Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Just in case your Galaxy S3 starts talking to you randomly...

No, you're not hallucinating. Apparently the S3 (and I'm presuming the S4) has a driving mode that if you accidentally hit on the pull-down screen, the phone will suddenly start telling you, 'message from...' 'call from...' and give you the name. Which is actually quite helpful, but freaked me out a bit when it happened, since I didn't know about that feature. I was trying to use the phone earlier in bright sunlight, which usually is okay with this phone, but I was having some trouble, and I must have accidentally toggled it. Fortunately I Googled the problem and found the answer immediately. [I find it funny that it could manage one friend's 'normal' name, but not another's which is a little unusual. So it just spelled that one. :)] Also, the voice was female, so I guess if I ever decide to 'name' my phone (does anyone do that, like they do cars?), it'll have to be a female name, although I suppose there may be a way to change the setting to male.

I think my list was a bit ambitious. I did get a lot done, but not as much as I'd have liked to. I have moved the literary books out to the living area. Now I'm sitting at the computer in my underwear and a camisole extremely hot and sweaty, and I'm thinking of just going ahead and taking a shower and resting a bit before going on to the next phase of things. And the switch out of shelves for the fantasy and mystery books may have to wait till tomorrow. I don't think I can lift any more books. I will try to get the clothes into bags to take to Goodwill, though. I can drop them by tomorrow. And if I can get the bedding put away, then most of the bedroom floor will be clear. That leaves Wednesday and Thursday evening, and then Friday and Saturday to get the closets all taken care. I think I can do it. On Friday I'm off as well, and I'm taking a friend to Nicholasville on a hunt for coffee mugs, since apparently you can't just go into a regular store and find them any more. There's Carpenter's Dish Barn in Nicholasville, but they close at 6 pm. Who knew it would be this difficult to find just plain coffee mugs, not part of some sort of set or strange shapes? Okay, time for that break.

I'm off today!

And although I didn't sleep in much (I sat down at my desk at home about the same time I would have at work, but in my jammies), it's still nice to know I have a break. Mind you, I'm still cleaning the house, so that will take up part of my day. But that's okay.

Yesterday, work was fairly busy and I had a couple of interlibrary loans to request, a book order, some stuff for referrals, and a teleconference with other state representatives to the Greater Midwest Region of the National Network or Libraries of Medicine. The last was quite enjoyable, given I missed our annual meeting in Chicago last year due to injury, and there was a new member who was quite bubbly and vocal. I also had a doctor's appointment, then took a friend to mail some items and we went out to Long John Silver's. When I came home, I had all intents and purposes to clean, but laid down for about an hour, without really falling asleep, because weariness kind of overtook me for a bit. But I got up and then tackled the bedroom, taking boxes to be sorted out of the closet, gong through my clothes (putting them in the following categories: those winter ones to be put away for the season, those current ones to be put away (which I did), clothes to go to Goodwill, clothes that are too damaged to do so and just need to be thrown away (I have one sleep shirt that is very comfortable but riddled with holes from being caught in the washer), and clothes to be laundered, which are in a hamper by darks, lights, and hand-washables. I also sorted out bedding to be put away, towels, and resuable bags, of which I have many. There are also a series of wire carts that collapse that are useful but would do better in the walk-in closet, as there is now room in there due to the dead electronics graveyard's cleanout and they can't be damaged should the air conditioner leak (something that's happened twice in the time I've been here--which is why clothes and books do not go in there, just to be safe. I lost some clothes at one point due to this.)
    Today's agenda (which may bleed into tomorrow, if needed, in some cases):
  1. Take out the some things I found last night that are garbage (like the plastic from my bedsprings I was supposed to keep 14 days but wound up being a month and a half).
  2. Bag up the clothes for Goodwill and load them in the car.
  3. Buy a new swimsuit.
  4. Check for a book at Half Price Books.
  5. Go by Kroger and get cleaning supplies and four more bookshelves (I think I can squeeze them in).
  6. Go by the bank and get quarters for laundry.
  7. Fold up all the bedding to be put away.
  8. Collect up the reusable bags.
  9. Take a friend to a doctor's appointment.
  10. Drop both clothes and reusable bags by Goodwill.
  11. Put away bedding and other folded items.
  12. Clean the bathtub.
  13. Put together the bookshelves.
  14. Move literary books from closet to living area.
  15. Move fantasy and mystery books to bed.
  16. Move metal bookshelf to closet so they're both there.
  17. Move fantasy and mystery books to new bookshelves in bedroom.
  18. Use metal bookshelves for any remainder books, Magic cards, collectibles, etc., so they're not on the floor.
  19. Move the comic boxes to that closet [actually, scratch that, I can't pick them up at present. I need someone to help me with that.]
  20. Do laundry.
That's enough, I think. :) It's a full day, but if I can accomplish everything, I'll be very happy (and probably in pain). Okay, I'm finished with breakfast, so I should probably go take a shower and start hopping!

Monday, April 29, 2013

By the way

I managed, despite my injury in October that kept me homebound with limited mobility for three months, to overwinter a pepper plant that Brenda had given me last year. It's putting out new leaves and blooming. It makes small purple bell peppers. So since spring does apparently plan on sticking around and the lows aren't supposed to go below 50 for a few days, I put it outside so that it would pollinate. Wish me luck!

I'm tired, but I can't sleep

So I've been putting the final touches on the living area and dining area (I hesitate to call them rooms, as they're all open). I moved a shelf with movies on it, moved some sturdy crates, got some books off the floor, and got extraneous stuff off the shelves. I still need to organise the audio tapes, as well as one shelf on the entertainment centre. I set the clock ahead on the DVD/VHS recorder (missed that when we went to daylight savings). So that leaves the bedroom and the apartment's closets, and there's a toss-up as to which closet is worse. But I have accomplished a lot so far; I hope to finish in time for the game next week. I'm off Tuesday and Friday, so that should help.

Okay, I'm going to try to go back to bed. Good night!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

I'm kind of tired of cleaning for the day

and I'm hurting all over. I did my normal Sunday chores and then went through four boxes of papers, winnowing out what could be recycled, what should be shredded, and keeping the important ones. I've also gone through all the little bric-à-brac, odd stuff, and random things I had in the living room on the bookshelves that were not books. I should start taking clothes out of drawers and going through them so I can give away the ones I'm not using and have room for the others I do. But I took a break to eat and I'm finding that I'm petering out for the day. I'm glad I didn't start to launder a comforter, as it is now pouring outside and we have a small thunderstorm going on (the laundry room is across the parking lot at my complex). Fortunately I have a couple of days off this week and that should help me finish. But even though it's only 7 pm I think I have to stop, at least for awhile, take some medicine where I'm hurting, and maybe crawl into bed for a bit of a nap.


Fatal stabbing of girl, 8, prompts California manhunt
Residents of a rural Northern California county were being told Sunday to keep their doors locked and report anyone considered suspicious as authorities continued the search for the killer of an 8-year-old girl.

