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ok, now *that* was funny. i no longer hate you Len.
Old 05-29-2007, 06:33 PM
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But looking at about 33% depreciation in 9 months. Japanese cars are looking better every day...that's about what my Subie did over 2 years.
Your grandpa used to say that new car dealerships should have a big wooden beam hanging 5 feet above the ground right outside the exit door . . . to give you the much deserved whack in the head.
Old 05-29-2007, 06:35 PM
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Sorry to hear about the funk Rammy.

You should try to get back into Engineering... Maybe Porsche related.

My sitiuation was at 30 years old he company I worked for for 12 years shut down and moved to Tennessee. We lived a comfortable life with my wife staying home with the kids, the little hobbie farm and a Porsche or 2. Now I am a poor college student going for my Mechanical Engineering degree, My wife is working a job at the University doing research and my kids are at school and daycare at the tune of $360 a week! I spend over $600 a month in gas and 2.5 hours on the road each day commuting to school. Between the daycare and gas it totally consumes my wifes income. Now how the heck does the mortgage get payed? Life sucks sometimes but turn those lemons into lemonaide. Think back to all the hard classes you had to endure to get your ticket punched showing you are an Engineer. Think of all the art students which were getting high and drunk while you were trapped in the library doing your homework until 2:00am. I am going through this right now so I can remind you of the pain if you need me to.

Keep your chin up bud.

Speedy
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Old 05-29-2007, 07:41 PM
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All this car stuff is fine, but back on topic . . .

ramm, for me the way to deal with a big problem is to break it down into pieces that are individually small enough to tackle, then figure out what order to tackle them in, if you are lucky it turns out that there is one particular problem that is the master key. Then do the same for each individual problem, determine what steps you have to take to solve it, and then start taking them, one step at a time, systematically and logically. And stay alert for "bluebirds" - opportunities that unexpectedly show up.

You'll have to do the analysis for your own situation, but it seems like your master key problem might be what career should you pursue. How to get started in the career might be a secondary problem, and the apartment situation is probably in last place. Maybe you'll decide the key problem is something else - don't overlook taking a hard look at yourself.

If the "what career" problem is where you'll start, think about finding a career counselor and taking some aptitude tests. Don't laugh, a good friend of mine did that, somewhere between his 3rd and 4th job post MBA, it helped him.

I don't know you, but it sounds like you have a good education, a variety of experience and skills, technical and soft. You can express yourself very well. You've got a work ethic. I have to think when you decide on a direction, you'll have what it takes to get it done.

I was quite unhappy about 3 years ago, liked my profession but hated my job, was maxed out and losing the political battle (and my old company was an utter pit of political maneuvering). It took 2+ years to find the right job, took 10 months to get hired into my team, there were times when I was really down. But one day I finally managed to turn the key and things have been pretty good ever since.

You find that key and keep working on it until it turns.
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Old 05-29-2007, 07:43 PM
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for me the way to deal with a big problem is to break it down into pieces that are individually small enough to tackle,
Late one Autumn day when I was at my lowest I watched a squirrel storing up nuts for the winter; one at a time he would take them to the nest.

And I thought, if that squirrel can take care of himself with the harsh winter coming along, then so can I. Once I broke my problems into small pieces I was able to carry them, just like those acorns, one at a time.
Old 05-29-2007, 07:51 PM
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Every Pelican surfer could come on here and tell you their view of the world, or rather how they manage to be relatively content in life, but until you are ready to lift yourself out of your funk, you will never find happiness.

I agree with an earlier poster that you didn't give engineering enough time. There are inefficiencies all around us, and the world isn't fair. But if you let it get to you, you are not looking out for "No.1" well enough. You've got to get yours...and get it because you believe you deserve it. You work hard and you earn it. You pay your dues and you keep kicking until you get what you want. If the company you are with (were with) can't recognize it, you take your skills somewhere else.

At 42, you are not too old to start in engineering. You have at least 20 years of your working years to make something of yourself in engineering. Engineering and your experience in sales and market analysis can be a strong combination, but if you are going to walk into an interview with an "I won't like this job and I won't be happy" attitude, you won't get pass the interview.

