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OT : Bad week

by zakzebrowski (Curate)
on Feb 13, 2004 at 02:46 UTC ( #328714=perlmeditation: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


I'm sitting here wondering if anyone else, aside from me, has been having a bad week, and things that perl programmers do to get themselves into a better mood. I've done some really stupid things this week, and with valentines day coming up, and not having a valentine, I'm in a bad mood. My only realy enjoyment has been to persue some interesiting modules (Acme::Stegno, for example) and watching the office on DVD... Any recommendations on how to get in a better mood?


Zak - the office

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: OT : Bad week
by Vautrin (Hermit) on Feb 13, 2004 at 03:46 UTC
    use strict; use warnings; package GoodWeek; { sub create { my $week = shift (@_); bless { beer => 'plenty', work => 'reading perl monks', pager => 'wonderfully silent', code => 'bug free', }, $week; } 1; }

    Want to support the EFF and FSF by buying cool stuff? Click here.
Re: OT : Bad week
by kvale (Monsignor) on Feb 13, 2004 at 04:29 UTC
    I like to go running to blow off steam. It is hard to be pissed off and frustrated when you are physically exhausted with endorphins coursing through your body. All the extra oxygen to the brain sometimes helps in squashing software problems.


      Absolutely. I'm into mountain biking -- lately, it's been a lot of night riding on local singletrack. One of my fellow riders said "What is it about programmers that makes them want to hurl themselves into trees in the dark?". The answer, of course, is stress. 85% of us are software developers.

      I don't feel like Googling, but there are some good studies that "runner's high" (which bikers also get) might produce effects similar to marijuana smoking (aka THC). I don't do drugs, but I do bike :)

      Anyhow, monitors (esp. CRT's), desk chairs, and endless telecoms don't work well for me. I have to get outside and play.

      Of course, it's been raining llamas and camels (err, does the idiom "raining cats and dogs" translate well internationally? If not, sorry!) that makes it a bad week. Time to start hitting the indoor pools or something, I guess.

      Beer helps too :) (but no I have not tried any of blue_cowdawg's "fine Belgian style ales")

Re: OT : Bad week
by dws (Chancellor) on Feb 13, 2004 at 06:59 UTC
    Any recommendations on how to get in a better mood?

    • Take a long walk in the Big Blue Room when the Day Star is out.
    • Borrow a friend's puppy for the day.
    • Get a good night's sleep x 3.
    • Go out for Dim Sum with some friends.
Re: OT : Bad week
by rkg (Hermit) on Feb 13, 2004 at 05:34 UTC
    <my bad week>

    see rkg set up cvs incorrectly.

    watch rkg copy directories incorrectly, moving cvs data along too.

    observe rkg issue an cvs -update command incorrectly.

    marvel as cvs obliterates working code.

    hear rkg's yelp of agony.

    watch with amazement as rkg stabs mindlessly at cvs try to retrieve working code.

    </my bad week>


    zakzebrowski, for what it is worth, my suggested method of dealing with bad days to leave work and swim laps until your head clears.

    happy ending: of course all the code was in CVS somewhere, buried back a few versions, and rkg was able to get it back, but darn it took too long. so now my (belated) new year's resolution is to read the cvs manual....

      Oh yes, CVS can provide no end to entertaining weirdness. My first use (and first big mistake) with CVS is documented for the world to see here on SourceForge. I managed to accidently upload a chunk of my home directory (including GnuPG keys) before I realized what I had done and shut it off. I then got my first lesson in how well CVS supports deleting files.

      : () { :|:& };:

      Note: All code is untested, unless otherwise stated

        CVS lets you delete but you still have a copy in the Attic.
Re: OT : Bad week
by hardburn (Abbot) on Feb 13, 2004 at 06:28 UTC

    As long as we're venting . . .

    I've been learning to program for the AS400 at work. It's not technically Big Iron, but it derives from systems that are. Most of the programming languages and data formats were designed back when punchcards were all the rage, and it shows. You get people writing books about RPG (one of the big languages on the system) who have been doing this since 1977 and write things like this:

    Some people think C is a brief language. Actually, RPG is the briefest of all high level languages.

    Which just goes to show that experiance does not imply actual thinking ability. These sad sobs actually think they're becoming modern because they can write "free form" code, as opposed to being forced to put certain data in certain text columns (for instance, a comment in RPG is denoted by putting a '*' in column 16 (IIRC)). Such a move is clearly bringing the platform into the 1980's. At least, it will once IBM works out the bugs in the free-form interpreter.

