Day of Moan

May. 1st, 2017 09:37 pm
malinaldarose: (Default)
Well...no bats so far. Not that I'd really expect to see them this early in the season, anyway, it's just...well, it's just. I think maybe the next thing I have tackled will be the bathroom, even if it's just to have someone come in and put up the ceiling. I have the names of three different contractors: the guy who fixed the kitchen light (and who I thought was a little expensive, and does it really take three hours to change out a light?), and two others. Well, four others if you count the guy who installed the new furnace (he's not just a furnace guy) and the guy who he subcontracted to -- though my neighbor warned me against hiring that last guy.

Yesterday, I met an old friend -- oh, let's be honest, old boyfriend -- for breakfast. We met at 9:30 and finally left the restaurant at 12:30, and we could probably have talked for another couple of hours, too. We haven't seen one another in a few months, and the last time we did wasn't really conducive to chatting, so the last time we had a chance for a good talk was probably a year or more ago. So that was nice. We've known each other for thirty-some-odd years at this point, so a lot of our conversation was about finding ourselves middle-aged (which isn't so nice).

After that, I came home, and decided that since it was sunny, I'd try to get some laundry done, even though storms were in the forecast. I did get the laundry on the line for an hour or so before I had to bring it in; I left it in the breezeway to finish drying. I also started to clean the breezeway out yesterday afternoon; I got the couch turned around and that corner of the room cleared. There's only one outlet, and there doesn't appear to be power to it -- whether it's disconnected, like the wall furnace, or whether it's just turned off, I do not know. I don't really need power out there; I won't be using it after dark. There's still a lot of work to be done, though.

I was sweeping some of the accumulated dirt and dead leaves out the back door when my mother walked in the front door. "What are you doing?" she asked. "What does it look like I'm doing?" I said, broom in hand.

As usual, my folks weren't actually here to see me. Usually when they wander in on a Sunday, it's because Mom has a list of things she's bought for Grama and she wants to be reimbursed, so she wants a check. This time, it was because she wanted to grill me about my sister, who is apparently having trouble at work -- trouble which I had only learned about yesterday morning when Bird caught me on FB and asked if I had any ideas about what she should do.

(It seems that because she isn't constantly Miss Susie Sunshine, she's been passed over for a summer job that she has done for the last three or four years and her unit supervisor actually told her that she would be reluctant to recommend Bird for a permanent position -- which isn't going to be a problem, anyway, if Bird can't ever place high enough on the clerical exam. In any case, this particular supervisor is only going to be with us for another nine months (thank goodness!) and Bird's temporary permanent position (it's a permanent position in that it gets her benefits and union membership, but it's a position with a time limit of two years and some months) runs for another four or five months after that, so it won't be up to Madame High and Mighty. I told her to try to get moved to one of the units upstairs; I'm not certain that those clerks are under Mme H&M's control.)

Today...was Monday. I had a low-level headache by lunchtime, and I stayed in the office for lunch so I didn't have to put up with the Gecko. I was going to stay after work, too, but ended up hurrying home so that I could get Jack walked because we were under not only a severe storm warning, but a tornado watch -- all of WNY was under a tornado watch, and Mom called Bird to let her know that there were tornadoes on the ground in PA. (Bird lives over the border in PA.) Of course, those tornadoes were two and three hours away, but they were on the ground! Mom gets a little...over-anxious about these things.

So I got home, rushed right past the Gecko to get socks and change into my sneakers and take off my jewelry and grab my raincoat and get back out to get Jack around the block...and we got as far as the parking lot at the end of the block where we cut over to the next street and it started to rain. And by "rain," I mean "the heavens opened and all the waters of the world fell down upon us, yea, and also did blow the winds, so that there were white-caps on the puddles." Jack and I were both drenched pretty much immediately, and to get home, we had to turn back into it because it was coming from the west(ish) and we were walking east. It blew my hood off right away, and Jack was simultaneously trying to huddle on the ground and shelter behind me. We passed a bush he usually pees on, and he headed straight for it; I thought he was going to pee again, but instead he tried to crawl under it. He was quite put out with me for insisting that we go home, but he was probably even more relieved than I was when we got there. He looked like a drowned rat and there was so much water in my sneakers that they sloshed. I'll be wearing something else for morning walkies. My pants were so wet that I had to wring them out in the tub and hang them in the bathroom to dry. My socks...well, I just tossed them into the tub. We were a seriously bedraggled pair.

I've been caught out in the rain before, but never such a deluge with such high winds. It was...unpleasant, and Jack's obvious anxiety wasn't helping.

But at least the smell of wet dog overpowered the smell of unwashed Gecko, so....
malinaldarose: (Default)
I bought a new lawnmower this morning. I am hoping that the extended warranty is sufficient and I don't have to hunt me up a virgin to sacrifice to the Lawn Gods. I will probably not try it out today, though; it's supposed to be cloudy and chilly. I'll save it for tomorrow and/or Monday. Or maybe I'll at least try it with the front yard this afternoon. We'll see; I have a bunch of desk-related tasks to do as well. I should probably also take the old one in to be serviced and keep it around as a back up.

The folks at Home Depot were really nice about it when I asked if they could take it out of the box for me. The guy took it out of the box, got the handle situated for me (which involved a bit of smacking with tools to get the bolts to cooperate), then lifted it into the van for me and chocked the wheels so it wouldn't roll around. And everybody was chipper about it. It was nice.

In neighborhood news, the couple two houses up has separated. Supposedly, they're not going to divorce, but according to what our mutual next door neighbor told me, the wife has been miserable here for a long time, and so she has moved to Indiana to be near her kids. The husband cannot retire for another five years or so, so is staying here. Five years is a heck of a long time to live apart. Her moving van pulled out yesterday morning sometime between the time I walked Jack and the time I left for work. I feel kind of bad for them; they married the same year I did, and moved into the neighborhood as newly weds a few months after we did.

Across the street, meanwhile, the Gossip and his wife have returned from their winter peregrinations. I am not looking forward to having them around; I have decided that I really don't like him. (She's pretty much a non-entity; she hardly ever leaves the house.) He's nosy, and he's a pain in the ass. He's very helpful, but in a controlling sort of way that is very like my mother's helpfulness. He snatched one of my many lawnmowers out of my hands one time while I was changing the spark plug and marched across the street with it to fix it. I was really annoyed that it did run better after that for a while.

In what is not a surprise to anyone, the switchover to the new phone system at work did not go smoothly. Well, maybe it did, but nearly everyone had some difficulty setting up their voice mail, and when I left yesterday afternoon, mine was still not working. Having now had to use the phone, I can say that I do not like them. The sound quality sucks. But, hey, at least it stays hung up now.
malinaldarose: (Default)
It has been another busy day. I haven't yet had a chance to take my afternoon break, so the rest of the work day (all fifteen minutes of it) is cancelled. But hey, at least I'm not taking a nap like the person in the cube behind me. Her radio is playing softly, and she's asleep. Which actually happens frequently enough that it's an open secret. She didn't have her cubicle's doorway moved (it was originally across from mine and now it's around the corner) for the light, she had it moved so that no one would know when she took naps.

This morning, I had to go to a training on supplemental needs trusts. It wasn't really much of a training; someone came down from Buffalo and read from a Power Point presentation. I really hate that. Just give me the printout and leave me to it; don't waste my time reading something I'm capable of reading myself.

