84 entries categorized "Daily life"

This is a good day.

Supreme Court rules same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states.

Beautiful writing from the majority opinion by Justice Anthony Kennedy:

No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.

The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed.

It is so ordered.


Rocking the Bruise Look today

One of the (dis?)advantages of being color-blind is that I tend to dress simply, in solid colors and materials that are easy to match—basically the adult version of Garanimals. I also favor darker colors in general, and a lot of navy, green, and blue in particular.

Today, then, I am an unintentional 6-foot freshly inflicted contusion:

  • Navy boxers
  • Black socks, shoes
  • Dark blue jeans, black belt
  • Navy tee under a black Henley
  • Navy hoodie under a black wool overcoat

This is the result of a few standard clothing items (I always wear black socks) mixed with random grabbing out of the dresser drawers and laundry basket.

Tomorrow I will probably happen to choose brown or green and so will switch to the Healing Bruise look on the holiday, because with the new year comes optimism, or something like that.


Feline meds at the ready

Nightly meds for Flex, my 10-year-old black cat who has hepatitis and diabetes. He’ll be on daily steroid and insulin doses for the rest of his life.

Feline meds at the ready

Steroid on the left: 0.5 mL budesonide in an allegedly chicken-flavored suspension. Flex adores chicken but doesn’t much care for the medicine. And I gotta say, the one time he pulled away as I was giving the dose and it splashed on my lip, chicken was not the flavor note I came away with. But of course I’m not the target audience.

On the right, the U-40 syringe holding Flex’s 1.5-unit dose of ProZinc insulin. (He gets that dose twice a day.) The injections don’t bother him unless I manage to goof on the initial stick—happily, it’s been a few weeks now since a stick made him cry out or twitch away.


Things I remembered just by working from home

In no particular order.

  • I don’t particularly like working from home.
  • Flexie. The keyboard is not your resting place.
  • Drinking one’s own canned beverages? Feh.
  • Alamo!
  • These kitchen-table chairs UTTERLY BLOW for anything more than about 25 continuous minutes of use.
  • Seriously, Flex, go the hell away!
  • Yay whatever music I want to play, at whatever volume.
  • Remote access is simultaneously
    • cool
    • mind-boggling, even if you know at least the basics of the technology involved
    • irritatingly slow
  • Annie: The claws are not required for standing on my leg, ow ow ow ow ow
  • This neighborhood is almost freakishly quiet on weekdays.
  • The sofa, it calls to me....
  • GODDAMNED CATS

When I couldn’t work from home, in the days when my job didn’t offer it (retail is hard to do except at the store) and before the technology was fully baked (hail the days of Citrix on Decker Lake Lane!), I wanted to work from home all the time.

Now I can work from home pretty much whenever I want and I avoid it. I like keeping my home and my workplace distinct and physically separate, too easy to lose work/life balance otherwise. And no cats at the office, which makes it orders of magnitude more productive. Or at least far less cat-hair–covered.

Is this what it means to gain perspective, or (gasp!) to become an adult?


When Girl Scout skills don’t quite cut it

Julie Anne’s efforts to get a fire going in the chiminea met with... difficulty, shall we say:

Firestarter?
The several sheets of newspaper on the lower right was a full New York Times when she started

So I stepped in (at, for the record, her suggestion) with the charcoal lighter fluid.

FUEL TO THE FIRE bwahahahaha
Kids, don’t try this at home!

A couple minutes later we still had the roarin’ fire we sought. Cuz, science!

Flames a-leaping!
No eyebrows singed in the making of this inferno

OH NOES

The iPhone, she is brokeThe phone, she is broke :-(

We joined friends for a matinee of The Producers in Issaquah. I was getting into the car on our way to the theatre when I bobbled the phone in my left hand and it clattered to the driveway for the fourth time I can remember, and this time it gave the unmistakable psht! sound of the glass giving up the fight.

Yay AppleCare+ — we’re waiting now at the Apple Store, University Village for warranty service. Should be all good in the next hour or so.


So this is adulthood?

Twelve-year-old me really really really wanted this morning to watch Seattle City Light deal with the fallen tree a block down the road. The tree went down as a fast-moving storm blew through the neighborhood Friday evening, taking out or cable service and snapping a power pole in the process, and my 12-year-old self was all about gawking at the work to fix the problems because: Ooh! Big powerful machines!!!

