howeverbrief: (Temp)
Okay, let's do it.

Read more... )

So, that's it. Now maybe I'll be able to update on some of the other stuff that has been happening, since that has seemed like an endless series of distractions. I'll be back soon to talk about that, I'm sure, but thanks for your patience over the last few entries while I've tried to gather my thoughts about this trip. Overall, it was an experience I won't forget. Under all, life constantly gets in the way.

Sigh

Nov. 13th, 2015 11:15 pm
howeverbrief: (Winter)
I had an entry in my head all day. I was writing it pretty much from the moment I woke up with a song stuck in my head. That all seems pretty petty compared to what happened in Paris, though. Over a hundred people dead? Really? What does that accomplish? Unbelievable. Well, given the current political climate, not entirely unbelievable unfortunately. I have no words.

A coworker told me this, though (and yes, I'm paraphrasing, but not by much):
"These immigrants. I'm not a racist. You know, I wasn't raised like that. Every man's my brother. Every woman's my sister. But I don't trust those burka people. You know, they need to be taken care of, and I don't mean in the three meals a day way, you know?"

Good God. You're not helping.
howeverbrief: (Winter)
Me, after looking at an advertisement on the movie marquee: Blood drive is a terrible name for a movie. Wait, that's not what that is.
Mike: Or it's the best name for a movie. *movie voice* Blood Drive. Donors needed.

Uh... guess you had to be there. I'm having some trouble having the right attitude for work, but I'm too tired to go into it again after telling my tale of woe to several people. Hopefully I can get caught up in the right way soon. Yeah, that's basically all I wanted to say.
howeverbrief: (Black)
When I started working for the legislature, I decided I would walk on each of my breaks. This was mostly because I was very afraid of how the "sit all day" office environment was going to affect my health, and this was the only way I could think to counteract that. (I also managed to lose some weight those first few months because I took my diet to the extreme, but that has definitely tapered off since then.)

When my break schedule was set in stone, I noticed that I walk past a lot of the same people pretty much every day. On my lunch break, a man who wears jeans as well as a wide hat to cover his balding head walks in the shade around the governor's building. He has said hello to me a few times and commented on how he walks two miles during lunch! Otherwise, we usually don't make eye contact but just nod and pass. In fact, because of my general introversion, that's mostly what I do while walking because I don't want to get into weird situations with people because I've proven that I'm not good at small talk, even if I'm doing it for a good reason.

In the afternoon, an older couple walks most days, regardless of the weather. A few months (or maybe a year?) into my job, I stopped them and had a brief conversation about how I saw them every day. I don't know what possessed me to do this. They mostly looked at me like I was crazy and kept walking. I reverted back to not making eye contact and didn't attempt to talk to them again.

Obviously I haven't been able to walk very much recently, but I have started to get back out and try to walk on my breaks again, even if I am a lot slower these days. I tend to walk a little more than half of what I used to in the same amount of time, mostly because my foot hurts with each step. Still, the foot doctor says this is the best thing for me to do to get rid of the osteopenia (which, during my last appointment, he said is starting to go away), and it's not as bad as it used to be. It's just harder.

Before my sinus surgery a few weeks ago, I was struggling to walk past the governor's building during lunch, and the man with the hat that I used to walk past every day stopped me and asked why I wasn't walking as well as I used to. I told him what happened with my foot, and with that context, he said it was good to see me out trying.

Fast forward to today, my first day at work post-sinus surgery. I had pretty much convinced myself not to walk on my breaks, and yet I found myself outside on my afternoon break anyway. As I made my way to the sidewalk, I passed the older couple. To my surprise, the man said, "Excuse me."

I looked up, and he said, "It's nice to see you back. We wondered what happened to you."
howeverbrief: (Black)
I keep meaning to update about Utah, but my sinus infection has come back full force (with prednisone completely out of my system and round seven of antibiotics finished on Monday), and I have felt pretty tired and awful. Still, here's a start to that. If I don't end up finishing it in one go (and you're still interested), come back for edits and updates. (Also, if you're friends with me on facebook, you'll have already seen the avalanche of pictures. Haha, oops.)

Read more... )

EDIT: And wow, I think that's pretty much it.
howeverbrief: (Skull)
Hello. I believe last time I updated, I talked about meeting a new physical therapist at PT and how we pretty much got off on the wrong foot (heh). Well, I've been to PT twice since then, and the first time, I told Gary I was on prednisone, and he didn't care at all. He was happy that the swelling was gone and just said to remind him when I wasn't on it anymore in case it comes back. So, after all that, I did a whole bunch of worrying over nothing, per usual. I just feel extra dumb about it because I kept fretting and bugging Mike about it because my stupid anxious mind wouldn't let it go, but it turned out okay.

I also had PT yesterday. Both Gary and Jessica were there, and Jessica was my therapist for the day. She seemed to be a bit more toned down, and since I had already told them about the steroids, I wasn't as worried. Jessica did make a little dig to Gary, saying, "She lost her crutch last time she was in here, and I reminded her to use it," but whatever. It wasn't as bad. I think I understand her general attitude now and can tolerate it, especially if it's going to make me walk. I think part of what they started yesterday is gait training, which should help.

