Tag Archives: holidays

Work, Part II

Unlike last year, I’m working through this year’s Christmas/New Year period. Mostly because I don’t mind working through what is one of the most chill (work atmosphere-wise, not temperature wise now that we’re in the middle of a hot and sweltering Queensland summer) periods of the year, but also because I really have nothing better to do, and no one to spend the time off with.

Anyway, I’ve been working full time for about four and a half years now. It’s not that long, when you think about it, but at the same time it’s also the longest period that I’ve ever worked full time, outside of a few weeks during school holidays and whenever I wasn’t too busy with university. And for the most part, it’s pretty great. Sure, work occupies most of my time, but it also gives me some degree of freedom, a degree of being truly independent that’s hard to put into words. On some level, there’s a part of me that enjoys the routine. Working full time has brought a certain degree of structure to what was previously a very haphazard arrangement of the things and events that made up my life.

But there’s a couple of things about corporate culture that I don’t really understand. For starters, what’s the deal with the unwritten law which says otherwise normal people who work full time have to hate weekdays and express this constantly to their colleagues? Everyone’s all “yay, hump day” and “finally, Friday” all the time, and I’m like, OK? Or maybe “yeah, haha”. I get that having a break from work is important, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with looking forward to the weekend. But can’t you be enthusiastic about being at work and doing cool, interesting, meaningful stuff? Unemployment is hardly what it’s cracked up to be, especially when you have kids to feed, a house to pay off, and whatever other adult commitments/drug addictions you have. Hey, I don’t judge.

It’s as if all of these people who look forward to the weekend want time to go faster or something. As if they’re in some kind of a hurry to experience the weekend, their next big holiday, or whatever else they have to look forward to that isn’t work, instead of living in the here and now. On some level, I can see where they’re coming from. If I had some big holiday planned, or time off with my significant other, I probably wouldn’t want to be at work either. But here’s the thing: I don’t think looking forward to the weekend and wanting a few extra hours in the day so you can finish just one more thing at work are mutually exclusive. It’s entirely within the realms of possibility to enjoy what you do at work, put that little bit of extra effort in, and still be able to relax and enjoy your weekend/holiday/time off.

So, every time someone laments at how the week is going slowly, or how they wish it was Friday, I smile and nod. I don’t always agree with then, but then again, I haven’t been working full time for nearly as long as they have. Maybe in a few years I’ll be in their position, wishing time would pass faster so I could be doing what I really want to do. I doubt it, given that I already feel as though time is already passing fast enough, most of the time, but I digress — that’s for another time.

Like everyone else, I’d love to not work and get paid for it. But unless I somehow get extremely lucky, the realist in me says I’ll probably have to work until I’m old or dead, one of the two. Just like everyone else, really. And if I’m working, I might as well try and make something of it, right? I might as well try my hardest and put a little effort into what I’m doing, because what’s the downside here? It seems unlikely that I’ll get fired for trying my hardest, because that’s not really how capitalism works. Or so I’m led to believe, anyway.

Continue Reading →


I’m taking this holiday season off work. Normally, I wouldn’t have any issues with working through the Christmas and New Year periods. They’re my favourite time of the year for working, mostly because everything is super chill, and because there are a lot of other people who are also taking the time off work, you can usually get some personal projects completed that you wouldn’t otherwise fit into your regular day, or put a little extra care into getting something done right.

Work is interesting like that. Even though I have far too much annual leave banked up and zero other commitments, there’s a small part of me that would still like to be working over the break. I know a few other people that use the holiday period to zero their outstanding annual leave balance for the year, taking whatever leave they have remaining after the year is done and dusted to rest, relax and recharge, allowing them to come back and start the new year with a renewed vigour and zeal for whatever lies ahead.

It’s not that I’m a work-a-holic or anything, either. I feel like have an excellent work-life balance otherwise. I rarely stay past the prescribed hour, and use my full lunch breaks as a way to get away from work for a bit. My only flaw is that I perhaps check work email a couple more times than strictly necessary over the weekend, but even that only adds up to a minute or two of distraction over the course of a normal weekend.

No, I want to work during the holiday season because it’s the coolest period of the year (attitude-wise, not temperature). Sure, you might be stuck in the office with the rest of the poor folks who drew the short straw. Or perhaps they, like yourself, volunteered to keep the lights on, and have now been charged with making sure that nothing breaks too badly while everyone else is drinking their eggnog, watching the cricket, or spending some quality time with their friends and family.

But because there are a lot of other people away from work, the usual pressures from the business dissipate, and all you’re left with is whatever your manager has decided they want you to work on over the break. If you get that done to their satisfaction, then the rest of your time at work is yours, free for you to finally work out how that esoteric system works, improve that thing that you’ve wanted to touch all year, fix that problem that needed more investigative time than your usual day would allow, or automate some process that probably should have been automated years ago.

