I had some dreams ... they were klowns in my koffee.

(With apologies to Carly Simon)

This is my journey through job transition from a toxic environment to a better life. Join me for a few thoughts and a few laughs along the way.
What are "klowns in my koffee"? They are the factors large and small that make you less than you are. A "klown" can be a grossly incompetent boss,
a short-sighted policy or a moronic coworker. They won't kill you, at least not immediately, but they abrade the soul
as you scrape past them to get through the day. Sometimes it's best to dump them out of the cup.


Day 161 - Of Sounds and Soffits

Daily Kup (My Life as a Gainfully Unemployed Person)
I hope everyone is having a wonderful Labor Day weekend.

We had two different Saturdays in one day. First, my family took me out to lunch to celebrate the last gasp of my birthday. We tend to extend birthdays in our family, both because it's sometimes difficult to get everyone in one spot on one day and also because we like celebrations with their included extra fun and special food.

Then we climbed up on the roof with pry bars and ripped the living heck out of the overhang under which the raccoon had hung her welcome mat. After we finish the project — tomorrow, if all goes according to plan — I'll publish the pictures and project plan for those of you who are thinking about installing aluminum soffits and for those of you who like to laugh at idiots on a roof.

Preview of coming attractions: The rotted soffit board finally resigns to the pry bar and pops off from the rafters, releasing a shower of half-eaten walnuts and raccoon poop onto the poor dopes waiting beneath. Good thing I ate the nice lunch before, because I didn't have the stomach for it afterward.

Kome On Hear The Noise ...

It's not always easy to write ... or concentrate .. or even form a spoken sentence at times in the constant pandemonium that is my house. My desk is on the edge of the living room, a location akin to being on the Space Shuttle launch pad during take-off. We have a TV, or computer that can be a TV, in every room that doesn't include a flushing mechanism. The lack of potty-located television is due only to my throwing a fit. Out of all this hive of electromagnetic signals, my little desktop is the only place where I can work and have access to my paper files and weird blog-centric apps. It is eight feet from the one TV out of all the others where the inhabitants congregate to do their screaming, stomping, and endless viewing of Ice Road Truckers and Charlie Rose. The older I get (see "birthday" above), the more I need quiet to think. I believe you see the conflict.

This is a fantastic site that helps: http://simplynoise.com/

It's a free white noise generator that also has settings for pink noise and brown noise. Pink noise (also called 1/f noise) is random noise where the power is uniformly spread over a specific spectrum of frequencies, such as 20-20,000 Hz for audio. The key term is 'uniformly' since there is an equal amount of noise power in each octave. Since white noise theoretically has frequencies extending to infinity, pink noise is white noise that is frequency banded and equalized. (Every once in a while I remember that I have an electrical engineering degree, though I don't remember why I thought it was a good idea.)

Brown noise is called that since it results from Brownian (random) motion, has more energy at low frequencies and then falls off at 6dB for each octave. It sounds a little like a waterfall and is somehow less harsh sounding than white or pink noise. The site also has a thunderstorm and crashing waves -- my personal favorites. The sounds not only cancel out some of the maelstrom but, like one of those metal poles you stick in the lawn to drive away moles with sound waves, seem to subliminally annoy the other people and eventually make them migrate to another room without them knowing why they did it. Problem solved!

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