May 27 2018

This should not be “a thing”

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 1:01

It should be illegal for a site to provide you a trial membership, but to ask for a credit card, that will be used automatically to pay the membership in case you do not cancel it. This happened to me with Audible. I tried their service, for then minutes, then forgot all about it. The credit card I set up for them got blocked a few weeks ago because of an incident, but being an Amazon company, they decided to bill me this month, because I forgot to cancel the bloody subscription and used the credit card I had registered at Amazon. :|

I know that you pay for your stupidity, I just did. But it seems a little perverse and mean, to provide a service as a trial, but then not even send am email to the user to remind him or her, that they will be billed for it, even if they liked it or not, unless they cancel their subscription. This is also cruel, because maybe within 30 days since I subscribed for that trial, if I would have ended up in the position where those 14$ would be the last money I have,  instead of just buying food for me and my cat, I would have just gotten the wonderful opportunity to listen to books.

Services like this should not be allowed to exist. What good is GDPR if my lack of attentiveness can be exploited?

In a fair world, I would be allowed to try the service and then make a decision for myself if I want to pay for it or not. The fact that I decided to pay for it would be an acknowledgement of the quality/utility of that service as well. Otherwise, is just this big company fooling me into paying for a service that I barely had the time to evaluate and definitely do not have the time for. Because I do think Audible is a great idea and it is really practical, but not for me. And I just got tricked into paying subscription for a month, after the trial ended.

And I repeat, I accept the fact that I payed for my stupidity, but it doesn’t make me feel any better. And if I ever have time for a service like the one Audible is offering, in the future I will not choose Audible just because of this incident.

The conclusion of this post: just pay very much attention with services that promise you free stuff during the trial period. It might not be so free after all.

So, -1 vote from me Audible/Amazon. I just cancelled my subscription.

Stay safe, stay happy!


May 26 2018

GDPR Stuff

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 9:35

Every company that ever got its hands on my data, is telling me that they either are keeping it safe or they are asking me to confirm I still want they to keep it, or remove it.  I’ve also seen a few bloggers saying they are modifying their own installation of wordpress to implement GDPR specs. And while reading all this GDPR spam, because this is what this is, I thought maybe I should say something as well.

The only personal data I have is data users have provided themselves when posting comments. To post a comment on this site, you only need to provide a username and an email. No email is sent to you for confirmation and their validity is not checked so you can be as creative as you want. ;)

I will not modify wordpress or start deleting the database with comments from this site. My blog is not a business, I do not sell anything and I do not need your personal data. Thus I do not sell it nor use it to analyze you and try to sell you stuff you have a bigger tendency to buy.  Nevertheless if you decide to use your real name and email when commenting and decided to check that check box because you want to receive notifications when somebody else comments on the same blog entry, you will receive those emails. Your data is safe with me, it is stored on an AWS instance, that can only be accessed through SSH from a computer I configured, before connecting to it. Publicly on this site, only the username you used to comment with is visible, so if you decided at some point in the past to comment using your real name and are worried about it, please send me an email to delete your comment or edit the username.

WordPress and Amazon have already updated their privacy policy regarding storing and handling of personal data as well.

Sure, I will add a page explaining you in a formal matter all this GDPR stuff, I am forced by law to do it after all. But rest assured, anything that you did not decide to make public on this blog through comments, won’t be made public and the data you provide (username and email) will never be given to a third party.

I hope I was able to put your mind at ease.

Stay safe, stay happy!

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May 19 2018

Names rage

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 16:14

Every person has a button that if it gets pushed too many times, at the lightest touch, they snap. For me that button is my name, actually is how other people spell my name. My name is Iuliana Cosmina, with big “C” and big fucking “I”.  It should be obvious when I send an email, or complete a form, that people write their names with fucking capital letters. That should be obvious for any sane and intelligent adult, right? WRONG.

Since I declared myself eligible for a new job on LinkedIn, a lot of recruiters have contacted me.  You have no idea how many of them salute me with “Hi Luliana”, yes, with an “L”. First time it happened, I brushed it off. Different nationalities, you know? Second time it nagged me a little. Third time, I actually made a comment out loud about it. Forth time, I ignored the message of that recruiter altogether.

I mean, really, wtf people? Why do you think I would write my first name with a small caps letter? Why would you fucking think that??? I always recommend myself as Iuliana Cosmina, if I bother to write the second name with capital “C”, don’t you think the first is capital “I” ??

What is the logic  behind it really? If you are not sure, ask, or just use bloody copy paste and copy the name from the resource you are using.

I have colleagues originating in the most diverse countries and I rarely misspelled their names, you know why? Because I respect people enough to learn their names.

