Apr. 13th, 2012

terriko: (Pi)

The scarf is finished and gifted! As I said in the first post, I wanted to make the scarf for Ken because he's the one who's really carried me through the new seasons of Doctor Who with his enthusiasm, even when my faith in the writers often flagged.

I hope Ken enjoys it. I'm sad I didn't manage a better photo of him -- he's usually quite photogenic when I don't mess up the focus on my camera! It's soft and warm, so at least it'll do its job as a scarf. He agreed with my choice to prioritize softness over perfect colour matching, of course. Turns out Ken hasn't watched much of the old Doctor Who, though, so now he feels like maybe he should.

Quite a few other people have recognized and liked it, at least, including my mother. Tom Baker is the doctor that I remember watching sometimes as a kid 'cause he was the one my parents liked, so no surprise that she thought this was fun (if a little crazy). And of course John wants one too, but I think he should learn to knit one himself! He's good at this sort of thing and I like the idea of him messing with people's heads when they ask, "Oh, did Terri make that for you?" and he can say, "No, I did it myself!"

The best story I heard was from my friend Andrew, whose sister-in-law asked if she could knit him anything for Christmas and he said "a doctor who scarf" and she said ok without knowing what that was. When she found out, she had to retract the offer and told him he was getting gloves or something else manageable!

I say the scarf is finished because I've given it away, but if you look at the picture you can tell I only got this far in the scarf pattern:

Just over 70%, or I think around 8 feet long? I forgot to measure it. Obviously long enough for usual scarfy purposes. It's also slightly less wide than the pattern calls for because I thought it was hilarious if it was 42 stitches wide. If I were doing one for myself I think I might make it even less wide, although I *did* appreciate being able to use it as a blanket while I was knitting on the plane. ;)

I keep saying it took me around 3 weeks, but looking through my journal it turns out I started on Mar 22, so it's actually been closer to 2 weeks. 2 weeks + 2 days in fact. This was helped by the fact that I can knit at work during seminars, colloquia and other meetings (an extra 5-8 hours of knitting at work per week), but I also spent a lot more time than usual listening to audiobooks, the radio, podcasts, and even watching TV. It was fun -- often I get so bored/fidgety when i try to watch TV that I'll wind up doing things like getting up and cleaning just to avoid staying still (which is why I usually prefer audio-only media and am so hooked on the radio) but the knitting kept me busy enough that I could actually enjoy TV on my own while John was off at collab summit. I'm pretty impressed with myself regardless.

I'm most definitely not taking orders for any more dr who scarves anytime soon, but I might consider doing it again sometime just so I can say that I made a complete one. Right now, I'm trying to lay off the knitting for a bit I work on wrangling mentors and student applications for Google Summer of Code, but I'm finding that I've gotten so used to having my hands busy all the time that I'm craving a new project. Perhaps a smaller one this time, though!
terriko: (Pi)
multiple job offers

People have started to ask me what my plans are after I finish this postdoc, or rather the frequency with with I get asked has reached an arbitrary threshold, so I guess it's time to write about it. The short answer is that I'm not planning to start my job hunt 'till October at the earliest, but here's some more detailed information about my plans in case you, like many others, are curious:

1. I'm currently expecting to be at UNM 'till around Nov 2013, which would be the originally expected 2 years. The date's a bit flexible: the grant I'm on goes a little past that I think, and I can leave earlier if I have another offer that needs to start right away.

2. I'm focused on getting some publications out before I start the job hunt at all. I'm hoping to have results from the router work as early as next week, and I've got a plan for publishing my remaining thesis work, so at minimum I want papers for both of those to be out for review before I start looking.

3. My job hunting mode will probably kick off around the time of the Grace Hopper Celebration in October. That's not the greatest timing, but it's a good enjoy goal date for the papers to be out and the job fair and related resources available at GHC12 is an excellent opportunity that I don't want to miss. I'm happy to consider things that come up before then, but October/November is when I'll polish up my resume and start being active in my search.

4. I'd like to go back to Canada, but I do have a US visiting scholar visa that can be extended and transferred to another qualifying job. (It can be used for up to a total of 5 years, of which 2 are going to be used here at UNM.) There's some fascinating legalese around my current visa that makes Canada the easiest choice for my next job, but I'm not adverse to other countries.

5. I'm not committed to either academia or industry at this point, and I wasn't planning to make a more concrete decision on that 'till I have actual offers. You can expect me to be looking at a combination of academia and industry labs. I have one lab already on my shortlist after the last round of interviews. I turned down their offer of an on-site interview because I had decided on UNM, but if they're still taking on new hires when I'm done here I'd like to continue the process with them.

So I'm not looking yet, but do feel free to pass job leads my way if something comes up that you think would be up my alley.

Speaking of jobs... I *do* have a couple of friends looking for jobs more urgently than I am: One is a very talented programmer who's currently located in Halifax but willing to relocate, and one is an efficient mostly-windows systems administrator who's looking for a job in the Ottawa area. They're both around intermediate level, but given the job market they're willing to work more junior positions if that's what it takes. I'm happy to pass leads along or obtain their latest resumes if I can help make a connection!


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