Friday, December 10, 2004

Planetary "Um"

I need to write...right now, if only for a lack of anything better to do. Since I quit this semester, I don't even have homework to do, or not to do and to inspire me to find something more interesting to do.
Even if I did, this would probably end up being that more interesting thing anyway.
I think Jeff loaded the wrong driver on my Mom's computer when he installed the networked printer for her. When she tries to print, it prints several thousand copies of gibberish. Can we be more careful next time, Jeff? I'm going to have to fix this now.
I went on a tour with WEA yesterday to Petersen Manufacturing Inc. in Farr West. It was fascinating.
One thing that struck me is that Steve Petersen knows every little facet of his business. He knows how every part is manufactured, he knows where every part is going, what it will be used for, and he calls his 430 or so employees each by name.
I asked him how much of his day was spent walking the floors of his factories, and his answer explained a lot of how he knows everything about everything. He said that 30% of his day is spent walking the floors, and that's not as much as he'd like. So that's quite a bit.
I've heard the term "management by walking around" before, and I believe in it. Yesterday's tour only reinforced that belief.
I want my business. I really do. I want a job where I enjoy going in every day, and it's a sacrifice to call in sick. And I have no interest whatsoever in writing a resume ever again. It seems to a certain degree that going somewhere and asking for a job is a form of begging.
There's a weakness in not being able to find your own value to society and creating the job that you need. I'm afraid of my own employment philosophy. God, what if I'm right? Scary stuff, and a sad commentary on American society's ugly streak of unemployment.
The other night Crystal and Julianne and I took the kids to Salt Lake to see the lights and a star show. Star shows aren't what they used to be, and neither is the planetarium, so we ended up seeing an IMAX 3D show called "Snowman Vs. Santa Claus." The 3D stuff scared the kids a couple of times right at the start, and it was hard to get them to keep their 3D glasses on. And then the show was only 30 minutes long...not worth the $8 per adult and $5 per child that we paid.
We had hot chocolate after the show, and then we drove around Temple Square to get a peek at lights. Rachel fell asleep in the car on the way home. I reminisced about falling asleep in the car and waking up to my Dad picking me up and carrying me to bed. I must have been five or six years old the last time that happened. It was about that time, too, that I was getting too big for my Dad to flip me on my bed. He hurt himself doing that once, and he didn't take the chance again.
I miss the Hansen Planetarium. It was in a grand old stone three story building that had creaky stairs and wrought iron banisters in it. There was an old phone booth in the lobby that belonged in some kind of period movie where Marty McFly has to make an emergency phone call to "Doc."
They also had an ultra-cool plasma sphere on the main floor that was a good three feet or so in diameter. Big damn thing. And if you stood up on its pedestal and touched it and then touched your friend who wasn't on the pedestal, you could give him a wicked zap.
Sure, the Clark Planetarium is a cool place, and I'll take my kids there, but it's not the neat old place that I learned about stars in. Kids need to know this stuff.
Well, I don't know what I'll do for the next four hours, other than sit in front of this computer. Looks like it's going to be a long shift. But my writing is rambling.

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