The recent half of the family came over to get the hell out of Ireland when the Brits starved people intentionally, then sort-of intentionally, sort of accidentally started a religious civil war. According to the family bible, they stayed with black families that introduced them to Jewish people before they noped-the-hell-out of NYC and Boston in the 1830's. They ended up in Philly just in time to realize they had to go west. They kept a list of names of people that helped them out along the way and ended up mining in the Rocky Mountains when the Civil War started.
The father of one of the families notes in the margins of Romans 14 and not sure why this stuck with me, but in shaky pen was written: Hebrew fed me beef. First in my years eating flesh of cattle.
The older men in the group had to be in their 40's when they came over, so this was a 50ish year old man writing this statement. I wonder how many more Irish immigrants never ate cow/beef until they came to the US and started working here.
It's not a hope thing. It's an anger and frustration thing. They suck down more in SSI than I make a year, they have a full pension on top of that, have a house paid off, and with Prop. 13 in California are only paying $400 a year in property taxes, less than a third what I pay out in the sticks. And Medicare takes care of ALL their health bills. My dad retired after 30 years in a union job that offered they health care for life, so they get free Supplemental Medicare; they don't even pay deductibles. This is good for me as they are taken care of and I do not have to worry about my mom and dad ending up homeless. And here is where I start to get mother fucking hostile and angry at this generation of fuck shits.
The Boomers are the definition of privileged. They grew up in a superpower that invested heavily in the future. What did they do with the world they were given? Fucked over the planet's ecology, turned the US from the largest creditor nation ever seen to the largest debtor nation (IN EIGHT FUCKING YEARS BY THE WAY) Fucked over the educational system, tore up the unions, and sat in front of the TV for 40 years and did fuck all of nothing with the amazing gifts they were given. Computer revolution? their kids did that. Moon race? Their parents did that. They fucked up the housing market so bad I don't think it can be fixed. They turned College into a necessity then turned that need into a lifelong debt sentence while at the same time shitting on blue collar work that is in dire need of people. The one wage household died and was left as a rotting corpse in a barely read history book under their watch. Vaccinations that eliminated Polio, Measles, Smallpox etc? Their parents did that... they did so well that the anti-vax people are mow mostly the children of the people who worked so hard to eliminate those diseases. Now, Boomers like my parents whine that "those damn kids" (that they raised btw) are ruining everything and nothing is their fault. They are against tax reform unless it lowers taxes to starve the government, while also moaning that SSI is not giving COLAs. They suck down on Medicare while complaining of entitled Bernie people wanting socialized health care. And its not just my parents. It's most of them. The Boomers either became drug using burn outs (while also being the generation that waged an all out war on drugs), yuppies whom sold the industrial base to play stock market or apathetic losers who can't be assed to question the bullshit they suck down 12 hours a day from the media.
Boomers benefited from a functional government that would now be called socialist, then voted for three bands of robber barons that dismantled the benefits they were handed as children. Boomers gave us Reagan, W Bush and Trump. And while I have grave disagreements with Bill Clinton, he is going to get a pass by being lucky to get the benefits of the tech boom that masked the economic chaos of his war on pensions and unions not to mention the roll back of Roosevelt's work to separate banks from the stock market that lead to the '07 crash. More and more in my mind, it seems that everything the Boomer Generation touches turns to pure shit. The only 'hope' is that they all forgot to save for retirement as they voted to gut pensions and they all got fat and lazy so their life expectancy is dropping. We have maybe a decade left of the Boomers as a political force to have their one last hoorah at destruction, thank you for President Trump. Then the rest of us, I hope, can pick up the pieces and make some sort of future out of the ashes.
I'm a gamer. That means I hate women, am a part of the alt-right, am racist and one step away from shooting up a school.
I'm a metalhead. Which means I am a druggies who gets into fights, worships Satan and abuses Animals.
I play D&D. So I summon demons and participate in anti-social behavior.
I'm Irish. So I'm a drunken lazy lout good for nothing but menial labour.
I own guns, so there is that baggage.
I'm a liberal. Ever feel like you don't belong? Be the one liberal Sanders supporter at the gun range. There are literally dozens of us left-leaning gun nuts! DOZENS!
All my life I have been on the outside. All my life every problem has been my fault, my friends' fault. And every time these foolish stupid garbage discussions come up, the people pushing them turn out to be ugly people who buy drugs from gay male prostitutes, etc. There are a lot of people like us out there, the problem is that we are quietly doing our own thing and disgusted by the loud voices screaming from their blogs, from the TV from the pulpit, from the podium. It gets frustrating, it makes you angry. And I've been dealing with this shit for 40+ years now.
The only advice I can give you is build up thick skin. Learn to laugh at your adversaries. Fight for the ideas you believe in. Help those around you in need. Leave the place better than you found it. Don't be ashamed of who you are or the hobbies you have, or the people you vote for, or any of the incidental bullshit that is used to label you and put you in a cage. Be the better person.
Men are programmed to Build, it is sort of our purpose. So, build something with meaning. Build a group of friends that will walk through hell with you. Spend time with them, eat meals with them, fight the battles with them. Play games, tell jokes, pick them up when they fall, scream all the louder when you kick ass. The internet has been a disaster for friendships and interpersonal support groups; this is one reason I think that so many men kill themselves in this day and age. Trump won because there are millions of people out there that have been cut out of life. The jobs are gone, the communities are crumbling, the families are torn apart as the kids run the fuck away. Trump tapped into that anger and now he is President. We fight him by being better, by building freind circles, families and communities.