This afternoon, because I am the 9-5 person of record this week, I had to talk to a pair of interns from the local high school. They're not true interns; they're just fulfilling a community service requirement (or something along those lines) for graduation. They come into the agency after school for a week and get lectured on each of the various programs. This is the first time I've ever had the duty, and let me tell you, I am not the person to lecture anyone about Medicaid in general because I have always been in a specialized sub-unit. But I'm the one they got stuck with. Well, we made it 35 minutes (out of two hours) before I ran out of things to say, and sent them back upstairs to the person in charge of the internship program.

Oh, she just woke up. Well, the day is nearly over....

Last night, BFT and J1 and I finally went to see Beauty and the Beast. It is a fantastic film, but when Emma Watson came down the stairs in the yellow ballgown, all I could think of was Hermione coming down the stairs for the Yule Ball. I hadn't realized that Emma Thompson and Ewan MacGregor were both in the film (Mrs. Potts and Lumière), though I recognized Ian McKellan's voice of course. According to the trivia for the film on IMDB, there is a hint in Belle's first song that the village is also partly under the curse, reliving the same day -- "There goes the baker with his tray like always" and Belle knowing where to walk to get through the crowd while reading. It's an interesting thought and actually makes sense since the village would have originally been beholden to the castle, and certainly isn't that far from it. And with the way the film ends, it would have been exceedingly cruel not to include the village in the curse in some way, and we can see, I think, that the Enchantress isn't cruel. (Scenes not included in the animated version.)

The weather has turned yet again. It was a pretty day yesterday, but today has been rainy and damp and chilly (though the actual temperature is decent for this time of year; it's the damp that makes it chilly). It is quite windy right now and rain is spattering against the house which is making odd creaky-groany noises every so often (not at all like the usual noises of mice in the walls and a dog and cat grooming themselves). I will have to go patrol the yard (check for rabbits, possums, deer, etc.) before letting Jack out, and then Jack will refuse to go off the ramp, because his delicate paws might get damp.

I didn't come home at lunchtime (because I allow myself one day a week when I don't have to interact with the Gecko at all), and arrived home this afternoon to find the Gecko sitting on the couch with the curtains behind it rucked up, and reeking of Not Having Washed In Several Days As Usual. When I got back from walking Jack (just a quick five minutes around the block), her father was sitting in the driveway, and she was still sitting on the couch staring at her tablet, so I informed her rather sharply that her father was waiting for her. I hate it when she does that. It's not like she can't hear him pull in; his vehicle is Very Loud, Indeed. Let's face it: I hate everything she does. This rucking up my curtains, though, annoys me a great deal. I have my house just so, and I expect it to stay that way, and that means leaving the curtains closed if they're closed. If you don't have enough light, you know where the switches are.

My sister got her hair cut last night after work. She got one of those bobs that's nape-length in back and chin length in front, and sweeps across on one side. It looked nice this morning, but I can guarantee that it won't stay that way. Someone asked me if I was going to get mine cut next (my sister and I work in the same office), and my response was, "God, no! I hate my hair short." Which I do. It looks good when it's short; I can't deny that. But I dislike it nevertheless. And for me, anything less than bra strap-length is short, and even that's pushing it.

Right. Time to check the yard....
malinaldarose: (Default)
I am still not receiving comment notifications. It's very odd. A few old ones did trickle in this morning. Usually these sorts of things don't affect me...or they never used to, anyway.

Which reminds me: my LJ will be fifteen years old this year. Fifteen. And, lo, I boggle.

It has been a pretty day. The sun has shone most of the day, and it's been in the upper 50s. I think tomorrow is supposed to be warmer, but rainy. Not that it matters, since I'll be stuck in a fabric-covered box all day.

It has also been a particulary weird day. I woke up this morning from another dream about guest-starring HTWIWM. Yesterday morning, he was leaving me in possession of yet another semi-ruined house. This morning, he and his Twinke were moving in with me. And I was okay with it. Even being friendly to Her Twinkness.

But then I woke up. Look at the clock and it was only 5:20. Cried a little. Went back to sleep and dreamed something better, and when I got up at nearly 7:00 a.m., felt much better about the world, though still lonely and a bit depressed.

While I was eating my breakfast, I logged onto FB and picked up a conversation with a friend via Messenger, and literally spent all morning talking to him. Well. Exchanging messages, but we had a pretty wide-ranging conversation. And in between messages, I read an entire novel-length Avengers fic. And then I read the 17K-world follow-up, and then I read the 7K-word follow-up to that. And then AO3 went down, so I walked the dog again.

And then I finished The Light Fantastic, which felt much more Discworldly to me than The Color of Magic. Next up: Equal Rites.

And now it's well after 6:00 p.m., and I've spent the entire day doing basically nothing. But I actually don't mind....

Jack and I nearly met yet another neighborhood dog this afternoon. Since I didn't jump on my treadmill this morning, I decided we'd better go for extra-long walkies this afternoon. We were getting near the far corner, where we haven't walked in ages, when I noticed that there was a loose dog cavorting with some kids a few houses up the street. Since you can't trust people who let their dogs out loose to corral them when someone comes walking by, I turned us around and headed home. I was annoyed.

And then the woman who used to have the fluffy white dog called admiring words about Jack, adding that he reminded her of a dog she had had. I restrained myself from snarling that I remembered her white fluffy dog very well, thank you, from the few times when he'd attacked me because he was also loose -- and territorial.

Well. Attacked might not be quite accurate. He menaced me -- rushed out into the road and snarled and wouldn't let me pass even though I was on the other side of the street. It was Bailey that he actually attacked, and fortunately, HTWIWM was with me at the time, and he managed to separate the dogs...just. And the stupid cow came running to get her white angel...but still wasn't careful about making sure he was secured when he was outside. (Their yard isn't fenced, and they tied him out in the front instead of the back.)

This week is my turn to work 9-5, so I am making a dinner that should last me through a big chunk of the week, but I also am thawing the liquid I drained off the hamburger when I made hamburger-and-rice for Jack when he was sick some months back, so I can make soup out of it. I'll toss either noodles or rice into it one night this week, and it'll be fine. Well. Maybe some bouillon. Or maybe not.

I'm starting to ramble, so it's time to go....

Um...What?

Mar. 31st, 2017 05:52 pm
malinaldarose: (Default)
I decided that since this morning was Friday, and since I needed to break a twenty-dollar bill, I'd stop at Dunkin' Donuts this morning and get a muffin for breakfast. So I pulled in and parked -- I never go through the drive-thru because I always want to see what they actually have -- and found that the shop was full of teenagers. I didn't have time to wade through them and I didn't have time to back track and go to either Tim Horton's or the grocery store, so I just went to work. I keep a box of Pop-Tarts in my cubicle for a reason. (Tangent: There's a fine line between done and scorched. If you can smell the rich smell of chocolate fudge, pop the toaster. Otherwise....)

A little later, I'm having an email conversation with my mother, in which I mention that I had to have a make-do breakfast of scorched Pop-Tarts. And she says to me, "Why didn't you call us? We'd've brought you something."

Really? Really?! RLY?!?

Why would she even think that I'd even think to call my mommy to bring me breakfast at work? When, in the history of ever have I asked my parents to bring me anything to my place of employment? Never, that's when, not even when I was briefly living with them after I separated from my first husband. I'm nearly fifty years old ferchrissakes; I think I can manage a morning without breakfast.