Before you can even think about making a career change, you've got to get yourself in the right frame of mind. No one wants someone from the "Can't Tribe" on their team. I see guys out of college with no experience perform far better than guys with 20+ years in engineering. I'd rather take 3 college grads with the right attitude than a 20+ yrs senior engineer with a bad attitude any day.

I've got a kid 3 months out of college working for me now that I'd take over some of the other engineers in my firm. He does 3 times the work and doesn't complain. He knows he has to put in his dues, and he's eager to learn. Sure he makes mistakes and he needs help, but he learns from it and he keeps kicking! He's more valuable than a lot engineers in my firm, and he's making <1/3 of what some of those guys make. But he'll move up fast, and he'll surpass those loafers.

If you managed to get your engineering degree, I would bet that you're smarter than the average Joe. If you put your mind to it, and let some of the nonsense roll off you, you'll find a happy career in Engineering. But you have to be willing to put in your dues! You'll be kicked around and you'll see people younger than you get ahead, but if you don't put on you competition hat...forget it. Instead of letting it get you down when you see people do better than you, motivate yourself to do better than them! You have to motivate yourself. The whole of Pelican OT can't be on your shoulders to make you stick to any job or career.

Your post is a sign that you know you need to do something. Start with what you have and begin to build yourself up. You mentioned that last time you made any real money was in engineering, and you left engineering because you didn't like the BS. Well, the BS you are in now isn't any better and you are making less money.

I went through a whole lot of BS to get to where I am happy in engineering. Like you I hate lying and I can't help but be upfront. I have been offered several technical sales jobs and turned them down, because of the same reasons you give. So I stuck to engineering where the facts and proven solutions are what counts.

Along the way, I have been in worst situations than you, and it would have been so easy to throw in the towel. I was poor and just struggling to pay the bills. But I had my sense of pride....and I kept kicking! I had moments when I couldn't see the purpose in it all...and I allowed myself to fall into self pity. That didn't make anything better or change my situation, but it was good to find the lows..the lowest that one can sink to...just to be able to get up and start kicking again.

Nothing has been easy...

I went from running for my life to fighting off starvation in a refugee camp, to living on government food programs, to living well below the poverty line for half my life...but it was a good life because I had a loving family (you do too). I borrowed and worked to pay for college. Even college was a near disaster. I almost flunked out of engineering school, because I loss purpose and felt I was doing it for the wrong reasons. So I switched majors to save myself the embarassement of flunking out. After graduating with the 2nd chosen degree, I was still not content. So I started kicking again, and worked 20-30 hrs a week, took 20+ hrs a semester of college...and finished my engineering degree as quickly as I could. I had to..I was starving myself to pay for college and the credit card bills that I was running up to help pay for school.

After college I quit my first well paying job where I was around good people who respected me.....because I wasn't happy where I was. I quit cold...no job lined up. But I found one in less than a week because I was confident in my interview and knew what I wanted. I was there for less than a year, because I was becoming a drone and my integrity was compromised by a senior member of management. So I took another engineering job that paid less money...and I was happier, even though the company I was leaving offered up even more money and a management position. I kept at it, and I kept kicking. I'm still kicking.

I'm now in a good position, make more money than some of my more senior peers, and I have surpassed them in rank. There are plenty of inefficiencies around my office and there are plenty of things that folks find unfair...but it would be the same BS anywhere, engineering or not. But I keep kicking.....and I'll keep kicking. I'm proud of what I have achieved. The terrible things I've had to endure have made me even more pround of my accomplishments. At the age of 35, I've made management and I've got a hell of a lot more kick in me. I'm doing a hell of a lot better than guys I envied during college, because they didn't have to struggle due to their trust funds and wealthy parents.


