I went to go to post that OMG I FOUND MY KEYS I FOUND MY KEYS and realized that my further annoyance about lyme and doxy and stuff I thought had posted on probably Monday or Tuesday in fact did not post. Hence no forthcoming comments. Anyway, that's below, and somewhat old news since my current whining is about eating with doxy. But!
OMG I FOUND MY KEYS I FOUND MY KEYS the main keychain that had gone missing in a 5 min run in and out of the apartment that had my bikeshare fob (fortunately can use credit card but more cumbersome) and that had my MAILBOX KEY (far more important; I had my mail held at the post office the last couple weeks lest it get sent back) and less importantly but still annoying, my music quality earplugs. As well as someone else's key who wouldn't be happy. In my final packing for Missouri visit / eclipse I decided to grab my normal binocs for during totality presuming we aren't clouded. And the keys were somehow next to that shelving, only visible with me sitting on the floor looking into the bottom part of the shelving. I've been using my backup house and car keys since the end of the Fringe Festival, and fortunately had made a new dup of the car a week prior.
I'd just yesterday come close to buying a new bikeshare fob, and did make another dup of my house key. Timing, we has it.
Re the lyme stuff, tired. Been on the doxy since Monday night; i don't remember it being nearly this annoying re timing of eating before, but I was keeping different hours then and probably not sweating the empty stomach quite as much. And didn't know that green smoothies are full of calcium then either. I think I'm going to buy some probiotics. Figure tired (have had my share of Mandatory Nap Land) in the last couple weeks is a combination of actually starting to do the for reals Lyme thing some time in between "no I don't have symptoms i want a titer anyway" til now; learned in the past week that feeling crappy with some fever maybe 4 or so weeks out is pretty classic, and if you look a few posts back I had that right on time.
Have sent a note about that back to doc's office; don't hugely care how they respond, as I'm currently treating appropriately. It doesn't look like the ID society has particularly different guidelines, but <a href=https://www.hopkinsarthritis.org/
OneMed responded last night that they'd forward to my PCP (the one on record I'd been thinking to change, who hasn't seen me in rather some while). I'll decide in the next couple weeks whether there's much need to try to seek any official second opinion. IDDocFriend reminded me that most people treat and it's fine, and even if it isn't fully fine it isn't standardly Ruined His Knee or Tried To Eat Her Brain - I seem to just know a bunch in that subset.
Gotta finish packing.
Original post, that I'd been mildly surprised nobody was saying anything about:
Subj: Y'know it really bothers me
- that I had to argue to get a lyme titer in the first place, with the assertion being that the 200mg doxy i took on the way down the mountain should have handled it. Because Oh Noes I Might Then Have to Rx for a couple weeks [the same antibiotics in the same dose that dermatologists put people on for months and months, and that I used for similar purposes for months and months before getting sick of the food restrictions]
- that the titer came back as indicative of recent infection
- that while CDC recs apparently say 10-21 days, other research indicates an at best 50-80% success rate at 21 days or less
- that seriously, they want to dick around with, no joke, potentially my entire future health over a week or two of an antibiotic that I had a month's worth in my fridge, originally written with 3 refills, except it was filled in 2013 and doxy is one of the few things that maybe becomes toxic when too old. (It'd been written by a dermatologist when I was breaking out a lot; I'd balked at the price, but later filled it in order to have it available for the prophylactic dose after camping.)
Fortunately there are other ways to acquire a more full course, but of course that means pointing out this is fscking insane is something I can't actually do, because then I have to admit going around them. Or maybe not; I suppose i can have some of this argument in the next few weeks.
I also jogged down (by bicycle) towards REI. I see that parts of that area are still completely and utterly torn to bits with various construction projects.
The REI trip was motivated by a desire to get a "sport top" for a HydroFlask water bottle that was recently given to me. I also wound up doing some bike part shopping, specifically for a new bike rack. Everyday pannier use in combination with my previous Blackburn rear rack has led to a lot of wear and tear on the Jolly Roger's rear fender stays, to the degree that the fender now rubs against the tire anytime I attach a pannier to the rear rack. Fender stays just aren't meant to provide lateral support to panniers.
