10 Best Lateral Career Moves for 2011


I have recently landed a dream job in network programming and am extremely grateful. 10 best lateral career moves for 2011I’ve been waiting an eternity for an opportunity like this. Please however, do not think for one minute that I haven’t shuffled along with the rest of my fellow Americans during this economic maelstrom. I have.

But I made the best of it.

Certainty, being what it is, forced me to dig deep into what I knew and what skills I could bring to the table. Not once did I shirk any opportunity that came my way. I guess you could say I’m resourceful.

Media and news pundits have been advising us for over 2 years to look to our latent talents, develop new skills where applicable and not to be afraid to step out of the box. Try something you have fantasized about but never dared attempt. You may find your dream job is out there waiting for you.

So I took Madonna’s advice,Express Yourself and her incredible ability to re-invent          herself over and over and over. And voila! With that in mind, here are the10 best lateral career moves for 2011 that you can make during this financial landslide.

Many of these skills you already have and can be easily transferred to land you a very profitable means of income during these trying times. You may think your skills are very niche specific, but I beg to differ.

1. Pet Groomer/Farm Hand: Dominatrix (Consider the possibilities of switching species)
2. Inner city school teacher: Drug Rehab Counselor (Hey, you’re already half the way there).
3. Pharmacist: Drug Dealer (no brainer).
4. Pastry Chef: Drag Queen (c’mon, you know you’ve thought about this one at least once).
5. Housewife, Divorcee or Prima Ballerina: Stripper (obvious choice).
6. Insurance Agent: Gigolo (You’re already selling stuff that has no future, real value or pays in the end).
7. Human Resources Administrator: Organ Transplant courier (Human beings are replaceable to you).
8. Mortgage Rep: Repo Man/Woman (Indian giver: One who gives then takes away).
9. Corporate CEO: Superfund landfill backhoe operator or grave digger. (The perfect transitional career for sociopaths looking to make career changes).
10. Banker: Lethal Injection supervisor at San Quentin (You’re nickname at work was The Grim Reaper).

Well there it is folks. There’s plenty of jobs out there. Just keep your heads up, a stiff upper lip and consider stepping sideways.


Beware terminators from the outer Blogalaxy!


I admit it. I am not very good at reading lots of blogs or commenting on them. When I have any spare time at all, (and I am always surprised to find that so many people have so much of it), I read and comment on blogs I find interesting, provocative, humorous or even just cute and furry. I am always very happily surprised at the amount of excellent content that is out there. It inspires me to write more better and it makes me appreciate that we’re all one big happy family living in some Sibylline Blogalaxy together.

I try to be a team player but those kindly suggestions by our unflappable Happiness Engineers to get more readers by commenting on other blogs, never really spurs me into action. Plus I feel like I am being ordered to do something and I hate being bossed around.

I don’t even have a Gravatar. Just the “unknown man icon”, which is probably reserved for hackers, geeks and freaks hiding from the FBI and trying to keep their web footprint down to a bare minimum. Every time I see one of these, I shudder. Probably some kind of psycho serial killer I reckon. Nevertheless, this is what I chose to represent myself. So what does that say about me? Perplexing to say the least.

Today I clicked the, “Comments I have made”, link in my dashboard, and unbeknownst to me, I had several replies to my previous comments and even a few requests for my url dating back months ago. When I tried to respond to these blogs, a big mailer-daemon type thingy appeared, admonishing that the blog had been deleted! Dreaded horror engulfed me. My cyber-digit friends from planet Blog had been vaporized!

I won’t envisage anyone self-terminating their blog. After pouring out your heart, posting your favorite photos, making friends with fellow midnight writers; What would cause someone, with such riveting, well thought out and even researched material, to simply evaporate?

At first I pondered some type of planetary abductor from Blog, maybe whisking the blogger away to be forced to send out massive emails for all eternity via AOL with nothing but dial-up because they broke some kind of cardinal blogging rule. Or worse yet, they wrote something against the Proletariat and are now languishing in a frozen cell on Pluto with some anthracite and a slab of rhyolite. See, this is why I have my blog. If I told a therapist this stuff, I’d get locked away for sure or at least be put on psychotropic meds. Fo Sho...

I couldn’t do it. My blog is my baby. It’s  a part of my anatomy. It’s my friend when no one else is around to listen to my prattle and my demented stories and therefore my therapist. I love this doggone thing more than most people. That sounds really bad doesn’t it? Maybe that Gravatar is a good representation then…

So now, I’m really getting nervous wondering where those bloggers went. Some of my blog posts are about the truly bizarre and peculiar people that have crossed my path and how the revelation of their irksome strangeness came as quite a shock to me.

Does this mean that even in the blogalaxy I cannot correctly assess a cogent entity? That I am completely unable to recognize the lunatics, the fruitcakes and screwballs and now this? Alien terminators from planet Blog? What’s the world coming to?

Well, at least I’m partially safe, hiding behind Unknown Man icon. No QR codes for me folks. No aliens are terminating or vaporizing my blog. Heck, Big Brother doesn’t even know my real name.

There’s no avoiding the Butterfly Effect

Tonight I fell asleep very early, around 8 o’clock. I had a wonderful meal prepared for me by my dear friend the Kiwi and after the meal, 2 glasses of wine and listening to  a really terrific band called Supergroove from NZ, I conked right out. But then I woke up around midnight and went out back and sat under the stars and the Birds of Paradise when this thought came over me. Consequences.

