Headed to SnoFest (T-219)

6 weekends -> 6 snowstorms. That’s gotta be a record.

Literally, every weekend we get snow – it’s nowhere near as heavy as it was the first two weekends, but without fail, we’ll get a few inches of snow each weekend. Meanwhile, the entire rest of the week is usually sunny and clear, although frickin’ cold. I must say though that it’s nice to see the rest of the midwest and Texas getting all sorts of snow and cold weather too. I’m glad Colorado was able to spread on the wealth to the rest of you guys.

Anyways, yes, it’s been a few weeks or so since I’ve updated and I just wanted to chime in with what has been going on before heading to SnoFest this weekend up at Keystone. SnoFest is this huge weekend party at Keystone resort wherein all the Colorado Springs’ military base personnel get together and take over the mountain (basically). It’s an excuse to give us another day off (yep, we get this Friday off meaning I haven’t worked an actual ‘full’ work week in literally two months) and to go skiing for an entire weekend. It should be good times, and about 9 of us have rented a very nice condo to live and party in – so that should be fun, and here’s hoping for no drama. I’ll post pics (of course) when I return.

So like I said, it’s been pretty much blah at work – so not much to talk about there. Oh wait, I guess there is some interesting news that developed last week that both thrilled and bummed me out. Part I of the information is that in March, the deputy squadron commander is going to be taking sick leave in order to have surgery. In the meantime, I will be stepping in as deputy Squadron CC!! For an entire month. Whoa! Finding out this information was pretty cool news – because it gives me a chance to help get the squadron back on track as the current commander is seriously in need of help. I obviously can’t go into as much as I’d like on this website, as that damn UCMJ is always there with the key to Leavenworth, but let’s just say she’s not doing that great of a job here. So I was stoked about that news. I’ll get my shot at being almost a squadron commander before getting out – sweet. But then the other shoe dropped the next day, as I heard that initial news through unofficial channels. When I was told it officially, I also was told that I would NOT be coming back as flight commander in April when the deputy commander returns. At all. Instead, my current deputy, Melissa, who puts Captain rank on in May, will take over for good once I leave in late February. I’m not thrilled about this news for two main reasons: first, I really like being flight CC – that’s been the only thing that has made this assignment worth having. So not returning to this is kinda shocking, as I wasn’t mentally prepared to have to say goodbye to that post this early. I had figured I’d be flight cc until the summer or so…WRONG! Second, that means I pretty much have no real job from April to the end of August. Allegedly I become ‘Special Project’ officer, basically meaning that whatever the commanders don’t want to deal with, I get to. In my mind, this new job means I come in at 0900 and leave at 1500 (3pm). I’m just sayin’.

So that’s the work fun. I hope the month of March doesn’t suck too much.

In other news, I’ve been spending money like it’s going out of style. Last week I went to Men’s Wearhouse and bought my first-ever suit. I knew I’d need one to interview with and potentially work in depending on the next job I’d get, and I have never owned a true suit before. It’s a pretty sharp suit, and one day when I actually put the whole thing on, I’ll take some pics to show off the new threads. I also bought some sweet shirts and ties as well as a new pair of loafers, and all in all dropped a load of cash on it, but it’s definitely an investment. I then bought an iPod finally after having resisted for soooooo long. I just got tired of how iPod-centric all the electronics are nowadays – everything’s a stereo plus an iPod-dock – but you can never plug in directly any other type of MP3 player. Plus, you really can’t beat how the iPod interface is – it’s such a clean and efficient way to navigate through your music. My Rio Carbon was such a bitch to use because it took forever to get to your music, especially if you had a lot of it. But my new 80GB black iPod is so awesome and I don’t regret finally upgrading. Now I can get all those cool iPod toys too. I also went and bought some new winter clothes up in Denver and down here in the Springs, including a very sweet long black overcoat. Men’s Wearhouse wanted to sell me a cashmere one for $500 (on sale from $800), and while I’d love to have bought it, that was just a bit much for me at the time. So I went to Burlington Coat Factory and bought a wool/cashmere blend for $180 that is still quite comfortable and looks pretty damn good on me. It’s great for being a bit more dressy and especially while wearing a suit. In fact, I ended up wearing it when going with my friends to see Mamma Mia this past Sunday at the Pikes Peak Performing Arts Center. I never get tired of that musical apparently. It really is good, and I was impressed at how good the cast was in this touring company version of it. Everybody else I went with liked it too, which is not a surprise. Afterwards, some folks went home, but Jeremy and Melissa and I stayed out and went drinking at Jack Quinn’s Irish Pub just a few steps away. It was a ‘school night’, but I just didn’t care and realized I’d pay the price the next day – so 5 beers later, I was feeling pretty damn good. And amazingly, this Monday I didn’t feel as horrendous as expected. Tired, yes, but not nearly as hungover as I should have been. Yay!

And in one last bit of reporting, I have been working with Bradley-Morris, Inc. What’s Bradley-Morris, Inc. you ask? Well, it’s a company that specializes in placing separating or retiring military officers into corporate America. That’s me! They had a 2-hour seminar last week about just how they work, what you can expect, and to answer any questions people had concerning them. My ‘agent’, Justin, and I have talked a few times since then, and basically I’m stoked about how things are progressing. In June and July, I’ll be headed to some hiring conferences, one in Chicago and one in San Diego. At these conferences, the interviews are already scheduled and planned out, so it’s not as you might be thinking, like a giant convention or something. They have hiring conferences all around the country, but with what I’m interested in doing, Justin seemed to think Chicago and San Diego will be the best bets for successful matches at that time. These are regional conferences, so basically going to Chicago and San Diego means I’m hoping for jobs in those general regions. San Diego would of course be awesome, as it covers all of California and the southwest. Chicago is definitely a region I wasn’t certain about, but thinking about it, I would definitely be up for giving Chicago a try. The unfortunate news I learned though is that Colorado Springs/Denver and San Antonio/Austin are both primarily military/defense-driven economies, and frankly, I don’t want to work in those industries anymore. I’m not shutting myself out of those completely just yet, as if the right opportunity comes up, I will consider it, especially if I can stay here. But that will remain to be seen. So who knows, I may find myself either back in California or perhaps learning a new lifestyle, Chicago-style. That’s a whole lotta speculation in this paragraph, admittedly. In the meantime, I am confronted with the foundation-level tasks of creating a resume, compiling references, creating a ‘Hobie Barnes is wonderful’ book with all my OPRs, decorations, etc in it, and just getting myself competitive to be hired. Which leads to a question to all you out there: if you have some jobs opening up where you work, no matter the industry, hook a Hobie up and let me know!

Oh yeah, on a 24 Note – how freaking good has this season been so far? Jack kills Curtis! A suitcase nuke takes out Valencia (what happened to Six Flags Magic Mountain?)! The ultimate bad-guy overseer from last season was Jack’s Brother! Jack is REALLY pissed at his brother! Wayne Palmer sucks as a president!

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