As for the rest of yesterday, I ended up taking the whole day off, something I didn't intend to do because most of the other managers were already off or on vacation, but the manager on duty Thursday said I could because I had a CT scan of my sinuses in the morning (where the radiologist said, "Wow, it is really clogged in there!" ugh) and PT in the afternoon. It did make the whole day easier. Because I had the day off and had to be up early-ish for the scan, I was able to move PT up to 10:00 in the morning and be done with medical stuff by 11:00. I then got a haircut (another thing I've been complaining about incessantly) and shopped a bit at JC Penny's (where I saved $90 or something ridiculous because I had no idea they were having such huge sales until I went in there). After that, we were able to go to a sub shop in town for lunch and then come home and relax for a bit. Since we had plans to meet my sister and brother for Good Friday sushi in Reno for dinner, this worked out pretty well.

Sushi was good, other than my crutch falling into the table behind us where other people were eating (twice, yikes). My sister is still feeling a little sick, but we all stood in the parking lot and, among other things, talked about how I have roid rage and need an intervention and how my dad inexplicably told my sister he likes to put splenda on cheddar cheese. Hmm.

I'm probably forgetting a lot of things, and this entry isn't very cohesive. Sorry. I should probably go move laundry and try to get rid of this headache. Happy Saturday, though! Also Happy Easter if you celebrate. :D
howeverbrief: (Ink)
I've been having very complicated dreams where I only remember creepy details when I wake up.

Night before last, a dude was looking through my purse and said, "Do you wear perfume? This smells amazing."

Last night, I was playing with a cat who was supposed to be Olive (but it was the wrong color and had long hair like my first cat Squeaky), and when I went to mess with her paw, I pulled her whole leg off. I was really upset about it, but my dad put her in a cage and said we'd take her to the doctor next week. Then he talked about how terrible marriage is.

Ugh.

I went to the eye doctor today, and though I didn't get new glasses (I guess my eyesight hasn't changed too far), he did convince me to get prescription sunglasses. I don't know why, but when I was a kid, I always thought having prescription sunglasses was something entirely uncool adults get. (This doesn't actually make sense because my aunt has them, and she's pretty cool. She was always leaving them at our house, though, and maybe I subconsciously really didn't want to lose something that cost so much.) What's weird is I'm kind of excited about getting them anyway. They're going to be a big help when I'm outside all the time again... hopefully when that happens. Later this year maybe?

Looking at you, club foot.

Mike and I went to Del Taco for dinner, Mike in his lay around the house clothes and me in a professional outfit because the finance committee was meeting in the building today. Mike remarked that everyone probably thought he was unemployed and beat me when I got home. Haha, we're not funny. We both enjoyed the food, but the pop music playing in the background was pretty insufferable. (Especially Taylor Swift singing about how it felt like she was 22. You couldn't pay me to be 22 again. Good god, that's when I made my BEST LIFE DECISIONS.) Having this discussion made me feel old, and I agreed with Mike that we should leave before One Direction's you-don't-know-you're-beautiful-that's-why-I-can-rape-you song ended and we were subjected to something else. Mike also remarked that the music was probably meant to get people out as fast as possible. But hey, you know, I'm an optimist.

I'm guessing it won't surprise you that I'm tired. Walking is tremendously difficult, with my ankle and heel screaming at me whenever I step on my left foot, but I have one more day behind me. Hopefully that means I'm getting better. I'll find out more when I go to physical therapy on Monday (since my mom helped me find a place that will get me in then rather than two weeks from now, score). Maybe I'm weird, but I'm actually kind of looking forward to that too. It'll be nice to get moving again. I say that now, though I keep hearing about how painful everything is going to be. Oh well. We'll see how it goes.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
Ah, Mike and his dad are on their way to Sacramento; and my mom won't get here for another couple of hours; so I've got some time to kill. Really, I ought to be doing laundry or something productive but not super tiring, but this is just as well. I don't get a lot of time to just sit and do this anymore.

Mike's dad's flight was delayed through Vegas, so he didn't get into Reno until almost 10, which put them in Carson around 11. We stayed up talking with him for a bit, and when he went to bed, Mike and I talked some more. We didn't get up until 9, and I feel a little bad about that because Brent is on Mountain time and had to be starving by that point. Oh well. We still had a nice little brunch at Heidi's in town, and after that we drove around town to show what little sights we have, haha.

I kind of forget there's more to this town, even after living in it for three years. I think Mike knows the streets better than I do now, but then again, every other year I have about six to eight months where the only places I go are work, the grocery store and home. I suppose that doesn't do much for getting to know a place, even if you were born here and have lived in the area your whole life.

Well, when I put it that way, I don't really have an excuse. For any of this.


