Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Monday, April 30, 2018

Happy Bealtaine, by the way!

Today I:

  1. Got pooped on by a bird within 30 seconds of exiting my front door, on a day where I was happy with my outfit and thought I looked nice. Fortunately, I was in a thin but long-sleeved shirt, so I didn't get any on me.  I walked back into the house, went to the front entry closet, where my clothes are kept (left over from when I was living in the living room), and changed shirts, although things didn't match quite as well.  Everyone I've told the story to has told me that it's supposed to be lucky.  I'm not sure how.
  2. On the other hand, I went to take my medicine at the beginning of work and realised that one of the pills looked off, and in fact looked a lot like something I took last night. I pulled out a magnifier I keep with me to look at the imprint, put it and the shape and colour into the drugs.com database, and it wound up being tizanidine.  They're pretty mild, really.  Each tablet is only 4 mg and you normally take three at night, but they can make me loopy.  So I'm glad I caught it.  I went through the other bins of the pill reminder box and there was one more.  I'm not sure if I consolidated some other medicine and accidentally put tizanidine into a similar bottle, then put them in the reminder box, or what.  I think that's what happened, anyway.  To be honest, I'm not sure what small white pill I accidentally substituted it for; I think it was my furosemide (Lasix, or diuretic).   Thankfully, tizanidine (also known as Flexeril) has a scored side where you can divide it into fourths, and that's what clued me in because I noticed it last night when I took them. I guess that was lucky.  Oh,  wait, we're back to the bird poop.
  3. After work (which was steady) I went and picked YKWIA from our friend's house, took him home, let him rest for a bit, then went on a major grocery run on my own.  It took an hour and a half.  I got everything on the list except wine.  I got to the liquor store that's attached to Kroger just at 10.  I asked the security guard if they were closed, and he said they were.  I asked when they closed, and he says, 'They're closed now.' Well, gee.  I got that part.  So I ask, when do they normally close so I know next time.  Nine? Ten?  It was ten--so technically I came up at 9:59, but oh, well, we'll have to get wine to cook with tomorrow instead.  Most of it was fresh produce, dairy, beans, that sort of thing.  YKWIA pretty much never cooks out of a box--it's all real food.
  4. I came home, he helped me bring things in, and he put them away and I did a few small things to help.  Now I'm going to go plotz on the bed.
PS I started the manual update to the April 2018 Windows Update before I left.  It's still in the downloading phase, at 18%.  This may be an all-night sort of thing.  Okay, again, time to just collapse on the bed, listen to music and pretend my back still likes me.  Oh, and maybe take a couple of those tizanidine pills. :)

Sunday, April 29, 2018

I'm pooped, and it isn't even game time

Today I've:

  1. Laundered my bedding and clothes
  2. Changed out the spring and winter clothes, put spring clothes away, packed up the winter ones, and prepared to take them to storage
  3. Swept and mopped the floors
  4. Cleaned the bathroom
  5. Taken out the trash and recyclables
  6. Cleaned the cat boxes
  7. Started a loaf of bread
Yesterday I cleaned a very dirty shelf with magazines and did YKWIA's laundry, and that was enough to make my back hurt quite a bit, so I laid down for awhile while he helped a friend out at his house who is battling cancer.  They called me to go get Subway and we all ate and visited, then we got home about 8:30 pm.  I think we were both done in by midnight (he's been over several days in a row and took the bus out Friday, getting lost on the walk over there, and probably walked four miles back and forth until he found it), and we .were up by 7:30 am.  I have no real reason to be as tired as I've felt lately.  I've done some housework and of course, I worked at the medical centre, but still, I'm just tired all the time.  I've been up doing my stuff and listening to shows he's watching (he finished the 'Almost Human' DVDs and we watched a couple of episodes of 'Up the Women'.  I unplugged my tablet, which has been on the charger for two days and really needed to be unplugged and just turned off.  He's got a lot of documents to transfer to it and we're going to see if there's enough room once I cleaned my stuff off of the microSD card.  There's not much on it, now, just some basic applications and one from Adobe for reading PDFs and one for reading Word files.  That should suffice for him.  I haven't used my old tablet for some time.  I'm not sure it'll have the processing speed he'll need, but it's worth a try since neither of us can afford a newer tablet or laptop right now.

