Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Well, yes, that's a no-brainer

but it's alarming that the number of psychiatrists who perform psychotherapy rather than just medical management is declining. It can't all be reduced to a pill, although medications can do a lot. I think we rely too much on 'brief supportive visits' such as mentioned in the article for our mental health care. I've only had clinical social workers and trainee psychologists as therapists, and they're a mixed bag. I think I have a decent counselor now, but I sometimes wonder if I don't need fairly intensive psychotherapy from a trained physician.

Long-term psychotherapy is superior, study finds

How horrible

Md. Mother Jailed After Bodies Of 2 Children Found in Freezer

The kicker? All three girls--the 9- and 11-year-old presumed dead (they're waiting for the bodies to thaw before they can be identified) and the 7-year-old whose escape alerted a neighbour to the tragedy--were adopted by the woman after being fostered by her, meaning that at some point there should have been oversight into placing these children in her care. There's no record that the children were sent to school. Neighbours didn't know the woman even had children; they were hidden away. The weird thing, too is that the presumption is that the children died in another town, and their bodies were moved when the woman moved to the new place. Why would anyone do that? Why wouldn't you try to bury the bodies somewhere?

I am so glad that this little girl was able to sneak out of her locked room and alert the authorities, and that the neighbour took her story of beatings and dead sisters seriously.

Listening to a couple of dark songs

Dave Matthews' 'Gravedigger' (long version) [embedding disabled]

Metallica's 'Unforgiven'

Monday, September 29, 2008

I'm getting a late start on my first day of vacation

but since I got two hours' sleep on Saturday night, I'm cool with that. I just ate breakfast I think today will be relax day as a transition into working on projects, since there's not much time to work on notes or clean this afternoon. I have an appointment with my counselor at 3 pm, and I'm working an extra shift for my boss from 4-8. Then there's Heroes! I didn't have my Internet connexion when it premiered, so I didn't blog, but let me tell you, I was very excited. And Mohinder has gone down the much-travelled road of comic book mad scientist geniuses who inject themselves with untested serums. Agh! I'm not sure what he's transforming into (insectoid, perhaps), but it's no doubt going to be very, very bad, and hard to hide. I hope I can do an hour or so of notes tonight.

I spent part of my time last night on the site for the newest Saturday Night Live's Palin sketch (with Amy Poehler as Katie Couric interviewing Tina Fey as Sarah Palin). It's not as funny as last week, but the comments were very intersting. A person writing under the name CristinaMariaV refers to Obama as the anti-Christ and makes several racist comments about Jews and Blacks. I went ahead and flagged the racist comments because, well, although I believe in free speech, it doesn't really apply to hate speech. It was good to see that several other comments were people writing against such racist remarks. You can't take anything on the Internet at face value, but this person (who I assume is female, but have no proof) left remarks that give a particularly nasty look at an ignorant and racist mind.

Okay, I'm going to go for now. Have a great day!

I'm heading to bed

I only got two hours' sleep last night (I was working on notes), but I start a week's vacation at job #1 tomorrow with plans to work on the house, get some rest, and get caught up on said notes. (I'm working quite a lot at job #2, although not the 30 hours I thought I was. I showed up for work on Friday to find the schedule had changed. So I'm only working 26 hours. Normally it's 15-23.) I worked 10 hours on Saturday, which only made the lack of sleep more palpable.

The game was good today, as another storyline was concluded. There's not much for me to do other than take notes and have my pregnant character deal with such mundane horrors as the IRS and answer the phone when her fellow Guardians are in a panic. But I do enjoy keeping up with the story, even when I'm not actively involved.

That's my weekend in a nutshell. I'll write more tomorrow when I'm more coherent. Good night.

Interesting--a semi-Gregorian chant version of Metallica

Metallica's 'Nothing Else Matters' as covered by Gregorian on their album Masters of Chant:

They have a host of secular songs, many of which are on YouTube. Some examples: 'The Sound of Silence', 'Ordinary World', 'Losing My Religion', 'Blasphemous Rumours', and 'When a Man Loves a Woman'. The German band blends music with the chant, so it's not true Gregorian chant, but the harmonies are beautiful nonetheless.

Here's their version of 'The Sound of Silence', which is quite powerful:

For an example of true Gregorian chant, here is 'Dies Irae', from the 1994 album Ego sum Ressurectio:

My favourite version of 'Dies Irae', though, is the one by Mozart in his Requiem:

Okay, that's enough videos for one night!

Found on a packet of Taco Bell mild sauce

Help! I can't tell where I am. It's dark and I can hear laughing.

Mind you, I take hot sauce. A mild packet found its way into my bag by mistake, which is why I noticed the saying. :)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

I knew his health was failing

but it's hard to believe that Paul Newman is dead at age 83 of cancer. When people think of Hollywood actors, they tend to think of tabloid scandals and bad behaviour by the self-absorbed. But Paul Newman was married to his widow for 50 years, lived away from the glitter of Hollywood in Connecticut, and was a wonderful philanthropist whose line of salad dressings and other food products generated millions for charity. Oh, and he was a great actor, too. :)

He was very vibrant and had a zest for life (he raced cars into his seventies) and I suspect had a lot of charisma and definitely had a lot of class. Most people would be lucky to be remembered so fondly.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Friday, September 26, 2008

Ah, a Cassandra from 1999

TechCrunch's How The U.S. Government Engineered The Current Economic Crisis mentions a 1999 New York Times article where Peter Wallison, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, was quoted as saying:
From the perspective of many people, including me, this [the mortgage industry, which had eased requirements making it easier for people who could not traditionally qualify for loans--and who were less likely to be able to pay them back] is another thrift industry growing up around us. If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.

