Monday, September 26, 2016

Education for MY future (ROUGH DRAFT)

Ever feel like nothing ever quite goes your way? Lord knows I've felt like that a LOT since graduating college in 2008. My feelings on it all can best be described by some of the lyrics of the classic Judas Priest song Breaking the Law...

So much for the golden future I can't even start...I've had every promise broken, there's anger in my heart!!! You don't know what it's like, you don't have a clue... If you did, you'd find yourselves doing the same thing too!!!

There has been a lot of anger over how so many things have not turned out quite the way I hoped in my adult life. ITT, the Army, the Insurance Adjusting business... However, as I've hinted on my Facebook page for months now, that will change very soon. And it's gonna change by me finally using my VA education benefits to return to school. I am going back to college for a Bachelor's in Computer Science.

The specialty in that major hasn't been decided yet. That's something you do later on in the course of study. However, I think I'll be pursuing Cyber-security since there is ALWAYS a lot of work in that field. I was originally considering an Education degree so I could become a Teacher but, I changed my mind on that one. Just getting some damned information on how to pursue that course was so infuriating that I decided to go with my natural inclinations instead. Tech is where I belong.

I was also thinking about getting some kind of Master's but, my Bachelor's from ITT had a completely different accreditation service than my new school, the University of New Orleans. So, I have to start over as an Undergraduate again. I can't say I'm surprised. Life has already made me start over at zero several times in the last 10 years. This time though, Uncle Sam is picking up the tab so, I really don't care.

It's funny because it's true...

However, getting this far was certainly a bit of a misadventure. And I guess it all started the first time I went to college from 2004 through 2008...


I chose the title of this blog because 'Education for the future' was the advertising slogan that ITT used back when I first went there in 2004. That was also a time when it was still a legitimate institution. Now, I'm probably laughed at by any potential employer that sees that school listed on my Resume. Despite all that work that went into college for 4 years, I was immediately set back at Zero after graduating in 2008. Back then, it was because of the bad economic situation. Now, it's because the business people that ran ITT ran that school into the ground.

I worked so hard in college that first time around, trying to accomplish a dream of becoming a game designer. It didn't take long after graduation to realize that wasn't going to happen. That was the first time life made me start over at zero. Or, maybe I should say -52,000 since I had $52,000 worth of student loans that needed to be repaid ASAP. Thankfully, they are almost all gone now.

Now, 9 years later, I have all but $7,000 (maybe less) of the loans paid off. The rest will be gone sometime in the next 2 or 3 years, if everything goes according to plan. Maybe sooner if I can afford to put some money away to pay off large chunks at once but, that isn't likely...  (And I'm sure that I said something like that about 2 or 3 years ago as well...)

Anyway, I chose the private sector back then because public universities here in New Orleans were a joke at the time. I didn't think much of community colleges back then either. I didn't even really know what they were. I thought they were just the schools that losers attended. Now, I realize I probably should have went to one of them for something technical instead of those Sierra Bravos @ ITT. Oh well. Lesson learned... At great personal and financial expense...

At least I don't have to worry about people specifically telling me no in job interviews just because of that worthless ITT degree. It's also great that college is being paid for this time by a benefit that I earned instead of loans. I sure wouldn't want to be in the shoes of the kids that ITT messed over when they closed. The Feds had to set up a special program to help them. As if all the problems paying back student loans weren't bad enough for some people back in the 'Great Depression that we're just gonna call a Recession' of 2008.

No matter what the Feds did in 2008, it was still going to be very controversial and only marginally effective at best...

Concerns about Bleeding Heart Liberal professors and the kids that idolize them like false gods...

Bleeding Hearts who are also tenured professors are one of the reasons why I utterly refused to pursue anything in the Humanities, outside of Education degrees. That, and a degree in the Humanities (or any other form of Liberal Arts) just doesn't get you a job. Also, my grades shouldn't be at the mercy of biased ideologues who are pissed that I dared to reject some (or all) of their philosophy and/or worldview. That would be their own fault for actually giving a philosophy like Postmodernism the time of day. 'Feels over Reals' doesn't work in the real world, folks. You cannot simply reject objective reality and substitute your own. Those Commie professors are NOT Doctor Who.

All that being said, I got along quite well with all of my professors at ITT, especially the Bleeding Hearts. One of them even made me his unofficial teaching assistant by paying me to type up his lesson plans and correct his grammatical mistakes. Spelling wasn't one of his gifts.

I doubt strongly that I'm going to have to worry about any hippies among the student body, either. I took a good look around while I was there exploring the UNO campus. With only 1 or 2 exceptions, they all looked quite normal and well-adjusted to me. In fact, they looked downright happy. I think I'll be happy there too since being there puts a smile on my face. And being so focused on STEM these days, that school is essentially one giant Mad Science Laboratory. I think I may have just found my home away from home. :)

However, I know what to do when/if any of the kids try to give me any grief about anything, especially how I'm paying for school this time around...

Or in my case, almost 5 years...

Actually going down to UNO and getting registered, taking placement tests, et al.

