Once again on this Saturday for Sunday's blog, I'll be writing my recollection on my experience with IT. Hopefully y'all liked the previous three blog posts and this one. Here's a link to last week's blog post: Pro Black Nerdy? (weekly recollection).
As you can guess it was raining today and I have a love/hate relationship with rain. I love watching the rain fall from my cozy bed wrapped in my electric blanket watching reruns of throwback 90s sitcoms or movies. When I was younger I loved dancing in the rain, as a 23-year-old adult if I have to go out in the rain, my love for it turns into hate. I hate being out rushing and bustling here and there and trying to dodge getting wet even with an umbrella. I hate the sound of cars splashing through puddles and being hypervigilant hoping that the splash doesn't hit me. I hate being delayed because something as basic as water can detour my plans. Lastly, I've never seen rain occur during a sunny, hot, no clouds in the sky day. It turns the whole atmosphere gray and at the most dark like the beginning scene to a horror movie set. Simply put, Vie out in the rain equals mad with little to no patience. Vie inside while rain equals happy and very snugged with little to no patience. So I woke up at 10:00 A.M. to my Adams Family theme song going off (yes all my alarms have the Adams Family theme song). I wasn't feeling it, and a quick thought ran through my head like what if I don't go to class today and as soon as the thought ended the little voice in my head said you better get out this bed and get ready for class. Being in one of those moods where you have to prep yourself out of bed, I rolled over to my side and closed my eyes mentally estimating when it'll be 10:10 A.M. so I can get up. I slowly crawled out of bed to exercise my hygienic practices. By 10:45 A.M. I was pretty much together with my outfit and my minimal makeup appliance when I remembered I needed to resend my Twitter links to retweet blogger pages because what's the point of having a blog if you're the only one who knows it? It's 11:05 A.M. and I'm racing against time trying to remember what to bring to class as well as how to strategically resend these tweets without getting a Twitter message telling me they think I'm a robot and they've put a pause to my account because I'm being a determined entrepreneur.
I'm copying and pasting like no one's business praying that'll beat the time as well as swerve the Twitter holds that surely would kill my vibe. It's 11:17 and I'm done but two minutes ago I should have been out the house, no worries because, well, I was tired and the fucks I could have given went out the window with the rain. I get to the shuttle bus area because once again like the last two times there's repairing going on with the subway system. What I find funny is they have money for flat screen monitors in between the tracks that give you the weather, what President Obama has been up to and whatever else. They have money for construction and repairing, but they want passengers to pay fare increases. Last time I checked, I did not vote yay for flat screens in the Downtown Boston station but I digress . . . By the looks of it, I thought I missed the bus and that another bus was going to take forever to come because of the rain which started scratching at my nerves. This lady coming up the street looking real destitute asks me if the bus was heading to Harvard Square. I felt my face acting up in a sarcastic manner because if the sign right ahead of her read shuttle bus to Harvard Sq and the same sign in the middle of the road read, shuttle bus to Harvard Sq why is she asking me the obvious? Now before you think I'm a horrible person with a funky attitude, it's not that I didn't want her talking to me, it's that I hate when people state the obvious. The two signs and the MBTA automatic intercom that tells passengers every day what's the upcoming change for the MBTA confirmed her question. Why ask me? I had my music blaring loud like I was deaf, that's how I usually am secretly hoping my young decisions don't haunt me when I'm decrepit from age. I nodded my head giving her an expressionless face almost regretting that I didn't point to the sign and ignore her answer. Five minutes later the bus pulls up and some random MBTA worker directs people to mush together on the bus to make room for all the passengers. I wasn't with the body to body contact and I wasn't going to push up someone on or let someone push up on me. We finally get to moving after the MBTA worker does his final check and determines the bus is in fact packed to capacity. The ride took longer than usual, not too long but traffic was kind of heavy. Arriving at Harvard Sq there were, at least, four men standing as guides to answer designation questions for passengers as well as a barricade in front of the to Alewife pathway. I kind of understood why they did that but you'd have to be an idiot to go through all that rerouting because the inbound is blocked off to then try your luck at the same blocked off direction just a different station. Yet if they didn't I bet there would be a few people chilling there asking why hasn't the train arrived it's been 30 minutes now. But again I digress . . .
