Movable Type 3.2
January 21, 2010
What happened to "Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet..."?
Didn't the post office used to pride themselves on delivering in any weather? When did this change? In my town, at least, the official policy seems to be that they won't deliver if they have to GET OUT OF THE CAR. This seems a tad ridiculous. I'm not even asking for delivery WHILE it's snowing. Just after. The past two mornings, I have shoveled the space in front of my mailbox. Then, before the mail comes, the town plow comes along and piles up more snow right there. So I don't get my mail.
Now, I understand that some circumstances might actually make it dangerous for mail carriers, but this isn't one of those. I'm short, and I can reach my mailbox just fine by standing in front of the little pile of snow. No climbing into the snow required. But I guess they can't quite reach it from the car window, so I don't get my mail. GAH. (This, of course, means that I have to go to the post office to pick it up, and do they have hours friendly to people who work office jobs? No, no they don't.)
April 29, 2007
Not a Good Day
Yesterday was patently Not a Good Day. But it was also a day in which I realized just how wonderful my friends are, and so I ended the day feeling lucky and grateful as well as sad.
The plan had been simple: do homework all day, basically. Maybe take a break to work on my resume or find my summer clothes. But pretty much just homework. (My final presentation is a week from Tuesday.) But. Just as I was getting started, the kitten started scratching the sofa, and I reached for the spray bottle, and somehow between the two of us my mug of coffee ended up spilling directly onto my laptop. I flipped it over and shook it out, and started to panic, because, in addition to needing it for all the homework I'd planned to do that day, my laptop held the only copy of the assignment I'd finished the night before. (I know, I know.) Becoming suddenly computerless in the last week of my last semester was not really a viable option.
So I called a friend who knows things about computers (which is pretty much the understatement of the year) and he told me to bring it over in the afternoon. (In the morning, I got a rather surprising amount of work done, considering I was computerless.) The verdict: apparently I am very, very good at getting lots of coffee into my computer. Especially my hard drive. But he got the hard drive out and copied over my files, so the scariest issue was resolved. Then he gave the computer a bath in distilled water, which was rather amusing to watch. (Pictures are forthcoming.) His wife gave me tea and poundcake and we knit and talked while the various scary computer surgeries were going on. The computer is still in pieces at their house, drying out for a few days. I am currently using a spare laptop they let me borrow so I can at least finish out these assignments without worrying too much. They were both amazing, and I don't know what I would have done without them.
And then I got home, and got the loaner computer working, and was starting to feel better about things, and my father called. As soon as he said "Hi, Katie," I knew someone was dead or in the hospital, because he's my dad and I know that voice. It was my uncle, Tony, my maternal grandmother's brother. He had had a heart attack in his driveway that afternoon and died. I know it shouldn't have been shocking - he had to have been in his 80s, because my grandmother is almost 80 and he was older - but I was shocked anyway. And extremely sad. I know "great-uncle" doesn't necessarily sound so close, but he had been one of my favorite relatives since I was little. I've always been close to his wife, as well.
Of course, that also meant that I didn't care about the timing or it being the last week of school - I had to go to Florida for the funeral. After a few minutes of panic about homework and travel arrangements, I started looking up fares and coming up with various plans. As I was beginning to realize that it would be both more affordable and logistically easier for everyone involved if I just traveled with my parents, a friend pointed out that she lives near the airport my parents use, and offered to let me crash at her place before and/or after my flights, and to drive me to/from the airport so I didn't have to pay for airport parking.
So. I'm sad and things are chaotic and I still don't know what days I'm traveling or how I'm going to get everything done or if I'm going to have a usable computer at the end of it. But boy, do I have awesome friends.
April 18, 2007
I live in an old house in the middle of the woods. I am used to the occasional mouse. I can usually deal: I leave traps in a few of their favorite spots; I'm careful in the kitchen and make sure I wash anything I'm unsure of before using. I don't like it, but I deal.
Tonight was different. Tonight Dewey found his first mouse. But he didn't kill it. (That I could have dealt with.) It got away. And I'm not sure where it went. Or how hurt it was. I am hoping against hope that it wasn't very hurt, and got outside. Or that if it did die somewhere, I find it before too long. I keep thinking I see it out of the corner of my eye. I'm not sure I'll be able to sleep. The kitten is still pretty freaked out, too.
I must say that it's at times like this that I'd give almost anything to have Defulct back... or, honestly, just someone else in the house. I like living alone, much of the time. Except when I really really don't.
