Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Now this is not fair

Ever since I went and took my nap, I've felt worse and worse.  My throat is starting to get stratchy, my head hurts, my nose and eyes have been drippy all day--I assumed that was allergies--and now I have that achy virusy feeling when everything down to your toe joints hurt.  So I think I may be coming down with a co-worker's cold, even though I've seen her very little except at lunch and sat across the table from her. :(  That would not be a good way to start the new year.

So I haen't done hardly anything since I got home, except feel bad.  I think I'm going to try to watch some TV, maybe a DVD, and see if I at least do something fun.

I feel free

I'm off work early and at home with no plans with anyone else until Saturday.  There's just me and the fish. :)  I would like to straighten up the bedroom and clean out the car, and of course there are the game notes, but otherwise I plan on having some fun and relaxing.  We'll see if that comes to pass.

I'm starting out my free time with a little cereal, and then a nap.  I'm waiting to see if something comes in the mail, which doesn't look like it's run yet.  I hope it does--it's the reimbursement for the trip, which I sent in the request for over a month ago. That would be a great help right now.

Okay, on to that nap.  Ill write later, though.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

A long day

but a productive one.   Work was good, and I spent two hours in check-out and navigated some of the challenges there without too much trouble.  Afterwards, I did my data entry, and then after work a friend and I had appointments with our physical therapists.  Then we came home,  YKWIA treated us to Long John Silver's., and we watched 'Doctor Who' while we ate.  I cried over the death of a Dalek, in the first episode in which they appeared in the revived series.  YKWIA has been showing me them from the beginning, with Eccleston and Billie Piper.  It was a good episode, and I cried over a mutated Dalek, the supposed last of his kind, only he wasn't really just a Dalek any more, and for a Dalek, there is only one solution to that conundrum.  I cry at the drop of a hat with anything sad on shows.  Oddly enough, when it's something really sad in real life, I might cry at say, the death of someone, when I first get the news of their passing, but I'm very stoic in my grief in public at say, the funeral, afterwards.  That's just my way.

I took A to get his bus pass and some creamer (coffee being an important staple in that household, and creamer being just as important, as they go hand in hand, at least for YKWIA).  Now I'm home, watching the fish swim about the bubbling fishtank, the fairy lights on the tree and around the windows, with the star lights twinkling between the living and dining areas.  THe sound of the aquarium is mesmorising, as if it could lull me to sleep without any trouble.

I am tired. I should work on the book review that's due tomorrow, but I think I'll rest and try to finish it tomorrow morning.  My head hurts and I'm still a bit sore from PT, and it would be great to just stretch out for a bit.  Tomorrow I can get up early and work things out.  It's short, just about 300-500 words or so.  I hate to leave it to the last minute, but well, I guess that's par for the course.

I plan to finish the game notes on either Thursday night or Friday during the day, as I am off for New Year's, and my friends have plans to stay in with 'American Horror Story' and piza, so I probably won't see them until Saturday.  That gives me an evening and then a whole day to do whatever I want.  I'm not used to such freedom.  I would like to finish the house--namely the bedroom; everything else is fine.  But that leaves plenty of time for game notes, DVD--watching, and reading, among other things.

Okay, I think I'll lie down and stretch things out a bir, maybe do my PT exercises.  One involves a strap and a pillow.  The others are variations of a pelvic lift.  I could do them on the table at the library, as they would help a lot over the course of the day, but I'm afraid someone would come in and wonder what the crazy person is doing lying on a table making strange motions on it  No, better to do them at home.  While I'm off I'd also like to do some exercising at the complex gym, especially as my pain has calmed down.  Yesterday I spent most of the day very, very tender, partly due to the ordinary pain and partly, I suspect, due to the deep muscle work my therapist did on Monday night.  He did the same things today, but there was a certain gentleness in his movements, and he was careful not to exacerbate the problem areas with too much pressure.  I really appreciated that.  I've gone to different physical therapists, and these people are by far the best--Choice PT over on Duval Street past Man O'War off Tates Creek.  They are very hands-on, rather than just giving you some exercises to go through.  Oh, they do that, too, but they also work on the muscles and various issues you have with deep massage and maipulation, and both my friend and I like them a lot and are getting better results.

Okay, going now.  I'll write sometime soon.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

I currently do not have Internet access at home

and for whatever reason, when I tried to either use my phone as a hotspot or tether it through USB so I could get the laptop online, it wouldn't bring up Google Chrome, and when it finally did, it wouldn't connect to the Internet.  Phooey.  I suspect it was trying to download the waiting Windows update, and I only have 5 GB of hotspot/tethering data, so I didn't want that to happen, and it was acting stuck, as it won't download over a metered connexion (and I'm not sure that counts as one), but it's not a super-duper fast connexion as far as I know, something that could handle a Windows update.   So I decided I'd just have to blog on the phone, but of course, that's a problem for any long posts because after you swipe for awhile (although that's better than hunting and pecking on the pop-up keyboard), your hands start to cramp and tire.  But, then I remembered that back when I used my tablet more, I had gotten a little Bluetooth keyboard.  It never worked with my tablet particularly well, being very slow, but I think that was because the tablet was an entry-level old one, with an old form of Bluetooth, that just couldn't keep up.  So I decided to try the keyboard with my phone, and it works beautifully.  I am typing away right now.  The main thing is that is is smaller than a notebook keyboard, and the delete key is much bigger than the backspace, so it's easy to confuse them.  But it flows much easier.  And since I have unlimited data on my phone, I can type to my heart's content on Blogger, Facebook, e-mails, whatever. :)

Now you may ask, why didn't I just blog from the library, which has free Wi-Fi? Well, to be honest, I was a little tired, and didn't want to spend any more time in the chair pecking away at my computer.  I came home, ate something, got comfy, and then decided to go online, with mixed results.  So the keyboard does solve an issue.

Okay, now I have to work on a book review that's due Thursday.  I'd like to get it in tomorrow.  Good night (at least for now).

One of the problems

with being a librarian is, well, you tend to want to keep the books. We love books. And sometimes, yes, even librarians, keep the books a bit too long. So I racked up some fines at the public library, enough that I couldn't check out books, CDs, Kindle books, audiobooks, or download songs.  I'm a pretty decent library user--I do all those things.  Fortunately, they are doing something through December 31st that was really helpful to me: they're allowing people to 'read off their fines'.  Basically, for every hour you read, you can get up to $8 forgiven.  You must do it in the library.  Tonight was the only night I could do it, as Christmas weekend was a busy time of book moving and I have appointments two days this week in the evening.  I had an appointment today, actually, but I was out around 5 pm, so I went over to the library and registered, taking a book I have out from them, 'Pioneer Girl: An Annotated Autobiography' by Laura Ingalls Wilder.  And I read. And read. I started at 5:30 and went until 8 pm, and got everything forgiven. (I even read a little longer than I had to).  My legs fell asleep because I was reading at a table, sitting in a wooden chair, but no matter.  What does matter is that I have a clean slate, which is good, as I have no money at the moment to speak of, much less to spare for fines.  Thank you, Lexington Public Library!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Got a lot accomplished this weekend

I moved over 1,000 role-playing game books off their shelves and then rearranged and put them on different shelves this weekend. My game master is quite pleased.  Even then, it was probably a fifth to a fourth of the total in his book collection,  and about half to two-thirds of the gaming books.  I really needed to put this private library on my resume.  After all,  both he and I, separately,  each have more books than the library I work in,  if you don't include loose journals.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Yawn...

I had a great time with my friends today. But, my lack of sleep is catching up with me. Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

PS Here's a close-up of my tree. I think the little penguin ornaments I got last year are adorable. :)

So, between all the activity yesterday and the caffeine I drank to get through it

I think I slept something like three hours tops last night. Now I'm up, I've just finished some Greek yoghurt and raspberries, and I've turned all the lights back on. It's gloomy outside and grey, raining, 57 degrees and thundering. What an odd Christmas!

When I was a kid, one of my friends, Jody Sauers, I believe, got to open presents on Christmas Eve, and when I found out I argued the case for doing so in our house, too. We compromised. I was allowed to open one present each year on Christmas Eve. It was always my paternal grandmother's, and it always had new pyjamas or gowns for me to wear that night. It became a tradition. We lived all over the country, and were rarely home in Kentucky on Christmas, but my grandmother's presents made me feel closer to family. My grandmother's been gone since 1993. I still miss her, and the others in my life who have passed. And every year, I think of her and our tradition.

Okay, time to get ready to go out into the gloom and dreary day. Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Lights! Lights! Lights!

One last thing--my living room looks a bit like Snoopy's dog house, but I find it festive. The stars twinkle, so that's why the one is off. it's been very busy today, but oddly enough, enjoyable to putter around on my own today. Hope you had a good day yourself. Good night (for real).

Yay! I got the notes finished!

Which means I don't have to worry about getting them finished before Saturday evening. And, with that accomplished, along with everything else I did today, I am going to go on to bed. Good night, and Merry Christmas, to those who celebrate. And may your new year be bright and filled with love and laughter.

