Regaining Weight

Tuesday, 23 May 2017 22:24
liralen: Finch Painting (Default)
[personal profile] liralen
One of the interesting things was that when I first started down the competitive path, I lost about 15 pounds of weight from my high of about 172 lbs, during the worst of the stressful days of moderating. Then, over the course of the six months of competitive, I got down to about 150 lbs.

I'm not a small woman to begin with, I'm 5'9", and I did and still do construction, so 150 was kind of frightening. The only time I'd ever hit that weight since my late 20's was also during my moderatorship, when I'd gone four months on extreme stress and got to the point where I came down with vertigo before I could actually stop and rest for a week. I regained my weight fairly quickly with actual sleep and food.

I did that again.

Within two weeks of quitting competitive, where I was cooking again, lifting again, and went from doing about 3000 steps on average per day to doing about 7500 a day now, I got back up to 155. Now I'm at 158 and steady with the usual daily fluctuations as I had been before all these adventures. The interesting thing is that even with the weight gain, I still fit into my skinny clothes, so I suspect that a lot of the weight regaining was mostly muscle mass that had atrophied when I wasn't moving around all that much and forgetting to eat. I went from getting breathless just going for a walk to being able to do my usual three mile walk easily.

Read more... )
commodorified: very worried stuffed crocodile clutching a pillow (not coping)
[personal profile] commodorified
Since I'm half-packed and we're leaving in less than 24 hours it's probably time to announce that I am coming to WisCon. (Now watch me wake up tomorrow with Lorayne's cold or something.)

I'm not signed up for any panels, I'm not volunteering this year. I'm not 100 percent sure that this isn't going to end in disaster again. Depending on how I react to the various allergens in Madison I may be very low-energy, I may be sneezy and stuffed-up, I may be spending a lot of time asleep, I may be slow and forgetful due to being low oxygen, I may recuse myself rapidly from controversy or trouble if I don't see an immediate way to be useful.

I may have to leave panels abruptly due to coughing fits. We may be leaving town abruptly to get me back to Canada for treatment. (My out-of-province insurance isn't going to cover me for another serious asthma event in the same damn' city as the last one. That's kind of the definition of 'pre-existing'). We have a plan for this. It's as solid as we can make it.

Or we may have trouble at the border and not get there at all.

Or it all may be just fine. I really don't know. There's no way to tell.

But I'm on a new med (Singulair), and taking ALL the other ones, religiously, and so far my lungs seem to be willing to stay fairly functional. I'm bringing my bike. I'm hoping to stay an extra week and see friends. I'm cautiously optomistic.

A small request: if you see me, and we're friends, and you possibly can, grab me for coffee or food or a quick chat? This is almost certainly my last WisCon for some time, and if I do have a dangerous reaction, it's my last WisCon, period.

I know that I've lost touch with a lot of you due to missing the con and generally being offline and preoccupied trying to get my health under control. I'm sorry about it, and I'd really like to connect this weekend if we can, because you all are one of the communities of my heart, and to be honest I'm coming much more for y'all than for the "official" con.

If you or someone near you is wearing scent, I may have to back away rapidly. I'm sorry.

I'm not really accustomed to being a fragile little flower, you know? I'm still working out how to handle it.

Also, if there's a volunteer task I can do, something you need help with, that you can grab me for on the spot, please do. It's hard to contribute meaningfully when you can't make any promises, and I'll appreciate any chances to do so.

*rubs hands* Onward to romance!

Tuesday, 23 May 2017 16:38
branchandroot: oak against sky (Default)
[personal profile] branchandroot
Okay, now we’re cooking with slash! I mean, not that we weren’t already, because all you have to do is put Jingyan and Lin Shu in vague proximity and the air pretty much fills with hearts and flowers. But I’ve finally gotten to the point where /someone/ actually notices how bad they’ve got it for each other.

