It’s been said that you’re not really part of a new #dev team until you break something user-facing. Today I achieved that milestone. Whoops.
In October of this year – after eight years, six months, and five days with the Bodleian Libraries – I’ll be leaving for pastures new. Owing to a combination of my current work schedule, holidays, childcare commitments and conferences, I’ve got fewer than 29 days left in the office.Instead, I’ll be starting work with Automattic Inc.. You might not have heard of them, but you’ve definitely used some of their products, either directly or indirectly. Ever hear of WordPress.com, WooCommerce, Gravatar or Longreads? Yeah; that’s the guys.
I’m filled with a mixture of joyous excitement and mild trepidation. It’s mostly the former, thankfully, but there’s still a little nervousness there too. Mostly it’s a kind of imposter syndrome, I guess: Automattic have for many, many years been on my “list of companies I’d love to work for, someday”, and the nature of their organisation means that they have their pick of many of the smartest and most-talented geeks in the world. How do I measure up?
It’s funny: early in my career, I never had any issue of imposter syndrome. I guess that when I was young and still thought I knew everything – fuelled by a little talent and a lot of good fortune in getting a head-start on my peers – I couldn’t yet conceive of how much further I had to go. It took until I was well-established in my industry before I could begin to know quite how much I didn’t know. I’d like to think that the second decade of my work as a developer has been dominated by unlearning all of the things that I did wrong, while flying by the seat of my pants, in the first decade.
I’m sure I’ll have lots more to share about my post-Bodleian life in due course, but for now I’ve got lots of projects to wrap up and a job description to rewrite (I’m recommending that I’m not replaced “like-for-like”, and in any case: my job description at the Bodleian does not lately describe even-remotely what I actually do), and a lot of documentation to bring up-to-date. Perhaps then this upcoming change will feel “real”.
I received an interesting text message from my ex-girlfriend Reb today. It read:
I was thinking, you know how you used to say i could have your diaries when you died. can i still? not that i wish you dead or anything, i was just wondering.
Yeh; sure – it sounds like you love me to pieces, my dear. This, interestingly, is the latest in a short string of text messages, including one that asked if I had any pornographic videos (I asked why she wanted to know, to which she didn’t respond), and one which asked if I ever missed talking to her (I responded to say “Rarely, and briefly.”).
And let’s just get this straight: “not that i wish you dead or anything”. What kind of person says something like that? I’m not sure whether I’m to be scared or amused!
What’s going on in her mind? Suggestions welcome.