PS Grand total: 8,567 steps, 4.74 miles walked, 825 kcal burned. Whew! Not bad, considering most of it was in a 780-square-foot apartment!

Well, that's everything, except

exercising and doing the notes, the latter of which I'm about to at least get a start on. As far as the exercise goes, I have walked 8,245 steps today, which works out to 4.37 mi, and 85 minutes of activity, according to my phone, burning 795 calories. That's better than 10-15 minutes on the complex bike, so I'm going to consider that my exercise for the day. Perhaps tomorrow I'll bike. Tomorrow I'm going over to my friends' house, do laundry, and visit with them, maybe work on moving the books YKWIA wants accomplished.

I'm doing much better lately--even today, without the normal routine--of taking my medication and checking my blood sugar when I'm supposed to. Dr. Humphries had asked me to keep track of both on a paper and then snap a picture of it on my phone and e-mail it to her weekly. Next Monday will be the first full week. I'm using three applications on my phone to keep track and encourage myself to do what I'm supposed to do:
  • On Track, which allows me to keep my medication and glucose logs daily.
  • Clock (the basic Android Clock program), to set an alarm for 9:00 pm for taking my nightly Lantus, which is the hardest to remember (I used to have an application called MediSafe, which was good, which could remind me to take my medicine whenever it was supposed to by a shaking pill bottle sound, but it became annoying after awhile. After all, I take my other meds at mealtimes, so there was not always a set 'time' that was good, and I just have to remember, take this when I eat. But the Lantus is hard, because it isn't taken at meals.
  • Habitica (formerly HabitRPG), which is a habit-forming helper that uses an avatar with hit points and experience, all the things you'd see in a role-playing game, and you keep the avatar alive and increase its stats and inventory by accomplishing to-dos, daily tasks, and regular habits. Each one is designated easy, moderate, hard, etc., giving you a different set of points based on that. You can use experience points to get items such as armour, weapons, etc. It's pretty fun. Basically, I set it up so I can either tell it I took my meds or forgot to (which adds or subtracts points, respectively), whether I cleaned house today, or worked on the notes, e-mailed my doctor, those sorts of things, by a certain day. I really like it--I've tried other habit trackers, but given my gaming background, this one really resonates. I'm three experience points away from level 3 just after a few days. You can also use it on the computer by following the link above.
Okay. I never actually ate lunch, but I just had dinner. I guess I was busy working and wasn't all that hungry. Time to move over to the laptop and work on the notes.

Okay, I plan to be cremated

so this just will not be possible, BUT...it's very tempting. Hee hee. True story: Years ago my great-grandfather, who'd been a tobacco auctioneer, died. My father, an engineer, really wanted to set up an electric eye at the graveside and have a recording of my great-grandfather auctioneering play if someone tripped it, scaring them half to death. I guess the apple didn't fall too far from the tree.

Taking a break

I've downloaded Audacity, listened to some pagan music while working on the kitchen, got the various trashcans throughout the house consolidated, put the recyclables in bags (the container's too big to take outside, at least for me), unloaded and loaded the dishwasher, wiped down the counters in the kitchen, cleaned out the refrigerator, gone through the old mail and recycled most of it, and generally worked until I decided it's been long enough and I was at a good stopping point, so it's time for a break. It's beautiful outside, sunny and 61 degrees. I think I'm going to just chill for a few minutes before resuming my chores.

One more thing I'm going to try to do today

I was playing some old tapes the other day, on Yule Night, pagan tapes that aren't available in CD as far as I know, and whose singers are, well, mostly dead, but were very important back in the 1980s. I'd love to be able to listen to them on my phone. I was looking at how to transfer from tape to .mp3 and really, I have a portable tape player (not a Walkman, but the same sort of thing), I have a male-to-male standard 3.5 mm connector. So in theory, if I download software (Audacity was recommended, as it is free and useful), I can take the player, plug one end of the connector to the headphone jack on it, plug the other into the microphone jack of my computer, and transfer them that way. It might take some finagling, but I think it will work.

PS I did find that I can, just like I plug my phone into a speaker with that connector, do the same thing with the portable tape player. Now I just have to find an AC adapter that will work with it so I don't run down the batteries much.

So far today I have:

  1. Slept in a little, as I had a hard time extricating myself from some very weird, weird dreams.
  2. Showered and dressed--in Capris, a short sleeve shirt, and sandals, because it was 52 degrees this morning when I woke up, is hovering around 60 now, and is supposed to top out about 63-66, depending on which weather station you go by.
  3. Called A to see if creamer was needed by YKWIA before Saturday, as Kroger closes at 5:30 this evening and I was going to have to go to the grocery because there was not really anything to eat in the house.
  4. Spent an hour and a half at Kroger trying to get what I needed as frugally as possible.
  5. Got gas at Kroger for 60 cents off a gallon, bringing it to $1.24/gallon. I filled the car up for less than $17 (but I wasn't on empty, just a little under a quarter of a tank).
  6. Brought the groceries in.
  7. Put away the cold things.
  8. Turned on the tree and lights (yes, I know, it's after Yule. I keep it up for awhile. I'll probably take it down on New Year's. A Christmas tree I would have kept up till January 6th, when the Christmas season traditionally ends.)
  9. Poured myself a cold drink, as I was parched and hot. I have the heat off, of course, but I'd like to open the windows, but I don't think I can get to the ones in the living room due to the tree.
What I'm planning on doing today, if at all possible:
  1. First, get some breakfast. It's almost noon and I haven't eaten yet today.
  2. Clean out the fridge.
  3. Clean the kitchen.
  4. Unload and load the dishwasher.
  5. Do a few plastic/non-dishwasher-safe dishes.
  6. Run the dishwasher, if it's full.
  7. Put away the rest of the groceries.
  8. Clean the bathroom.
  9. Straighten up the living/dining area.
  10. Gather the laundry.
  11. Go through old mail and recycle what I can.
  12. Gather and take out the trash.
  13. Gather and take out the recyclables.
  14. Water plants.
  15. Put water in fish tanks.
  16. Exercise on the complex gym's bike.
  17. Put together some candy favours for three friends for the holiday. I couldn't really afford to do presents, but this is the equivalent of a stocking, really.
  18. Listen to pagan and other music.
  19. Do the game notes.
Tomorrow I need to:
  1. Call my mom and wish her a merry Christmas.
  2. Help a friend move two bookshelves worth of books over a bit (that may spill into Saturday, I'm not sure).
  3. Spend time with my friends.
But today is my day to try to get everything back on track.

UPDATE: I've removed watching The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, part 1. A and I may be watching a movie or two in the series (he hasn't seen them) while we're off, and it would be nice to see them again before watching the third one. Instead, I've put in doing the game notes. Not quite as fun, but I've got the time now, and it would be nice to get it finished long before Saturday night. :)

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Okay, I'll admit it

I Googled how to use iontach in a sentence,  and found the perfect example. But it does make me want to crack open my Learning Irish book and  tapes again. :)

It's 60 degrees and stormy two days before Christmas

And I must say,  I'm enjoying the warmer temperatures.  It may get into the 70s this weekend.  I think we've had a handful of cold days this month.  Makes me wonder about February,  though.

Tá an t-amhrán seo go hiontach!

('This song is wonderful!')

LISTEN: Ed Sheeran Records ‘Thinking Out Loud’ in Irish
Here’s a lovely pre-Christmas treat for any fans of Ed Sheeran who speak Irish (or Gaeilge, if you’d prefer).

Ed has recorded a special Irish language version of “Thinking Out Loud” as part of a special CD that will be distributed free to Irish schoolchildren in the new year. “Ag Smaoineamh Os Ard” will be the lead single from CEOL 2016, a compilation of Irish language songs from Kodaline, The Coronas and others.

It’s all been organised by the Irish radio station RTE 2fm, and this clip from The Eoghan McDermott show explains exactly how Ed came to be involved, and the lengths he went to in order to phonetically sing the translated words, without anyone offering help or pronunciation advice (the actual singing kicks in around the four-minute mark).

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

One last song...

Here's another:

And while this isn't particularly seasonal, I do love Gwydion Pendderwen's 'We Won't Wait Any Longer' too.



Okay, I'm going to enjoy the lights and dig out some of my pagan music on tape. :)

A little Solstice music



Granted, I know it's meant more for Litha (Summer Solstice), but it does sing about the changes from Oak King to Holly King and back, and it's just all-around a nice pagan song.

Happy Solstice!

CC Gerbil
Here in the northern hemisphere, it is Winter Solstice. Good Yule! May your life be full of laughter, love, and light this Yuletide, and into the new year! We light candles and string lights on the longest night of the year to remind ourselves of the coming return of life-giving light.

For those of you Down Under, of course, happy Summer Solstice, and may you have warm and pleasant times.

