Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Twenty-five more posts

until I reach 11,000. Woo hoo! Okay, enough for tonight. I'm going to go read my Kindle for awhile--haven't done that in a bit. Good night!

I seem to get home about 8:30 or so at night no matter what I do during the day

Today is no exception. I picked a friend up from work and took him to get his bus pass and on a couple of errands, then took him to where he's staying. Then I went to another friend's and washed dishes, taught him how to forward an e-mail (apparently I've never covered this in all these years), and set his default font in Office to Times New Roman rather than Calibri because he prefers that. Then I headed home, parallel parking for the first time in a long time, and nailing it. Now I'm back in air conditioning, with a big glass of ice water, and eating a strange dinner of burritos, cheese, and fruit (a banana and berries).

There was a general notice on my door this evening from the leasing office about how someone really made a mess of the fitness room and laundry, even destroying a trash can in the ladies' room, over the weekend. That's a shame--I thought our tenants were more mature than that. If it continues, they'll just keep it open during office hours, which means I can never use it, as those hours are when I work, except on weekends, maybe. So here's hoping people straighten up. The apartment complex has been doing a lot of upgrading and without more than a tiny increase in rent--$5 this year--and they deserve better respect for their efforts. I think maybe they need to put in cameras. There probably should be some, anyway, as they're open from 5 am-midnight, and even with the fobs, they can't tell who all's been there, I'm sure, if someone lets others in, so it would make it more secure for those of us in there.

Work went really well today; my pace was very steady and I got everything accomplished I wanted to, even the monthly audit. It will be a slow clinic week, so I may catch up on some things that have been on the back burner like processing and cataloguing books and creating a new order to take advantage of our vendor's spring promotion (22% off). I wound up finishing everything up about 15 minutes before it was time to leave. I love days like that, when I feel my time has really been used well and I've had progress in meeting my goals for the day.

I've felt energised these last couple of days. One of my co-workers insisted that it might be the steroids they prescribed for my crud, as she always gets revved up and cleans house when she's on them. I don't know if that's true, but I have had a burst of energy. I thought it was just getting over being sick, but maybe she's right. I'm down to four pills a day and go down to two soon, so that'll be gone in a bit. But at least it was productive while it lasted. :)

My face is still pretty red, but the arms have darkened a bit into what I'd almost call at tan where I burned the other day. My neck got red, but not splotchy, for a change. So I look like I got sun, but no one's come up to me and said, 'Oh, God, don't you know what sunscreen is???'

I talked with one of my co-workers who was at the Cincinnati Zoo this weekend during the incident where a three- or four-year-old boy [accounts differ] climbed a barrier and fell into the moat of a gorilla enclosure, and then was picked up by a male gorilla, who was then shot to death to save the boy. They never made it to the gorilla enclosure, and didn't know what had happened until later. But her daughter is three, so I think she had a good perspective on things. It's caused quite a controversy, and I've avoided comment. I admit, my first response was, 'where on earth were the parents?', but I also know that as someone who has not had children, it's not very fair for me to comment when I've never tried to keep up with a quick, wily four-year-old. Even the best of parents let their guard down, sometimes for enough moments for a child to get away, and usually it doesn't have such terrible consequences--but it could. My understanding is that in this case the mother--who works in a care facility for small children--told him he couldn't go in the water when he said he would and then was distracted by other children in her care. My co-worker said it disturbed her and her husband that people have been posting the personal phone numbers and information of the family online for harassment, after having such a terrible scare. I have to agree. That's wrong. It's horrible that the gorilla, Harambe, was killed. Most of the experts are saying tranquilising the gorilla could have meant the boy was more likely to get hurt. I don't know if I completely buy that, but unlike apparently most people out there, I do know tranquilisers don't work as fast as what you see on TV and in movies, either, so they may be right. My friend did say the enclosure had a small barrier, a brushy area, and then the moat the boy fell into that the gorilla retrieved him from. Maybe the zoo needs to consider another system of barriers.

But the fact of the matter is that the great majority of the people calling for blood over the death of that magnificent creature weren't there, don't have all the facts, and probably should not be making comments. Do I wish they'd done something else in response? Yes, of course, if at all feasible. But if the boy had died, the same people would have been blaming the parents and the zoo for a terrible tragedy, too. There really is no winning in this situation. It does, however, bring up a dialogue on keeping wild animals in captivity to be gawked at by clueless humans, all in the name of preserving the species and conservation. Don't get me wrong, my grandmother instilled in me a love of that zoo (I've been to only three, but the Cincinnati one is the one I've been to the most). I think it can be very educational. But there are issues that the animal rights people (many of whom I think are a bit too far in left field, no matter how much I love animals) have some very good points about. Anyway, the authorities are now investigating, and I'm sure there will be lawsuits and reports on what could have been done differently, that sort of thing. I am very saddened by the death of the gorilla. I'm very glad the boy is alive. Enough said.

What I've been following more than that, however, is the story out of Japan where the parents put their child out of the car for misbehaving (he'd been throwing rocks at cars and the like, definitely spoilt brat behaviour) in an effort to discipline him and left him, supposedly for a few minutes, out on the side of the road. When they returned, he was gone, vanished into a remote forest full of bears. Now hundreds of people have been looking through the area for FOUR DAYS trying to find him. Initially the parents gave a story of him wandering away while they were looking for wild vegetables, but then confessed that it had been a time out gone wrong. They are, of course, now very regretful about what they did.

Regretful? I know lots of people threaten to put their kids out of the car (and I know at least one who did, briefly, but not in a bear-infested woods), but this, I think, was not thought out well. I'm sure the kid said fine, I'll show them, and hid in the woods, figuring he'd make them look for him, and then got lost or hurt. He's seven, it would be natural. I hope they find him safe, for his sake, and that of his parents.

What do both of these stories tell us? In just a few short minutes, everything can change, especially when dealing with small children who don't really know much about life, but think they know everything there is to know. It's all our responsibility to keep kids safe, and we have to be vigilant--not just parents, any of us, of when they are in danger. But a parent must, especially, because ultimately, not only did you create this little human, he or she is yours to protect for life, and any day that you put them to bed safe and sound is a good day. Hold their hands, hell, put leashes on them if need be, but keep them close, because in a moment, everything can change, and what is done cannot be undone.

Monday, May 30, 2016

That was close

Yesterday I bought a graduation card for one of my cousins, and I was going to send it to her tomorrow. I was going through my mail basket, which was mostly junk, looking for her address and also was trying to find a bill to go with one in collections that was a medical bill I hadn't seen before. I went through the whole basket, kept maybe eight pieces of mail, including a $20 settlement check from some class action suit against a credit card insurance company, the envelope her graduation announcement (which is hanging on the bulletin board behind my desk at work), and lo, the original bill, which got lost in the shuffle, where something wasn't ever turned in to the right insurance company. So that was helpful. Then I went and put everything in the recycling bin that I didn't need to keep, and was about to go on my way, when I realised the card and envelope were gone. I'd scooped them up with everything else. So, I had to go through the whole bin looking for a blue envelope and card. Thanks goodness they weren't white, as they'd have blended in with all that mail.