    I know my company has some Java on there already, and I might actually write some Java code instead of RPG. Whatever you might say about Java, it'd be an improvement over the hoard of other languages on this beast that don't belong on this side of 1985.

    I've read that perl will compile on this thing, but I'm not sure how well the various database formats are supported. There is a DBD::DB2 driver, but my company isn't currently using DB2. I'm not sure what the internal formats used for db works, but I'll bet they're propreitary.

    What I am most facinated by on this thing is the clash of cultures. IBM (back in the '50s) was the role model for American buisness--uptight, everyone wearing the exact same suit, etc. I come from a programming background largely influnced by modern tech culture--free-wheeling, churn out code, hack it, hack it good, etc. It'll be interesting to see this play out.

    : () { :|:& };:

    Note: All code is untested, unless otherwise stated

Re: OT : Bad week
by Popcorn Dave (Abbot) on Feb 13, 2004 at 05:19 UTC
    My faorite method is to put on the loudest thrashiest punk rock I have in my collection and play it as loud as I can. Usually takes about 10 minutes of thrashing around and I forget about whatever was pissing me off.

    Well actually my *favorite* method is to do that on the freeway at (according to my wife) unsafe speeds, but thrashing around the room is safer.

    There's something about the loud music that just takes out all my negativity.

    Your mileage may vary :)

    There is no emoticon for what I'm feeling now.

      After those ten minutes it's probably your neighbours who's pissed off instead. Though sometimes that's what makes your day.

      Always code as if the guy who ends up maintaining your code will be a violent psychopath who knows where you live.
         -- Rick Osborne

      Edit by castaway: Closed small tag in signature

        Not as of yet - well at least the police haven't showed up to tell me to turn it down. ;)

        There is no emoticon for what I'm feeling now.

Re: OT : Bad week
by Art_XIV (Hermit) on Feb 13, 2004 at 15:51 UTC

    Going home and playing/rough-housing with my three year old son never fails to put me in a better mood, no matter how bad a day I've had.

    Art_XIV's advice for the love-lorn Perl programmer:

    As far as potential valentines go, you have to remember that love is like playing cards - you keep losing until you win. The catch is that you have to keep trying. If you are rejected, just consider it THEIR loss. It worked for me. :)

    Few potential valentines are going to be impressed by the number and/or quality of your CPAN modules, and that's that. Most developer-geeks come in the too scrawny or too fat variety. They tend to be socially awkward, out of contact with their own emotions, and spend wayyy too much time in odd activities like programming (even when they don't have to!!!)/gaming/etc. Most are sarcastic smart-asses. Worst of all, they tend to be mostly/completely oblivious to the romantic 'signals' that others put out.

    But never fear, Geeks Need Love Too, and you just have to trust that there are enough potential partners out there that appreciate intelligence, honesty, and loyalty. Even the most wretchedly introverted programmer-geeks manage to find mates on a regular basis, and even manage to breed.

    Once you have one that's interested, do actually listen to your valentine when they want to talk, and try hard to understand what is being said. Respond appropriately and sincerely, even though this is a lot of work (lots harder than even XS or JAPHs) and can be irritatingly confusing at times. This is a must.

    Take the passion that you put into your code and apply it to your valentine on a regular basis. They'll love you for it.

    Hanlon's Razor - "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity"

      "Few potential valentines are going to be impressed by the number and/or quality of your CPAN modules, and that's that."

      WHAT?!?! What have I been writing all this code for, if not to get some action? Don't they understand that my modules are a sign of virility? Is that why my wife's eyes glaze over when I start talking about refactoring?

      "Take the passion that you put into your code and apply it to your valentine on a regular basis."

      Just don't send them Valentines that look like this

      my $val = Valentine->new(); print qq(I love you!\n) if ($val->{'me'} + $val->{'you'} == 1);

      An insightful post Art_XIV. ++

Re: OT : Bad week
by coreolyn (Parson) on Feb 13, 2004 at 12:29 UTC

    Hmmm... You could start a node out on PerlMonks get it front paged and collect a whole mess of XP from understanding monks for no good reason... other than you are not alone hmmm...

    And for you 'sticklers' for propriety.. It's valentines day, which generally sucks for a whole lot of people.