Today I'm looking forward to the game.  I'm kind of grungy and should go ahead and take a shower, but I'm just not up to it.  I'd like to lie down for awhile, but the bed hasn't been made yet.   I just feel a mess today. 

My strawberry plant that Brenda gave me is back outside after being brought in for a frost advisory last night, and it has two ripe strawberries and one that is turning on it.  I have lost three smallish African violets recently, including the two pink ones in the bathroom and a purple one in the bedroom.  I'm not sure what happened; they got puny and I tried to save them, but it was a no go.  On the other hand, one of the orchids has grown a new leaf and I have two that are getting ready to re-bloom.  Maybe orchids are more my thing, although I've had no problem with violets before.  The window seat in YKWIA's room is lush with shamrocks, an umbrella tree I just repotted, dumb cane, and philodendrons.  They love that window:

So overall, the plants are doing well.  Also, the orchid at work is putting out new shoots and buds.  I separated the stems out to give them more room:

It's the same colour as part of my mousepad, my pen holder, and my water cup, so it's coordinated to the checkout bay. :)  What can I say, I like it when things match.

Okay, I'm going to go check on the last of the laundry.  I realised I started the bread while still running the dryer (the bread machine is on the washer, as that's a good place for it usually when I'm not washing, as it has a tendency to 'walk' as it mixes, which is apparently supposed to happen, according to the manual.  But the vibration isn't good for rising bread.  I don't want to mess up this loaf.  I'm experimenting with all-purpose rather than bread flour, as I'm low on the other.  But the other day I forgot to put the yeast in until 30 minutes into the cycle.  While it was edible and looked fine, it was chewier than usual.  I can't believe I did that.  I was washing dishes and remembered suddenly, doing what I could to fix things.  It wasn't bad, but not ideal.  Hopefully, this one will come out fine; I definitely put all the ingredients in. :)

Sunday, April 22, 2018

So tired

I finished everything on my list except putting away clothes and bringing the winter ones out for storage.  That will simply have to wait till another day.  YKWIA called me about 4:30 or 5 and wanted me to make a run to Long John Silver's for everyone, and I went over there, got some money, got some gas, as I was on my light, with the last of my funds, and got the food and went back.  We visited for another two hours or so, and it was good to do so, but I stood most of that time and YKWIA had done a lot of helping around the house, so by the time we left we were both hurting and tired.  I got home and had to put my feet up for a bit, and then got up and did the dishes and floor.  YKWIA made some coffee and then went into the bedroom.  Now everyone else in the house is asleep in there.  I had to pull out the little dog's bed because she'd been in the kitchen with me and I'd taken up the blanket to sweep and mop, and she was distressed to not have a blanket in every room. :)  The bedroom one is fleece over a comforter, so particularly cushiony.  Anyway, I'm finished.  I'm going to go to the bathroom, drink a little water, listen to some music, and lie down.  At eleven I'll get up (that's the plan anyway, take some medicine, get him to take his medications, and then I'll go back to bed for the night.  I may have to take some tizanidine--everything feels like it's out of alignment and there are pain and numbness radiating out to my limbs.  Our friend's 93-year-old mother is probably in better shape than either of us, really.  Bless her heart, she has a lot on her plate, with his illness and her age.

Okay, I'm definitely lying down.  Everything's hurting.  Rain is coming, and that's part of it, perhaps.  Oh, and the cat is awake, so I think he wants me to lie down so he can cuddle.  Good night.

I'm rarely home without YKWIA

But he decided he wanted to do some things for our friend alone and just needed me to take him there, so I came home.  I've got several chores to do today, so it made sense.  I made a quick stop for cereal at the store (I needed some and I was one point away from 40 cents off a gallon of gas, and I need to get some when I pick him up).  He's going to call the house phone when he's ready, so no headphones while I work.  So I brought my little boom box out from my room and I'm playing Pandora through my phone on the auxiliary setting.  The dogs were angrily barking when I got back; they hate being left alone completely.  So I've let them out and back again, I am eating some of the cereal, and I'm listening to the music (the 3 Doors Down channel, which I've listened to for a couple of days and liked almost every song played).  I took a shower earlier, which was great, as I hadn't had one yesterday or the day before (I usually skip a day at the most and usually shower every day or my hair looks horrible, even though daily cleansing can be drying to the skin).  The bread cooled before we left, so I put it in its container to keep fresh.