October 11, 2006
This is why I need to get married.
I came home from class at 11pm tonight to find a badly-leaking roof and a dead mouse (in a trap) in my silverware drawer.
(Or maybe I just need Defulct back.)
UPDATE: The mouse has been disposed of (along with the trap, I must admit). Aren't you proud of me?
July 31, 2006
Isn't it naptime?
I thought I was recovering decently from the Blogathon, especially as I slept well last night. But this afternoon I have a horrible headache, and I'm exhausted. Ack. I am very very tempted to e-mail out sick from class. But it's the last meeting of this class. (Nothing to hand in or anything, though.) And the professor's really great and a good contact to have in my field, so I don't want to end on a bad note. And last week he said "Don't any of you who presented tonight think that means you don't have to come on Monday."
But falling asleep driving is no good either. I don't know what to do.
UPDATE: Headache was getting worse and worse, even with ibuprofen, so I e-mailed the professor and told him. Driving an hour, into the city, exhausted and with a piercing headache just doesn't seem safe. Neither does driving home like that at 10pm.
July 18, 2006
Please send snow.
You know how hot it is? It's so hot that...
... you take a shower and feel almost human for a minute, and then you get dressed and by the time you're brushing your teeth you realize that you're already drenched in sweat again.
July 11, 2006
Breathe in. Breathe out.
I don't even know where to start.
Actually, I do know where to start: I know that I write at least one of these posts per semester. I know it'll pass. I know I always get through it. But knowing all this isn't really helping at the moment, so I need to write it all again anyway.
This semester is killing me. Conventional wisdom says summer is supposed to be easier or lighter or more fun, right? Tell that to the people who run my school. Regular semesters are, I don't know, twelve or thirteen weeks, I guess. Classes meet once a week for three hours. (I take evening classes, so they're all 6-9.) But the summer semester is only six weeks or so, which means that classes meet twice a week. For me, that means that two days a week (Monday and Wednesday right now), I leave work a little early to drive for an hour and then take the subway to campus, go to class, and then reverse the commute. I'm lucky if I get home by eleven. I've usually had some caffeine and/or sugar to help keep me awake for the drive, so I can't fall asleep right when I get home. I end up getting less than six hours of sleep most of those nights.
And since I leave early twice a week, I have to make up the time. So I generally work through my lunch breaks, and try to get to work a little early and stay a little late on other days. Not a big deal, but it adds to the general feeling of "Aaaagh!"
Of course, more frequent class meetings aren't the only result of the summer schedule. It also means way more work, because all the work from the whole semester class is crammed in. The reading never ends. Things are due and then all of a sudden more things are due. This class is really, really interesting but I feel like I'm working so hard just to keep up that I'm not really getting as much out of it as I could.
So that's the class-related stress. There's other stuff that adds to it. Work is generally bleh, and we have a new person starting next week and I'm training her, and this is the person that my boss basically told me was "smart like you but with a better personality." Um, thanks. And it's hot out, which means I have trouble sleeping. And my roommate is moving out soon, which throws me off on a number of levels. I think I'm ready to live alone for a while, so I'm sort of looking forward to that, but also nervous, and he's moving far away and I'm going to miss him. And he's sort of been in the process of moving for a while now, which is both physically and emotionally chaotic. And I'm not sure how I'll feel about it all when he's actually gone.
And... I don't know. Other random stuff. Feeling generally lonely and unliked/unlikeable, both in blogland and real life. And therefore trying to be more social, which adds to the scheduling exhaustion. Stressing about my upcoming birthday, but that's a whole 'nother post. Just generally feeling like I'm barely keeping my head above water. And like my brain is never ever quiet. Which means that I forget stupid things, like how I still haven't managed to return the Netflix DVD I watched on Friday. Or how I haven't actually done real grocery shopping in maybe two and a half weeks now.
Okay. I think I need some... priorities, or something. The class will be over in 20 days. That's not really a long time. It just feels like it at the moment because just the thought of facing tomorrow makes me want to cry. I do realize that if I cut out everything fun, if I forbade myself from knitting or blogging or reading or watching TV, I might be more rested and less stressed about schoolwork. But I think I'd also be less sane. So I'm trying to think of some other things I can stop stressing about for the next 20 days. (Last class is July 31. My birthday. I will spend my birthday at work/class/commuting from 8am to 11pm. That really doesn't seem fair.)
