Back to Business As Usual

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My wife went back to work today. This is the first day in a week that I haven’t spent at least a good portion of the day with her, half the day on Thursday because of the strep diagnosis, and Friday through Tuesday because of already planned vacation time.

I have to admit that I’d grown accustomed to her being here, and having the place to myself for hours at a time was a bit of a challenge today. It’s always just a little bit harder on Mondays because of the weekend, but six days in a row of having her at home was a bit of a luxury that I’d gotten used to.

I didn’t do much of anything today. I spent the morning going through stuff on the computer, the afternoon watching a movie, and the evening watching another movie (actually, the same one twice in a row). I cooked dinner tonight instead of cleaning up afterwards. I largely goofed off to while the day away.

This is starting to concern me. For the last several days, I’ve been essentially phoning in my blog posts, because there really hasn’t been that much to report on. I’m currently giving The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook a once-through reading before coming back through it to really start in on the exercises, so there’s not that much to report on that front. I’m not going anywhere or doing anything exciting. I’ve been putting off my daily blog post until the end of the day just to see if there will be anything worthwhile to write about, and most of the time there’s not really anything noteworthy about my days. Hopefully that pattern will lift soon. In the meantime, I’m keeping up with full marks on my daily checklist.

Random Thoughts 5/30/2017

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Today is the last day of my wife’s staycation. She took Friday and Tuesday off because we were planning on going out of town for the weekend, but her strep kept us home. So we’ve been taking it easy for days, just hanging out at home.

It’s been fun having her home. I love her company and we have fun together. I prefer her company to anyone else’s. She gets me, and I get her. Tomorrow’s going to be lonely without her.


Went to go get an MRI done on my knee tonight. Results will go to my orthopedist and my general practitioner, and I’ll hear back from the orthopedist on the 6th during my follow-up visit. I’m a little nervous. I expected this to be a fairly simple case where I’d be sent home with exercises to do to strengthen the joint and the muscles in it. But now with my kneecap broken, there’s no telling what else could be wrong in there.


It’s been some time since I’ve reported anything to do with my mental illnesses and my progress on them. Doesn’t really feel like I’ve made any progress lately, but realistically I know that I can’t always be moving forward. It’s fine for me to be pretty stationary, mentally speaking. Feeling like I’m in a rut means that I’m not regressing, so that’s a good thing. Hopefully I can start making some headway soon. I feel like I’m stagnating.

 

A Long Streak Broken

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Remember when I fell down that flight of stairs back in April and kinda banged up my knee? Well, it’s been bothering me going up and down stairs and also whenever I torque it to one side for extended periods of time. So knowing that pain is an indicator that something’s wrong, I went to go have it looked at.

The orthopedic’s office was very nice and took some fresh X-rays with my knee bent in different positions, something that they did in North Carolina when I first injured it, so I didn’t expect anything to have changed.

Boy, was I wrong.

The surgeon showed me on one X-ray where I had apparently broken a decent-sized chunk of the inside of my kneecap off and where it was in a spot that it shouldn’t be.

I’ve never broken a bone before. I went almost forty-eight years without breaking one.

So the next step is to go get an MRI to see if anything else is messed up, and to return to the orthopedist in about a week and a half to get the results.

I’m concerned that regardless of what the MRI shows, they’ll need to do surgery to get the loose piece out. I’m not looking forward to having to climb a flight of stairs to get to the apartment having just had my knee operated on. There’s ways of getting up the stairs if I have to, but I’d prefer to not have to shuffle on my butt up a flight of 16 steps if I can avoid it.

I’ll keep you posted on how things are going.

Life at the Speed of Nap

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I’ve been exceptionally tired today. Not really sure why. I took four naps throughout the day.

I got plenty of sleep last night, so there’s no reason for me to have slept as much as I did. I’m chalking it up to boredom, I suppose.

The first nap, sure, that could have been because I was legitimately tired. I take a lot of medication in the morning and several of them have drowsiness as a side effect. I often will wake up at a reasonable hour or earlier, stay up for about an hour or 90 minutes, then go back to bed for another hour and a half or so. I’m used to that. But the second nap, and increasingly the third and fourth naps, might have been because I didn’t have anything else to do.