Yeah, this is my first blog-snap because of this subject. I really did not want to write about it, because one of the guys messing up my name might read this and feel offended. But you know what? Feel offended all you want, I feel offended by your carelessness, your dismissal and your lack of respect. So if you read this, after you finish feeling offended, please just fucking  grow up and do your job properly.  Because you probably missed the chance of recommending me to the company that you represent and you might also have missed the big bonus you would have gotten if I would have gotten the job. And I would have gotten the job. ;)

Stay safe, stay happy!

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May 19 2018

On hating the boss

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 11:20

I am known to be a blunt person. Diplomacy does not come natural to me, and I treat others the same I expect to be treated. And I am quite resilient, and used to blunt talk, after all I’m a woman engineer in a domain of mostly men. So if I’m doing something wrong, please tell me and give me the proper arguments so maybe I can understand why you think that and I reach the same conclusion. I am a blunt person, because I do not like wasting time. Telling me a story, wrapping up negative feedback in fancy words annoys me. In a professional environment I expect that there are rules I must follow and that my tasks are specified clearly. Sure, there should be room for creativity and innovation, but almost any job is defined by a set of clearly defined activities. I need the boundaries specified clearly, because it is in my interest as well to respect them.

There is nothing that makes me more uncomfortable than hearing “You are doing a great job, and to do even better you have to improve the following…”. Sure, the magical but was avoided, but in my mind it is there, because you just told me that I need to get better, thus, the conclusion is that I am not good enough. And no human being wants to feel inadequate at their job.

I go for and prefer the direct way. If you managed to get the job, you are an adult and expect to be treated like one. Sure, it hurts finding out that you are not doing your job as well as you thought you did, but to overcome limitations it is imperative to know them and if you were unable to determine them yourself, just be grateful to the person opening your eyes. It’s ok to feel offended and defensive in the beginning, but after the rage is gone, and after you cried your eyes out, you have new information to help you adjust your plan to get that promotion.

And if you are working in a big company, which seems to have a generic and sort-of abstract review process, and you do not work in the same office with your direct reviewer (lead/manager), be very aware that if you do not keep track of your achievements, nobody else will, and when review time comes, your achievements might be lost through the cracks.

So stop getting offended and hating your bosses(reviewers), unless they are being unfair to you and obviously having something personal against you, all they are doing is making sure the company profit of your work is maximum and they can further justify the budget invested in you to their bosses. Even if you do not feel like an adult most of the times (I know for sure I don’t) just try to act like one.(I know I do)

Stay safe, stay happy!


May 09 2018

Moving on and letting go

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:20

My dear friends we have a problem. As I prepare to move to another city, to another country and start another job, I am getting insomnia thinking of all the things that could go wrong. I am still packing and trying to decide what to leave behind. I am saying goodbye to friends and bleeding money while trying to move everything from Ron to pounds. I just sold my car, that I barely had for a year and a half. And I don’t usually get attached to things, but this car was one of the best investments I ever did. I am happy though, because it is getting some awesome owners that will appreciate it just as much as I do.

The problem that we have is that you see me as this strong, inquisitive, curious and brave person and some of you do not seem to realize how hard this is for me. Because even if I don’t show it properly, because I’m an introvert after all, I am attached to some of you. And it hurts thinking that most probably I will never see many of you again.

And I have to spend two weeks without my cat. And three weeks looking for rent in a country that looks down on Romanian immigrants and uses credit score to decide if you are able to pay rent or not.

And the new job… seems amazing, but amazingly challenging as well. And I am terrified of the culture clashes and the repercussions of me being too blunt and too open and maybe too friendly. Honestly, I don’t know exactly what scares me, I’ve always been good at adapting. Sure between my four walls I will cry in the evening before falling asleep, that is if I can sleep. Because insomnia is one of my oldest friends, that never leaves me alone in challenging times.

And I have a book to write as well and I feel guilty every time I fall behind a page or two.

But saying goodbye to friends is the hardest. Because there are some people that you never think see you as a friend. But they do, it’s just that they have their own life, challenges and responsibilities keeping them busy. And they tend to take you for granted. They always think that there is time. That they will have that beer with you tomorrow or maybe next week. And you think that they are just too busy to see you. They all seem to have so much going on in their lives, that you don’t want to bother them. So we all take each other for granted. You think there is time. That you will maybe meet next week. But you never do. And then somebody moves away, and you realize that you should have bothered them. You should have asked them for a beer, even if rejection hurts. And you should have said yes and got that beer, because who knows what will happen tomorrow.