I've been listening to these guys a lot recently again. I know I shouldn't have too many regrets about a really great event, but we wanted this song to play while we had our first dance at the wedding. I know it wasn't meant to be, and we couldn't have planned for the DJ to bring the wrong program as well as have a seizure right before the ceremony. Still, that along with not getting proper pictures with my siblings because our photographer didn't really understand us (and I didn't quite know what to tell her because I didn't have enough time to pull that one together) are probably my biggest regrets. It doesn't matter now. What's important is we're together and married. Things worked out somehow, and the future lays before us in a sea of possibilities.

I don't quite know what's next. Of course, I would have never believed this is where I'd end up if someone had told me ten years ago. I guess that's the flipside of not knowing, that there's equal opportunity for the fantastic and the horrible, the incredible and the pedestrian, the fulfilling and the heartbreaking, and everything in between, if not all at once.

I can't say too much or I feel like I'll jinx it. Even saying that is kind of throwing it out into the universe. I'm not asking for anything else to happen. Just saying.

BUT I'll leave you with a word of advice--
If you happen to buy giant microbes for your significant other because you think they're funny, don't leave them hanging around the living room where anyone can find them. Otherwise, you might have a conversation like this with your father-in-law:
"Hmm. Herpes is a weird name for a toy."
"Oh! Uh, yeah. Mono is over there too."

Whoops.
howeverbrief: (Smile)
INSTRUCTIONS: Take the first sentence or two (or a paragraph because I don't always follow the rules) from the first post of each month of 2012. That's your year in review.

JANUARY: Around the first of the year, I always have the year-end meme I've been doing for however long now at the forefront of my mind; so I never really say what happened on New Years because I would rather start off on a good foot journalisticly. I don't know if this ever really works.

FEBRUARY: Session officially starts Monday. I'm going in at 3:00 today and working until question mark. Then I'm going in tomorrow at 11:00 (or earlier depending on how much work we have) until question mark, predicted leave time of after midnight. Monday will probably be an early day as well. Hopefully I get next Saturday off, more so the one after that since it's my anniversary with Mike. Sigh.

MARCH: I was shocked to learn yesterday that I got this whole weekend off. We have to go in at 7:00 on Monday, but they didn't have enough work to have us come in on Sunday. So I texted my mom, and she let the guy who offered to fix my door know that I was free. He's coming tomorrow at 10:00, so hopefully I'll have a deadbolt by the afternoon so I can stop leaving the couch in front of the door, which is a little annoying but necessary for my peace of mind at the moment.

APRIL: April is usually the month where I try to post a poem a day. I am going to go ahead and say I probably won't do that this month. With session being what it is and deadlines looming in the near future, I'm not sure I'll have time to think about poetry in the way I want to. That's just the way it goes, I guess. I'll probably still try to get to it now and then, but it won't be a daily barrage of poetry. I'm sure you're all devastated. Haha. Nah, it's mostly a personal exercise I try to do, but this year doesn't seem very conducive to it.

MAY: It's been a pretty slow week. I've only had six hours of overtime total. Compared to last week, it's a damn vacation. But seriously, it's always hard to go from working that much to barely having anything to do. Sure, I always have projects on the back burner to tackle, but considering my project at the moment is reading statutes that were passed before I was born, I haven't been very engaged in what I'm doing, even if it is better than doing nothing at all. It's either work like a maniac or be bored to death in that job. Ah, even if it's not sustainable, I'd rather just have steady work all the time. Makes the day go by faster, even if it's a long one.

JUNE: I uh... Wow.

First off, there's this. (Link pointed to information about the end of session and the special session we were forced to have. Ugh.)

JULY: On the way back to the hotel after eating at Vernon's Hidden Valley Steakhouse (a speakeasy-themed steakhouse where we had an awkward experience at the bar but a very tasty meal), I had this conversation.

"I think I'm drunk on steak."
"Oh, well I hope not. I wouldn't want to steak advantage of you."

AUGUST: So uh, the big project that I said was going to send us into overtime at work a little before or after the wedding in September? The one I was trying to plan the wedding around because planning a wedding is stressful enough without working overtime?

SEPTEMBER: FIVE DAYS! ZOMG MY BRAIN IS ONLY WEDDING STUFF.

OCTOBER: Hey, we finagled some pictures out of the photographer (that is to say, she was nice enough to put some up for us even though she's said it's going to take two to three months to sort through and edit our pictures); so maybe we can get our thank you cards out soon. I'm pretty excited about that, probably because once that's done, I can stop thinking about how ungrateful we are... haha.

NOVEMBER: I'm doing okay. The surgery went well, and I've been mostly taking pills, eating, watching TV, and falling asleep while watching said TV during the day. Mike's been really sweet and helpful over the last two days, and I'm very grateful he's around. It hasn't been too bad considering. I haven't even really taken all the pain pills I could have, though I'm still taking a bit too much hydrocodone for my liking (mostly because it's making me very sleepy and dizzy and I'd like to get away from that soon). I take the recommended doses during the day and let it lapse at night so I don't have to get up any more than I already do when I'm supposed to be sleeping. Seems to be working out fine.