I struck out at the Montlake Bike Shop, but I think the Topeak rack I got from REI is the exact same model I have on Froinlavin, so I am pleased and optimistic that it will help in the long term.
Three of the crucial but subtle differences:
1. The rear supports on the Topeak are flush with the edge of the rack. On the Blackburn, the rearmost supports are recessed and don't provide any side support for panniers. As I looked around, I noticed that multiple rack brands have recessed rear support, and I have no idea why anyone would do that other than for aesthetic or manufacturing reasons. The Montlake Bike Shop had a couple of racks for touring purposes, but they lacked hook points near the rack base for hooking my Overland panniers in place.
2. The total height of the Topeak is shorter, which means that I can hook my antique Overland panniers onto it properly.
3. The Topeak has a rear bracket that perfectly fits my rear rack light. On the Blackburn, I had to find a pair of metal clips to attach the light, and then had to add zip-ties to keep the whole arrangement from rattling like crazy.
I may still have to do something about the pannier-fender situation, but I am pleased with the rack.
Tomorrow, we ride. To Bellingham.
I think this must have been what Frodo & Bilbo felt like after wearing the Ring too much.
Regarding the video of fascist Christopher Cantwell melting down:
1) This is pretty great viewing, particularly after seeing the Vice video which featured this gutless bully.
2) His expressions of surprise are very striking. He's actually shocked that people are mad at him! He really thought he could play weekend nazi and not be the bad guy. Behold the danger of living in an echo chamber!
3) He also can't believe how persistent his enemies are. He believed his own propaganda that the left is a bunch of pushovers. Surprise, fuckface! I find it particularly telling that he seems 100% terrified of Chelsea Manning. He forgot that she had the courage to go to prison and be branded a traitor for life to do what she thought was right -- and then to come out as a trans woman. Goosestepper McGee here will never even come close to matching that kind of moral fortitude and physical bravery, and I think maybe he's starting to realize that.
4) This is a terrible cancer that will destroy society, but there is still a window in which it can be stopped. Fascist jerkoffs like him will fold if they face real opposition. We just need to provide it.
I took Friday off, inspired by an errand i needed to run and, with the day cleared, i decided to spend the morning with my nephew & niece. We had breakfast at the classic small town restaurant (blueberry waffle & banana pancake for them, respectively, hashbrowns & eggs for us), a little visit to our home where they hadn't been for a while, and then -- yay, i found my beading tools! -- to their house for playing with beads for a bit. It was lovely, and now that i have all my kit, i should do it again in an organized way. Also, when my sister is there, so we can use her beads, too.
I'd made a bit of a mess trying to find stuff, so i spent some of Saturday in the residual moving task of sorting out jumbled stuff. We have many residual moving tasks lingering. I also fixed some jewelry of Christine's i'd said i'd fix and made the necklace and earrings to go with my Easter dress with the faceted yellow chalcedony and vermeil links and pendants i bought with birthday money from my grandmother. The dress is a 50s influenced, A-line dress in a print of lemons, so this necklace and earrings is a sparkling accent for that.
--== ∞ ==--
The week is flying by. Sunday i stopped by my parents after meeting, where "stopped by" means driving an extra 35 or more minutes. My parents are in the opposite direction of meeting. Later, as i was spraying my yellow squash and other cucurbits with a milk-soap-baking soda mixture, my dad stopped by to take a look at the crack in the slab in our front porch. He agreed with my assessment that the "fix" someone had applied in the past was part of the problem. He also knew a much better way to repair it than someone had told Christine. (That instruction was to essentially replicate the bad repair.) He confirmed it was a cosmetic and not particularly structural issue, and wouldn't stop thinking about the issue until he came up with a cause for the crack.
We also have an issue with the light that is not quite over the island in the kitchen: i think "Mr Handyman," the previous owner, caulked the halogen light bulb into the socket. I am happy for the excuse to replace the otherwise attractive but poorly located pendant lamp with a ceiling fan with lights.