I've set up a landing area near the door for the basket, a small bin underneath for recyclables that can be transferred later, and then on the other side of the door is a postal box with slots for bills according to the day of the month. So that'll help. These weren't that old or anything, all withing a month or a month and a half, but I should have gone through them before this.

That's my main project here for the day. I went over to YKWIA's and helped him go through his bills and take care of things, then we watched a movie from the 70s called The Fury, which is based on a book he'd read years ago and is re-reading now. He wanted to do something fun, and gave me the choice of what we could do, and quite frankly I couldn't think about much to do. I'm afraid I'm more of a supportive fun person when it comes to more than just me. :) After that I came home, watered the outside plants. and planned on working on the house. But I ate and spent some time reading the news, and I got sleepy, so I laid down for awhile with the sun streaming through the window. Then I got up and at least worked on the mail area. It's getting dark now, and my desire to put things in order is fading, but I've gotten a lot accomplished this weekend, after all, both at my friend's house and my apartment. I got so much laundry done that it's corralled at the moment, and I can work on the rest of the house this week--the bedroom especially. I may still turn on the lights, some music, and the fan and work in there tonight. But I'm not going to hold myself to that--tomorrow will work. Instead, I may go put on Netflix and watch something or listen to Pandora, and read. I haven't been reading much again lately.

But first I need to go over the finances and see if I can get some wine tonight or tomorrow for my libation, as it's that monthly time again. I may write later, but if not, good night. Hope you had a good weekend--it was sunny and less humid here today, with a nice breeze, and I mostly kept out of the sun today. :)

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Turning in for the night

It was a good day.  I got a lot accomplished.  I took care of myself well,  but also helped someone else.  Tomorrow we have a project that might take an hour or two at the most.  I think I'll work on some things here in the morning,  particularly the bedroom and the dining area. But for now,  I'm finally cooler,  have taken a shower,  eaten something,  taken my night medicine,  and it's time for bed.  Good night!

Forty minutes later

and I've filled the ice cube trays, taken the trash and recyclables out, including the old lamp that hadn't made it yet (thank goodness for granny carts), and straightened up a bit. I did forget the trash in the bathroom; I'll get that later. But I'm now at:
    Stats according to Samsung Health:
  • 115 minutes activity (109 walking, 6 running)
  • 11,080 steps total
  • 1,092 calories burnt
  • 5.85 miles walked
  • And a badge saying it's my best day yet. :)
I'm going to go reward myself with a cool shower and some time in front of the fan. :)


and to air conditioning, yay! I started my day at 8:30 am, was over to a friend's by 10:00. I:
  1. Stopped by and got some drinks at Circle K.
  2. Cleaned my friend's house.
  3. Did my laundry.
  4. Did his laundry (except for the dog blankets, as they don't need them right now as it's hot and he hasn't put his air conditioning on, yet).
  5. Went to the grocery for both of us.
  6. Went back to the grocery because the milk was leaking.
  7. Had to back up an entire lane at Kroger because someone two cars ahead of me was waiting for a space for four minutes, causing the person to lay on his horn like a crazy person.
  8. Watched Hotel Transylvania 2, which was quite fun.
  9. Loaded up two laundry carts, two reusable totes of food, a backpack, and a few odds and ends into the car, and then into the house.
  10. Managed to get the carts in the living room despite a narrow entry, nearly flinging a candelabra across the room.
  11. Took my afternoon medicine.
I'm sweaty, still sunburnt, and generally ready to just plop down and enjoy the coolness that is my apartment. It's after 8 pm. I feel like I've been running for twelve hours. But it was a good day, nevertheless. So far I've done 100 minutes of activity, per my phone, and 9,552 steps--almost the recommended 10,000, and I average 5-6,000, and burned 952 calories, walking 5.03 miles. My best day so far was 106 minutes, so I'm very close. I may do a few things here before totally plopping down. But I think a shower may be in order, too.

So, yesterday's project was the car

Today's is cleaning a friend's house (which I've finished,  after four hours), and doing both his and my laundry.  I had not done mine last week because I wasn't feeling well. So I had a super load of hand washables,  a super load of regular clothes,  a bath mat,  and then my bedding.  Then there's his.  But it's coming along.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Definitely time to take a break

The hand soap I got from the store unscrewed and got all over the bag,  the lotion had a plug in it and exploded outwards when I pumped it,  and I can't find my lip balm in its place in my bag Things are not looking good at the moment; time to take a break,  rest,  and start over later.

Note to self:

when you have pasty Irish skin and are on certain antibiotics, do not stay outside in the sun for an hour cleaning out your car and its trunk without proper sunscreen. On the one hand, yay, I got my car looking spiffy again; on the other, I also look like a lobster on my arms, face, and neck. I just took a cool shower and will put some aloe lotion on it.

Oh, and the stupid thing is I had sunscreen in my bag, in the car, the whole time. I did put some on afterwards because I was doing a lot of driving around this afternoon and thought it would help prevent further issues, but it was a bit like closing the barn door after the horse has run off. I have also been so terribly hot today, soaked to the skin, my hair wet with sweat and then dry again. I took a cool shower the moment I got through the door, and that helped, and got into some shorts and a tank top. I'm going to put on the lotion and then go lie down in front of the fan for awhile. At least I'm back in air conditioning. I've been in the car, outside, or in a house with just the windows open for something like ten hours now (although we did put the ceiling fans on for watching Hotel Transylvania, the Netflix DVD I have out).

I'm pooped for now, though.

Friday, May 27, 2016

He's saved countless lives by teaching others the Heimlich Manoeuvre

this time he got to use it himself:

Dr. Heimlich Uses His Maneuver For The First Time, Saves 87-Year-Old Woman
Dr. Henry Heimlich didn't hesitate. When a fellow diner started choking, the 96-year-old was ready to perform the maneuver that he invented. He had never actually used the technique in a real situation.

This all happened Monday at an assisted-living facility in Cincinnati, The Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Resident Patty Ris, 87, had swallowed a piece of meat and was struggling to breathe. Perry Gaines, an employee of the Deupree House — who had in fact performed the Heimlich maneuver before — ran toward her table. But Heimlich was already in position.

"Typically, a staff member would do it," the Enquirer reports. " 'But,' Gaines said, pausing, 'it is Dr. Heimlich.' "

A little fun at spelling bee time

Alaska can't spell Hawaii, and this other state can't spell itself: In honor of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, Google Trends releases a map showing which word each state struggles to spell.