DECEMBER: Ah, okay. I got back from Utah yesterday, and Mike left for Livermore soon after. I have an entry on our Thanksgiving weekend, but it can wait until I'm less tired (which hopefully isn't too long from now or I'll never get it done). I also feel like I'm getting sick, but I'm hoping that's just a combination of hypochondria and my teeth still being messed up, though my new nephew and niece were both sick the whole time I was there (boo). I'm taking Cold-eez just in case, for whatever that's worth.

It's been quite the year. I'd say more, but I'm currently visiting New Mexico until the first. Hopefully 2014 will get rid of this obstinate sinus infection, but we'll see. Other than that, it hasn't been too bad lately. I hope you're all doing very well. Sorry for not keeping up better. I'll try to work on that this coming year.

Old

Dec. 26th, 2013 01:38 pm
howeverbrief: (Skull)
Before I get into everything else I should update about, a brief story.

After I got out of urgent care on Monday, Mike and I went to Red's Old 395 Grill for dinner. We had a nice time, with him getting a smoked sausage pizza and me with a pulled pork sandwich with onion strings. It was one of the better times I've had there, and at the end of the meal, the waiter and I had this conversation:

Waiter: "I have to ask you. Do you have a daughter?"
Me: "No."
Waiter: "Really?"
Me: "Yeah, really."
Waiter: "Because you look just like this girl my friend is dating. I swear to God, just like her."

Our waiter offered to serve us alcohol when we came in, so he had to be at least 21. Blah.
howeverbrief: (Black)
On the way back to the hotel after eating at Vernon's Hidden Valley Steakhouse (a speakeasy-themed steakhouse where we had an awkward experience at the bar but a very tasty meal), I had this conversation.

"I think I'm drunk on steak."
"Oh, well I hope not. I wouldn't want to steak advantage of you."

The rest of the weekend? Very enjoyable (despite the problems we had with reservations), but I'll talk about that another time.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
Me: Kiki! Bossing is hard!
Kiki: *Stares*
Me: I don't know how you do it!
Kiki: *Licks shoulder*
Me: Are you Tony Danza?
Kiki: *Tilts head*
Me: Hold me closer, Tony Danza?
Kiki: *Leaves room*
Me: What, is that not your jam?

Uh... anyway.
howeverbrief: (Black)
"What toothpaste are you?"

One day you find out,
after all those years of believing otherwise,
you squeeze the toothpaste from the
middle, and fool yourself later by
squeezing the remains to the top.
You stand motionless, wondering
what this says about your life--
while life continues to flow around you
unabated.
-November 7, 2012

Last month, while riding with my mom and listening to the radio, she turned to me and said, "Aw, I love this song. When I was a teenager, I always wished for a love like this. I wondered if it would ever be possible for someone to love me like that."

I had no idea what to say. I've never felt that way.

I don't remember pining for love as a teenager. Even before that, I don't remember playing wedding as a kid. From a young age, I remember other girls my age talking about dresses and flowers and what-not, but the closest I ever got to that was pairing up my stuffed animals. No matter what, my animal friends always had companions. They were either friends with the other animals or in heterosexual, monogamous relationships in my head. I never really thought about any of them being married, but they were never alone.

Then again, I was kind of a weird little kid.

By extension, I never really worried about dating as I got older. Sure, I had some crushes on certain guys as a teenager, but they were always short-lived and easily forgotten. The few relationships I had in that period, which were all dysfunctional, ended up being very similar. I fell into them because it seemed like something I should be doing rather than having any genuine interest. Hell, my first kiss was with this dude in the backseat of his friend's car, and it didn't even occur to me that that was a possibility. I was mostly there so my sister wouldn't be alone on her date with some guy she met on the internet. He decided we were dating after that, and I wasn't terribly broken up when he left me a few months later for refusing to sleep with him. So it goes.

What I remember more is throwing myself into school and being completely consumed by angst. If I thought about love, it was more in the context of melodramatic songs about depression and heartbreak rather than wondering if anyone would love me. I didn't like songs about endless love or how much someone couldn't live without someone else or all that other popular dreck. No, I listened to minor tones and anything dark and melancholic in those days (and I still tend to gravitate toward this kind of music and find it hard to express myself though any positive and straightforward love songs), maybe because it was easier for me to dislike myself as a whole rather than wonder what parts of me weren't good enough for other people to like.

Really, finding love wasn't as important to me then, probably because I felt like I had all the time in the world. What mattered was getting a stable life, being successful and knowing I could live comfortably no matter what. For some reason, though I truly hated myself back then, I felt like love would find me later, and preferably after everything else was settled. Even if I couldn't picture the rest of my life or how I'd ever meet the person I would fall in love with, I had some naive faith that it would happen somehow. I put it out of my mind and went about my life, confident that it would be beautiful and perfect when it came even if I wasn't anywhere close to it.