In a good mood

I had planned to have a quiet night at home, but a friend called and needed me, and while I was a little disappointed that I wouldn't have time for myself, it was important to go over there and help him, and I love him dearly, so hey, we make sacrifices. One more night won't make a difference, except in a positive way for both of us. I fixed him dinner and we watched an episode of 'Doctor Who' (the second episode of series 1 with Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper). I hadn't actually seen those before. Then we watched 'The Awesomes'. And then I came home, in a much better mood than I was in when I went over there. Although it is important to balance life and take care of yourself, too, being with friends, in my view, is one of the most important aspects of life. Our friends are the family we choose, the ones who tell us the truth when others might tell white lies, and who we can count on no matter what. Part of having a good friendship is reciprocation. In the past, I've had people I thought were my friends who really were just there to exploit me for their own purposes. I am lucky in that, while I have very few actual close friends, they are loyal and good people who give as much as they take. So I am very thankful for that. I can't think of a better way to spend my solstice evening tonight.

Monday, December 21, 2015

I laughed out loud when I read this

and it captures the ignorance bred by hatred so well. While the current anti-Islamic/anti-Muslim climate is alarming, people need to reminded of the good aspects of Islam and Middle Eastern culture. For example, a good deal of the ancient Greek classics, including much of Aristotle, were preserved in the East and translated into Arabic, before finding their way to Europe through Spain and other channels during the 12th-century Renaissance, and we still study such philosophers as Avicenna and Averroes in philosophy classes today. Christianity has a troubled history of intolerance of its own; I don't judge all Christians by that. There should be no throwing of stones in the name of religion regardless of the parties targeted or doing the destruction. We need to learn to work and live together despite our differences, as we are all human, and all share a home on Mother Earth.



You can follow this link to see various replies back and forth.

If you're not aware of what this was in response to, read: Schoolwork about Islam triggers backlash in Virginia county
A Virginia county closed all of its schools Friday because of intense backlash over a class assignment about Islam, with some parents alleging that their children were being subjected to Muslim indoctrination and educators emphasizing the importance of exposing U.S. students to the world’s fastest-growing religion.

A high school geography teacher in rural Augusta County asked students to try their hand at writing the shahada, an Islamic declaration of faith, in Arabic calligraphy. The task, community reaction to it, and a sudden influx of outrage from around the country — including angry emails, phone calls and threats to put the teacher’s head on a stake — led the school district to close rather than risk disruption or violence.

The county, in the Shenandoah valley west of Charlottesville, is the latest to wrestle with how Islam should be portrayed in the classroom and how students should learn about it. It’s a subject that has become increasingly fraught as concerns about Islamophobia have grown alongside fears of extremist violence and terrorism.

I am liking JK Rowling much more as time goes by

J.K. Rowling Just Said She Loves a Black Hermione: "White Skin Was Never Specified"
The internet promptly exploded this weekend on the news that Noma Dumezweni, a black actress originally from Swaziland, would be cast as Hermione Granger in the next installment of the much-hyped play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. While fans got to know Hermione as white when she was played by Emma Watson in the movies, the books give no indication about the race of the story's most important female character.

On Monday, the series author and final Potter authority, confirmed that her text never indicated Hermione's race and that she "loves" the idea of a black Hermione. "Canon: brown eyes, frizzy hair and very clever. White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione."

Friday, December 18, 2015

Thursday, December 17, 2015

See what I mean?





I spent the the last hour

With all the holiday lights on, listening to the two Christmas albums Pentatonix has put out.  I love their harmonies, and their rendition of 'Mary Did You Know?' is hauntingly sublime. Now I'm all relaxed and sleepy. I still have things to do,  but they may wait till tomorrow,  when I'll take a friend to an appointment in the evening,  and I can take the laptop and work on game notes, for example. The plan is to get up early tomorrow and do the dishes and straighten up a bit,  take out the trash and recyclables, and maybe work out at the complex gym. Good night!

One of the best Google Doodles ever!!!

Celebrating Ludvig von Beethoven's 245th Year [Go to this link to play with the interactive Doodle before watching the video below, as it contains spoilers in terms of the order of the music.]



Beethoven Google Doodle tests your knowledge of composer's melodies with interactive challenge
Thursday marks 245 years since Ludwig van Beethoven was baptised, and Google has marked the occasion with a commemorative Doodle challenging visitors to put together the composer's finest creations.

Visiting the Google homepage begins an interactive story in which you must put together Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, Für Elise, Moonlight Sonata and Ode to Joy.

On his way to the concert hall, a run of bad luck sees Beethoven sees his compositions destroyed in various ways, and you have to arrange sheet music in the correct order to reach the finale.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Words of wisdom

found on a sign being sold at Meijer some time ago. I couldn't afford to buy it (I think it was something like $20), but I loved it so much I took this picture.

Last night was latke night

although, technically, Chanukah was over, we celebrated with potato latkes with onions and parsley, along with some ones with ricotta cheese. They were a great hit, and everyone had seconds. But I got home late, and had an early morning today, so I went on to bed when I got home.

Today I got a phone call from our leasing agent, telling me that despite the fact that I cannot pay the rent till the 23rd because I got my car repaired when it died, she's not going to file for eviction. I'll just have to pay the normal rent plus the normal late fees, which is great, as most of my paycheque was going to go to my rent otherwise, although even so, I'm not going to be able to pay everything. But it's still better than it would have been.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Yep...



Between a child's sense of adventure and everything from 'Tarzan' to 'Gilligan's Island' to Indiana Jones, this really seemed the case. And I am still waiting for the flying cars from 'The Jetsons'.

Our game master gifted us with the perfect Cthulhoid book!

No, not the Necronomicon. No, it's Goodnight Azathoth, by Kenneth Hite, with illustrations by Christina Rodriguez. This adorable tome, based off the popular children's book, Goodnight Moon, is chock full of Lovecraftian references:



This joins others, such as The Antarctic Express, Where the Deep Ones Are, and Cliffourd the Big Red God. Our game master, YKWIA, wants him to do a version of The Giving Tree with Dark Young of Shub-Niggurath. :)

Found this on Facebook

Your Christmas Nativity Scene Is a Lie: There probably weren’t three kings. And Jesus wasn't blonde.

Folklore is a fascinating thing; history is, in my opinion, even more so. Now, I know, I'm pagan, so my opinion probably doesn't matter, but having an historical perspective on one's religion, I believe, is important, and if you have sacred writings, well, you should read them, and not necessarily base things on the non-canonical traditions that crop up. Mind you, I also dislike neo-pagan writers who have no sense of classical history and really seem to think you can plug one Goddess into the same slot as another, because somehow with their fuzzy thinking, they're all the same. There's nothing irreligious about using critical thinking regarding religion, and in fact, in the view of many theologians, it can mean a deeper faith. Oh, and while we're at it, you do know that St. Nicholas was actually a Greek bishop in Myra, which was a city in what is now Turkey? The whole Santa Claus came much later, and had possible Norse pagan influences, as did the Christmas tree (which is why I feel justified by having a Yule tree), and which became popular in Protestant German homes in the 18th and 19th century as an alternative to the more Catholic Nativity scenes. That said, I think what matters most is that whatever faith or religion one belongs to, this is a time when we can come together to do good and help others, and it should be more about that rather than who can beat whom to a parking place at the mall and grab up the most consumable goods. So whatever holiday you're celebrating at this time of the year, hear's to light, laughter, and love in abundance.

Oh, and have you seen this?

The Real Face Of Jesus: Advances in forensic science reveal the most famous face in history.
From the first time Christian children settle into Sunday school classrooms, an image of Jesus Christ is etched into their minds. In North America he is most often depicted as being taller than his disciples, lean, with long, flowing, light brown hair, fair skin and light-colored eyes. Familiar though this image may be, it is inherently flawed. A person with these features and physical bearing would have looked very different from everyone else in the region where Jesus lived and ministered. Surely the authors of the Bible would have mentioned so stark a contrast.

On the contrary, according to the Gospel of Matthew, when Jesus was arrested in the garden of Gethsemane before the Crucifixion, Judas Iscariot had to indicate to the soldiers whom Jesus was because they could not tell him apart from his disciples. Further clouding the question of what Jesus looked like is the simple fact that nowhere in the New Testament is Jesus described, nor have any drawings of him ever been uncovered.
It's trending right now on social media, but the Popular Mechanics article is date stamped from January of this year. The photo itself, done by Richard Neave using forensic anthropology to determine what someone from the area would have looked like at that time, says 'Popular Mechanics December 2002', so I'm not sure when this was done. Still, it was very interesting.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

I didn't sleep hardly at all last night

I was worried about the choice between fixing the car and paying rent. Since the next time I should supposedly get paid is within the timeframe for paying my rent without being evicted, I decided to fix the car,  although that means most of next pay cheque will be taken up by rent and fees.

Today I took my car to a Tire Discounters and had the oil changed (long overdue--they didn't put a sticker reminder in last time). I had them check the battery, EGR valve, brakes, replace the battery, replace a brake light, and rotate the tyres.  Everything was fine except for the battery, which was cold cranking at a fourth of regular amount. I got out of there just under $200. But the car is starting much better and with no hesitation.