Calaveras County deputies and law enforcement officials from nearby agencies were looking for a suspect after Leila Fowler was found stabbed in her Valley Springs home around noon Saturday.

The girl was found by her brother — reported by local media to be 12-years-old — after he encountered a male intruder in the home. When the intruder ran away, the boy found his sister stabbed. She was pronounced dead at a local hospital, officials said.

I can relate

Although I've never been hospitalised for my illness, and I'm very lucky to have found the right combination of medications after years of collecting diagnoses before a psychiatric nurse practitioner took one look at them and said the magic phrase 'Bipolar Disorder II' in response to everything I was telling her, my illness has impacted my life for worse and for I suppose in some small ways for better, too. So it was interesting to read another person's experience with treatment, particularly in trying to maintain or recover a sense of 'self' that has been lost. If you or anyone you love has bipolar disorder, you should read this. It's a fair description of it from the inside.

The Problem With How We Treat Bipolar Disorder by Linda Logan
The last time I saw my old self, I was 27 years old and living in Boston. I was doing well in graduate school, had a tight circle of friends and was a prolific creative writer. Married to my high-school sweetheart, I had just had my first child. Back then, my best times were twirling my baby girl under the gloaming sky on a Florida beach and flopping on the bed with my husband — feet propped against the wall — and talking. The future seemed wide open.

I don’t think there is a particular point at which I can say I became depressed. My illness was insidious, gradual and inexorable.

I hit a wall, after a very productive day

On Saturday I:
  1. Bought three bookshelves and cleaning supplies.
  2. Brought the electronics that I've had in the walk-in closet for so long out to the living room next to the CRTs.
  3. Worked on the living/dining area.
  4. Picked up A and took him to have his hair cut.
  5. Brought him to my house and we loaded the car to the max.
  6. Took the electronics to the proper recycling centre; boy they were efficient in unloading the car! I had to promise that I was a resident of Fayette County, show my ID, and that I wasn't a business The only thing they missed was an old phone. But I've found some small things that need to go that I can take later in the week.
  7. Took A to the pharmacy.
  8. Was treated by A to lunch. We went to Chipotle, which neither of us had been to. It was okay, about like Qdoba but louder, and I didn't see queso on the menu. But the veggie burrito was good, and the hot sauce was hot, but a little thin; I kept getting it on my shirt.
  9. Took A by a store to get a paper.
  10. Took him home.
  11. Rested for about forty-five minutes.
  12. Worked on the living/dining area to the point where it is almost finished. There are just a few things left.
  13. At three, called to say that I would not be finishing my tasks in time (long story, let's just say I was supposed to finish the house by Saturday night, due to some stupid words that had accountability and responsibility attached to them).
  14. Continued to work, turning to the bedroom. Put together two shelves that stack on one another (the other had been set up in the living room). That brings the total to four shelves of that type which I can configure separately or together.
  15. Set the DVR to record 'Doctor Who'.
  16. Put stuff that was in front of the closet on the bed; unloaded books from the closet to the new shelves. Became terribly disillusioned to realise that in truth, I needed another two shelves to get all the books that were on the closet floor onto shelves, and nowhere (except the closet itself) to put them. I'm already breaking rules of using space. The one is impinging on my computer space, and the two in the bedroom are partly in front of a painting.
  17. Felt overwelmed by it all and curled up in a ball in a small space available on the bed for a few minutes.
  18. YKWIA called and we talked for awhile. I won't be playing in the game tomorrow, so I can work on the bedroom. It's going to take more than one day to go through those closets. Fortunately I have a couple of days off next week, so hopefully I can get everything finished (plus the game notes) by next Saturday.
  19. By this point I was in so much pain I could barely move. It's not just my SI joint/back. It was my shoulder, knees, back, feet--you name it. So I basically cleared off the bed and just dumped things into the floor, and then went ahead and took my nightly meds, which include an anti-inflammatory (naproxen), a muscle relaxer, a medicine for nerve pain, and pain medicine (plus Pepcid to counteract stomach issues from most of them). I usually just take a half-tablet of the pain medicine, because it's a type that has made me itch and loopy in the past (I actually have it listed on my allergy list, and they gave it to me anyway). I decided screw that, I'd rather itch than be in pain, so I did take a whole pill. Then I tried to get comfortable and laid down. That was five hours ago. The only part of me that's hurting at all right now is the SI joint. Not too bad. I wouldn't want to rely too heavily on the medication, and I only take it during the night, when I'm not going to be driving, meaning days have been a bit painful, although I've discovered that if I don't overdo it I can supplement the naproxen with a little acetaminophen while at work and that helps tremendously. And the PT is going well. I'm really trying to get things done without overdoing it; I lifted very little of what went in the car today, for example. I did load the shelves (25 lbs each) into the cart at the store and from the cart to trunk, but A brought all three out and into the apartment. He lifted several very heavy things, like CRT monitors and three computer towers plus old vacuum cleaners. I'd been saving stuff for awhile, until I could get to the centre. Thank you, A, for all your help!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Still digging through things

I found the dining room table under a bunch of stuff. I cleaned out the remaining drawer of the kitchen island. I have recyclables to go out and have almost filled up another trash bag. But there is so much left to do. The plan is to rest for a bit and then resume, working until late. I have to get a friend at 9:30 tomorrow morning and we're going to do errands and then he's going to help me get some things to the electronics recycling centre here in Lexington, things I can't carry on my own like the two cathode ray tube monitors sitting in the middle of my living room floor at the moment. I don't think I'm going to make the deadline, especially given the closets, etc. But it's good to get what I have managed to do accomplished.

I am the only person I know

who can break a nail whilst taking out my contact lenses. Yes, really. Ouch.

This is rather cool

3D sonograms let blind expectant parents "see" their babies

Thanks to Bill Hart for the link. Okay, dinner over. Time to clean.

Oh, to celebrate the de-hoarding, I'll share something YKWIA told me about

No, my house isn't THAT bad. But it has been before. I really do have to be careful, and it's very hard for me to get rid of things. But I do have to work on it.

Up a little early

I'd actually shot for 6 am to get a little cleaning done, but managed to wake up a little before seven, so I have about a half an hour or so before I'm normally up. I took the two pairs of crutches I'm donating to the hospital (I certainly can't use them, even when I'm hurt, as I have no upper body strength) to the car. I also took the magazines I'm going to donate to the Marines (there's a box in the mailroom at work for donations) out as well. I think I may stop by Office Depot on the way to work this morning and get some laminating sheets for my pool exercises that the physical therapist typed out for me. That way I can take it to the pool. I may not make it there this weekend, but I hope to start next week, plus maybe walk for a few minutes there, all with the okay of the therapist. I don't think I should do any weight-lifting as of yet.