Unlike my fellow Kentuckians, I can spell 'maintenance', but according to this map, I should live in Minnesota or Montana, because 'vacuum' is a challenge for me, and often takes two tries. I might come out on some of the others, as I use International Standard English spellings in general, not American ones (sorry, have for years--it's just a quirk from reading lots of British literature plus a love for archaic pre-Webster/Dewey spellings), so there's things like 'grey' and 'neigbour' instead of the ones as they are placed on the map. I am a little confused as to why Utah and Arkansas share the whole thing about leprechauns. Amd poor Massachusetts.

Midnight regimen

  1. Banana.
  2. Brush teeth.
  3. Drink water.
  4. Lantus shot.
  5. One of my normal pills.
  6. Albuterol treatment with nebuliser.
  7. Clean the assembly.
  8. Drink water.
  9. Codeine cough syrup.
  10. Recharge nebuliser (It's down to one of three battery levels, after 24 hours/3 treatments. Not bad.)
  11. Return to bed.
Of course, I fell asleep earlier. Why wouldn't you expect it? Besides, I'm sick. :) BUt I got at least four hours of sleep just now. If I can get another four, I'll be happy. I'm almost done with my breathing treatment--just a little more medicine to go. It really does sound like Darth Vader. I suggest getting kids to take it with that in mind. So after that it's just the quick cleanup, the cough syrup, and back to bed. Good night. Oh, and for the record, the codeine syrup isn't quite cherry, either, though it tries. :)

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Still not orange :(

But,  hey,  as long as it works.  Speaking of medications,  this was what I took this morning. It's a little frightening.

So much for not being contagious

My best friend now has the crud. Same crud, but fortunately a lighter case. He didn't have to have the shots or the nebuliser. But he's been to the nurse practitioner, been armed with medicines, and is now resting at home. I went ahead and did a few chores to help out, then came back. I'm breathing much better now, although I'm still coughing, but in spurts, not constantly, as the generic Delsym helped quite a bit. My nose is doing better too, probably because of the guaifenesin I got this morning. So now I'm home, eating homemade bread with peanut butter and spreadable fruit, and contemplating what to do next. I'm not tired enough for bed, but not perky enough to do much more in the way of chores. And I'm hot, very hot, and have been all day, even though I've been in air conditioning for most of it. I'm wearing pants that are thin, but I normally only wear in fall or early winter, because they are velvet. I have a very light blouse on, but it has to have a camisole under it because of that. Worse of all, I didn't do laundry last weekend because I was starting to feel bad, and so I'm almost out of underwear, and so I wore--of all things--a pair of Spanx, which of course are probably made from Lycra and Spandex, and not particularly breathable. And of course, there were socks, as with all the rain I didn't wear my sandals. If my feet are hot, I'm hot. Those got chucked as soon as I came through the door. As soon as I eat I'm going to slip into a nightshirt or shorts and be done with that, and maybe sit in the bedroom in front of the fan for awhile.

Despite being sick, and all the coming and going for appointments, I've been chugging along at work. The only thing I really need to focus on tomorrow is my referral queue, as I haven't had the voice to make as many phone calls as I should have this week. I did use the nebuliser at work today, going to the far side of the library so the sound wouldn't disturb my cubicle neighbours, who were training a new employee, and as I took the treatment I decided it really is 'my Darth Vader machine'. It really helped last night to take the breathing treatment. Today I had a pretty bad coughing fit afterwards, but it's calmed down since then.

I'm really looking forward to having the holiday off. I don't actually have anything planned yet, and that's okay. Friday there is no 'Grimm', but there's a late appointment to take my friend to. amd there's another on Saturday noon. Sometime this weekend I should do laundry, we should do a grocery run, and there's Hotel Transylvania out from Netflix to watch, which arrived today. That's it. Mostly I think we'll just be recuperating from the crud. I'm not sure when the hiatus from the game is slated to end. I miss it. But Sundays have been less busy, I must admit.

Okay, I'm finished eating and it's time to compare cough medicines to see if the ingredientsoverlap enough that I shouldn't take the second dose of the generic Delsym now, since I'll take the other right before bed. I don't know if I'll write any more tonight, but if not, have a good one.

PS Hmmm...the Z-Tuss has an antihistamine and the codeine in it. The Delsym has a decongestant, but nothing else that might react. Only the night time Delsym is listed online as an interaction. On the safe side I should probably call the pharmacy, but I think if I take it now, and then take the other about midnight, it should be okay.

Oh, it tried for orange flavour

and so failed.


I process codeine cough syrup in about four and a half to five hours, tops, so I woke up coughing slightly at 3:45 am, worse by 4:20, and then by 4:45 I was out the door with a cough drop in my mouth on my way to Kroger for the daytime stuff so I wouldn't be coughing my brains out. Of course, it was thundering and lightning. It was sprinkling on the way to the store, a decent rain by the time I got there, and then all the heavens broke loose while I was inside (thankfully). I proceeded to stock up on vitamin B12 and D, since mine has disappeared, Kroger Mucinex and Delsym cough syrup, as directed by the nurse practitioner. I also got some bread, blueberries, and bananas, more Kleenexes for work--since I went through half a box yesterday, probably, and some trash bags and toothpaste since I was low. Everything fit in two bags. I did forget to get more Ricola drops, though, and I gave some to my cubicle neighbour, who was coughing pretty horribly yesterday, so I'm getting low.

Now I'm back home, and my strangling cough I had through the store has subsided while I'm drinking something. I'll take the Delsym in a few minutes. It's 12-hour, supposedly, so it can stay home. I'm already taking a small pharmacy and a nebuliser around in my backpack these days, anyway. It was funny, I was getting the Delsym and it asked for my ID at the U-Scan. They didn't even need my ID for the codeine the other day at CVS. :)

I did change back to my other masque for the CPAP, the one with the nasal area rather than the pillows going into the nose, as my nose is a little raw these days. But I went back to the sizing card and my nose length is just on the border between small and medium, so I went up to the medium nose piece instead and it fits better, snugger, without leakage. I slept much better as a result. When I slept, anyway. Oh well, I got about five hours total. That's better than one of my co-workers who has a six month old who gets fed every few hours or so throughout the night. So I won't complain.

Well, it's almost six. I was planning on getting up then, but I think I'll take some of this new cough syrup and try to sleep till 7 am, anyway. And right on cue, there is the dulcet tones of my Scottish music (Battlefield Band) which indicates my cell phone morning alarm is going off. Better snooze for 60 minutes....

Wednesday, May 25, 2016


Feeling much better. I'm coughing more, but I can breathe. Not singing-type breathing, but at least my chest doesn't feel like it has a walrus on it. I've actually made boxed macaroni and cheese and have bread ingredients in the bread maker. I realise that's not really cooking and baking, but hey, it's better than I could manage yesterday. In a little while I'll try this nebuliser contraption and see if that helps me breathe better tonight.