So what do I need to do today?

  • Laundry
  • Pack up the winter clothes and put away the spring and summer ones, then take the winter ones to storage
  • Cat boxes
  • Clean bathroom
  • Sweep and mop tile
  • Put away dishes and load dishwasher
  • Do the plastic dishes/hand washable ones
  • Finish backing up the computer (I've mostly gotten it backed up but had to leave in the middle)
  • Make my bed (the cat was on it earlier, on the blankets--he claimed the bed when it was first delivered about a month before I came to live here
I took out the trash and recyclables yesterday, although there are a few more to go out, and I forgot the wine bottle where we had a whole bottle go into soup the other day.  I think there's just my laundry to do, maybe a little of his, but no bedding this time, hopefully.

Okay, I should start working.  Hope you're having a good Sunday. I wish there were three days to each weekend--I need a day between Saturday and Sunday just to relax.  But it's been a nice weekend so far, really.

I'm up and

listening to Pandora this morning and getting some caffeine after a fitful night's sleep. This song came on, which I have always loved. Today we're going over to an old friend's house who is very ill and helping him with some things. I think I'm going to consider this an anthem for today, in terms of helping make the world a better place and making a difference in other people's lives.  Since we're going to be there this afternoon, I'm making bread now and then later, when we get back, I need to do laundry.

Yesterday was pretty productive.  First, I went over my next few pay periods to see if there was a chance of taking care of anything I'm behind on financially.  Then I called H&R Block to discover that the Richmond Road office is already closed, but my paperwork should be at the Tates Creek office waiting to be filed as soon as I can pay to do that, and they'll keep it up to a year. I filed for up to six months of an extension with both the state and federal governments.  Then I called a creditor, but they'd closed a few minutes before.

I took the recyclables out, repotted several plants and watered them all, put the strawberry plant Brenda gave me for my birthday back out on the hanger (there was a freeze warning the night before).  I cleaned and dusted two shelves (we're doing that on a rotating basis so the bookshelves aren't too overwhelming.  There are five walls between the library (my bedroom) and the bedroom that are entirely built-in bookshelves.  Next week I'll only do one, as it's a large shelf of magazines on the bottom of a range.

I spoke to our friend on the phone, and then to Brenda's husband to cancel the game since we're going over there today.  Because of that, I didn't work on the game notes.  Instead of that, I went and looked up part-time work (I'd applied to Kroger earlier in the week, as well as a part-time computer associate at the public library), and in the process discovered a job at the University of Kentucky and one a Bluegrass Community and Technical College, and I applied for both.  The first is a temporary, grant-funded position but pays very well and while only lasting two years, pays over twice what I make now.  YKWIA thinks I shouldn't consider it. because it's essentially got an expiration date.  But one thing I've discovered in the lay off is that all jobs do, and at least this one has a set date you know to have everything wrapped up by.  It could also help me with my need for more supervisory experience and consists of digitising a collection, which appeals to the historian and librarian in me, but also would help increase my experience in digital preservation and provide professional academic library experience.  So I went ahead and applied.  The BCTC position is a circulation manager; again, it would help with being pigeon-holed as a solo librarian for all those years.  I have supervised student workers, but I need more real-world experience as a manager.

YKWIA is up and has made coffee.  The cat is very happy as YKWIA does morning feedings and I do evening, and we instituted that from the get-go so the animals wouldn't beg for food and be loud in the morning when I was getting ready for work and YKWIA was asleep.  He's been fed, and the dogs have as well and are outside, although little dog didn't eat (she does that sometimes) and I had to take her food away from the cat, as he's allergic to, we think, chicken and grain, and so he has his own special grain-free fish-based food.

Okay, I'm going to go check the news.  Have a woderful Sunday, and remember, it's Earth Day!