Well, Office Depot opens at 8 am, and I have to be at work shortly after, so I should go get ready. Have a great day, and T.G.I.F.!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Must take break

Actually, I may just have to give up for the night. I've excavated a lot, gotten a small bookshelf in place with DVDs, gone through magazines to donate to the Marines, etc. I have half a bag of recyclables (mostly mail or notices from the apartment complex I no longer need) and another half a bag of things to throw away, like an old umbrella that doesn't really do well anymore, that sort of thing. I found an excellent cubby hole for my yoga mat, strap, block, and my physical therapy bands. Now I'm enjoying a cold drink and thinking about going into the bedroom and relaxing for awhile, although I'm afraid I'll just fall asleep. But I can work on it again tomorrow, as well as the dining area table, and do the bathroom, and try to tackle the bedroom and closets Saturday. Maybe. That's what I'll attempt anyway. I feel better when I do spring cleaning and de-hoarding, but at the same time, it's a lot of work.

Just finished physical therapy

and I'm feeling pretty well. Now to get something to eat and tackle the house yet again. I've opened up the windows (it finally got warm enough) and I think I'll play some peppy music. I'm glad it's almost Friday. It looks like we'll be a little slower next week (this week has been crazy at work), so I may take a day or two off. That would be really nice.

Okay, I've got to get going.

Tomorrow is another day

Got most everything taken out, except for one bag of stuff that wasn't in the fridge, so it'll be okay till morning. So tired, and with little to show for it. I think this whole 'clean in five days' thing is going to not work so well. But I'll chug along and see what I can do. It is improving, just more slowly than I'd like. Hope your week is going well. I am so glad we're over the week's hump and are heading towards the weekend. I, for one, am going on to bed. Good night.


High School Fires Teacher After Her Partner's Name Appeared In Her Mother's Obituary

The diocese says Carla Hale wasn't fired because she is gay, but rather because her partner's name appeared in the obituary under the convention of showing a spousal relationship, which is against church teachings. Go figure. So not only has she recently lost her mother, she is being punished for loving someone who happens to be female and including her in the memorial. As her attorney put it, 'It's like not being fired for being a woman but being fired because you're pregnant.' 19 years of service to teaching was ended because of small-minds. Looks like a few people need a broader education.

My thanks to George Takei for bringing this to my attention. I do so hope she wins her appeal of the grievance.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Well, I'm getting a workout

Beyond working on the kitchen, I just spent an hour and a half at the grocery, replenishing my cabinets and refrigerator. I also got a small bookshelf that folds away that is the perfect size for some DVD collections I have that I had no room for. Only problem is while bringing in six reusable bags and the bookshelf didn't hurt too badly, bending over to put things in the fridge was very painful, so now I'm taking a break. I'm sweaty, tired, and hurting, and I still have to take the trash out tonight because it has spoiled food in it. The numbness in my arm made me drop something like four things as I put them away, fortunately not steel cans, but let's just say I'm not going to open that bottle of Diet Coke yet. I'm still not as far as I'd like in the cleaning process. I may stay up late tonight doing some more. I'm seriously thinking of asking off for Friday, but I have two appointments to go to on Monday and Tuesday and I don't want to get behind. But for now, I'm pooped and I have got to stop for a bit.

Got to take a break

I've been working on the kitchen, and I'm about halfway through. I've gone through all the cabinets, gotten rid of things that are very old and expired, and cleaned out the refrigerator, among other things. But the former meant standing on a folding chair to reach the top shelf, and that's not a great thing to do when you're six months out from a broken ankle and nearly 300 lbs. :) I managed not to fall; it just hurts when I do that. I filled up two trash bags of stuff, some of which moved with me with from the old apartment nine years ago. Yes, really. The next step is to wash the hand-wash dishes, wipe down the counters and sink, put some baking materials back in the oven (sadly, my kitchen is so small I have to keep them there, and then unload them when I want to bake. Even my microwave is actually in my dining area and not the kitchen. I do have a butcher-block style 'kitchen island', but it is against the wall and the leaf that expands it is on the wall side, with a drawer on the open side and two shelves below, the latter of which is full of cookbooks and cooking pots. One day, maybe, I'll have some proper cabinets, but since I don't cook much, it works for now. I am hoping to cook more often now that YKWIA is teaching me, though. Okay, I'm going to prop my ankle up and maybe ice it for a few minutes before tackling the rest of the kitchen. Then I'll try to move on to the living area, which was the planned area for tonight.

So last night was a bust as far as cleaning went

My half-hour of rest turned into falling asleep for the night. That shouldn't be a surprise, of course. So tonight the plan is to clean the kitchen and then hit the living room/dining area. I have fortified myself with Captain D's (grilled tilapia, rice, fried okra, broccoli, and a breadstick), taken my insulin, and hopefully will not flake out on the apartment tonight. This despite the fact that I have been in a lot of pain with my back all day, shooting down my leg, while my left arm has been numb thanks to issues with my neck. I took some Tylenol earlier and that helped, but even so, it was a rough day. So the trick will be to do housework without overdoing it, if you know what I mean.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Just got home from physical therapy

which I had been dreading, as my back wasn't it's best today, with pain running all the way down my leg, but I feel much better as a result of going. I am a bit tired from doing laundry very late (1-3 am last night), where I'd fallen asleep early in the evening, got up and was productive, then went back to bed, but didn't sleep so well. I've dragged a little all day. But I have a few things on my agenda tonight. I want to pot up some African violets (there are three in a pot, and they really need their own individual ones, so I stopped by Home Depot and got some violet pots (the type that self water from the bottom). I also plan to work on the kitchen. But first I'm getting a bite to eat and maybe take a half hour to just chill.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Moving a little slowly today

I was having some pain beyond the usual last night with my back and leg so I took my normal nightly meds but took a whole pain medicine tablet rather than a half (I'm only taking that at night so it doesn't affect my work or driving) and I'm a little groggy this morning. I've done some of my PT stretches to try to limber up the muscles that are so tight (it's worse in the morning, and gets better as I get up and move--to a point, as long as I don't overdo it). I also didn't want to get up because I sleep under a fan, but I didn't put the heat on last night and when I woke up just now it had only made it up to 43 degrees. I only have a couple of things planned for today, and there's no timetable per se, but I did plan to get up earlier. Now I've eaten some fake turkey patties (they were okay, not as good as the burgers by the same company) and am thinking of getting a shower. But I'm still moving awfully slowly.

Friday, April 19, 2013

YKWIA showed this to me, and I teared up a bit

Okay, I cried. Not sobbed, but it was very touching.

I do miss the Ponds.