I went down to the school for a campus tour and officially submitted my application in October. That process was fairly painless. The school also has the largest library I've ever visited in my life, with the possible exception of the Jefferson Parish Library's main branch in Metairie. They even still had Microfiche there. That on-campus library is also apparently a repository for a lot of government documents so, that's liable to be very useful in the future. Not yet sure how, though...

I walked around the campus on my own for hours, just to re-familiarize myself with the layout of the land. I knew this school fairly well because I went there for a few summer programs for genius kids over 20 years ago. Many things changed but, a lot of them didn't. The Education building is still almost exactly the same. That's where those summer programs took place. I'm sure a lot of the General Education prerequisites will also be taught there.

In addition to my ITT degree not being worth anything to them (which is annoying), I had to take a few placement tests from a serviced called Accuplacer. My old ACT scores from High School wouldn't work anymore since they are only considered good for 5 years. I graduated from High School over 16 years ago now.

There were 2 tests to take: Sentence Structure and Elementary Algebra. The Sentence Structure test was painfully easy. I finished it in 13 minutes and 30 seconds and got a final score of 107. I'm not sure how those tests are graded. However, that score was good enough to test out of the first semester's English class, if desired. The Algebra test though, was more difficult. I had to take that one twice. I needed a minimum score of 65 for that one and got a 68 on the second try. I'll be taking something akin to a remedial math course but, that's okay. I haven't looked at (let alone used) much Algebra for more than 12 years. I could use a refresher course. Thankfully, I can feel my brain starting to re-orient itself to the type of logical thinking required for crunching these fancy numbers. Neuroplasticity for the WIN!

Getting registered for classes was also a bit annoying since I was just directed to a website and told to do it myself without much real instruction. Sounds like I'm dealing with government employees again, huh? Oh well, I'll get used to this new paradigm in fairly short order. I'm actually looking forward to some of the classes I have for this first semester. I think they will be fun. :)

Laughing at my enemies, both real and imagined...

So many jackasses I used to know in the Army are going to be rather incensed when they hear about this latest misadventure of mine. Mostly because it's being funded by their tax dollars.

They'll also be pissed when they discover that the VA will be giving me a living stipend while I'm a full-time college student.

They'll be downright enraged to learn that the stipend and my VA disability check (which I started collecting in April) will cover my monthly living expenses.

The fact that their will also be a small profit after expenses may drive them through the proverbial roof. :P

And just so all of you fools know, I am laughing at you. Your fury and gnashing of teeth is truly Top Kek to me.

Yeah, we're gonna be rollin' around in some of that Donald Trump money really soon, my dudes...

I am laughing at SC, who thought I was about to lose my house and tried to blast my personal business over Facebook in November of 2016. Not only was he completely wrong in his assertions, he also never had any idea what I was really doing in life. Maybe he thought the jokes about being broke were a serious cry for help? I was working and living paycheck-to-paycheck, dumbass. Either way, I'm not selling my house and moving away from New Orleans again. Fuck that shit and fuck YOU too, asshole. You told me on a few occasions that you think you have Asperger's Syndrome. I still say you should go get tested but, for me at least, there is no doubt. That's probably the only way you could have been so clueless. Since when do you go blasting other people's business all over Facebook, numbnuts? Did your parentst not teach you any kind of manners or decorum as a child?

I am also laughing at those two snake in the grass bastards TAB and BKD. Both of whom deserve to rot in the Ninth Inner Circle along with Brutus, Cassius, Judas Iscariot and all other Sierra Bravos who betray their friends. You two apparently thought I was good for nothing, but I can assure you both it's actually the other way around. You two are lucky the Army was willing to employ you. Neither one of you would have much luck in the civilian world because of your tendencies to act like an ASSHOLE. Or, in BKD's case, a fucking degenerate BDSM faggot whose also probably an amoral sociopath. Lord knows the way you treat women is only marginally better than Patrick Bateman from American Psycho. You sick fuck. The way you use them for your own purposes is genuinely horrifying to anyone with a conscience.

I am also laughing at all the shitbag excuses for NCO's that I had to deal with too. They are also lucky that the Army hired them because no one else would. Well, maybe a few sleazy used car dealerships would but, that's not really an improvement... The less I have to say about any of them, the better. I've already beaten that dead horse more than enough.

That shitbag even looks like he might have been an NCO at one time...

Also, I am really having a good laugh at that shitbag BPC, who thought he was somehow going to shame me back into the Army after I left. And when that failed, he tried to cyberstalk me. Boy, did that fail. He might even slit his wrists over the fact that I got the VA to pay for college and provide me a lifelong disability check. Serves you right too, Cocksucker. I normally would consider suicide to be awful. However, in your case, I wouldn't lose even one minute of sleep.

Fuck YOU, BPC. And not in a way that your Homosexual ass might enjoy!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Random thoughts for 17 September 2016

0.) Happy Constitution Day!!!

1.) There has been a disturbance in The Force as of late...

