Yesterday was a more social July 4th than I’ve had in a while, and overall a pretty good one at that. tugrik grilled hamburgers and hot dogs for lunch; Skorzy was still in town, and Reality Fox and Frang came over (with alcohol and weird Japanese food products, as is tradition—clam jerky?). While later in the day I retreated a bit to antisocial stereotype, sitting in the living room on the laptop (like I am now), I observed the new tradition of detonating lemons with big firecrackers.
I wasn’t sure what plans were—there had been talk of going to see a movie, which I probably would have passed on—and I’d started to think about sneaking off to Morgan Hill to watch their fireworks, but it turned out they were thinking of an expedition to downtown San Jose to watch the fireworks there. So, I went along via light rail to join the mass of people in the Guadalupe River Park; we found seats along the river itself, relatively uncrowded but still with a great view of the fireworks when they went off.
After the fireworks, people decided to go to Denny’s for a late night dinner.
Me: So I am going to Denny’s for my sins?
Tugrik: No, you are going to Denny’s for your country.
I had Denny’s version of scattered and smothered hash browns—covered with country gravy, onions and cheddar cheese. Not as good as Waffle House’s ode to excess (topped with onions, cheddar, diced ham, diced tomatoes, diced jalapenos and chili), but quite acceptable as a cheap, late-night, all-American artery clogger.
So. I’m working on my subcontracting project, although in part I’m waiting for feedback. I do have a “work on this when you’re out of other things” document, though, which I’ll attend to this afternoon. With some mild trepidation I’ve re-activated my résumé on Monster.com, bumping the freelance catchall position up to “10/2002—Present” (it’s true, after all, even if the Cisco and Global Locate contracts were full-time during that period and get their own separate listings). I’m going to start quietly advertising editing services again shortly; I have a simple iWeb-built static site ready to go, and using iBiz, an invoicing program designed for consultants that I’d actually bought a couple years ago, I should be able to keep track of just how much I’ll need to take out for taxes. (So far this year I haven’t made enough to worry about this, but it won’t take very much before I’ll need to start.)
Why mild trepidation? Simply put, I’m finding I rather like the idea of working at home as compared to working in an office. As long as I get my work done in a timely fashion, the conditions under which I’m doing them—for instance, sitting on the couch, taking breaks at completely random times to write LiveJournal posts—are immaterial. It’s said that most people only work productively five or six hours every day; given my druthers, I’ll spread that out over twelve or more hours, rather than eight, and at the office this tends to manifest itself as me failing to look busy, even if I am in fact getting work done. I also prefer to work on concrete tasks: give me as much latitude in getting to a goal as you’re comfortable with, but give me a goal. This is again something that freelance work is good for, although a lot of my worries about financial management in that approach come to the forefront. (I really, really prefer having an employer handle the taxes.)
Well. Speaking of distraction and spreading out work, it’s time to get lunch and then back to said subcontracting. My last two paychecks, both for short weeks (before and after Anthrocon), haven’t arrived yet, and are both being stopped and recut—so I’m not getting that final money until Tuesday, more than likely. Hopefully by next week I’ll find out if I’m going to get unemployment benefits or not, and I’ll have tracked down “missing” money in a couple accounts I’ve managed to lose contact with over the years.