Very glad tonight

  1. That the surviving Boston Marathon bombing suspect is now in custody, is receiving medical care, and will hopefully be able to provide a clearer motive and also be brought to justice, Way to go, folks in Boston. To paraphrase something I saw on Facebook, if you mess with Boston, they will shut the whole town down until they find you. Don't mess with Boston.
  2. That it is Friday. It's been a long week. In some ways it's flown by, but in others, it's dragged along. I am home safe, despite a close call in the parking lot of a Shell station with a big pickup as I was backing up. I am very tired, but trying not to crash. No game Sunday, so technically I can ditch the notes for another couple of days, but still. I feel like I come home and play on the computer for a bit, and then I'm gone by anywhere from 8-10 pm. At least I have actually been reading rather than just going to bed and falling asleep immediately. :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Very tired

Today was very nice because a friend and his son came to eat lunch with me at work, and we had a good time. After work, I went to physical therapy, where I exercised my butt off and, while I feel much better in terms of the pain, I am kind of tired. We're expecting strong, possibly severe storms overnight, with temperatures plummeting to the 50s for tomorrow. So my plan is to take a nap, charge everything this evening before they arrive so they're not plugged in during the storms, and then get up and do something fun, like watch a DVD or read for awhile. One thing I've learned from that book that I was talking about is that the midday meal was called luncheon for those Edwardian well-to-do families, but the servants' meal was called dinner. I thought that was interesting. The book is interesting and is organised in such a way that the hierarchy of status amongst servants is presented, along with wages and duties. There's even a flow chart at one point. I'm considering going ahead and purchasing it. I'll reserve judgement until I get to the end. Some of the reviewers make valid points, but at the same time, I like the way the book is laid out and the writing is not bad. It's turning out to be a fairly quick read, as I haven't had a lot of time to do so, but I'm already about a third of the way through.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

This was on the tape, too...

I have the movie on VHS. Bruce Dern plays a character who tries to save the last of Earth's forests, which have been consigned to giant domes in space. I did always like the song, too. Here's Netflix' description of the film:
In a ruined future in which huge, orbiting spaceships preserve the last remaining trees from pollution and overcrowding on Earth, everyman botanist Freeman Lowell (Bruce Dern) receives an order to destroy the trees. He refuses, but his actions set him up against his superiors and fellow crew members. Special-effects titan Douglas Trumbull directs this cult-status gem known for its innovative effects and powerful social themes.
It has three of the cutest robots in all of science fiction, Huey, Dewey, and Louie, and some very scary twists as Lowell's actions have terrible consequences personally. If you've never seen it, I'd recommend it. It's available through the DVD plan on Netflix, or available from Amazon for $10.71, or $2.99 to rent on Amazon Instant Video (if you buy the DVD, you get a free promotional rental that will expire 24 hours after you watch it, but you have 30 days to do so, so you can watch it instantly).

Listening to

'John Riley' by Joan Baez

Several years ago I was partly laid off and as a result, was evicted from my apartment at the time.  During that stressful time, I abandoned my record collection, justifying it because I did not have any way to listen to the vinyl at the time. These included albums of my parents from the 1960s and my own coming of age in the 80s. YKWIA advised me against it, but I ignored very good advice, and if course came to regret it.

So it made me happy to find an audio tape I'd made of Joan Baez' Ballad Book album, one of the lost ones. Not too long ago I bought a CD boom box that still of all things had a tape player, because I wanted to listen to my old tapes. It also had an auxiliary so I can plug in my phone. So I get the best of both worlds.

I was very fortunate to see Baez in concert a couple of years ago, with great third row seats, and I enjoyed every bit of the show. But it's nice to have this as well.  It's nice as an accompaniment to reading as well.


Life Below Stairs: True Lives of Edwardian Servants by Alison Maloney. What can I say, it's a library book I have on my Kindle that piqued my interest because of my watching 'Downton Abbey'. :) It didn't get great reviews on Amazon, mainly because it has supposedly drawn largely on secondary sources rather than original research, but it is interesting so far and lays out the hierarchy of house servants and their domains very well. It has gotten me interested in a book that is older but does contain a lot of original work, Frank Dawes' Not in Front of the Servants: A True Portrait of English Upstairs/Downstairs Life, which is available on Abebooks.com at several sellers for a reasonable price. Keep in mind, although my focus of study in history was European history prior to 1789, it was also especially in social history, so I find this an interesting subject.

I am beginning to appreciate Canadian humour more fully

My first introduction to Canadian humour really was the sketch series 'The Kids in the Hall' that aired on Comedy Central years ago. It was funny, odd, and surreal at times. Now YKWIA and I have been watching a comedic horror series called 'Todd and the Book of Pure Evil', which is somewhat like the American show 'Reaper' but just so wrong. Todd is a stoner who encounters a book that makes people's desires come horribly true. His sidekick is Curtis, a guy with a prosthetic arm who seems to have a thinly-veiled crush on Todd. Together with Jenny (who oozes attitude) and Hannah (the brains), they fight evil with mixed results. The whole town (Crowley) is full of Satanists who want the book, and there is a prophecy out there about the Pure Evil One, who might be Todd, or might be someone else. A cabal of Satanists direct the guidance counselor to get the book, and the counselor is convinced he is the Pure Evil One. Almost every person who uses the book dies horribly, consumed by their own desire. A fat girl might wish to be thin and then her shed fat engorges other girls. A gay guy wants the whole school to understand what it's like, and when all the guys turn gay, he winds up the straight one, still the outsider and bullied. An ueber-eco-queen squelches technology and the students revert to cavemen, with her turning into a giant tree goddess, until she is stopped. There are two seasons. It is being streamed on Netflix, and I think it's also being shown on Fearnet here in the States. You might want to check it out. It's not what I'd call absolutely brilliant, but it is pretty damn funny.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

I've been up for 19 hours

But I'm doing pretty well. A storm has come up; it's raining hard and lightning and thundering. So I'm avoiding charging anything like I usually do overnight. Granted, my phone and tablet are insured and I do use a surge protector, but I figure I can wait up a little more. Besides, it gives me a chance to read some. I've been doing tech stuff all evening, and I need a break.

My back did much better today. I went to PT and we did stretches I can easily do at home. My therapist is going to write up a programme for water exercises that I can laminate and then use in the pool at the YMCA. Work went better, and then I had an appointment. It was very hard to come back to work after being out in 78 degree weather, but I did. Then I stopped by my friends' house briefly to drop off something from the grocery and came on home. The fish was a success, I had a treat of frozen Greek yoghurt, and then I worked on organising things on electronic devices, etc. I meant to take some recyclables out. I may do that in the morning, assuming it's not raining.

Well, it seems the storm is dying down, I think. I'll check the weather, plug things up, read for a bit perhaps, and then turn in for the night. Hope the weather doesn't get too wild.

So I've got the windows open

and I'm running the dishwasher and cooking some fish. YKWIA would probably be appalled, but it's like fish with training wheels for people who don't really cook. It comes in a bag, fresh, with real butter, lemon, and spices already in. You poke holes in the bag and then bake the fish for a certain amount of time (varying by weight) at 380 degrees. I had some tilapia this weekend some lady was fixing as samples (you know how they set up in the grocery). Usually that area has meat samples, which of course I pass on, but I do like tilapia. It was very good. This is cod. I also got some tilapia for tomorrow. It's fresh fish so you have to cook it within a day or so. But I'm hoping it will be yummy.

