Archive for the ‘Work’ Category

Surprise?

February 2, 2010

So the client drama that I told you about last week took an interesting twist today…

Earlier this morning hubby had a talk with the client’s (we’ll call her “G”) business partner/investor (let’s call him “V”).  Basically the hubs let him know what needed to be done to resolve the issues once and for all.  They just need to send us more text and more images and their site will look better.  V agreed.  We also reassured him that the bilingual capabilities of the site would be up and running by next week.  In fact we are updating all of our sites with the latest version of our software which runs a million times faster and is much more user-friendly (I hate that word, it is so over-used).  The bilingual functions are part of that upgrade.  Hubs also told them that they could pay off the rest of their balance over time.  It was all good.  V assured him that he would keep G under control and keep her from going off on us again.

Literally a few minutes later G called us to personally apologize for her behavior.  I don’t think I’ve ever heard a client apologize to us before, that was a huge surprise.

Then about six hours later we get forwarded email exchange between G and our business partner in the US (he usually handles all client relations but since this client is over here we had been more involved).  Her email started out as a request for an additional email server but then totally U-turned into this:

“Anyway your multi language not ready, We wanted to add Flash on web and Q already knows this but now he is telling me that need some one to do it,I mean we have to pay someone for design flash any way, We have pay to you 250USd for beginig I mean before starting web site and I told you that balance will be clear after web fnished.  Everything takes too long  time with you and be frankly I do not want to continue with your company. I kindly request you to refund of our payment.

Awaitig for your urgent response
Kind Regards”

What.  The.  Fuck.

He had already responded and agreed to refund her money, a fact that also took us by surprise.  As a company we had never really addressed whether or not we would give refunds, and even though it’s not a huge amount of money, it would be coming straight out of our pockets.  I wish he had talked to us before he responded to her, but I know he did it because he was frankly tired of dealing with her bullshit and would rather be rid of her.  He also wants to protect us from abusive clients.  I can’t say that we disagree, it just came as a total surprise.  We did not see this coming.  He had already taken down her website by the time I got his email.

I just finished drawing up a contract termination agreement.  They get their refund as long as they agree not to use any of the material we created for them.  For us it means a lot of hours down the drain, but for her it means she’s basically taken her business back to square one.  She don’t even have a logo now.

Le sigh…

Oh well.  Sometimes you just can help crazy people.

I do not run a charity.

January 26, 2010

Client drama had reared its ugly head this last week.  *facepalm*

How the hell does it happen?  They go from good client to bad client like warewholves under a full moon.  ARRROOWHHH!

First I should probably tell you a little more about what we do for our clients.  To say that we design websites would be an over-simplification, that’s what we used to do.  A year and a half ago when we started our business, we would both scower craigslist looking for any ole programming or design job that we knew we could do.  We got various clients doing this, but usually (okay, MOSTLY) with these gigs, people were always trying to get something for nothing.  Putting up a website that both looks good and works well takes hours and hours and hours of work.  We would put in these hours/days/weeks/…months of work, and then have to literally chase down payment from them, or they wanted so many changes that took so many more hours that end the end the payment wasn’t worth all the effort.  At a certain point we came to the conclusion that there had to be a way for us to get something for nothing as well.  Everybody else was doing it, why not us?  What I mean is, a way to make fully-fledged websites without all the hours of work.  There are three basic purposes for most websites:  publishing, selling, or social networking.  So if we could design a framework that could perform each of these functions by simply installing it onto a web address so hours of programming the same thing, over and over, would be eliminated.  Better yet, we would make our program easy enough to use so that when clients wanted changes they could just go make them on their own.

If you’re having a hard time understanding what I’m talking about, don’t worry, I didn’t know crap about any of this until about a year ago.  If you want an example of what I’m talking about, look at WordPress.  WordPress is the perfect example of a content management system (CMS) used for publishing.  It’s complicated, it’s got a lot of buttons, but most people are able to figure it out on their own and create their own websites.  We’re like WordPress, except we’re geared towards businesses and we have a lot more applications and functions.