Yesterday, my niece and nephew stayed with us during their parents' workday. They had to entertain themselves mostly, but over lunch we made oobleck, a non-newtonian fluid with interesting shear properties. That is, we mixed one part water with around two parts corn starch and examined how the behavior changed when you stirred it slowly vs quickly and a variety of other messy experiments. My favorite was watching an apparently solid chunk fly out of the container, hit me, bounce off, land on the counter and then slowly melt into a puddle.
Making gravy will never quite be the same.
I tried mowing last night, but somehow our lawnmower has lost the adjustments to the front two wheels and all one can really do is scalp the grass. There are some areas where that is desirable, but it was even scalping the moss, which isn't.
It's miserably humid, by the way. Miraculously the forecast for Monday is "clear", although the detailed prediction for Brevard, NC is 50% cloud cover in the afternoon. I've been trying to pretend like it's no big deal and have not been practicing camera stuff, etc. I guess i ought to be getting out the eclipse glasses and filters now, though.
This morning I was thinking, well, I can just show up at stuff. I don't have to be on any committee or board, I don't have to stress myself out by having one more ball to juggle. I can just show up when I can.
So today, I signed up to get the newsletter from Lansing Indivisible. They hold meetings in the library every other Sunday, and I work every Sunday, so no meetings for me. But I'll read their newsletters and show up for things that happen when I'm not working or in class.
It feels like nothing, but I know that it's really, really something.
All these stories are well-written and thought-provoking. I particularly liked the one by Ursula Vernon, which reminded me about her story Pocosin which I loved, and led me to find her whole book online Summer in Orcas. Highly recommended all around!
Just noticed there is a live Kickstarter for Summer in Orcas in case you love the online book and want one of your very own. I now have a paperback coming to me sometime, yay!
I also recently backed Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction / Uncanny Magazine and the bonus for backing this is I get emailed a bunch of great essays by people with disabilities about what SF means to them.
YOUR FIRST NAME
+ YOUR LAST
NAME = YOUR
A friend posted it from the author Amy Stewart's Facebook page. I like the meme because it worked on me exactly the way it was supposed to work – my eye skimmed over it (ah, one of those name memes), stopped on “Nazi-fighting”, then went back to scan the first line and register the joke.
I like, too, the implication of adequacy here – no need to take on another identity or a new name. Your name is enough as it is. You're already ready.
And look at the cleverness of that line break: "+ YOUR LAST / NAME" – expecting some quirky interpolation of randomness (possibly designed to help hack password recovery questions) – last food eaten, last book read – we find instead just what we already possess.
(The text was probably just centred in a box of fixed size, but that doesn't make me wrong. It just makes me an English major.)
Silliness aside, I like the simplicity of this call to arms.
Went to the GP's surgery to pick up my repeat prescription this morning.
"Oh, we haven't done that," says the receptionist. "I was trying to get in touch with you yesterday," (the phone never rang) "It's too early"
Me: "Hang on, we're half way through week 3 of a 4 week prescription and I'm going on holiday* tomorrow."
Receptionist: "It's due on the 29th"
Me: "And I'll run out on the 28th"
Her: "And we'd fill it that week. When did you say you were going on holiday?"
Me: "Tomorrow. In the morning"
She then proposed getting it signed off during the afternoon and me coming back for it (they theoretically shut at noon on Wednesday, and it was after 11:30), but then changed her mind, her terminal must have flagged the doctor was free, and walked it through there and then.
It's never been this complicated before!
Just to make things even more fun, I'd taken crutches rather than the chair and started to feel very wobbly in the middle of all of this. Hopefully just lack of sleep, I crashed when I got home and has to go to bed for a couple of hours. Which meant I didn't get around to going to the chemists til late afternoon. It's a straight roll down a slight incline from where I park, which is just as well as my pushing was pretty crap today. I suspect my shoulders aren't entirely happy after the shed re-roofing, plus my tyres needed blowing up. Getting the prescription was trouble-free, but pushing back up the slope wasn't going to happen, so I got out and used the chair as a walker. That wouldn't have been a problem if my legs hadn't decided to go very wobbly in the middle of the damned road! Fortunately with no cars about.
