Place and Perspective

Along the tumbleweed way
I met someone like me.
He drives, sometimes.
Other times, I do.
For now, our son sits in the back,
Eats raspberries,
And sings along with the radio. 

 Next year, we may all be from here,
And if not, then, well, maybe the year after. 

– excerpt from “I’m from everywhere, man…”, a mandatory  ‘introduce yourself to your fellow classmates in the form of a poem’ assignment, circa 2013ish.

Place and Privilege was the original title of this blog post, but it sounded too much like a  Jane Austen reboot.

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C’est là que commence la folie

I’m on Day 73 of my Duolingo streak, and into the second week of my video game boycott.  The boycott isn’t anything political:  I was just parked in a low mental activity rabbit hole1, and I finally had enough sleep to realize that.

With a few exceptions this past month, I have gotten myself moving toward bed around ten at night, and asleep by eleven.  I know it will be a while before I am completely crawled out from under the chronic sleep deprivation, and I keep reminding myself of that, especially when I notice that in general, I’m doing better.  Yes, really.  I am running just a single load of laundry every day. On very good days, it gets put away semi-immediately. It is in no immediate danger of becoming another low mental activity rabbit hole.

I even have “Begin Blog Post” (which was Monday, August 5th) and “Publish Blog Post” (booked for Monday, August 12th) tasks blocked into my planner, just like I had last month.  We’ll see if I get sick of working on this post before the 12th and chuck it over the fence ahead of schedule like I did last month2.

…and obviously, I did not.  It is five minutes until ten on Monday, August 12th, and here I am not really knowing how to finish this blog post other than to say yeah, I can really notice it now when I don’t get into bed by ten, and setting my alarm clock for an hour later to try to compensate for the lack of sleep only makes it worse because I start off the morning feeling like I’m behind and I’m running to catch up all day.

Yeah, I did that last night.  @bhoneydew was in the living room watching the first episode of Another Life when I was heading to bed last night, and I got drawn into the story-based entertainment black hole before I could escape.  I won’t say that I should know better, because I already do know better.

I also am better.  Despite getting up an hour later than usual, I still managed to do everything I had planned to do today — including this blog post.  Boom.


1This sounds better than “place Shai goes to hide”, I think.
2Because it takes a surprising amount of effort for me these days to write anything (work related, non-work related, school related, grocery lists) that doesn’t read like I threw it together on my cell phone while parked in a waiting room.  Our son currently has physical therapy for his ankle twice a week, and I’ve hit the beginning of my fall checkups.

Disconnect and Recharge

I had an accidental vacation this weekend. Since the Monster’s cast is now off, he can swim again, so we drove down to the in-laws’ place on the 4th.

For the first time ever, I forgot to pack the charging cord for my laptop. The day of work I had planned for Friday, and the weekend of unplanned work I had anticipated (yes, really) suddenly turned into except-for-what-you-can-handle-via-cell-you-can-only-work-a-half-day-unless-you-spend-the-rest-of-the-day-driving-home.

I worked until the laptop ran out of juice. I did not drive home. I also canceled a meeting instead of trying to handle it via cell.

I admit I spent more time this weekend than I should have twitching instead of relaxing.  See, last summer when I had scheduled vacation, I wound up spending the first day of it on a marathon conference call and most of the first night doing research and sending emails related to that conference call.  On day two, after I had gotten dragged back into a call as soon as I had climbed into a swimming pool, I gave up and went home just as soon as I could hang up the phone and get out of the water.

Yes, I once did a conference call while standing in a swimming pool. It’s not one of my happiest moments, and certainly not one of my brightest, even if the phone did survive.

I got into the pool this weekend. Let me rephrase that.  I made myself get into the pool this weekend, despite feeling like if I tried to have fun, something would interrupt it.

It did help that I accidentally left my phone plugged into the charger inside my in-laws’ house, and maybe-not-as-accidentally let it have a vacation for the rest of the weekend, while I finished the book I started back in, uhm, March, and started another. I did not make any more dishcloths (though I have made a few more since I last mentioned them), but I did continue with my Duolingo refresher. I’m now on Day 39.

