Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

Engineers playing doubles pool is a sad sad sight

We inherited a pool table about a year ago, when the company which bought us moved a couple of small groups into our building, along with their Stuff. Wew also got a second foosball table. Until that time, foosball and ping pong (we have two tables) were all the rage. Ping pong is down to singles, usually on just one table, as people wait their turn to play doubles pool.

They play wrong, but that's not the topic here. Visualize as many as eight engineers standing around the table, analyzing not just the current shot, but the next 4 probable shots, and pointing out the angle, where the cue will end up, and how that will position the next shot and the next and the next. It is all geometry and not a thought to ability.

And that's where it gets interesting. Because out of the 20 or so pool players in the building, only two or three can reliably make the shots that they call. One of them is a high level manager, and he can be seen practicing alone in off-hours, while his underlings are coding. He is very good, and he even calls his shots to himself, playing alone with no one watching. Two guys are hustlers from South America, they find time to play singles in off-hours.

But at noon-ish, when the whole tribe is on break, they engineer each game, but maybe 25% of the time don't make the shot they called. And another 25% of the time the "leave" isn't where they expected. There is nothing wrong with their engineering skills, it's just that it's not the best table, and the house cues are nasty. Automation Guy has his own cue, but I don't see him winning more than his fair share.

Morning was typical, except this time I remembered to bring all the healthy snacks. There was actual work to be done on the new machines, one of the features in my pile can be done on someone else's machine without impacting them. The exercise today was to look at bugs I had filed, see which ones were fixed, and pass the test cases which prompted the bug filing.

Every morning I read the RSS feed from the Bangkok Post's latest news, and today there were some disturbing items which hint that the guy in charge intends to stay in charge longer than promised. He is the general who staged the coup, and one reason he led it is he was due to retire in a year, which meant he could run for office. But instead of holding elections, he appointed himself Prime Minister when he retired from the army, and continues martial law, with curfews and lots of censorship and no right to free assembly. He is taking a harder line than before, branding protesters as unpatriotic, and hauling the leaders in for "interviews" which sometimes last days. "lese majeste" is the usual charge, and he throws it around as if it's a real thing. The king is not a political figure in Thailand any more than Queen Elizabeth is. Last time I looked, people aren't jailed for saying rude things about her.

Lunch was at Sizzler. I ate my usual amount, less, actually, but was so full I could hardly breathe when I got back to my desk. Took an hour to recover. A symptom I have been eating less, I think. Or snacking more. Nuts can be very filling.

"Maint Reqd" light on the dash, so I made an appointment for Saturday 2-ish at the Palo Alto Toyota place. I hope they get done quickly because I have a 4:45 appt for Best Buy to do some stuff on my in-dash unit.

Saw an announcement on FB that a bunch of my friends are starting up a San Jose musical theater group. That's Sunday evening, I'll probably go late because there's a belly dance event at 3 someone is taking me to.

Little known fact: in non-leap years when February has a Friday The 13th, March does too. All it takes is for the 1st to be a Sunday.

Plans for tomorrow:
Maybe take in a Cinequest movie. There are two shorts collections, one at 7:15 and one at 10.

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