Tree down up the streetForty-year-old me knew that if I didn’t mow the damned lawn, it would overtake the house in a matter of hours. It had been three weeks since the last mowing, a combination of weekend plans and bad weather repeatedly delaying the next mow.

Somehow my brain arrived at a perfect compromise: Mow the front yard first!

So that’s what I did, and I managed to avoid chopping off any digits and scalping the turf even though I kept my eyes on the work down the street even more than I kept my eyes on the task immediately at hand.

And how was your Saturday?


Flashbacks?

So today, a couple of things:

On the drive home from work—which was itself unusual, I haven’t driven to work without a specific reason (like after-work plans or errands I need to run midday) in I don’t even know how long—I found myself belting out If That’s What It Takes. Which got me to thinking:

  1. HOW IS IT EVEN POSSIBLE that I know all the words to this song.
  2. Why didn’t I notice what I was singing until the last 30 seconds?

Thank God no one else could hear me in stop-and-go traffic with my windows rolled up, though this kinda shoots that all to hell.

Then for dinner tonight: Fish sticks.

Frozen crunchy goodness.I can’t remember exactly when I last had fish in stick form. I mean, I’ve had fish & chips fairly regularly over the last few years, but that fish is more wedge-shaped or (in many Seattle-area restaurants anyway) random–filet-shaped. There have been other fish entrées in restaurants fairly regularly over the last few years. And I grill fish on a regular basis year-round, mainly because I like to watch the planks burst into flame. But the stick form, they fell out of my life when I was, oh, maybe 12 or 13, and didn’t make another appearance until tonight.

And oh were they good. Crunchy little things, 2 by 1/2 by 1/4 inches. I remember them being much bigger when I was a kid, by which I mean about the same length and width but maybe twice as thick. Also soggier, no matter how long you baked them, but maybe the bigness was cuz I was smaller and now I’m an adult and most things from my childhood seem smaller, like the time I voted at my elementary school and I needed to use a restroom and I thought, good Lord, I’d have to kneel use these urinals.


Jarring

Back to work today for the first time since November 23. Since that day I’ve spent 8 days in the Caribbean (ah, sun/sand/water....) and took a day off for my 40th birthday yesterday.

And now SLAM back to the regular routine. Amazing how quickly the old patterns return:

  1. Alarm at 05:30, didn’t even twitch.
  2. Out the door by 06:00 to the park & ride.
  3. On the bus, 30-minute ride to the office.
  4. Yay badge still works!
  5. Computer set up, time to start Outlook chewing on email updates.

All this and it’s only 07:15. I’ll spend most of today and possibly part of tomorrow filtering through vast volumes of email and other messages and catching up on what happened while I was out.

On the plus side, I’ve a short work week. So the crazy can only last four days.

How’s your Tuesday?


What kind of day has it been

An indicator of how this Monday will likely go:

I required five attempts to leave the house successfully. I believe this is a personal best.

First try: Realized I had forgotten my work badge (and, by extension, my transit card since they’re in the same badge holder).

Second try: Forgot Netflix DVDs for return mail.

Third try: Turned to lock door, determined this would be difficult since keys were still on the shelf inside my apartment.

Fourth try: Halfway down the stairs, remembered my wallet was still on my desk in the living room.

Fifth try: Half a block away, noticed my phone’s charge level was only 63%. Considered returning for the wall charger, remembered I have a USB charge cable on my desk at work.

So then. How’s your Monday?


You can HEAR the anguished wringing of hands

It’s snowing in the Seattle area, which means two things.

  1. Area school districts started announcing changes to their schedules, or outright closures, more than 24 hours ago, at the first hint of snow in the forecasts.
  2. Drivers are freaked the hell out.

The snow is sticking to lawns, roofs, and trees, but it’s barely making the roads wet yet. However, the forecast calls for up to 3 inches of accumulation from Seattle southward by this afternoon.

I am of course in heaven. I was born and raised (and more importantly learned to drive) in Salt Lake City, where men are men and holy underwear is the norm, and where they get REAL snow. Where by “real” I mean in quantities of inches at a time, sometimes a foot or more, and as the license plates will confirm it’s the greatest snow on Earth.