In other words, another bailout such as what happened in the 80s with the savings and loan industry. Look where we are now. I don't know where Peter Wallison is today, but his predictions were largely ignored.

Sense from a new American citizen geared up for his first chance to vote for president

Craig Ferguson's monologue: 'If you don't vote, you're a moron'

YKWIA stumbled on this one a few days ago.

Okay, I've blogged a lot today. Time to go to bed!

Miss new Harry Potter books?

J.K. Rowling Reveals All In New Book, ‘Harry, A History’

Okay, it's the historian inside that gets me all excited about this

Library to share 14th-century royal cookbook online: Collection of recipes compiled by King Richard II's cooks among several works being digitised for viewing on internet

Thanks to Blake on LISNews (who in turn got it from Charley Hively) for the link.

Good grief

Okay, let me point out that witchcraft is real, although it's not what most people think it is, and many of the people who think they are witches are deluded. But isn't it good to know that the potential vice-president of our country has been blessed so evil witches don't get her?

Palin pastor prayed for 'witchcraft' protection: YouTube video shows McCain running mate being blessed at church service

You can see the video with the news story.

Who thought this was a good idea?

A distraught, naked man who was out on a ledge in New York city was tasered by police and fell to his death. I ask you, what did the police officer expect to happen?

Man falls to death after police stun gun shock: Officials probe whether officer violated guidelines; new focus on Taser use

Another odd thing in the news related to cops...

Man charged with battery for farting near cop: Police say suspect passed 'very odorous' gas during breathalyzer test

I have great respect for the police, but these stories take the cake.

I'm thinking about getting a lifetime membership

to LibraryThing. You get to put in 200 books for free but I have substantially more than that. It's $10 per year or $25 for a lifetime membership for individuals.

I'm also considering putting my library catalogue there, for $15/year. I was using LibraryWorld but with everyone these days worrying about stretching budgets, the $365/year fee is just too much.

I've got more books personally than the library has books. Most of our collection centres around our journals. Between the medical library and the family resource centre, I think we have about 1,600 books. I've probably got about 3,000. A friend has far more, but I think he'd rather have an old-fashioned card catalogue rather than a database.

Speaking of cataloguing software for personal collections, Libra is an interesting program that displays your books, CDs, DVDs, etc. on shelves graphically. It's free for non-commercial use and easy to use, and it automatically looks up the item based on identifiers just like LibraryThing and most programs do today.

Cthulhu made it at #26

right under Sauron on the list of 50 greatest villains of literature. Voldemort was #5, and Cruella de Vil is just two steps behind Satan. Check it out.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


via JediLibrarian:

Polar Bears Resort to Cannibalism as Arctic Ice Shrinks

Don't believe in global warming? The polar bear's habitat is shrinking so quickly that the bears are starving and attacking each other to survive. But you know the scariest thing about this article?
'Some scientists believe that in just five years, the Arctic may be ice-free during the summer.'

The Arctic without ice? Some people are excited, because new shipping lanes will open up. But at what price? The polar bear is just one piece of the puzzle. As our climate changes, how will it affect the Earth, and of course, us?

People tend to forget that the Earth will survive climatic change, asteroid impacts, nuclear war, etc., although changed. But we won't necessarily, and if we don't do everything we can do to survive, then I guess that's evolution. But I hate the idea of taking other species with us.

I'm home for now

waiting for 'Supernatural' to be over, since a friend won't answer the phone or door during the show. I spent about 2 1/4 hours in the cooler tonight, stocking and organising--with the fans running. That and today's great journal purge made for a good workout, and left me a little tired. I'd like to just go to sleep for a little while. Alas, that is not to be, so I'm eating dinner to get some energy.

I should have stopped by the grocery to get distilled water for my CPAP humidifier. It helps keep my nose and mouth from drying out when I sleep. But I didn't want to make any stops; I actually used the ATM at work to get some money, even with a $2 charge, than to go over to a bank that's a half a block away. My food came from the store, too. I just wanted to go home. I do need to see about getting some wine tonight when I pick a friend up from work, as I have not made my monthly offering. I had quite a few wine bottles in the recyclables today; anyone poking around in my kitchen cabinet would have thought I was an alcoholic, but of course I don't drink the wine--I use it for libations. I just hadn't cleaned out the cabinet in awhile.

I think I may try to zone out in my comfy chair for a few minutes. It's not quite as nice as sleep, but I find it relaxing. I just let my mind wander; often I get insights into the game that way. :)

I'm proud of myself

I got all of the recyclables over to Good Foods Co-op, rather than procrastinating and leaving them in my car until I had to move them or some such. I didn't know drink cases weren't recyclable, though, so I have a bag of some of them to go to the trash. I think I have a small storage container that would serve as a recycling bin so I could just empty it when it gets full, rather than putting them in bags. I also got some other errands done as well, all in about an hour and a half, with enough time to blog between jobs.

I'm working 30 hours at the store this week (starting today, through Wednesday--that's our schedule week for some reason), making for a total of 50 hours. Certainly doable, but I'm used to about 35-40. I'd really like to get more done on the notes and the house. I'm considering taking off at the hospital to get more done. Fortunately I have plenty of vacation time (over 25 days; you should see my sick time...we don't touch it unless we're sick more than three days, so I've used it once for a flu; I have 94 days extended illness leave. That's good, though, if something came up, like Gods forbid I found out I had cancer or had to have surgery or something liek that. They buy back your sick leave after 500 hours, but since I'm only part-time I don't accrue that quickly. I'm over 353, but not likely to hit 500 for a few more years at least. :) Anyway, I could use the money from working so much at the store, and I'd still get paid at the hospital if I took time off for fall cleaning.