Okay,  I'm sleepy and I want to get going early tomorrow morning. Good night!

Friday, December 11, 2015

On a more serious note...

Threats, harassment, vandalism at mosques reach record high
Gunshots fired into a mosque in Connecticut. Armed men protesting the "Islamization of America" outside Islamic centers in Texas. Death threats called in to mosques in Florida, Maryland and Virginia.

Anecdotal evidence suggests 2015, a year bookended by murderous attacks carried out in the name of Islam, has been one of the most intensely anti-Muslim periods in American history. A new study shared with CNN puts statistical heft behind that suspicion.

Through December 8, American mosques and Islamic centers have been the victims of vandalism, harassment and anti-Muslim bigotry at least 63 times this year, the Council on American-Islamic Relations says in the study. That's the highest number since the Muslim civil rights group began keeping track in 2009 and a threefold increase over last year.

The previous high was 53 incidents in 2010, during the controversy over the "ground zero mosque" near the site of the 9/11 attack in New York. But many of those incidents concerned bias at zoning hearings for new mosques. This year's hostilities have a sharper edge.
There is a map as well. Kentucky has three incidents, one in what appears to be Louisville, one in Lexington, and I think the third is either Lexington as well, or somewhere very close.

Also...

The Growing List Of Anti-Islam Incidents Since Paris details specifics in various parts of the country.

Hahahahaha!

Found on Facebook:

This was a terrible and thought-provoking story

shared by one of the librarians on the MEDLIB-L list. As another member said, I don't understand why so many baby teeth were going to be crowned for discolouration. Surely they could have seen what the permanent ones looked like before such drastic measures for a preschooler? But the whole thing is scary, whether you've got kids or you're going under sedation in a dentist's chair yourself. Thank you to Patricia Reynolds for sharing this. It was a sad read, but one people should see. I hope this story sheds some light on the profession's lack of regulation in terms of sedation and leads to changes, so there will be no more deaths like this one.

Deadly Dentistry--Junior’s Story: Drugged to death, in a Dallas dental chair by Brooks Egerton [part 1 of 7 in an investigative series]
First they drugged him. Then they sent Mom to the waiting room. Then they strapped his torso and wrists to a padded board. But Junior did not let down his guard. At the sound of the drill, dental records say, the 4-year-old began “whining, crying and moving.” So they pulled a strap across his forehead, then soldiered on to the last breath.

Since I'm stuck at home

I plan to:
  • Do the game notes.
  • Straighten up the house.
  • Watch 'Grimm' (by myself) :(.
But first I need to eat something, and there's very little in the house. Tomorrow's plans were:
  • Go by the bank.
  • Pay my rent.
  • Help a friend put up his Christmas tree.
  • Make latkes for Chanukah.
  • Go to the grocery store with a friend.
  • Watch the last two episodes of 'Scream Queens' with friends.
Now I'm not sure about that. And with my rent, I don't really have any money to fix whatever is wrong with the car, so I may be doing all this by walking and riding the bus tomorrow, assuming I can get some cash from the bank to use as my fare, plus I'll have to get the ingredients for latkes from the grocery and take them over there. But I will do so if the car doesn't start. I just didn't want to get stranded over there tonight, even though I do have AAA. No lights came on to indicate the problem, except the one that's been on that has to do with the EGR valve. That may have finally become a pressing issue. But it may be the battery. I don't know.

Wow

In the two hours since I got off work:
  • One person tried to make a one-lane area two lanes at Rosemont Garden and Southland.
  • A motorcyclist straight from the left-turn lane, bypassing those of us who were in the correct lane at Southland and Nicholasville.
  • The traffic lights at an intersection were dark, and while most of us knew to treat it as a four-way stop, there were several cars that just barreled through the intersection on Alexandria Drive.
  • Someone else tried to merge into my lane where I was in the lane at after Harrodsburg and Rosemont Garden.
  • My car did a strange coughing shake when I started it while at the pharmacy.
  • My car barely started while I was at the Tates Creek library branch to pick up a book for a friend.
So...I went to my friend's house, gave him his medicine and the book, but left the car running. This means I won't be visiting tonight or watching 'Grimm' with him. On the way home, my other friend called to get a ride home. I was almost home and had to decline, as I'm not sure the car would continue to run, for which I'm very sorry. He understood, but it does mean that on the bus it'll be nearly 8 pm before he gets home, and he called me about 5:30. :(

Thursday, December 10, 2015

It's that time again....

I came home to find my Christmas cactus' buds opening into beautiful blooms.



The one at work is a deeper pink, nearly red, and usually blooms at the beginning of January, although I haven't seen any buds yet this year. They really do brighten up the room. My geraniums that are now on their second year after overwintering last year are still blooming in my windowsill, too.

I've been struggling

to remember to take a certain medicine before bedtime, as I tend to head to bed and then realise I haven't taken it yet, and then fall asleep without taking it. So I saw my doctor today and found out that I don't have to take it at bedtime--any time after 6 pm is fine, as long as I try to take it at about the same time every evening. So I'm going to try to do it at 9 pm, and I think I'll set one small alarm on my phone for that. I also was given some sheets that I can fill out and send in via e-mail weekly, and if I'm not doing well with my routine, my doctor will nag me. With working three jobs at the moment and all the stuff that's been going on, plus the holidays, it's been hard to stay on schedule. When my schedule gets disrupted by a large degree, I tend to put everything else--work, friends, family--ahead of myself, and that's not going to work. So I'm trying to get back on track and also do some self-care. Also, I'm very proud of myself--I was tempted several times today to not eat healthily, yet I did great. I had two eggs and a small biscuit with apple butter for breakfast. For lunch I had a salmon croquette, broccoli, a baked potato, and a French roll--without dessert. Tonight it was a peanut butter sandwich with spreadable fruit and a bowl of mixed beans. It could be better, but there were no sweets, and I actually worked a green, leafy vegetable in, which is hard when you eat at our cafeteria. I have the makings for salad in the refrigerator, and I'm considering adding that to the mix, but I think I'm full for now. Maybe I'll bring that tomorrow for lunch. I haven't cared for the cafeteria food of late; there's been little in the way of vegetarian or pescetarian* fare, and I've been reduced to eating peanut butter and banana sandwiches with white cheddar popcorn for days now, although I finally broke down and started bringing my own version of that, because who wants to spend almost a dollar on one banana? So today's meal, with the salmon, was unusually hearty.

*A diet consisting of mostly vegetarian food, with the addition of seafood, which is what I really am, but it's usually easier to say I'm a vegetarian who eats fish, to be honest.

Yay!

Despite being nervous before the call, I actually enjoyed the phone interview today. Everyone was engaging and it really set me at ease. I am so hoping I make it to the next round, where there will be a face-to-face interviews in both Louisville and Lexington, with the interviewees giving presentations.

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Excited

about the opportunity to interview by phone tomorrow for what would be my dream job.  *fingers crossed* 

Okay, I am posting from the laptop

So the Internet connexion issue is resolved, everything is up-to-date, etc., and it's working via Wi-Fi, too. I think I will try to go back to bed. Good night.

PS It is funny to have a laptop above your desktop keyboard. I was often reaching for the wrong keyboard or mouse while updating. I would have kept it on the dining room table, but I needed that Ethernet connexion. :) Anyway, good night! I was only up for an hour in the middle of the night. Now it's time to go back and try to get three hours' sleep. Somehow, I think I'm going to hit snooze a lot.

Oh, and important tip: when you type in those commands to reset the Internet connexion, you must restart the computer before it works. Just thought I'd add that, in case you didn't go to the article I linked to.

I hope you can read this very good Facebook post

Dear Non-Muslim Allies, by Sofia Ali-Khan

No one should have to feel this sort of anxiety in America 2015. Or anywhere, for that matter. We had a local Islamic centre sent a death threat via e-mail recently. In Philadelphia, someone desecrated a mosque with a severed pig's head. In my apartment complex, there are many Southern and Central Asian, Middle Eastern, and African immigrants. I'm sure there are Muslims among them. I embrace the diversity of my area. I make a point to say hello and make conversation. Why should I be threatened by the sight of a foreigner because of the actions of a relative few? I don't fear men of European descent just because statistically they are more likely to be mass shooters in our country. But put in the concept of the other, alien culture, and suddenly we're back to the years of trying to keep the Irish, the Eastern Europeans, the Armenians, and the Jews out of our country. That's wrong. The US was founded on the principle of immigrants seeking a better life in a new world. Unless you are completely of American Indian heritage, if you are American you are the result of immigration. So I just don't get the xenophobia I've been seeing. It's wrong. Completely and utterly.

