February 19, 2001: Web Design

Ok llamas, I decided that after having had our servers down for part of the weekend, we should go to the new format that I have been working on. You llamas out there will have to let us know whether or not you think that it is cool. Loopy and I think that the new look of the site totally rocks! Nate and Bob haven’t had a chance to see it yet, it will be a surprise. We have a brand new digital camera so don’t be surprised if cool new images start coming soon. I don’t get too much opportunity to do web design so this was kind of fun. Most of my personal work on the web includes compliance issues and server administration. It is fun to do design sometimes.

You can check out one of the pages that Loopy and I have made at www.WasteWatcher.org. This was our first commercial site and we still administer it today. In addition to the new look of our site, we are hoping that our new format allows for easier navigation of the site. We have noticed that many of our surfers never noticed that we had links going to more pages. So now, everything is in text over there on the left so that you can find it easily. And, the average download time of this page should be screaming fast compared to the old graphic one. We have a fast connection here in our Ithaca office and sometimes we forget that many of you are still using dial-up connections to get to the internet 🙁  So, this should make visiting our site more enjoyable for many of you. Plus, new upgrades were added to our web servers this weekend and there should be a slight reduction in latency from our new drive subsystem (in case you were wondering what gets done around here on the weekends.) For you gear-heads out there, we added a new RAID 5 subsystem to our main web server as well as eased back on our bandwidth throttling for BITS [Later, SGL]  so that our users get a more pleasent surfing experience. For you high-bandwidth users, you should notice a significant increase in speed on the site and everyone should notice a little bit of reduced latency (the time it takes from the time you ask for the page until the time that you start to get it.) Plus, our new page design loads much, much faster than the old one.

Another exciting weekend for Loopy, Joey Llama (Bob Winans) and I as we drove down to Washington, DC to work. Loopy and Bob got introduced to my favorite bar tender, JJ, who works at Island Jim’s in Brookland. If you are ever in DC and have a hankering for unusual seafood dishes, that is the place to try. Tell JJ that Scott from “Sheep Guarding Llama” sent you! JJ is there on Tuesday through Saturday evening after about 5:00 pm. Island Jim’s is closed on Mondays. Most of our weekend was spent working at the office at Washington Hospital Center. The servers that run our lovely site are located there.

THE OFFICIAL LLAMA OF THE MONTH AWARD GOES TO JOE MILLER!

The word that we have heard is that Joe has been a big follower of the site and we would like to start a tradition of honoring our loyal devotees. Coming to this site everyday has got to be exhausting! So, all of you that know Joe, tell him that the llamas said hi and congratulate him.

February 19, 2001

The current big house movies are still Coyote Ugly and Bring It On. Neither of these movies have anything but cuties galore as redeeming qualities. Bad plots, directing, everything…but so much fun to watch. Of course, Coyote Ugly has Leann Rimes dancing on the bar so I have to be addicted to it! I have the single of “Can’t Fight the Moonlight ” sitting on my desk and I listen to it all the time. Leann rules!

We have a new section now! Thanks to Loopy, we now have a downloads section. Right now there is only one thing to download. For those of you who stay up late enough to watch Conan, you will be familiar with Triumph, the poop on dog. Well, one year ago today, DJ Loopy wrote a tribute song to Triumph because he is so cool. The song has become a staple of all parties thrown by SGL. It was first played, Feb. 20th last year at Loopy and my “Empty Apartment” party that we threw the day before we moved out of our townhouse in Rochester to move down here to beautiful Ithaca. The song was a huge hit and everyone has been requesting copies of it. Well, now you can finally listen to it. If you don’t understand the song, I suggest watching Conan until you see Triumph once or twice and then it will be obvious. Or, go on the web (obviously you can get to the web) and look up some clips using words like, “Triumph, Conan, poop, Westminster.” And as always, the best search engine is www.Google.com, who run their shop completely on Linux servers.

Soon, we hope to be bringing you more and more cool stuff to download. Mostly it will be music, I am sure. I will see what I can do about convincing Loopy to let our band, “Evil Petting Zoo” release some of their catalog onto MP3 format so that all of you llamas can listen to our music. We have been played on 90.5 WBER in Rochester so we must be pretty awesome. But no matter, I am sure that Bob and Nate will be happy to grace us with some tunage at some point, regardless.

There is also a rumor that the Loopmeister might be whipping up some gaming excitement for you all. I have already had the opportunity to play some of the crap, err I mean cool stuff that he has made. I will see what I can do about getting some online and downloadable stuff for you guys.

February 19th and Earlier

SGL (Sheep Guarding Llama) started in the Autumn of 2000 with some basic house information and directions and announcements for the upcoming New Year’s Eve Party (of which a few pictures still remain.) Starting in November of 2000 daily updates began appearing but these were not archived and have since been lost. On Feb. 20 – updates began staying on the page and it began to grow. Now we are careful to archive our prior news.

By the time we started archiving, we had already reached a fair level of popularity. Our first announcement of an LotM came on our second day of archiving. We already had achieved a high number of readers unknown to us here at SGL by Jan. 1, 2001.

All “dailies” posted before February 19, 2001 should appear under the “Looking Back” category and have been written years later when the opportunity to fill in events presented itself.  Filling in the gaps on SGL is an ongoing effort to make the most complete record of my life as possible.

October 26, 1995: Pizza Hut

After deciding to drop of GMI Engineering and Management Institute (later to become Kettering University) in order to pursue a degree in Classical Guitar and Trombone Performance I needed to find work as I would no longer be working as an engineer with Ben-Mer Manufacturing up in Rochester. This is probably best as they were crooks there anyway and completely incompetent. I wasn’t learning anything and getting no where. It was a really crappy and stressful place to work.

So, Josh had worked at Pizza Hut in Geneseo for a while and had recently moved on to a store up in Rochester and he put in a good word for me – hopefully that isn’t why I got the job. So I took a job at Pizza Hut in Geneseo as a pizza maker. Not very exciting nor did it pay very well but it fit my schedule and allowed me to go to college while I worked.

Over time I would become the team lead, one of only three dough masters, one of the top two pizza makers and even try my hand at waiting tables while at Pizza Hut which I left for a while, came back to for a short time and then finally left completely in 1997.

The last job that I would do there before leaving was to play classical guitar in the restaurant for tips but the waitresses complained to the manager that I was making far more money than them and I was told that making the customers happy just wasn’t appreciated. It was neat while it lasted and I was making over $20 an hour in tips which was great compared to normal Pizza Hut pay.

Overall the PH experience was valuable only in learning how awful jobs can be. Most jobs at this level are. I had my first real experience with a sexist boss and experienced the glass ceiling first hand. Sexual discrimination against the male staff was so drastic that they didn’t even attempt to hide it. We were told by Wendy, the store manager, that only women could be waitresses and only waitresses could become managers since no one could be a manager without having done all the different jobs. So barred men from waiting tables as a means to barring them from any and all promotions. I only made team lead because the area manager over Wendy promoted me when Wendy wasn’t around.

It was neat working in the busiest Pizza Hut in upstate New York for a while. It was a good experience, but the best part was getting to leave when I finally did.