1. Updating the SRP progress page more than once a week. I'm sure you all really don't expect that anyway. I like doing it, but it takes a while.
2. Staying on the SRP top ten list. That's what August is for. Besides, it will be more exciting if I can catch up from way behind, right?
3. Cooking. I'll still try to eat reasonably healthily, but it won't kill me to live on PBJ, canned soup, and Lean Cuisine for a few weeks, right? And this is just "not feel guilty about not doing," not "not do." So if I want to cook, I can, but I won't feel like a horrible person if I don't.
4. Cleaning my bedroom. The public areas of the apartment are reasonably neat and easy to maintain, so I'm just going to forget about the bedroom for now. No one but me goes in there anyway, and now that I've moved my TV and general homework-doing area to the living room, I'm generally in there only to sleep.
5. The Amazing Lace. Um, not that I seemed to be very worried about that anyway. Maybe I'll pick up some more of the challenges in August.
6. Social or familial engagements. Again, not "can't," but won't stress about skipping/avoiding them.
7. A sleep schedule. Yeah, yeah, I know that skipping sleep won't help. But sometimes an extra half hour of reading or knitting does more for my general feelings of well-being than an extra half hour of sleep would, so I'm not going to worry about it all much. This also rescinds my general ban on naps, especially as I've discovered that napping on the couch leaves me much less groggy than napping in bed.
8. The Rule of Ten. yeah, like you didn't see that coming. For the rest of July, I can knit whatever I darn well please to help me cope.
February 27, 2006
And now the fallout.
My normal schedule of two jobs and school tends to put me about at the limit of what my body can deal with and still stay healthy. So when I added a trip (and recovering from it) and the Knitting Olympics, my body's response was something like "Um, no. Stop." At least it let me finish the Olympics before I crashed. But last night/this morning I developed some sort of sneezing, coughing, sore throat, swollen glands, general horrid-feeling yuckiness. So I came home from work early and have been watching movies, catching up on blogs, knitting Salina, doing homework, drinking Cold Season herbal tea, and trying to convince myself that my neck hurts because I slept on the floor at my friend's house the other night, not because I have, say, meningitis. Yeah. Fun times.
February 03, 2006
I think that's the basic problem. I've been having a pretty horrid week, but basically, I'm just tired. Two jobs, school, trying to get ready for my trip, various interpersonal drama... yeah. I may end up decreasing my hours at the bookstore, but I hate that, since that's one of the things I actually enjoy. It seems that everything that could be cut out/compressed to make more time - bookstore, knitting, blogging, reading - are the things that actually make me feel better. The main things that are tiring me out - full time job and school - are the things I have to do. Argh. There's no solution, obviously, but if anyone has any ideas, I'd love to hear them. Preferably solutions that bend the space-time continuum. Thanks.
That said, welcome to everyone who has found me through Steph's mention of my Knitting Olympics Links. I will have a link to that page up on the sidebar ASAP, and I am adding in all the links you all have been sending me as I can.
January 25, 2006
So that's why I feel so awful.
According to a British scientist, this is the most depressing week of the year. And, um, yeah, that wouldn't surprise me. I'm off to go curl up in a ball somewhere and cry.
October 22, 2005
The bad place.
One of my new blog addictions, a little pregnant, has a category of entries that she calls "Welcome to the bad place. Population: You." I have been, um, rather enamored of this category name recently, because it seems to fit how I've been feeling so very very well. (I am also wishing I had some more interesting category names, especially now that I'm writing more personal stuff. Hmm. Perhaps a project for tomorrow. Because I have, you know, so much time.)
Anyway. The bad place. I feel like I've been getting rather familiar with it the past week or so. Let's just say that, if I were to take one of those "Which Serenity character are you?" quizzes, I would not be the least bit surprised to get a resounding answer of "River." Why? That's not so clear. I mean, I'm not the most happy-go-lucky person to start with, certainly. And a lot of it is the break up. Yes, it's been two months or so, but you don't get over five years in two months. And yes, I was doing very well for a while. But now I'm doing not so well, which is probably good, because it means I'm not suppressing my emotions as much. It's not that I'm pining and wanting him back (most of the time), so that's good, at least. I'm just still dealing with the fallout.
The fallout, more particularly, is a sort of identity crisis. An old college friend recently said, mostly joking (I think), "I don't even know who you are anymore." It sort of hurt. But. There it is.
I don't even know who the heck I am anymore.
Welcome to the bad place, indeed.