Consequences of words. Consequences of actions. Consequences of motive and thought and intent. I believe it works like one of the laws of physics that says for every action there is an equal and positive reaction, or a thing in motion stays in motion or energy can neither be created nor destroyed, only transformed. What does this mean I wondered and how is it applied to human behavior? And just so you know, animals do not suffer this fate. They operate only within the laws of physics and never intentionally cause an effect to occur. It’s not like an opposum was cheating on his taxes and 2 weeks later a semi squished him into the pavement. It’s more like he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. That is immediate cause and effect and not what I am referencing.

These laws do not only apply to car accidents or creating fire or the birth of a star or even the birth of a baby, they apply to the things that people say and do in their lives. Often the results are not instantaneous. Sometimes the results of one’s words or actions will not be seen or felt for quite some time, perhaps even many years. I guess then we should all be very careful of what we say or do. And, if the Law of Attraction and Manifesting Your Intentions is correct, well then we should watch what we think too.

Fortunately I stick to that golden rule, maybe not like glue because anyone can make mistakes. But what about deliberate, calculated mistakes or wrongdoing? Words and actions that are executed with the supreme knowledge that it is wrong or maybe even perceived as, “evil”. (I hate that word because it sounds so pompous but sometimes it is the only word that accurately describes a thing or deed).

I’ve seen the consequences of others actions many times and I am certain you have as well. It’s like you could set your watch to it and wait for the the clock to chime out the hour of the consequence. Have you ever heard of some really bad misfortune befallen on someone and felt empathy for their plight? Have you ever wondered if that was the direct result of some action of theirs some time previously that you are completely unaware of? Without sounding like jury, judge and executioner, I’d bet it was.

Sometimes it is obvious. Someone robs an old lady and beats her over the head. You know they have it coming to them. Or some nasty teenager purposely harms an innocent creature and years later is eaten by sharks. (I figured that would be the perfect effect ). But what of those less noticeable actions? Maybe someone intentionally got a co-worker fired so they could take their post. Or someone lies for years about their true behavior and when it come out a family member kills themselves. I actually know of something like this that just happened, but I won’t go into the gory details.  I guess most people call this karma. You get back what you give out.

Sometimes I don’t believe this at all or that there is a god or a law of averages. I think that is because the Universe makes changes so very slowly and we here on earth are stuck in a time warp and rarely get to see the karma or effect occur. Anyone that has studied physics or science even a little has to at least wonder about the time-space thing. So it’s no wonder we rarely get the chance to see the bad guy get their comeuppance. No worries folks, the Universe is slow, but very exacting and if you notice, does a magnificent job at  keeping things running smoothly. Like clockwork.

So while I sat alone under a gorgeous southern sky, beneath that grotto of Birds of Paradise watching as the stars, moon and planets sped by, (a trick of the eye when the clouds move swiftly), I realized that there are consequences for everything and they occur all the time right under our noses every second of every day.

I consider myself very lucky. I live a semi-charmed life and though it has its ups and downs I can honestly say that there is no bitter or miserable effect waiting in the wings for me down the road because of something I said or did that I knew was wrong. Whenever I have done wrong, I have felt the immediate slap in the face. So I know I’m all right and in the clear of chaos theory or the laws of physics. I’d hate to have a big black hole swallow me up. Phewww…

Have a happy winter solstice everyone.

French Vichyssoise a’ la Summer

This is an old classic dish, originally a peasant dish from France which was served cold. My mother brought the recipe with her from Nice, where she lived many years ago. I stick to the basic recipe but over the years have made some minor changes and serve it hot. This is comfort food for a blustery cold winter day.

6 to 7 large potatoes peeled and chopped into medium chunks or quarters.
3 to 4 large leeks, rinsed very well, trim the ends, slice lengthwise and apply a medium chop.
1/4 stick of butter, more or less. I like more.
6 cups of chicken stock,(you may use chicken bullion or paste, just reduce or omit salt later).
Fresh cracked black pepper to taste.
Fresh ground coarse salt to taste.
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg.
1/2 pint of heavy cream.
1/4 cup of Harvey’s Bristol Cream Sherry.

Saute’ the chopped leeks, in a cast iron skillet preferably, in the butter until wilted and very tender.
Boil the potatoes in the chicken stock until fork tender.
When potatoes are done cooking, lightly mash them in the broth, leaving small, medium and large chunks of potato.A fork will generally suffice.
(I don’t blend or puree the potatoes but the recipe often calls that you do. You choose what texture you prefer).
Add the cooked leeks to the potato and chicken broth mixture. Add cracked pepper, and salt ( if using fresh broth not bullion) and the nutmeg. Simmer slowly for an hour with the lid on.

Add heavy cream and then slowly add cream sherry. Simmer another 5 to 10 minutes or until the alcohol has completely cooked off.

I serve this with a fresh salad:
In a chilled bowl add baby green mesclun salad mix, sliced strawberries, mandarin oranges, candied pecans, baby goat cheese or bleu cheese crumbled, thinly sliced English cucumbers. Toss lightly. Finish with a strawberry vinaigrette.

Strawberry Vinaigrette:
In a blender place fresh strawberries, 1/4 cup organic honey, fresh cracked pepper, 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar and a pinch of cinnamon. Blend on pulse. With blender on, slowly drizzle extra virgin olive oil into mixture until well blended.