Speaking of which, I recycled a whole lot of journals today as part of our clean up of the storage areas. (Ones I'd weeded and weren't taken on BackMed, the list for exchanging journal issues). First I had to go find my book truck; it had wandered off. I have a few more boxes of books to find a home for (I cannot bring myself to throw away books, even if they're recyclable, and anyway, these are in good condition; I just don't have a need for them) and about a third again as many journals to recycle. That leaves my space pretty neat and orderly. (And I put a sign on the cart so people wouldn't move it around. We'll see if that works, hah!) I discovered that a big trash bin (4 feet by 5 feet, I'd say, and about 4 feet wide) full of journals does not roll well on carpet. I really worked up a sweat! That's why I'm leaving the rest for tomorrow, but it shouldn't be as bad.

Anyway, that's what's going on in my life. Oh, and I had to put my piercing earrings back in my ears because my left ear's hole is trying to close up again. I'd left it in about 6 weeks last time, but haven't worn earrings for about three months. Obviously I need to invest in some post earrings (most of mine that are intact in terms of pairs are French hook ones).

I'll probably blog tonight if I'm not too tired. As always, thanks for reading.


I didn't get up early and clean like I did yesterday, because I got home about 1:30 am and stayed up to 2:30. But the house does look a little better from my endeavours yesterday. And I have a bunch of recyclables in the car I'm taking to the co-op between the two jobs today.

For it is also payday, and I have money for gas. The only reason I was able to go over to a friend's yesterday and pick his husband up from work was because a random lady in the parking lot at work, who had seen me check a gift card to see if there was money on it, gave me $4, and then the manager who was filling in for my boss (who just had her wisdom teeth out) told me to pump another $4 that he'd kicked in. So thank you to both of them. I've done the same for others, so I guess it's coming back to me. So the first order of business today is to go by the store and get some gas and some money, and then go to job #1, where my goal is to clean out storage in our attic as part of our big 'fall haul'. I work the truck tonight, but I've got two hours between jobs and I need to run some errands--the recyclables and also I have something waiting for me at my post office, which is on the south end of the big double circle with radiating streets that is Lexington. I'm on the east side. I only know of five post offices in town, although there may be more. But I'm in another zip code entirely from this one and it's about 8 miles away. Makes no sense that it would be the closest, hmm? Oh, well.

Okay, I'd better go. Whenever I go to the store I usually get sucked into a conversation with my boss, and so I'll need some extra time. :)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A quick post

Today's fortune cookie fortune: 'There is beauty in simplicity.'

Listening to: Delta Goodrem's 'In this Life' (Lyrics)


The Atrocity Archives by Charles Stross (think Cthulhu meets Dilbert)
Favourite line so far (if you're sensitive to profanity, skip this part): Having survived the tentacled horror that attacked her on the way up to her flat--
'What the hell was that? she asks, rubbing her throat.
'That was what we call in the trade an Unscheduled Reality Excursion, usually abbreviated to "Oh, fuck."'

Necroscope IV: Deadspeak by Brian Lumley
An HP Lovecraft Anthology by HP Lovecraft
(I would embed the last book, but the script aborts the page load on Internet Explorer 7 (although it works fine in Firefox)). Oh, well. I have a comment in to the developer; maybe there's a solution. But I found one that does work: click on the button below and the book will pop up. :)

(Sorry, it doesn't show up on Google Reader. I don't know about other RSS services.)

As you've no doubt surmised, my Internet connexion is back. Yay!


I started back into therapy Monday. Both my therapist and the nurse practitioner who manages my medicines realised that I was having trouble with depression. My Lamictal was upped to 300 mg per day.

I was honest and told them that my house had gotten overwhelming. I tend to hoard. Like my weight, I do this to keep people away from any sort of intimacy or in 'my space'. I have a very high ignore skill when it comes to clutter, but it makes me miserable at the same time.

So my homework was to do a little a day to make the house better, so that it wouldn't be so overwhelming. That same day I got a notice from our landlords that they're doing a walkthrough of the apartments to check on things today through Friday. The pest control people are also coming today. So I had a little incentive. I knew that I couldn't get the house clean, but I thought I might be able to get it looking a little better.

I concentrated on the mounds of paper, old mail, mostly, plus getting the recyclables out of the house and ready to take to Good Foods' bins. I got up at 7:30 and I've been working ever since. The result? Four lawn-size bags of recyclables plus some drink cartons for recycling, and two more bags of mostly paper mixed with trash that will go to the dumpster on my way to work. The house looks better, and I can see my chair and sofa. I still couldn't find my Obama sticker, though. :( I'll have to see about getting another one. I probably put it in a 'safe place'.

Next on the list is to work on the kitchen, do more dishes, etc. I probably should have done that first but the sheer amount of paper was really getting to me. Hopefully they'll do my apartment tomorrow or Friday.

It's really hard to believe

that it's been a year since I had Cerys put down. I miss her, especially when I see people walking their dogs. But I know it was the right thing to do, and she was so frail, it would have been a matter of time anyway. This way she went without suffering.

I've kind of gotten used to a petless house. I've had pets since I was 13, so it seemed odd at first. Every now and then I think of getting a kitten, but let's face it, I'm rarely home--it wouldn't be fair to him or her.

That's pretty much it. I hope wherever she is, Cerys is happy. I doubt dogs have a soul, but I do believe they have a spirit of some sort. And wherever dogs go after death, I hope it's a pleasant place.

Goodbye, my 'beloved' [Cerys is Welsh for 'beloved']. I miss you, my faithful companion.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

I feel a little like I dodged a bullet

The good news: my electric bill is paid. I thought I might not be able to, and I barely did.

