Coffee and Whiteboard Markers

Hmmm. I’m not sure about the new header; I tried to change the theme colors to not-green but that wasn’t really an option.

So. This has been a good week. For example: Yesterday I left work early (I had overtime from other days) and went to a kind of welcome-back-Expedition-16 thing at JSC. And I shook hands with Peggy Whitson. Yeah. And on Tuesday I went to a Bible study small group that was pretty awesome, and today I made a coffeecake, just because I needed the complete excess of sugar and because I could. I haven’t had a decent oven for almost a year.

In terms of work, it’s been going pretty swimmingly. Since this is my first week, I’ve just been reading through a lot of specs and PowerPoints – my colleagues joke that they’re actually just PowerPoint engineers – and getting vaguely familiarized with all the components that are being integrated into just this one subsystem. Which depends on a whole bunch of other subsystems, and so on and so forth. This is a massive, massive project. You could describe it in terms of, say, Senior Design, but about twenty orders of magnitude higher.

My colleagues are pretty friendly and awesome – and really busy. Apparently I, too, shall shortly be very busy. That’s okay. One nice thing about all the cubicles is that random people stop by and talk for a bit before going on – I guess that one could say it ‘promotes communication’. And ‘social networking’ is the post-college way of describing making new friends. The department/team is kind of a cross between a computer lab, an office, and Jurassic Park (the floor shakes significantly whenever anybody walks by).

One really nice thing is that I’m going to be able to select my own mini-project, within reason. After getting an idea of what was going on, I asked for one dealing with either SA mechanisms or heat transfer (Dr. B would be so happy). And today I got to go on-site and do some actual useful work, even if it was just entering data into a really touchy database. I managed not to delete the database or significant portions of it, so I say I did well.

Oh, and did I mention I have a cubicle? I have mixed feelings about that. Yes, it’s my own space and I can bring in my posters and pictures and spaceship models. But it’s an honest-to-goodness cubicle. I’m like one of those freaky people who work in offices. Fortunately I don’t stare at a computer all day … just most of it.

My summer to-do list is building up, also. A brief taste: church, frisbee, summer cru, finish the NaNo I started and accomplished but didn’t finish, GRE, grad school search, catch up on BSG and SG, and other really random projects.

Here’s part of a conversation for you – it will also double as the quote(s) of the day:

Colleague 1: “Yeah, I walked in on my first day of work and I was like, ‘Yeah, this place smells like engineers.”

Colleague 2: “It smells nice downstairs, where the receptionist is. And [the admin on our floor] has plants.”

Colleague 1: “No, it smells like engineers.”

Me: “Why, what do engineers smell like? Coffee and whiteboard markers?”

Colleague 1: “Yeah, pretty much.”

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One thought on “Coffee and Whiteboard Markers

  1. Yeeeeees, finish NaNoWriMo novel! You left Melda in horrible suspense. Bad Valera. I’m hoping to do some serious writing over the summer too 🙂

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