I figured

that at some point in the middle of the night I'd get up to go to the bathroom and come out to check the progress of the laptop update. What I didn't expect was to have reflux. The peanut butter sandwich I ate an hour before bed seems to be sitting somewhere between my stomach and mouth, causing heartburn. I haven't had trouble with reflux in years, so I certainly wasn't expecting it. In fact, I haven't had issues since I was in school. I don't know if that's a stress indicator or not. I don't feel stressed, at least compared to the last couple of weeks. It may be mild nervousness due to the interview coming up. Or maybe I just should have waited before lying down tonight. Who knows? I do have more sympathy for a co-worker who recently had a baby. I think that child kept her in reflux most of the pregnancy. I got to see him this afternoon when Santa came to the hospital. I'm not really in to babies (they scare me a bit), but he was adorable--and slept pretty much through the whole thing.

The update worked. We're at that post-sign-in part where Microsoft is saying 'We've made some tweaks to make Windows even better. Don't turn off your PC. We'll be ready soon.' That's a very good sign. Granted, it's taken about 24 hours to update this machine, which is ridiculous. But it is updating correctly, apparently, and it shouldn't be much longer.

So it's 2 am, I'm supposed to get up and start doing stuff at 5 am, and I'm not particularly sleepy at the moment. I also woke up because my upstairs neighbours, who keep odd hours, were apparently running back and forth or something in their apartment. Our apartments aren't really well-shielded from noise from upstairs, or even sometimes from the apartment I share a kitchen wall with. The bedroom, thankfully, has a firewall between buildings, which are attached together, so I never hear anything from that neighbour, just the upstairs one, when I'm trying to sleep.

The computer just loaded. Oddly enough, it didn't reset Cortana to being active. The laptop has Windows 10 Home; the desktop has Windows 10 Pro, so there are some differences. And the Internet setting issue has cropped up there as well. Fortunately I saved the fix in that one post, so let me get out of here for now and go work on that. I'm up, I might as well.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

So I spent a good portion of last night

Trying to get a certain update to Windows 10 (it's actually called a new version of Windows 10) to install on the laptop, which is also why I never got around to blogging last night. I discovered it hadn't installed yet on the desktop, either, but when I told it to try, it did download and install it. This came out in November, towards the early to middle part of the month. I tried several things on the forum to try to get it onto the laptop--it wouldn't even download it so I could try all those fixes I found, like changing things in the registry by creating batch files full of commands, etc. You can learn more about this update at:

Mysterious Windows 10 version 1511 patch KB 3122947 fails to install

Then I thought, you know, the desktop worked. Now, granted, my desktop is marginally better in terms of memory and processing speed, but what I decided was the main factor is it's on Ethernet rather than Wi-Fi. It takes awhile to download the file--it appears to download quickly, but then starts a slower download afterwards. Maybe it's just too much for the Wi-Fi connexion, and if I remember when I downloaded Windows 10 via Wi-Fi it took what seemed like forever.

So I have an extra Ethernet cable that I can run from my modem/router to the laptop, plugged it up, plugged the laptop to charge as well, and went to bed. Then I got up to go to the bathroom around 3 am and discovered it was downloading, but then this morning when I checked it had apparently paused when the computer went to sleep. I changed the setting for that, so it won't sleep if plugged in to the outlet. Then I left it. So when I got home tonight I checked and at first it said it was 62% downloaded, but when the screen refreshed, it said to restart the computer, so it had downloaded completely. It is now at 16% set up. Will see if it works. :) But even so, it is taking awhile.

Oh, and on the desktop, after I did the update, it changed some settings, so it turned Cortana (which I find to be utterly useless and slow) back on, changed Edge back to my default browser rather than Chrome, and did something that made me unable to connect to the Internet, although I was connected. So I went to the Windows 10 Fix Network Connexion page from Microsoft and went to the command prompt (which is now attached to my taskbar on both computers, as I'm tired of searching for it each time), running it as the administrator, and typing the following at the command prompts:
  • Type netsh winsock reset and press Enter.
  • Type netsh int ip reset and press Enter.
  • Type ipconfig /release and press Enter.
  • Type ipconfig /renew and press Enter.
  • Type ipconfig /flushdns and press Enter.
This resets the TCP/IP stack, releases the IP address, renews the IP address, and flushes and resets the DNS client resolver cache, which solved that problem. :)

Okay, we're at 20% now. I think I'll go eat a sandwich and do some things around the house.

I got a phone interview!

I've set up a date and time for the interviewers to call me about the job I applied for, the one I did the curriculum vitae for, and they will interview me (they're in Louisville; the job is actually here in Lexington). So what does a librarian do when faced with an interview? She goes to the library and checks out books on asking and answering interview questions. :) I think I cleaned out the Eagle Creek library of most of their books on the subject. I have two days to prepare. I've been doing some research on the institution where the job is, and the institution that oversees the library there. Wish me luck!

Saturday, December 05, 2015

I went and visited my friends for awhile

I took A to the grocery, as I needed to go, too, and then YKWIA and I watched 'Grimm' together. Now I'm home. The Yule tree is lit, along with the strands of light I put up in the windows today and the one above the hall doorway and along the divider between the dining and living areas, which stay up all year. The lights make everything look rather cheerful. The tree is a six foot tree, fairly broad, and takes up much of the room near my living room window, so I have to be a little careful when sitting down at the computer, as I might accidentally knock off an ornament, and most of them are breakable (the one nice thing about not having cats anymore). :)

I got a lot done today. I'm still in a little pain after the workout as far as my feet go, but otherwise, it was good to do. I still have some things to move back into the closets, I need to put water in the fish tanks, do the few plastic dishes that couldn't go in the dishwasher, and tackle some things in the bedroom, but otherwise I think things are much better than they were. I'll go over tomorrow and help my friends with their house, but I can go over later than normal and then get some things done here afterwards.

I think I'm going to listen to a little music, go get a few things off the bed, and then curl up with a good book. Good night.

Apparently

it takes me longer to recuperate from a workout than I thought it would. An hour later, actually. My feet still hurt quite a bit, even though I was in my diabetic New Balances. Maybe I should follow my podiatrist's advice after all. I told him about our little exercise room and he suggested the bike would be easier on my feet. It also did better for me on cardio (I only walked at about 2.3 miles/hour while on the treadmill, and 14 or 15 mph on the bike, but I got my breathing and heart rate up more with the bike). I never even broke a sweat on the walk, but didn't feel comfortable raising the speed above 2.5 mph. I do need to take my inhaler with me--I was wheezing with each breath there at the end and coughing a little bit, almost going into an asthma attack (mine is exercise induced). So I must remember to take that with me.

Anyway, I'm going to eat and then finish putting things back into closets, then clean off the dining room table and couch, and put some things away in the kitchen, and then go from there.

Listening to:

I have loved this song since I first heard it about 1984 or 1985. I had several Depeche Mode vinyl records from that era, but this is my favourite of mine. It's very interesting when you have headphones on, too, as it really uses the stereo tracks well, with effects travelling from one side to another and back. It's a sad song, yes, and was very shocking back then, but I do like it. Keep in mind, I was a fairly depressed teenager, although I made it past that.



Oh, wow. we found the dark side of the playlist, as the next song played was Ben Folds Five's 'Brick', followed by Anna Nalick's '2 am', which both involve abortion, and the latter alcoholism. But hey, at least the sun is streaming in and all. :)

Well

I spent 10 minutes on the treadmill, once I untangled the emergency stop magnet and clip and put it back in place so it would work (I did this for both of them, because, well, I thought someone else might have trouble starting one like I did). Also, I went for 10 minutes on the stationary bike. Yay! My one load of laundry is finished--I had it on delicate, but took out the hand washable ones early, two of which had sequins, and stayed to monitor, especially as someone put quarters into our pair of dryers but didn't choose the lower one, so when I checked mine and hit delicate again, it loaded the time onto mine, and 83 minutes on delicate will shrink just about anything, I suspect. :) Towards the end, it let me put it up to medium/permanent press, as it had been a mixed load and included jeans and Capri pants that take a little while longer than normal to dry.

So, next on the agenda, now that I've had something like four glasses of water in quick succession, is to put things back into the closet and generally straighten up. But first I think I'm going to stretch my back and feet out for a few minutes. I will say the exercise application Samsung Health apparently chose some sort of music playlist from the ones I play the most or something, because it has picked out a diverse group of tracks but they're all ones I like a lot, without (so far) replicating any band or singer, even though the music's been playing long after the exercise was finished. So I think I'll listen to a bit of music and just relax for a few minutes, give my neck and lower back a chance to recuperate, and then go from there. I'll resume household chores about 3 pm.

I had a suspicion that this would be #1 on the countdown this week

And I was right.



My desktop computer is right next to my living room window. I just watched the mail carrier drop a package and heard tinkling. Never a good sound. Hope it's okay, and the person gets their package intact. Okay, time to go get more stuff done.

