sql comments edit

For those who ever doubted (including myself) and those who ever wondered, let it be proclaimed throughout the land that I AM THE DATABASE MASTAH!!! We gots the tools, we gots the talent. Maaaaad skillz, I tell you.

[Translation: I passed my test, MS070-229 - Designing and Implementing Databases with Microsoft® SQL ServerTM 2000 Enterprise Edition.]

I studied all last week, I studied this weekend, and I studied this morning before heading into the test center. I was still pretty nervous during the test (I’m glad I didn’t eat anything because I would have launched right onto the test machine) but as the thing went on, I realized that I knew the answers to the questions. They were the same questions in the practice tests. No problem.

Finished the 44 questions on the test in about an hour. Considering they give you two hours for the test, I think that’s pretty good. In the end, I got a PASS score. They used to give you actual scores to tell you how many you got wrong, but now it’s just PASS/FAIL. No problem for me, PASS is PASS, baby.

So. One down, four to go. I think the next test I’ll take will probably be the Windows Apps in C# test. I’d best get cracking on that.

personal comments edit

Got home after work last night and planned on just sitting around as I usually do (oh so motivated am I) and maybe studying a little, but stuff happened.

First, a good friend of mine stopped by who I haven’t seen for a while and gave me a belated birthday gift that was far above and beyond anything I could have asked for, and it was very hard for me to accept (but, hey, twist my arm…): A 15GB Apple iPod MP3 Player.

Needless to say, I was shocked, but I thanked him for it several times, and I still don’t think that’s enough. That’s, like, the coolest thing ever.

Then later on, my friend (and boss) Greg called and we ended up going to see the late showing of Terminator 3.

You gotta love T3. The first one was a classic, and the second was great but took itself pretty seriously. In this one, you could tell they had fun with it. The director (or writer, or both, or maybe just everyone on board) was all, “Hey! This may be a story about the destruction of humanity, but it’s also an action film, so what say we blow some shit up? Get the SWAT team in here, God dammit! Where are those bazookas? They were supposed to be here hours ago!” I think this was probably my favorite of the three, just because it was all about the fun of the action movie and not about teaching us a lesson. Deep? No. Fun? You better believe it.

Oh, and my sister Tori in Utah called and left me a happy birthday voicemail yesterday. Better late than never(?).

So, a day after my birthday (well, two days, if you count today) and maybe things aren’t so bad. I mean, I guess sometimes it just takes people a while to “catch up” or whatever. Heh.

personal comments edit

Being 27, I’ve found, is not terribly different from being 26.

Before we wax too philosophic, let’s review the acknowledgements for the day yesterday. I got email greetings from:

  • Douglas, a friend of mine in Texas
  • Gerb, a friend I’ve had since high school
  • Jenni, my cousin
  • Tanya, regular blog reader (via comments)
  • Kristin, a friend I haven’t heard from for a loooong time
  • An automated mail system from a forum I’m a member of

Personal acknowledgements from about half of my department (there are nine people in my department) came in about half an hour before I left, when one of the guys was peeking over my shoulder and saw my calendar with my birthday clearly marked.

That’s about it.

I wasn’t, like, expecting a party, but I guess I feel a little gypped since everyone else’s birthday around here gets remembered.

So, anyway, that was the day. That evening, my mom, dad, sister Tai and husband Dan, and grandfather (on Mom’s side) came over and we had a little cheesecake. Gifts were the following:

  • Stevie Wonder: The Definitive Collection (from Jenn)
  • A Bug’s Life two-disc collector’s edition DVD (from Jenn)
  • La Femme Nikita DVD (from Jenn)
  • A 7.0 amp Shop Vac (from Jenn)
  • A 12-pack of Shasta Tiki Punch (from Mom’s cat)
  • Xena: Warrior Princess Season One DVD set (from Mom and Dad)
  • A gift certificate to Michael’s (from Tai and Dan)

I liked all the stuff I got, and it was good to see everyone over. My grandparents on my dad’s side and my sister Tori in Utah were sort of MIA as far as birthday greetings, though, which I think is kinda crappy.