The bad news: I have $10 and some change to my name until Thursday, and slightly over a quarter of a tank of gas. This should be an interesting week.

Fortunately I get paid at both jobs next week. The only thing that saved me this week is that we got our quarterly bonus at the store, so my cheque was much higher than usual, plus I've been working more.

Today feels strange because I'm only working 3-5 at the store, and not during the truck delivery, either, which I'm almost always there for. She has me working 3-5 most weekedays this coming week, except for Monday, where I have a couple of doctor's appointments.

One nice thing about this for tonight is that I can watch the premiere of 'Supernatural' over at a friend's. And I'm very excited about the return of 'Heroes' on Monday--again, I happened to be able to get off. Yay!

Okay, time to go to work, to get more money, to keep the necessities running. Hope to post soon.

One more thing before I go to bed

I've restored most of the links I had on the sidebar from the old design. I hope that's useful. I haven't gone through and weeded links, though I plan to do that soon.

PS Doing this reminded me of one broken address that hasn't been on the lists for quite awhile, which in turn reminded me that I've been thinking of someone whose blog I used to read faithfully, but who dropped offline as near as I can tell a long while ago. He was having some rather difficult issues with depression and I'm hoping he's okay somewhere. It's John Cumisky, who was in North Wales last I heard from him, in 2005. Anyway, if you're out there, John, drop me a line and let me know how you're doing, okay? Thanks!

I know my fear of flying is illogical

and stories such as this should alleviate it; but they don't.

Century after first fatality, safety is in the air: Beyond ‘experimental stage,’ flying is by far the safest way to travel

It contains some interesting history in the matter of Orville Wright's doomed 1908 flight that claimed the world's first aeroplane crash fatality, passenger Lt Thomas Selfridge, as well as some statistics on the comparative safety of flying.

Lexington Public Library's Friends of the Library book sale coming soon

The Friends of the Library’s huge used book sale will run from Saturday, October 11, through Sunday, October 19, at Millpond Center (in the old Gold’s Gym) at the corner of Man o’ War Boulevard and Boston Road.

The sale will begin with a day just for Friends members, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, October 11. Memberships will be available at the door.

The schedule after Friends Day will be:

Noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, October 12.

10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, October 13 through 17.

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, October 18. Two-for-One Day.

Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, October 19. Bag Day (buy a bag for $2 and fill it for free).

Friends membership prices:

Individual: $10
Household: $20
Patron: $30
Sponsor: $50+
Lifetime: $200

Membership includes:
This basic membership entitles you to receive the print version of the Library's monthly calendar of events, 10% discount on purchases in Friends Book Cellar, entrance to Preview Night at Friends Book Sales, and volunteer opportunities.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I may be online haphazardly for the next few days

as once again, I've had to choose housing, food, and the necessities over paying my cable Internet bill from Insight. I really need to see if I can adjust my billing cycle, since it seems I'm always about a week off in terms of restricting my service. I'll be able to next Thursday, though. At least it's just a 'soft' disconnect, so I won't have to pay a reconnect fee. In the meantime, I'll try to blog from the library at least a few times over that space. I just wanted to give you a head's up. I don't know when I'll lose it, either, so I'll try to blog some before it goes. But right now I'm going to work on game notes. :)

By the way, I was off today from the hospital (hence the blog post in the middle of the day). I worked some on my kitchen and got some rest. I had plans for more, but I'm glad I did get some things done, at least. I'll try to do some more work on the house before I go to sleep.

A fun parody

of Timbaland's 'The Way I Are' from the grammar police. :)

'Bad Grammar - The Way I Are Parody' featuring HotforWords and Sheena Melwani by JamesAtWar

Another one YKWIA showed me. Thanks!

There's a story for the grandchildren

In midst of Ike, lion's OK: Texans ride out storm in church with zoo animal

Got that via Pauline Jones on Twitter.

This is absolutely hilarious!

It's a Hilllary Clinton and Sarah Palin sketch from Saturday Night Live. Thanks to YKWIA for sharing it with me.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Listening to

Natasha Bedingfield's:

Pocketful of Sunshine--catchy, stays in your head.

Unwritten (the video features a climbing book) :) [I like this one much better than the one in which she is in the elevator.]

Both of the above have embedding disabled, but I've provided links to the videos.

and finally, before sleep, 'Carolan's Dream' on Celtic harp, arranged and played by Mark Harmer:

Very nice. Whilst on his channel, I found this extract of 'The Epic of Gilgamesh' accompanied by a reconstruction of the Lyre of Ur, destroyed in looting of the Baghad museum, but reconstructed using the same types of materials and tuning according to pipes found in the same grave. It has an almost electronic sound, I think. Anyway, as a student of history, it caught my eye, and I had to include it on the 'odd factor' as well. It's certainly not your average YouTube video. :)

A mystery in the heavens

Hubble Finds Unidentified Object in Space

From Sky & Telescope via Gizmodo by way of Slashdot, with the following blurb submitted by ScuttleMonkey:
Gizmodo is reporting that the Hubble space telescope has found a new unidentified object in the middle of nowhere. Some are even suggesting that this could be a new class of object. Of course, without actually understanding more about it, the speculation seems a bit wild.
The object also appeared out of nowhere. It just wasn't there before. In fact, they don't even know where it is exactly located because it didn't behave like anything they know. Apparently, it can't be closer than 130 light-years but it can be as far as 11 billion light-years away. It's not in any known galaxy either. And they have ruled out a supernova too. It's something that they have never encountered before. In other words: they don't have a single clue about where or what the heck this thing is.