But I'm also smart, which is why I have Pop-Tarts (non-perishable nuclear disaster "food") in my cubicle to begin with -- so I don't have to manage a morning without breakfast.

This definitely falls under the category of "I can't even."

In other news...I've completely forgotten what else I was going to write about.
malinaldarose: (hate_snow)
So there's a statewide snowpocalypse warning. The governor gave all state employees (except in six or seven downstateish counties) a snow day without having to use their accrual times. Even state employees at this end of the state get a snow day today. And, lo, I am jealous because that means that, for instance, in the One Stop uptown, the Dept of Labor staff won't have to report because they're state employees but the Dept of Social Services staff will because they're county employees. All of the school systems in the region are closed today. Seneca Nation offices are closed. My freakin' gynecologist's office is closed.

It goes without saying, of course, that I have to go to work today. Bleah.

It's not actually bad out there right now; no worse than any other storm we've had this winter. There's perhaps three-quarters of an inch of snow, but it is falling steadily. It's during the day that it's supposed to get bad, and overnight tonight. Which means that tomorrow is actually the day when it might be unpleasant. I was looking at a close-up radar map a little earlier, and you can actually see the gradations in the shading that show where the mini-snowbelts are. While I am in a light blue area here, for instance, the farm where I used to live is in a darker blue area. But such a tiny area that if you zoom out on the map, it no longer shows up.

Eh, whatever. Long story short: I have to work today. Phooey. Maybe I'll take tomorrow as a vacation day.

My big news is that the light in the kitchen is replaced. When I got home last night, the garage lights were hanging on the rack right next to the back door. I am both pleased and...less pleased. I am so happy to have HTWIWM's "temporary" fix for kitchen lighting gone. I am less pleased because -- and oh, how I hate to admit this -- he was right about the placements of his "temporary" lights. Having a single ceiling fixture means that if I'm working at the counter or the sink, I'm casting a shadow on whatever I'm working on. Also, the new light is way too bright for my small kitchen (it certainly shows where I need to clean!), and I'll have to figure out a way of fixing that. Over on FB, a dimmer was suggested, and I may look into that, though I'm not a fan of dimmer switches. When I was a wee lass, my grandmother had under-cabinet lights installed; I may look into something like that, too. At the moment, I just have a small lamp in the corner so I can have some light out there without the Bright White Light Of Fluorescea blazing away.

I feel like an idiot that I'm not entirely happy about the whole thing, but...well.

Unfortunately, the contractor didn't leave a bill behind. I was hoping that he would so that I could get a check in the mail to him today. I suppose he'll be mailing me one.

Oooo. Maybe I could hang some glimmer strings or icicle lights....

Ah, well. I suppose I need to go find some clothings to wear to The Place today (Dress Code: Be Dressed) so that I have time enough to a) have breakfast, b) make lunch, and c) get the car cleaned off.

Daystream

Feb. 24th, 2017 05:33 pm
malinaldarose: (Default)
  • I really dislike it when people parade their children or grandchildren around the office introducing them to people. If I wanted to know their children and/or grandchildren, I'd probably be friends with them, rather than just coworkers. And I loathe children, so I find dealing with them difficult. (Mind you, if I get cornered, then obviously, I'm going to put on a happy face and dig out my talking-to-children voice, but I'm also going to resent the hell out of it.)

  • It's supposed to be 70° today. Edit: I just spoke with one of my colleagues at Dept. of Aging, and she said that it's warmer outside than it is inside.

  • There was lightning when I walked Jack this morning. Only in the clouds, but still startling...especially when I'm currently reading the Shadow Unit episode "Dark Leader," in which the gamma can cause lightning strikes.

  • I am having one of those days: I wrote a check for a bill that had to go in the mail this morning, sealed the envelope, and found the check lying on my desk. Fortunately, I was able to get the envelope open again without tearing it, but I had to reseal it with packing tape.

  • I have had eight clients die in the last week. It often happens in streaks, but it's always startling.

  • A couple of the clients were members of the church I grew up in. My grandmother saw their obituaries and asked if I knew them. "No, of course not, Grama!"

  • Stopped for a muffin this morning on my way to work. Because it has been One Of Those Days, there were three people in line in front of me and what should have taken three minutes took twelve. Naturally, I was late for work.

  • I am wearing one of the scarves I bought in Paris at the Cluny: it's a Unicorn Tapestries scarf. It's very lightweight and keeps flying all over the place when I walk. For some reason, I thought it was just the red background with the flowers and bunnies and such, but I looked at it unfurled this morning and there are unicorns at each end. I must have been confusing it with the tote bag I also bought at the museum (to carry the books and scarves), which is just red background with flowers and bunnies.

  • My neighbor in the next cubicle keeps using agency jargon when she talks to clients, and she can't figure out why people don't understand what she's talking about.

  • Can you break a knuckle? I jammed my thumb last night trying to dig some really, really frozen chunks out of a tub of ice cream, and it's kind of sore, but only when I use it certain ways. (Kidding on the "break" thing. Pretty sure it's just sore, though it was pretty painful at the time.)

  • Oooo! I won this week's 50/50 raffle! It's the first time I've won, ever -- and they have them relatively frequently because that's how all the office parties are funded.

  • Arrived home to find that someone was sharing their music with the neighborhood. Why is it those folks are never playing Handel? Or Mozart? Or Beethoven?

  • Debating whether to bother with dinner tonight. Had lunch from Burger King...which makes a big dinner contraindicated. Maybe some scrambled eggs.
malinaldarose: (Default)
Turns out last night wasn't a great one for sleep, either. Woke up in the middle of the night with acid in my throat, but was at the same time too asleep to go downstairs and get an antacid tablet. So I ended up not quite sleeping for the rest of the night slightly propped up on pillows. Eventually, it all went away again and I was able to get back to sleep...in time for the alarm to go off, yay.

And then it turned out to be Valentine's Day.

I hate Valentine's Day. Not a big surprise, right? My last Valentine's Day as a married person was passed in silence. HTWIWM had just returned from his nine-month sabatical with the Twinkie the weekend before, and I thought it wouldn't be fair to try to celebrate what I saw as my triumph when he probably still had feelings for her. So basically, I was being an adult about things. And see how far that got me -- by the time our anniversary rolled around that year, I was divorced.

Anyway. Used to be that BFT and I -- as single women who hated Valentine's Day -- would take the opportunity to Get The Hell Outta Dodge, but the last time we did that, we came home in a blizzard and followed a Very Nervous Woman down Route 219 -- which is, in part, quite twisty and hilly. She didn't go above 35 mph for a large chunk of it, and she rode her brakes almost the entire time. Granted, the weather was bad, but it wasn't quite that bad. And she was, as I recall, from Ontario, too. (Quite a few Ontario people come down to that part of the county for the skiing.)

After that night, though, we haven't gone in years. This year, we're going, but not until this coming weekend. And according to the weather seers, it should be 50°, so the chances of following a nervous Ontarian through a blizzard are...less than they might be.