This morning

I took three injections,  two eyedrops,  four sprays from a nasal spray,  and 23 pills.  (It would have been 24, but I couldn't find my vitamin D.)  Some of that is from the crud,  some from my normal routine,  but thankfully I am feeling better and with all that I should improve immensely.  But it is a little scary.

The cough syrup

lasts right about at 5 hours, so I got exactly that much time uninterrupted sleep before having a coughing fit. I can't take any more tonight, and I don't have a daytime syrup yet, so I'm up working on a Ricola cough drop and some water before going back to bed. My alarm is actually set for about 20 minutes from now, but there's no reason to get up quite that early, as I can't go exercise this morning like I would like to. So I'll reset it for 6 am. I am breathing much better, though. Yay!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

One more thing

Darlene at Lincare over on Regency Road was great about teaching me how to do the nebuliser.  I'm charging the battery now.  She even put in an extra masque for me, and stayed a few minutes after quitting time to explain everything so I'd have it tonight.

Okay,  that's it.  'Night.

I went to sleep around 7:30

and now I'm up and contemplating my new medicine.
  • Antibiotic--I just took that. It's twice a day for 10 days. In retrospect, I had a different antibiotic this afternoon in injection form, so maybe I should have started this tomorrow, but what's done is done.
  • Antihistamine/Decongestant--Again, took this, as it'll help clear up the sinuses, where I'm getting the choking drainage from.
  • Prednisone--I'm going to wait until tomorrow morning for that; it's a once-daily, and I had a substantial steroid shot this afternoon. Since prednisone and related drugs can really mess up blood sugar, I don't want to overdo it. I also need to make sure I take my nightly Lantus and I'll check my blood sugar tomorrow morning as usual.
  • No nebuliser medicine, unfortunately. I think that really would have helped. I'll take it with me tomorrow; maybe I can get it filled by the afternoon, anyway, and take a treatment then, and another at bedtime. I'm supposed to do it up to three times a day, but definitely before bed. In the meantime, I'm going to use the inhaled version of the same medicine (albuterol), part of my 'rescue' inhaler, to see if it will help, before I go to bed. I figure you use it prophylactically before exercise, so in this case it could help open the passages before sleep.
  • I unfortunately couldn't get the expectorant or daytime cough suppressant. They're over the counter and aren't payable with my flexible spending card (thank you, IRS--that used to be allowed), and I don't get paid until Thursday. So Thursday morning we know what I'll be getting.
  • That brings me to the nighttime cough suppressant. I haven't had codeine in years. And I have to figure out how much 5 ml is. Is that a teaspoon, for instance? I'll look it up. The plan is to drink my water (everything seems to go better if I get plenty of that, then take the syrup, take my Lantus, and head back to bed. I have to put my regular pills together in my weekly reminder box for tomorrow, but I'm going to try to do that in the morning. Must remember to leave out my allergy medicine while I'm on this other antihistamine.
Gee, being sick can be complicated. And this is for a respiratory infection. Think of the cocktails people with HIV have to do or those with cancer. Throw diabetes in the mix, with steroids, and it might make for an interesting few days. Sorry to take up so much of this on being sick, but it is a little foremost in my mind at the moment. I am breathing easier, at least; the cough is becoming worse than the shortness of breath, a tradeoff that, while it's very easy to get tired of coughing, and it hurts, is better than the feeling of an elephant on your chest. The plan tomorrow is getting up early, getting my meds together and the usual morning preparations, continue taking the various medicines, and trying to get as much work done as possible. I did manage to get an awful lot done today, despite being there only part of the day. I'd thought I'd be back (I didn't expect it to take that long for a chest x-ray--the hospital's computers were down and so they were 45 minutes in just the wait for intake, and about 1 hour 15 minutes for the whole wait just for that. The doctor was also an hour and 15 minutes. By the time I got out of both, it was after 4, and I had to get the nebuliser and medicine before they closed at five and six, respectively. (At the time I didn't know the nebulising medicine wasn't included at the pharmacy, and even if I'd gone back to work, I'd have worked for a half hour. I actually had a different appointment at 5:30 this evening, but had to cancel it at the last minute--well, reschedule it, anyway, to go geth the nebuliser in time. Fortunately if you explain you're having breathing issues, they're likely to be nice about it.

Okay, time to do a quick Google search on dosage and then take the syrup, take the Lantus, and go to sleep (hopefully). Good night!

PS 5 ml is, indeed, a teaspoon, but you should use a measuring spoon rather than a household teaspoon, as the latter differ in actual size. Since I'm dealing with a fairly powerful syrup, I'll stick with that recommendation.

Wow, I'm tired...

I left work at 1:10 pm today. It is now 6:45 pm. I am finally home. I have the crud. I have had two shots in my butt, had blood taken, had a chest x-ray, was prescribed numerous medications, and I am now the proud owner of a nebuliser. Unfortunately, the doctor's office forgot to send over the script for the liquid that goes in the nebuliser, so I can't use it tonight and will probably have to go to the pharmacy again tomorrow. But still, I should be on the mend and breathing better soon. Don't worry, lunch bunch, I was told I wasn't contagious. I had to go to two pharmacies because my normal one was out of the codeine syrup.

Official diagnoses: Asthma, Shortness of Breath, Acute Sinusitis, Acute Serous Otitis Media (Bilateral), and Cough. In other words, the crud. I had the two shots (an antibiotic and a steroid) and have been prescribed an antibiotic, a prednisone pack, the syrup for nighttime, an antihistamine/decongestant, albuterol (for both the nebuliser and rescue inhaler), and an expectorant. I have been referred to a pulmonologist as well. I have been running all over this town going to the nurse practitioner/doctor's office, the radiology department of the hospital, the respiratory care company, the two pharmacies, and back home. I pretty much crossed town and back, as the doctor/hospital was in the east and the pharmacy was in the west. The respiratory place was somewhere south of middle, and work is basically in the middle. So the only part of town I didn't go through was north.

I've never used a nebuliser before, so the lady showed me how. This one is a portable one that can be used at home or at work. It even had a chargeable battery and car adapter. I really wish I could use it tonight, as the whole crud thing is worse when I'm trying to sleep. But I should be able to tomorrow. Unfortunately the doctor's office had already closed when I found out it wasn't at the pharmacy, so I'll have to call them tomorrow.

So now I'm tired. And I'm a little peckish, but at the same time, don't want to eat, and I don't have much in the house, and what I have must be cooked, so I'm just not feeling like scrambling eggs or making macaroni and cheese or other pasta. Maybe later. I think I'll take start what medicine I'm supposed to and take a nap (not take the codeine quite yet, though).