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Love Google's Earth Day Doodle this year, featuring Jane Goodall

This year's Earth Day theme is fighting plastic pollution.  Do what you can to remember the day on April 22nd and celebrate the diversity and fragility of life on our planet.

Interested in a huge sound database that you can download from for free?

Look no farther than the BBC! Sounds are copyrighted by the BBC, but available for download and can be freely used for personal, educational, and research purposes.  There are over 16,000 sounds in this collection.  Go to BBC Sound Effects to download or learn more.

Thanks to Darren Moura-Smith for the heads up, sharing this link on the Call of Cthulhu Role-Playing Game & Players Facebook page.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Interested in Kindle books in translation from around the world?

Amazon is giving away nine books in honour of World Book Day.  See the particulars at:

Amazon announces several free Kindle books for World Book Day

The free books are:

  1. A River in Darkness: One Man’s Escape from North Korea by Masaji Ishikawa, translated from Japanese by Risa Kobayashi and Martin Brown
  2. The House by the River by Lena Manta, translated from Greek by Gail Holst-Warhaft
  3. Still Waters by Viveca Sten, translated from Swedish by Marlaine Delargy
  4. The Great Passage by Shion Miura, translated from Japanese by Juliet Winters Carpenter
  5. Last Train to Istanbul by Ayşe Kulin, translated from Turkish by John W. Baker
  6. The Gray House by Mariam Petrosyan, translated from Russian by Yuri Machkasov
  7. The Question of Red by Laksmi Pamuntjak, translated from Indonesian by Laksmi Pamuntjak
  8. The Light of the Fireflies by Paul Pen, translated from Spanish by Simon Bruni
  9. Ten Women by Marcela Serrano, translated from Spanish by Beth Fowler
I had already purchased the Turkish one, but I got the other eight for free during the promotion, which runs through April 24th.  All sound very good, although I am particularly intrigued by The Great Passage and The Gray House.  We'll see.  I thought I'd pass this along, though.  If you need a direct link to the giveaway, go to their Read the World page.  To explore more to do with Amazon Crossing, which aims to bring world literature in translation to a wider audience, you can check out the Amazon Crossing page.

Enjoy!  😀

Saturday, April 14, 2018


After writing today, and visiting our friend--which it was very good to see him and speak with him after all this time-- I went to the grocery to get more contact lens cleaner, took out the trash, and started the laundry (I'm having a devil of a time trying to get the bedclothes dry), and then I've spent the last couple or more hours going over some financial things. I've come to the conclusion that the only way I can make it at all, especially with the taxes to pay, etc., is to get a second job, something part-time.  I went ahead and applied to the Chinoe Kroger, and I'll keep looking for other opportunities.  I think I could work on Tuesday, Thursday, or Friday evenings and most of the day on Saturday, without being terribly tired, maybe 16-20 hours a week.

YKWIA is watching 'Hunderby', a British comedy set in the 1830s.  It's got a lot of mystery to it.  I moved into my room (although I can still hear it fine), mainly because the computer has been off its charger all day and I needed to plug it back up.

I called Brenda and we're set to play tomorrow.  So it's just the laundry to get finished, and like I said, it's being very slow to dry.  I'm thinking I may use the spare bedding and concentrate on the comforter and blankets.  The pillowcases didn't really need to be done (the sheets, despite a cover, get the blonde dog's little tiny hairs all over them).  The black dog is blowing her coat; I'll have to sweep the house tomorrow in addition to the usual things I do to prepare for the game.  But they are very sweet doggies.

Okay, I think I'll listen to some music while waiting for the laundry to finish.  Good night.

I somehow managed

to get through Friday, which was a slow 'catch-up' day in clinic, despite almost no sleep.  It dragged by, but I got quite a lot accomplished and got to actually speak with my co-workers more than just a moment or two, which on a busy day is kind of normal.

Last night, I kept YKWIA company while he made dinner and also some soup for someone we're visiting today who is battling cancer.  I haven't seen him in about 20 years, but YKWIA were good friends for a long time and he owned the comic book store we both worked in for a while.  So we thought we'd go and get caught up, visit, and bring soup.