Remember how I said I wasn't going to obsess about Emergency! any more? Yeah. Turned out that I just wasn't going to talk about it. (It actually makes a good thing to watch when I'm on my treadmill because generally by the time I finish, they're at the end of a rescue and it's a good stopping place.) I found out that there was a cross-over episode with another show from the same producers called Sierra about park rangers. For some odd reason, the LA County Fire Department decided to do cross-training with the park rangers and sent Johnny and Roy out to Learn Some Stuff. (Maybe that's where they picked up the rock climbing that they used in a later episode.) Anyway. I found the episode on YouTube last night. It was...like watching an impressionist painting come to life. Not good quality. Just good enough that you could tell from the general shapes what was going on, but mostly couldn't make out faces. The sound wasn't too bad, though. It was obviously someone's tape of a tape of a tape, complete with bad tracking marks.

I've been to that party before. I used to get tapes of tapes of tapes of The Tomorrow People (the original) long before DVDs arrived on the scene. I mean DVDs in general, not just DVDs of the series.

Bleah. Not looking forward to going to work today. I have a whole bunch of stuff I actually can't work on because I'm waiting for AVS to bake. I suppose I will go back to pulling out my 800 MA-SSI cases case by case by case to make sure that they're correct -- right case type for the recipient's SSI pay status, right address (so far as we know), make sure that any status changes have actually been noted in the case -- because the community workers, when they were doing these cases for two years, often thought that it was all automatic and that there wasn't anything they actually needed to do with them. Really? Really, guys? I gave you a pretty complete run-down on what needed to be done for each kind of change, and you still thought you didn't have to do anything? Really?

Makes me cranky.

Maybe I'll get a muffin on the way to work; I think Dunkin' still has the triple chocolate ones. And if that's the case, I need to get moving.
malinaldarose: (Default)
It's the last day of January and thus, one day closer to spring. Actually, by some measures, spring starts with Imbolc, which according to my calendar is tomorrow. (I always observed it on 2 February, though.) Regardless, I do have mixed feelings about spring this year. After last summer's Bat Episodes, I am just not looking forward to that again. I am beginning to think that when I get the van paid off later this year, I should take out a home improvement loan, get everything done that needs to be done (which is ridiculous; I can't get that much money!) and start looking for a house that doesn't have bats in it.

I won't, mind you. Inertia is my middle name, and while "inertia" also implies unending movement, I'm not in the movement phase. I am definitely at rest.

If I were smart, I'd buy my grandmother's house. But the neighbors are so close (they're actually on Gram's property on both sides; the line runs right through the middle of the one guy's garage). And the stairs are so narrow and steep and the only way to fix them is to completely remodel the downstairs and actually move the stairs elsewhere. And it's much farther from work; I wouldn't be able to come home for lunch on a daily basis. And it's smaller than my place; where would I put my books? It's not dinky, by any means, but really, where would I put my books?

I was bitching at work yesterday about that wellness program that I was enrolled in and found that a few others had received the flyer and just tossed it. I still don't understand how it's not a HIPAA violation, but I probably signed something at some point allowing the sharing of that information. Or maybe I didn't. Maybe they're just assuming that nobody cares or nobody knows HIPAA. But...well. Our agency is very much bound by HIPAA and we've had it drilled into our heads on numerous occasions.

In any case, I sent them a short, pithy, snarky (some would say bitchy) email to the effect that I had been enrolled without my knowledge or consent and wanted to opt out immediately. I received about half an hour later, a confirmation email. I said "thanks;" the person on the other side said, "my pleasure," and that was it. No, really. She said, "My pleasure." I let it go after that rather than devolve into a Chip and Dale exchange of pleasantries.

We're supposed to be playing around with the AVS practice site now that we've had the training, before we go live, but I haven't. Haven't even logged into it yet. I really should since I'll be using it a lot more than some of my cow-orkers, but I have better things to do with my time, I guess. Maybe I'll poke at it today; recerts are due in today, but as usual, I've only received a few. Good thing I'm not a terrible stickler about time frames; I'd be constantly closing and reopening cases. I do enough of that as it is.

I went to visit my grandmother last night. Casting about for a topic of conversation, I told her that I'd been watching Emergency!; I figured she'd relate to that because she spends a lot of time watching the classic TV station and I know they were airing it at one point. I laughed about how I had a crush on one of the actors when I was a little kid and I still kind of had a crush on him, but it was weird to realize that he's got to be in his 70s now. Gram laughed, too. "Maybe he can be your sugar daddy," she said.

Now...my aunt and my mother both complain about Gram not being as sharp as she should be, but she sure as heck remembers the stuff I tell her -- like when I said that for my birthday (or for Christmas; Ican't remember which) I wanted a sugar daddy....

The weather seems to be unable to quite make up its mind whether it wants to snow or not. I've looked out the window a few times to find snowglobe snow falling, only to look out a few minutes later and find it clear. Last night, I looked out the back window and by the time I made it to the front window, the snow had stopped. Or maybe it was only falling in the backyard. At least it's not piling up too much.

Furious

Jan. 28th, 2017 04:05 pm
malinaldarose: (Default)
Oh, I am not happy right now. My employer has apparently enrolled me in a "Wellness Program" through a company called Corporate Care Management. Just the name alone makes my teeth itch.

The flyer arrived in the mail today, and here's some excerpts:

"We reach out to members who are high-risk to become ill. If you have a chronic condition and you are missing certain lab tests, you may receive letters or a phone call from us. " and "If we notice that we have sent several letters to you, a nurse might call you to see if she can help." It goes on to explain that they look to see if a claim has been submitted on your behalf for certain tests or screenings. If not, they'll send you nagging letters about it -- or even have a nurse call you to nag you on the phone -- until you do. This seems like if it's not a HIPAA violation, it's skirting right on the edge of one.

I have mild high blood pressure; I take medication for it. I fought taking meds for a long time, but finally agreed to do so, and my blood pressure dropped into the normal range pretty much immediately and has stayed there ever since. (Except for right now when I'm furious.) Which means that as long as I'm enrolled in this program, I can expect to be nagged pretty regularly.

You can opt out, of course, but you have to make a phone call -- and that's the part that really makes me angry. Things like this should never be opt-out. They should always be opt-in. I am a grown-ass adult who has been taking care of her own health care matters for almost three decades. I don't suddenly need a nanny.
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I seem to have survived another week of LJ Idol. Good ol' Sal Alarra. I'm beginning to wonder if I should write her whole story; I actually have pretty much the whole thing in my head. I've never written sci fi before, partly because of the "science" part. Not sure what sort of research I'd have to do to make Lightcastle Station work properly -- would watching Deep Space Nine and Babylon 5 constitute research?

They actually started handing out W2s at work yesterday -- two whole days ahead of when they absolutely have to. I had already printed mine from the online site where I now have to retrieve my pay stubs, which means I can do my taxes this weekend. I may or may not; depends on whether I want to mess with them. The software I use makes them simple, but it still takes up to two hours.

According to an email that went out late yesterday afternoon, we're not only supposed to sign a form stating that we received our W2s from the payroll clerk (if we do), but we're also supposed to sign something giving them permission to not give us hard copies next year. They intend that from now on, we'll only retrieve them online.

I am not thrilled about this. Paper always boots. Well, unless it's a really, really, really hot day, but if the temperature is higher than 451°, then we've got other things to worry about.

Speaking of which, I have ordered my copy of 1984. I had to get it from B&N since Amazon was sold out and PaperbackSwap didn't have any copies left, either. I have actually read it; it was one of the required books when I was in high school. I don't remember much about it other than I loathed it...but I loathed almost everything that was required reading. The few books I have since reread, I actually enjoyed. I have also ordered a copy of Brave New World which I haven't read before.

