Thursday, November 14, 2002

Watty's been having an interesting week:

Quite apart from the dramas of Monday, there have been more than enough things to keep me exhausted this week:

(Oh, Conor's fine, by the way - apart from some residual bruising, you wouldn't know anything had happened)

So, on Tuesday, I had my appraisal (I'd like to say it was appraisal season; truth is, we're hopelessly late. Such is life with Italians) - which I was actually rather pleased with; not that I thought there would be any major bones of contention, just that my boss and I know each other so well that we tend not to say or do the things we ought to, the things which keep a working relationship going. On Tuesday, we managed to say those things, which was quite a breakthrough. I also finally understood why he's been so grumpy recently - it was what I thought it was, but it was nice to know that it wasn't anything that I'd done.

Which meant that, in turn, I had to do my two guys today. You think it's stressful on the employee side of the desk; you want to try doing two contrasting appraisals in a row. I shall say no more, but it's worth observing that the guys are significantly harder on themselves than I am. This (I think) is actually a good thing - their standards are reasonably high....

There was a perfectly pleasant excursion into Soho last night in the company of PaulWay, jim, I'mNotJohn, and Simons Mith - good company, and I'm sure that there was a round of beers at one point at £1.45 a pint. In central London. The least said about the trek back to Euston past the closed tube stations, the better, I think.

And then there was the air conditioning.

We have bought a large number of servers over the last few months, and our poor old 3kW aircon unit can't cope any more - it's actually warmer in the room than in the rest of the office. So, we ordered up a nice big 10kW unit, and it was due to be installed yesterday; this didn't happen for various, entirely predictable reasons - I don't think that anything actually happens on schedule any more. So, we arranged for it to happen at 7am today; less disruption to the offices, since the guys would have to fiddle about in the roof void and so on. Now, the thing about proper big aircon units is that the condenser needs to go on the roof. So it needs to be of a size which will fit up the stairs to the roof, and more importantly, through the door. The door to the roof of our building is actually more of a hatchway - it's about 75mm square. The salesman came last week, measured up and confidently placed his order. The condenser arrived this morning, and there's no way in the world it's going through that hatch. So we debated the hiring of a crane, and various other more or less bizarre solutions until it was agreed that the contractors would get a window fitter in to remove the whole hatch and frame, take the condenser through (which they did, I have no idea how) and put it back in. All this in high winds and driving rain. I tell you, it's a glamorous life in IT...

Of course, so much time was wasted this morning that the job's still not finished. Perhaps we will have our nice new aircon unit tomorrow.

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