So many people have spent the last year in a filter bubble. I've been screaming at anyone who will listen that Trump was going to win, and I was told to shut up, I was called a "BernieBro" I was called a misogynist because I did not like Clinton, I was even called a neocon(!)...after writing checks to get a Socialist elected President. Yet, here I am, waiting for the rest of you to catch up to where I was six months ago. The thing about me? I've been called every name in the book; you cannot insult me. But when it comes time to clean house, to move forward? You bet your ass I am going to remember every one who shit on Sanders, on Dean, on Warren. We have a fight on our hands. We have the opportunity to build things. And IMO most of that building will be offline. Look at all the people saying they are going to be offline for a while, I don't think it is a coincidence.
So go out this weekend. Get real face time with people. Go to a protest and see that there are others like you out there. Go to a bar and watch an NFL game. Go get lost in a group of people. And next week let's start talking about the work ahead of us.
Monoprice if you do not know about them. Get cables in any size, shape, ends, length, color. It is cheaper to get the stuff from them than it is to make it yourself. And with your issue, you need to develop a colour code system (e.g. switch to switch black, gateway routers white something like that. We do switch to switch RED and our VMWare stuff YELLOW so you know not to mess with those connections) You might even want to think about using the different connectors as a way to segregate cable due to your limited colour palette.
Things they do not tell you in class, round 1.
Learn to write a proper IT email. It is part cover your ass, part WTF happened, part I fixed that shit. After you fix something, send an email documenting the event, no matter how small. Depending on NDA etc concerns, this email will have a TO and a CC field. The TO field is to the people who were impacted by the event; The customer, the department head, the people who fixed the problem, within reason. The CC field is for your boss, the email for your IT group where you keep your "CYA documents" aka cover your ass, and possibly the boss of people who are not on your team who helped out, especially if things went really well. Part two of this message is the subject. Short, to the point, almost bland "Report on trouble with customer X 10-26-2016" Something like that. Part three is a paragraph with no more than FOUR sentences. "There was a problem. We found the problem. We fixed the problem. Below is how we fixed it and how we are working to prevent issue in the future." 99% of the people you send this message to will stop reading at this point. The final part is a detailed description of the issue, how it was discovered, how it was fixed. This part is for you and the team so you have a record of things being fixed, and more importantly, how you fixed it for when it happens again. Writing this out will help you cement in your brain good troubleshooting and communication skills. One great bit of advice I saw is to read airline accident reports from crashes. You do not need to be that anal, but you want to be able to have a written record of how you solved problems and are now taking action to prevent the problem from occurring in the future. Even if the only person who gets this letter/email is you, writing it out and learning how to make an after action report like this is a part of the skill set that will cement and if by nothing more than rote repetition retain knowledge.
Also, people in general cannot write worth a shit. Write good, clean, concise messages and you will stick out. And remember, nobody reads past about four sentences.
Part of your job in IT is to be proactive. As a networking guy, get Nagios Core for free, and also MRTG and know how they work, why they work, and how to monitor your network tree. Learn how to do the alerts, SNMP, etc. This will also force you to dig into Linux a bit to learn postfix, scripting, etc that you will need in the future. Don't be like me and have a mental hump about coding and scripting, every networking job in the future is going to be at least a little bit coding. Know what is failing before the phone rings; I've had people call after I get the alerts and can then talk to someone impacted as if I am already working on the problem. Even if it feels like a minor thing, when you come off as a guy who knows what is going on, you instill confidence in your user base. Cisco also has monitoring tools, but you may end up in a non-Cisco environment and it is always nice to have free options. Nagios can also be set up to display on a Raspberry Pi as a web site on a bigger screen TV to act as a NOC screen, which looks cool as hell to the non tech people who walk through the office.
Another part of your job, one that is rarely talked about? Make you boss look good. If you can keep other people off your boss's back, and make their job easier, do it. Keep them in the loop, let them know if shit is happening. And if your boss does not respect your talents, time, effort or energy? With a CCNA you will get recruiting calls weekly with job offers, depending on where you live. This industry, for people who are good at their jobs, is too competitive to deal with shit tier direct reports. I could make double what I am making, and have had that offer, but my boss is awesome and I'm staying as long as she is.
You will have days that fuck all of nothing happens, and you will want to spend it on reddit and hubski. Read manuals instead. Document shit that has not been updated in a while. Start a WIKI for your work stuff. Because you will have days like I am having where I am on the go and working overtime to get a project done on time. I worked 13 hours today deploying computers, and have 100 more to go before we start wiping them and boxing them up for return. I'll not have a down day for at least a few weeks. You will also have times like these, but IMO, the crunches and the soft times even out over the year.
As a network guy, if you ever come into work and say "I'm bored" you better fix that shit. Either look at BIOS file updates, read manuals, check monitoring, document equipment and procedures, DO SOMETHING. Being bored when all the stuff is working will breed complacency and that becomes habit forming. Learn the good habits now and carry them forward; the people who need to notice these things? They do and will.
If I think of more stuff I'll post here.