Oh, was I ever wrong about that.

By the time I actually fell in love, it was a disaster. College hit, and I didn't hate myself quite as much. Then out of nowhere love hit me over the head, dragged me around for a few months, then left me for dead. (Okay, so I still have a flair for the melodramatic.) After that sort of experience, I wasn't the same. I don't think anyone really can be. Still, my point is it was only after getting my heart broken that I had any sort of fear that I was not enough and that no one would love me, and this left me with an anger I never quite acknowledged.

Through time, I healed somewhat and threw myself into other relationships. I had a companion, but it didn't work out. I tried again with my first love with similar results. I waited for a while and found love again only to have it collapse years later after on and off bullshit.

But I'm not here to talk about my history. What I've realized is a lot of what I've been yearning for throughout those relationships is a return to stasis. I desperately wanted to go back to feeling like I would be successful and find love again even if it seemed impossible. Though I enjoyed being in relationships, I also pined for my younger self, if only for her belief that things would work out no matter what I did. I wanted to be loved, but I also wanted to go back to being ignorant, to believing that I was the only person who could hate me, even if that was pretty unrealistic. Even if it meant I was still alone, at least I knew I wasn't going to walk out on me.

What I didn't understand is what I really wanted all those years was to be able to get back to that earnest feeling that I was enough. I wanted to be able to go through life feeling like love would happen again, and even it didn't, I'd be okay. Either way, it would work out in the end. In the middle of everything else life had to offer, I wanted stasis. I wanted it all back, but I also wanted myself.

I think that, while I've had periods of being single, I didn't take enough time to appreciate myself and come back to that sense of stasis between relationships when I was younger. However, I've also come to think that perhaps I was remiss in thinking that sort of stasis was impossible within the context of a relationship. Perhaps I only thought this because it takes a lot to maintain stasis, and it's really easy to become complacent and forget to appreciate who you are and what you have, even if it's not ideal. Sometimes it takes a horrifying event to jar you our of your normal day-to-day life and remind you to take care of yourself, but that's not necessarily something that happens only when a relationship ends (and doesn't have to be something terrible either). Maybe being aware of this sort of thing and being okay with yourself regardless is enough. Maybe having faith that things will work isn't so naive after all. Maybe lots of things are still possible.

I really don't know. I've tried writing this entry so many times, and it's still not quite right. This is something I'm feeling out for lack of a better phrase. Really, it's probably one of those things I'll never figure out. Still, I am hopeful and open, and I'm happy with myself and where my life is going and who I'm with. Right now, that's good enough for me.
howeverbrief: (Default)
I like to ask anyone who waits on me in retail positions if they have a lot of time left in their shift. While I'm not necessarily the best at talking to strangers, this question is usually well-received, and I can have a nice little conversation without feeling too weird about it. This isn't always true, though, as evidenced by the conversation I just had with the checker at Trader Joe's--

Checker: "What are you doing today?"
Me: "Just this."
Checker: "Yeah? Just shopping at Joe's?"
Me: "Yep. This is my last stop of the day before going back home to do nothing. Long day ahead?"
Checker: "On Sunday and Monday I work three jobs. I've been here from, oh, seven this morning, and I'll be working until midnight."
Me: "Oh, wow. I don't know how you manage. How do you do it?"
Checker: "Well, it's necessary. Have to make ends meet. What I went to college for no longer exists."

Oh. Sorry, checker lady.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
I occasionally write in my paper journal still. Not nearly as much as I write here (which also isn't much of anything lately), but I thought I'd post it here too, slightly edited.

I watched a program (this program for those who are curious) that detailed the story of a mathematician (George R. Price) who, upon learning of evolutionary theory applied to social behavior, subsequently discovered a theorem that proves altruism is a trait strictly devoted to survival. The theorem was published, but then the man was so disturbed by the thought of altruism being driven by self-interest that he set out to prove it wrong by attempting to live a completely selfless life. Upon finding no way to prove or disprove such selflessness as being connected to any sort of egoism (as it was nearly impossible to prove such motivation even if it appears altruistic on its face), the man committed suicide.

It's an interesting paradox. On the one hand, it makes sense. You do good things to better your surroundings or make yourself or someone else feel good or whatever else, and it all leads back to self-interest. Even if you die saving someone else or perform another incredible act of bravery, it means genes live on (and you or your family reaps the rewards of such "kindness", thus helping their survival too). You've snuffed yourself but offered someone else's genes survival. On the other hand, it renders human kindness into a cold, calculated evolutionary goal, as if every nice thing you or anyone else has done is really all a ploy to make sure we all live to see another day in one form or another. It's a hard pill to swallow even if it does make sense-- a depressing take on what human beings really are at their core even if they think of themselves quite differently.