The someone is, of course, Nihuang. Because Jingyan is too self-sacrificing for his own damn good and Lin Shu may not have quite /processed/ all the back-to-life implications. If Nihuang were from the US south, she’d be saying things like “god love ‘em” and possibly even blessing their hearts. As it is, she’s smiling the “I know something you don’t know” smile and looking forward to maybe making Jingyan snarf his tea by mentioning her knowledge at a tactically decisive moment. Just possibly in terms of expanding Lin Shu’s harem, if the opportunity presents, because a fine tradition of teasing Jingyan within an inch of his life should not be let to die.

Have I mentioned that I like Nihuang quite a lot?

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2rdHZo5
via IFTTT

(no subject)

Tuesday, 23 May 2017 11:48
jadelennox: Senora Sabasa Garcia, by Goya (Default)
[personal profile] jadelennox
This speech by New Orleans Mitch Landrieu, on the removal of Confederate statues from the city, is 100% worth all the buzz about it. It's worth the 20 minutes to listen, or there's a transcript of his remarks. (Remarks start at 2:52; you can't embed a timestamp in an embed.




It is a beautiful speech on loving the South's history without revering Lost Causism or ignoring darkness past and present.

today's letter

Tuesday, 23 May 2017 07:02
truepenny: (Default)
[personal profile] truepenny
Dear Senator Johnson:

I know that historically you have been an opponent of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and a loyal member of the Republican Party, and I believe you made those choices for what seemed to you to be good reasons. I don't agree with you, but I respect that you made thoughtful, informed decisions.

I am writing to ask you to change your mind. If the repeal of the ACA succeeds, if President Trump manages to implement any of his healthcare "reforms," people are going to die. They are going to die deaths that would be preventable--that are being prevented now--because they won't be able to afford the medical care they need. This isn't exaggeration, as I hope you already know; a Harvard study in 2009 found that 45,000 people died annually because of lack of healthcare. If President Trump and his supporters succeed, those numbers will increase--and many of the people dying preventable deaths are going to be people who voted to elect you to the U. S. Senate. I am writing in the hopes that your loyalty to your constituents is greater than your loyalty to your party. I am writing in the hopes that you can see that the Republican leadership, including President Trump and his Cabinet, are not acting in the best interests of the people who elected them, the people whom they promised to govern under the auspices of the U. S. Constitution.

If we believe, as the Declaration of Independence says, that all men (and women) are created equal and have the right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, surely that means that all men and women are entitled to health care that is both adequate and affordable. The ACA provides that care, and repealing it out of party politics that are, frankly, petty, spiteful, and deeply inappropriate to our government, is both ethically and morally wrong. I don't usually make statements like that, but for me there is no nuance left in this situation. The repeal of the ACA will kill millions of people, and I might very well be one of them.

As one of the citizens whose Constitutional rights you are sworn to uphold, I am asking you to support the ACA and to vote against any effort to repeal it, undercut it, or destroy the safety it provides to all American citizens.

Thank you.



[anyone wanting to use one of my letters as a template is welcome to do so]

Newly local characters

Monday, 22 May 2017 15:13
azurelunatic: The (old) Tacoma Narrows Bridge, intact but twisted. (Tacoma)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Once I move at the beginning of June, there will be a new local set of people.


Me: y'all know me. Lunatic, infovore. Gender: no thank you. Pronoun set: plural-they.

Partner: a witty, kind geekfolk, fascinated by books and shows and links and sports and hardware and eking every last ounce of usefulness out of old gear. I have known them for about 10 years at this point. Infovore. Gender: has a lot of oppressive constructs which should be BURNED THE FUCK DOWN while not endangering the vulnerable folks who depend on some of its supportive ones. Pronoun set: anonymous-they.

Metamour: has been seeing my partner since February-ish. Met them over a game of CAH; knew they had to be friends when they had pretty much the same answer. Witty, beautiful. Likes baking. Gender: woman. Pronoun set: she/her.

Tay-Tay: my younger (biological) sister, and soon to be my roommate. I say she is my "baby" sister but she's actually a year older than my partner. Violinist and general ball of energy. Short and tiny; I can kind of lift her in one arm so she can be on eye level with my partner. Gender: probably woman-ish and she likes kicking over gender norms and dancing on top. Pronoun set: she/her.