Go figure

Funny how usually I make excuses about exercising, but since I've been having an asthma flare up, I've actually wanted to go to the gym.


I've irritated my throat with all my coughing.  I don't have an expectorant or suppressant,  but I found some Ricola cough drops that are probably three or more years old,  but they've been kept well and are still fine,  so I'm taking one before returning to bed.  Maybe that will help. I am so sick of this,  and it hasn't quite been 48 hours (although I did admit to my friend today that I've actually had milder breathing problems ever since the Pledge incident,  so what,  a week or two?)

Monday, May 23, 2016

I think

I slept a grand total of one and a half hours last night, even though I went to bed at 10:30 pm. I couldn't breathe well at all, and I started coughing up stuff every time I laid down. I tried sleeping propped up. That didn't help. I changed CPAP masques and that did, a bit. But generally it was a miserable night, and I seriously considered going to the emergency room, but I figured I wasn't dizzy or starting to turn blue, so I was getting enough air. I considered the fact that I could have a cold, but it didn't feel like one at all. I don't feel sick, or have that feeling one gets with a virus. Everything is in my chest, which is tight, I'm wheezing and coughing, and I just feel like I can't get my breath, like something's standing on my chest, and I'm coughing up whitish gunk (which, at least, isn't green or ye;low). My nose has had a little congestion, but really nothing beyond my normal allergies. Today it cleared up for awhile starting about 9 am, but then worsened later in the afternoon and into the evening, especially when I was driving around doing errands with YKWIA after work. He urged me to call our doctor tomorrow and make an appointment. He has experience with asthma and has had some medical training and even worked in a hospital for years caring for patients, so I should listen to him when he says this is not normal. I'll call tomorrow.

Also today, T-Mobile released the Android Marshmallow 6.01 update for the Samsung Galaxy S5, and so I updated my operating system. For some reason my Day and Night Live wallpaper isn't showing up in Daydream mode anymore [their notes on their Google Play storefront state that Marshmallow is not yet supported for this, so hopefully it will be soon]. It was the one application I had that had special Daydream features. Some applications no longer have their normal icons, all of them ones that are partly on the SD card, instead showing just a little Android. I see applications are listed in internal and external storage,but not how to switch them like I could on Lollipop. [update: I figured that out later, and if you move the application back to internal storage, the icon pops back up]. On the other hand, things are much faster, even though I now have used 13 GB of 16 GB of my internal storage. Actually, even while updating, it specifically said it was optimising 320 applications. :) I don't have that many downloaded, though, so some are preloaded. And is it silly that while the update happened, I was amused by the little Android figure with its antennae twitching back and forth?

I'm listening to a Duran Duran station on Pandora.  I am breathing a little better with the CPAP on and the air conditioning running. I hope this clears up soon!

[2 am update: sorry for the previous errors, which are now hopefully taken care of. There are certain hazards to blogging on your phone quickly (I never learned to type quickly on a virtual keyboard, but rather learned to swipe along the more sophisticated Android keyboards, and so I can go pretty quickly, but sometimes autocorrect is not my friend). Proofreading while you're not really feeling your best is not conducive to good writing, either. Okay, I've had some water and done something that required being up in the middle of the night for someone. Now it's time to go back to bed. At least I was able to sleep for about two hours before I woke up in a coughing fit.]

Sunday, May 22, 2016

I had to use my inhaler today

and actually, while I normally use it once or twice every six months or so, I've probably used it five times in the last two weeks, once during the whole Lemon Pledge Incident, the rest at various times. I assumed at first this was because we have a very high grass pollen and moderate tree pollen count at the moment, and have for awhile. And that is probably part of it.

But this time the inhaler didn't work that well. I kept coughing. It was hard to talk. I sounded like I had bronchitis but I haven't had a cold or sinus infection, I've run no fever, I'm not feeling sick. I just can't breathe well. I even put my CPAP on for about an hour and a half to see if the filtered air helped. I've closed the windows and put the air conditioner on, finally. I talked to YKWIA on the phone a little while ago and he suggested to soaking my feet in very warm water, which acts as a vasodilator. His neighbour had mowed grass today, but the windows of the house were closed and the dogs weren't out during that, really. I'm also itching, which isn't usual with my grass allergy. (I'm allergic to just about everything outside and quite a few inside things, as well). So, I've thought about what I had or did today and the only thing unusual was that I drank some hazelnut coffee. Then it occurred to me that other day that I had walnuts, and my lips itched after I ate them. I had to take a hit on the inhaler that day, too, I think. I eat tree nuts pretty often; now I'm wondering might be developing an allergy towards them. Years ago I tested mildly to them, not enough to be considered an allergy, but not a neutral reaction. So I definitely need to talk to the allergist. If hazelnut coffee puts me into wheezy breathing and making it hard to talk for 3-4 hours, it could get worse. In the meantime, no tree nuts for me, I think. Also, I was going to make baklava and take it to work next week, but I'm thinking that might not be a good thing now. And while I have made it with peanuts (legumes, not tree nuts, not the same) for someone with a tree nut allergy, it just isn't the same; it comes out more like peanut butter between phyllo dough.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Hot, tired, and aching

I went over to a friend's house after work to help with chores,  like litter,  trash,  recyclables, and washing some dishes. I took the Herbie (trash container) and Rosie (recyclables container) out to the curb. Now I'm home,  and I've watered my plants here,  and have quite a bit to do,  but I'm going to take it easy for awhile and rest. Hopefully I don't actually go to sleep for the night. But I definitely want to give my neck and back a rest.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

There is a fine line between aiding and enabling

and although you do care for a person deeply, sometimes it is more important to let him experience the true consequences of his actions or choices. But it doesn't mean you stop caring about the person or even stop worrying about his welfare. Some people need to hit rock bottom before things really begin to change. That's especially important of someone in the grip of an addiction. Sometimes when you care, the best thing to do is step back and fight down the urge to rescue. But it is hard--and far harder for the person himself, I'm sure, to endure the mess he's made. I have to keep reminding myself of that lately.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

I brake for ducklings

And fortunately I have anti-lock brakes,  as they engaged when two female ducks and their dozen or more offspring decided to cross the road as I was headed home from taking a friend to the grocery.  :)  Yay for anti-lock brakes!

I voted

Did you?