It made me think of the divide between free will and determinism, which I haven't parsed in some time, probably because it's another impossible riddle. In terms of religious tenets, it appears ludicrously hypocritical to me to imagine an all-powerful creator who also managed to impart free will on all us lowly subjects. It goes back to the silly question of a God being so all-encompassingly powerful that he can make a rock even he can't lift. It's ridiculous but also a fitting image for these issues of the mind and heart. If an all-powerful being set everything in motion and knows everything we're going to do before we do it, how is it possible that we are responsible for anything we do? In such an extreme, we have absolutely no power over what fate has thrust upon us, only that we're alive. On the other hand, free will breeds responsibility through choice in a system that is not pre-determined. On the contrary, it is chaotic and connection-less. Our actions have consequences, and we can effect change for good or ill. In such a system, we can't help but order (or mess up) our own lives and hope that somewhere in that chaos, we arrive at the right place. (Then again, the champion of free will theory was Sartre, and from what I've read, that guy was an asshole.)

Neither extreme is satisfying, but no one has come up with a foolproof theory concerning the middle ground of soft-determinism-- that heady divide between the two where free will works either inside a system of determinism or hand and hand or who knows how (that I know of anyway; I admit to being behind on current arguments in this realm). All I know is it's an interesting (if not frustrating) question. I suppose altruism is a different paradox, but that's what it reminded me of-- another problem I have no solution to.

...

On a different note, I got my hair cut today. I had a conversation with the woman cutting my hair that went something like this:

"What do you do?"
"Oh, I work for the legislature reading legal documents."
"Oh wow, like, all day? I couldn't do that. My eyes start burning when I read."
"Yeah, pretty much all day. Session is coming up, so that'll be interesting again. Lots of hours."
"Session?"
"Yeah, like where they pass all the bills into law."
"Oh, well do you get paid by the hour? That probably makes it worth it. People think I'm making it up when I say my eyes start hurting when I read, but it's true."
"Oh yeah, it definitely happens to some people, I've heard."
"Like my mom thought I was always making excuses, but it's true! Especially now that I'm out of school, it's a little easier for people to believe. It's funny though, because reading makes you smarter. My dad reads all the time and knows like five languages."
"Wow."
"Yeah, I wonder sometimes how we can hang out because we have nothing in common. Then again, when I was a junior in high school, I got really into reading those stupid Twilight books, like, read all of them really fast, and my GPA was a 3.8 where before it had been a 2.5. Kind of crazy."
"Yeah."

Not that I'm slamming this woman. She was really nice and good at cutting hair (also seemed really young, though that just might be me feeling old), but wow. Just wow.
howeverbrief: (Default)
Comment to this post, tell me you want to do the meme, and I will pick five things I would like you to talk about. They might make sense or be totally random. Then post that list, with your commentary, to your journal. Other people can get lists from you, and the meme merrily perpetuates itself.

tabular_rasa gave me these:

Seasons
Let's see. I think every season has its good points. Winter has hot chocolate and is compatible with my indoor hobbies (knitting particularly). Spring has thunderstorms, flowering trees, and general "newness" that comes along with warmer weather showing up again. Summer has vacations and my birthday. Fall has Halloween, falling leaves, and cooling weather.

I find it interesting that my favorite seasons have shifted as I've gotten older. I used to love spring the most, but that was before I realized what weird weather it brings to Nevada the other 90% of the time we don't have thunderstorms. I used to like winter and snow a lot more when I didn't have to drive in it and worry about how cold I was going to be constantly. Summer is okay for the most part still, though I never seem to schedule enough time off and have problems figuring out how to connect with other people without our schedules conflicting. Underneath it all, fall has risen to the top of the heap, with my favorite foods, holidays, and weather happening all at the same time. Still, it doesn't last. All good things must come to an end until next year.

And my mom likes to talk about there being a season for everything. She mostly says this when something bad is happening or a relationship that was once tight is waning. I think about that a lot these days.

Children
I like children. For someone who used to go around saying she'd never have children, I actually enjoy being around them a lot (when they're being cool, that is). I used to babysit quite a bit when I was in high school (a couple times for a family with five kids even!), and it made me feel old to hear that one of the kids I babysat for back in the day graduated from high school last month. Ouch!

Anyway, yeah. I really liked babysitting because it gave me a chance to be around kids without being completely responsible for them. (Hey, I was in high school.) Plus kids are pretty hilarious most of the time and see the world completely differently-- like some magical wonderland full of possibilities where we can get kind of stuck seeing the mess on the floor and the alarm clock going off early in the morning along with the rest of the crap we have to deal with. They remind me of my own childhood, which was pretty neat for the most part, and it's cool to be able to teach things and expose little people to well-worn concepts and see them be amazed and fascinated by them.

I was never one of those girls who sat around thinking about how many children to have with an eventual husband. The rare times I did, it came down to a logical argument with myself concerning population, which lead me to think that the most I'd have is two (though that made me sad because if my parents stopped at two, I wouldn't be who I am nor have the family I have today). Aside from that, I didn't really think about potential names or anything like that except in terms of what I thought would be funny-- stuff like "Fritz" and other weird things I can't remember now. This is probably because my siblings and I all have weird very Irish names, and I thought if I were to name anyone, it would have to be something fairly uncommon. Other than that, I don't know. I've since opened my stance on having children to, "Open to and depending on what my partner wants out of life." I feel like my biological clock should start ticking any minute now, but what's the rush? It'll happen if it's going to happen.

