Friday, May 20, 2011

Miscellaneous Friday

This has been a killer week, emotionally and physically, but more so emotionally. Where shall I start?

The knowledge that my John Wesley small group study won't be needed by my church for the foreseeable future was a gut-wrenching blow. I probably over-reacted, since I can still write it and see what else I can do with it. Still, it was an emotional setback.

Yesterday I was hoping to get my Bentonville flood study back out to FEMA, Revision 5. But the remapping after the remodeling after the remapping after the remodeling after the corrupt informal submission to FEMA was rejected after the formal Revision 4 submittal came back from FEMA with yet more comments showed that some additional remodeling was needed. Both I and the CADD tech lost time yesterday due to meetings and computer problems, so I didn't get the latest map till 4:00 PM, which showed ten cross-sections still needing work to get the map and the model to match. I worked on that till 6:30 PM, thinking I had them all done except for one, which I was convinced was a map problem. This morning the CADD tech convince me it was a model problem. I had that corrected and she had the map corrected and the annotated flood map produced by 11:00 AM. The entire report is now ready to go; I only have to stuff the maps and CD in pockets bound in the report. So it goes out by FedEx this afternoon, making the Monday deadline. Just barely.

Not getting the re-mapping until 4 PM yesterday, with it showing still much work to do, about caused me to lose it. I did throw a notebook across my office, and pounded the desk a few times, so I guess I did lose it in a sense. But I pushed on through. Another deadline met. Now back onto the third floodplain project, thence to the fourth and fifth. Someday I hope to get back to my training tasks.

Actually, this afternoon I think I will. I like to use Friday afternoons for miscellaneous stuff, such as: getting caught up on daily timesheets; getting caught up on daily activity logs; cleaning the week's accumulation of stuff off my desk; seeing what correspondence needs to be done. In some ways Friday afternoon is the most productive time of the week. This afternoon, I think I'll write a new construction specification section. There's a certain product for permanent erosion control that we use some, but for which we don't have a decent construction spec. Yesterday I saw a competing product advertised in Erosion Control magazine. I think I can produce a pretty good spec section in that time. That would be writing. I like that.

Tonight I may just read. I should write, I know. I should decide what to do next. Documenting America needs some editing, and it would be nice to have that ready to go about the same time as the permanent cover comes in. That could be any day now. In Front of Fifty Thousand Screaming People needs to be finished. Lots of work there, and I've been thinking about it lately. Also of late I've had a desire to get back into my Harmony of the Gospels and finish the passage notes and the appendixes, as well as correct a few typos. That's a non-commercial project, and so hard to justify from a career standpoint, but it's enjoyable, so I may go in that direction for a while.

Also among miscellaneous tasks is the article I have under contract for Buildipedia. I'd like to get that mostly written this weekend, well ahead of the next Thursday deadline. And, abstracts for next year's Environmental Connections conference in Vegas are due next Friday. I have three that need work.

So my writing and work lives are really both in miscellaneous states right now. At least it's raining today. Glorious rain, that shuts down construction sites and prevents noon walks, that fills ditches and detention ponds and creates floodplains. How it always lifts my spirits. Now if it will just rain tomorrow and allow me to do something other than clean the gutter helmets.

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