Having finished one '70s television series, I have gone back to another that was a childhood favorite: The Six Million Dollar Man. It's a bit silly. There was an episode, for instance, where to escape the Bad Guys (a bunch of pro football players) with his friend (another pro football player), Steve and the friend (played by Larry Csonka, who was also in an episode of Emergency!) had to play football against them. It was ridiculous. Also, I've noticed that Steve's bionics are as powerful or not powerful as the story requires. And now that I'm so much older, I have questions like "How does his organic torso stand the stresses put on it by the use of the bionics?" and "Why didn't they armor the back of his skull while they were at it since he gets hit over the head at least once an episode?" This hasn't stopped me watching, mind you, and while I wait for the two final seasons to arrive, I'll either go back to the beginning (it's been a year or so since I watched the first two seasons), or I'll start The Bionic Woman (yet another childhood favorite -- I even had a Jaime Somers doll when I was little), since I've had the first season sitting around for a couple of years.

Also, now I want to see Steve Austin go through the Stargate. Can you just imagine Col. Austin and Col. O'Neill? The snark alone would keep the Goa'uld at bay.

The lake effect storm warning for the weekend seems to have been downgraded to a watch. They were talking about feet of snow for the weekend total, though that would have been in ski country, not around here -- though we could still have had enough snow to make me very unhappy. Well, we still could, I suppose, but I'm hoping not. (Ha! Originally typed "noping," which is clearly "hoping not.")

The only thing planned for the weekend other than a lot of goofing off is dinner out with BFT this evening. We've both had awful enough weeks that the only cure is ice cream in vast quantities....
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One of the things I really hate about winter walkies is that the snow holds the traces of the bunnies and deer that frequent the neighborhood, and Jack insists on investigating. He'd follow bunny tracks right to wherever the bunnies were holed up if I let him. Which I don't. But that doesn't mean that I don't get jerked around a lot and end up having to have a firmer hold on the leash than I prefer. This morning was a prime example. I had to tell him several times to pee on it or walk away. That's the rule. We don't stand around snuffling at something all morning. Pee on it or walk away.

Looks like we're headed into the January thaw. According to this morning's long range forecast, it's supposed to be 52° in a couple of days -- and rain, of course. But it's supposed to stay in the upper 30s or lower 40s for the few days after that, which is nice -- better a slow slide back into the February Freeze than to have it happen all in a single day.

I keep telling myself that it's really only several weeks until spring, instead of several months; if you count winter as beginning in October around here (and I do), then we're well past the midway point.

I had a counseling appointment last evening which ended up being mainly a discussion about geneology and family history. There's a slight possibility that I am distantly related to my counselor. She didn't tell me what my blood pressure was, so I presume it was okay. My weight was up, but I was also wearing my boots, and I was firmly laced into them and didn't feel like unlacing them. It'll make a nice change at my next appointment when I'll be down three pounds.

After that...well, as might not be unexpected, I spent the evening binge-watching Emergency! I've got three more episodes to finish out the fourth season, then I might see about watching the current episode of Sherlock. (Though, honestly, I don't really like Sherlock that much. I'm kind of watching it so as not to feel left out of the conversation. Funny that I don't feel that way about other popular shows.) It's funny, watching these old episodes back to back to back to back. You might not notice exactly how much stock and old footage they use if you're watching it week to week, but there is only so much traveling footage for both the squad and the engine and they reused it extensively. They even reused footage of the firemen getting ready to go out on a run to the point that I noticed last night that John's hair was a couple of inches shorter while he was running for the squad than it was when he got into it. Kinda funny, really.

Yeah, I know. Don't worry about it. I'll find something new to obsess over in a few weeks, when I've finished the series. Maybe I'll go back to Highlander (left off in the third season), or Gilmore Girls, or Charmed, or the original Battlestar Galactica, or The Six Million Dollar Man (most likely, really), or The Bionic Woman (also likely), or Space: 1999. Or maybe I'll go a little newer and get caught up on Elementary or NCIS -- though it's now been several seasons since I last watched that; when last I tuned in it was the Thanksgiving after Ducky's heart attack, and I stopped watching in the middle of an episode because Abby was really starting to get on my nerves and it occurred to me that if I worked with her I'd probably go out of my way to avoid her.

Today is going to be more of the same as yesterday: recerts. I have several more I need to get through today. Then more undercare and back to the pending. My senior wants to have a meeting about the case I was working on last week; she has a question about one aspect of it. I am afraid that they're going to make me chase down another sum of money before they let the case go through, and I'm not going to be happy about that.

I had an interpreter relay call yesterday with a deaf applicant. It's been a good decade (or more) since I had the last one (which was also my first one). That first interpreter was nasty. If I spoke directly to him, he snapped at me. So I was careful to speak directly to the applicant yesterday, but the interpreter was really nice, and let me know if she was not sure she understood something so as to convey it most accurately. I was curious to know if she was actually seeing the applicant, because she said things like "it looks like s/he's dropped his/her pen" and "hang on, I can't quite make this out." It was interesting, anyway.

Ah, well. Onward and upward, right?
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Jack seems to be over his indisposition -- although he woke me up this morning at 4:30 by hacking up a hairball. No, that's not quite accurate. I was already awake, having forced myself to wake up as a dream tornado was bearing down on me. (I find tornadoes to be the scariest natural occurrence, probably due to seeing The Wizard of Oz as a Very Young Child.) It was actually about ten minutes later that Jack yarked. So I cleaned that up, and decided there was no point whatsoever in going back to bed for twenty minutes, so proceeded with the morning routine.

Jack also yarked his pills this morning, but didn't yark his breakfast, so I gave him replacement pills a little bit ago.

I am going to work this morning. In fact, I am going in early, and I am going out right now to get the car started and warmed up -- it's 9-fucking-degrees-Fahrenheit out there -- but at least there's no wind. Right. Back now.

Jack keeps following me because he understands what the turning the radio on and what the ironing board both mean. Woman is Leaving. Probably Forever. Woe. But may if I follow her everywhere she goes, she'll take me with her!

Yeah, not so much.

Yesterday was, as expected, a quiet day. Also as expected, my brother did not get my message telling him not to bother bringing the Gecko down...and when I explained to him that I was staying home so as to keep a close eye on Jack, he even admitted that the Gecko would be useless as "her face is always in her game." (She has some handheld gaming system which is always on, even when her face is stuck in her laptop.)

I had hoped to be able to write a leisurely LJ Idol entry yesterday (the deadline is this evening), but instead, my brain was eaten up by a fic I'd been working on -- plus, this week's topic (a Wayne Gretsky quote) wasn't easy, and I didn't want to do something as obvious as write about hockey...since I included baseball in the brushback pitch topic. Eventually, after considerable worrying at it, I thought I might be able to do a Sal Alarra/Lightcastle Station piece about how Sal knew the station well enough (having been a maintenance worker for years) to know what was going to fail during the war and shore it up, but that didn't really work even in my head. And then, just like lightning -- say, 1.21 gigawatts' worth -- my brain put together a few words from the quote, along with something I saw on Tumblr (that I think originally came from Twitter) about 2016, and the damned thing fell out of my fingers in fifteen minutes and I posted it right away -- too fast, as it turned out I did have a typo in one spot and a wrong word in another, both of which I corrected.

