Acting Up

My musings, thoughts, rants, and discoveries. - Scott Maddock

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Location: Redmond, Washington, U.S. Inc. (Formerly U.S.A.)

Back to Blogging

I haven't blogged here since 2012. Why am I making a stab at it again?

I realized two things about social media I wanted to get away from. First was that I was often using it as a journal, which is boring and maybe TMI for those platforms. Secondly I was using it too much for my taste, so that I felt like a tool for marketers rather than using social media as a tool for my ends.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

From Here To There
Circling the Circles

We had an offsite meeting on Thursday. It was a meeting with the VP we report to, exploring how we can improve systems proactively. The nice thing I noticed before the meeting was over is I now feel I can approach him. I did not have that feeling before, not since our executive re-org. A very positive outcome in my mind.

There was another surprising positive personal outcome. I'm on good terms with all my manager's peers and consider all of them casual friends or friendly acquaintances as I do my peers. One of them, my officemate's manager was in chatting the next morning and complimented me on several of my ideas and suggestions. That was very nice, as was the response to the topics when I brought them up, which generated discussions of how to implement and build on the ideas, and a number of action items.

Later my manager gave me the same feedback. They both said how it was nice how I thought outside the box (I didn't know that term was still in vogue). My manager had been asked by her boss why she asked me to come as I don't have the breadth of experience of the more senior developers asked to come, and she told him it was because I tend to come up with innovative ideas like that. I'm glad I lived up to her assertion. She's retiring, and of all my great managers at Expedia she has been the best for helping me advance. She also told me my contributions were noticed and appreciated. It is great to have someone who gives you opportunities and positive feedback.

Anyway, I'm sitting here for release night, and happily it is dead quiet. A very smooth evolution. I signed up for an on-call status but came into the office anyway. Some script transcription for my current acting project and db work I wanted to do. Instead I ended up talking with my officemate who came in for his shift tool. For four and a half hours. Wonderful. We talked of and around spiritual, political, cultural, and miscellaneous topics. I'll miss him when we have our next office move, and I'm not sure having my own office will be worth the price. He described an Indian movie I need to remember to ask the name of. About an underworld man who finds himself reading all about Gandhi, then seeing and talking to him as he makes decisions. That was brought up by my explaining a bit about Harvey which I am thinking of incorporating into one of my script projects.

Friends are where you find them.

I've been thinking, always a risky endeavor, about my friendships. I've a lot of close friendships, but lately due to a number of circumstances my existing (or old?) family and social relationships seem to be dissolving. I'm not worried about being a reclusive person again, but it is a bit scary. I know life moves forward, it is something I also love. Ah, my beloved paradoxes.

In most of my friendships I'm usually the one who calls or invites. I was thinking maybe I should stop for a while, and wait to hear from them. The old low self esteem model, which contains a little petulance at some level, you know, kind of testing your friend's fealty. Then, there is the flip side. Don't want to be a needy nudge. I believe I'm well past that. Still the perception bothers me because of very old behaviors. It ends up being a bit of a gradual thing, I still fall out of touch with people depending on responses (or lack thereof) and how hard it is to connect.

As I'm back to seriously considering moving in the next few years I realize I may be establishing another social circle before long. Family doesn't hold me here any longer. There are sadnesses and joys related to that. I'm still close to my sister, but we've not been geographically close since we both lived at home in the 70's. Whether I am a few hours or a day's travel wouldn't make much difference. My brother's kids are great, but I am not an integral part of their lives. I make a point of inviting them on outings I think they'd enjoy, but they're teenagers, and I most certainly am not. The get all excited sounding whenever I invite them, and except for very rare occasions, cancel or don't show. I find it troubling but only because it exactly mimics their father's behavior. I know they like their Uncle Scott, but they have healthy friendships and support systems. You can believe me or not, but I find that heartening. My mom, when people ask me if she is living I answer, "I think so." Not much holding me there. My Dad and stepmom, two of my best friends are not in the area very much, so that is not really much of a consideration. I expect I'll still have phone service.

Theatre holds me. But that is available in many, and probably most if not all places I'd like to go or return to. My social circle holds me, but about half of them are in theatre and like me tend towards transience. I have a large and satisfying social circle through work too. Everything from close friends going back to my first contracts at Microsoft in the 90's, to current acquaintances at work. That circle and the fun I'm having at Expedia hold me. Still, many of the long term relationships started at work are now long distance and just as close.

It's not quite a wash. I've slightly more desire to stay in this area. When I think of my family I want to leave. If that was my only consideration, I'd rent a dumpster on Monday, use all my vacation time, and spend the four or five weeks cleaning out my house and getting it on the market. Then I'd get a teeny apartment, and work to find a position in Expedia needing my skills anywhere in the world but here. It's ironic. I moved back to this area because of my family. Now, I want to run away again.

Here I am back to the office, where I've been writing this. I wonder if my wryly contrary nature has me enjoying things a lot more right now as I again contemplate striking out for new territory.

Love to all my friends. Present, past, future, nearby and electronic. I treasure and laugh with and at all of you, and hope you occasionally laugh at me too. Otherwise, what the Hell am I good for?


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