Which means that anytime the Seattle weather forecasts mention snow or La Niña or “Arctic flow” or the other winter-weather flag phrases, I get a little giddy. I remember the years of walking to school uphill in the snow (but one way only) and the inevitable late-night sledding sessions down the block-long alley across the street, including that time Matt almost got crushed by the bus on 6th Avenue but only his sled bit the dust because of his expertly timed ninja dodge maneuver, and the look of utter horror on the bus driver’s face when he felt the bus’s front right tire go over SOMETHING (and probably felt the crunching of the sled’s wood deck) and he had seen a teenager waving wildly on the sidewalk just before that.

Ahh, the memories.

Anyway, back to now. Yesterday we had several brief periods of “snow”—really, it was the hardened version of Seattle’s famous misty rain. You had squint to see it—it made NOTHING wet, not roads, not cars, certainly not exposed skin. Immortalized in a conversation with Julie Anne as we had a late pre-Thanksgiving-shopping breakfast at Original Pancake House in Crown Hill:

Don: Oh look, it’s snowing again.

Julie Anne [squinting]: It is?

Don: You have to really want to see it.

Julie Anne [pause, still squinting]: Oooohh.

Laffs all ’round!

It certainly doesn’t help that the media here in Seattle buy into the frenzy wholeheartedly. KOMO News radio usually switches to their astoundingly lame “driver to driver coverage”: Joe Sixpack calls in on their news line and reports what he may or may have seen, or sometimes what he expects to see, or what his wife’s coworker’s neighbor said she once saw. And somehow the metro area hangs on his every word. Usually delivered all in a rush, because Joe Sixpack is not a professional radio personality and so has no clue about modulation and pace:

KOMO personality: We have Joe from Medina on the KOMO News Line. Joe, tell us what you see.

Joe: Yeah so I was driving on 520 toward I-5 and as I got to Montlake I saw a snowflake and I slammed on the brakes and a semi and a bus behind me almost crashed as they tried to avoid me and I spilled my Starbucks all over the dashboard and now I have to go to the detailer.

KOMO: O...kay, thanks, Joe. Now to Melinda in Shoreline, you have have something to tell us about the power up there?

Melinda: Well our schools are all closed and our power is on, it hasn’t even flickered. But we have about an inch of snow and my driveway is really icy.

KOMO: ...

And so on. It just never ends. I know (or at least I think) they think they’re providing a necessary civic service, but come on.

Really they’re just enabling the cold-weather-pansy mentality.


Rather an unproductive first day

I walked into my bedroom just now with the sole intent of taking my shoes off.

When I walked out of my bedroom, I had opened the blinds and bedroom window, and turned on a fan. I still had my shoes on, which did not register on me until I walked into the kitchen and did not feel Purina Cat Chow gouging my toes.

This little vignette rather well describes my day at work, wherein I accomplished nothing beyond rebuilding a single Dell XPS M1530 laptop four times despite its repeated need to shut down without warning, I believe due to overheating. I would just get to a point where I could do useful work BAM shutdown, leaving the OS installation in a state of chaos it charmingly deems “improper shutdown”—really this is their code phrase for “gaslight the hapless user by making him run the recovery and diagnostics tools repeatedly”—off I’d go again, restore point in place and just get things set up BAM shutdown.

Somewhere in the middle of all that I managed to contribute peripherally to a couple of problem solutions, entirely by overhearing the conversations in our group work area. Though one of those solutions was really just a few ideas toward a solution—no idea if that one panned out, I gave up and left at 14:45 because I needed to call Dell technical support and my cell-phone battery was nearly dead, its charger lying 7 miles away (as the crow flies) on my desk at home.

The actually helpful (!) Dell technical support representative, who gave her name as Rachel in an attempt to induce in me a belief that she was from the upper midwest (most likely somewhere near Indianapolis) despite her obviously exotic accent, took over control my laptop from God knows how many thousands of miles away and rapidly determined that the problem was an old BIOS, along with two general drivers. But then she noticed I was using Windows 7, and the machine I have is supported only for Windows Vista, because her scripts don’t cover Windows 7. She could offer me further fee-based support, she’d be most pleased to do so!, but I opted to end the call and muddle through various BIOS and driver updates myself.

So far it seems maybe it worked. Laptop has been running for three hours now without a single heat-related sudden shutdown. No sudden shutdowns at all, in fact, only the 12 separate restarts required to install all of the OS and driver updates I found. And they don’t count because the installers warned me about ’em each time.

So yeah. Here’s hoping the remainder of the week is a bit more productive and a bit less technical-support-requiring.

Also I plan to wear no shoes.