The Kitten: a small, loud, grey indoor lap cat who loves my partner and will punch people who try to pet her without her permission. Previous owners declawed her. She is food-insecure, and cannot be left to free-feed. She's antisocial to other cats. She does not like Master Jerkface very much at all. She is most often found perched on the back of my partner's desk chair and getting hair on their jacket, on my partner's lap with her tail in their face demanding to be petted, or on top of them when they're asleep.

Master Jerkface (and other equally unflattering nicknames): the abusive ex of my beloved partner. I hope to not meet them. Gender: they have one. Pronoun set: as used here, anonymous-they.

The Man-Child: Tay's boyfriend, who I didn't hear about in the context of a Relationship until September 2016, literally as I was coming back from the Oakland radiation oncology department. Musician, outdoorsy hiker type. A few decades too old for man-childishness to be excused. Gender: man, probably. Pronoun set: he/him.


Team Partner: a bunch of people who came together to help my partner in their hour of need. They include:

an old internet friend of mine who reads the Vorkosigan books
their wife
a friend of theirs

The first hosts: one of my partner's former co-workers who went into tech and her husband

The second hosts: another co-worker-ish person and her husband


Assorted now-local friends of mine include:

Mr. Zune: a former co-worker from Virtual Hammer who is now at the SEA-TAC outpost as his career was portable
Mr. Zune's Girlfriend: got a dream job in the Seattle area

[livejournal.com profile] tygerr: an old friend and Listee
[livejournal.com profile] tygerr's wife: an excellent and fun geek lady

Carnelian: a friend of mine from the late 90s; we had various different paths in life but now we're talking again and comparing notes.
Terezi: Carnelian's daughter, who infamously needed two stacked baby gates to keep her contained as a toddler. Now a proud teenage tumblr bb. (I haven't seen her in Many Years, but I'm likely to run into her more often now.)

Various #dw, #dw_kvetch, and #lj_s folk!!!

Superheroes and Lego Robots

Monday, 22 May 2017 20:23
purplecat: (lego robots)
[personal profile] purplecat


At the University Open House during Liverpool Light Night


For context, John Higgins was giving a talk to go with an exhibition of his art in the Victoria Gallery and Museum, where the Open House was taking place.

More matters of politics.

Sunday, 21 May 2017 21:49
silveradept: Charles Schulz's Charlie Brown lays on Snoopy's doghouse, sighing. (Charlie Brown Sighs)
[personal profile] silveradept
More USian politics )
silveradept: Domo-kun, wearing glass and a blue suit with a white shirt and red tie, sitting at a table. (Domokun Anchor)
[personal profile] silveradept
Let's begin with this: information that challenges the things we hold as part of our core must overcome several mountains' worth of bias to change us.

Greetings. While the Internet can be anywhere from a completely civil place to a cesspit of horribleness, generally speaking, there is an unstated rule that children should be exempted from the horrible things adults will do to each other without a second thought. Thus, emergency custody was granted to the birth mother of two children who were heavily featured in mean "prank" videos perpetrated on them by their adoptive parents.

A young man was convicted of perpetrating a bomb hoax for planting what looked like an explosive device on a London Underground train.

Guards who cut off an inmate's water supply, leading to his death by dehydration, and then didn't actually tell anyone what they had done, could face charges for their action and subsequent inaction. Mrr. Perjury charges are being filed against recanting witnesses.

Programs that intend to help prisoners land on their feet when they exit prison.

Volunteer denistry in the front lines of Ukraine's war.

Massive arrests following the not-election of Turkey's president, a bid for power and to remove any sort of opposition that might exist.

The legacy of the Tropes versus Women series of videos, both for their content (which is excellent), and for the reams of harassment and support generated around the series, its content, and the fact that it is a woman talking about the ways women are represented in games, which some men believe is their exclusive domain.

The group of students that took on their school and forced them to have serious conversations and actually do things about sexual misconduct.

Kinkiness is more popular that people are willing to admit to publicly.

Little Free Libraries occasionally run into obstructive bureaucrats that insist the structures violate zoning ordinances and have to be permitted and licensed. Even though we generally want to promote a literate society, for some people, there are only the rules and whether or not those rules are being obeyed.