But oh well. It’s not like I expected anything in particular, but I’m feeling a little disappointed nonetheless. I guess that’s just how things go the longer time goes by.

personal comments edit

I woke up on this fine birthday morning, 27 years old and tired as all hell.

My shower was nothing spectacular, but when I got out, I found I had a little present from Jenn waiting for me, which is nice - I do enjoy prizes.

The trip to work sucked ass. I can’t tell you why everyone needed to go five miles an hour under the limit, but they all did.

Got to work, and… well, that’s pretty self-explanatory. I got to work. ‘Nuff said.

Actually accomplished some good stuff at work. Got a bunch of things set up that needed to get set up, rolled out a press release on the web site. I felt pretty accomplished.

Thought about halfway through the day about the fact that my hair’s feeling pretty shaggy and I should have a haircut coming up. Flipped through my calendar and saw that the appointment was scheduled for yesterday. Well, shit. I suppose I should call the hairdresser (who’s been doing my hair for 14 years now) and apologize. I totally spaced it, and I do need a haircut. I could have sworn I looked at the calendar yesterday and didn’t see it.

But now it’s the end of the day, and no one remembered my birthday until one guy was looking over my shoulder and saw it marked on my calendar. Word trickled out and I’m getting a few “happy birthdays” from people. Some folks never knew, so I can’t blame them, but still. I guess I feel a little disappointed; I mean, we take everyone else out for lunch on their birthdays, and everyone seems to remember the other birthdays.

My boss came over and was all, “Oh, today’s your birthday? I thought it was yesterday.” Yeah, man. That makes it better. :) He says he owes me lunch. He owes me about four lunches that never seem to get scheduled, so I’m not holding my breath. He’s a good guy, and busy, so I understand. But still.

Now I’m packing up to go home, where I’ll hang out with Jenn, my parents, my sister and her husband, and maybe my grandfather, eat some Chinese food and some cheesecake, and just enjoy the evening. It doesn’t sound like the most happening party, I know, but I have bad luck scheduling parties, so I just don’t.

Besides - deep fried prawns and a hunk of cheesecake all at the same time is like a tiny party in-and-of-itself.

One other note: Last night I took a practice certification test and got 92% on it, which is the best I’ve done yet. If I can do that well on the real thing this Monday, I’ll be good.

net, personal comments edit

At the recommendation of a co-worker, I purchased the TestKing practice test questions. According to him, the questions he had on his test were darn close - if not identical - to the ones on the TestKing exam.

After reading through most of them, I’ve come to the conclusion that the self test questions from Self Test Software are almost identical to TestKing’s questions, so it’s all the same. I like the TestKing explanations better than Self Test Software’s, but for $40 extra, I may not do TestKing for the next one. I guess it all depends on how I do.

Regardless, I took a “certification readiness” practice test, which means they don’t tell you your score until the end and you are under a time limit, and I finished an hour early with an 80% (which, I think, is a passing score on the real thing). And since I’ve done that, and I’m looking over the TestKing questions and feeling pretty confident and comfortable with them, I did it.

I bit the bullet and scheduled the exam.

I’ll go in for my attempt (and hopefully pass) on Monday, July 28, at 9:00a. I figured, take this weekend to really study my ass off, then with all the info fresh in my mind, go in early Monday morning, do a last minute quick-review, and hopefully pass. At $125 a whack, I’m hoping not to have to make a second try. My hands were shaking with the adrenaline as I scheduled it. I mean, that was just the scheduling of the test. I can only imagine how I’m going to be the morning of the test itself. But I’m feeling good about it now that I’ve seen the TestKing stuff and got the decent score on the “certification readiness” test.

They said on the “certification readiness” test that 80% was a fail. Considering the other stuff I’ve seen from that practice test software, anything less than 100% is fail, too, so I don’t think I’m doing that bad.

So… here goes. Send good luck vibes my way. If I can pass this test, then I only have four more to pass and I get my certification. I haven’t planned that far yet, but it’s coming, so any help I can get, I’m taking.