* Up to see the folks, Dad turns 80 on Saturday, so expect my presence to be intermittent for the rest of the month.
I mailed a four-figure back tax payment on the 7th to Ogden, UT via the usual first class mail. It was cashed on the 11th. There's no way it took fewer than two days to get there.
The more consistent rowing schedule is starting to pay off, which feels very rewarding. One of the elements of rowing that I have found very difficult if not impossible to replicate off the water is its effects on some of the deep postural muscles of the lower back and hips. In particular, when one reaches the release, one sits with straight or nearly-straight legs and a tall back with a slight bit of layback (leaning back towards the bow).
I believe this position requires good strength from the iliacus and psoas major, which then initiate the forward motion on the recovery as one comes up to take the next stroke. It takes a while to get these muscles firing correctly, to ensure that one's weight is rock-solid and centered in the bottom of the boat, and that one comes out of the bow well. It's important to maintain as low a center of gravity as possible to help stabilize the boat. There's an understandable common misconception among many novice rowers that it's the shoulders and oars that determine the boat's balance. Those things matter, too, and so does timing, but top priority should go to the low center of gravity. You can feel this difference quickly if you ever have a chance to sit in a boat with an experienced rower, where somehow the boat feels magically rock-solid. It isn't the boat - it's that rower's body and muscles holding the boat in the ideal position so that all the rest of one's energy can be channeled into moving the boat forward. The experienced rower will get fatigued if you are making the boat flop all over the place, so all rowers should work to help contribute to that aspect of balance.
I would love to see an x-ray of my spine at some point, because I'm certain it's weird (scoliosis at least), and made worse from those years in high school when I only rowed starboard. For whatever reason, rowing helps it tremendously, and that's one of the fundamental reasons I want to keep rowing for as long as possible.
On Sunday, at one point while I was heading towards the BRPC dock, I noticed that the bowman of the Old Man Double* was filming me. Two seconds of film and I know that I need to keep working on my catch speed. He said that they had rowed 180 km the previous week, in an effort to shed weight before Master's Nationals**, and that all the rowing had done wonders for their balance.
I was actually able to best The Brit this morning during longer intervals pieces (two sixteen-minute sets of 90 seconds on, 30 seconds off). He says he's a wimp in the wind. We shall see. He'll have an extra week to train on his own while I'm up in Seattle on a bicycle. Now I am tired. Ka-whumph.
*He should really get nicknamed The Captain. His partner will be Marathon Man.
**Argh, I just hope they are being careful about this.
It's a bit of a handful, managing three people at three different stages. Students need a large up-front time investment when they first get underway, which is fun but requires extra time and patience.
There's also C, who has been working long-distance this summer on a video analysis project, and A, who is wrapping up an intense year-long project on cricket flight. Five undergraduates is a large team, for me, but I feel good about what we have been able to accomplish here.
GPs' surgery: Hey, sign up for online appointments and repeat prescriptions.*
Try to use it for a repeat prescription for the first time
System: You have no repeat prescriptions available.
Me: Hi, I tried to get a repeat prescription and it wouldn't have it.
Surgery: Ah, that's because it's a controlled drug and the system doesn't handle those.
It's the only bloody prescription I have! Talk about being as much use as a chocolate teapot!!
* That was the occasion when the receptionist took one look at my handwriting and decided to fill in the form for me.
Having just finished it (not to mention the Hannah Arendt books I read earlier in the year) sure did put this weekend's events in sharp contrast. I'm not sure there is any greater civic obligation than standing up to these fascist fucks in any way possible.
One semi-tangential thought: The Soviet Union did literally everything possible to ruin their economy, to make any creative or productive act not only impossible, but actively punished. Yet while they did manage to starve several million people to death in the process, shit still got done. They fought off the Nazis and were in space just 20 years later. That's an extreme contrast that deserves explanation! It makes me wonder if the modern obsession with productivity and incentives might be completely unfounded.