Sunday, May 13, 2007

job hunt begins

Even though mid-October is 5 months away, I officially began the hunt for my next employer. I've been looking for the past year, but now have ramped up the search. Last month, I sent my resumé to 2 well-known cosmetic retailers (names and job titles withheld) headquartered in San Francisco. If you're a Bay Area resident that's worked in retail, you'll probably already know who these companies are. Over the weekend, I sent applications out to a former employer and to a division within the City and County of San Francisco.

One of the cosmetic retailers took a month to reply back to me, only with a very short sentence asking me what my salary requirements were. I replied back, asking for $5 to $10K more than what I currently make. I've heard nothing since. The other retailer, I haven't heard anything back. Both retailers have since reposted the positions and changed the job titles. I'm guessing they haven't called me because I am too senior for the positions. This could be very well the same case with my former employer.

Which leads me to thinking that I need to look away from retail. I am also looking at financial service companies or those companies looking for internal audit type positions. I started putting the word out to friends, family and co-workers that I'm looking. If I get offered a position before October, it would have to be one attractive enough for me to forfeit my retention package.

And awaaaaay we go....

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Old Reliables - Eagle Creek & Tevas

This past Friday, REI is holding their anniversary sale. As an REI member, I am eligible for 20% off one full-priced item. For most of yesterday, I looked up and down the REI site to see if there was anything.

Plenty to like, but nothing I really needed or wanted. The closest items were a pair of Tevas and an Eagle Creek women's mini-backpack to replace the one seen in this photo.

Currently, REI offers the Eagle Creek mini-backpack for $35. It comes in 2 colors, tomato and graphite. I decided not to get it because it's smaller and lacks the versatility my current Eagle Creek Matrix pack provides me. The Matrix is smaller and lighter than a standard daypack. But it's large enough to hold my wallet, cell phone, tissues, travel itinerary, prescription meds, toiletries (for weekend/short trips), and most importantly, it's been my carry-on for the past 7-8 years. It's gone with me to London, Seattle, Columbus, Mendocino, Vancouver, San Diego and New York. There is an updated version of the Eagle Creek Matrix at, but my current pack is holding up just fine.

As for the Tevas, they're really old. I bought them at an independent sporting goods store in Marin county sometime in 1992. REI sells several different kinds. The ones that caught my interest are $70. Not a bad price with the 20% discount, but Sierra Trading Post sells a similar pair in the same color for $24.95, still less than REI's even with the discount. But the 15-year old Tevas I currently have are still in decent shape. Most of the bottom tread is still intact. I could replace them, but really don't need to.

Wish I could say the same about my work clothes. I stained my French Blue wrinkle-resistant 3/4 sleeve shirt from Eddie Bauer. It's been one my favorite shirts to wear to work since getting it 3 years ago. After 4 washings and countless pre-soaks, I still can't get the stains completely out. I've since reordered another shirt (using my Eddie Bauer Friends 20% limited time discount). It's backordered until the end of June.