August 11th, 2004

Dancing Gir


I started working for The Company 8 1/2 years ago, the day the Tampa site opened (an incredible stroke of good timing). It's the only "real" job I've ever had (though technically I've had my job change a few times within The Company), and while I've at times been less-than-thrilled with certain aspects and been forced to make some very unpleasant personal sacrifices all in all it's a good gig. It's close to home, the amenities are very good, the pay is fair, and most of the people are a joy to work with.

I've always kinda viewed it as a microcosm of the world as a whole. I'm terrified of the idea of being unemployed and searching for a job (haven't got a clue as to how to actually do that!), and I know that part of my mind has always equated leaving the company with death.

As someone who wants to live forever I've always taken a Lazarus Long perspective with regards to my job. Most problems, and even "problem people", are temporary, and if one sticks with it then one can simply outlast them. That approach has worked pretty well, and now there are only a tiny handful of people at the site who have been there longer than I.

However, now my microcosm world is being hit by a fraggin' comet. The credit card business is pulling out of Tampa, and 1100 of the 1400 people will be gone by the end of first quarter 2005. I'm currently slated to be one of them.

The survivors of this mass extinction will be the Auto Finance group. I was on temporary assignment to Auto Finance for 9 months last year and absolutely loved it. It's a much smaller group, and as the sole on-site computer guy I got to be a jack of all trades. It meant that I often worked my ass off, but it also meant that I got to accomplish a lot while working with really cool tech stuff in an environment that was rarely boring. I like "rarely boring". I like it a lot.

So I've been trying to get over there full-time all year, since long before the site closure announcement. Auto Finance is growing, and finally there are now IT openings. femetal and I updated my resume last week (first time in over 8 years!), and my interview is at 9:15 this morning. The final decisions will be made in a week or so. Success means that I get to dodge the comet and continue working where I really want to work. Failure means, well, that I don't.

Either way, there are some interesting changes in store for me. :-) Wish me luck!

Update: All in all I think it went well. The interview was with the hiring manager, with whom I've worked quite a bit and get along very well. There were a couple of things that I'd wanted to be sure to mention that completely slipped my mind during the actual interview. I don't know if it's a breach of interview etiquette or not, but I sent him a followup e-mail message that included them. There'll be a technical interview (probably by phone) within the next few days, and I may find out the results as early as Monday, or the end of next week at the latest.
  • Current Music
    Shamen, "Move Any Mountain"
Dancing Gir

Quick tech question for everyone

I'm gonna borrow a page from ladytabitha  here for a moment. Does anyone out there know of a utility that'll allow me to open a document that was created using MSWorks (.wps)? It's a resume for someone here, and neither Word 2002, OpenOffice1.1.0, nor Word X for Mac seem to be able to open it correctly. I've tried downloading and installing the Office 2003 Resource kit to see if the filters included will help, but to no avail. Word 2k2 has the ability to open Works 2000 documents, but it appears that this was created using an older version.

The Mac version is doing a passable job of giving me mostly-clean text, but I'd like to be able to recover the formatting if possible. You're all smart people- any thoughts?