I was very tired before bed, and I was still hurting a bit, although stretching to get things off the printer from my chair during work did help some.  So I took three tizanidine (the recommended dose), a muscle relaxer I've been prescribed for my neck issues. and I slept like a baby, only waking up early this morning to the cat howling because the wind through the windows had shut my door and he was trapped in my room.

Today I have:

  1. Gotten some medicine I forgot for YKWIA the other day at the pharmacy, as well as a small bag for myself.
  2. Paid my rent [I pay half every two weeks].  I'd forgotten the deposit slip for his account (we have the same credit union, so I just transfer it), but they were able to look it up.
  3. Got new lenses for my glasses (for free!).  In August 2016 I got new glasses and got the 2-year Crizal lens warranty.  It was a year before I got one scratch on it, but even though I always use microfibre cloths, they starting getting scratches on both lenses when I was wearing my glasses full-time after running out of contacts.  So, I asked about that, they traced my frames and had new lenses recut and when they came in, I just had to stop by and they popped the old ones out and put the new ones in.  Easy peasy.  I did accidentally leave my travel contact solution on their counter, as I had to take my contacts out to check the lenses were properly made, so I'll have to get some more from the store.  But the travel size that comes with the first pair of contacts is pretty small, so I needed to get more anyway as it was less than halfway full.
  4. Helped close all the windows in the house, as it's about to storm.
  5. Made my bed (usually I do when I get up, but I waited a bit today).
When I got home, I started to feel shaky and wonky, checked my blood sugar, and despite having eaten breakfast (a toasted blueberry bagel, cream cheese, and a banana) just two hours before, my blood sugar was 48.  So I ate a sandwich with peanut butter and spreadable fruit and drank some orange juice (not in that order).  I feel much better.  I may have to dial back my insulin further, which is good.

Now I'm caffeinating and have a little downtime while YKWIA gets ready to go visit our friend.  I don't have to do any notes today due to the fact we visited without playing the Cthulhu game last week.  Tonight I should really work on finances.  I can't pay much of anything, but I need to come up with a plan/call a couple of numbers that are incessantly dialling my phone.  And I have to figure out what to do about the taxes.

Okay, that's all for now.  Hope you're having a good weekend.  It's been in the 70s here, and was nice and clear this morning, although it's going to rain the rest of the weekend, and then the temperatures will plummet on Monday.  But still, it was nice driving weather earlier.  I had Bastille playing in the car, the window rolled down (my hair is a mess), and my sunglasses on.  Not a bad day, so far, really.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Up in the middle of the night

And no, it wasn't the soda.  I sleep in two braces, one on each arm, and tonight they're hot and uncomfortable, they're not helping the pain in my hands, and one arm is hurting from the hand all the way up through the shoulder to the point where I'm having trouble sleeping.  L Although the pain is radiating UP my arm, I know it comes from nerves being impinged at the neck on between the chest and shoulder, as I've had trouble before. I just got up to go to the bathroom, originally thinking it was later and I might as well get up and stay up, but it's only 3 am.  Still, that was good, as YKWIA was sitting up with his glasses on and a cat on his lap (sans a cup of tea in his hand, at least), totally asleep, which is bad for his neck.  I woke him up, which was good, as he also hadn't taken his medicine before bed.  So I went and peed, he took his medicine, I took some ibuprofen, and I'm waiting for that to kick in.  I wish I could take one of the muscle relaxers, but it's too late.

He is winning the war of dog comfort.  One dog sleeps in the bed.  One dog wishes she did, but she's older and can't get into it, for one, and they were discouraged years ago until the puppy came and melted hearts and was spoilt just a bit.  So the little dog usually sleeps at the foot of my bed (well the side, it's a daybed, so it's complicated, anyway, the short end) on a blanket that's actually a thin comforter/bedspread, so it's comfier than the others, which are fleece.  She also loves a little purple blanket I was given when I broke my ankle, that on impulse I put down on a cold night, because one, she knows it's hers, and two, she can make a pillow out of it.  But the other day YKWIA put an old worn out comforter under the thick fleece blanket in his room.  So just now, despite apparently starting out in my room, she was stretched out on this nice, thick, padded bed.  That, and I may have frozen her out with the fans going, but really it's 62 outside right now and the heat is on because YKWIA is from a desert people and freezes in sub-80 degree weather.  My people, on the other hand, are from a cool, rainy island, and I sweat like a pig in any sort of humid summer day.  He'll actually come up in the middle of winter and hold onto my hands, which generate their own heat or try the back of my neck, and his hands will be like ice.