Airplanes
I've been flying since before I was born! My parents and older sister traveled to Ireland for a month when my mom was pregnant with me, and my family traveled a fair amount since. Even as a really small child, I loved the sinking feeling in my stomach I'd get when the airplane first leaves the ground and was never afraid of flying even though I'm still semi-afraid of heights. I never really understood that one. Give me a window seat, and I'll be content to stare out of it for most of the trip unless it's a red-eye flight and/or over 13 hours long. Those kind of really suck, but the destination is usually worth the hassle.

Also, hey, I'll be on a plane to Albuquerque soon! Sweet. ;)

Cooking
I'm surrounded by good cooks in my family. My sister is a pastry chef, and my mom is a dietician by education who helped launch three restaurants in the context of the casino business. Me? I like cooking, but I can't say I'm particularly gifted at it. I have a few things I can make fairly well, and I'm exploring new dishes when I'm not too lazy to cook, which is most nights. On those nights, I have a lot of shortcut dishes I make which border into trashy territory, but whatever. I haven't gained a million pounds yet, so I must not be doing too badly.

Video games
I like and loathe video games. I've played them since I was about seven years old, when my dad bought our first computers. Back then I liked games where I could learn things, like Number Munchers and most games from these guys (my favorite being Treasure Cove! OMG!). My parents were pretty big on educational games for obvious reasons, but we liked them too. I thought certain other games were fun, like Jazz Jackrabbit and the original Duke Nukem, but I was never very good at any of them.

The terrible part about video games is they bring out my competitive side, and playing against other people is usually a recipe for disaster because no matter how much I practice, I don't seem to get any competitive edge. Couple my desire to play well and win with my general inability to actually play these kinds of competitive games well and anyone talking about how much better they are than I am if I lose badly, and you'll end up with me in a very pissy mood. I hate how dumb I can get about that sort of thing, so I try to avoid that as much as possible. If anything, I play more non-competitive games, like puzzle games or The Sims, instead, though I haven't been doing that much at all due to lack of time lately.

Funny story: I guess my parents also bought us a Nintendo game system around that time (or maybe when I was younger) for Christmas, and I was snooping around in the closets before then. I saw the Nintendo box and came out to tell everyone about it.
My mom turned to me and said, "You didn't see that."
I apparently said, "No? Erase, erase, erase," while waving my hand in front of my face.
It must have worked because I didn't remember it, nor did anyone else, until we discovered the Nintendo in that same closet sometime during my high school years.

Whew! Okay. Life is pretty filled to the brim with happenings right now, but I don't want to deal with it here at the moment. I'm sure this will change soon, but you know, that's probably enough given my near-perpetual sleepy state these days. Happy longest day of the year. I'm going to go watch tv and chat before I have to go to bed. Sounds like a plan to me.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
As you might have gathered from my previous post, I stayed up way too late last night despite being exhausted. This lead me to forget that my dad might stop by in the morning to pick up the portable coffee maker my mom left behind. Low and behold, I got a phone call from my dad at 9:45 asking me if I was awake. Ha, whoops?

Well, we ended up going to breakfast at a dinky restaurant down the street, which was actually pretty pleasant. The conversation didn't stray far into politics (thank bog) but rather stayed fairly consistent around Ireland and old family stories. Stuff about his childhood (catching razor clams), first being in America (how a kid who was bigger than him took an eye dropper full of ink and sprayed it on his khakis, "And I wasn't going to take that! So I challenged him, and he was bigger than me!"), and the path his dad (a plumber, welder, and boxing champion) took to immigrate to the U.S. (a much more complicated story than I had heard before; apparently, he could have ended up in Canada and never met my mom).

My dad told me this story:
"Yeah, I used to ride my bike everywhere. My car broke, so I had to. You know, on some days, my dad would take me to work because, well, they were staying with me at the time. Anyway, on most of those rides, we wouldn't really talk because I was never really all that close to my father. Well, one day when it was raining, we pulled up to a light, and out of the blue, you know, out of nowhere, he turned to me and said, 'You know, your mother can't cook.' Haha! So I feigned surprise and said, 'Oh?' Trying to elicit a response. He went on to tell me a little more. I mean, my mother was a very educated woman. She was educated as a secretary, so she never knew how to cook. After they came back from their honeymoon, you know, my aunts lived down the street from her. So after my father left for work, she went to my Auntie Kit and asked what he liked to eat. She said, 'Steak.' So they went and got a steak, you know, a roast that would last for a few days, and she told my mother how to make it. Well, we had a really old turkish stove, and my aunt forgot to tell her to open the flue, so you know, the heat could actually get into the stove. So my father comes home after a twelve hour day, ravenously hungry, and of course, she goes to pull it out of the stove, and the meat is completely raw. And here he was, fifty years later, still talking about it."