So anyways, we’re still in the development/start-up phase of our business so we haven’t had a public release of our software yet.  Hopefully that will happen sometime in 2010.  Until then we are always trying to get new clients both in the US and Turkey.  One new client we have here is chick my age, who is starting up a mining export company with a few business partners.  Basically they ship stuff like chrome ore to China, pretty simple.  She’s a cool chick, speaks English well and I’d say she was a friend before she was a client.  Because of this we gave her a deep discount, and I mean DEEP.  We normally charge $2,000 dollars for a basic CMS website, but that includes a lot- custom web design, content writing, logo design, stock photos, hosting, etc, etc.  Because we are still developing a bilingual application for our websites (that button you click at the bottom or top of the page and it switches the language of the website, not easy to do) and her website would be the first to test it we gave her a huge deal.  We’re only charging her $500 dollars of which she has only paid half ($250).  Her website is very simple and very small, but like I said, she is also a start-up so she only gave us a tiny amount of content and a few pictures.  One thing we cannot do is invent fancy or interesting content for you…well, technically I have, but only for clients who are paying real money.

From the start she LOOOOVED the website, and I got tons of glowing feedback from her along the way.  When I finally finished putting in all the data and images she sent us (which by the way she sent on Dec 28 and her site was up by Jan 5) she still loved it.  Then, it turned….

She had a “friend” of hers look at the site and they told her it was too plain.  What the fuck does this “friend” know about web design anyway?  Suddenly she hates everything about the site.  She sent us links to other websites (one that sells cell phones, the other a music website) and tells that she wants her site to be more like them.  Here is what her site would actually look like if she would send us more content.  She also says she wants flash.  No other description, just, “I want flash.”  Flash what?  Dancing rocks?  You sell fucking ROCKS, fyi.

Flash is web animation, if you’re not familiar, and it is EXPENSIVE and time-consuming to develop.  For that reason, flash is one of the only things we don’t offer.  If a client really wants flash on their website then we hire an outside flash developer and money has to be paid from the client directly to person creating the flash animation.  In other words, Flash=Money.

Then she also starts bitching that it took three months to put her site up.  Uhh, your emails say differently lady, we only got your content a week before your site went up.  You had “Coming Soon” page on your website for three months because it took you that long to get off your ass.  We don’t put up blank websites.  Did I mention she’s only paid $250 dollars?  That’s what I usually charge just for a logo design (and yes, I designed her logo AND a business card on top of that).

Friend or not, we just don’t have time to deal with this crap anymore, we have too many clients that have paid full price and we have plenty of work still to do for them.  We gave her two options, 1) Stop bitching, or 2) Pay in full by the end of the month.  If you don’t do either we will take down your site.  Period.

Luckily (for her) she came to her senses.  She chose option #1.  Maybe it was just her time of the month?  The full moon has passed and she’s no longer werewolf-cunt, I mean, client.  We’ll just have to see what happens on the next full moon…

If you want to see a hilarious representation of how web designing can go straight to hell, check out this comic by The Oatmeal.  It is sooo true.

Slow Day/Survey

November 11, 2009

I woke up very early this morning 6:30 am to be exact.  I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately because I’m getting bigger and the bed is staying the same size.  We currently have a full-sized bed, add a full-sized woman and full-sized man, the bed is a full size too small!  I’m tall, 6’1″, and although my feet don’t hang off the bed, my arms do which makes me sleep with them scrunched up near my body and that is reeking havoc on my shoulders.  I even had him switch places with me last night because the left shoulder was calling it quits.  Today I made it known that all I want for Christmas is a new bed.

I don’t really know what to do with myself in the day time.  We ran all of our errands this morning, ate lunch and now I’m just sitting around.  He’s playing a video game.  We’re both night people.  We both work at night, I cook and clean at night, and I just don’t really ‘wake up’ until the sun goes down.  Also now that we are nine hours ahead of the US, night-time is when we can make business calls and talk to friends and family.  Dawn is our usual bed time.  If we both didn’t love garlic so much, I swear we were vampires…well besides that whole, not craving blood thing…

Annnnyways, in baby news, I’m now 20 weeks, the official half-way mark.  WOOO!  I’ll try my best to take and post new bump pictures tomorrow.

The baby is growing like crazy, but thankfully I haven’t put on too much extra weight, although my appetite is now in overdrive, so we’ll see what happens there.  I have just started to grow out of my clothes believe it or not.  Tomorrow we’re going to go buy my first pair of maternity pants, although I’m dubious about our ability to find a pair long enough for me, Turkish women are fucking tiny.  I’m also anxiously awaiting the bra extenders that my mom has mailed me, anything mailed takes at least two weeks.  My cup size is still the same but the chest circumference is not.  I’m going to try to put off buying new bras as long as possible.