So get yourself out of your funk. Time for self pity is over.....start kicking. There is inequity all around us....and self pity won't fix it......YOU HAVE TO FIX IT. You're educated and you are physically able. There is no excuse you can give. You are doing better (and can do even better) than a very large portion of the population in American. If you don't make something of yourself with your education and the opportunites available in American....then you failed yourself. You are envied by manual laborers all around you, you just dont' know it. Maybe they think you're an fool for not doing better.....all of this should motivate you. Go ask the laborer on the street pushing a mower or pushing a broom if they won't switch places with you in a heart beat. Go work with them for a week....you just might find purpose in YOUR life.
Old 05-29-2007, 08:10 PM
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Been doin' mechanical engineering for 30 years now. I've been handed some real "basket case" projects that sometimes just made me despair. The best solution was is to just work on in despair doing the best that I knew how. The "sun did eventually come up" and at dawn I found myself out far ahead of my problems because "I rowed through the night."

There is no standard formula for life or success; there are a million different ways and all are valid. Experiences, sacrifices, skills, personal relationships, personal accomplishmments and giving something back are what count. Stuff is just stuff and it will all return to the earth's crust and atmosphere.

Figure out something you enjoy doing and try and move your life and work in that direction.

Cherish and enjoy your family; there is power and comfort therein.

All jobs/careers have a certain amount of "crap" involved; just shovel it out of the way (take care of it) and get to the good stuff.

Get some perspective and inspiration; I suggest some books:

"12 O'Clock High", by Lay Beirne, Jr. and Sy Barlett, " Magnificent Obsession" by Lloyd Douglas or "Schindler's Ark (List)" by Thomas Keneally. There are movies of these but the books have more content and depth.

Whenever the 20th (now the 21st) century gets me down I get out "A Distant Mirror" by Barbara Tuchman or "A World Lit Only by Fire" by William Manchester and regain my perspective.

Give of yourself; do some community service. There are many in need of your skills and just your friendship. You may find your soul repaid ten-fold.

Good luck and Cheers, Jim
Old 05-29-2007, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by lendaddy
I thought the slushbox was the ex-wife, no? What are we talking about exactly again?
Kegel exercises or a little well placed polygrip will cure that problem.
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Old 05-29-2007, 09:01 PM
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Sounds to me like you need a little change of scenery. I have never heard of South Beach being referred to as an engineering mecca. More like one of the places on Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. I would suggest you try engineering again...someplace where engineering is more common and popular than Miami. A break from the rat race that comes from living where everyone is trying to make the next big deal/killing. Sometimes a smaller, less exotic locale is what one needs for a fresh start...and maybe the "big bucks" will not seem quite so inportant then. It seems to me that the big money just does not happen until you quit trying so hard to get it.
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Old 05-29-2007, 09:08 PM
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You could always move up the beach to Melbourne/Cocoa/Merritt Island. They've got this little operation out on the cape that they need engineers for...
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Old 05-30-2007, 04:46 AM
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Here's an "outside the box" idea, although your wife has to be up to it. I take it you have no kids and are still under 30. And have a little money stashed away.

So here's what you do. Sell the wife's car, buy a VW Westfalia camper, and the two of you drive it up to Alaska. Then down to San Diego. Then up to Maine. I spent two full summers doing this, and there's no better way to sort out a life. I went alone, but met many married couples doing this and having the time of their life.

Life should have a purpose but there are times when life should just be fun. Think about what to do for a living while driving across the plains of eastern Wyoming at 60 mph.
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Old 05-30-2007, 06:28 AM
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Sorry you feel that way. I think we have all been there at some time or another, so please know that this will pass.

a few tips (not law but what has worked for me):

1. Attitude is everything. Looks like you hated every job and found a reason to dislike the work or see the worst in people. Everyone is just trying to earn a living- respect that. The fact that we all do it differently is important because we need poets as much as we need suit salesmen.

2. Be hopeful. Always look for something better.

3. Know that your kids and wife are a gift from God. Thank him every day that you do not have to go through life by yourself.

4. Money is not everything! The more you have, the more you realize it only means the difference between an apt or a beach house and who really cares.

5. GO BUY ANOTHER PORSCHE. Looks like you sold it and this might be the root cause...... ;-)
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Old 05-30-2007, 06:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jim Cesiro
...Some of the best times in my life was when I was young, stupid and poor but I was having a blast having fun. ...
"the journey is the prize" is how I like to view it. As other's have stated, you're in a rut and need a change...now go do it!
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Old 05-30-2007, 07:08 AM
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True, life isn't fair.

