Year in review

Obviously, if you really want to see my year in review, you can go back and read through the blog… but for myself, as much as anything, I did want to go ahead and write a short review of my year, which is pretty much wrapped up other than the Christmas trip home on Thursday…

The jobs (real, unreal, and gone)

WellPoint/Anthem — it’s been an interesting year… it took some whining and negotiating, but I got onto the project team for the integration of the Blue Cross of California helpdesk from Verizon in Tampa to Anthem in Richmond… and it’s been a wild ride, with trips to Tampa between the hurricanes, lots of conference calls and meetings, lots of planning, and a headlong rush to finish the project on time… and this past Thursday, it all paid off with a smooth transition of 100% of the work from Tampa to Richmond.  As I think I noted, it also will pay off with a nice end-of-year bonus.  Yay. 🙂  But I’ll be honest, getting this work done right, on time, and accurately was the important part… because we have another merger and another outsourced helpdesk to deal with… and we’d like to think that we did such a good job getting the California project done that we deserve a shot at bringing the helpdesk for New York into the fold next…

Oldies 107-3 — it’s ironic… I lost hours when I needed some extra time, and got hours back when I needed the money… and nobody at Oldies knew that.  I’m doing well there… 2 1/2 years on the radio now, and I can’t believe it’s been that long!  Although radio can change in a minute, I don’t think I have any short-term worries… the Oldies format is always a question mark, simply because most advertisers fear trying to sell our core audience (but the thing is, they CAN be sold, if you have the right product)… the new ownership at Oldies thinks that the format can work, so we should be OK for at least the first half of ’06.

Wrestling — of course, I took 2005 off from the wrestling business… but it looks like I’ll be back in 2006… when and where are kind of under wraps right now, but there is something working and if it comes off, I’m back.  In any rate, I’ll have my Virginia license for 2006 so even if the plans fall through, I may work a few shots just to keep a hand in it… ring announcer or Commissioner, whatever’s needed… 🙂

That Place I Shall Not Name — I need to make this admission here… I wasn’t an innocent victim.  Looking back, I allowed the situation at That Place to warp my perspective… and I reacted in ways I probably shouldn’t have.  Don’t get me wrong, That Place is as cliquish and cult-like as I’ve hinted at before, but I knew that going in and then acted like it was a complete surprise to find it out.  I knew better… I’m damn sure supposed to be smarter than that.   It was a point in time where I let the situation dictate to me instead of taking charge of the situation.  I paid for it with a rare firing (as opposed to the financially-based layoffs I’ve been through before).  I usually don’t get fired.  I usually quit.  Ironically, I was planning to quit, about a month later than I was fired… but this time, I didn’t see the bullet until it was too late.  And, from That Place’s perspective, the firing made sense.  If I’d been able to hold my temper instead of venting, they’d have never known how I felt and I could have gotten away cleanly.  Instead, I handed them my head on a silver platter.  In retrospect, of course, I didn’t lose a lot.  I did find out that the people there who claimed to be friendly with me fell into two camps — the ones who were friendly because they thought I was part of their Borg, and who cut me dead the minute I wasn’t… and the few who really value my friendship and who’ve kept in touch.  I’m glad to have the Borg out of my life, and I’m going to do my best to keep the rest.

The rest

My doctor keeps telling me that while my diabetes is under control, my cholesterol is starting to worry him more now… and that although I lost about 25 pounds when I got sick with the shingles, I really need to lose a lot more.  Of course, he’s right.  I need to do something about that.  I have a gym membership that I’ve let lapse… maybe I can reactivate that, if I can find a way to make the time work…

I’m still single, of course.  Had I been doing this every year, that line would be there every year.  I’m comfortable with the fact I’m a terminal bachelor.  It’s nice, in one respect… I can admire the variety and beauty of the female gender without having one of them slapping me every time I do… 🙂 on the other hand, it’s kind of lonely.  I’m used to it, don’t get me wrong, but it’s kind of lonely.

The summary

2005 was a positive year.  Even the surprise of losing the gig at That Place was balanced by the realization that I’m better off without it.  My full-time job is great.  My part-time job is going well.  I’ll coming back to wrestling.  That’s a pretty damn good way to wrap up a year.

Looking ahead

At WellPoint, I think I’ve found a direction long-term.  I know I’m not a people manager… so I’d like to take a look at project management.  It seems that while lights-on work comes and goes, there’s always a new project to tackle.  Someone has to manage those, and I think it’s something I can do.  At Oldies, I don’t think there’s anything to change… and if anything weird happens there, I can try to get shifted over to Liberty.  And I’m looking forward to being in front of live crowds again as a wrestling personality (of sorts). 

I am going to do something about my weight in ’06.  I have to.  As I get older, staying around 300 lbs is a huge risk, and with a family history of heart problems (three grandparents died of heart attacks, and my dad has had his share of issues), it’s just plain dumb not to start to figure out a way to get to a healthier weight.  And they say it might make my diabetes and cholesterol more manageable if I do cut the weight down.  Hmmm… I lost 25 pounds when I got sick before, maybe I just need to find the right exotic disease… (joke)

The last word

A special thanks here to the people that I know about (and some that I don’t) who read this (both here on LJ and the stuff I crosspost to MySpace)… the KS gang (who were a valued safety valve when everything went bad at That Place)… Hayley’s dad in Raleigh, and yes, I’ll get to your new theatre in ’06 by hook or by crook… the guys from the wrestling business who won’t let me forget I’m a part of the fraternity (and who made it possible for me to think about doing shows again)… my MySpace friends (thanks for everything)… and if you are a reader and you don’t think I mentioned you, shout out. 🙂   To my favorite writer in Chicago, it’s been too damn long, we have to get together soon… and, in the end, thanks to those folks who happen to have my last name back in Chicago — Richmond may be my home, but Chicago’s home.

Happy Holidays (Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus, or whatever I forgot)… 2006 is going to be a great year.  Thanks for being part of it, and I’ll see you on the radio!

Comments welcome, invited, and please feel free to rip this off and write up your own year-in-review!


Author: Rob Hoffmann

Occasional blogger, slightly less occasional improv player/ref/tech, full-time computer techie, radio producer (basketball, mostly), generally nice person (if you ask me).

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