On the medical front, we decided together not to go through with the Down Syndrome screening that the doctor scheduled.  I came to this decision on my own after doing some research, discussed it with the hubs, and he agreed.  First of all, I’m at a very low risk time in my life.  If I was over 35, I would definitely go through with it, but I’m 25, and the risk of having a Downs baby right now is very minimal.  Second, the blood test is known to sometimes result in a false positive, and the only test they can do to actually confirm it is an amniocentesis, which I will NOT do.  Third, all of the other tests and sonograms have looked totally normal, another reason to believe that we are not at risk.  Fourth, and most importantly, there is nothing that can be prevented or treated, nothing would change.  She is our baby and she is already loved no matter what, nothing can change that either.

I think we finally decided on a name and middle name, but I’m keeping that under wraps for now.  Gotta have a little mystery!  😉

Now for a fun survey that Leese tagged me on over at her blog.  If you want to take it, please do!  I’m too lazy too tag people right now.

This is a one-word answer survey, uh oh, I’m gonna try…

1. Where is your cell phone? HUSBAND

2. Your hair? THINNING

3. Your mother? SAINT

4. Your father? SWEETHEART

5. Your favorite food? CHICKENNUGGETS

6. Your dream last night? RANDOM

7. Your favorite drink? MILK

8. Your dream/goal? TRAVEL

9. What room are you in? BEDROOM

10. Your hobby? DRAWING

11. Your fear? POVERTY

12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? TRAVELING

13. Where were you last night? BED

14. Something that you aren’t? MEAN

15. Muffins? BLUEBERRY

16. Wish list item? BED!

17. Where did you grow up? AUSTIN

18. Last thing you did? PIZZA

19. What are you wearing? CAPRIS

20. Your TV? NONE

21. Your pets? STATESIDE

22. Friends? MANY

23. Your life? UNPREDICTABLE

24. Your mood? CALM

25. Missing someone? EVERYONE

26. Vehicle? NONE

27. Something you’re not wearing? BRA

28. Your favorite store? DIESEL

29. Your favorite color? PURPLE

30. When was the last time you laughed? DAILYSHOW

31. Last time you cried? HORMONES

32. Your best friend? TORI

33. One place that I go to over and over? GROCERY

34. One person who emails me regularly? MOM

35. Favorite place to eat? HOME

Okay… so now I have to tag 6 people:  Consider yourself tagged!

Demotivated

September 21, 2009

I don’t know what is wrong with me lately.  I feel like I’ve hit an all time low in my motivation levels.  It’s driving me crazy but drumming up the motivation to do anything about it is well, hard.

I don’t want to get out of bed

I don’t want to shower

I don’t want to blog

I don’t want work (<-that one is really bad)

I don’t want to read

I don’t want to write

I don’t want to cook

I don’t want to clean

This is just the short list, and mind you these are the things that I normally enjoy doing.  I don’t want to say I’m depressed because I am generally in a good mood all the time, I just feel suddenly chronically lazy.  I don’t want to blame the pregnancy either because the worst of the fatigue that I had a month ago is finally going away so I actually do have energy these days…I just don’t have any motivation to use it.  It felt like I was getting more done a month ago even though I was tired all the time.  The high I usually get from accomplishing things just isn’t there anymore, and it’s got me feeling bewildered and lost.

I feel especially guilty about not wanting to work because my husband has been working his ass of lately, clocks 18 hour days on a daily basis in front of his computer and never takes a day off.  That should be motivation right there to work harder, but I have a hard time even logging 12 hours each week.  I seriously need to be shaken out of this funk.

We are taking a little vacation this weekend to Cyprus, and I’m hoping the change of scenery will help to improve this unproductive state I’ve been in for the past few weeks.  Something needs to change and fast, or else it’s going to start affecting our business.

*sigh*  Here’s hoping things will get better soon.

People Magazine, Cropped and Shopped Screech

August 10, 2009

I guess Dustin Diamond’s class reunion invitation got lost in the mail…

I was surfing on my college friend and fellow blogger’s site GlitterHorse and he did a post about one of the latest issues of People Magazine, and he pondered “Where is Screech?  WTF?”

