Saturday, February 21, 2015


When I switched over to an Apple computer from a PC I had a chance to clean house. I have tons of files, electronic tons. I have 3 desk top hard drives and they contain my backups plus a huge amount of music and images of art. Apple does a pretty good job of organizing all the files and I already have a small portion of my music collection cataloged and stored away on the new computer. The images are a little more difficult as duplicates are often stored under different names.

In the meantime, my old computer appears to have lost it's mind. I hadn't looked at it for a day or two and when I went to get some more files off of it, I found it unresponsive. I rebooted and the progress bar would go halfway and then stop. I did it again with the same results. Finally, I shut it down and will try starting it up again in a few hours. If it never responds again I am still okay as the 3 backups have everything I need.

I returned to cataloging my photos and that is when progress slowed. I ran across some photos taken at one of the quarterly meetings I attended when I was working. The company I worked for was the nations largest and most profitable specialty contractors. I had started working for them as a Superintendent for drywall and steel stud construction in the Sacramento region.. We were building high rise office buildings and hospitals at the time. Before I retired I had become an Instructor in the Strategic Development Department of the parent company and went to offices all over the country to train staff in the use of our estimating software. The quarterly meeting that had me so interested was the winter meeting and the Corporate Christmas Party. I think it was the one in 2004 and it was held, as usual, at the Hyatt in Kansas City. One photo in particular evokes memories of a tragedy. There is a large art piece hanging over the lobby consisting of hundreds of mirror finished balls, about 4" in diameter. They are suspended so that they resemble a giant pyramid. The picture of the pyramid was taken from the walkway above the lobby. The same lobby where 216 were injured and some 114 were killed as the walkways fell down into the lobby.  This happened in July of 1981. Now, there is nothing in the lobby or walkway above that would indicate that such a great tragedy had occurred. But, standing there, on the walkway, I felt a chill pass over me as I thought about it.

I moved on to other photos and then I decided to visit the company's website. I've only been gone 9 years but things had really changed. People that I knew as carpenters were now managers of branch offices. Those I knew as estimators were now now corporate executives. The company had always been great when it came to promoting from within. The CEO was a carpenter when he first started, as were lots of other managers. Construction has always been a great career for anyone that felt that college was not for them. If you were motivated you could easily be making six figures.

Okay, time to try starting the old pc...

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