Three minutes after walking up the ramp an Ashmont train pulls up which I'm ecstatic for because I hate waiting. Just that, nothing really special just that I can get a move on with my trip. Inside the train the conductor waits like ten minutes which irks my nerves because it wasn't the last train, more trains would be arriving after him, even Ashmont trains so why try to catch every passenger coming when there's already passengers inside? Eight minutes into the halt the conductor comes on the intercom and says a real corny line like "Your conductor for today is name Tony because he's greeeat!" Part of me chuckled and smile because it was adorkable. Finally, the train door closes and we ride out. At Ashmont station waiting for the trolley I again was pissed by the whether, not so much the rain but I felt like GOD, HAARP, or plain 'ole Mother Nature was playing tricks on me because just Friday it was hot and muggy like short shorts and maybe a light sweater. Then the next day it's nip and wet like who does that? Ten minutes later the trolley pulls up and I glance at the time on my cellphone, it wasn't anywhere close to 12:30, perhaps 12:10 at the most which I wasn't complaining about. The train ride was peaceful like it always is. The only public transportation ride that won't irritate you. Twenty minutes later I arrived at Mattapan Station. I quickly speed walked to class because like most people my thought was if I increase my motion, I can somehow walk between the drops and avoid getting wet. Walking up the street I pass American Food Basket (for those who aren't Bostonians or are Bostonians but aren't from the Caribbean nor Black it's a grocery store). On the side of the building there's a beautiful mural of Black buyers and sellers in a countryside maybe the Caribbean. They're just being, existing, possibly the average life at a market. I passed American Food Basket a gazillion times but never stopped to stare at the mural. Today I took a picture of it capturing all its beauty (if you follow me on IG vieis_me you've seen it, shameless plug I know). If you're an inner-city Bostonian the mural is similar to the Tropical Food's mural in Dudley. Besides writing my new thing is playing junior photographer on my Samsung Note 4. The pictures aren't anywhere as crispy as the Nokia Lumia 1520, but you know . . . I digressed didn't I?
I get to the porch of where my IT classes are held at and I see two notes on the door and I can feel my irksome bubbling at the bottom of my petty gut. The note basically said no one is home due to an early morning meeting and class will resume as normal when they get back. I wouldn't be upset if for the fact it wasn't raining. I could have waited and sat on the steps, well not actually sit on the dirty steps but you know what I mean. But what absolutely pushed me into dangerous levels of pettiness was I had 30 minutes to spare. I was 30 minutes early in the cold wet weather. That pissed me off, and I tried being early because the first day didn't make me feel good. I never was a fan of stereotypes and CP time never been something I wanted to attach to my reputation. Let me be early than late or let the person I'm meeting with hold that L, not me. A part of me was like I could just hop back on the train and go back home but the small voice that's attributed to the conscious was like nah. So I stayed there standing under my light purple umbrella with an emboldened resting bitch face that had a hint of fuck off. As normal I randomly searched through the Samsung dialer (that fails to truly gather my musical taste and on the fourth skip it just keeps playing the same songs I liked three months ago but now can't stand). I heard a bit of Jazmine 'I bust the windows out your car' Sullivan's song "Let It Burn" and not to my surprise, it was great! Then I wondered what happened to her, she had a major hit and had major buzz but sort of fell off. Twenty-ish minutes later I see the porch lights turn on and I'm shocked like is someone home or did someone call the cops on me thinking I'm some kind of burglar. Did IDT call Darren Willson and Daniel Pantaleo? Am I finna die? Five minutes later the professor answers the door and I greet him. Being the first one in the class I take my usual seat and get to working. I pull out my notes that truthfully I haven't studied the way I should because my baby (MEMOIRS OF A FORGOTTEN CHILD ebook self-published by me available NOW!) takes 90% of my time as well as daily blogs and weekly blogs but if there's anything I know it's the connectors and cables. On the table were several open cases with the motherboard, CPU, power supply, hard drive, memory card, and optical drive sitting there ready to be unscrewed and screwed. I took the opportunity to test my connector knowledge.