33save__oPtWhile I wasn’t enirely shocked to see this, given Dustin Diamond’s erratic behavior over the years, but c’mon, it’s the oldest rule in the magazine biz: Controversy Sells!  What was People thinking?

Then I noticed something else.  That 1989 cast photo seemed off.  As far as I had ever seen, there weren’t any cast group photos that didn’t also include Screech.  He was a major character, after all.  So I did a little Google sleuthing, and it took no time at all to find the original–

screech-got-the-ol-crop-26742-1248897058-3Not only did they crop him out, but if you look closely, they also Photoshopped out the top of his afro.  That’s cold.

I’m not clear on the reasoning behind all of this.  I doubt with Dustin Diamond’s need for fame and money he would just turn down a People Magazine cover article, no matter what he thinks of the show that made him famous.  Was it a direct snub from the magazine itself?  Was his name even mentioned in the article?  Was it demanded by the rest of the cast?  I don’t get it.  Also, I can’t go out and just buy the magazine to satisfy my curiosity because I have not yet found a source for English magazines.

Does anyone have any theories?  Did anyone else notice this or read the article?

All Quiet On The Blogging Front

July 28, 2009

I’ve noticed a general silence this week among most of my blog friends, in both posting and commenting…myself included.  Hope everyone is okay!  Probably just busy with life…myself included.

As you can see I’ve been slowly but surely catching up with my Weeds recaps, although I’m not sure if many people are interested.  That’s okay, I’ll just keep on plugging and hope that I can find some fans will find me through google or something.

So this is sort of an update post on what’s been going on in my life.

In general I’ve been bogged down with work.  New clients keep crawling out of the woodwork, as it seems that we are the only kids in town who know anything about Linux.  Microsoft has all the technicians here pretty well brainwashed, so there is a serious need for good Linux solutions.  Because anyone who knows anything knows that Microsoft is crap.  I can’t go into too much detail because of confidentiality agreements, but one client needs to be able to send streaming video web broadcasts from around the world, and another client needs an automated sound decibel monitoring device for clubs.  I tell you, coffee shops are excellent places to make new connections!

In some tragic news, my favorite cat, Otis went missing from my mom’s three weeks ago and has not been seen since.  If you remember, we were sharing a house with my mom, so he was very comfortable with the environment, and didn’t run away because of a sudden change.  Our cats and dog go in and out as they please through the dog door, and out of all my cats I’d say Otis was the most “street smart” and usually pretty cautious.  My mom put fliers with a picture on every door up and down the block, but she got no calls.  I have a feeling he’s not coming back.  I’m devastated.  I spent a whole day in bed a few weeks ago crying.  The worst part is I’m thousands of miles away and I can’t help look for him.  I kept having dreams about finding him, I’d wake up and call my mom to see if there was any news, but there never was.  He lives in my dreams now.

My poor Bubs...I hope you're in a better place.

My poor Bubs...I hope you're in a better place.

Okay, enough tears and sadness, I have good news too!

I’M GOING TO HAVE A BABY!

Where there is death, there is always new life.  I just found out a few days ago, it’s really early, probably only a few weeks.  We’re super excited, we’ve been wanting this for awhile and we just started trying.  I haven’t told the whole family yet, just my parents and some close friends, so please don’t say anything about it on my Turkish blog or on Facebook.  I’m waiting a few more weeks to tell everyone.  I’ve got my fingers and toes crossed that everything will go okay.  I’m such a worrier.

😀

Progress…and a new blog!

July 8, 2009

I know I’ve been promising it for weeks, and my new Turkish travel blog is finally on its feet with a grand total of one post, but hey, it’s there!

You can now check out my adventures by going to http://turkdelights.wordpress.com

Now, some inquiring minds might ask, “Why do you need a separate blog for that?  Why not post all your stories and pictures on this one?”

Well…good question.  The short answer is that I really want to return this blog to its original intention, not a blog about me, but about my point of view on TV shows, movies, and silly things I find on the internet.  I’d like to keep my personal life more in the background.