Now that I'm here, though, and I've recognized I'm here, it's sort of comforting. The eye of the storm, perhaps. I am letting myself be sad, happy, insane, miserable, euphoric, distracted, scattered, and obsessed as I need - or all at once. I am not doing the "la la la it's all great" thing because, well, it isn't. I am letting myself think about who I am, what I want, and what I don't want. I am letting myself think about the past, and the future. (And, of course, Thanksgiving.) I am, periodically, trying as hard as I can to Just Stop Thinking. Oh yeah, it's been fun.
At the moment, though, I'm feeling pretty stable. I spent the evening eating Indian food at a new (to me) restaurant and then sitting around the living room drinking wine and listening to music with my roommate. I'm actually feeling slightly relaxed for once. (Don't worry, I'm sure I'll wake up stressed.) My aunt was supposed to visit this weekend, but she wasn't feeling well and decided to stay home. Now, I am sorry that I won't get to see her, but I am not terribly upset about the prospect of an unexpected free day.
So, my new and improved plan for tomorrow:
I have made a deal with myself that as soon as I finish the blanket, I can knit whatever I darn well please. For a while, at least. So watch for a severe case of knitting ADD with a side order of existential angst, coming soon to a blog near you!
October 21, 2005
And where was the graffiti, anyway?
Just to keep us updated:
So, to help me Just Stop Thinking, we watched American Graffiti. Great soundtrack. Interesting seeing the actors (especially Dreyfuss and Ford) so young. Loved Harrison Ford singing "Some Enchanted Evening." But. WTF?
Problem A: The plot. Let's just say that I was not surprised when George Lucas said in the "making of" documentary that the original version was almost twice as long. I definitely felt as though a few of those deleted scenes would have been helpful for figuring out, you know, what the heck was going on.
Problem B: The message. Let's review what we learned:
It also really bugged me that, at the end, there were little notes of what happened to the four primary male characters, but nothing about the women. Presumably they all got married and lived happily ever after. Or, you know, went insane from dealing with these men.
I also did not notice any graffiti in the movie. Huh?
Posted by Kat at 11:17 PM
October 20, 2005
So it looks like I'm not going home for Thanksgiving.
This in itself is not necessarily all that odd. Of the past four Thanksgivings, I have spent two away from my family, with my ex-boyfriend and his parents. That, in fact, is part of the issue. This Thanksgiving, I will not be with the person with whom I spent the past four Thanksgivings. I know, I know, Thanksgiving is about family... but still. This year will seem strange, regardless of what I do.
The reasons I'm not going, though, are more practical.
Here's how I think Thanksgiving should go:
Here's how this Thanksgiving would actually go:
Nevertheless, I had planned to go, mostly because I was worried about my parents' reaction if I didn't. And I was worried about my parents getting flack from the rest of the family if I didn't show. But then I talked to my parents, and they both seem to think that doing all that driving for so little time home, when I have all this other stuff I need to be doing, is, well, insane. So. Everyone seems agreed. No need for me to go home for Thanksgiving.
Now, of course, the question is what to do instead. There are a few possibilities. Plan A involves going with my roommate to his parents' house. Plan B, which is perhaps more likely, involves spending the day in my favorite pajamas, knitting and watching the parade and Christmas movies, and then having some sort of celebration with my roommate later in the weekend. Really, either sounds okay. I think. Of course, I'm not sure how I'll feel when the day arrives, but I'm trying not to worry about it too much. I'm sure some variation of sad (re: loneliness) and/or guilt-stricken (re: filial duty) will be in there somewhere... might as well let it be a surprise so I have something to look forward to.
Aren't holidays fun?
Posted by Kat at 11:02 PM
October 13, 2005
Pulling myself together
So, um, sorry about yesterday. I'd been thinking about including more personal stuff on this blog, and I guess in my madness yesterday I decided to go for it. Hope no one minded. And a very big thank you to Folkcat, Lauren, Kat, and Kristen for all the support and virtual hugs in the comments. It really did help.
So I wound up leaving class early because I was feeling worse and worse, physically, and was having trouble concentrating as well. At points, I was struggling not to fall asleep, so I was worried about driving home if I had stayed for the whole class. Of course, due to power problems or something, I ended up waiting about an hour for a train to take me back to my car. Waiting outside. In the cold/wind/occasional rain. Yes, I'm sure this did wonders for my cold. Anyway, I finally made it home, only a bit earlier than it would have been if I'd just stayed in class, but still. I put on my jammies, talked to my roommate for a while, went to bed, and actually slept quite well.