PS Oh, my goodness, that fish was excellent. Absolutely wonderful, and so easy. I cooked it in the bag for 28 minutes and then just opened it up and ate every bit of it. I will have to get this more often. It only cost $6.50 for just under a pound of cod; I think the tilapia was $5.15 a pound. And yes, I ate every bit, even though that was a large portion, with just a little sourdough bread to complete the meal. The lady who was doing the samples the other day said the weight is the fish only, so essentially the seasoning is free. Mmmmm.

I pretty much crashed last night

But I got up at 4 am and I've been steadily working on the house (or at least doing what I can without too much bending or anything that would hurt my back), the thing I never got to on Saturday. Now it's nearly 5:30 and the birds are singing outside. I start back at physical therapy at 7:30 this morning. I have to drop a library book by the library as I go, and then after PT there's work and an appointment this afternoon.

My back is to the point where I'm out of bed and off the cane, but some days are better and some days worse. Yesterday my stomach was really upset despite the Pepcid they gave me with the naproxen. Also, I'd eaten a lot of raw veggies at the game on Sunday. So the combination of factors plus back pain made me extremely uncomfortable most of the day. The naproxen, of course, is meant to bring down the inflammation, although it is also a pain reliever. I'm also taking a half a tablet of pain medicine and a muscle relaxer--but only at night. I didn't want to drive with the pain medicine in my system. So much of the day I'm still experiencing pain, and I can't take any other pain relievers that I know of safely with the naproxen to boost it. It's possible you can acetaminophen, as it's not an NSAID (and it's in the pain meds), but I don't know about it enough to risk it. So I'll just carry on as I have. It does take much of the pain away, to the point where I can (mostly) function. I will admit that between the back and stomach yesterday, although I was at work, I was not my most productive. I got the essential things done, but not much else. It was hard to focus. I'm hoping PT will improve things so that I'll be a bit more lively and engaged. It was all I could do to keep conversations going yesterday. :) I hope to do better today.

PS Thank you YKWIA for the fennel seeds. They really helped my stomach last night.

Monday, April 15, 2013


Deadly bombs rock Boston marathon
Two bombs exploded near the crowded finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday, killing two people and injuring dozens others in a terrifying scene of broken glass, smoke and severed limbs, authorities said.
Police found and defused at least one other explosive device. Law enforcement sources tell CBS News correspondent Bob Orr that authorities found one other device that is intact and has not been detonated.

2 killed, more than 130 hurt in Boston Marathon bombing
  • Two killed – including 8-year-old boy – in bomb blasts near finish line of Boston Marathon, Boston police say.
  • Area hospitals say at least 132 are injured, including eight children.
  • Two explosions happened at about 2:50 p.m., more than two hours after the first of the race's nearly 27,000 runners had crossed the finish line.
  • Boston.com journalist reports "blood everywhere," people missing limbs.
  • Race called off; Red Cross and Google set up websites to help people find loved ones in the area
Thinking of all the folks in Boston today and the victims and their families. Please let there be justice for this horrible act.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Well, I never took a nap

but 'Doctor Who' was quite fun, especially tonight's episode, 'Cold War', which is set in a sunken Soviet submarine in 1983. I could never make it in a submarine. That much crushing depth of water above, plus small spaces, makes me a tad nervous (I have a similar problem in aeroplanes if I think about it too much, only of course it's so far down to the surface, and flying over water especially makes me nervous). Add in leaking water, running out of air, and ice warriors from Mars, and it gets to be downright heart-pounding. Anyway, I enjoyed it. I am terribly embarrassed that while the professor who loved Ultravox seemed certainly very familiar, I did not recognise him as David Warner until I looked it up. The earlier programme, 'The Rings of Akhaten' was very visually stunning, and well done, too. Jenna-Louise Coleman is growing on me as Clara/Oswin. There are times I think Matt Smith is acting well, a bit over the top, but the thing is, the Doctor and his companions are always on a rather wild run, so yes, it is appropriate. I do rather like Smith as the Doctor. I do hope rumours that he may be leaving after the Christmas special this year are just that.

So I'm home now, and the notes are finished, so I may actually go read and do something enjoyable for the rest of the evening. I'm tempted to go skywatching, as the moon is a sliver and there are several planets and bright stars visible despite the city lights, but my back is still an issue so I think I'm just going to get into something comfy and put some music on instead. I hope you have a good night.


I finished the game notes and they are in a folder on Dropbox so I can access them remotely on my phone or tablet. I finished evaluating the resources for that project I was doing. I filed my taxes. I am now very tired. I am going over to my friends' house about 6:30 and we're going to watch 'Doctor Who', both last week's and this one. But I feel much better. Still need to work on the house, but I may take a brief nap.

So far today

I have:
  1. Woken up and gotten ready
  2. Gone to the library and picked up not only a hold but a few more books
  3. Texted with a friend
  4. Taken a friend to the vet
  5. Taken a friend to get a newspaper (and he got me brunch of Lean Pockets and bananas :) )
  6. Spent some time watching 'The Cosby Show' with friends
  7. Eaten two Lean Pocket pretzel-bread spinach and three cheese pockets and a banana
  8. Tried to catch a beautiful black long-haired dog that was running loose on my friends' street, without success, unfortunately
  9. Come home to my disaster-struck-looking house with the following to do:
    • Game notes (for tomorrow_
    • Taxes (due Monday)
    • A project where I'm evaluating books for a company (due tomorrow)
    • Housework (must be done to preserve sanity)
Then there's 'Doctor Who' and maybe 'Orphan Black' to watch later today. Whew!

I found the secret

to waking up relatively pain free these days: I set my alarm for an hour before I intended to get up and then took my anti-inflammatory medication. Then by the time I got up to shower and do all the things that have been difficult the last few days, I'm doing better. I think I'm on the mend, although I start PT Tuesday. And I am determined to hit the YMCA with some sort of workout, even if it's in the water, next week, if my therapist approves. I've had some amount of chronic back pain most of my adult life, but nothing ever like this. For those of you who deal with this daily, my heart goes out to you.

PS At least I'm prepared to do some of my PT exercises at home. On Wednesday, the day I missed work, (the first time I've done that for any sort of back issue), I got a package there from Amazon for a balance ball. I wanted to continue to work on some exercises I'd been given for my ankle. It's 65 cm and it rated to 2,000 lbs when inflated correctly, so I think I'm good for using it. :) [I also got some yoga supplies, but that's on hold]. So I've blown up the ball and am looking forward to using it, but I'm going to wait till I talk to the therapist and get some exercises from him. By the way I love my therapist. I'm going to KORT Physical Therapy Chevy Chase, with Stephen Karam. He did such a good job with my ankle I asked to return there. I highly recommend them.