Also from the Gizmodo story:
Apparently, a scientist at the LHC declared that the object is similar to the flash that an Imperial Star Destroyer does when reaching Warp 10, confusing Star Wars and Star Trek.


The object brightened over a 100-day period, then faded over the same period of time. Strange, no?


George Takei marries longtime partner: ‘Star Trek’ star, Brad Altman wed in multi-cultural ceremony

George Takei and his longtime partner, Brad Altman, were married Sunday in a multi-cultural ceremony that featured a Buddhist priest, Native American wedding bands, a Japanese Koto harp and a bagpipe procession

They've been together for 21 years. That's longer than most marriages these days, I'd say--and there are those who would never accept that as a 'committed relationship'. It's nice they have the right to make it official now. Congratulations, guys! Live long and prosper. (I couldn't resist.)

Monday, September 15, 2008

This is pretty neat

Watch a dust devil spin in Martian arctic

YKWIA saw it on his news gadget yesterday, and then it popped up on my reader, too. I can't get the animated picture to run on Blog*Spot, so if you want to watch it without reading the news story, go to the source at:


The little street is no more

There was a small connector street no more than 20 yards long that ran from Richmond Road to South Eagle Creek. There's been construction on the lot bordering it for awhile. I don't know if they're building houses or some sort of church--I've heard both. I cut through it every time I come home that way, except today.

For the little street is no more. Behind the 'road closed' sign, there is no longer pavement. I always thought it was a dumb little shortcut, but it was a shortcut. Now I'll have to go a short ways down and take the winding road through the car lot, alas.

Oh, well, I guess change is inevitable. I'm interested to see what they're going to build on the lot.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

You don't see that every day...

The Fredricksen Library Bookcart Drill Team

Fredricksen Library Bookcart Drill Team

Thanks to the folks at Unshelved for this, plus the following:
Pimp My Bookcart.

Here is a sneak preview of this fall's submissions.

Okay, I really need to go on to bed. Good night.

Some random tidbits

  1. We finished the Antarctic adventure in the game today. Yay! The toll: one of our group is dead (9 total for the expedition, plus two more for the Germans), one lost his right leg, and two have very, very low sanities. All in a good several months' work for our game master. We are all relieved the campaign is over, including the person running it. It has worn us all down. And all the player characters were very new, on their second to fourth missions. All and all I suppose it's surprising we did as well as we did. After all, most of the 'doomed Starkweather-Moore expedition' did come back.
  2. I don't want to sound alarmist or like a hypochondriac [a common thing for me], but a little while ago I was driving along and I noticed that my right eye was numb and a little twitchy, my right hand was numb, and my right foot had pins and needles. A friend said my pupils looked okay and my grip was fine with both hands. It didn't last long. We decided to consider it a by-product of sleep deprivation (I only got two hours' sleep last night) rather than a small stroke. Hopefully, that's the case.
  3. I have been invaded by Drosophila repleta, in the fruit fly family but attracted to not only food but drains. They are small but very annoying.
  4. I am reading Jim Butcher's Death Masks and I was going along on my lunch break yesterday when I realised my book is missing thirty-some odd pages at a crucial juncture. Gah!
  5. Apparently our store ran out of regular unleaded the day of the run on gas (Friday). Down the street they ran out of everything. The gas truck guy said we were the fourth store he'd been to that day without some form of gas, and I got a couple of calls from people wondering if we had any. Fortunately I didn't work on Friday, although I went in to another store and the cars were four deep; Saturday the gas truck arrived and although there were some glitches at the pumps, everything quickly became less frustrating. I know the gas did rise to $3.99, but come on people, did you really believe it would go to nearly $5 or beyond? We have a fairly aggressive attorney general who is quick to prosecute a company for price gouging. The run on gas was enormous and without warrant.

I so need to work more at the beginning of the week on notes

I just finished a six-hour session of notes (with a two-hour break in between at the two-hour mark). But they're finished. Unfortunately, I have to get up at 4 am, so I'll get 1 1/2 hours of sleep unless I have to get someone from work at 3 am.

My life is sometimes more complicated than it ought to be. I'm usually the root cause for that. :)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

I checked out a song, and found a great video about the power of one and many togther

Daughtry, 'What About Now' (embedding disabled)

Shadows fill an empty heart
As love is fading,
From all the things that we are
But are not saying.
Can we see beyond the scars
And make it to the dawn?

Change the colors of the sky.
And open up to
The ways you made me feel alive,
The ways I loved you.
For all the things that never died,
To make it through the night,
Love will find you.

What about now?
What about today?
What if you're making me all that I was meant to be?
What if our love never went away?
What if it's lost behind words we could never find?
Baby, before it's too late,
What about now?

The sun is breaking in your eyes
To start a new day.
This broken heart can still survive
With a touch of your grace.
Shadows fade into the light.
I am by your side,
Where love will find you.

What about now?
What about today?
What if you're making me all that I was meant to be?
What if our love, it never went away?
What if it's lost behind words we could never find?
Baby, before it's too late,
What about now?

Now that we're here,
Now that we've come this far,
Just hold on.
There is nothing to fear,
For I am right beside you.
For all my life,
I am yours.

What about now?
What about today?
What if you're making me all that I was meant to be?
What if our love never went away?
What if it's lost behind words we could never find?

What about now?
What about today?
What if you're making me all that I was meant to be?
What if our love never went away?
What if it's lost behind words we could never find?
Baby, before it's too late,
Baby, before it's too late,
Baby, before it's too late.

I have a few minutes before I have to go to work

at the gas station. Yesterday, there was a gas run in Lexington. The rumour was that a station in Nicholasville had raised its prices to $4.75 (nearly a dollar jump), and that ones in Lexington would follow suit, no doubt because of Ike, the hurricane.