Also, the other big reason is that my family and some of my friends don’t know about this blog and I don’t want them to so I can be free to say whatever the hell I want.  The travel blog is safe for grandma and grandpa.  But you, my bloggy friend, are welcome on both!  Just keep this blog a secret for me 🙂  Oh, who am I kidding?  I’ll get found out if I’m not already.  Also, just so you don’t get confused, I refer to my husband as “Q” on Turkish Delights because 1. That’s his real nickname, and 2. A few members of our family don’t know that we’re married yet, and I don’t want a bunch of angry emails about why they weren’t invited, and then I’ll have to explain that there wasn’t a wedding ceremony…blah blah blah.

In other news, I’m still up to my neck in work, so those Weeds recaps are going to be extra late.  Good news is we scored our first client over here!  They’re a body-building website that needs a re-design for their streaming video players, and we’re also going to sell them space on our servers.  Woot!  Work never stops.

What’s been keeping me going with all this non-stop work is music.  I’ve been thinking about starting a new section at bottom of my posts to discuss what I can’t stop listening to that week, but we’ll see if I can keep that up or not.  This week I cannot stop listening to Adele.  Just when I thought these young Brit soul singers were becoming a dime a dozen, Adele came along and proved me wrong.  Girl has got some pipes!  Her first album, 19, blows her contemporaries like Amy Winehouse and Duffy out of the water.  I have to wait till hubby wakes up and shows me how to hack back into youtube (yes, it’s blocked here) and I’ll post some videos so you can see what I mean.  I can’t get her single “Chasing Pavements” out of my head, and I think she wrote “My Same” about me and hubby.  Just to prove what a music schizo I am, the other album I can’t stop listening to is Pimp to Eat by the Analog Brothers.  Kool Keith with Ice-T…it just doesn’t get better than that!

“Chasing Pavements”

“Cold Shoulder”

If you like these you should also look up her song “Hometown Glory” on youtube as well.  I couldn’t find a version that would allow me to embed it.

I would post some Analog Brothers, but I don’t want to drive you all away.  If you’re feeling extra freaky, look them up.

I’ve got some catching up to do

July 5, 2009

Oi, things are getting right back to normal around here.  How do I know?  We got our internet hooked up, and now I’m up to my neck in work!  Which is fabulous but I’ve had no time for blogging.  I haven’t had time to finish any of my Weeds recaps (I’ve got 503 half done but that’s about it) and the new travel blog is coming along at a snail’s pace.

I am making huge strides in work though.  I finally stopped being stubborn about learning Adobe Illustrator, and now I’m in love with it.  I don’t know what my problem was, I should have learned it along time ago, but I’ve just been holding onto Photoshop since high school and was too afraid to try something new.  It took only a day to get the hang of it, and now I’m attempting to layout a 35 page help manual for a website all in Illustrator.  It takes me hours just layout one page (I’ll get faster with time) but they’re gorgeous pages, and I’m thrilled.  Now I no longer carry the immortal shame of being a graphic designer who doesn’t know Illustrator.

Adana is still treating us well, but we did have a little psycho-drama with Grandma earlier.  She took his cross necklace from our bedside table while we were sleeping and hid it.  She doesn’t understand why it’s important to him, and thinks she’s doing it for his own good (Muslim country, blah blah blah).  We tore the room apart looking for it, she denied taking it, and even called the police to convince us she was innocent.  Even they could tell it was a bunch of stupid drama.  Right after they left, the cross mysteriously showed up in the hat he was wearing and took off right before the police came to the door.  We just pretended like we didn’t find it and stayed out of the house for the rest of the day.  Total waste of an afternoon, I was so pissed, but I was impressed at how well Hubby kept his cool about it.  Needless to say we are ready to move out of here!

He wants to move to Antalya, on the west coast of Turkey, and after seeing some pictures on Google, I’m all for it.  Check it out:

antalya

antalya

I think you can see why I didn’t need much convincing!  It’s a total tourist town, and people have been telling us it’s boring in the off season because no one is there, but that sounds more like a selling point to me.  Plus there’ll be lots more English and American people around so I don’t have to be the deaf-mute in all conversations.

I’ll get back to blogging as soon as I catch up on this work, promise.

