Seperis (seperis) wrote,

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i find comfort in spreadsheets

An unsettling realization came over me after a glorious day of lots of work and not enough time to do it and madly reading over my scripts and arguing with people about how to word each step.

My laziness seems to be inversely proportional to how much work I am given to do. Today, I was in a good mood because I had actual work. It's a revelation! I have a bad feeling I will walk in tomorrow and try to commandeer the regression project, because it's messy and impossible and will make me cry and I will stop hating life and surfing youtube too much. I mean, I'll hate life, but in a much more active and cheerful way that involves coffee being necessary and railing against the perfidity of government work. I mean, that's fun. Make work is not.

See, here's the best part--we now have to track and itemize our time by what specific government program whatever we are working on relates to so the correct federal departments are billed the right amount. This led to a marvelous hour with Excel and designing an itemized spreadsheet to track my productivity throughout the day. There are three different thicknesses of line and six colors so far and I'm trying to negotiate a way to increase it to four dimensions (arrays yay! No, no idea how the hell I'll do that in Excel) so as to itemize both in amount of time worked and at what time it occurred with blocks set for environments going offline and meetings that directly relate to, but do not necessarily intersect with, above mentioned departments.

I feel less viciously capable of systematic destruction.

Okay. Picture this.

You say to the tech persons--Query for an active case with a single parent, at least one child, and the child receives Medicaid! And lo, bring it forth to me in list form so I may choose one from among many.

For those who are not up with social services, I just asked for air. This is the most common program combination you can get. I can randomly enter a ten digit case and have a pretty good chance of falling over one of these. This is not hard.

So swirl it a little and ask for the same thing, but the mother is on WHP (Women's Health Program). This is like asking for water. It is not hard to find.

So imagine my surprise when they query the database, I get a lot of foster care cases.

Huh, methinks. But a lot of people query, so maybe he just attached the wrong list of cases! I ask again.

I am pleased to note that it expanded to children on Foster Care and the elderly with SSI. A strange and disturbing absence of single parent households. Or like, parents.

Now, so I am only vaguely understanding of the sql. I read up on it in general and our database tables in specific. But I'm thinking--crazy thought--that when one asks for a case with Children's Medicaid, one gets just maybe one of those. By accident, even.

The ways of tech are mysterious.


I need someone to recommend me a nice book that will give me the basics on sql commands for database query. As tomorrow I am going to talk my boss into giving me access and permissions to the database and I have brownies, so he'll break. Then I will pull the decision table hierarchy and discover how anyone can look for a state medicaid case and fall on top of a federally funded SSI and think they are the same thing even though they have this neat clearly labeled code that are kind of deeply different.

I have a plan. I am happy.

Currently Re-Reading

A Modest Proposal by resonant8, dS, Fraser/Kowalski, because I totally feel Ray's sense of determination. Or maybe it's just that damn hot.


ETA: The language spoken above is not so much geek as bureaucratese. Adjust your thinking accordingly.
Tags: jenn's life, recs: due south, work

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