Monday, October 12, 2009

Brief update on life

It's been a while, I know. I guess in Jew news, my uncle from Israel called last week. The one who called me the day of my wedding to say I was still in the family. That wedding day phone call was actually the first time he ever called me, so this was the second. We talked a bit about my dissertation (he actually also has a PhD in sociology, except he now teaches chumash (bible studies) to elementary school students), and he tried to convince me that I should go to shul with B for Simchat Torah so B can "check it out" and see how awesome Judaism is?? I told him I'd think about it, cause I still don't have the ovaries to just flat out tell my relatives no apparently. Need to work on that.

In money news, I finally changed my cell phone plan yesterday after waiting 2 farkin years for the old one to expire. See, two years ago some dude from my cell phone company called me up and somehow convinced me that it would actually be cheaper to get 2 phone lines and a 'family plan.' Why I bought into this I will never know, especially since at the time B hadn't even moved in yet, so what the heck would I need two lines for! So then I was trapped in this stupid cell phone plan for 2 years that cost me $80 a month because this dude lied and it was NOT cheaper once you took into account taxes.

Anyways, it finally expired a week ago so yesterday I got rid of the second line and reduced my plan for the first line- so instead of paying $65 + tax a month for 600 anytime minutes + free roaming + free nights/weekends starting at 7pm, I'm now paying $35 + tax a month for 200 anytime minutes + free roaming + free nights/ weekends starting at 7pm. Oh did I mention I also looked at my minutes usage for the last year, and I have NEVER talked more than 200 minutes a month during daytime hours? It seems that actually living with the one person I want to talk to on a regular basis (and keeping in touch with other friends on the internet instead of the phone) means I never use my phone minutes. I'm very pleased with actually having a bill go DOWN in price for once. Next to tackle is the cable/internet bill which has risen from $93 a month to $170 a month over the last 3 years (with no change in service) because my cable company is a monopoly and is full of bastards.

Anyways, the point of this whole rant is to say that these companies are full of shysters. The cell phone lady kept trying to convince me it would be cheaper to get a plan that was actually more expensive (The $40 a month plan that has more minutes), when it would clearly not be because of, well, math. Then she tried to tell me it would be $7 extra a month to have my free minutes start at 7pm, when I had the website open in front of me that said $5 a month. Then I had to talk to some dude, who offered me a $50 credit to keep my second phone line. Then he finally transferred me to some other lady about canceling the second line, who started off by being all "ARE WE IN DANGER OF LOSING YOUR BUSINESS TODAY?" in an accusatory tone, and then tried to convince me that I could still use a second line, even though I (lied and) told her I live alone! Are you farking kidding me? I'm getting much better at dealing with them though- two years ago I clearly was not great given that this dude convinced me to get this horrible plan, but in the meanwhile I've had 2 years of dealing with students trying to put one over at me, and those skills totally translate into 'fighting with cell phone companies' skills! :) Totally proud of myself right now! :)


  1. AE: You seriously rule! Love the "I haven't got the ovaries" line :P

  2. AE: Good luck with the job search. It sounds promising. Can you enlighten me on one question. For those with PhD's in sociology who can't get a college/university teaching job or aren't cut out for or interested in teaching, what other career paths do PhD's in sociology follow? Are there opportunities in government or private industry?

  3. Brief -- b-r-i-e-f: brief. (I before e, except after C, or when sounding like 'hay' - but that second part of the rule really doesn't apply here)
    Be sure to spell check your job applications, resumes, articles for publication, etc.
    I'm paying $45/month on my son's 'add a line for $9.99' cell phone plan. For that I get unlimited nights (after 7 PM) and weekends, 100 anytime minutes, free calls to my son and unlimited texts. I don't know if my son is ripping me off or if the cell phone company is ripping me off.

  4. Lucy - Great reminder about proof reading resumes and cover letters. I've been screening letters and resumes for a professional position where I work. I am appalled at what I am seeing, including spelling and grammatical errors and just plain poor writing form people with four year degrees and some advanced degrees. You can't rely on spell checkers. You must print out the documents to review them properly. Better yet, also have someone else read them. Mistakes on blogs and in emails are one thing. They are inexcusable in cover letters, resumes and writing samples used in a job application.

  5. oh no worries, my application materials are closely spell checked, much more so than my blog posts. :)

    Nora- There are lots of jobs in government, especially if you specialize in quantitative methods. Those jobs are my backup if I don't get an academic job I plan to apply to jobs at the Census, the National center for health statistics, the bureau of labor statistics, the center for disease control, etc. The Census especially hires a ton of sociologists. Then there are jobs in nonprofits and NGOs, again usually involving research of some kind. A friend of mine works for a state government running juvenile delinquency statistics. A lot of people also get a string of postdoc positions (contract positions at colleges as a researcher, but that do not generally require teaching). I'm applying to a few of those as well.

    In general the non-academic jobs are very much concentrated in the DC area, but there are jobs in other areas as well.

  6. Thanks for the info. It makes sense that high-level statistical analysis and modeling is part of being a sociologist. A government job is not a bad thing. I love D.C. and you might really enjoy living in the D.C. area for a few years.

  7. "Great idea! Also, his mother has been so supportive, we're going with her to a special Jewish/Catholic outreach program at Our Lady of Perpetual Naches. Then we can compare."

  8. I am proud of you, too. Ya gotta be tough on those who just want to talk you into something you don't need.

  9. Lowering your cable bill:

  10. "Our Lady of Perpetual Naches"

    That's awesome! lol. I hear you re: not wanting to crush relatives. Since pip has been so anti, my pop has been encouraging me more. I know he's hurting, in general, and I don't want to kick him when I know he's already down, so I've switched from, "I know; stop." To, "Thank you; I'm aware. I will keep all available options in mind." (and ignore them, but I don't need to tell him that, or that the #1 reason I avoided the UWS on ST is 'cause this guy who wants to know me biblically was going to be there and I didn't feel like being looked at like I was a sandwich on a starving man's plate).

    Did I mention the thoughtful job ads for positions in OJ land he had someone look up for him that he sent me? No, I didn't. One position was at where he works. Guess what? I'd rather go homeless than have to wear a skirt while working an editor's schedule for [name of major OJ organization] in that location (extra long commute).

    Not that Jewish holidays off and early winter Fridays don't lack appeal, but I could just imagine people trying get me married off and me having to explain that I'm not observant enough for any guy they have in mind and how (not) well that would reflect on him in his job.

    Wow, I just realized -- that's the perfect reason why I can't apply for that post. The other ones, I'm not exactly qualified for.

    I want an Our Lady of Perpetual Naches T-shirt. :lol: Closest I found was Perpetual Guilt:


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