Monday, May 16, 2016

I have an excellent reason

To head on to bed: tomorrow is the Kentucky primary,  and I have to get up early to vote at a new location,  the new Eastside Library branch,  which replaced the old Eagle Creek Library I used to go to.  I'm interested in how they set up,  as the old library's meeting room was right as you went in. The new one has the rooms upstairs. Since the library opens at 9:30 am,  but the polls open at 6 am,  I wonder how it will be set up.  It should be interesting.  There are only three offices on our precinct's Democratic ballot: President,  Senator,  and Representative (Kentucky has a closed primary system--you can only vote on your party's ballot,  and this year the Republicans held a Presidential caucus in March, so they're only voting for lesser offices). I hope for a good turnout.  Be sure to go out and vote,  Kentucky! And if you're a Democrat,  I hope you will consider Bernie Sanders for President and Jim Gray for Senator.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

That was absolutely brilliantly done

It was an excellent film, and Benedict Cumberbatch did a remarkable job as Alan Turing in The Imitation Game. I've seen the two films that were in the previews as well--Philomena and The King's Speech, both excellent. This was even better. All I can say is, wow. I knew the basics of Turing's life, but the film really brought it all to life. And it's so sad that someone so brilliant, who saved countless lives through his work, and contributed so much to what we now consider computer science (which has revolutionised our lives, so much so that we carry handheld computers with us and call them smart phones) was forced choose between prison (which would have interrupted his work) or to undergo chemical castration (he chose the latter) all because of prevailing attitudes regarding homosexuality at the time. Alan Turing died when he was 41 years old--8 years younger than I am--officially of suicide, although some have argued for accidental cyanide poisoning. It's sad, and even though he was pardoned years later and his story came out, I think the important thing is that we have learned that different doesn't mean bad, and that we should embrace differences as very basic to our humanity. Just because someone thinks differently, to paraphrase the movie's dialogue a bit, does not mean they do not think; just because someone has different preferences, does not make them less human.

So, most of today was helping a friend work on his house

but after I completed the chores, we sat down and watched the movie Minions, which was quite enjoyable, and had a lot of stuff for those of us familiar with the 1960s culture, etc. And the minion language is presented consistently, so it was actually pretty easy to follow, after awhile. The cast was great. I particularly like Jennifer Saunders, whom I presume was Queen Elizabeth II, as it sounded like her and I did see her in the opening credits. 'Gentlemen do not steal ladies' crowns!' :)

Now I'm home and I'm considering watching The Imitation Game, that DVD I have out from Netflix. I watched an episode of 'Sherlock' the other day while a friend was in an appointment, and finished it later that night, so I'm in a Benedict Cumberbatch mood, I guess. I should go on and watch it so I can send it back tomorrow in the post. Next up, one for YKWIA/both of us: Warlock: the Armageddon.

Okay, I'm going now. Have a good night!

Hmmm...while the information is public, I'd have least liked to be asked if it was okay to use

I'm not sure if my profile and information made it into the dataset, but I agree that there are ethical considerations and rules that were violated in taking this sort of (even public) information through data scraping and publishing it without informed consent, a concept drilled into the lowest-ranks of researchers, as one of the basic tenets of post-Nuremburg Code research.

Researchers Publish Data Set of 70,000 OKCupid Users
"Yesterday morning I woke up to a Twitter friend pointing me to a release of OKCupid data, by Kirkegaard. Having now spent some time exploring the data, and reading both public statements on the work and the associated paper: this is without a doubt one of the most grossly unprofessional, unethical and reprehensible data releases I have ever seen," wrote Oliver Keyes, a research analyst at the Wikimedia Foundation, in a blog post.

"A fundamental underpinning of ethical and principled research - which is not just an ideal but a requirement in many nations and in many fields - is informed consent. The people you are studying or using as a source should know that you are doing so and why you are doing so," he added later.
It is also, of course, a reminder to users that we put a lot of our private information out on such sites (including this one, I agree I probably overshare), and that we should consider whether we'd like that information to be out there before posting.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Thursday, May 12, 2016

I had two things I wanted to accomplish tonight

  1. Go to the store and get sympathy cards for my friends on the loss of their pet.
  2. Watch The Imitation Game, which I have as a DVD out from Netflix right now.
Instead, I fell asleep, oh, about 6 or 7 pm, and didn't wake up till a friend called me tonight around 10 pm. Uncharacteristically, I went on out, even though it was late, to get the cards. I also found a beach towel that (Heaven help me) matches my swimsuit, a bright pink. They were working on the pool today, getting it ready for Memorial Day weekend. :) I haven't watch the movie, and probably won't tonight, although I'd like to. But it's already 11:30 or so.

It's been a sad day. I'm taking the poor dog's passing harder than one friend, who, secure in knowing it was time, is comforted by that. I am, too, I guess, but I'm just more emotional, or at least don't keep quite the control of emotions that he does. I tried putting a picture of her on my desktop, but it was too soon. Instead, I put up a theme of playful puppies cavorting and playing from the Microsoft website. It cheered me up. My favourite picture of the slideshow looks like this:

A friend surprised me by showing up at work for lunch today. He's got a lot on his mind, and wanted to get out of the house. We'd been in a meeting when he showed up and I didn't hear the page. My boss bought us lunch from Salsarita's food truck today, and I was going through the lunch line for a drink when the cashier said a friend was here. He joined us and we had a pleasant lunch. There was so much food in the Salsarita's order that I split it with him. The chips and burrito bowl were very good, and the poquitos were excellent. I wasn't so much into the queso, though, but maybe it was an off day.

I forgot to take a couple of books back to the library today, so I'll get charged a day of fines. I'd been doing so well! Oh, well, 30 cents or so won't break me. But I'm definitely going to try to run them by on the way to work tomorrow. I have another due tomorrow that I'm going to try to renew--the one on the Medici family.

Okay, I think I'll get those cards ready to send. I can't find my stamps (again); no doubt I put them in a safe place, but not the postal box. I'll have to pay tomorrow at work for them to run through the meter. Oh, well.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Oh, my poor girl

I am very sad tonight. As I wrote the other night, while I have no children of my own, or even nieces or nephews, as I have no biological brothers or sisters, I am 'auntie' to furry creatures, one of whom has not been doing well. We had made plans to take her to the vet tomorrow to have her put down, as she was drinking very little, obviously hurting some, and was making her way very slowly like the little old lady that she was at sixteen years old. I let her outside for a bit earlier this evening, and went to check on her later, and found her dead. It looked like she had just passed away peacefully. I'm afraid I had a bit of an emotional breakdown. It was the first time I'd ever found a body of something or someone that I loved. After that, there was the matter of what to do with a dog of her size until we could get the body taken care of, as the vet had already closed. Plans are in motion, and phone calls were made, and I did what I could and now I'm home. I miss her already. She was a great watchdog, devoted to her pack, which included four people (Brenda she considered an absolute goddess). She was very smart, and that's why it was so hard to watch senility creep in. She was a collie shepherd, and sort of looked like a Shiloh Shepherd, the size and colouring of a German Shepherd but lighter-built and with long, flowing hair that she blew yearly and went everywhere each Spring. :) Brenda taught her to use her paw to beg for treats. It was so endearing. Not so endearing, yet sort of at the same time, was her tendency when young to take that long nose and put it under your arm and nose her way to being petted. They broke her of that years ago, but lately, she'd started doing it some. She went from being young and vibrant to older and deaf, sleeping for long periods for the first time in her life, as she'd always napped for fifteen minutes at a time, at most, ever watchful [although the raccoon incident happened during one of these rare naps]. Oh, she was such a good dog, and she was a rescue who had a great life with people who loved her dearly. I pray she's at peace, and her spirit (for I do think animals have some sort of one) is off chasing voles and enjoying herself. I am glad she died at home, with us there, and that she was out where the birds were singing and the breeze was gentle. It was a good way to go. But oh, how I wish we could have kept her young and puppy-like. My thoughts are with my friends, who loved her and gave her a home, and who are no doubt hurting tonight. It's so hard to lose a member of the family, even a four-legged one. Rest in peace. You were a very good girl, who was well loved--and loved well.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Just got home

