Watts (chipotle) wrote,

Lunch time at the OK Corral

Actually, it's lunch time at "Pete & Shorty's," a tavern here in Tampa with another location in Clearwater, right next to the original Hooter's. It's a recreation of a small-town burger joint and bar, and it has the right feel, mostly--a little too loud, perhaps, and showing just a touch too much coherent design in the Tampa one. (The Clearwater one has no such failing, and indeed looks like it could have been there since the fifties instead of 1997.) I've had a "Loose Meat Pete," kind of like a Sloppy Joe without the sauce--and a bit healthier, since the meat is steamed rather than fried. I make up for this by mixing up a bit of fry sauce for dipping the fries; it's a mix of mayonnaise and mustard. This is something I saw at the Hi-Land Inn in Winchester, Idaho, a little diner that's perhaps not too far off from what Pete & Shorty's emulates.

Two days ago I stayed home sick from NetPoodles. This was a mental health day in disguise. I didn't get a whole lot accomplished, but it didn't hurt things, and I finally had the time to fill out an application with Aquent, a recruiting company specializing in more creative fields (writing, web development, graphic design and the like). I'm hoping my muse will return, at least with some degree of strength. I know that technically I need to just sit down and write a little every day whether it feels like it's "inspired" or not. All too often, though, that means just sitting and staring at the monitor for a while, maybe reshuffling already-written sentences around. I started chapter 4 two months ago.

As predicted a few months ago, I fell off the "wake up early" bandwagon shortly after I started it. Sometimes I still manage it but more often than not the alarm clock goes off early and I snooze for an hour or more. If I'm serious about this, it means going to bed earlier, too. That's always been a challenge for me. I'm considering having that be my "look for other employment" hour, though, since I should ostensibly try to look busier at NetPoodles now that Mafia Tony's wandering around checking to see if the developers are naughty or nice. Apparently on Tuesday he chided a younger developer for being away from his desk too often. This was given as an excuse for letting me go from Totaltape years ago--"you do wonderful work, but it looks bad that you're away from your desk talking to other works so much"--so it's an unsettling development. But predictable. I'd say that eventually they'd figure out that treating programmers like hourly typists (what I basically was at Totaltape, even though I'd written some powerful automation scripts that likely got let go with me) is a bad idea, except that I know that they won't.

Well, it's half past noon as I type this and my lunch break is technically long over. I've made a brief pit stop at Don Pan, a chain of "international bakeries" that, with this single exception, is local to Miami. By "international" they mostly mean "Latin American." Sure, they've thrown on the required eclair and cannoli to look inclusive, but half their lunch menu is arepas, and I'm here for the cafe con leche, something I've found that Cuban sandwich shops do better than coffee shops.

But it's late. Once more into the breach!

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