New Laptop Babies

June 3, 2009

Okay, in case you’re new here, we own a software company.  I’m only a multimillionaire in my dreams.  Owning your own business, no matter what type, is the fastest way I can think of to go broke…besides a coke or gambling addiction.  Someday we’ll be wildly successful, but today is not that day.  Success is a moving target.  My husband and I rely 110% on our computers for our livelihood.  I’d rather have my car break down than one of our computers break down.  They’re all ancient beasts by computer standards and prone to breaking.  Since we’re going to be moving half way across the globe this summer I knew it was time for a major technology overhaul so that our business could thrive overseas.  (BTW, I posted the latest on Another Deportation Update)

The first problem is power.  Over there in Europe (read- Turkey) they have a different voltage rating.  Most of the world, including Europe, uses a 220 volt/50 hertz system. A handful of other countries, including the United States, have 110 volt/60 hertz electricity, which is believed to be safer. As a result, appliances in these nations are designed to connect to a specific type of power source, and using American devices in European outlets and vice versa can result in havoc.  One solution is a voltage transformer, a bulky and expensive piece of equipment.  He’s told me his family has some, but I’m still going to look into getting one here because I know there’s two types of transformers depending on the kind of device you’re using, and I want to make sure we have the right kind.

The second problem is transportability.  I can’t exactly haul our three desktop computers over there, because I would have no room for clothes and my arms would fall off trying to carry them all.  Early on I knew laptops where going to be the only option.  I can’t take the laptop I talked about in Laptop Rx because it is a loaner and it is starting to have fatal errors on the hard drive.  I have finally decided on taking one of the desktops, but just the case, in one of my checked bags.  I’m going to take out all the important bits (hard drive and video card will be in the carry-on), pack it with plenty of padding in a hard-sided suitcase, and pray the motherboard survives the journey.  We’ll have to buy a new monitor over there.  I was having a hard time getting the money together to buy a new laptop though, and since our business is on hold, no income is rolling in.  I did get some contract work, writing documentation, but I haven’t been paid yet.  My mom graciously decided that I needed to save my dwindling funds and this was going to count as my birthday and Christmas present this year.  We went to Walmart (I hate that place and I’m ashamed to say I went there to buy anything) and I knew exactly what I was looking for: Dell Inspiron 15 in Darth Vader Black (I made up the color name).  This is the first time I have ever had a new computer, it’s awesome.  A few days later our business partner, knowing our computer dilemma, donated a webbook he never uses.  A webbook is a mini-laptop.  This one is an Eee PC made by ASUS.  Check out the laptop love, I hope they make babies:

DSCN6386

I’m not posting this to brag, I’m just incredibly thankful that I was able to get what I needed to keep my business going.  It just goes along with my theory that the Universe always provides, and if you believe that good things will happen, they just might.  In a lot of ways I could look around and think that my life is crumbling (because…it sort of is) but I’m trying my best to focus on the good things and not let my stress bring me down.

Laptop Rx

May 27, 2009

I was without my laptop all day yesterday and today and was like my left arm was missing.  I could feel it in my periphery beside me on the bed where it usually is but when I would look directly at it, it wasn’t there.  The other two computers we have I’ve already taken apart so they’ll be ready for packing (I jumped the gun a bit on that one).  When I say it’s mine it’s not, it’s only a loaner from my mom.  It used to be my step-dad’s but I’m the only one in the house that uses it right now, and it’s my main work computer.  It’s a Dell Latitude D610 so it’s almost a classic, but the old girl still runs pretty nice.  I’m saving up to buy a new one to take with me to Turkey because my mom is a little sentimental about this one and I understand.  Lucky, so lucky for me my step-brothers own a Dell computer refurbishment business.  I used to work for them sorting and testing parts.  I dropped it off yesterday and picked it up today, I offered money but my step-brother refused.  They didn’t have to much–the main problem was heat, it would run for about 20 minutes, overheat and shutdown.  I thought maybe it needed a new heatsink or fan, but it turns out it was simply clogged with dust.  Now when I touch the bottom of the laptop I don’t get third degree burns on my hand.  Major plus.

Since they fixed my left arm, I must give the family business a shameless plug:

parts-people-logo

Now I have a computer business of my own but we deal in software, not hardware.  However, I still learned quite a bit by working there, even though I thought I’d never need that knowledge again.  How wrong I was.  Never turn down an opportunity to learn something new, even if you think it has nothing to do with your life.  You might find out otherwise someday and you’ll be thankful.