PPS Sorry it's all been about pain these days. I am afraid that has been the number one thing on my mind lately. But the pain is easing up, the muscle relaxants I'm using at night are helping, and the inflammation does seem to be responding to my naproxen. So I'll try to blog about other things. This weekend I have to do pick up a book from the library, take a friend to the vet, do the game notes I couldn't last week, finish a project, work on the house to the best of my ability, and most importantly, do my taxes. Yeah, I know, I've put them off terribly, and they're due Monday. Agggghhhh!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

So I can't say that today I was all better

especially during the morning, but I feel (somewhat) better than yesterday in comparison at the moment. Even so, I'm planning on taking some medicine my doctor prescribed for me and head to bed in just a bit. I managed to go to the doctor, drive to the pharmacy, go to work for a half day, and drop something off at my friends' house (although I used a cane to get around, as my leg was hurting, too). Then I drove home in a deluge, thereby saving the need for a car wash. It's back to physical therapy for awhile. Coincidentally, or ironically, I'm not sure which, I had my balance ball, yoga mat, and yoga block waiting for me at work from Amazon. I can't do much with the yoga stuff at the moment, or at least do not plan on doing anything until I talk to my therapist, but the ball might be useful, as I know some exercises that are good for the lower back using them. Anyway, thought I'd check in before I crash. Official diagnoses: lumbago, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, and sciatica. :(

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I surfaced

for food. All I've had is a little cheese today so I ate some chili and some frozen Greek yoghurt. I managed to get two of the the windows open (the third is too hard) and the windchimes in my living room, which are virtually always silent, are actually chiming a bit.

My shoulders and arms are also having some pain, but I think that's from my neck. So basically my thoracic region of my back is the only part cooperating with me today. I've been in bed resting all day. I have some exercises I downloaded from the Internet that are supposed to be good, from places like the Mayo Clinic. Right now I think if I got on the floor I might not be able to get back up. But I think I'll try them in bed and see if they help. In the meantime I'm going to try to get up and stretch a bit and see if I can help the situation at all. Wish me luck.

Another pain day

So yesterday I did not work out because my ankle was badly swollen and my back was still an issue. I had some strange idea that I would get up at five this morning and go. That came, and my back was hurting enough to wake me up, so I decided no, I should wait til it's better, and talk with my doctor in the meantime.

By seven I got out of bed and could barely walk. Pains were shooting down my legs.  I took three ibuprofen pills and called in to work. I told them if it improves I'll come in. I went back to bed.

A few minutes ago I got up and it didn't seem too bad. Then I walked. I'm heading back to bed with ice. It is slightly better than this morning, but I can barely move. I'm not sure about sitting up for any length of time. I'll try this afternoon.

Monday, April 08, 2013

It occurred to me

that I only had one pair of shorts, and they were denim, and some decent stretchy shorts might be a good thing if I'm planning to go work out (I hate sweatpants as a general rule, and get over-heated in them, unless it's very cold). So...after a trip to Gabriel Brothers, I have three pairs, one black, one grey, and one purple (of course). So, yay. I did call over to Good Foods to see if they had yoga mats still, with no real success, and there used to be some in the natural foods of my Kroger, but alas, no more. I'll take a towel to a class or two and if they don't laugh me out of the place, then I'll just happily use my towel, and if they do, then I'll think about getting a proper mat. I think they're frankly overrated, but I am by no means a yoga expert. I did fine without one in my living room for years, although of course, that was carpeted. We'll see. And there's always Amazon, which I'm sure has plenty of yoga mats and exercise balls as well, some of which are built for my weight. There are a couple of classes I'm interested in that are taught at times I can go: one is a just a basic yoga class, which includes beginners (I have done yoga, but it was in my own house to videos of Rodney Yee), and one called yin yoga, which is all done on the floor and involves stretching the back and pelvis/hips--the two areas giving me fits at the moment. There is an actual introduction to yoga that is good for people with limited mobility, but it's during the day. Apparently the classes that are for the people who are more limited physically are all taught in the daytime because you're assumed to be retired or disabled and not working, which I think is a little unfair. There are plenty of people who could benefit from those classes who work 9-5 or so.

So while the back is doing better, the area around my foot and ankle is now throbbing. I'm going to take this gym thing very slowly, I think, and listen to my joints and muscles. I'll also talk to my doctor on Thursday about my back and weight issues. One of my co-workers suggested a drug that has had some success in combination with another medicine that is supposed to help 'jump-start' weight loss. I'm familiar with the drug she mentioned (she couldn't remember the other it was in combination with). It's an antiseizure medicine called Topomax. I will check it out and ask about it if it looks decent, but I know there's no miracle pill out there. But maybe something to reduce my appetite would be good, if there aren't horrendous side effects. Unfortunately, having just glanced at things, I'm not certain it would be good for me: I already take a similar drug for another condition and also have ocular hypertension that is monitored every six months; topiramate/Topomax can cause a form of glaucoma, which I might be at a higher risk for due to my high eye pressure. So I'm thinking no. But it was good to look into.

Much improvement

I was at about half the amount of pain I'd had yesterday when I woke up and decided to try to go to work. Thankfully Brandon texted me at 8 am, as I totally slept through my alarm. Why the happy sparkly 'walk in the forest' alarm didn't wake me up but a chirpy whistle did, I don't know. But I got up, shambled into the shower, made it to work, downed a couple of ibuprofen and my meds, and went about my day. It took a little while before I could truly focus, but eventually my pain subsided a good deal and I started to get some things done (although it just occurred to me I forgot something that was non-work-but-is-professionally-related, so I need to send an e-mail to a colleague in my professional organisation. Fortunately she is also an editrix for one of the journals I've written for, so I have her e-mail address here at home). Whoops. The pain started again after I'd walked around the hospital getting my data entry sheets, but not as bad as it was this morning. After work, I took a friend's advice (YKWIA's, to be exact) and went down to the YMCA and joined. I took the tour, got the key tag and parking sticker, and the plan is to bring my things with me tomorrow and start then. The only bad thing is that the water aerobics does seem to be only during weekdays when I'm at work, but I'll still benefit from the pool and exercise machines. Maybe if there's enough interest they'll add evening classes, or perhaps I could rearrange my schedule twice a week (they teach them from 9 am-10 am); I have to be at work by 8:30. I used to have a 10:30 am-7 pm schedule. Maybe I could do something like that twice a week. Of course, that would put me back into a shift differential, so it might not fly.) We'll see. They do teach yoga and other classes in the evening.