Okay, it's not really easing up yet (in fact my thumb, which is the focal point of my arthritis, is actually throbbing and referring up the arm), but I think I'll try to go back to bed now.  I'm having trouble opening not only jars but resealable pouches due to my arthritis, or turning certain things.  If I'm like this at 51, that's not a good sign. Typing's uncomfortable too, at least at the moment, and since I do an awful lot of that, it's not good either.  :(

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Random things about this week

  • Sunday we didn't actually play the game.  Brenda came over, and we talked and played The Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game, which was quite fun.  We mostly visited and snacked.  Afterwards, I applied for the second time for a job that had been re-posted from the public library.  I'd love to work there, I'd love to do this particular job, it's a great branch to work in serving a diverse population, and yes, it would mean more money and better financial security.  Keep your fingers crossed for me that at the very least I'll get an interview.  Given my track record of getting nervous and tanking during interviews, cross your fingers again that I'll actually do well on that.  I've got a couple of books on questions to ask and answer and I'm thinking (at a co-worker's suggestion) of running through scenarios with YKWIA, who is a good critic.  The little dog apparently went into the bedroom and harrumphed as she laid down because I froze her out of my room with the fans on, YWKIA told me later.  She's older and gets cold easily.
  • Monday:  I had to shoo a duck out of the driveway to go to work.  She was quacking in an annoyed fashion and walking up to the house when I left.  Work was busy.  I came home, was asleep by 8 or 8:30 pm, and woke up just long enough to take my medicine at midnight.
  • Tuesday:  It was a good day at work.  Either Monday or Tuesday (I can't remember), there was a spectacular car wreck outside our building where someone ran the red light and one vehicle was literally on top of the other.  One person got out on their own, and (I think the one on top) had to be taken out.  Hope no one was seriously hurt.  I came home, had dinner, fed the dogs, and still fell asleep by 7:30 pm and woke up at midnight.  I'm not really sure why I was so tired.
  • Wednesday: I started out the day by accidentally killing either a small rat or a baby opossum by turning on my car engine, which bothered me greatly, but thank goodness it wasn't the neighbour's cat.  It was another busy day at work.  There was a major accident at Alumni and Nicholasville Road that I avoided while taking a co-worker to her car at her boyfriend's workplace.  Despite all that (I do have driving anxiety, after all), I ventured back out and went to the church where the Bluegrass Orchid Society meets, only to wander aimlessly through a very large church wing trying to find it.  I finally ran into some nice ladies who were members of the church, one of whom had the phone number for the president of the society.  Apparently, their speaker came down with pneumonia and they couldn't come up with a replacement programme, so they cancelled it by letting the membership know by phone and posting it on their Facebook page (which I neglected to check, so that's on me).  They may reschedule that talk (on general orchid culture) to a later date.  There is one in May on orchids and viruses.  I may go to that. But kudos to me for speaking up and asking for directions, as I'm shy and don't usually do great at approaching strangers, even nice middle-aged and older women.  That night I checked my account, and I discovered that the treasurer for the state association for health science librarians to which I belong cashed my dues cheque a day early when she said she'd hold it, thereby over-draughting my account. :(  She must have forgotten.  I'm debating if I should mention it or not. I'm sure she would apologise, but it's not going to undo the damage.  The fee was twice the amount of the cheque, which at least was paid by the bank, so I guess that's a bright side. I almost never write cheques because it's harder to track when they'll come out.  I so should have mailed it in.
  • Thursday:  I had a blood draw first thing in the morning and got up early for that.  YKWIA had me move the carcass out of the driveway before I left. I saw a former friend/co-worker there at the doctor's office and caught up with her on what's been going on our lives. Then I went to work and was in physical therapy almost all day learning how to do things so that I can fill in for a woman who's going on maternity leave.  It's a much slower pace but there's a lot of little things to do with many steps that require a good bit of work.  Then I went back upstairs for about a half an hour and caught up on my e-mail and checked out the last patient.  A co-worker went with me to the pharmacy to pick up some medicine YKWIA needed, and then she treated me to an excellent dinner at Planet Thai as a birthday treat.  It was absolutely wonderful.  I had fried tofu (which I adore, although every Thai restaurant I've been to does it differently) and three-flavour (I think that was what it was called) fish, in this case, salmon,  with a medium (3 on a scale of 5) spice.  It made my sinuses run, was very tasty, and was very filling.  Feliz' drunken noodles came in a huge order; I think 3/4 of it had to go home in a box.  We had a good time and talked a lot.  I feel like we're kindred souls.  I'm pretty jazzed from lots of Diet Pepsi, too.  I took her to her car and then stopped by the grocery for bananas.  Now I'm home and I've changed into comfy clothes.  I think I'll listen to some music before bed.
  • Tomorrow should be a calm day at work, a catch-up day (I have about five issues to e-mail about).  I don't really have plans for tomorrow evening. It should be about 76 degrees tomorrow (it was close today), which is remarkable given that we had snow early this week, freeze warnings every night, and frost on the cars in the morning.  As far as my productivity at home, I think I'm falling asleep early to avoid the financial issues I'm having.  I should sit down and work on finances, as my bills are piling up and I'm really not sure what to do about it.  It's like everything's haemorrhaging out.  It's really my main subject of stress. I don't have enough to pay for the preparation of my tax forms, which are sitting at H&R Block, and next week is the deadline for filing--and let's not even get into what I actually owe for my taxes.  I don't get paid for two more weeks.  I'm not sure what to do.  Things are looking bleak.  Maybe YKWIA, who is quite sensible about the management of money, can help me get back on track in terms of planning.  I don't know.  That money could milk money from a walnut.
So anyway, that's what's going on in my life.  It's just a little below average due to the financial woes, which will pass eventually, especially when I sit down and face them head on, which I will do tomorrow and this weekend, for I really don't have much choice.  Avoiding the situation further will only make it worse. :(  Otherwise work and personal life is going well.  So while my emotion tracker on my phone, Daylio, has been set at 'meh' a lot lately, it's not too terrible.  'Good' has to be just around the corner, and 'rad' days will happen, too. Let's try to avoid 'fugly'. :)