I love this

Found on Facebook, shared by a radio station:

I'm slowly getting things straightened up here

I've washed the dishes, put up the holiday decorations, vacuumed, and put some of the things back in the closet. I'm very sweaty now, and I think I'm going to wait till the radio countdown is over (in about 30 minutes--we're up to #5), take a shower, then do laundry and work out at the same time. Yes, I'll get sweaty again, but I can't go anywhere like this. Then I'll work on the other closets, do general straightening up, and go from there. At this point I don't know if I'll go over to my friends' house or not--it's almost noon, after all. This has taken awhile. But I'll let them know sometime this afternoon if I don't. A wasn't going to be available till about 6:30 or 7 pm anyway, so it may still work out that we can go to the store, and I can get everything else finished, or watch 'Grimm' with YKWIA. But we may be able to do that Sunday since there won't likely be a game.

When my friends gave me the tree last year, they also gave me a bunch of ornaments that I used last year that had been one of their mothers'. This year I put my stuff on the tree first, and a few things that came with the tree, like the red, white, green, and blue tree skirt, a garland, and a snowman ornament. But really, once I got my stuff on there, it looked fine. I did get a strand of LED lights, so I have some that are cylindrical and the older ones I had that are globes on there. Add some 'holographic' snowflakes and plastic and glass icicles, and I don't think I need much else. :) Most of the other ornaments are red and white, and while I don't have a colour theme, really, I think I'll overload the tree if I put too much on it. So I think I'll stop. A does have a colour theme on their tree, courtesy of YKWIA, who is an artist, in purple and gold, so the red and green ornaments don't work with them. That's one reason I wound up with them. If I decide not to use them, I may go ahead and donate them to Goodwill or something. But for now I'll just keep them in their boxes.

24 years ago today

I walked out of a six-year relationship, six-month marriage, which was the best decision of my life, and put me on the road to where I am today. I can't believe it's been so long. Wow. But hey, still, yay! Let me just thank YKWIA, who helped me by asking questions about my life that I really couldn't answer positively, and who saved me by helping me get out of that horrible relationship. Thanks for sticking with me in the turmoil afterwards, too. :)

Friday, December 04, 2015

Two great things to be happy about:

  1. My relative (okay, my mom, I'm never sure just what to share online) is out of the hospital and at home.
  2. I have as much of tomorrow as I want to recharge, regroup, and do various things to de-stress and get things back on track, which is awesome.
Oh, here's maybe a third: on my way home I was driving and someone tried to cross into my lane. I was probably in his blind spot. I honked to alert him, and he backed off, so neither of us were hurt, etc. Yay for that!

So, what am I going to do with my time? Well, tonight, I am going to go on to bed soon and get a good night's sleep. Tomorrow, there's:
  1. Listening to the Top 40 countdown.
  2. Putting stuff back in their place in the closets. [Partially done.]
  3. Straightening up the house. [Partially done.]
  4. Doing the rest of my laundry (I got some done tonight at my friends' house, but we decided to record 'Grimm' and watch it later, so I didn't do the last load. Fortunately, I think I have enough quarters now.
  5. Putting up the holiday decorations.
  6. Doing the dishes in the dishwasher.
  7. Exercising at the complex gym (while doing my laundry, most likely, as they're in the same building).
  8. Watering the plants again.
  9. Putting water in the fish tanks.
  10. Vacuuming.
  11. Listening to music.
  12. Working on the game notes.
  13. Reading (maybe finally pick up Library of Souls and run with it).
We will probably not be playing on Sunday, since Brenda has a Society for Creative Anachronism event on Saturday and a rather long drive, but I'd like to have them finished nevertheless. Okay, I think I'll head on to bed. Good night!

PS I finally saw the Australian comedy 'The Librarians', which I'd heard discussed on various librarian electronic lists in terms of images of librarians, not to be confused with the spin-off of The Librarian movies with Noah Wyle. Oh, my goodness, what a cast of characters. And Frances says the most terrible things! YKWIA has a Hulu subscription, and so can get them. I'm interested in seeing more.

Interesting video sensory sensitivity in autism

It's amazing

how hungry you can get when you're told you can't eat for a few hours. Today I had a chest CT scan with contrast, and couldn't eat for four hours prior to the test. Fortunately, the imaging centre is very close to my apartment, so I came home and am having a peanut butter and fruit sandwich with some vegetarian baked beans, and plenty of water.

This has been a very rough week in terms of scheduling my friend's and my appointments so they don't interfere with my work. My relative is doing better, although still in the hospital; her husband texted a picture of her to me today, and that was nice. I now face a very difficult decision--do I drive an hour away to see her, visit, and then return, or do I take care of some things that have been on the back burner and basically regroup and get recharged while I have some time tomorrow? If I get up very early, I might be able to do both, but I think that would be pushing it. I haven't been taking care of myself very well of late, something I'm trying to get back to doing.

In the meantime I'm going to take a friend to get some furnace filters and leaf bags (in Lexington, leaves and other yard waste must go in either big paper bags or the Lenny (yes, we name our trash receptacles here, there's also Herbie and Rosie) container, which fills up pretty easily, although it is pretty large. I also going to try to do some laundry over there, as I missed it last Sunday and didn't manage to do it any of the rest of the week, either, and I'm kind of down to very little cool weather clothes--although it was fairly warm today, in the high 40s, low 50s.

I think I'm going to lie down for about a half-an-hour nap, then stop by the grocery store briefly and go over there. I should still be there before the friend I'm taking shopping gets home.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Goats!

Aren't they adorable?

:)

This is so true.

Sorry I didn't post yesterday

I've been crazyily busy of late.  Thanksgiving exhausted me,  YKWIA had some issues and needed extra help, and we have seven appointments (mostly in the evening, thankfully) between us this week to go to.  My family member is back in the hospital,  this time at her local one,  although they are talking about sending her up here to Lexington at the University of Kentucky.

Things I'd like to get done this week between ail that include putting the Yule tree up,  watering all the plants in the apartment,  doing my laundry (I got it into the cart Sunday,  but left it at home accidentally).  I'd also like to go use the gym some more at the apartment complex. Oh,  and I need to put the stiff I pulled out of the closets back in. Just little things,  really,  but things I've been too tired to accomplish of late.  Oh,  and I need to schedule a CT scan because of something that cropped up on an x-ray.  I was going to go to a Web conference at UK tomorrow,  but something more urgent came up.  My head is just about spinning.  But hey,  I'll figure it all out,  and get what needs to be done finished.

In the meantime,  I applied for a job for which I am well-qualified.  Keep your fingers crossed for me. It's even another hospital librarian position,  similar to what I do now but at a larger institution,  administered by a university,  so it's a faculty position renewable yearly.  I would really love to get it. We'll see.  Wish me luck.

Also,  they posted the position of the woman I'm filling in for in scheduling.  I don't want to give up my librarian job,  which pays more than most of the clerical jobs in the hospital, (although the data entry job pays much less,  so it rounds down, and the result could be about the same as her position) just to have a position that would go to the new building. But I don't love scheduling.  I love being a librarian.  I'm not saying I wouldn't take a position outside of librarianship to make ends meet if we get down to the wire in terms of the elimination of my position,  but I'm not ready to give up on my library career yet.  :)

Okay,  I'm blogging on my phone,  and this is a long post for that.  Let me see how much damage autocorrect has done and wrap this up.  Hope you had a happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Pooped

Each Sunday, we play a dice-and-paper role-playing game, Call of Cthulhu, which is based off of HP H P Lovecraft's horror fiction of the 1920s and 1930s. We have been playing most weekends since 1991. Really. Same story line. Our characters have kids now. "_Each Sunday, we play a dice-and-paper role-playing game, Call of Cthulhu, which is based off of HP H P Lovecraft's horror fiction of the 1920s and 1930s. We have been playing most weekends since 1991. Really. Same story line. Our characters have kids now. :) But I'm glad we cancelled today because frankly I needed to rest after doing Thanksgiving yesterday. Thank goodness for four-day weekends. How on earth do you people do Black Friday after cooking and eating on Thanksgiving? I don't get it. smile emoticon I had no energy, ached all over, and was just blah all day as I recuperated. But the food and companionship was worth it. But I'm glad we cancelled today because frankly I needed to rest after doing Thanksgiving yesterday. Thank goodness for four-day weekends. How on earth do you people do Black Friday after cooking and eating on Thanksgiving? I don't get it. :) I had no energy, ached all over, and was just blah all day as I recuperated. But the food and companionship was worth it.
    This year's Thanksgiving menu:
  • Bleu Cheese Gougères
  • Pumpkin Soup
  • Quorn Turk'y Roast (fake vegetarian turkey made from fungous)
  • Braised Brussels Sprouts, Chestnuts, and Pearl Onions (this is what I accidentally put white wine into, but was very good nonetheless)
  • Butternut Squash Tian with Herbed Breadcrumbs
  • Mashed Potatoes
  • Green Beans with Shallots and Garlic
  • Rolls
  • Chickpea and Cucumber Salad with Cumin
  • Pumpkin Pie
It was scaled back from previous years, but it still kicked my butt. I cooked under direction, but did all the prep work, stirring, etc. The real cook, who was directing everything, wasn't up to much more than overseeing and putting a spice or two in to taste. Even A was put to work, and he peeled two pounds of pearl onions, just about. I peeled 10 lbs of potatoes, and peeled and slice two butternut squash--easier than kabocha, but still, it's amazing my arms work today, especially with the stirring. But it was fun, it was great, and my mistake was okay and I think it came out really well. But I'm going to go to bed early and hopefully tomorrow will be less painful and more productive. Good night!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Who knew

That eight hours of cooking for Thanksgiving could leave you in this much pain?  Everything hurts.  The food was wonderful,  mind you,  even the dish I accidentally put wine into,  but I am so very tired.  Hopefully the ibuprofen will kick in and I can sleep. My feet feel like they are on fire.