When I stopped by one at Tates Creek and Malabu, they were four deep. I stopped last night at the store down the street from ours; they actually ran out of gas entirely. I said something about the rumour and the clerk told me that his sister said that it was $6 where she lives in Indiana. I don't know about that; I know our attorney general would have a fit and threaten action pretty fast. Near midnight the gas was $3.85. It had risen that morning from $3.71, which seemed reasonable given the hurricane. But $4.75? We'll see.

I wonder what the gas price will be when I go into work--and if we'll get any gas business, since just about everyone except me (I didn't have the money) filled their tank yesterday.

Hee Hee

Here are my results from a personality test from Graham Murkett (SomeGreyBloke):

Ecto-dysmorphic xenotype II
Ecto-dysmorphic xenotype twos are stigmatic and ballistic with a zest for living life in a "downsy" kind of way. Always on the alert for what needs immediate execution or what might provide a bit of action, excitement or entertainment, they engage quickly with their environment and destroy it.They seek and enjoy frottage, are good-natured, direct, and intolerant and are often the ones who provide levity and buns. They have a way with dealing with people on a very equal platform and are not easily defeated. Rank, celebrity and status mean little when they are face to face with another individual. Raw physical power counts for everything.

Watch the video he made about the test:

Take the test yourself: http://www.somegreybloke.com/quiz/intro.html

I love his sense of humour. For more videos, check out his YouTube page.

He has a video from Dan and Dan Films, called 'ConCERNed' about the Large Hadron Collider and the fears of utter annihilation. My favourite quote: 'How do black holes get past Health & Safety, for Christ's sake?' Here it is:

Well, that's enough for now. I have notes to do and sleep to get. Good night.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Forgot to blog about this when it made the news

Superman's story: Did a fatal robbery forge the Man of Steel?

Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster were two awkward Jewish boys from Cleveland who went on to create the Man of Steel. Although he never mentioned it, the inspiration for Superman may be linked to the death of Jerry Siegel's father during a robbery, a crime that was never solved.

An interesting claim that made the news a few days ago

Roman Empire 'raised HIV threat'

French scientists argue that people who lack a particular gene (CCR5-Delta32) seem to be more vulnerable to HIV, and that this is found particularly among those areas that were part of the Roman Empire. It's not because of interbreeding, but rather the result of a disease spread to the areas affected by the Romans. Others argue that other diseases were responsible for the vulnerability, such as bubonic plague.


The New York Times obituary:

Hill, Dorothy R. - passed away on September 4 after a long illness.
Noted medical librarian and co-author of the Brandon/Hill Selected Lists
of Books and Journals for the Small Medical Library; Nursing; and Allied
Health, her work influenced the development of medical library
collections worldwide. Daughter of the late Arthur T. and Ruth Hill,
Dorothy received numerous awards for her work with medical libraries and
had a long career building medical library collections at the University
of Kentucky, Johns Hopkins, and Mount Sinai School of Medicine where she
spent the last 33 years of her career. A gathering in her honor will be
held on Friday, September 12 at 11:00 am at Frank E. Campbell, 1076
Madison Avenue at 81st Street. Interment will be Saturday, September 13
in Springfield, MA.

Listening to

Jimmy Eat World--'The Middle'

Sometimes I really need to hear this one. Tonight's one of those times, and it came on the radio on my way home. :)

Thriving Ivory--'Angels on the Moon'

This was also on the radio. It's new and I have to admit, I like it. It is supposed to have been written in response to the 9/11 attacks, so it's appropriate tonight.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

For those of you who love Maurice Sendak's work

An excellent look into the writer/illustrator's life and personality can be found in:

Concerns Beyond Just Where the Wild Things Are

Things I didn't know about Mr Sendak:

  1. The son of Polish-Jewish immigrants, he lost many relatives in the Holocaust.
  2. Gay, his partner of 50 years died last year. He never told his parents he was gay.
  3. He recently turned 80, despite having a heart attack at 39 and a triple by-pass recently.

Plans coming up

Friday--Shelve all bound/unbound journals and books. Go through my mail, check in journals, and get them all shelved. Print out surveys. Make an appointment with my therapist for sometime around the one I have with my meds manager later in the month, since they're in the same office. Check with the electric company about changing a payment arrangement so that I can pay part on Wednesday, and the rest the next Thursday, when I'll have been paid at both jobs. Do errands with a friend if he needs to, read more Lumley, do notes.

Saturday--Work 10 am-6 pm, finish notes.

Sunday--Go over to gamemaster's house at 5 am. Prepare for game. Do notes if the computer's free, visit otherwise. Play game. Do more notes or regular notes if the computer wasn't free at home.

Monday--Bundle up some books at work to be donated hopefully to another department or to the public library that I can no longer use, mostly adult bestsellers--thrillers, mystery, some sci-fi and romance. Clean out the closet I have for storage so I can then put boxes of children's books for the early literacy project. My cubicle is over-run with them at present and I'm feeling claustrophobic. Work at the store.

Tuesday--No real plans for the library, although I need to evaluate the storage upstairs since we're having a big fall cleanout. I work that afternoon at the store, I think.

Wednesday--Payday at the store. Try to pay my electric bill if I wasn't able to change arrangments.

Welcome to my life. It's not all that exciting, I know, so thanks for reading anyway.

PS Maybe I should enlist my upstairs neighbour's help in cleaning. They're vacuuming. They vaccuum nearly every day--and that's what I hear when I'm home, which is rare. They vaccuum in the morning; they vaccuum in the afternoon. OCD? Why, if I'm going to have OCD, can't I have the clean like mad type rather than the hoard everything type?