      Thanks for everyone's reply. I wasn't expecting this post to get frontpaged because it is so off topic, but I'm overwhelemed by the support of everyone today. (I was just hoping for a post of encouragement.) It has warmed my heart and I will endever to be in a better mood, using some of the suggestions above.

      All, thanks.

      Zak - the office
Re: OT : Bad week
by Anonymous Monk on Feb 13, 2004 at 06:24 UTC
    I'd suggest trying something new. Exploring new modules is a possibility, but go further and explore a new language: Ruby is a nice, and Io would make for a good weekend exploration.
Re: OT : Bad week
by artist (Parson) on Feb 13, 2004 at 05:32 UTC
    Increase the periods of your oxgygen intake.
Re: OT : Bad week
by jeffa (Bishop) on Feb 13, 2004 at 18:32 UTC

    Pure physical exercise! There is nothing like taking those aggressions out on a punching bag! Just don't wear yourself out too much that you get sick. If, like me, you don't have a punching bag ... throwing some air punches and kicks helps, but just be sure not to over-extend your punch or kick because there is nothing to stop the momentum.

    Got a bicycle? Go out and ride for about an hour if you can. But of course, being at work hampers such ... which is why regular exercise is so important, especially for us geeks that sit in front of a monitor 8 hours a day.

    And i hope next week is better for you. :)


    (the triplet paradiddle with high-hat)
Re: OT : Bad week
by hding (Chaplain) on Feb 13, 2004 at 12:41 UTC
    Spend a couple of hours picking a banjo.
Re: OT : Bad week
by Anonymous Monk on Feb 13, 2004 at 07:26 UTC
    Go to a strip bar or just a stripper (or an escort ).
Re: OT : Bad week
by jweed (Chaplain) on Feb 13, 2004 at 08:32 UTC
    My bad week involved trying to get the 2.6 kernel working. I simply cannot compile it to my liking. Gah!

    I feel your pain.

    Code is (almost) always untested.
Re: OT : Bad week
by bwelch (Curate) on Feb 13, 2004 at 16:03 UTC
    A great solution I've found is to do volunteer work. Do free tech support and development for some charity group, or find a non-tech volunteer job. High reward, low stress effort, people appreciate you, and sometimes you make good friends and contacts.
      This is probably a good idea! A girlfriend of mine went on some charity group thing to meet men. She happens to like geek/nerd types and she's tried to date the whole IT dept at her company.


      "The doktor is in."

Re: OT : Bad week
by zentara (Archbishop) on Feb 13, 2004 at 14:40 UTC
    Sometimes just sitting outside will do it, but I mean for at least a few hours. It's amazing the change that occurs after a couple of nights in a tent. Personally, I think it's dirty indoor air that causes it. Stuff like perfumes, disinfectants, mold, etc accumulate indoors, sitting outside cleans it out of the blood stream.

      ...most of the time...

      I just spent five nights camping outside Phoenix, Arizona. The dust was impressive at times. Black booger dusty. I sneezed a lot.

      On the other hand, I'm not really complaining that much. Ten days away from the office (modulo a couple hours on Friday via cell phone) was a nice break, visiting friends, hanging out, drinking good malt whiskey (Scotch and Irish).

Re: OT : Bad week
by sock (Monk) on Feb 14, 2004 at 15:15 UTC
    I have a cat who has come to the conclusion that in or to get attention from me he must physically place himself between me and the moniter. Even then it doesn't always work. Oliver, his name, is very good at forcably removing me from computing stints that extent 10 hour periods by needing food and such. If only i could get him to drink coffee and sit still for 10+ hours at a time.....
    ~ Nick
    Guns don't kill people, ninjas do.
      Coffee + Kitty + Keyboard
      baaaaad kitty baaaaaad kitty
Re: OT : Bad week
by Old_Gray_Bear (Bishop) on Feb 13, 2004 at 19:42 UTC
    I find a variation on the 'take a hike' works for me. I have a puppy. A five year old German Short Hair Pointer 'puppy'. When I have had a really aweful day at work, I go take The Puppy out for a walk. We walk until The Puppy gets tired. That's somewhere around the five-mile mark....

    I Go Back to Sleep, Now.


Re: OT : Bad week
by sth (Priest) on Feb 13, 2004 at 18:54 UTC

    Miller High Life


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