Today I'm feeling emotionally better but physically yucky. (Of course, they are related; I need to teach my body that "hey, bronchitis!" is not a good reaction to a little stress. Not that I have bronchitis now, but that's where things have generally headed in the past.) I have a full-fledged cold now, with coughing and intermittant wheezing and chills. Fun. So, the plan for the evening:
1. Put on favorite pajamas
Sound good? I have a pretty full weekend planned, so I need to get better. I am also afraid that this cold is the start of the long-running illness I seem to get almost every winter. It's a combination of stress and the weather, I think: as soon as the cold and finals and the holiday season hit, I'm vaguely ill for months. It comes and goes, of course; most of the time it's more annoying than actually debilitating. But yeah... annoying. I'd like to break the cycle. I think it's a combination of not taking very good care of myself and not having very healthy ways of dealing with stress. So this year, I'm formulating a plan. What I have so far:
1. Get enough sleep. No, really. Yes, with two jobs and class, there are nights when I just can't get to bed early enough to get eight hours, but these nights are not the majority. The problem is that there are way too many nights when I stay up late for no good reason. I think if I can improve this, it will make a huge difference - at this point, I can barely imagine not being tired all the time.
2. Remember to take my vitamins. I'm getting better, but still not remembering every day.
3. Eat better. I don't eat horribly, by any means, but I'm sure I don't get enough protein. (Suggestions on easy protein??) And some more fruits and veggies wouldn't kill me.
4. Stay hydrated. Another obvious one that gives me way too much trouble.
5. Actually wear some of those scarves and hats I'm always knitting. Well, I don't know. You don't get colds from being cold, right? Is there any relation to having your body temperature drop or whatever because of weather, and getting sick? In any case, the cold aggravates my asthma, so I should make some attempt with the scarf thing at least.
6. Find some other way to deal with stress, darn it. This is the hard one. I get stressed, my body acts up, I ignore it until it gets so bad that I have to stop everything and stay in bed for a few days. Which, subconsciously, may contribute to the cycle: the implied "reward" of getting to stay home sick. Argh. This is the one I really need help with, and I'd love to hear any input.
Any thoughts/suggestions on any of it would be much appreciated, actually...
October 12, 2005
Well, this is fun.
Apparently the "Aaaaaah"ness of the previous entry led to a total meltdown in the car on the way from work to class. (It's about an hour drive, NH to Boston.) I spent the time alternating between fighting tears, wondering if I've finally just gone mad, and debating whether to just turn around and go home. Yeah, fun stuff. Now I'm in the computer lab at school getting ready to face a three-hour class. And then the drive home.
If I didn't actually have stuff that needed to get done at work (for once), I would be seriously considering a mental health day tomorrow. Ah well. I'd also sort of like a hug... but there's really no one around to get one from. I'm not comfortable hugging people I don't feel I know very well, but most of my friends in NH are not huggy types, so it's a problem.
Aaaah. It's one of those days when I feel like I'm too messed up or damaged to ever have a "normal" life and I don't deserve one anyway. And I don't know what I want. In practically any context. And I don't know how I'm going to face three hours of sitting through class and the requisite small talk with classmates, and then walking to the T in the rain and then taking the T and then driving home. And my brain won't stop and I'm just driving myself crazy at this point.
I'm trying to convince myself that this is all fairly normal post-breakup stuff... right? Help!
I am now undoing all the data entry I did yesterday, because they gave me the wrong information. This is hours of work. And then I have to redo it all when they figure out the correct information. One of the people involved called to apologize, but really, couldn't they bring me chocolate or something? I was having a vaguely off day anyway. I don't feel good, but I have to be at work and then go to class. And work is being frustrating, and it's been raining for days, and I do like rain but enough is enough. And there could be some of what Cate is talking about going on, too. Actually, now that I reread Cate's entry, I'm identifying with a lot of it. Especially if you substitute "messy house" for "demon-possessed children." But yeah... cold/coughing, PMS, work frustration and overwhelmsion (WHAT is the correct form of that word? My brain is obviously gone at this point), contemplation of Big Life Changes, knitting frustration... check, check, check.
I'd like to say I'm going to go curl up in my comfy bed and drink tea and read and knit now, but, well, I can't. Which may be part of the problem.
Hope someone out there in Blogland is having a better day... send sunshine and cough drops.