of problems then going home drained and hearing the occasional nag. Last night, I just ranted to Grace about how crappy work is and she told me to think of 10 things that make me happy/grateful about today… I’ve not given it much thought yet, but at first thought, I think it’ll be really hard, in that I really don’t know what I could say I’m happy about..kinda sad? I feel like, I want to purchase this lens, not even sure which one yet, and somehow that would bring “happiness” but as with all toys in life, its only temporary and clearly doesn’t solve the problem. Sure the job is well paid compared to many other students and its comfortable…but still not that satisfied with it.

How can I be more grateful about things?


TSN Turning Point.. by sadd3j

I guess this goes here? So I just had a meeting.. and I just got the heads up on a new project I’m on.. and it’s probably one of the biggest projects I’ve gotten so far.. one of those portfolio building ones.

I actually get to design the student recruitment portal for a university. Time to start working.. hard. It’s always hard to see how “good you have it” when you’re in “it”. If I want to go into design.. I probably couldn’t have a better position than where I am now.. having gotten into this company through web programming.. but now maneuvered myself into the design department and pretty much designing on a consistent basis.. I suppose its the other spam-junk which really weighs me down.

Thinking about it.. makes me feel so ungrateful.. I have my cake and I’m eating it too, getting paid as a programmer (more than a starting design job for sure) and getting to design stuff with fairly minimal programming. Maybe full-time school isn’t such a good idea. It would probably be better to do part time while continuing to work.. a large part of the appeal of full-time school is the fun of it I think.


sadd3j. professional surfer. by sadd3j

So I’m expanding my surfing outside of the typical half a dozen bookmarks that I’ve got on my work computer.. It’s like I’m unable to add more bookmarks or something. Anyhow, for the most part I don’t like reading blogs and the sites of these really talented musicians, photographers etc. because a little part of me is jealous and a bigger part of me makes me realize where I am and that my life in comparison feels like a waste.

Anyhow, I’ve come across a few cool sites/blogs. I’ll just recount how I surfed.. Yesterday I found a wedding photography forum and it housed one thread entitled something like “Help! shooting friend’s wedding with 350+kit lens!” and inside one of the seasoned wedding photogs linked to this quite informative blog with 6 posts, or “lessons” on How to shoot a wedding.

Today I revisted it and then found my way to the “Proffesional Photographers” xanga webring and stumbled across this 30 year old asian american photographer, genoVa who is really talented, shoots some amazing shots.. and has this van with crazy cinema displays and a mobile photo studio in it.

Anyhow.. after sighing over that, I went on to another young asian wedding photographer (Xanga, no big surprise that he’s asian). It turns out he studied engineering for four years, worked at some biochem firm but is now pursuing his dream of wedding photography.. being mentored by some established wedding photographer. Anyway, while still a talented guy, the most interesting thing about him is that he’s Christian and he posts about facing the dillema of sitting at a desk and was surrounded by his also newly-graduated friends who “couldn’t wait to go back to school” and older adults who point out that “well that’s life.. get used to it”.

Anyway.. in one of his posts he links to this Washington post article about an experiment they tried, putting one of the best violinists in the world, in the subway, playing some amazing music on his $3.5 million violin. It’s a long article, but a pretty good read.

And again I’m just a little depressed about where I am. Oh Steve, am I settling?


wake up. by teewee

in writing a response to yfa’s post regarding seattle and the work and effort, i decided maybe i’ll kill a bit more time by posting something short, time: 9:57am friday, if i stay till 2:30pm, then i’ll have been at stauffer library for >24hrs, if i stay till 8:30pm and don’t go out, i’ll have been inside stauffer library for over 24hrs without stepping foot outside at all, which i doubt i’ll do because i need some coffee.

anyways, in response to yfa, yeah, stress about where to go in life, i sometimes look and see how you’ve got everything ‘set’ and/or ‘planned’ and sometimes i wish i had that too, but perhaps its because my marks are crap (but i dont like to believe its marks that hold me back….because i think if you are good at something you’d be able to excel in it in the work place), or maybe its because its biochemistry, something i REALLY don’t care about, its pretty unanimous, the overall consensus is ‘why are you in biochemistry?’, and i still have no answer to that question, and seeing lincoln study all night for some biochem400course as i slept the few hours on the couch, his one message for me was ‘get out of biochemistry while you still can’, how encouraging.

i’m not sure, i’m not sure about anything, there’s never any guarantees in life, no guarantee’s in people, school, work. when things seem to go okay for a while, something else hits, what i DO know is that HE has some sort of plan, which i think is quite comforting,

sidestory: talking to sam a few weeks ago, we got talking about how neither of us know the frosh (her at utccf) and me at kccf (although last few days i’ve gotten to know a few, theres a guy from HK who uses a MBP so as my break i went and showed him a few cool programs), but yeah, sam was saying how many of the frosh are overly keen about school etc, and i was saying, last year i told the frosh (whenever they’d be stressing crazy), “(insert name), is the God you serve not bigger than these exams? these marks? these double digit numbers that *somehow* is a ‘fair’ assessment of your knowledge?” and sam’s response was, ‘well i don’t want them to cry’ and i was thinking, but why would you cry? isn’t that so comforting? to know you have hope in something else?

i guess it’s all perspective, and faith. from a TPview, watching others stress and telling them not to stress is easy, but from the firstperson’s view, they just gotta build up faith. and how can you build faith?, by being continually tested. look at the men of faith in the Bible, how many times were they tested and failed at times. its cool to see them and be like ‘wow i wish i were ______’, but also crazier to remember that they went through so many trials.

in short, this post really is a collection of random thoughts, perhaps some editing would be nice, but no time for that!