For reasons I still don't fully understand, I have been a lot more attracted to blondes these past 2 weeks than usual. I suspect this has something to do with 2 hot blonde actresses that I like (i.e. Jennifer Lawrence and Melissa Benoist, the actress that plays the lead role in Supergirl) and that cute little 24 year-old nursing student that's my usual trainer at the gym.

2.) Make no mistake though, I am still just as obsessed with Redheads as ever. If Leanna Decker came to me and begged me to make her a happy wife and mother, I wouldn't say no. ;)

3.) I recently started a new job as a daily claims adjuster for an Independent Adjuster firm that I worked for in the past. So far, I'm just handling claims that people make against the local electric company. Most of them are easy denials but, I still give them full consideration. That way, when the claimant gets the denial, they can't say that I didn't even try to be fair to them.

I sure do hope this job goes well. I'm tired of being only sporadically employed and CONSTANTLY struggling to pay the bills...

Also, this job keeps me here at home. I don't just mean New Orleans I mean at home, handling the claims over the phone and internet with a laptop the company gave me. That ought to significantly cut down on my travel costs... :P

4.) Why is Firefox being such a crackhead? Am I going to have to get a new browser that DOESN'T suddenly take up all the system resources and freeze? Who cares if I have 20 tabs open (with most of them being YouTube videos) it should NOT be crashing in this modern age of superior open-source programming... *smh*

5.) No, I am not switching to Chrome. Google always wants me to sign into that shit and it is often just as much of a memory hog as Firefox. Sometimes much more depending on how many tabs you have open at once.*

* = Chrome has each tab run as its own process in Windows. This was meant to keep the whole browser from crashing if one freezes up for some reason. It doesn't always work well.

6.) I wonder if Opera would be worthwhile as a new main browser? Is it even still around? I know Nintendo uses Opera software for the web browsers in the Wii, Wii U and 3DS platforms. Would that be enough to keep them alive?

7.) Adobe Flash sucks. It should be replaced with HTML5 by ANYONE running an active website. I have spoken.

8.) I found an interesting article via Facebook tonight. It's about a Battalion commander getting removed for violating the Sexual Harassment and Equal Opportunity regulations.

"The investigation found Higgins committed multiple violations of the Army’s Sexual Harassment and Equal Opportunity regulations and policies, created a hostile work environment, and failed to treat subordinates with dignity and respect, according to the statement from the 1st Armored Division.

Officials from the 1st Armored Division later clarified that the Sexual Harassment policy violations cited in the investigation stemmed from inappropriate comments that created a hostile work environment, and there were no allegations of any inappropriate physical contact.

So, an old-school officer makes a few sex jokes and he gets fired... Okay...

I could swear that I've read about this dude somewhere before, years ago while I was still in the Army. The piece was essentially a biography of the guy in question, saying he was one of the most aggressive commanders we had in Afghanistan.

So, what really happened? Were the comments really that bad or is this a case of Political Correctness running amok? Either way, I think we are not being told the whole story.

9.) Found out that the new Star Trek show is being delayed until May.

I'm not upset by this delay at all. It will give them a chance to create a MUCH better product than what I've seen so far. Also, they didn't even have more than 3 or 4 scripts finished as of August. Getting a season's worth of episodes done in just 4 months would have been next to impossible.

10.) Haven't seen or heard anything out of that stalking shitbag in a while. I guess he got the message and took it to heart. Good for him.

11.) Speaking of Gingers that supposedly lack souls... I was thinking about the little red-haired girl from Korea again a few weeks ago. I have come to the conclusion that she was not in her right mind back in those days. Don't know if she got any better since I left her behind 5 years ago now but, I sure hope she did. Otherwise, her life is really going to suck in so many different ways.

12.) About talking point number 1... I recently watched all 20 episodes of the new Supergirl series on Netflix. I'm glad it's being renewed for a second season. I hope being moved from CBS to The CW doesn't kill its ratings like changes in time slot often kill a show's ratings.

13.) Bible Study started at church again this past Tuesday, this time studying the Acts of the Apostles. (Often referred to as 'the Book of Acts'). Straight away, it's proven insightful by explaining what 'Witnessing' actually meant.

It's definitely not the proselytizing, bible-thumping insanity from various religious fanatics that only drive people away from God. It's just answering questions about God, Jesus, the Bible, et al. whenever someone asks you about the subject. So, it's looks like I was witnessing many times over the years without ever being aware of the fact. Forget about mysterious ways, sometimes God works in some really low-key, seemingly sneaky ways. It's just a subliminal form of word-of-mouth advertising... How interesting...

14.) Why do the local Rock stations insist on cutting out about 15-30 seconds from the Ozzy Osbourne song No more tears? Even worse, why does it have to be from Zakk Wylde's guitar solo?! That is fucking BULLSHIT!!! Even the video on Ozzy's official YouTube page does it... Whisky Tango Foxtrot?!

15.) Ya know what else is awesome about working from home most of the time? I now have a LOT more free time. Unlike those damned call centers, I'm only expected to work 40 hours a week most of the time, as opposed to 60 hours. I can finally play video games on a regular basis again! Awesome!!! :)

That's all for now...

- Lord Publius