Day 39. I can’t believe it either.

What’s next?  Writing more frequent blog posts? Writing again in general?  Maybe just more dishcloths? Tous ces optimisme me donne le vertige.

Déchiqueter l’inquiétude

This post brought to you by a 25 day French streak on Duolingo.  Yep, I did restart my refresher, and so far, the experiment seems to be working.

Speaking of experiments, I deleted the blog post that was still attracting all of the tedious spam comments.  Editing it, changing its URL, and removing the genuine comments from it just wasn’t helping like I had hoped! I figured I would try shredding the post instead of doing something like, oh, starting up an entirely new blog after we all agreed that this one was wrong and I should be sorry.

I also deleted my LinkedIn profile, which had nothing to do with my spam comment problem, except for being a similar source of unease. I was getting a little creeped out by the increasing number of anonymous viewers, especially since they had been occurring in bursts (perhaps not so) oddly synchronous with some recent work events.

That is about all I can share of what is going on right now, except to say the Monster’s cast is coming off soon, and maybe we will all be a little less crazy here.

Maybe.

Happy Still June!

 

Two Dishcloths Later…

Je crois que mon titre serait “deux torchons plus tard” en français.  I think.  I restarted my Duolingo French refresher as one of my not-really-a-resolution-that-just-so-happened-to-start-around-the-New-Year-nothing-to-see-here-Universe things.  Not that I had a practical reason to restart my Duolingo French refresher, beyond seeing it as a bit of psychic clutter that might finally go away if I finish it, and it’d probably be healthier to finish it than, oh, say, for a completely random example, the Dragonborn expansion of Skyrim.1

Probably.

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Aasymptotic

Once I finish the remaining sleeve, I will have crocheted my first sweater.
– Me, March 27, 2017, “Throw

I haven’t yet finished the sweater. 
– Me, April 17, 2017, “Eighty Percent Chance of Getting Stuff Done

I still haven’t finished the sweater. To be honest, I haven’t worked on it at all.
– Me, May 14, 2017, “Ninety Percent Thresholds

I still haven’t finished the sweater.
– Me, June 23, 2017, “One Hundred Percent Standard Deviations”

Who knows, I might even finish that sweater this year.
– Me, September 2, 2017, “=NVL(Number,24)

The sweater I’ve been working on is still in the bag piled beside the entertainment center, waiting for me to finish that sleeve.
– Me, December 14, 2017, “Escapades in Escapism

The new season of The Orville started on the 30th.  Finding myself without a craft project to work on in front of the television for the first time since football season started, and feeling pretty good about myself for finishing all of the ones I’d planned to get done by Christmas, I convinced myself to fish that sleeve out of the bag piled beside the entertainment center and finish it.

I finished the sleeve, dug out the rest of the pieces, seamed the shoulders together, and…

Uhm.

sweater

The aggressively asymmetrical sweater.

This is supposed to be a “Cozy Shell” that falls at the waist. If I seamed the sides, it would fit me like a caftan, and as you can see here, the absolute shortest the hem gets is mid-thigh.

I can’t remember what I was thinking while I was making this. I’m not convinced I was thinking while I was making this.

I considered blocking the sweater to see if I could straighten it out, but I concluded the only thing that would help is wrapping it around a concrete block and throwing it into a deep dark hole.

Perhaps it will be happier as dishcloths, or a couple of blankets for the hypothetically eventual dog to shed all over and shred into yarn confetti.

On the bright side, now that I know the limit of how badly I can screw up crocheting a sweater, shouldn’t my next attempt be better?


Aasymptotic is my trying to describe being in the opposite state as asymptotic — that is, becoming less precise as a variable approaches a limit, instead of more so.

Hey There

Dear Fellow COMM 390 Students,

If you have found me here, congratulations!  You managed to get to this blog despite my leaving the link out of my introductory post to the class.

Please say hello if you like, or just run away screaming. I’m not one to judge!

-Shai