I mean, what else am I going to do with my time off? There are only so many games of Frostivus you can play before you realise that maybe you’re the reason why your team can’t get past wave 12 of Tinys, and that perhaps Luna isn’t the ideal hero despite having built-in wave-clear, an aura that buffs your teammates, and scales well enough into late game to be truly formidable. Even though I can string creeps along and kite them all around the map, it’s my fault that my teammates decided to hide in base and get overrun.

So yes, a small part of me wants to be working over the break. Even if a not-insignificant portion of that is because I have basically nothing better to do.

CSI: New York

Alternative title: what I’ve been up to so far this holiday period, part one.

For starters, I’ve been watching *a lot* of CSI: New York. Before any of you start some epic tirade about how it’s crap television and whatever, that’s cool, you’re totally entitled to your opinion. CSI: NY is somewhat of a guilty pleasure, but oh — what a pleasure it is.

Note that I don’t watch it for the crimes that are investigated. I’m not actually sure why I watch it — perhaps it’s a combination of the characters, crimes, and the science — but it makes for some good entertainment most of the time.

I *adore* the little snippets of character development here and there, too. Hawkes (played by Hill Harper) is the brilliant ME-turned-CSI that is impossible not to love, and Danny and Flack (Carmine Giovinazzo and Eddie Cahill, respectively) are both excellent characters who exude charm. It’s really, really good.

The crazy thing about CSI or any other long-running TV show is that it’s not all action, not all glamour, certainly not all of the time. You make your way through more than a few mind-numbingly boring episodes (by comparison), and then — boom! You’re hit with an episode where Danny is suddenly a hostage, and the lab is hit by people who just want their cocaine back. Mac rigs up some explosive which ends up blowing up half the lab, and it just keeps coming.

An episode where one of their own is found dead in a car.

An episode where Hawkes reveals a mistake he made.

An episode where one of their own is shot and killed, in one of the most explosive and action-packed (possibly my favourite) CSI:NY episodes of all time, which screws up Flack for quite a few episodes.

Most of these episodes I’m describing are mostly season episodes, yeah, but that’s just the thing — CSI: New York is good TV.

Malaysia 2009 – Part VIII

Right, getting through these photos is proving to be more of a task than I originally thought. Nevermind, nevermind…

So I spotted these mega chup-chups at at the local Penang airport, just as we were going to leave for KL (and, by extension, home).

Thought they were pretty cool. They’re huge – they could easily fit 20-30 chups chups inside them. I didn’t buy one because they were pretty exxy (roughly AUD $20, I’d say), and because I’d have no where to stick it on the plane…

In any case, this has been brought to you by the song of the day, Lollipop by Mika. Where has this kind of boppy music been my entire life!

Here’s another pic of the awesome mega-chups:

Malaysia 2009 – Part VII

Okay, so there’s a lot more images in that folder than I expected. No worries, it just means more posts for you! Here’s another, entitled “Wait, I’ve seen that somewhere! (Part Two)”.

Nazi or Bhuddist?

Nazi or Bhuddist?

Right – so yet more late-night driving. I think this was after my Gramp’s 80th bday party, but in any case, we had seen this a couple of times before.

Armed with lots of photon-capturing devices (read: cameras, iPhone), we went back to take some good photos.

Now, the question remains: what is it? Sure, it’s a swastika, but it’s not for a Nazi party. Nope – if you read the text at the bottom of the image, it says something along the lines of “Buddhist Church of Sitiawan”.

The design of the swastika is actually pretty cool – it’s made out of lanterns which make for an ominous sight at night-time.

Pretty blatant of them to just stick it out there, though, considering how easily it could be mistaken for a Nazi symbol, and it’s not a small sign either, easily being taller than 2m in height, with a couple more for elevation.

Malaysia 2009 – Part VI

Yes, I’m not quite done yet. On my desktop, there’s a folder with blog-able pics from my trip, and this one’s one of them. There’s a couple more to come, so we might reach Part X if we’re lucky (and if I can be bothered).

In any case, the reason I haven’t been blogging lately is because my internet has been painfully slow. You can read all about it here.

So, lets get into it, yeah? This one’s called I’ve seen that logo before, and goes out to all my mates on MacTalk Forums.

Apple Allied Resources

Apple Allied Resources

We were driving along, going from A to B (as you do in Malaysia), and I was looking out the window, taking in the sights (as you do) when I suddenly spotted a familiar logo…

Of course, I whipped out my iPhone, and snapped a picture as fast as I could. My sister was also snapping a pic of something random (I think it was a school bus), but the Apple logo was just too good a photo oppurtunity to pass up…

Of course, now that I’ve taken the photo, you can go ahead and tell Apple to sue the pants off Allied Resources. Unless they’re actually a part of Apple, of course. But that’s unlikely. :p

Comments below.