Friday, November 27, 2015

We started working on our belated Thanksgiving dinner tonight

Making an excellent pumpkin soup and a chickpea/cucumber salad with cumin. Earlier today, YKWIA and I watched Inside Out, which was quite excellent. I definitely would be Sadness--she was so like me, and YKWIA kept pointing it out. He is most like Disgust. The story was wonderful. There is a part of the movie where a character makes a great sacrifice, and I bawled like a little kid. So I definitely got into it.

I went looking for my back brace today and in the midst of emptying closets and pulling stuff out, found the holiday ornaments. I seriously thought I might put the tree up tonight, but I got home at 11 pm, so I'm not going to do it now--maybe sometime during the weekend, but not right now.

Tomorrow I'm going to go over to my friends' around 10 am and work on the Quorn fake turkey goodness, the vegetable dishes, and dessert. We plan on eating about 3 pm. :)

Okay, I think I'll go on to bed. Good night.

Okay, I have to admit, this is adorable

Trouble Will Be None the Wiser to a Cute Owl Security Camera
The Ulo is a connected surveillance camera that stands out with an interesting, toy-like design. Adorable isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when talking about security footage but this little device takes it there.

The pear-shaped device features two round 1.22-inch screens that shine as the owl’s eyes. Hidden underneath its reflective nose are a camera, motion sensor and a microphone. It has a rechargeable battery and connects to a home’s Wi-Fi network which it uses to stream live video or photos.

When the “Alert Mode” is engaged, the eyes turn off for stealth and every movement detected will be converted into a GIF and sent through email. Once your smartphone reconnects to your home network, this Alert Mode turns off.

When active, the eyes follow around any motion. They look tired when the Ulo needs a charge and shine bright when plugged in.

If Samsung wants to sell me another phone

they will have to reinstate expandable memory as a part of their handset. It looks like they might just do that:

Android Circuit: Samsung Galaxy S7 U-Turn, Apple Suffocates Android, Galaxy Note 5 Defeated
Samsung Revives Memory Card Support

One of the big omissions in Samsung’s high-end devices in 2015 has been the loss of expandable memory. The removal of microSD card support saw a huge backlash from fans of the Galaxy devices – especially Galaxy Note users. Reports from HDBlog.it suggest that those complaints have been heard and microSD is on the way back in 2016. Forbes’ Jay McGregor:
Samsung of late has more a pragmatism to it. It’s willing to shun convention in order to secure sales, which it showed by bringing forward the release of the Note 5 and the (rumoured) early release of the S7. It’s likely that Samsung has had serious discussions about a possible return of the microSD slot in its flagship line. Even the notorious leakster, Evan Blass, predicted back in August that the Korean company could make an about-face for a future Samsung flagship.
I also thought this was a fun quote about Apple vs. Samsung:
Unlike the early days of the smartphone era, the current crop of smartphones have a relatively fixed hardware platform. Your flagship devices are going to offer a broadly similar feature set, from camera output and screen displays, to chipset benchmarks and battery performance. There will naturally be areas where phone ‘A’ is slightly better than phone ‘B’ but for everyday use the sweet spot of current smartphone technology covers the vast majority of manufacturers’ main devices.

The catch is not in building a cutting-edge smartphone, it’s making a cutting-edge smartphone that people believe is a cutting-edge smartphone that they want to buy. This is Apple’s core strength. Samsung can parade the technology for the Galaxy range, but the knee-jerk reaction is that it has all been seen before in the iPhone… even if the technology itself debuted in a Samsung handset.
UPDATE, 12/5/15: According to new rumours, the microSD capability of an S7 may be in doubt.

Saw this on Facebook and laughed, a lot

This is so true of cats.

I am actually the only child of an only child

Only children are actually totally normal, according to science
Bill and Hillary have one. Franklin D. Roosevelt was one. And the chances are you probably know one or two. Even I have one of the selfish, lonely, and maladjusted creatures said to be populating America in greater numbers every year. I am referring to the “only child,” also known as singletons or onlies.

Despite the only child being a growing demographic, having one still attracts a surprising amount of criticism. At a playground in London, one mother told me she thought having an only child was tantamount to child abuse as she watched my daughter toddle alone in the sandbox. When I told my mother that I probably wouldn’t have any more children, she exclaimed disparagingly that one child was “simply not a family.” My husband, on the other hand, has not had any of these accusations leveled against him. The shaming of mothers of singletons is yet another arena in which guilt, scorn, and impossibly high expectations are heaped upon women, encouraged by society’s biased views.
After complications in my mom's pregnancy, my parents were told not to try again for at east several years, if at all, and when I was about school-age, my mother had her tubes tied. I don't know if she ever received any comments about not having more children, but I certainly have had plenty of the 'how sad, you never learned X because you didn't have siblings'. Any maladjustment, and there was plenty, in my psyche growing up, I suspect, had more to do with moving every 18 months or so as a military brat without siblings, rather than the actual lack of siblings. I attended three junior highs in three states across the US, for example, all in the space of two school years. Besides, I was a bookish child who played fine with other children, but preferred to sit in my house and read. True, I tended to have one or two close friends at the most. I was the youngest in my class (I'd skipped first grade because I could read at a third grade level), and between being smart and nerdy and somewhat socially inept, I certainly was not popular, and I was bullied, but I think that had more with skipping grades than being an only child. Because I was almost invisible in my home, and did not receive much positive attention or encouragement, my entire self-esteem depended on how I did in school, and in retrospect, I was one of those insufferable know-it-alls whose hand always shot up in class, so while I didn't 'deserve' bullying, in retrospect, I understand some of the reasons for it. In junior high a group of girls broke my glasses and tore my coat when they jumped me on the way home from school. In high school someone put gum in my hair (and my mom didn't know the peanut butter trick, so my hair got cut off), and then there were the fish guts from biology class that were put in my biology book in my locker. Not the terrible things that are done by kids to kids today, of course, but bullying nonetheless. By the time I got to the high school from which I graduated, I was in my junior year, was trying to handle my parents' divorce, and quite frankly had learned to keep a low-profile. I didn't really make friends with my peers, and only really interacted with the teachers. Was that because I was an only child? No, not really. Maybe if I'd had a sibling to talk things out with, when there was so much emotional baggage to be had, it might have make things better, but I don't really think so. I don't think it would have been better to have a sibling in that family dynamic--there'd just be two of us scarred, and I think a boy would have fared much worse.

I myself have made the decision years ago not to have children. One, the population is high as it is. Two, I am not emotionally or financially in a position to be a good mother, and I know it. Three, any child of mine is at a risk of genetic predispositions that I don't want to pass on. So yes, I'm glad I never had children. Am I being selfish about it? No. Would I change my mind if I were in a good relationship? No, not at this point in my life. While I am still possibly fertile, I am not going to start a family at age 48. At one point I considered adoption, but am not financially stable for that. Besides, while I like kids on principle and believe we should all protect children and encourage their strengths, I do not have an easy rapport with them. So I'll let good parents do their job. I just wish the bad parents weren't in the position to have kids, to be honest.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Of course, come to think of it, this was my mom's favourite of theirs



Actually, several Simon and Garfunkel songs talk about suicide and depression. A friend calls them the Prozac of popular music, but I disagree. Even when the music is upbeat, it's deeper than a lot of what you hear today. Okay, now for that nap!

The song I considered a sort of theme song growing up

Is that bad? It is a somewhat disturbing song, and I'm talking about feeling that way from say, age 8.

Sharing this again, just because it makes me happy...

For YKWIA, who loves goats

Update

Thanksgiving dinner has been postponed till Saturday, tomorrow I'm going to go get a friend's meds and we're going to watch Inside Out, Sunday there will be no game. Today I've spent time with my friends, reading to the one who's been in bed most of the day trying to keep ahead of the pain left from his procedure. Also, my other friend and I went for a nice walk with one of the dogs, who was very excited when she saw ducks in the pond, but fairly indifferent when she encountered geese. The only problem with walk was that the entire asphalt circuit was covered in piles of what I surmise to be goose poop, so we really had to watch where we were going. Anyway, it was a restful and pleasant day. I have some things to do here at home, but I'm going to take a short nap first, since I didn't sleep well last night.