Weird how that works sometimes.

So that means I don't have to think about it today while I'm working, but can give my whole attention to the thrice-damned case I was going to work on yesterday. I want to get that sucker on my supervisor's desk by the end of the day. By noon would be better, which is part of the reason I'm going in early. If I can get some of the daily routine work out of the way, then I'll have a chance of finishing that case. It's probably not as complicated as I'm fearing; most of the work has already been done; I really just need to do the final calculations and the letters and write out the data entry.

At least...that's what I'm hoping, anyway.

Right. Time to go clean the car off now that it's been running for a few minutes.
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I love it when my outgoing voice mail greeting clearly says that I am going to be out of the office for over a week and people leave messages saying that they want immediate return calls (not just "as soon as possible," but "before the end of the day"). The greeting also says that if they need immediate assistance, they should zero out and ask for my supervisor, but do they? No. *sigh*

My desk wasn't too bad this morning, though I only made it through the backlog of morning reports and emails. (I really need to start telling the facilities to start contacting Co-Conspirator M about cases that are in her letter group, even if the information they're looking for is in the period when I was the worker. She needs to be able to answer these questions, too.) I didn't even touch the week's worth of snail mail, and though I wrote down my voice mail messages, I didn't have a chance to return more than a couple. I was busy enough that long about the time I thought it was time for midmorning break it was actually noon.

I came home at lunchtime to find that the rest of the driveway had been shoveled. See? It directly benefited my brother to clean out the rest of the driveway because he had to get into it. Ergoipsofactoepluribusunum, the driveway got shoveled. Unlike last week, when I could really have used the help and got none.

And, no, I didn't ask. Because I've known him for forty-seven years, and I know better than to bother.

In other news, now that I have bought two replacement rolls of packing tape, I found the original roll. It was upstairs on my dresser. I finally saw it this morning. At first, I had no idea how it got there, then about half an hour ago I suddenly remembered that I took it up there when I was switching out my summer and winter clothing last week; I taped labels on the storage tubs. I never looked upstairs because I knew that the tape never went upstairs. Oops.

Brrrr

Dec. 22nd, 2016 08:46 am
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I am sitting here this morning thinking about how nice it would be if women's clothing were truly warm. I am wearing a tank top under a mock turtleneck under a heavy sweater over a pair of sweatpants and am still not as warm as I would like. I was looking in my drawers this morning for something warm to wear and all I had were office-worthy sweaters (i. e., not at all heavy) and sweatshirts that are not suitable for wearing out. Normally it wouldn't bother me, but I have numerous errands to run today -- lucky Jack is going to Go For A Ride! -- and then I'm going out to dinner tonight. As it is, I think that the sweater I am wearing (which I got at a garage sale some years ago) is actually a men's sweater. It's a heavy cable knit in navy blue and I have to roll the sleeves back by the whole width of the cuffs.

I have also come to the conclusion that it is time to let go of all the When I Lose Weight clothing. I own some lovely things that I have always hoped to size back down into, but they're just taking up space, and I'm not going to lose enough weight ever to fit into size twelve jeans again because I was 110 pounds when I wore those, and not entirely finished growing. I came to this conclusion when I realized this morning that I am missing at least one tub of winter clothing and I can't find it. I have many tubs of clothing, and when I opened them, they're all Stuff I Grew Out Of. I'll allow myself to keep one tub's worth of things (like that pink sweater with the navy stripe that I adore), but otherwise? Time to go.

Sorting it all will give me something to do on my vacation....

There is so much to be done today and tomorrow to get ready for company on Sunday. The bathroom needs to be cleaned, the addition needs to be dusted and straightened, I need to make sure I have enough chairs, otherwise I'll have to have someone bring a couple, the kitchen needs to be spiffed, the living room needs to be vacuumed and possibly dusted. The Bat Catching Kit can probably be relocated to the garage for now (a box with a clear glass dish to cover a resting bat, a tupperware container for if the bat is on a wall or similar instead of a shelf or floor, a piece of glass from a picture frame to slide under the container, and a badminton racket for desperate measures. I would never use that last, but a friend at work insisted that I must have one). The chair that the Gecko favors (the one I'm going to have to burn when I no longer require her services) needs to have its coverings laundered and possibly a good spraying with Febreeze. And maybe -- just maybe -- I'll clean up my writing desk which has a coloring project spread out all over it.

Speaking of which, yesterday was the office Christmas party. My unit ordered lunches from my favorite place (Caribbean salad, yum!), and then had a gift exchange of the sort where you pick your gift from a pile and the next person in line can either steal yours or pick a new one and so on. Last year when we did this, we had numerous steals, but this year, only one person stole a gift from someone else, and the last person to go ended up with her own gift and was happy enough. But the reason that talking about coloring projects reminded me is because I took a coloring book and box of colored pencils as my gift. I came home with a nice houndstooth checked scarf. Not too shabby. And I had Caribbean salad for supper, too. (Those suckers are BIG.)

I finished Murder in Montparnasse last night, and realized that I forgot to add a finished book to my list, so I only need to read two more to make it to my goal for this year. I might be able to manage that now that vacation is here at last....
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  • I am a terrible, terrible person. I bought a $10 box of totally non-denominational "season's greetings" / "joy of winter" cards just so I could send one to my aunt in Texas. They're very pretty cards, all silvery and pale blue and glittery -- and they will make her fundie head explode. Apparently, this year, I am a foot soldier in the war on Christmas.

  • The long, long story of my grandmother's emergency room bill has not yet ended. She got a pre-collection notice from them at some point in the last week; when I walked in to visit her the other night, she greeted me with, "Well, we're getting sued." I was under the impression that the entire process -- once the insurance nightmare was straightened out -- was automatic and that I would not have to contact the billing company again. Apparently, I was mistaken. So I spent an hour the other morning composing and then faxing a letter to them to formally request that they rebill Medicare. Morons.

  • No, that's not fair. They're just doing what they should. Medicare denied the claim. Still, it's aggravating, since they were the ones who told me it would all be automatic.

  • I found my iTunes library on my old laptop. I will hopefully have no difficulty transferring it to the new laptop. Apparently it has been some years since I last added music to it. Well...I don't buy music often. Once it was charged, the laptop started with no difficulties. Really, the only problem with it is that it runs Win95. I elected to buy a new one since it was already getting on in years when MS announced that they weren't going to support Win95 any longer.

  • MyAuntie told me on her visit in October that she likes jade -- I was wearing the jade pendant I bought during the cruise in August -- so I ordered her a jade piece for Christmas. It arrived with a 25% off coupon, so I ordered myself a pair of earrings to go with the pendant. Both orders arrived with a small polished jade nugget. I really, really like the one that came with the earrings. It is perhaps three-quarters of an inch long and maybe three-quarters of that high, with smooth, rounded edges and corners. It is satisfyingly weighty, and I found myself cluthing it and running it through my fingers for the whole time I was on the computer last evening. It feels good in the hand. Very nice. And the earrings are pretty, too.

  • MyAuntie has sent everyone a Jacquie Lawson advent calendar again this year. One of the activities in this year's calendar is a game sort of along the same lines as Bubble Poke, except with Christmas ornaments. The idea is to smash as many ornaments as you can as you move through ten levels. There have to be three contiguous ornaments of the same color for smashing, and if there aren't, then you lose. It is amazingly therapeutic. I find myself returning to it over and over and over again. Yesterday morning, I beat the game. But it's not really a game of skill; it's all random. Still. I am quite fond of it, but I suppose it won't be accessible after the end of the Christmas season.

