I had the worse allergies today. The kind where I’ve sneezed and sniffled so much that it’s given me a headache.
It’s a quarter after 10 p.m. as I start this post. I have a fresh Venti Quad Toffee Nut Latte from Starbucks sitting on my desk to see me through the night. The cup has the old logo on it with the double-tailed mermaid modestly hiding her breasts from view. Did Starbucks cave to the small uproar over the new logo, which shows some nipplage? Did they switch back to the old logo? Someone is starving on the streets of New York and these are the issues that weigh heavy on my mind. Oh well. That’s just the way I roll.
To switch gears, my Internet company — the people that provide my Internet connection — is the pits. I’m not sure what kind of unholy bargain was struck, but the management company that runs my apartment complex decided that letting their tenants have choice was a bad idea. Instead, we’re all forced to go through one company. Now I’m sure that most of the people who work for this Internet provider are good, hard-working people with families and friends that love them. So don’t let the following criticisms of the company confuse you into thinking that I think everything about the company sucks, because I don’t think that. The company just sucks in very important ways.
Service Hours: For some ungodly reason, their business model excludes installers and techs working on weekends. So if you work a 9 to 5 job Monday through Friday, you’re kind of in a tough spot. To make up for this, they tell you that since they have a relationship with your community, the managers will just let them into your unit so they can set up your connection. Right. Like I want some dude just walking around my apartment, rifling through my unmentionables. It’s one thing to agree to let the maintenance guys in there unsupervised, but these fellas are on the property all the time. I know them by name. I talk to them. There’s familiarity. If something is amiss when I get home after they’ve done some work, I know who to confront. I can’t say the same for the once-in-a-while Internet dude that breezes through. So the long and short of it is that I have to take the day off whenever technical work has to be done.
Shared Connection: Remember those ads DSL providers put out about “bandwidth hogs” that plagued cable Internet? Well, that’s what we have here. Each complex that’s serviced by this particular Internet company has one giant line that each unit taps into, as I understand it, anyway. This would typically not be that big of a deal, provided the girth was big enough to handle each unit’s individual single connection. The problem, however, arises from the fact that the Internet company doesn’t cap upload speeds like other providers. So lets say I’m an unscrupulous kazaa, limewire or torrent user and I’m sharing my mp3 or porn collection through these file sharing programs. And lets say that I get 100 other unscrupulous file sharers downloading from me. Because there is no upload cap, these leechers are downloading at maximum speed, sapping the bandwidth for everyone at the apartment complex. One thoughtless person screws everyone else over.
Abuse Recourse: While I’d like to believe that this company monitors bandwidth usage and can put abusers in check, I don’t think they really do it. I have to call in almost every day and have them scan for abusers to kick so that my connection speeds up. Of course, they don’t have 24-hour customer service, so abusers now just wait until 10 p.m. or so when they know that calls won’t be answered. Many of my late-night blogging has been thwarted by neighbors. It can really slow down to a crawl, sometimes to the point where I’ve resorted to tethering my pocket PC phone to my computer and using the 3G data connection as my Internet just to get a few things done.
It’s enough to make me want to move, which sucks because I have a real sweet deal here, otherwise.
Switching to another gear, seems like Working Author is garnering some attention abroad. Italian writer Claudio Romeo liked my Notebook article (like so many other people do) that he decided to incorporate it into his article about…well, I’m actually not quite sure, because it’s in Italian and Google’s translator didn’t help me out much. Claudio also apparently thought I was a woman, which I’m told has been corrected. I wonder how “taking her to the boneyard” goes over in Italian. Here’s the link to the article.
One last note here before I turn in, or try to turn in with four shots of espresso coursing through my veins: When I was driving out for The Zodiac Show I got to thinking about all of the opportunities that Buzzine would open up for me. In time, with just a single phone call, I could be interviewing A-listers. The idea of it made me nervous in the way that I get nervous going to job interviews where I don’t meet all of the qualifications. I hate those situations, because I’m constantly second guessing myself and I start to ramble. I tried to comfort myself with cynicism, telling myself that these A-listers — the actors, anyway — only got to where they are because of the way they look and that I shouldn’t worry about their judgments, because I was intellectually superior. Then I decided that that was an arrogant way of approaching things and what I wanted to exude was confidence. Moreover, there were actors that I truly respected for the ability and not their looks. Surely, I wanted their respect for me as a journalist. So it all came down to a gut check: If I really thought I was of the same caliber as those I respect, then there was nothing to be nervous about. From that moment, my resolve was galvanized.
But should I ever have a lapse in my confidence, I think I can fake it.