First off, as far as scheduling is concerned, the current break should last through November. At this point, my usual break for NaNoWriMo is fast approaching, and it seems silly to get back into the habit of posting every day again just to stop a month later. So expect me back in December.
Now, as far as why things went so long. First off, the hockey book is on hiatus as well. It turns out there is next to no information on the Western Michigan Wolves and the early years of the Kalamazoo Wings on the internet, or even in the league office. This is not to say that this book will never be written, but it's going to take more digging than previously thought to make this book what it should be.
Why can't I dig as deeply or as quickly as thought? Well, that's because I'm finally free of bonds of contractual labor at Alcoa. After years of trying, I am finally a full-time Purdue employee. It has been quite a transition, but a nice one. It's kind of funny how it finally came about, so let me tell the story in full.
I've had different phone interviews with Purdue before, and countless applications sent in. I thought I had landed a job with Agriculture IT after two rounds of face-to-face interviews there which culminated in a ding letter mere hours after my father-in-law had a heart attack.* I hadn't had any serious action from Purdue since then until this summer.
*That was a banner day, let me tell you.
Back in June, I had a promising phone interview in connection with some software Purdue had developed. I would be, as I understood it, somewhere between a consultant and a support agent for this software. This phone interview led to an all-day in-person interview that ended with me giving a presentation on their software. After meeting what felt like everybody remotely connected to this software and then getting to tell the people that write, support, and "sell" this software about their own product, I was pretty fried, but confident. I made sure to stop by Harry's and treat myself to a draught Old Style after that one. I went home and expected the inevitable call to start discussing the nuts and bolts of an offer.
The next day, my phone rang. It was Purdue, but it was not the position I had just interviewed for. It was instead to come in and interview for a different position that I, frankly, did not even remember applying for.* As confident as I was I had the other job, I remembered how things went down with Ag IT the year before and quickly agreed to come in later the next afternoon. When I got there, I sat down and had a quick, breezy interview. I was probably a bit more loose in that interview than usual, thinking this was merely a back up plan.
*This is not surprising, though. Like I said, I applied to Purdue so many times for so many positions, there is no way to remember them all.
It turns out, it was a good idea to have a back up plan. The second job quickly moved into ironing out nuts and bolts of an offer, while the first job went silent. It was to the point where I hoped I would have an offer on the table from the second job before I left on vacation so I wouldn't have to worry about coming back to Alcoa. That didn't quite work out, but it was close. I had a little bit of contact with Purdue while I was on vacation just to through the fine print, so to speak, and was emailed on that Sunday we returned that I had an offer that I needed to come in and sign on Monday.
First thing Monday morning, I put in three days' notice with Alcoa. A bit short, but Purdue did want me to start quickly so I was in and somewhat trained before school started. Could I have worked a week? Oh, probably. But I hardly had three days worth of things to finish up at Alcoa,* and I certainly wasn't going to start anything new. Besides, for as much as I had put up with for practically nothing for two years, I had no qualms about taking a couple days for myself. I was a contractor for a company that had absolutely no intention of hiring me on full time, nor any intention of giving any sort of raise or better benefits, but still have practically all the responsibilities of other full time employees.
*Remember, I was coming back from a vacation, so I had nearly everything as wrapped up as possible before I left for that anyway.
So, yeah, they were lucky to get three days out of me, honestly. I left to a rather nasty email that was sent to all of Alcoa Lafayette about how I had put everybody in a bind. I struggled mightily to care.
I started the next Monday at Purdue and have now been here for a month and eleven days.* I have settled in nicely here and have opened all sorts of doors now both for myself and my immediate family. The benefits are awesome, the pay increase was substantial, tuition benefits are awfully nice not just for myself and Kristine, but for our future children as well. Everything is good with us.
*But who's counting?
Now that things have settled down for me, I feel like it's about time for me to get back into the routine of posting here again as well. And it will happen, just not yet, for what I said above. It's nice to get back to writing, especially doing it in an academic setting. I'm guessing that by the time I'm back to writing here every day, the NFL mess will have more or less settled down, but that's okay. There's always something new to write about in the world sports, right?