personal, net comments edit

I took slightly less than a minute per question on my latest Microsoft certification test, MS 070-290: Managing and Maintaining a Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Environment, and I think I missed all of three questions total. A passing score was 700, I got 760, and from the way the results graph looks, it seems that 800 was the best possible score. Out of 45 questions, that’s not too bad.

Only one more test and I’ll have the Microsoft Certified Database Administrator certification (to add to my Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer in .NET certification). Meaningless paper? Possibly. Worth something in the job market? Most definitely.

General Ramblings comments edit

I participate in my company’s employee stock purchase plan. You contribute to the plan a small amount every paycheck and at the end of a quarter or whatever that amount of money goes to purchasing a block of company shares at a discount rate. It’s a pretty good way to go.

The problem is that the shares automatically get dumped into an ETrade account (actually, an “OptionsLink” account - sort of like an ETrade account, owned by ETrade, but more geared toward stock options and things). Now, I’m not a big stock trader. I’m not comfortable with moving electronic sums of money around willy-nilly, particularly since I have so little money to actually move. To that end, I have an account at a stock broker that I’m comfortable with, where the service is a little more personal and the experience is generally friendlier.

Every time I get stocks through the purchase plan, I send a fax over to ETrade to have them transferred to my other account. In the past this has only taken three or four business days.

This time, I asked for the stock to be transferred over, and two business days later, the stock no longer showed up in my ETrade account. I went to the web site for my other broker and… it wasn’t there, either.

I waited a couple more business days and checked again. Still no stock anywhere.

It’s been eight business days, maybe more, since I asked for the transfer. My stock’s not been received by my other brokerage, and it’s not on ETrade’s site. I’m starting to get concerned.

I called ETrade and after navigating an impossible phone tree and sitting on hold for an interminable amount of time, it turns out that ETrade’s process is a bit more involved and lengthy than I’d like, and God forbid they tell me about it. What they end up doing is transferring the stock out of OptionsLink and into a straight ETrade brokerage account (an account that I don’t even look at, let alone use). That takes several business days. Then they initiate the transfer from the brokerage account at ETrade to the one at my regular broker. That, too, takes several business days.

We’ve gotten as far as getting the stock into the ETrade brokerage account and my other broker has been contacted to expect to receive the shares in my account there. I should have something in the next - according to the telephone help lady - five to seven business days. Which would bring this process to about 15 business days, or three Earth weeks just to get some stinking stock transferred. Why so difficult? Setting up a wire transfer between bank accounts takes no time flat compared to that. What’s the problem here? And how come I have to fax my request over to someone there and I can’t just electronically initiate the transfer through the web site?

They should make two web interfaces for electronic stock trading. One for the novice user (me) and one for the advanced user (day traders). I want to buy, sell, and transfer to another account. That’s it! I don’t need all these fancy real-time analysis madubers and high-tech tracking whatsits. Big fonts, big buttons, simple interface. Maybe I’m stock-retarded. Or maybe I just want a simple experience, the same way the users of the applications I write expect.

traffic comments edit

This is the first follow-up to a Traffic Asshole Of The Week that I’ve posted, which, I think, makes this a fairly momentous occasion. Like we need a moment of silence because someone out there was stupid enough to make it to TAotW twice.

So, those sort of following this thing realize that Jenn got front-ended at a stop light last week. After being given some faulty insurance information, it turns out that the lady at fault was driving on a suspended license. And why, you might ask, did she have her license suspended?

For driving without insurance, of course.

Needless to say, this is not terribly surprising to me, but it is a highly annoying thing nonetheless. My insurance rates are sky high and I only have one accident - a rear-ender going about 10 mph - on my record. Why? Because jackoffs like this feel the need to back up for no apparent reason in rush hour traffic and not carry insurance.

Jenn has followed up with the police and got the insurance information they have on file for the lady, which is also incorrect. We’ve gotten no call back from the lady, either, so it seems Jenn’s going to be paying the $200 deductible and filing the uninsured motorist claim.

The real kicker - as if you hadn’t already read it - is that this bitch had the outright balls to file an at-fault claim against Jenn. The sheer audacity of it all makes me want to take up arms and hunt her down.

Apparently there are also other claims against this lady - tickets and whatnot that she’s evading - and there’s some sort of a warrant out for her… but (and this is something I don’t get) the police, for some reason, can’t just go to her house and arrest her. Like, every time they show up, she’s not there, and that’s stopping them. Shit, I may just go rob a bank, and when the cops show up to arrest me, I just won’t answer the door. That seems to be a viable thing now.

If it was up to me, the fucking SWAT team would be at this lady’s house. They’d swing in through the windows on ropes and break down the doors with battering rams. You know what? They wouldn’t even have to arrest her. I’d accept the property damage on her part as due pennance for the whole ordeal. Maybe they could shoot her in the meaty part of her leg or something. That’d be fine, too.

What a load of ridiculous crap. Somehow I’d like to envision a world where people take *gasp* responsibility for their actions, but I believe my Utopian dreams are just not meant to be. I’ve been told I hold too high of expectations for people and I should lower them lest I be constantly disappointed. This right here is proof positive that’s the case.