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December 18, 2003

Office Party

Last night was the "Office Holiday Party". I work with a fairly cool group of people, so these events usually aren't as painful as they sound like they should be. Last evening's shindig involved free food and an open bar at a little place in the South End. I think that allowing that getting your employees drunk every once in awhile is a really wise management policy. It's amazing how much better people get along once they get out of the office and swallow a few martinis. Not that I'm advocating overindulgence in spirits... Heavens no. I'm just reporting on what I saw. Or what I saw after 3 gin and tonics...

One of our annual traditions in the Book Mines is the "Yankee Swap". Everyone brings a gift (valued at $10 or less) to the party. Numbers are drawn from a hat. When your number is called, you pick a gift, open it, and if you don't like it you can make someone who has gone before you trade you for theres. Always a good time... Very cut throat. This year, I got #1... The best number because you open the first gift, and then can trade for anything you want at the end of the evening. Here's what I walked away with at the end of the evening.

Yes... it's a giant wooden tongue, mounted on a wall plaque. Perfect for use as a candy dish, key holder, business card dispenser, and well... conversation piece. Fabulous Fred found it at an antique store in Maine. He told me last night that he was glad I'd won it because he knew when he saw it that it was something I'd appreciate. Still not sure what that means... but I sure can't dispute it.

June 1, 2004

InDesign through the Out Door

I spent today in Woburn learning to use InDesign, the page layout software from Adobe that seems to be the new big thing in publishing these days. We've been using QuarkXpress in the Bookmines for a long time now, but Quark hasn't done a very good job of keeping up with new technology. They used to be the industry standard, but they seem to be mismanaging themselves into oblivion. Too bad, but I think most of us saw it coming. Lousy customer support and lame upgrades have been failing to impress. Being much too slow to release OSX versions certainly didn't help.
The new Adobe software is pretty cool. It's much more flexible and it interacts more seamlessly with the other applications that we use most often. They've also made it fairly easy for people to make the transition away from Quark. I'm looking forward to using it on real projects. I think I might try using it to create some fresh new Reverend Dave stuff sometime soon.

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