But, what do you have?

A family (At least a wife)

An education in engineering

Experience in engineering and sales.

You can put the two together. Insurance and Real estate are true sales jobs, but there are big companies that need B to B sales and need reps that can understand the technical sides of the product they are marketing. You don't need to lie to get a check in that kind of sales job.

Happiness.
The key is not to focus on yourself. There are plenty of successful people that are not happy. Why? Because they focus on themselves. If you concern yourself with others before you concern yourself with you, you will find contentment.

God
We can't make ourselves believe in God, it isn't in us. But if the Holy Spirit works in you then you will be able to believe.
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Old 05-30-2007, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by 72doug2,2S
You can put the two together. Insurance and Real estate are true sales jobs, but there are big companies that need B to B sales and need reps that can understand the technical sides of the product they are marketing. You don't need to lie to get a check in that kind of sales job.
My father-in-law has a degree in electrical engineering. He sells commercial electrical equipement to hospitals, prisons, and other large facilities. There is very little BSing in his job, as the equipment will either work or die a quick and glorious death. His job is more figuring out what equipment the facility needs and whether or not his company makes something that can fill those needs.
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Old 05-30-2007, 07:40 AM
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Life is fair, as long as take responsibility for your choices.

I've f'ed up phenomenal careers because I always wanted something more. I have $0's next to 6 years in my social security statement over the course of 24 since I started working at 15, and for 2 distinct weeks in my 20s and 30s stole food to eat due to start-up or failed entrepreneurial ventures. each one was a learning experience from an ********* partner to the bubble to just not knowing the right people.

Early on in life I thought it wasn't fair that I never got the big break, or wasn't fulfilled in corporate America. I'm sure some amount of brain chemistry is involved but never wanted to medicate it away fearing I would lose too much of myself. Over time I realized that CHOICES dictate who you are, where you want to go, where you are ACTUALLY going, and with whom you go through LIFE.

if you are 42 (sorry, didn't get Superman's reference), my advice would be to sit down by yourself with a pad and pen with 3 columns: Achieve, Preserve, Avoid and start making a list, be honest with yourself and you can't write down too much. Next, prioritize within each column. then show it to your wife and rewrite it, reprioritize it, because you are a team.

From there, create 30 and 90 day plans for your life. 30 should be day by day, 31-90 should be week to week. this plan should have REAL DELIVERABLES.

getting your life in order, by CREATING ORDER, is the first thing you need to do.

BTW, if you think you can do this in your head, you'll fail. Nothing clears the mind like writing things down. Put another way, you have all kinds of things swimming around in your head right now, and your head feels full I bet, very crowded. the only way to allow NEW, PRODUCTIVE thoughts to germinate and grow is to spill out what's in there now.
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Old 05-30-2007, 07:53 AM
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Legion makes a great point. There are technical sales jobs that might be right for you.

There is something to be said for having your next career build on the skills and experience you have gained in both parts of your careers so far. In other words, don't throw away the sales/business experience, find a way to combine it w/ your engineering background. A guy who has both skillsets is valuable.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Shaun 84 Targa
From there, create 30 and 90 day plans for your life. 30 should be day by day, 31-90 should be week to week. this plan should have REAL DELIVERABLES.

PS- Avoid any job that references "deliverables"
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:16 AM
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:18 AM
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Shaun, that's an idea I think I may put to work.....when I get around to it.

Like Jim C., I've been dirt poor and had a great time being that way. I always feel like I'm struggling financially, though looking back, I'm rich compared to how I used to be. It's just that I'm surrounded by such wealth in my job and location that I constantly feel like I'm way behind those folks.

I saw a news report the other night on giant lotto winners. Interesting comment was that if you are an unhappy person before you win, you'll be unhappy after you win, albeit with a fatter bank account. How many horror stories have we all read about with big lotto winners pissing it all away in a few yrs., getting into drugs, depression, etc.?

BTW, I work to live. My job is good, but the money is not. While I would never live on credit, I do like Michael Bloomberg's outlook on good financial planning - live such that your check to the undertaker bounces.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:30 AM
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