Alright, time to get ready for work. It's going to storm. I hope we don't lose power at work--we've done that once before during the truck unload, and it was no fun.


My house is a mess. I come home, throw things down, and either work on the computer or go to sleep. Today my mother called at 3:45 pm to say that they were bringing my car registration up (from what I assumed was Stanford), giving me about a 45 min window to run about madly picking stuff up. It still looked like a train wreck when they arrived 30 minutes later.

I so need to take care of the house, even if it's about an hour a day. I'm a slob, and even I'm not happy with it, and frankly, I'd prefer it to be nice and clean so I can do things like yoga. I'm such a hoarder, I have boxes in my living room floor and papers everywhere. I think it's time to go back to therapy for a host of reasons, this being one.


Moments of silence, time of remembrance

Seven years ago, at this moment, the first of two American Airlines planes hit the World Trade Centre.

8:45 am American Airlines Flight 11 out of Boston, Massachusetts, crashes into the north tower of the World Trade Centre.

9:03 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston, crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Centre.

9:43 a.m.: American Airlines Flight 77 crashes into the Pentagon.

10:10 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 93 crashes in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, southeast of Pittsburgh.

[Source: CNN's September 11: Chronology of Terror]

Four planes; about 3,000 lives, and more still killed in the wars spawned in the name of those attacks. Try to find some way to remember those who lost their lives that day, even if it's a small prayer or a moment of silence.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Today I got home before 8 pm, so I thought I'd 'upgrade' my page to Blogger's Layout version so that I can take advantage of the various gadgets they have now, including one of the latest, 'Following'. It means some changes for the blog format, but I've tried to work within what was available to keep some of the same colours and elements. It's a little more restrictive, but I'm slowly moving over the content you saw on the old page. The blogrolls/links will take the longest, but eventually I'll get it done, and it will give me a chance to go through and weed dead links. In the meantime if anything is missing that you absolutely loved or if you see a new gadget you hate, drop me a line at my Gmail account (or for YKWIA, this e-mail), or you can comment on this post. Thanks!

PS Please if you read this blog regularly, click on 'Follow this blog' to the left. It kind of works like Following on Twitter and gives me some idea of who's reading. You can follow anonymously, too.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Not that I believe the world is going to end

but since I do play in a science fiction/horror game where sinister sorts of scenarios happen and I'm reading Brian Lumley's The Source, in which an experiment opens up a 'grey hole', or portal to another planet, transmuting much of the surrounding matter into energy, let's just say this:

If the LHC kills us all tomorrow, it was nice knowing you.

Okay, I'm too sleepy to really write. I'll try to get up early tomorrow and blog some of the news stories I've been saving in my RSS reader.

Monday, September 08, 2008

So I got 3 1/2 hours sleep

But I did get the notes done, and we had a good game. Only 19 pages to go in the campaign. What could happen in 19 pages, right? Hey, that's longer than most Cthulhu adventures. Anything could happen. They're on the boat headed back to civilisation. Of course, my character died, so I mostly just took notes, but it was still fun.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Sorry I haven't posted

I've worked until 10 pm both yesterday and today and I'm trying to finish game notes. I'm as far as my character's sacrifice (well, not the death, but the volunteering), but there was a lot more that happened after that, so I'm not sure if I'll be able to get any rest tonight or not. They have to be done in order to play, and I have to be over at the house at 6 am tomorrow. So I'm not going to blog long, just wanted to leave a quick note as to what I'm up to.

I did take a bit of time out whilst having dinner to look up a photo I heard about of someone who once asked a friend to take her out to a field and shoot her if she ever weighed as much as me. By the look at it, not only has she surpassed what I weighed then, but she's quite a bit heftier than I. I know I'm morbidly obese, and probably shouldn't give in to schadenfreude, but it really hurt me for her to say such a thing at the time and I have to admit I find it interesting that she's gone ahead and eaten herself into that shape (or lack thereof). It's also interesting how a few years can change a person. She looks about my age, and she's nine years younger. I like to think of it as karma for how nasty she was on that and other occasions. :)

Thursday, September 04, 2008

I can't believe I just spent 3 hours

trying to get my new 4.0 GB SanDisk Cruzer Micro with U3 to work in my computer (I had no trouble getting it to work on another one, but it locked mine up and took away my icons, etc.) The culprit was a conflict between MusicMatch and the U3 software. I don't really use MusicMatch anymore, so I canned it. I've also been updating the U3 software and downloading utilities, as well as downloading and installing Service Pack 3 for Windows XP.

All this when I should be sleeping. I'm tired. I'm ready for bed, and hunching over the computer isn't helping my disposition. But everything works now with the disk (although I'm still in the middle of installing SP 3, so maybe I shouldn't jinx myself).

PS The flash drive was on sale for only $19.99. There was one that was 8.0 GB for only $29.99 ($40 off), but they were out of that one, of course. Although, having gone through a lot of trouble just to be able to access my data, maybe that's why they were so cheap. :)

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

A goat for YKWIA...but he comes with a buffalo :)


You know, I'm not sure if I've ever linked this before

but it's an issue of 'Cites & Insights' by Walt Crawford that looks at librarian blogs, and includes data on mine. It was published two years ago, in August 2006.

Some interesting tidbits:

Mine was the second oldest included, having started in October 2001. I was 4th in number of posts and 9th in overall length. Two years is a long time. This is post #4,449 and who knows how many words I'm up to.