Men, especially those in political power, need to get a clue about women's issues, and then start treating it seriously. Not that this is a new problem, or a uniquely American one, as the story of Omaya Sutematsu demonstrates. But elected officials believing that women get abortions so that they can travel is an indicator of how far things have to go. Or when access to care becomes prohibitively expensive, even with an organization trying very hard to make it affordable. Or the fact that genital cutting for women still exists as a practice.

Chechnya, who deny the existence of anyone not straight, nonetheless is embarking upon a campaign to kill anyone not straight. As such purges go, the police are telling parents to kill their children and engaging in torture to get more names of supposed not straight people. Elsewhere, the comedy set that wasn't, as a final gift to those that have been coming to see Hannah Gadsby.

Mental health and healing is different for marginalized people - they do not have the luxury of contexts that the white majority believes is essential to healing.

The nature of Captain America allows for a much wider and diverse range of stories than what Marvel has been doing with him. This is the secret to his powerful following - that Steve, Sam, and Bucky are each in turn a rejection of the prevailing narrative about what a man "should" be. Fans are rejecting the idea of a Captain America that aligns himself with fascists in droves, and yet Marvel wants the fans to sit tight until the end and be patient with them. Which should sound very familiar to anyone who has tried to advocate for a social justice position or help for a minority group. Or anyone who takes a look at what the situation is really like in Gotham City.

Marvel is also asking store employees to wear and display the symbols of HYDRA in comic stores, to make a real-life promotion of the already underway alignment of Captain America with symbols of Nazism. Because there are plenty of white supremacists that are identifying with this new Captain America and are emboldened by Thor's Hammer supposedly finding him worthy, which smashes together the Norse fascination of many white Supremacists with an Aryan ideal body in Captain America. They've also been emboldened by recent political events, too.

Adam Savage supports gender as something other than a binary, and pushes back when accused of promoting pseudoscience with this support. The presence of queer characters in young adult fiction mirrors and anticipates the acceptance of queer people in society.

Ambition is both a thing that is and isn't essential, but the danger is that someone else gets to define the goals and endpoints of ambition.

Men without degrees in countries that are wealthy are feeling left behind - because they are. But rather than regress the clock by taking things away from women in their quest for equity, the focus should be on getting those men up to speed in the new world that they will have to navigate. Which will also include things that will help families stay together and meet their expenses, things that will pay workers wages that are enough to live on, instead of having any gesture toward fair pay be immediately eviscerated by large banks, debt owners, and others who believe that the investors in the company deserve all the money that gets made and further believe that they should be an uncontested monopoly in their sector (have we mentioned that the flight attendant, just like every other front-line customer service position, is being set up to fail at their work to provide that service should any tiny thing go wrong?), and give men who have been raised to expect a certain amount of patriarchy and define their manhood in ways that tend toward the toxic a place to cope or to let the pressure valve hiss for a while.

Maybe Ontario can figure it out, with their basic income experment.

Because poverty has effects, spreads, and otherwise can function as if it was a disease, which would mean the correct way to deal with it is as one might with an epidemic - prevntative care for those who are at risk, intensive treatment for those who are infected, with the idea of returning everyone to health and preventing the further spread of the disease.

A perverse incentive - the children of immigrant families in the United States spend less money raising the child by sending them away to be raised in their home countries and then repatriate them later. Which might be a subset of the perverse incentives that drive the adoption processes and refuse to give women contemplating their options complete information. When what might be better is programs to visit parents at home to mae sure they're okay and their kids are ready for schools.

The uniquely American smile, bigger in both frequency and size.

The story of trying to find more than five hundred children disappeared in Argentina during the reign of a terrible dictator and his torturous subordinates.

The idea that "radical Islamic terrorism" might be more about people who would be terrorists finding a convenient script to adopt.

A lawusit from the Cherokee Nation alleging that various pharmacetical stores did not do their part in trying to prevent an opiod crisis.

The removal of monuments to the Confederacy in New Orleans.

The idea that intimacy is crucial for good relationships and excellent sex, accompanied by the idea that the movie-version of soulmates is horse-excrement.

