Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Timing is Everything

So now that I’m unemployed… oh yeah, the rest of this story informs that statement.

It all started with the Browns in Pittsburgh this weekend. Everybody expected a blowout for the Steelers but when the Browns went up 21 to 9 in the first half the football world was shocked.

The second half was another story, though. Pittsburgh changed up their gameplan and aside from some spectacular special teams returns by Cleveland’s Josh Cribbs the Steelers made a comeback to win 28 to 31.

Now I have a pretty healthy rivalry with most of my now former coworkers, the majority of whom are huge Browns fans. So I sent a text message to Bryce, the biggest of the Browns fans, saying, “I’m fired aren’t I?”

It happens that my previous week at work I was struggling to find things to do. Nothing was really coming in, though on Monday in the first five minutes I was bombarded from several angles on things that needed priority or more immediate attention.

But it was at around four o’clock Bryce asked me to meet him in the conference room. “This has nothing to do with the Steelers and the browns,” he said.

What happened next was an explanation for why I haven’t been busy the previous week. In his words, “I blame the sales team”. You see this company has two products. First there is the courseware, flash-based corporate training on various topics; and Learning Management Systems, the hosted website that houses the courseware and maintains records for the client.

The sales process has required my involvement recently. Instead of just selling the product based on its merit, I would get a requirement document for a client with a basic outline of what was to go into this “Demo” site and I would then build it for each potential client. Thus I am now spending my work time building products that are not generating revenue.

Last week when even the requests for demos went cold I was a little bored at work.
So after waking up from a mid afternoon nap at about 2:00 today I started looking for jobs. In about 2 hours I had updated my resume and gotten 3 interviews set up with recruiters. I figured that was enough productivity for one day for a guy who’s unemployed.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Shouldn’t it be called Blue Week?

This week NBC attempted to further the propaganda of environmentalism with a “Green theme” in all their prime time shows. Of course since the earth is actually blue when seen from space I think the whole green theme misses the point of the Earth’s natural state, but I digress.

All week, starting with Sunday Night Football, NBC’s shows have gone extra preachy with their environmental message.

Sunday Night Football kicked off (sorry for the pun) the green message by turning out the lights in the studio. This was mostly a symbolic act since the rest of the year the studio will be very well lit. I think most football fans would agree that they only care about the green status of the game when the Jets play the Packers.

To be honest after watching this week’s episode of Heroes I didn’t catch an overly preachy environmental message. But then again as NBC’s highest rated serial drama throwing in a green sub-plot be more out of place than that replacement green peacock that’s been in the lower corner of the screen all week.

Thursday night tried to present the “You’re bad for being affluent” message with humor. Though the script writers got their own commentary on the network edict in which was funnier than the rest of the shows.

On “My Name is Earl” The warden (Craig T. Nelson) of the jail in which Earl (Jason Lee) is serving time is enacting a scared strait program and wanted Earl to do the presentation in the school. He then added “Add a green message,” to which Earl replies “That doesn’t fit with the rest of the presentation, wouldn’t it just seem kind of tacked on?”
Which it was.

Later Steven Carell did his best impersonation of “Survivor Man.” The show ended with him giving a speech, meant to support the environmental cause. As is status quo with this show Carell’s character gets everything wrong, but things work out in spite of his bumbling. His Environmental speech actually made sense.

“Man became civilized for a reason. He decided he wanted to have warmth and clothing and television and hamburgers and to walk upright and to have a soft futon at the end of the day. He didn’t want to have to struggle to survive. I don’t need the woods, I have a nice wood desk. I don’t need fresh air because I have the freshest air around: AC.”

Later Scrubs featured this exchange: Janitor: That’s very wasteful, must you wash your hands so often?
Carla: I just changed an eighty-year-old man’s diaper and I’m about to eat a muffin. So if you don’t mind I’m going to wash away.

This proves that conserving water helps in the spread of hepatitis.

NBC spent the week perpetuating falsehoods about mans ability to affect change in our constantly fluctuating Earth. There have been ice ages and periods of warming, none of them were caused by saving water or driving a gas guzzling SUV.

Environmentalism has become as much a religion as is practiced at your neighborhood church. It involved belief in something that has never been proven (faith). A set of guidelines for living (commandments), consequences for disobeying them (sin) and a way to make up for it (redemption through carbon credits).

The biggest difference, though, is that NBC would never put together a series of programs called “Jesus Week.”

Friday, November 02, 2007

Scab Writer to the Rescue

With a writers strike in Hollywood eminent many of our favorite TV shows may not be available. In an effort to limit the number of reality shows on television and keep quality programming available as a vehicle for Erectile Dysfunction ads I am offering the networks (and maybe Cable if the money is right) the following list of TV shows I’m willing to scab write for the sake of keeping television interesting:

Down Town Grounds
Set in a trendy coffee house the manager Mark Linn-Baker (Perfect Strangers) must fight off caffeine addicted homeless people, sometimes with a shot gun.

The Ass Kicking Action Hour
Mr. T, Chuck Norris and David Hasslehoff are a team of superhero crime fighters who travel the world kicking ass.

The Sweeps
Basically a rip off of Grey's Anatomy where there are a lot of good looking people with lots of personal drama, but instead of being doctors they’re Chimney Sweeps.

I’m a Schizophrenic and So am I
Dana Carvey returns to television as a lawyer with multiple personality disorder, often taking different sides of the same case.
Also staring Chritina Applegate as Nurse Pinkthong.

Can mascots from different teams live together? We find out in this wacky sitcom where Pittsburgh’s Pirate Parrot, the San Diego Chicken and The Philly Fanatic all move in together. Also featuring Wayne Brady and Nikki Cox as wacky neighbors.

Lunch at Tiffany’s
Based on the classic film “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” Jessica Alba stars as Holly Golightly, a New Yorker living a carefree lifestyle running information for the mafia. Can she balance her high society lifestyle with her commitments to the mob?

Dysfunctional Family Sitcom Featuring a Fat Guy with a Hot Wife
Based on the comedy of comedian (insert comedian name here) this family looks normal on the surface only to realize that they actually bicker constantly.
Also staring Tara Reid as the hot wife that would never bee seen with a guy like that in real life.