Right now I have the windows open and I'm considering putting my feet up for a bit and taking a short (30-45 minute) nap, then work on some things here. I need to take some things out to the recyclables containers but I'm not sure I should try that the way my back has been. It's not heavy, but awkward. Then I need to pay some bills and finish those game notes. Also, YKWIA told me about a couple of things I might want to watch on Netflix, plus there's the 'Grimm' DVD, the 'Downton Abbey' ones, and the 'Doctor Who' and 'Orphan Black' I recorded the other night. Whew. It might take me awhile to work my way through all this. And I think I can take my band-aid off from my annual TB test I was given today. So, off to napping I go. :)

Odd story of the day...

Tonnes of nicked Nutella gives cops bellyache

Exactly what do you do with five tonnes of Nutella? This is the third strange heist in the area, the others being a trailer full of coffee a couple of weeks ago and several tonnes of Red Bull before that.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

Feeling a little better

I'm up at the computer for just a few minutes. I've walked out to the car and gotten my meds, which were in the glove box, and taken them. I finally got around to checking my blood sugar and taking some insulin. I've been in bed all day pretty much and had to try to get up for a bit and move around. It hurts quite a bit, but not as much as this morning. I took some more ibuprofen, too. I can't believe it's already 10 at night. My whole day is gone. A bit depressing, to be honest. But I've talked with A, Brenda, and YKWIA on the phone today, and that's been a bit cheering. But I think I'm going to head on back to bed and put some music on. I don't feel like reading or watching anything just now. Good night.

Yesterday's pain was apparently just a preview

As today I have spent almost all my time in bed with lower back and hip pain. I can't sit up for more than a few minutes, and standing is worse. So no game. I've been taking ibuprofen and put some ice on my back at YKWIA's suggestion, and am doing better than this morning. I hope this clears up before tomorrow. I've never missed work due to my occasional back pain. But if tomorrow is like today I will have to go to the doctor instead. Wish me luck. Meanwhile, I'm in bed blogging on my phone and I think it's time to go back to sleep.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

Long day

I spent most of the day with friends. We went to the grocery and then later to a men's shop for clothes. I modeled a couple of dresses I'd bought last week before we went, and while we were out returned one outfit that got a thumbs down response to Macy's, which was done quickly and without fuss. Then we ate at Smashing Tomato, which was pretty decent.

The whole day I've been in a fair amount of pain in my back and joints. My ankle is bothering me, but it's also causing me to walk in such a way that my knees, hips, and back are hurting, too. YKWIA suggested I look into water aerobics at the YMCA. I certainly need to do something about my weight, and I'm limited in the types of exercise I can do, so it's a good idea. So I will see about it.

I missed Doctor Who and Orphan Black, but I recorded them, so I'll watch later.

That's all for now. I'm going to rest for a little bit, keep my legs elevated, and then work on the game notes in a little while. Have a good night.

Something to check out

. . . Congress Disposes: ‘FDR and the Jews,’ by Richard Breitman and Allan J. Lichtman
By Richard Breitman and Allan J. Lichtman
Illustrated. 433 pp. The Belknap Press/Harvard University Press. $29.95.

Franklin Roosevelt enjoyed the overwhelming support of American Jews during his presidency, and the reasons are clear. In his three-plus terms from 1933 to 1945, he led the war against Hitler, supported a Jewish homeland in Palestine, appointed a Jew to the Supreme Court, chose another to be his secretary of the Treasury and surrounded himself with Jewish advisers who helped shape the laws that revolutionized the role of government in American life — what some critics sneeringly called the “Jew Deal.” Then, of course, there was Eleanor Roosevelt, whose concern for minorities fused the bond even tighter. When Roose­velt died in 1945, the Rabbinical Assembly of America described him, almost supernaturally, as an “immortal leader of humanity and a peerless servant of God.”

Born to Protestant wealth and privilege, the Roosevelts were hardly immune to the prejudices of their time. Before entering the White House, Eleanor described the future Supreme Court justice Felix Frankfurter as “an interesting little man but very Jew” and, after attending a function for the Wall Street financier Bernard Baruch, complained: “The Jew party was appalling. I never wish to hear money, jewels and sables mentioned again.” Franklin went even further, using anti-­Semitic banter to charm world leaders like Joseph Stalin who were known to fear and hate Jews. Indeed, it was the ability of the Roosevelts to set aside these prejudices that seemed to distinguish them from so many others of their class. When it mattered most, their nobler instincts took over.

This seems to be a well-researched and balanced look at what FDR did (and did not do) to mitigate the Holocaust, according to The New York Times. The Kindle version is $9.88. I'm considering purchasing it.

Up in the middle of the night

Today I came home about 8 pm, checked and opened my mail and e-mail, discovered I'd inadvertently forgot to pay my electric bill last month (I really thought I had, something I will rectify tomorrow), climbed into my new Day-Glo green jammies (which I would not wear around other people in general due to the effect with my ruddy Irish skin, but which are really quite comfy--if there's ever an emergency in the middle of the night, and I have these on, no one will have trouble finding me), plugged up my poor phone, which was down to 7% battery, even after some charging in the car, and fell asleep by 9. So now I'm awake and considering doing all the things I planned to do such as game notes and watching an episode of 'Grimm' (not the current; I have the first disc of the first season out from Netflix. The second season is piled up on my DVR, and I need to start really trying to go through it, as my space is almost full. But I'm not quite awake enough yet. I think I may go back to bed till 5 or so and get my eight hours in. I don't have to be anywhere until about 10:30 or 11 am.

Tomorrow I am going to the grocery with a friend and then we're going to go clothes shopping with another friend to try to track down an elusive jeans size. We're going to the mall, which none of us care for particularly. Wish me luck.

Friday, April 05, 2013

One last thing....

This was kind of fun...thanks to David Tennant for sharing on his Facebook page, along with the storyboard video earlier...

This was from late 2011. Now we just need one where the Doctor and Dr Sheldon Cooper meet up. :)

It is almost 2 am

But...I have dropped off my rent, gotten a receipt, taken a short nap, spoken to one friend and texted another, done three loads of laundry, taken the trash out, and paid several bills. All in all, it was a particularly productive day. Unfortunately, a couple of my friends were getting a little worried about me because their phone calls were going straight to voice mail, and then the voice mails didn't show up for several hours, nor did any indication of a missed call pop up on my notifications bar. It was weird. I'm not sure if that's a network thing, or my phone, or even possibly the visual voicemail application, but I'll try to determine that tomorrow. In the meantime I've checked, there are no updates to the phone's software or firmware, and I'm going to turn it off and restart it in case that will help. But for now, I'm going to call it a night. And yay, tomorrow's Friday!

