New Job

Many of you have heard I got a new job. I thought I would share a little about it. The hiring company is L-3 Communications and the team I am working with is located on a former Air Force Base which is now Mesa-Gateway Airport. Across from the airport is a Fighter Pilot Training Research Facility where three companies (L-3, Boeing and Lockheed Martin) share a defense contract with the Air Force. I had interviewed for one job that involved research for using the Wii and other video games to create training for Allies. That sounded fun but I didn’t get the job. I didn’t match the skill set but they liked me so they called me back for another position. The interview went well but months passed and I still hadn’t heard. I pestered them as much as I could without being too much of a pest. It must have been the right amount because out of the blue last week I got an email asking if I was still available. I’m almost always available. Especially if it means less of a commute and working on something interesting.

My goal is to break a record and stay at this job for at least 2 years. I used to think it was the jobs and the companies that were the problem but I’m starting to wonder if I’m the problem. Honestly, I like to learn new things and the thought of doing the same thing year after year scares me. A younger co-worker wanted me to write him a recommendation on LinkedIn and so I did and he was surprised to see so many recommendations on my profile as well as jobs. He said something like, “You’ve had 3 jobs in 3 years?” By the way he said it, I felt like I had to explain myself to him. I resisted correcting him by stating that with this new job it would make 5 in three years. That does sound pretty bad. I can justify each change in my mind but if I keep this up it will probably get harder and harder to explain to interviewers. My strategy is to not disclose every job on my resume and that has seemed to work just fine. What if I built a resume with every job?
  1. Building large graphic laminators at Axiom Graphics
  2. McDonald’s Cashier
  3. Recycling Plant Laborer
  4. Crop Dusting – Loading planes with fertilizer and pesticides
  5. Roof Inspector
  6. Demolition and Asbestos Removal
  7. Landscaping
  8. Carpet Cleaning
  9. Dish Washer
  10. Teaching Assistant
  11. Research Assistant
  12. Computer Engineering Intern at Intel
  13. Software QA Manager at WiLife (now Logitech)
  14. Webmaster/Online Sales and Marketing at WiLife
  15. Software Engineer for Video Game Startup
  16. Software Quality Engineer for University of Phoenix
  17. Software Engineer at L-3 Communication
I think that’s all of them. 17 official jobs where I was on payroll. Let’s do the math. 17 jobs in 9 years (not including 2 year mission). Makes it about 6 months per job! I’ve had a lot of bosses and coworkers, a wide variety of work environments and interesting stories with most of the jobs I’ve had. Like the time I got cussed out by a crop duster when I splashed a few drops of fuel on his windshield. Boy, was he ever mad. I’ve had hundreds of interviews. Believe it or not, I haven’t accepted every job offer given to me. Amazing, I know! Just in the past 3 years I’ve turned down at least 3 job offers. I need to write a book. “How to get a job in 10 days” … or “How to lose a job in 10 days”. I’ve never been fired. I did get sent home once from the asbestos job and I thought I was fired but ended up staying. I don’t have any regrets and I look forward to the new experiences to come.

Oh what do you do in the summertime?


Do you have long scary fingers?

Does your dad dress you up in your brothers clothes?

Do you spin kids in a chair?
Do you wear a cute apron?

Do you play in the shade because the other rocks are too hot?

Do you make a cool rocket launcher and launch some great rockets?


(Sorry it doesn’t rhyme, I’m really not that creative… well, actually I didn’t want to spend that much time thinking about it!)

Summer Fun!

It was a fun day today at swim lessons – it was raining a little bit, which was great! We’ll take rain any day here! We started swim lessons on Monday. After the first 3 days, I am thoroughly impressed! Little Lacey has learned how to close her mouth to go under water, then flip over and float by herself on her back, and also to reach for the wall and monkey walk over to the step. Pretty impressive! We’ve got about 5 days left and its great to see the progress she’s already made. She hardly cries – every time when she gets out it seems like she’s pretty proud of the work she’s just done and what she’s learning. I think Geri is a baby whisperer… She’s the best!

Monkey walks to the step to get out
Jackson is a pro. He can move around the water, but is definitely improving his kicks and arms. He hates floating, so they’ve been working on that too. He loves swim lessons! What a good boy!
Jackson can’t get enough of the water!
Last weekend Jackson got to go to his first Father’s and Sons! What a blast! He came home as dirty as ever and just wanted to hang out with Dad the rest of the weekend. He was so happy to go sleep in a tent with Dad!
Posted by Picasa

Avtech Video Surveillance

I’ve started a business called Avtech Consulting. I’m starting with selling video surveillance systems to businesses. They are from WiLife (my previous employer) but they don’t use power lines to transmit video. They use regular network cables and thus are more reliable and require a professional installation. One of WiLife’s resellers and a former co-worker have created a successful business model where they sell these systems nationwide and hire IT professionals to install them. They are WiLife’s top reseller. Check them out at

They recently sold 13 systems to a Great Clips franchise owner in Ohio. They also have a niche market for mall kiosks

They had contacted me at the end of last year to help them with their website and I have been learning more about how their business and rare success in the down economy. I asked them about how I should go about selling the systems and they are developing a sort of franchise model where they provide the product, services, support and some marketing and I sell the systems for a split of the profit. Since I know the product well and have experience with online marketing I figured it was worth a shot.

I threw a site together this week (it is a good start but there will be many improvements and additions to come) and will begin marketing the site. If you know anyone that is interested in surveillance for their home or business send them the link. This product is perfect for anyone that operates more than one business location or wants to protect against theft, law suits, etc. Some insurance companies will even give discounts if you install surveillance in your business. You can also post a link to it on your blog and that will help. Use “Avtech Surveillance” as the link term.

Growing a Beard

I’ve always had a nagging desire to grow a beard. I think most men have a point in their life where they just want to see how they look with facial hair. I’ve never really had a good excuse to grow one though and, although I have gone a few days without shaving and had some thick stubble, I’ve never really let my facial hair grow for more than a few days.

This weekend was the Varsity Scout Territorial Rendezvous and I finally had a lame excuse to grow a beard. I made a quick decision to stop shaving two weeks ago and figured I’d only have two Sundays where I wasn’t clean shaved. I should have started a few days earlier but oh well. The first week very few people noticed or made any comments. The second week, after a full week of growth I got plenty of comments and compliments. I also got one or two glares of disapproval. My young men liked the hair and at one point one of them even asked if he could touch it! I got called Brigham, Jedediah, and rebel. I also got asked what calling I was trying to avoid.

The experience was fun. The best part was seeing people’s reactions. I don’t usually seek attention but every once in a while I like to do something out of the ordinary and keep people on their toes. Those who know me well know what I’m talking about. The beard wasn’t too itchy. Sarah did complain that it was “poky” but as it got longer she got a little more used to it. Most of the time I didn’t even know it was there unless I looked in the mirror or got a surprised look or comment from acquaintances. I thought I looked halfway decent with a beard but it wasn’t as good as I hoped it would be. There are several sections of my face where the hair is blond and, from a distance, you couln’t even tell there was hair. I would need to grow it long and shave the mustache and other blond sections so I could be as manly as Brigham Young.

I am glad to have my semi-smooth face back and so is Sarah. I couldn’t help but shave it off in sections to see how I would look with different beard styles.