It’s both exciting and exasperating to start looking for work again. I think I get comfortable doing what I know, and after a while, feel pride in the things I do. We start to make plans based on our incomes. So now I have the challenging task of convincing strangers that I really am clever, clear headed, and hard working. Form submission seems like a hugely non-productive use of my time. I remember working with a placement agency in 2005, this was a completely different situation. You put yourself into their pools of talent, they specialized in these skills, so at any given event you were likely to find three to five interviews. I did get job offers every time. Some were bad. Some were slightly wrong. I ended up getting two very agreeable job offers on the same day after about two months.

I understand that was a different situation. I was very open to relocation at the time. I was single, starting a career after working in the same field for five years. I had a lot of expertise that translated well into the tasks these employers were looking for.

I think with development work, it’s much harder to gauge from a letter or resume what sort of person you’re about to hire. I understand there are coding interviews that involve algorithms work. I’ve never gotten that kind of an interview before, I think I was selling myself short due to a slightly irregular pedigree, and never applied for a developer job. I am going to make that my goal for the next few months. If I need to dust off a few old books to get my mind wrapped into sorting arrays again, that’s not so bad.

The weirdest thing about looking for work is how little what I’m doing now, and doing well, translates into the checkboxes I’m seeing on job requirements. I have started to just ignore the requirements blocks, like opening the service entrance door at the hotel, and walking into the kitchen. If you look like you’re not lost, and look like you’re not a customer, you might get far enough before anyone questions you. Working in lighting opened my eyes to the effectiveness of posted signs, and the general acceptance once you’re on the other side of the door.

I think once I get a little more ruby and rails under my belt, I will start toying with Puppet. We use ansible at work (or, someone else uses ansible, and I know it’s there). The other giant project is going to be moving mail from my work vps. See Mail Overflow to see how that worked out. The obvious alternate is to just grab the exim and dovecot configurations. If I didn’t dislike lmtp so much, I might have done just that.