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January 4th, 2008

For the most part, the trip up to Boston (actually, Andover) went exceedingly well. As far as business trips go, I really cannot complain about how this one went. Yes, the bosses worked us like cheap slave labor (welcome to the world of salaried, exempt from overtime pay) with late hours, but they also fed us really well by buying us really good food at very nice restaurants. Some highlights from the trip:

  • Boston has one of the best radio stations I ever heard: Mike FM. I think it's the same thing as Jack FM in Baltimore, but I'm not sure -- especially since Mike's playlist seems to have a bit more variety. However, I can't be 100% sure of that as I haven't had a working radio in my car for over six months now.
  • I had an honest-to-God Spinal Tap moment during my first afternoon here. One of the people in Major Defense Contractor's Andover location was showing us around the facilities when she got lost trying to show us where the vending machines were. In her defense, she did mention that she rarely uses them herself, but that doesn't excuse the fact that we passed by a few different locations no less than three times each. When that started happening, I was just imagining myself lost in the basement of a Cleveland-area concert hall with the rest of a clueless band, thus prompting me to actually raise my right hand in the sign of the devil and say, with more volume and enthusiasm than I really should have, "Rock on Cleveland!"
  • The new group which I work with has an amazing sense of humor. I haven't laughed so much, so consistently on the job in a long, long time. The only down side is that my new group is a visit from human resources just waiting to happen. By yesterday afternoon, I lost count of the technically inappropriate jokes, zingers and put-downs I heard from the others in my group. No comment on the number that came out of my mouth.
  • While here, I found out that my new position is actually a promotion and I got a raise -- and a really nice one at that. Not a bad way at all to start out the new year.
  • In the week proceeding my trip up here, I made my once-a-decade attempt to grow a beard. It ended in the same abject failure that my last attempt did, and the morning I departed from Dulles Airport I shaved off the pathetic facial growth that had appeared on my checks and under my chin. By the evening of my arrival, I was sorely regretting my decision. I would have appreciated every one of those hair follicles both my evenings here. To quote Lewis Black for the second time this week, the weather was beautiful... if you had fur on your nuts.
  • The only real downside to the visit has been getting out of Boston. We arrived at Logan at 3:00 for a 4:30. As you can see by the time-stamp on this entry, I've now been here for over 2½ hours. The good news is that there is Wi-Fi available (obviously); the bad news is that it costs $7.99 for day pass. I actually decided it was worth it, and it's possibly the best spent money coming out of my own pocket in recent memory. The time flies much more quickly when you can email, read LJ and make your own posts.
Unfortunately, I didn't make as many notes as I should have over the past few days, so some memorable moments are now lost. As I always write in situations like this, I'll try to my best to post about them when I remember about them in the future.

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