My to-do list today was light, only two things (I try to keep things light on the weekends if I can), plus my usual checklist of items for the day. I knew it would be easy to knock them out at my leisure, and since I didn’t start on the checklist until after 9:00 tonight I’ve had all day basically to myself.

I’ve been this way all week. Not necessarily with so many naps, but I’ve been spending most of this week trying to do as little as possible. It almost feels like I’m goofing off and calling things in to try and complete my checklist each day. (Today will be day 21 of the current streak of full marks, incidentally.) Monday was exceptionally busy and I think that I used far too many spoons that day. I feel like I’ve been playing catch up ever since.

Hopefully this desire to procrastinate will pass soon. I’m not terribly fond of it.

What I Did With My Saturday

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Today’s been a good day. Started the day with another viewing of Doctor Strange. Being able to watch it at my leisure has left me very impressed with the director and visual effects coordinator. If you haven’t seen the movie, I won’t give anything away, but the movie has absolutely stunning visual effects. In several scenes, the very fabric of reality is dynamically fluid and ever-changing, so much so that tracking which way is up in a foot chase is nearly impossible. (If you’ve seen the movie, you know exactly what I’m talking about.)

Being the person that first visualized the storyboards for these scenes takes a kind of creativity that I just don’t have and never will. It’s one thing to combine existing terrain and actors and stunt people to create an exciting scene, but it’s a whole different matter when that terrain doesn’t follow the laws of gravity and physics. This movie is unique in its visual effects and creates something that I’ve never seen on film before. It is truly breathtaking. Plus, the acting is solid and the story is well-written, dramatic and action filled with just the right dash of comedy. I really enjoy this film and I’m glad that I own it.

We were supposed to be at an SCA event this weekend, but my wife’s strep throat kept us home. I’ve been fine with this decision up until this evening, when I found out that a friend of mine received an exceptionally prestigious award that I’ve long believed that he deserved. I really hate that we missed being there for that. It would have been magnificent.

We’re ending the evening with another comic book movie, one that we’re greatly familiar with at this point – Deadpool, another brilliantly written movie. It’s a background movie at this point, one of several that we own.

Short, Sweet, and To the Point

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I put off writing today until something exciting happened. We bought Doctor Strange this evening and started watching it, and that was going to be my exciting thing, but about 50 minutes in I looked at our radio station’s website and noticed that there was a very unexpected DJ on the air, someone that hasn’t done a show in nearly a year, so we interrupted the movie and quickly turned on the stream and logged into the station’s IRC channel to say hello. (Breathe.) And that’s what I’m going to be doing for the rest of the night, I think. We own the movie now (on sale!) and can watch it at any time. Catching this DJ is a rare thing indeed and we’re very happy to change gears midway through the evening.

A Day of Anniversaries

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As I write this, the window is closing for two anniversaries to share the same time. Here in Austin, it’s still May 25, the 40th anniversary of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. In the UK, it’s now May 26th, the 50th anniversary of the UK release of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

On tonight’s show, I played Princess Leia’s Stolen Death Star Plans, Palette-Swap Ninja’s brilliant Star Wars-themed parody of the entire Sgt. Pepper album. Conceived and performed by Dan Amrich and Jude Kelley, they took five years painstakingly writing hyper-specific lyrics that uses the music of Sgt. Pepper to tell the story of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, in order. In addition, during this time Amrich and Kelley were also learning how to perform each of the instruments from Sgt. Pepper to recreate the music as faithfully as possible. The result is an amazing labor of love of both Star Wars and the Beatles.

The responses that I got from my audience were very positive – they really enjoyed it and thought it was quite clever. I wish I’d had a larger audience, but this wasn’t something that I’d advertised – I just told my listeners at the beginning that there was a special presentation to start the second hour of my show and only told them what it was just before it went on the air. In retrospect, advertising might have gotten me a larger audience, but likely not that many. Tonight’s numbers were somewhat low, I believe because of the holiday weekend starting early for some people.

If you’re interested in listening to the album, Palette-Swap Ninja’s website has a YouTube playlist of videos created by Katrin Auch that expertly attaches footage from the movie to the lyrics of the songs. The lyrics are also subtitled in the videos, if you have trouble following along with the music. There are also links on the page to download the music for yourself, in either MP3 or FLAC formats – it’s free!