The class fills in to about half of what it was compared to the weeks before. Last week we were stuffed like shells and today we could lounge around. I wasn't the only one who noticed seeing that the Professor commented something like, "What happen to the class?" The Diddy reminder (see last week's blog for why I call him that) says, "It's raining." The Professor wasn't hearing it, honestly me neither because I hiked from another city to class in the rain on public transportation, whatever the excuse was isn't good enough. We jumped into removing all the cables and connectors, as well as the computer hardware that was attached to the motherboard, basically the same thing I was flustered by on the first day but today I felt extra confident on some Zena Warrior Princess shit. I knew the components he was talking about as well as how to remove them. Before giving us the green light he reminded us about electric static discharge from our body to the computer that can ruin certain parts (For the non-techie, basically you wouldn't want your body's electricity to mess up the computer's electricity causing a shock like when you rub your hands and touch something. You could damage a hardware that you'll have to replace with your own money). The Professor further expounded on how on this rainy day ESD occurs frequently. I took my Handy Manny screwdriver and got to nerding. In about ten minutes I disconnected everything and unscrewed the motherboard. Impressed with my skills I did a little internal happy dance then the Professor instructed us to place all the components back into the case. I wasn't a pro at that but my memory skills were on point so I knew even if I didn't grasp everything on the first try that I wouldn't panic because I would know the area that it belonged to also the pins give it away. A total of fifteen to twenty minutes, I had connected everything and felt good about my work that I called the Professor to verify it. He did and I sat there geeked. There was a guy beside me checking my case as if I didn't know what I was doing, lowkey I was like 'Worry about yourself.' He pulls several connectors and notices one was kind of lose yet fit the socket. He tells me that one is wrong and I'm like it has the same number of pins as the socket holes plus when I received the computer it was connected like that. He tells me his opinion and I let it roll off my back because I knew what I was doing, plus the Professor checked it out, on top of that it was connected like that before I messed with it.
The Professor engages us in different acronyms and materials we should know and I really knew half of them but when I get to class it's like we're waiting for someone else to answer or I'm like memory blank where I can't remember the right answer. The Professor keeps us enlightened with his stories and comparisons to the brain and heart. Without electricity (the heart) memory (the brain) can't function. He related how memory is volatile to Steeve Job's intelligence and technology, how after his death people wanted to save his brain but without a pulse the brain is dead. He said a few words that were deep saying that the only thing you own is your brain, once it's gone no one can access it or your thoughts. We moved on to how computers are rapidly changing the way we live as a society and how everything has to be fast. The speed of light was the measurement but now it's the speed of sound. He made an example of how we can see light in the room but outside people can't see our lights. If there was a big sound depending on how big it was Braintree could hear it, maybe the Cape. All at once we'd be able to hear the same sound because that's how fast sound travels. He also mentions how America is based on greed and how it makes people greedy which I agree, we want to be the best at something sacrificing others who are just as good. If we like something we have no qualms buying the owner out or killing him/her. Somehow we veered into some more Pro Black Nerdy which I ENJOY! If you know me, you know I can talk about Black issues anytime anyplace *Janet Jackson voice*. The Professor talks about how he started the IT program because he was tired of seeing the field dominated by Asians and Whites and Blacks being purposely held back by the lack of knowledge. At first, he wanted to do it for free while everyone he knew was like charge the people, one of his colleagues suggested $2,000. He rebutted because he knew the area he was trying to serve doesn't have $2,000. Someone at a reputable college, no names but starts with a B tried to sabotage him by having people sign up for his classes making it full for the semester and after the first week, they wouldn't show up. The Professor would be thinking what happened to the students? When in actuality they were paid oppositions to bar Blacks from enrolling into the class. One woman who participated in the shenanigans called the Professor to apologize and warn him of the B college's plotting and scheming, their whole thing was racism and money (ain't it always).