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Lovecraft gets his due, in tiny scale :)

Tiny Octopus-Like Microorganisms Named After Lovecraft's Cthulhu
Newly discovered tiny octopus-like microorganisms have been named after the fictional monsters created by American horror author H.P. Lovecraft. The single-cell protists, Cthulhu macrofasciculumque and Cthylla microfasciculumque, live in the gut of termites and help them digest wood.
Here is the actual article:

Cthulhu Macrofasciculumque n. g., n. sp. and Cthylla Microfasciculumque n. g., n. sp., a Newly Identified Lineage of Parabasalian Termite Symbionts

Anyone familiar with HP Lovecraft should recognise Cthulhu. Cthylla, while part of the Mythos, was created by Brian Lumley, who also wrote the very creepy Necroscope series. They rather remind my of hid description of a Wamphiri more than great Cthulhu, to be honest. What do you think?

This made me cry

Ever wonder what happened to the Ponds, and to Rory's Dad, after last autumn's departure episode with the Weeping Angels? Here you go...in a lovely unfilmed scene that was told in storyboard fashion and voiced-over.

Thank you to the BBC for putting this up. PS--If you encounter a server error in the embedded videos--I'm experiencing them throughout this blog at the moment, go to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XWU6XL9xI4k&feature=youtu.be and watch it there, as it seems to be still working on YouTube itself. Trust me, it's worth it. :)

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

It was a rather odd birthday

Mostly running around for people, but I did enjoy a nice dinner at Texas Roadhouse (including indulging myself with a brownie). I didn't eat at all until 2 pm and then stuffed myself to my eyeballs, which probably isn't good given my desire to lose weight, but it was a special occasion, after all. I also watched some 'Waiting for God' with YKWIA and after all the errands and everything were done, I came home and napped for a couple of hours. My mom called me and we talked for quite some time. My phone's been vibrating all day with Facebook good wishes. So, it was a good day. I didn't go to a movie or do something particularly grand, but I got to talk to my friends and family, the weather was much nicer than they expected a few days ago, and it was nice to be off. I'm still rather tired. I was thinking of watching something on the telly but I think I may just listen to some music and have a quiet rest of the night. I may or may not post any more tonight, but in case not, have a wonderful night.


UK Digital Library chosen as one of five nationally for pilot project
As any researcher knows, it's easier to click a mouse than burrow through paper archives, looking for one piece of paper.

At the University of Kentucky, the Kentucky Digital Library has worked since 1997 to aid that process, slowly transforming huge historical collections from UK and other state universities — including old newspapers, family papers, photographs and oral histories — into digital content.

That work was recently recognized when the Kentucky Digital Library was chosen as one of five digital libraries nationwide to form the hub of a pilot project to make that information even more available: The Digital Public Library of America.
One of my first jobs years and years ago (the late 1980s) was a work-study position in micrographics where we ironed newspapers and microfilmed them from all over the state as part of the Kentucky Newspaper Project. It was a first step in preserving and making the information in them accessible. Now, the University of Kentucky has gone beyond that and that's great. Here's a relevant tidbit:
The launch of the Digital Public will take place on April 18 at http://dp.la. The Kentucky Digital Library can be accessed at http://kdl.kyvl.org.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Terrible, desperate, and wrong

Painful Payment for Afghan Debt: A Daughter, 6
As the shadows lengthened around her family’s hut here in one of Kabul’s sprawling refugee camps, a slight 6-year-old girl ran in to where her father huddled with a group of elders near a rusty wood stove. Her father, Taj Mohammad, looked away, his face glum.

“She does not know what is going to happen,” he said softly.
Fortunately, there was the postscript regarding the loan and the fate of the child:
After the publication of this article, the father who had agreed to give his daughter as payment for a debt called The New York Times and said the debt had been paid nearly a month ago by an anonymous donor.

The father, Taj Mohammad, and an American lawyer working with the donor confirmed that the debt had been paid early in March, more than a month after The Times began reporting on the case. Mr. Mohammad, for reasons that remained unclear and despite numerous conversations with reporters since then, did not tell The Times about it until after Monday’s article. As recently as in a telephone interview on Friday, when he was asked about any developments in the case, he did not mention the donation. Asked on Monday why he had not said anything about it, he gave no direct answer.

An article updating the case has been posted online.
But...this was one case. Perhaps Naghma will not be essentially given as collateral on a loan, for now. But what happens if the family's status worsens? And for every case where there is a happy ending, there are many more women and girls in a similar situation. What of the others like Naghma? And despite the fact that child marriage and selling of girls and women is illegal in Afghanistan, precious little is done to stop it. So horrible.

Happy, happy, joy, joy

It was nice being off today. I learned how to use child locks in my car and ate lunch at O'Charley's with Brandon and kids to celebrate our birthdays jointly (his was yesterday; mine is tomorrow, so we met in the middle). I generally seem more comfortable with children [or at least that was his observation]. Later I took another friend to an appointment and picked up his husband from work, trapped that friend in the back seat due to the child locks (hee hee). That was quite fun. Today I also got a package from Amazon with a fan for work, a pocket watch, and a DVD collection of 'Waiting for God', which I then watched some with YKWIA, and then helped him do some things and looked up some stuff online for him, and finally got home about 10ish. It's been a fairly relaxing, enjoyable day, spent with friends. I'm already getting birthday wishes from Facebook as well. :)

Tomorrow I'm taking someone to a doctor's appointment with our family doctor, who runs terribly behind and so that will take most of the day, which is a bit unfortunate, but really it is necessary, and I'll need to pay my rent and do some errands. I really need to do laundry, as well, but I am determined to do something fun on my birthday, and after all, I took it off from work to enjoy some time away from the grind. So we'll see. Anyway, I think I'm going to try the fan out and see how it works. I'll have to unplug the camera from the USB to attach it as I've been fiddling with photos--Brandon took this picture of me whilst we were at the restaurant:

Told you I wag getting huge. On the other hand, I didn't look too bad today. I may need to think about getting a hair cut again, though--I look a bit ragged and shaggy. Oh, well, I've certainly looked worse. And I suppose it's not too bad for someone who will turn 46 in about 9 hours. :)

Funniest tweet read tonight

From: Sarah Glassmeyer ‏@sglassmeyer
Watching Ghostbusters. Realized the reason the librarian screams when card catalog explodes is b/c she realizes she has to refile that shit.

For those who think marriage is defined by the Bible

Maybe you should re-read some of those pages. I point you to this:


It was so nice to sleep in today

I wound up getting up at nine, and I'm normally already at work by then. I'm dressed and ready to go over to Brandon's and pick them up, but that's in another hour, so I thought I'd pay some bills and do some other stuff online. It's sunny and is in the low 40s for temps, so it's shaping up to be a pretty nice day.

Today, being the first of April, and a Monday, and the day before my birthday, I am going to try to start keeping track of things like eating, exercise, blood sugar, medication, etc., with more zeal and see if I can lose weight. I have finally made it over the cliff of 300, after much dancing up to it, and I want to try to lose 50 lbs in a year. It would be great to eventually lose more, but I'm going to work on that as my goal. I have the tools I need on my phone--I just need to work at keeping track and doing much better with my eating and medicine. So wish me luck.

Okay, time to go pick Brandon and the kids up. Have a great Monday.