  • For the second week in a row, my garbage can hasn't been completely emptied. There's a bag of kitty litter at the very bottom of the can. I think they're just reaching into the can and lifting out the kitchen bag and leaving the large black bag in the bottom, possibly because they can't see it's there in the dark. This week, there was a second bag of kitty litter, and that's gone, so I'm not sure what's going on. I suppose it could be stuck in there, but I'd think if they were putting the can on the lift, it would empty properly. The can is large enough -- you could hide a body in there -- that the only way for me to get at the bag to check is to tip it on its side and crawl in there...and that is not happening.

  • I need to remember to get the gas can out of the shed and put it in the garage; the forecast is calling for Lots O' Snow and I'm pretty sure that the snowblower was run out of gas. And the shed doors get stuck, so....

  • Ugh. Snow.

  • I hate the automated line at Prudential. I generally have to call it at least once a month, and it's voice-activated. The problem is that it can only pick up my voice about half the time...and this week is apparently not in that half. I had to call yesterday and ended up faxing a request. This morning, I threw down the receiver while announcing to everyone in the vicinity, "Oh, for fuck's sake!" Which no one apparently heard, despite the volume, because apparently only dogs can hear my voice. And then only sometimes.

  • I have been watching Emergency! lately on Netflix. I used to watch it when I was a little girl. My brother and I used to play Paramedics with an old plastic tool box that we acquired from somewhere. That was way back before my brother turned into an asshole. Ah, the good old days. It's...interesting. The characters all look older to me than their stated ages: "Rampart, we have a male, approximately 40 years of age...." Yeah, he looks 60 to me. Of course, the show aired in the '70s, and I think maybe people weren't quite as obsessed with looking younger, then. Hard to say, since I was about 8 at the time.
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I have just come in from the garage where I was collapsing cardboard boxes and stuffing them into the recycling bin to go out to the curb tonight. (Well, to the foot of the driveway, anyway, since there are no curbs in my neighborhood, since it is technically country.) The recycling bin is now full, so I was tossing loose papers and small boxes on top, when I came to the box of cigar boxes that HTWIWM had squirreled away in the basement...and I paused. I can see the appeal of keeping them around. Even the plain cardboard ones are nice, but the ones made of thin wood? Those are really nice, and I could recover them in wrapping paper or Contact Paper or fabric and make really nice boxes out of them. And goodness knows, even thin boxes can be useful to have around -- especially when one is a hoarder connoisseur of office supplies such as myself.

And so the cigar boxes were spared....

Since this is my 9-5 week, evening time is at a premium. Monday night, I did just come home and collapse because Monday was One Of Those Days. The phone rang off the hook and I was constantly being interrupted. People came in to see me and stayed an hour. One Of Those Days. Last night, I came home and rushed to mow the front yard (and mulch the leaves under the maple tree) before it a) rained, and b) the mower ran out of gas. Fortunately, I managed both, though the air was so heavy it felt like it was already raining -- even though no actual water fell from the sky until well after dark. But that meant that I didn't really have time for messing about with the dumpster and hauling more stuff.

Fortunately, I knew that would be the case, so yesterday morning, I hauled a bunch more stuff upstairs -- some of the stuff that HTWIWM had collected for Halloween staging. He had almost an entire shelving unit stuffed with old radio parts, things with lots of dials and scopes and switches and so forth, all very '40s-ish. I hauled them all out to the curb yesterday, figuring if he liked them for Halloween, maybe someone else would. And if no one took them by the time I got home from work, then I'd toss them in the dumpster. They were still there at lunchtime, but gone in the evening.

This morning, I didn't haul anything new up, just spent some time dealing with what got hauled up yesterday (other than the Mad Scientist stuff), which was mostly empty cardboard boxes which were mostly put down there by me back when I was still selling things on eBay. HTWIWM is not entirely to blame for the mess down there -- only mostly. Like 95%.

I went upstairs a little bit ago to scoop the litter box only to find it unused. But I could smell ammonia.... So I went hunting in the Spare Oom with the blacklight, but couldn't find any new spots. Nor could I find any wet spots. I guess at some point, I'm going to have to rent a carpet cleaner and take all the furniture out of that room (fortunately, not much and nothing I can't manage on my own) and simply clean the carpet within an inch of its life.

I expect today to be a bit quiet in the office since a good chunk of my unit has to go to Buffalo for training. I'm hoping it's everyone in my corner so maybe I'll have a little peace today. That would be nice, since I have a lot of old cases I need to get through. And a lot of new ones for that matter....
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When last we left our intrepid heroine, she was knee-deep in Too Much Work, but she has since managed to get it down to shin-deep. Still there, though. If next week is quiet, though, it'll likely get caught up by the end of the week. Two weeks off, two weeks to get caught up...seems fair. Of course, then we're looking at lots of time with nothing to do, which I really don't like.

So, yes. Busy week, and when I came home from work, I mostly just collapsed -- after walking the dog, of course. As a result, my house is still a mess from vacation. My luggage is still in the backroom and the dining room table (also in the back room) is buried under the detritus of both packing and unpacking. I intend to do something about that today, though I would also like to finish up editing my photos (I'm in the middle of the whale watch photos, so I'm doing a lot of cropping at the moment), and spend time outdoors because it's supposed to be a glorious day and we have reached the part of the summer where glorious days are precious.

The last few days have been downright pleasant: low humidity, sunshine, but temperatures only in the 70s. If the long range forecast can be believed, however, it's supposed to be gradually warmer each day for the next week until it reaches nearly 90° again. We shall see what we shall see, I guess.

I mowed the yard yesterday. As I expected, it took hours, and four tanks of gas. It wouldn't have taken quite so long, of course, if I didn't allow the mower to cool down between running it out of gas and refilling the tank -- it steams and/or smokes if I refill it while it's hot, and that makes me a little nervous, what with gasoline being slightly flammable and all, and my face being so near it. (Remind me to tell you about the reason I no longer have a propane grill.) I wasn't going to do the whole yard because the laundry was hanging out to dry, so I couldn't do the whole section over which the laundry lines run, but I went out for dinner last night with BFT and J1 and the laundry was dry before I left, so I took it down. When I got home, the mower was still out and the laundry was in the house...so I finished it up so I wouldn't have to deal with it today. Which is actually a relief and a half. There is nothing I have to do today, so if I want a pajama day, I can have one...though I'm already dressed, since I had to take Jack walkies. But I could put my jammies back on again! I could!

Still coughing, but it's pretty much a nagging, remainder cough -- except at night, of course. It's always worse at night. But I have managed to go to sleep the last few nights without chemical intervention. Still, I hope it goes away soon because I don't want to have to reschedule getting that cavity filled again. It just seems like such a bad idea to be having dental work done when you can't predict when or if you'll have to cough. I am obviously still not 100%, though, as I am still sleeping much later if I don't set my alarm. This morning, for instance, I slept until nearly 7:00 a.m., when I normally get up between 5:00 and 5:30 on weekdays, and between 5:30 and 6:00 if I don't set an alarm.