The class chimed in as always, we being mostly Black with one Hispanic or Middle Eastern guy. We supported his claims and acknowledged what he goes through because let's face it, as Blacks we can understand the Black troubles on some psychic shit. You come home with a long face and your wife already knows, we don't have to ask because we get it like how Black women wrap their hair before going to sleep, we get it. Tyrone will never ask why, because Tyrone, Keisha, Big Momma and Pookie all know, it's a universal Black thing. The Black struggle is universal. The B college wanted people to spend a crazy amount of money to get an education with them BUT not a grade A education because they still want to dominate the field. Just like with ITT Tech. Yes, that school with the daytime commercials is about to close down because of the horrible teaching practices coupled with extreme debt. People who have a degree from them will be rendered useless and their degree valueless. How do you become a computer technician yet during your education you never touched a computer (insert Kanye How meme)? That wasn't the worst I guess, recently the same B college hired some middle of the corn field White guy whose closest experience relating to the hood is watching Boyz In The Hood. This guy has the audacity to remove fliers advertising the Professor's IT program. The Professor caught wind of this and a few Black boys took it upon themselves to post some fliers to bait Corn Field Carl. They watched the fliers to see what would happen after posting and Corn Field Carl took the bait. The Black boys approached him on some who sent you type vibe and the Corn Field Carl got shook, to the point of pissing in his pants.
Professor's commitment to educating his people and his trials and errors to get the small nonprofit started made me admire him. I don't go around admiring people all willy-nilly, most people I can tolerate but true admiration quality is to remove self from the equation for the better good on some altruism shit. He also spoke about how people come to him on some sneak creep like 'hey let me buy you dinner or hey let me do x,y, z' but really trying to sweet talk him into a partnership. We finished the class with project management aka stay true to your word aka word is bond. This means if you are given the task to complete a task on a date, by a specific time, on a specific budget, you better meet the criteria or else you failed. Your reputation in the field is important. If you are given parts to buy to build a computer, research the parts for their exact pricing before giving a customer a quote because if you quote $1,400 and then you go to the store and forgot to add tax and possibly shipping you can't make the customer forfeit more many. That's an L you're going to have to eat. But in the field you typically charge whatever the quote is plus 40% of the quote just to cover extra needed supplies like screws or sales tax etc. If you feel like writing a check back to the customer because you've done the work for $150 bucks and the 40% of the quote wasn't spent, do so but remember your reputation as a quality IT is dire. Time is money. The Professor gives us an example of a Christmas party he planned and had catered. The caterer estimated that each person should pay $20 for their plate. She would cook the meals for each person with that fixed pricing. Long story short for $20 bucks half the people got to eat and she was charging them for soda that was listed in the fixed pricing. Needless to say, she's not in business and her reputation is soiled. Before we exited, which I really was looking forward to doing because I was yawning up a storm, the Professor explains next week's assignment which is to install the Windows software. I've done it before on my old desktop that bless its heart, made it thick and thin with me and my reckless downloading.
He advised us not to be scared because most students take installing Windows more seriously than it is like he did when he first started working for Google (FYI you know if you have a contract with Dell they'll pay you $99 bucks off top? You, the boss can pay your technician anywhere between $25 to $35 dollars to go in the field to fix a computer. This is anything from switching out a power supply or troubleshooting.) he was such a nervous wreck that he was seeing data when he closed his eyes. Something that piqued my interest that I couldn't let go was where do viruses and bugs come from, computer viruses and bugs that is. He tells us in a long intricate, slightly humorous fashion (but I'll keep it short because if you really read this blog down to this point you are the real MVP because it's running long huh?) that amateur people with no software experience nor real education create software then post it on the internet for free, we the cheap and gullible (been there done that, that's why I appreciate my Mac!) download these software that don't really work and they attach to a file and fucks that file up because its coding is wrong. This is what causes the system to not work altogether and the only relief is to either partition the hard drive and format (saving all data first of course) OR start clean with reinstalling Windows, either way, the process will be aggy as fuck. Oh did I mention we had another in class test to figure out what is what on the motherboard? We were allowed to talk to each other for help and I'd say 85% of the answers I got right and 90% if I wrote the right names and not the name I call it by. As a class, the Professor asked for our answers which he was impressed we knew. For a nontechie, my tech level is increasing and the lingo is just rolling off the tongue. Soon I'll be going to Comic Con and doing the Vulcan salute . . . Nah (insert Lisa's reaction from Coming To America meme when asked if she wants to give up the throne of Zamunda).
Be Entertained. Be Enlightened. Be Loved. ✌