I am as guilty for taking people for granted just as much as my friends. But I am guilty of being too scared of being rejected. Because if somebody said no to me more than twice, I give up. No need to be a bother, right?

And I am really sorry, I guess I have a long way to go before becoming an adult. I believe after this change I have learned my lesson and do it better next time.

I guess, we’ll just have to wait and see.

Stay safe, stay happy!

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Apr 18 2018

On kids

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 23:58

Last week I was in my home town to baptize my godson. My best friends decided to add me as a family member, so they gave me the honor to be a godmother to their youngest child. I spent the whole week with this 6 month old kid and his 5-years old sister. And their parents kept saying I have potential to be a parent. And it got me thinking.

I’m a self-educated introvert. I did not have the best parents. I mentioned this quite a lot around here. But I am over it. I realized that good or bad, whatever happened to me at their hands it made me the person I am today. I am strong, I am relentless, I am smart and I am driven. There’s a big chance I would not be this person, if my parents would have been more protective, supportive and understanding. Instead I took all my anger, all my disappointment and all my pain and used them as fuel for my willpower. And boy I have a lot of that!

Would I be a good parent? I don’t know. I would probably be better than they were, and this might make my kids weaker than I am. Or maybe not. The truth is, I cannot tell. Only time can tell.

But what I can tell you for sure is that I will adopt. I do not want to risk my body and mind to have my own kids. I will adopt. For multiple reasons. One: we are way too many on this planet already. No need for more people. Second: this will be my “screw you” to this society that allows for people to be born without a chance to a normal life. I will adopt a kid, or two and use the resources I have to give them a fighting chance. I know and I accept that I will probably have to ensure counseling for him or her until adulthood to compensate for their rough start in life. But hey, kids are expensive anyway. ;)

So yeah, you don’t have to worry. I will leave some kind of legacy. I will not fade away silently into nothingness.

Stay safe, stay happy!


Apr 18 2018

End of an era

Category: MiscellaneousIuliana @ 0:06

In 2014 I was crushed into little pieces and all I wanted was for the wind to blow me away. But the wind did not blow me away, it just transported me to a place where I experienced so much personal and professional growth that when I look back at it, I can hardly believe it. Yes, I look back. Because today is was the day when I prepared for taking flight again.

I am excited about the change, but I am terrified at the same time. I am leaving behind a great team, the most awesome mentor that I never even dreamed I would meet and hopefully some friends that I will get to see once in a while.

I just put in my resignation. I am leaving little cozy Sibiu, for the great city of Edinburgh. I am leaving a mountain city, for another mountain city on the coast of the North Sea, I am leaving a continent and moving to a rainy island.

Today it was a cloudy day in Sibiu, just like most people expect for days to be in the UK. It really did not bother me, I have always loved the rain. And yes, the sun might be less visible from Edinburgh, but that will make me treasure more the days when I can see it.

Last year, when I realized I have outgrown this company and this country I was a little scared I would not be able to leave. I am 34 after all, there are some countries (Australia, I think) that do not accept you if you are over 30. But nevertheless, I challenged myself to leave this country until I am 35. I considered 40 at first, but then realized that age is too far away. Finally I have enough money and enough bravery stashed away to do this. Over the years I have been complaining a lot about Romania, maybe it is time to actually have something to compare it to.

If all goes well, by the time I am 40 I will be a UK citizen as well, because this is a long term plan. Moving to another country takes a lot of effort and investment, especially when you really, really want to take a cat with you. And I do. My cat Psihoza, has been with me since 2007, she surpassed the “pet” designation long ago. She is my partner and my dear friend, well as good as a friend a 4 year old can be, because apparently this is the human intelligence a cat can reach. I would say she surpassed that as well, but I’m not cat expert.

There are 42 days left until I will board a plane and then start the struggle of finding a place to rent and navigating through all UK bureaucracy. I’m not looking forward to it, but I will do what I have to do.

I am now awake because I really wanted to write something for my new book, but I’m stuck in such an ugly writers block, that I want to kick myself. I am reading articles and keep hoping it will come to me, while being stressed of the lack o ideas, moving to another country, finishing the last project I am involved at work and while being worried for my cat. “What’s wrong with the cat?” you might be rhetorically asking. Well, because UK has such strict rules when it comes to pet regulation, my cat cannot travel on the same plane with me. So a specialized company must transport it. And they will take her by car, and the ride takes 4 days. 4 days of being in a box, of being let out on a leash just for somebody to clean the box. I am worried of the stress this will put on her and if she is going to reach me and still love me and forgive me for this.

But I guess, I’ll have to wait, hope and see.

Stay safe, stay happy!

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