My thanks to Dan, Jude, and Katrin for this magnificent addition to my music collection. I’ve listened to the album several times since it was released earlier this month (in conjunction with Star Wars Day, May 4) and I love it. I hope you do too.

Birthday Dinner #2

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Tonight we went to one of our favorite restaurants, Haymaker, for some comfort food on Moms’ tab I had a Cuban pressed burger – think Cuban sandwich, with a burger in it – with sweet potato waffle fries on the side, and my wife had the Oregoner – oven-roasted turkey breast and applewood-smoked ham with honey mustard, sliced apples and Tillamook cheddar cheese – and coleslaw. We split an order of poutine for an appetizer. Our server’s name was Savannah and she was great fun. We had a blast. Thanks Mom!

And because I really can’t remember much of what happened today, that’s about all I have to say for the day.

Whiteout

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Earlier tonight, we experienced a sudden squall. After threatening to rain for some time, it finally started, and within seconds, it was raining and hailing so hard I couldn’t see the tree across the parking lot from the apartment. It was an absolutely devastating storm that only lasted maybe five minutes before dissipating, but it was hard enough to leave a couple of hail dings on the hood of the car. We were lucky, there were other vehicles that looked to have more damage than we had.

The scariest part of this storm is that Stormy Cat was outside at the time, and we couldn’t call him back home. We tried three times, but he was left to fend for himself, and we were left to worry.

My wife actually broke down and cried over it. I tried reassuring her that he was fine, that he always seemed to dodge the worst of any rainstorm that we experienced, and I was fairly confident that he was someplace safe, hiding from the rain and hail. But deep down, I was sick with worry too.

About 45 minutes after the storm had passed, sure enough, we saw him on the balcony, and we let him in. He was fairly wet, his paws were muddy, but he seemed fine. He came in, stayed for about an hour and a half, got mostly dry, then went back outside for a while.

That didn’t last. He was outside maybe fifteen minutes before he was back at the door, wanting in. As I write this, he’s on our bed, probably continuing to groom himself in a dry, safe location.

This is one of the reasons that I wish we could be a little more insistent that he stay indoors. He could be hit by a car, he could get in another fight with the neighborhood cats, he could get hurt by a hailstorm. If we weren’t pretty convinced that litter box training him would be a long and messy endeavor, we’d keep him inside for good. But unfortunately we are liable for damage to the apartment while we’re here, and we’d like to get our security deposit back when it’s time to move. (That won’t be for another couple of years at least.)

Moving is another thing that worries me. If we move, and he goes to another apartment complex with us, I’m worried that he’ll get lost and not find his new home if we let him roam as he does here, and the same litter box concern of keeping him inside will follow us anywhere we go. Perhaps the only way of making sure is to slowly, over time, convert him to being an indoor kitty while we’re here and eating the security deposit. That unnerves me, however. I pride myself on keeping a fairly clean and neat home, and cleaning up kitty accidents would be problematic without a steam cleaner. We’ve experienced the issue of kitty accidents with other cats that we’ve owned, and we’d both prefer not to have a repeat of the circumstances.

For now, I think we’re mostly content with the situation we’re in – one indoor cat, one indoor/outdoor cat. I suppose we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Productivity

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Today’s been rather busy, comparatively speaking.

My to-do list usually has about three or four items on it. Sometimes I have to artificially create something to do in order to give me that check box on my checklist. Sometimes household chores line up to where I’m doing a few of them on the same day and I don’t need to find things to do.

Today’s checklist has twenty items, and I’m tired.

I’ve still managed to achieve what will be full marks on the checklist today, so today’s been very well balanced between my usual stuff and stuff specific for today. And there’s been some time to just sit back and relax at the end of the day.

To be fair, most of these items are things that didn’t take too long to complete, so I only spent a few hours on that part of my day. But usually my to-do list is filled with things that only take a few minutes to do, so it’s a comparison between a few hours and 30 minutes. (Remember that a lot of things are daily to-do items and are therefore each separate check marks on my checklist.)

It’s been a good day. But I hope tomorrow’s not as hectic.