Anyway, if you celebrated Thanksgiving on, well, Thanksgiving, then I hope you had a safe and happy one with loved ones.

I did not sleep well

despite coming in about 7:30 last night and going to sleep by about 8 pm. But then I was up from midnight to 1 am, no matter how tired I was. After that I tossed all night. I may have had too much caffeine by the time I went back to bed. Yesterday and Monday I'd taken care of a friend who was having some issues. Yesterday he had a painful procedure that should have lasted maybe 30-45 minutes but wound up taking 3 hours. I had to cancel my appointment for physical therapy at the last minute because it ran so long, plus he was in pain and I didn't feel like I could leave him. This is someone with a very high pain threshold, but this really hurt him. After someone else came home, I went and did some grocery shopping, and got some things for him.

This morning my lower back is feeling much worse, and I could probably have used PT yesterday. I'm thinking of going over to the complex gym to walk to see if it would help some. In the meantime, I've got the Macy's Parade on. I like the Rose Parade better, to be honest. And NBC is mostly just talking to various NBC stars with the parade in the background, without showing much, so frankly I think I'll turn it off. You may ask, why are we not cooking today? We've put off Thanksgiving till tomorrow to give my friend, who is the cook, some time to recuperate. In the meantime I'm going to go over there later and spend some time with them. But first, I think I'm going to see if I can stretch out my back.

I just called A and my friend is doing better, and his doctor called to check on him this morning. We decided we'd go for a walk later because the weather is so pleasant (it supposed to be sunny and 64 degrees today), so I'll forego the treadmill for now.

Anyway, Happy Thanksgiving!

Found this on Facebook

And thought I'd post it here.

Twenty-six things about me...
A- Age: 48
B- Biggest fear: Abandonment
C- Current mood:  Tired
D- Drink you last had: Diet Sunkist
E- Every day starts with: Shower
F- Favourite song: 'Scarborough Fair/Canticle'  by Simon and Garfunkel
G- Ghosts, are they real?: Yes
H- Hometown: Danville
I- In love with: No one.
J- Jealous of: No one.
K- Killed someone?: No.
L- Last time you cried?:) Watching 'The Librarians' - over the death of the sword Excalibur.  Really.
M- Middle name: I have two - Eilir Aranea
N- Number of siblings: 0
O- One wish: That I could find my dream job before mine goes away.
P- Person you last called: YKWIA
Q- Question you're always asked: So you're a librarian. Do you get to read all day?
R- Reason to smile: I have great friends.
S- Song last sang: 'Stitches' by Shawn Mendes
T- Time you woke up: 5:45 am
U- Underwear color: Purple
V- Vacation destination: Great Britain
W- Worst habit: Eating poorly
Y- Your favourite food: Mashed potatoes
X- X-Rays you've had: Spine,  Feet/ankles,  Teeth,  Chest, Hands
Z- Zodiac sign: Aries

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Having a quiet evening at home

Mainly because I don't have the gas to go anywhere; I've already travelled 10 miles on my gas light and won't get paid till tomorrow. I have yesterday's debit for a quarter of a tank of gas (which I went through in going to four doctors' appointments plus the pharmacy with a friend), so I didn't want to take the chance of overdraughting the account, and since it's down to 59 cents, that would pretty much be what would happen. So I've been home for about an hour and forty-five minutes and I've been mostly enjoying the quiet and thinking about what I need to do over the next few days, and how best to accomplish it. So here are some of my upcoming plans:
    Tonight:
  1. Put away the laundry, including the hand washables I'd hung up on Sunday to dry.
  2. Straighten up just a bit and put away the things for the trip and various things I scattered while packing.
  3. Load the dishwasher and do a few plastic cups by hand.
  4. Get the reimbursement request from the trip together.
    Tomorrow:
  1. Work out in the complex gym.
  2. Get gas.
  3. Get creamer for a friend and take it to him before work.
  4. Go in early to work.
  5. Work a half day, and get things in shape for over Thanksgiving.
  6. Take a friend to the dentist.
  7. Get my allergy shots.
  8. Go to physical therapy.
  9. Make any last preparations for Thanksgiving with my friend.
  10. Pay bills.
    Thanksgiving:
  1. Prepare and cook under a friend's supervision.
  2. Eat Quorn goodness and a variety of vegetarian dishes.
  3. Spend time with friends.
  4. Call my mom and check up on her.
    Friday (off from work):
  1. Work out.
  2. Work on a cover letter for a job that's due November 30th.
  3. Work on the game notes.
  4. Spend time with friends.
    Saturday:
  1. Do the grocery run.
  2. Work out.
    Sunday:
  1. Prepare the house for gaming.
  2. Game.
UPDATE: Thanksgiving is postponed to Friday; details above. I managed to get a few things done, but given the trip's lingering effects, trying to get things caught up at work, taking care of a friend, visiting my relative who was in the hospital, and running all over town, I've mostly been coming home and crashing before 9 am and getting up very early.

Okay, search engines can never replace a trained librarian, but

I love to be able to Google anything and normally find something to help me with my question. For example, I weighed myself this morning, and decided to see how different it was between morning and evening. But somehow my scale got set to kg when I pulled it out from its place this evening. I didn't see anything, tried resetting it by taking the battery out, and when that didn't work, went to Google. Apparently there's a switch that's on there but it's the type you depress to toggle the unit of measure on the back, and I'd accidentally managed to depress that. I turned the scale on (you step a foot on the scale to do that), depressed the switch, which does blend in with the rest of the underside, and I had pounds rather than kilograms again. And oh, by the way, even though I'm not having swollen ankles like I did when it was hot, I'd gained 8 lbs in water weight over the course of the day, which is why I don't consider it significant until about 15 lbs. Yesterday, I weighed myself with clothes and shoes on (I don't normally do that), and it was 10 lbs higher than this morning.

Monday, November 23, 2015

This actually might get me in the holiday mood. :)

Technically it's 'Pedestrian on foot injured in collision with other nonmotor vehicle in nontraffic accident, initial encounter', but I love this interpretation.

Whew!

Our apartment complex built a fitness centre/new laundry and it opened last week. With the trip, this was my first chance to check it out. I got up really early. I started small with my workout -- 6 minutes on the bike, followed by 12 minutes on the treadmill. Now I'm sweaty and feel good about myself. It's just for residents, and has a key fob security system. I am much more likely to exercise with this available, where I can shower at home before work, than I ever did at a gym. There are also towels and a water station. And though I usually do laundry at my friends' house, it's nice to finally have one that isn't down a narrow staircase in the basement.



Sunday, November 22, 2015

I have now visited exactly half the states in the Union

  1. Alabama
  2. Arizona
  3. Arkansas
  4. California
  5. Georgia
  6. Illinois
  7. Indiana
  8. Kansas
  9. Kentucky
  10. Louisiana
  11. Maryland
  12. Michigan
  13. Minnesota
  14. Mississippi
  15. Missouri
  16. New Mexico
  17. North Carolina
  18. Ohio
  19. Oklahoma
  20. Pennsylvania
  21. South Carolina
  22. Tennessee
  23. Texas
  24. Virginia
  25. West Virginia
I just added Michigan, even if I only saw the Detroit airport. Note, I still haven't visited Florida, the only Southern state not on my list, and the one everyone seems to have been to. Okay, now to bed. Good night.

I started my day out

visiting my relative who was still in the hospital. The good news is she got to go home today. The bad news is she fell coming into the house and they had to call 911. The ambulance driver was able to get her back on her feet. That's pretty worrisome. My family is texting back and forth to see if we can help with that.

I spent a couple of hours over there and then went and visited my friends, although I forgot to put my laundry in until I'd been there about three hours, and I was so tired that after I visited for awhile, one of them basically sent me home because it was obvious, so I have hand washables that have been washed but are still damp to hang up. Then I think I really will go on to bed, as I'm still a little jet-lagged from all the flying and walking I did at the end of the week.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

This makes me so sick

I thought the last story was horrific. But this? Words fail me.

Toddler Fatally Burned, Put Into Oven by Sibling: Documents
Police believe J'zyra was one of four children who had been left alone Monday by their mother and her boyfriend when the girl and two of her siblings began playing with the oven. CPS says the couple left the four kids home alone without telling a grandmother who lived in the same apartment complex.


FATHER OF SIBLINGS OF TODDLER BURNED TO DEATH TRIES TO FIND HIS CHILDREN
Court records show Price's two kids, just three years old, told investigators that one of them put the baby in the oven, and the other turned it on. Records show the children told CPS workers they made the oven "hot", and that the baby was kicking the oven door while inside. Records also show Thompson tried CPR when she got home. But it was too late, the child had multiple burns.

CPS said no suitable relatives can care for the three surviving children from the home, so they are currently in foster care. Thompson also has an older child who lives with his father. In addition, she is seven months pregnant with her current boyfriend's child. Thompson apparently also drove the kids without a license nor car seats.