and I'm kind of tired and not really feeling like searching out neat stuff to write about. I think I'll go to bed. But today was better than yesterday, when I had a full-blown asthma and allergy attack at work thanks to, of all things, Great Value (Walmart) Lemon Furniture Cleaner [Update: I later learned that while most of the housekeepers use the Walmart brand, this particular person specifically uses Lemon Pledge, so it is the name-brand cleaner that gives me issues]. I had to take my data entry sheets and go to the employee break room and stand there to finish my work at the computer there, and I left an hour early, because I couldn't be in the library for more than a minute or two. This morning it had dissipated and was fine. But yesterday I was very ill, and even though it improved after I got out of my workspace, I was dead tired by the time I got home (about 8?) [after watching 'Grace and Frankie' episodes, which were great] and went on to bed even though it was light outside, listened to music for awhile, and then slept fitfully most of the night. Today was better, although it looked like it was going to be a very sad day indeed, something that's merely put off a few days, but will have to happen. One of the dogs I'm auntie to is doing poorly, and if the vet had been there today and been free, we would have taken her to put her down. Tomorrow there's another appointment. Maybe Thursday. She's not acutely sick, but she is having some major problems. But considering she's usually 50 lbs and a least 16 years old, she'd done well. She's a good dog, and has been a great watchdog and used to shepherd us around. Poor thing, she's senile now. I don't think she even knew me when I walked in this afternoon. But it'll have to be soon, and that's sad.

Maybe that's one reason I find I'm feeling somewhat surly; I wish she were younger and doing better. I hate losing pets, but it's an inevitable thing, unfortunately, and it's our job to make their passing as painless as possible. I just hope we can get her into the car and up there; she's snapping if moved too quickly, because with her arthritis, I'm sure it hurts, and she doesn't know where she is, really.

I'm also just tired and cranky, so I'm going to turn on in. The plan is to get up early tomorrow. We'll see.

Good night.

Sunday, May 08, 2016

It's been a pretty full day

We're taking a break from the game, but I went over and did the normal cleaning and more,  and spent some time with YKWIA. He was giving me pointers on responding to people on OKCupid who message me.  I went home a little before 9 pm,  and I've spent a lot of time since answering questions on that site to help with matching. I'm up to 850 questions answered so far.

I also spoke with my mom,  wished her a happy mother's day,  and got some good news about her health - her cancer is gone.  Yay!

What else?  Oh,  I finally graduated from taking two children's vitamins a day to one Centrum Silver (although the new ones are also chewable). Technically,  I'm not 50 yet,  but I figure I'm a year away,  so if I'm going to take an adult vitamin,  I might as well take those.

Okay,  it's 11:30 pm,  and I'm going to try to get up at 6 am tomorrow and actually exercise before work. I'm getting sleepy,  so I'll sign off here.  Good night.

Saturday, May 07, 2016

A few random things from today

  1. I discovered my betta had died today. I'm not sure if I'll replace him; it's only a three-gallon tank, and while it has a filter and bubbles and all, it's not ideal for a fish, and one can't go in the same tank (a 29 gallon long) with the goldfish because he'd probably fight with them, as bettas are terribly territorial.
  2. I went to move my flamingo plant today in order to open the window and there were hundreds of ants (with pupae) underneath. Gross. I put the saucer on the windowsill next to the ant bait so they can either go outside or take the bait that's nearby. It was swarming too much to take it out through the apartment and the hall to the outside, so I just used the window screen.
  3. I have a terrible sinus headache that has lasted for hours. It looks like it'll storm, and it's definitely supposed to rain tomorrow, I think. I'm going to lie down in a little while and see if that helps, after taking some ibuprofen.
  4. I've visited a friend and helped him with a few things. He wasn't feeling great either and decided to lie down, so I came on home. I'll go back about 7 pm to help feed the animals and see if he's doing better.
  5. I saw a great interview by a young woman with autism with Channing Tatum earlier. She uses a pad to communicate. It was her first interview, and she did a great job. She's got quite a sense of humour. Her name is Carly Fleischmann. YKWIA showed it to me, and we both liked it.
  6. I usually pick a grey horse for the Kentucky Derby, if there is one running. This year, there are actually four on the roster, at least three with the same sire. I'm going to go with Creator, I think. Yesterday the odds were 10-1. I'm going to make sure I get up in time to watch the Derby. What can I say, it's a big thing here in Kentucky. Even if you're not partying or at the tracks, you're probably going to tune in for the actual race if you can.
  7. I learned that I am incapable of using a 2-bladed razor, apparently, without doing bodily harm to myself, so I went to the store and got a five-bladed razor and some more shave cream to prevent 'cuts and nicks' in the future. I had a time stopping the bleeding, and finally slapped a giant Band-Aid on it. Maybe I should have looked for a styptic pencil as well.
  8. When I went to open the window, I also discovered my aloe had lost its root structure, and while it is still alive, has nothing to anchor or nurture it, so it is essentially the unwalking dead. I rather like aloe, so that's sad. On the other hand, I took some bits that had fallen off my Christmas cactus and put them in dirt, oh, a couple of weeks ago, maybe, and one is budding. Yes, budding. So not only has it rooted, it's getting ready to bloom.
  9. Having a headache is detrimental to my grasp of grammar--I had to make three corrections to this post, and two weren't typos. :( Hey, it happens sometimes when I'm tired or in pain, what can I say. At least I proofread both before and after I post.
I guess that's it for now. I'm going to go rest and see if I can take care of my headache. I'll probably write later.

Friday, May 06, 2016


These were guarding our employee entrance this morning when I got to work (and yes, I have been chased by geese before, with their ridged beaks that feel like teeth, so I gave them a wide berth.) I wonder if we'll have goslings soon? I have to admit, while I can definitely tell the difference between male and female Mallard ducks, Canadian geese bewilder me in terms of which one is the goose, and which is the gander, so I don't know if this is a opposite-sex pair or not. :) Anybody know?

