Monday, August 22, 2005

Step 6 -- Goto work, so you can pay your bills

First day at Google. I expect some confusion since I received an email last Wednesday asking me when I was starting. I originally was supposed to start on Sept 6, but I moved up the date. I figured 2.5 months of vacation should be enough, even for me. Time to get some work done. I would have responded to the email, except I was in LA having too much fun. I didn't even think to look at email.

So I arrive and sure enough my name is not on the list. The receptionist says don't worry about it, I'll add you to a list and they can deal with it later. Damn, that was too easy. I get my picture taken for a badge. Man, haven't had one of those for quite a while. I'm supposedly in one system, but not in another. So they can't decide if I exist or not. Better than the guy I sat next to in orientation who really didn't exist. But he still got to enjoy all the "fun". (Later he found out he did exist and got his badge too.)

We go to setup our passwords. Since I'm not in the write system, they fix the problem and tell me to setup the password later. It didn't matter at this point, since there weren't enough computers for me in the orientation room anyways. I just sat in the back with a dumb look on my face like I always do.

We go to lunch. I must say, I'm really disappointed. I keep hearing about how awesome the food is and how you can get 3 meals a day for free! (Yeah, yeah, there's no such thing as a free lunch, but I ask you, what about breakfast and dinner, huh?) So we get lunch. The food was really good, better than most restaurants. But there's way too many choices. I'm assuming all are as good as the next. It sucks to have all that food there and you have to limit yourself to only a few options. Dinner was just as good.

Orientation lasted most of the day. Lots of interesting people there, but I only got to meet a few so far.

At the end of orientation, I call the help desk to setup my password. That takes a bit, seems there are still problems. My machine arrived only 10 minutes before I did, which is apparently not good by Google standards. Most companies would love to have the apparent efficiency and organization I've seen so far. After some delay, I get a password, but my machine isn't in another database, so that's gotta get done. That gets done, but won't be ready for a while, so that was when I left for dinner.

Tomorrow, I'm going to ride my bike to work for the first time. We'll see how that works. (Unless I get lazy and this is the last entry. :-) )

Oh!!! I completely forgot about the toilets. Now I admit I ain't the sharpest tool in the shed, but how the hell do you work those things. It's got way too many controls. I was afraid of pushing the wrong button and getting squirted in the face. Americans should never use a bidet unless they really know what they are doing. I thought it would flush automagically. I waited and waited, but nothing happened. I did make sure to move out of the way of the IR sensor, in case you think I'm totally losing it. I finally pushed the button at the top. Imagine that, a toilet that flushes manually. Most other toilets I found in the buildings don't have all this fancy shmansy crap. Even I can work them. I just get up and they flush by themselves. I can do that!)

I forgot the funniest and most embarrassing story of the whole day. I was so nervous and had so much energy that I peed all over myself. I started laughing at the urinal and I'm sure everyone around was wondering what that wacko was thinking. Ok, it didn't really happen, but while I was standing at the urinal I thought that would be incredibly funny if it did.

One of the great benefits of being indoctrinated into old fartdom is that there's no need for nervousness. I was very comfortable the whole time (except after lunch since I drank too much and there was an interminable cycle of people telling us one thing or another that I'm sure was very important. But I had more important things on my mind, like making sure that my bladder didn't explode raining yellow droplets on everyone.) I stopped waiting for a break and just left. Of course, this episode was after my image of creating a Picasso on my pants leg.

I also didn't try to remember one bit of information. I know there's going to be way too much to remember. Easier to not try. I'll learn what I need to learn later.

It was a very enjoyable day.

Just in case, for those of you wondering, no I didn't wear a holy shirt (ie, shirt with holes). Well, maybe one or two small ones, and I think there was a stain too. But it was a newer shirt (ie, definitely than 10 years old, maybe less than 5). [It was the shirt with all the kiwis on it. I'm sure my mom will tell me exactly how old it is, since she was the one who got it for me when she went to New Zealand. Give 180,000 miles and get a couple of shirts.]

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