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24 entries from July 2010

Habitat for Humanity named No. 8 on the Builder 100 List

ATLANTA (July 14, 2010) – Habitat for Humanity achieved the rank of No. 8 on the Builder 100 list with 5,294 closings, marking the first time it has been among the top 10 biggest homebuilders in the United States. The list also shows Habitat moved up three spots in 2009 from its 2008 ranking of No. 11.


First time they cracked the Top 10. Pretty slick achievement.

A little perspective

This morning I returned to work for the first time in 17 days. I’ve been in Hawai’i most of this month, a six-day vacation on Maui followed by an 11-day Habitat for Humanity build trip on Moloka‘i.

I was struck by the inanity of my reactions to a few things as I started the workday.

First, the bit of SQUEE when my badge worked to let me into the building, and then into my secured workspace. No reason it shouldn’t have worked, but it’s always nice when you return from an absence and you can still get into the office.

Second, someone stole my chair. I’m using a different chair that isn’t quite right, does not have the adjustments just the way I was accustomed before I left.

Next, my monitors are at the wrong height, and I can’t seem to get them where I want them to be despite wrestling with the adjustment arm half a dozen times in the hour I’ve been here so far.

My work email had 7,000 unread items in it, and Outlook is still yakking with the Exchange server to synchronize and index everything. So I can’t search or sort mail effectively yet.

And now I’m delayed in my work by an network credential that expired and I have updated, but has not propagated fully through my primary domain. I can’t connect to any network resources right now.

All of which seems absurdly important on the one hand—how am I supposed to get anything done if my primary communication methods aren’t working the way I need?—and laughably stupid on the other, because I just spent 11 days helping to build a house for a family who had been waiting more than 20 years for permission to build on their own land because a government bureaucracy kept dragging its feet and piling delays at every turn.

A few hours’ wait for my email to sync and index and my network login upate to propagate?

Totally okay with it now.

Papered and windowed

The sealer wrap and window installations have been our main tasks today. This photo shows the house’s northeast corner (the back door is on the right).

Tyvek wrap and windows in place

I only learned how to hang windows at 08:00 and by 11:45, I was leading a team of five as we installed the northwest window on the far right in the photo.

We’re also hanging siding on the south (front) side of the house.

Moving along nicely!

I hate this type of bullshit marketing

Got home today, retrieved the mail.

Found this vaguely alarming-looking item:

Official-looking notice from Consumer Reports
I am a Consumer Reports subscriber, but online only. I prefer to keep the paper out of my house, and it’s easier to search for ratings and product info online than by rooting through old magazines.

One of those rip-off-the-edges types of things. So rip off I did, and I found this:

Damnable marketers!
It doesn’t say what the benefits on my account are, so I went to the site and found....

It’s an offer to subscribe to the print magazine for a year, a buck an issue.

Seems skeezy for a consumer organization like Consumer Reports to resort to this type of marketing in an attempt to maintain or increase their print subscriber base.

But it’s nice they admonish me to recycle the notice, even as they’re asking me to contribute to paper waste by subscribing to their print magazine when I’m already an electronic subscriber.