Anyway, it was interesting, and if I've posted it before, forgive me--my memory is notoriously bad. It's just as well that I'm a librarian--I don't always know something, I just usually know where to look it up. :)

It was a good day

I slept until noon since I was off for the holiday and only got three and a half hours' sleep the night before. I checked the news and blogged, then took a nice bath and got back in bed to get toasty warm before finally getting up, getting my laundry together, and heading over to my friends' house to do it. I read four chapters of Lumley's The Source, book three of the Necroscope series. Fortunately they're short chapters. We're trying to catch up where I couldn't stay late due to how the buses ran.

It's so nice to drive again, to take 10 minutes to get home rather than an hour, and I managed to get the car back when gas was still low. :)

I didn't get a few things accomplished that I meant to do, like a couple hours of notes and getting my recyclables together and taking them to the bins behind Good Foods. I'll try to get the recyclables in sometime this week.

Tomorrow it's back to work at the hospital, and I'm working at the gas station 3-10 Tuesday, 6-9 Wednesday. I think I have enough time on the latter to go with a friend to do an errand, buy said friend's birthday present (a little late), and pick up a flash drive I saw advertised at Office Max, 4 GB storage for $19.99. I've been pushing the flash drives I have to the limit (they're only 512 MB).

Speaking of birthday presents, this is what YKWIA got me for my birthday (also belated; he gave me mine on his):

Where the Deep Ones Are, by Kenneth Hite and illustrated by Andy Hopp. It's a Lovecraftian take on Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak.

Thank You Thank You Thank You! I love it!

I want this T-shirt

I survived the total devastation of mankind and all I got was this lousy T-Shirt
From Brand at Calls for Cthulhu. You can buy the shirt, in various colours, sizes, and styles, at this link.

Thanks to YKWIA for finding it. Be sure to check out the Calls for Cthulhu programme, too, at http://www.callsforcthulhu.com. Several episodes are also on YouTube.

Some news stories I've been reading

Reading: Necroscope III: The Source by Brian Lumley; Death Masks by Jim Butcher

Kids with older dads at higher bipolar risk

Missing Toddler Caylee Anthony Likely Dead, Florida Police Say

Study Links Gene Variant in Men to Marital Discord

India's 'untouchables' last to be helped in floods: Dalits are hit hardest in flooded region, but are lowest on caste ladder

ISS Dodges Space Junk For First Time In Five Years

Emergency in Thailand as protests turn deadly: 200,000 may strike Wednesday in support of anti-government protesters

Monday, September 01, 2008

A deadly English mystery

Third body found at millionaire's mansion

Fire broke out at Osbaston House in Shropshire on Tuesday with such force that it wasn't until Friday that investigators found the wife shot to death, the husband's .22 nearby. The body of a man has also been found, and a third body, but they have not be indentified. Formally the husband and the couple's 15-year-old daughter are considered missing, but it is possible that the bodies belong to them. Prior to the arson, all the horses and dogs were shot. Murder-suicide is my intuition, mainly because of the animals, but of course they have to rule out some sort of home invasion or that sort of thing as well; the family were well-off and someone could have attacked them for money or some other motive. They'll know more once those other bodies have been identified.


Sounds to me like a classic case of borderline personality at work, but that's just my opinion...

One heart, one widow connect suicides of 2 men

Reaction set in this morning

I don't want to make it seem like I'm too enmeshed in my character; I'm not. But when you roleplay to the extent we do, you really do put part of yourself into the character--we're not hack and slash sort of players, where you get treasure and kill monsters and that's about the end of it. Our characters have lives, sometimes rather messy ones, with ties to other characters and beyond.

I was on my way to pick someone up from work this morning and just with as real death, I found myself thinking of things unsaid, undone, and I cried a little. My character was pretty quiet, with a bit of a sense of humour, and wasn't the brightest or best, certainly. He was talented in photography, and in martial arts. Also, he was the best tracker and navigator in the Antarctic group, having survived cannibal cultists in the Amazon as his first Cthulhoid experience. He hadn't had a lot of play and had just one mission to his name, involving the Mi-Go.

Because I do so much writing during note-taking, I sometimes have trouble interacting and roleplaying, although the recorder is helping that. (It's the only real record I have of his sacrifice--I wasn't taking notes at that point.) He could have been fleshed out better by now. But now he's gone, in a horrible but somewhat noble death, and the record of his life is over, and there's no second chances, at least with this character. Maybe if I'm allowed a new one at some point, I can work more dilligently on bringing that one to life, or more importantly, develop the ones I already have. So I guess his death has some unseen consequences for me as a player as well as for those in the game. I have to learn to be less passive, more active, and really roleplay to my fullest. I've been doing this long enough that I should be able to.

But for the record, even though it's not real, here's a little closure:

Joshua Daniel Adler
Born February 7, 1980 Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Died December 7, 2006 Western Mountain Range, Antarctica

He had dark brown hair, blue eyes, and was lanky, about 5'10" and 150 lbs. He looked very much like Adrian Grenier (see picture by David Shankbone). He had O+ blood. He was Jewish, somewhat religious, and kept kosher when he could. His father is Evan Adler, a professor at Hebrew Union College. His mother is Miriam Adler, a librarian, and his sister is Rachel Adler, an elementary school teacher. Nice, normal folks, who've never heard of Cthulhu. They've never come into play, although they may now that he's dead. How do you tell someone your son died to save the world? [SPOILER ALERT FOR Beyond the Mountains of Madness!] More likely they'll say he died in the terrible earthquake that hit the mountains, along with the other men who died during the trip. There isn't a body to bring home; his head and brain is incorporated into the Elder Things' machine, his body--skeleton, really, since shoggoths are very efficient--lies in an abattoir within the lighthouse.

Goodbye Josh.