BFT and I were comparing symptoms last night at dinner and it seems likely that it was merely coincidence that we were both sick because her symptoms were flu-like and mine were completely not. J1 marveled that we both came back sick because she and J2 were fine, but BFT pointed out that they get out a lot more than either of us, so get exposed to many, many more people (and germs) than do we, and are likely hardier because of it. I think there's a fault in that logic somewhere (because I work at the Department of Social Services, for instance, and even though I don't see my clients, I see my coworkers who see their clients), but whatever. We got sick and they didn't. Nor did their parents. Oh, well. Would still go on another cruise.

My sister tells me that she yelled at the Gecko to take a shower and put on clean clothing on the day that the Gecko spent extra time here because Bird was driving to Maryland to fetch Niece for visitation. Bird also informed her that she should spend some of her extra pay (Bird paid her for that extra time) on getting a non-drivers ID, then get herself enrolled in school to do something with her life. The Gecko did smell noticeably less nasty when I took her home on that Monday morning, but it didn't last. By last week, she was unwashed and wearing the same clothing she'd been wearing for a fortnight again, so that I could tell she'd been sleeping on my throw pillows. I swear she does it on purpose: I usually take the throw pillows off the couch in the morning, but on those days that I don't, she seems to always lie down on the couch and take a nap, so of course I can smell her on my pillows. Gross -- and unwashable on some of them because the covers don't come off. At least some of them came from garage sales, so it's not a huge expense if I have to throw them out.

I finally stopped to see Grama the other afternoon. I'd finished the antibiotics and wasn't coughing quite as much, so figured it was safe to go in (there's a huge sign on the door that advises people who are sick to stay the hell out because of the vulnerable population). She was delighted to see me, and I got to tell her the Saga Of The Missing Luggage, and show her the few photos on my phone. I should probably go back with Jack this weekend, but don't think I'm going to make it.

Possibly because it is now September and fall is coming, but I am getting antsy about the house again. I asked on FB if anyone knew of a good handyman, and got the usual crickets. The first response was just someone clicking the "like" button. What good is that? That doesn't help at all. *sigh* My sister said she'd ask Number Five, but I don't like Number Five. I was iffy about him before, but when he forebade her to have Jack in the house -- despite the fact that he knows Jack won't do any damage as long as there is a person in the house -- well, that made up my mind for me. (And that was before I learned that they fly a Confederate flag. Ugh.) Still, I suppose if he's willing to help, I can feed him pizza and beer just as easily as I can feed my friends.
malinaldarose: (Default)
Monday. Why is it always Monday? I didn't sleep well (after the excitement -- fight or flight -- of the bat), plus I didn't get to bed until an hour or more after my usual bedtime, plus it was Sunday night, when I often don't sleep well, anyway. So I'm not particularly bright and shiny this morning.

One of the things I am doing this week is a bit of cleaning so that I don't return home to a mess. I was vacuuming yesterday and moved the chair in the living room to clean behind it -- after picking up all of the bits of litter in front of it. I found another pile of used Q-Tip ends, a drink-mix tube, and a sunflower seed. I knew, of course, that she completely ignored my prohibition on eating in the living room, but the sunflower seed really pissed me off. And then I found the cup ring on my piano.

She's been putting drinks on my piano. There's a TV tray right next to the chair and it's there for a reason! And still she puts things on the piano. I also noticed that she's been shoving things on the bookshelf on the other side of the chair out of her way; my little Eiffel Tower figure was knocked all askew and there was a dead mechanical pencil on the shelf.

I am not happy. Did I mention that I was not happy. She is such a useless waste of protoplasm. Honestly, I think I'd be better off to invest in a Resuci-Annie and prop it in that chair.

Sigh.

Mr. and/or Ms. Bat was gone from where I left him and/or her last evening. I was a bit worried because after I set him and/or her on the ground and lifted the baking dish away (and this time, I'm going to hang onto it for the next Bat Emergency because there will be another one), he and/or she just laid and/or crouched there. I hope he and/or she wasn't sick and carried off by one of the feral cats, but I suspect that he and/or she was just stunned because the first time I tried to move him and/or her, before I decided to find something sturdier than cardboard, he and/or she set up such a racket. He and/or she was absolutely outraged and was chittering so loudly that I could hear it across the room (even muffled by Pyrex), and I could count all of his and/or her teeny little teeth. (Picture a teeny-tiny Fizzgig with wings.) So I think he and/or she probably deafened him- and/or herself.

I am hoping today will be quiet at work. I have a meeting this morning, which will, I hope, be short, on how to process spousal long term home health care applications -- there's always some confusion about those, so this is probably a good thing. I want to comb through another section of the SSI cases, and, of course, I need to get my recerts and undercare finished since I won't be around for payroll this month. (Payroll is next Friday, and I'll be in Alaska. Darn.) And my senior started bugging me on Friday about getting pending cases done, even though my pending is really low (since the caseload split) and the ones she's bugging me about aren't due until the end of the month, so I have at least a week and a half after I get back to finish them -- and I've told her repeatedly that I won't deny cases ten days into the process when I have forty-five to get them done, dammit. (Granted, if people haven't responded within those first ten days, it's likely they won't, but jeez.)

Right. I need to go write a note for a gecko informing her that she is not to put things on my piano. And then I need to go hunt up some coasters for when she does it anyway. Stupid cow.
malinaldarose: (Default)
Well, that's it for Number Five, as far as I'm concerned. It has been arranged for months that my sister would take care of Jack while I'm away on the cruise. We had pretty much decided that she would leave Jack at my house during the day while she's at work and take him home with her in the evenings. Number Five, however, has decreed that Jack isn't to be in his house. He is apparently afraid that Jack will do to his house what he did to my house...despite the fact that Number Five has personal experience of how well-behaved Jack is when he is not left alone -- and he would never be left alone in their house.

Eh, doesn't really matter; Bird can either camp at my house or at Grama's. I think she's decided to camp at Grama's; if so, we'll just have the Ravening Gecko sit Jack at Gram's house for that week.

I haven't ever been close to any of Bird's numerous husbands, and I guess I won't be making an exception for this one, either.
---
This week started out with a dentist appointment -- just a routine cleaning, until.... The hygienist found a cavity, quite by accident. The weird thing is that it is in the tooth where I keep getting cavities. My first cavity was in that tooth (my last molar), caused by my wisdom tooth crowding it (because I refused to have my wisdom teeth out until the x-rays showed that cavity. My next cavity was in that tooth, so the filling was expanded. Now I have a third cavity...there's already more filling than tooth back there....

I hadn't noticed any sensitivity back there, but I note that it is a little sore back there this morning. My appointment for the filling isn't for two weeks; it'll be the last day of my vacation (after we're back from the cruise). Yay?
---
I am waiting for the washer to finish. Because I bought some new clothes for the trip recently, I decided I'd do two days of laundry (because the loads are larger than usual, and I only have so much room on my clotheslines and drying racks). I am doing darks today, and I started the load over an hour ago -- another reason I don't like this washer. It's far slower than the old one; even with two rinses, I'd've had the laundry on the line already. Sounds like it's just revving up to spin now, so I will probably be late for work this morning because I'm not leaving the load in the washer until lunchtime....

My supervisor yesterday jokingly asked me if I was in love because I was getting all spiffed up lately -- I wore a dress last week, makeup on Tuesday, and a skirt yesterday. I explained that I had just bought new clothes for the trip and was trying them out. (The makeup, too.) Love, after all, is for children....

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