I’ve been encouraged to apply for this job at UCAR in the research applications group. It would involve managing real-time meteorological data for the FAA. Ingest. Re-organize. Excrete. Databases and GIS. Systems integration. Source control. I’m probably qualified for it. It would probably pay well. It would be a ten minute bike ride from downtown, with good healthcare and retirement benefits. Except. But. However.
I’m not inspired. Flying is already ridiculously safe. We shouldn’t be putting any resources into trying to make it safer. They’d be better deployed in the service of bikes and pedestrians. Flying is unethical. It’s not something everyone can do. It’s one of the forbidden things. It represents a large chunk of the average American’s power consumption. It enables crappy, distributed, wandering social circles with no cohesion. Long distance families. The ghosts of friendships past. It’s wonderful too of course, for crossing oceans and exploring far off lands, but it doesn’t really get used for that much. It’s business trips and package tours. Six nights and seven days, all inclusive. Someone should start a black-market cruise line. Cushy container living. Oakland-Singapore in 3 weeks. Unlimited checked baggage, but you better bring a book. Or ten. Plus food, water, and oxygen. They already provide power hookups for the refrigerated boxes. Surely this is a deviant economic opportunity.
But maybe I could move into something else at UCAR. Eventually. Soon? Are they really going to start a climate adaptation group? Who pays for that? The re-insurance industry? Or would I end up bugging out and biking to Argentina once I had a psychological cash pad. Not that there’d be anything wrong with that. From my point of view anyway.
Why do there seem to be so many more opportunities to do useless or evil things, and get rewarded handsomely for it? Are they buying off your conscience? If it was good, would you have to be paid to do it? Is that really the economy we’ve built? I don’t want to believe it. I don’t believe it. But it takes some will.
Benevolent bicycle propagandist? How well does that pay? Open source transit software developer? Energy efficiency modeler? GE pays negative $2.3 billion in taxes while the Federal government kills every PACE program in the country.
The NSIDC data monkey job finally got filled. Or deleted. I didn’t really want to watch the icecaps melt anyway. Not even in a professional capacity. Meanwhile I submitted a paper to JGR Planets for publication on… whatever. All the NASA flagship missions got
canceled de-funded anyway. So good to know I’m not the only one who doesn’t care.
Will Bryan really head off on his round the world tour come summer? If someone asked me to roll south under my own power into Old New Spain, would I really say no?