Watch Me Now

There was a good article about surprisingly sexist origins of everyday things on Cracked. The point that drew my interest was about wristwatches. #4.
To summarize, wristwatches were initially thought of as “girly” because they were like bracelets. Men would instead use a manly pocket watch. Then “The Great War” came along, and wristwatches found their niche. Pocket watches were too cumbersome in that environment, and a hands-free device was much more useful.
Now I feel justified in my love of my wristwatch. If you know me, you know I will get uncomfortable if I am separated from it for too long. Everyone else around me keeps saying they use their cellphone to tell the time. That is just an update of the pocket watch, except without the convenience of a chain to keep it on your person. Although I will admit they are referred to as an electronic leash, so I may be a bit weak on that point in my argument. Mind you, I think a lot of people with cracked screens would prefer if their cell phone had been on a chain.
Now I just have to convince people that I am preparing for a land invasion of France and I will reclaim what I laughably refer to as my “coolness”.


I was listening to the news yesterday and they were talking about the earthquake that happened in Fox Creek. They had mentioned that it was felt as far away as St. Albert.
My first thought was that that was silly. I work in St. Albert, and I didn’t feel a thing. Then it dawned on me that I had.
On Tuesday it sounded like the building cracked. It felt like a big gust of wind had suddenly hit the building. But if you looked outside, none of the trees were swaying in the breeze. I forgot about it soon after. Until I put two and two together with the news report.
This was my second earthquake that I was aware of.
My first was in the Dominican Republic several years ago. Back then I thought it was a gust of wind as well.
I have apparently been in another earthquake but not been aware of it. This was in Los Angeles. I didn’t feel anything, but my friend immediately left the building. She was an expert at dealing with them I guess.

SQL Optimization

I’m the SQL guru at work, but I have no idea how I got to be that person. It just seemed to have happened. I know SQL better than a lot of other people. I’ve known some people who were better at it, and I followed their examples. Eventually, enough soaks into your brain that you gain new tools in your toolbox. Then you change jobs and you find that you are the local expert.
My work encourages me to continue self-development. They help do this by giving me access to Pluralsight so I learn more about technologies. Since I have doubts about my guru-ness of SQL, I thought I would take some courses on it. Mostly I wanted to learn how to optimize the queries. I’ve made some basic queries and watch them take minutes to perform the task. Then you make a few small changes and your result is back in under a second. I want to be more confident in my ability to do that.
The course titled “SQL Server: Optimizing Ad Hoc Statement Performance” seemed like it would do that. After about two hours in, I got the impression this is not actually going to help me optimize my SQL, but optimize how to construct the SQL so that it is cached properly. (I’ll finish the course so that I can be sure of my initial suspicion.)
I started to think that I could make a better course on SQL. Then I thought, why shouldn’t I? I know a lot of SQL, and I could write a document of all the tricks I’ve learned to improve the performance of it. Heck, that is what I’m frequently doing at work.
The biggest issue is one of self-doubt. I could write a lot of good tips. But I would always wonder if one of them was just wrong and thus negate the credibility of all of the other tips. I’m writing it out here to point out that that is silly. I really should write this document. At the very least so I can reference it myself after I’ve forgotten my tricks.