Thursday, March 30, 2006

Katie's business trip, day 2


7 hours is too long to spend in one room. In the dark. Watching PowerPoint slides.

Putting the design engineer in charge of the certain lectures isn’t smart. He tends to be overly detailed and viciously protective of this programming decisions.

If you’re a bad speaker, someone in the room is counting (and writing on a post-it) how many times you say “um.” Surprisingly, this wasn’t me. Not surprisingly, I adore the person who did this.

If you’re going to bring one pair of dress shoes, don’t make them heels. High heels. That look pretty and make me feel tall, but force me to consider crawling down the hall by the end of day 2.

You can drink too much coffee. It will make you feel jittery and sick.

A chocolate cookie with white chocolate chips – still warm and gooey – can make me want to weep with gratitude after 5 hours of lecture on day 1.

Bringing ice cream instead of cookies on day 2 also almost made me want to cry, but this time in despair.

I get overly emotional and dramatic in times of mental stress and sleepiness.

You can buy my affection, so free gifts are nice. I very much enjoyed my coffee mug, pen, notebook and post-it notes. Thank you.

If you want my affection today, you’ll have to offer some sort of luxurious vacation or a car. I’m freaking exhausted.

Putting a design engineer in front of his actual machine, then asking him to demo it? It actually goes worse than his lectures. And takes twice as long. I desperately wanted to throw my shoe at him.

For all my complaining, it’s an excellent class. There are only 12 students, all of whom I like a great deal. The 4 instructors are undeniably brilliant and seem to balance technical details, clinical applications and helpful tips extraordinarily well. I’m quite glad, in the abstract sense, that I’m here. But I’m tired, drinking yet another cup of coffee as I write this and prepare to head downstairs, sore from sitting in the same chair, and my tolerance level for learning seems to decrease every day. But today is day 3 of 3, so I’ll force my way through it.

And hope for cookies instead of ice cream this afternoon.


J. Dryden said...

You left out my favorite part of such days: the very end, when the person up front asks, "Any questions?" And everyone in the room knows--*knows* that if there *are* no questions, this Bataan Death March can end and you can all go home. So please, you whisper to yourself, trying to telepathically bully everyone else in the room--*please* don't ask any questions.

Someone *always* asks questions.

And they're never *good* questions.

But they're very *long* questions.

Demanding even *longer* answers. While you're sitting there screaming (in your mind) "Shut up!!! Will you SHUT UP!!! FOR THE LOVE OF A MERCIFUL GOD, WITH YOU JUST--SHUT--UP?!?!?!"

They never shut up.

Hate that.

post-doc said...

The short answer is that yes, Dryden and I have this hatred in common. But no, it didn't bother me in this particular case since I walked out of the room after each lecture to try to retain some level of sanity. So I don't really know what the questions sounded like since only those with questions remained in the room. Nice.

Oh, and I received brownies with frosting and sprinkles on day 3. So I was vaguely annoyed because of the lack of cookies, but not bitterly disappointed. Good stuff.

SBL said...

Really nice reading. Thanks for sharing.

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