Tales From The Ipe!

I sit by and watch the river flow. I sit by and watch the traffic go.

About Me

FAQ is an acronym for “Frequently Asked Question(s)“. The term refers to listed questions and answers, all supposed to be frequently asked in some context, and pertaining to a particular topic. Since the acronym originated in textual media, its pronunciation varies; “fak,” “faks,” “facts,” and “F.A.Q.” are commonly heard. Depending on usage, the term may refer specifically to a single frequently asked question, or to an assembled list of many questions and their answers.

I gotta be honest.  I don’t think there are any “frequently asked questions” about me, except when my boss asks me, “Where’s the TPS report, Ipe!?!”  Nah, he doesn’t call me Ipe, but I used to have a manager who could summon me to his office with a wave of his hand.  Ah, the magic powers that come with being management.  Where was I?  Right, the FAQ.  Okay, I don’t know if there’s a reason to have a FAQ about me, except FAQs are supposedly hip and trendy, according to In Touch Weekly Hollywood World News Perez Monthly magazine.

Who is Joel, and why can’t I stop staring at his goatee? (I might as well ask after stumbling onto this page.)

My name is Joel.  I’m not too fancy, but I enjoy nice stuff when I can get it.  I’m a regular joe-shmo who likes to hang out with friends, spend time with his family, and try to make a living.  Sure is getting hard these days.  Ain’t it the truth?

My goatee is visually-appealing, naturally.

That is a goofy-looking last name. How does one pronounce it?

Don’t make fun of the last name —  “Ipe” is all Indian. It’s pronounced long “i”, silent “e”. No Ippy, Ippee, Ip. I once got an “Ira” and didn’t even know they were talking about me. Both of my parents are Indian, from the southern Indian state of Kerala.

Did you always live in NJ?

Funny that you should ask. I used to live in the wonderful state of New York. However, for work considerations, I moved to Jersey. Close to Newark Airport, close to NYC transportation. Close to the occasional hoochie. You name it, Jersey has it. My friend Doug and I got an 2-bdrm apartment in Jersey City, in the Heights, which turns out is one of the bad parts of Jersey City. Within two years:

  • I had accumulated numerous parking tickets
  • the car was also booted
  • a scratched up car by people who can’t park
  • was the victim of a major car accident
  • my girlfriend’s car was broken into.

While Jersey City was nice for its time, I quickly tired of commuting on the bus through the Lincoln Tunnel in rush hour, or waiting in line for the bus in the evenings. I yearned for the days when I could relax on a train on the way to work. After much searching, I found a mountain hideout in Essex County. By “mountain hideout”, I mean nicely-sized 1-bdrm apartment, dining room, dishwasher, and a parking lot. Oh, a parking lot. No longer did I have to worry about finding parking.

After getting married, my wife and I yearned for a home of our own, or a larger place to rent. After searching for 2-3 bdrm apartments, and finding the rents to cost more than a theoretical mortgage payment, we ended up purchasing a 3-bedroom home. It feels great to own our first home, and customize it as we see fit.

Anything you can share about your family?

They still live in NY. My dad is a retired computer programmer, my mom is a nurse, and my sister is a pharmacist. Some other family members, like some of my cousins, also live in NY. The rest live in far away places like Illinois, California, Maryland, Florida, and of course, the motherland — India.

I read that you were home-schooled by monkeys in Indonesia?

That is unequivocally partially false — I’ve never been to Indonesia.  After high school, I started my collegiate journey at the University @ Albany to study the exciting career of Medical Technology.  Unfortunately, I learned that I have no aptitude for chemistry. I did enjoy dorm life, and living away on my own (with roommates of course.)  I suppose I enjoyed college life a bit too much, but doesn’t everyone when they go away?  It’s part of growing up.

I transferred to Pace University, and graduated with a degree in Information Systems. It was a big decision to switch careers, but turns out, the right one. If I had stayed in the Medical Technology track, I’d be a much different person today.  For one, while Medical Technology was very hot in 1994, turns out the job market for that profession was over-saturated by 2000, and salary has “sucked’ as a result.

So what do you for a living, and will it put me to sleep to find out?

While at Pace University, I had two internships at a publishing company (Help Desk analyst), and a coffee company (IT support). In my senior year, I was recruited to join a a Big 5 firm to perform technology security audits.  After the consulting market bombed in 2002, I moved into the internal IT audit career path.  It’s been a great ride so far, but I have no idea what’s on the horizon for me next.

Hearing the words “IT audit” probably put you to sleep.  Listen, documenting findings in audit workpapers can be very exciting.  You can attach evidence, document corrective action plan status, or……

5 Comments

  1. did you know Ipe is a special kind of Tree? It used to be called Ironwood. It grows in Brazil. It’s wood is usually used for deck material. It’s beautiful, and so dense and hard that it doesn’t float generally. It’s even very difficult to set on fire!

  2. up to your crazy antics again, eh? not being set on fire? oh, inflammable you! you’re incorrigible!

  3. One of my best qualities is that I am indeed not flammable. It’s a cool trick at parties.

  4. You rock!, you’re funny!

  5. John Krouskoff

    May 2, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    Hey Joel,
    Your blog crossed my Google News account. Sounds like your up to lots of great things!
    Regards,
    John Krouskoff

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