These are the times I wish I knew how to ask the right questions. I get so wrapped up in avoiding politics and other topics that I forget there's still so much I don't know about him. Oh well. Such is life, I suppose. I'll take what I can get.
howeverbrief: (Smile)
"Spring Cleaning"
Dear organic peanut butter
sitting unused and expired in the
fridge

I remember how, when I saw you in the market
your glass jar and odd separated contents
seemed like such a good idea
being organic
free of preservatives
natural and all

But now, as I'm trying to dig out
the last of your caked on remains
I'm contemplating chucking you and the
whole sordid mess in the trash
recycling and the environment be damned
if it means I don't have to fight with you anymore

I think I just described
every failed relationship
I've ever had
-April 5, 2012
howeverbrief: (Skull)
I had a nice day with my brother yesterday. He called on Friday night looking to come to Carson and, as he put it, "Go out," but I explained to him that I really don't do that sort of thing here... In fact, I don't really know the majority of this town because I have little or no reason to go to restaurants by myself or travel to the other side of town because I have everything I want to look at within maybe a two to three mile radius. Besides, I hardly drink at all anymore. I know I've mentioned that a fair amount recently, but it's strange to me given how much I used to. I don't know. I never was one for going out on the town even when I drank more. That only happened if someone convinced me it would be fun or I was really drunk already, probably because I can't stand most bars and being around crowds.

Anyway, since that was out, we made plans for him to visit in the afternoon instead. So, he came down around 11, and we went to Olive Garden for lunch. There we talked about a lot of things but mostly about how people are way too addicted to their smartphones and how technological advances are kind of ridiculous. Also, my brother ordered some shrimp pasta dish and a raspberry lemonade, and I ordered some beef dish and an iced tea, which made the waitress laugh and look at us funny. Got to keep them guessing, haha.

After that, we were way too full, so we walked a tiny fraction of lunch off on the bike trail near my house. In retrospect, I should have worn better walking shoes and/or ditched my long socks because the soles of my feet were really sore by the time we got back and my socks kept falling down. Also, I had previously thought the trail was around three miles long round trip (from timing how long it takes me to walk half a mile and extrapolating from there), but while we were walking, I saw someone had marked various distances on the other side of the trail from "Go!" to "2 miles." Huh. I guess it's longer than I thought!

When we got back, my brother had brought along this version of Trivial Pursuit. I liked it a lot more than the original version of Trivial Pursuit actually-- same silly trivia questions, but it takes a lot less time to play, you can choose the topics, and you can bet on whether the other person gets the question right or wrong. Pretty fun!

I also got suggestive hot sauce in the mail (reading the description is making me afraid it'll melt my face off, yikes!) and had a long, silly conversation about it and other things that lasted until it was time to go to bed. Excellent! ;) I woke up this morning feeling really shitty, though. Sniffly, my ear's clogged, and I've got some horrorshow cramp in my right side that's making it difficult to stay upright. (Also made myself dizzy trying to clean out my ear, bonus!) I had plans to clean the house, wash the car (though it looks gloomy out now), and go grocery shopping, but that might get cut down to the bare essentials I need to coast through the week if this doesn't get any better. The other first reader is in Hawaii for the next two weeks, so it'll be pretty bad if I get sick now.

Okay, I should probably try to get whatever I can done now. Just wanted to say I had a good time yesterday. Hopefully whatever this fake illness is will be temporary and I'll feel lame for complaining later. Yep, that sounds about right. It's almost noon. Time to face the day.
howeverbrief: (Black)
Had an okay day. Went by pretty quickly, which is good for a Tuesday.

And it's the end of January! Hooray! Also, what the heck happened? This month felt way too long for its own good, let me tell you. Or, uh... Since I'm not going to explain why, I guess I'm not really going to tell you? I don't know. My parents' birthdays are at the end of January, and that's good. Not much else happens (or has happened) that I'm super stoked about, though. Good riddance for now.

But anyway, a story from work!
Carrie (one of the second readers) came up at the end of the day and said this:
"So my son messaged me saying he had a job interview and was going to wear his jeans, you know, nice jeans but still jeans. I told him to consider wearing his khakis. He said they were wrinkly. I told him to iron them, and he said he didn't have an iron. I told him to find a girl to do it, and he said no. Okay, whatever. Then he sends me this picture of his khaki pants under a box with a weight on top."

Hahaha. I wish I had the picture to show you. Genius.

Pretty productive night otherwise. Apparently talking on the phone makes me productive! Or... something. Got a tax form printed (and now I think I have everything to send to the accountant maybe? aside from the random stuff that was sent to Reno, still have no idea what that is or why it wasn't sent here) and I finally sent out my voter registration update form (a year later, oops). Maybe I'll be able to vote nearby instead of driving out to Smith like I've done for the last eight years. Ridiculous.

Not too shabby. I think that's it. Catch you all in February!

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howeverbrief: (Default)
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