Sunday, April 08, 2018

This is kind of interesting...

Kindle readers read novels. Physical book readers read self-help.

Now, granted, this is based on the top 10 sellers of each type in March alone.  There is more diversity in terms of genre in paper format, but each of the top 10 which were non-fiction were what we might call light reading (such as self-help) or in the case of the children's books and Dungeons & Dragons reference manual, heavily illustrated rather than text-intensive (also a reason to read in physical format rather than Kindle--artwork doesn't translate to the traditional e-reader, anyway, not like it would on the Fire, and neither could capture the artwork as well as paper).  The two novels that were on the paper format list were, incidentally, A Wrinkle in Time and Ready Player One, both of which have recently been released as major motion pictures.  Each of the books on this list did have Kindle editions, too.

On the Kindle side, 90% were fiction mainly thrillers.  The one that wasn't was a biography of a murderess in a sensational historical case.

I'll let you draw your own conclusions, albeit from a very small sample.  But I did find it rather intriguing.  I'd like to see the statistics for a year, for example, or say, with the top 100 books in each category over that timeframe.


My orchids at home are getting ready to bloom again (well, a couple of them):

I'm training the stem on this one; it's yellow.  This will be the fourth time it blooms for me.

This one is just sending out a stem.  I'm not sure of the colour; I got two that were on manager's special at the same time, and I don't remember which is which or what colours there were. I think one was white with magenta spots.  Both were pretty, though.
Wednesday there is a meeting of the Bluegrass Orchid Society, with a talk on general orchid culture being given, along with orchids, media, etc., for sale. [I can't afford anything right now, but it's worth a look.]  I'd like to go. It's at 7 pm over in a church on Bellefonte Drive and is free. A late acquaintance was heavily involved in the club; that's how I know about it.  I think I'll finally go.