A wonderful short film

Courtesy of Aish.com
It is called 'Porcelain Unicorn', and is a film by Keegan Wilcox and winner of the Philips 'Tell It Your Way' competition.

Thursday, May 05, 2016

How to be a jackass

Tow truck driver refuses to tow motorist over Bernie bumper sticker

He feels proud to have finally drawn 'a line in the sand' by leaving a disabled woman alone on a busy Interstate after she was in an accident. Too bad he can't be proud of being a decent human being. And of course, he's a Trump supporter, no surprise there. Personally I think in this case it had less to do with politics than the fact the guy's just a royal jerk. He blames this woman, who had given no indication she wouldn't pay him, because (he says) two other Bernie Sanders supporters argued with him over their bill, and since all of them must be socialists and evil, so must she. Gee. What black and white thinking, so not grounded in logic. And why do people like this refuse to do their jobs by claiming God is on their side? I hope they spread this story far and wide, and people think twice about calling him for a tow. And no, I'm not upset just because I have a Sanders sticker on my car. I also have the marriage equality sticker from the Human Rights Campaign, a Read-Support Libraries licence plate, and a Doctor Who licence plate frame with a strange word, TARDIS. I wonder what he would have done to my car?

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

No less than four ants

Managed to scuttle onto me tonight; I had thought I was winning the war.  Now,  I'm not so sure. I was in different areas of the living room,  sitting or standing,  although I think most got onto me while I was on the loveseat. Hopefully the bait will help,  though.

I almost died today

Not to be melodramatic, but if 1) I hadn't had good anti-lock brakes and 2) they had been going just a bit faster and had't been able to swerve into the other lane, our cars would have T-boned each other, with them doing 45-55 mph and me doing about 15-20 mph. And it would have been my fault, because I was impatient and even though I couldn't see clearly around the cars in the other turn lane, there seemed to be a lull in the traffic and I turned left right into their path. Not the brightest thing to do. Fortunately, both of us reacted well, didn't hit, and thank the Gods there wasn't another car in the far lane and the black sports car with which I almost collided had room to swerve over. We came within inches of a very nasty wreck that could have killed us both and any passengers that might have been in the other car. I am usually such a careful driver; I don't know what possessed me, really. Let's just say I've had a lot on my mind and was trying to go pick up someone with a lot of mixed emotions. But I don't intend to make that mistake again. Life is too precious to die over something stupid, or take someone else out, just because you're a bit impatient.

One last thing

before I go back to bed. These are cheering up my desk (they're forced bulbs in a vase sitting on a plastic insert that keeps the bulbs dry, but with a little water around the roots, so I can do this on my own next year). And they're purple! Good night.

I first learned

of the Drake equation back in school during a delightful class on extraterrestrial life that blended biology and astronomy under the tutelage of Moshe Elitzur, a wonderful professor. Now there's this:

Are we alone in the universe? Not likely, according to the maths
By flipping the question of possible alien life to a question of whether we are unique, researchers find it much more likely the universe has seen many civilisations come and go.

Last night some drama happened

not to me, but to people I love, and my thoughts are troubled tonight as a result, so much, in fact, that I had to put soothing music on in the bedroom to sleep at all, and I'm up now, in the middle of the night, pouring a libation and seeking wisdom and help in guiding things along. No matter the outcome, I can only help by being supportive, by being there when called, by being a good friend. I wish I could take the pain away, but pain is how we grow, how we mourn, how we learn to accept a new reality, and how we prepare for the road ahead. But it's hard to watch the hurting and know there's a limit to what you can do to make it better.

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Learn how to be #StigmaFree

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. I thought I'd link to this very good opinion piece that gives a personal view of seeking help for anxiety and depression:

Me, myself and anxiety: Embracing the stigma around antidepressants by Steven Hall

Also, here's a link to learn more about mental health issues:

NAMI|Learn More: Mental Health by the Numbers

Monday, May 02, 2016

I found this to be an interesting read

After 'The Biggest Loser,' Bodies Fight to Regain Weight

I never watched this show, partly because I thought it was terribly unhealthy in its approach to weight loss, and it reinforces the simplistic view that weight loss is just a matter of willpower, and there's the issue of fat shaming. Obesity and weight loss are actually quite complex issues. The study referenced by the Times was published online today in the journal Obesity: Persistent metabolic adaptation 6 years after “The Biggest Loser” competition. It's a little scary that six years after losing the weight, their metabolisms have slowed so much that to maintain their weight (and several have gained either part or all of the weight back, or even more), they have to significantly eat less than a person their size would need to. Strict dieting is not the answer, obviously. And I read something a year or two by one of the contestants (not sure who, or which season) about how the exercise had harmed her joints, going from inactive to major almost boot camp-style exercise hours per day in a short time. Why do people call this entertainment, anyway?

I'm not saying weight loss is inherently evil, or obesity is somehow good. What I am saying is that the factors involved are not entirely understood, the goal shouldn't be so much about weight loss as health and moderation in diet and exercise, and people shouldn't have horrible relationships with food--and should learn to embrace food as the staff of life, a basic necessity, enjoy flavours without gorging ourselves, and food should not be something that fulfills us emotionally, or causes us dread, or somehow makes us sick because of things we ascribe to it that aren't necessarily based in science. Food is not the adversary; our bodies are not the enemy. Making small changes, being mindful--those can help when they build up. Making good, healthy choices, can pay off. This doesn't say, 'just give up', it just says that the mindset we often have towards diet and exercise simply is not good for our bodies.

Me on a typical Monday

This has been travelling around Facebook; I'm not sure where it originated. But it definitely describes this particular Lisa.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

I finally worked up the courage

to message someone on OKCupid, a dating site. I've been on there for some time, mainly for the quizzes, but I've never actually communicated with anyone before. I'm not sure if he'll message in return, but at least it's a first step, right?

A find!!!!

The official Chuck Lorre vanity card collection (as seen at the end of each episode of 'The Big Bang Theory'). Finally, I need not pause at the end of each episode on the DVDs.

Chuck Lorre Productions: Official Vanity Card Archive

I envy my upstairs neighbours just a bit

Sure,  I wouldn't want to climb stairs every day,  and certainly when I broke my ankle,  it was a godsend to be downstairs.  But I can't open my windows at night now that I no longer have a dog who would alert me to an intruder. I tried to open my bedroom window and insert a cane to prevent it from going up more,  and that did work,  but it could be easily circumvented.  So I closed it back.  It's only 72 degrees in here,  but I'm hot,  so I just turned the fan up to the next setting and took off my sleep shirt.  I'm not ready to turn on the air conditioner quite yet.  Hopefully I can get back to sleep.  Good night.