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Something to contemplate--or, confessions of a (temporarily, I hope) non-reader

When I was a kid, books were my friends. I was an only child.  I didn't feel particularly loved, was starved for attention, and as the youngest in my class didn't make friends easily, especially given that as a military brat, we moved so much.  I love board games, for example, but as a child played my left hand against my right hand because I really had no one to play with, something that now saddens me when I think about it, and it may come as no surprise that in addition to anxiety issues, I probably spent the majority of my childhood, especially my adolescence, clinically depressed.  I excelled at school, because I read so much, and because it was the only way I really felt like anyone cared enough to give me attention.  Over time, I retreated into a fantasy world whose walls were built in books.   Reading transported me to different places, I emphasised strongly with the characters, and as I grew older I surrounded myself with books and ran stories through my head constantly.  I became a librarian partly because of my love of books.  But it took a darker turn.  I hoard books physically.  At the old place, I had something like seventeen bookshelves in a one-bedroom apartment.  I had more books at home than the library I worked in.  I got a Kindle, and collected books on it, hoarding there, too.  For a while I read with gusto, but my 'to be read' pile just kept getting larger, and I began to fall behind.

For a few years now, I've really struggled with reading for enjoyment, and I don't read much at all anymore, which I find incredibly frustrating, as I identify so strongly with being a reader and a librarian, and really, what does it mean when you surround yourself with books, both in professional and personal life, yet never open them? I do better with non-fiction rather than fiction, but even then, I skim a lot and don't read cover to cover.  I even check out books from the library, sometimes for months at a time, and don't read them.  I want to.  I think they sound interesting.  It's hoarding at its finest.  At first, I said, oh, I don't have the time.  That's the problem.  Or, I have trouble deciding what to read next.  That's not it.  My best friend finally explained it to me.

I started coming out of my shell and really expanding outside the walls of my fantasy land in my late-twenties and early-thirties.  I got divorced, got a job I loved with great co-workers, and developed lasting and short-lived friendships as well.  I interact with people here in the real world on a daily basis--and in fact crave it, now, as quiet days at home are hard to deal with, for this historically introverted person.  'Lisa Land' as we call it, home of unicorns and pixie dust and where I can be the princess of my own world, is no more, for the most part.  As such, the walls came down, and I learned to make friends with real people, not just things.  In that sense, I've outgrown books, or rather, what they always represented to me.  I have a similar relationship with food.  Just as food is really there for sustenance, not emotional support, books are there for entertainment and information.  I really need to learn to approach them as they were intended rather than as a treasured friend.  I think that is the only way I will enjoy reading again.  Maybe if I can do that with books (and food), enjoying them for what they are, not the baggage I created for them, then I will love reading.

So, the first step is obviously to consider this and try to approach books in a different way.  I think it best if I sit down and read some every day, even if it's for a short time.  I'm going to start with the books I brought with me (there aren't many, but I chose them carefully), which are in my room.  I will read one fiction and one non-fiction book a day for 20 minutes each.  I will include one library book for 20 minutes as well, so I stop hanging onto them too long.  That's an hour of reading a day and will vary things nicely and take care of various books at a time.  I could just do an hour of reading on one book a day, but I think this will help, and I can always increase the time per section or revise it later.  It's not set in stone.  But I want to do at least an hour each day.  After I finish the physical books here, I can move onto my Kindle (everything else is in storage).  I'm hoping by taking action, by putting it into practice, I can learn to enjoy books for themselves, learn some things, and get back into the habit of reading.

I've done everything else I need to do today except the game notes and look up some financial information.  It's 5:20 pm now.  If I start reading at 5:30, I can read before dinner, eat at 6:30 and feed the animals, and start the notes by 7 or 7:30.  Several books here are language books.  If I add some time for studying I can do that, too, but if I start today, it should be after the notes are finished.  I've found that my thinking is getting fuzzier, lazier.  I think reading and studying will help.


as part of Patient Access week, we were each awarded a certificate in a category based on our coworkers' votes (including those from other departments). Mine was for most creative. Someone must have heard I used to do educational bulletin boards for the hospital. I did do the scramble puzzle we used on Thursday. It was a fun week.