The idea of distributing glitter in honor of Carrie Fisher, who often used it as a way of combating her own mental health issues. If there was glitter in your life around 4 May, it might have been in honor of her.

It is entirely possible to be attracted to someone's presentation without being sexually attracted to them.

A details-accurate replica of the Anne of Green Gables areas is part of an abandoned Japanese theme park that intended to duplicate that part of Prince Edward Island.

The layouts and approximate rent costs of various Marvel superheroes.

Prepaid card manufacturers are using the offer of sweepstakes rewards to encourage their users to save money for the future. In other words, if you have a possible immediate reward for an action, people are more likely to take that, even if it's incredibly long odds, rather than going with the option that will build up more over time. It's lottery economics, now being put to use to get people to save money.

A movie that came from a First Nations child who was forcibly separated from her family and sent off to school to become white. An updating of a drug-related public service announcement to take into account the knowledge that certain types of people are more likely to be arrested and have their lives ruined for drug usage. Actors in support of making the treatment of refugees more humane.

Refugee camps in Bangladesh, unrest in Venezuela, the long history of Standing Rock as a place where white people tried to take the money and lives of First Nations tribes,

A nonstandard review of the dresses on display at the Met Gala, paired nicely with the amount of science and engineering that goes into dresses that very few people recognize as such. Avoiding poisoning someone through infusing toxic elements into their cocktails. Using the dirt on a vehicle to create works of art. Ear tattoos, a channel of dancers who dance selected parts of their Broadway resumes while providing a commentary track to the dance, the pictures of a state fair from 1941, pictures of the deadly women Soviet snipers who killed more than their share of Nazis, the best way to become a misandrist bloodsucker, the beautiful illustrations of the utterances of a two year-old child.

A thread about cat social behavior and how to best bond with your fuzzy butts. The birds of North America, dogs photograped from underneath, the use of lumpsucker fish to help salmon, cats standing on keyboards that have their picture taken by the security program, dogs photographed in very nice situations, animals cuddling with stuffed toys, what children will do with pets if given the opportunity, a podcast about the ways that animal words influence everything, the pet squirrel craze, a legendary corvid captured in photographs, the movie that answered whether all four limbs of a horse were off the ground at any given time, the use of moss as a bandage during the first Great War, dandelion seeds as perfect pipettes, female dragonflies that fake their own deaths to avoid being pursued by male dragonflies, the intelligence and memory capability of fish, cats and their props, finding cat hair in intimate places, finding a dog thought extinct while looking for intersexual pigs, getting animals iout of zoos in warzones and other horrible conditions, the super bloom of California, a corvid cafe, the abilities of sheep, artistic mollusks, feral chickens, a caterpillar that can eat plastic, chasing feral parakeets,

And then, the opposite - design decisions that shuld have been thought through more carefully and the knowledge that from the very beginning, the Fyre Festival was going to turn out badly.


Morbidity and literary time - on average, how many books you will read before perishing. Which may need some fluctuation. For example, at what point do all of these Internet pages and fanfic that I read count as a "book" toward the count of my average? Supposedly, people are too busy to read books, but I don't think that's quite right - I think that the text that would have been covered by books as leisure reading is now being taken over by social media feeds, articles, and possibly game text.

Or things like The Book Smuggler's Hugo Awards Packet.

Books and their electronic counterparts are finding their equilibrium, and it has nothing to do with what's in this article, really, about how books have returned to being objects d'art, and their various advantages to their electronic counterparts. People read on or off devices for reasons that have to do with convenience, ability, and the desires of the reader, not anything that has to do with the book, other than perhaps the author and the price point.

Posters from the past that request or demand that you read and/or buy books.

Content acquisition is happening through all available channels, legitimate and pirate, because consumers want access to what they want access to, and are increasingly unwilling to jump through the hoops and demands of cable monoplies.

Being on the autism spectrum may also mean an increased capacity to take in stimuli and pay attention to them, which can be good on tasks that require lots of input bandwidth, and problematic on tasks that don't.

Technology tells us Shoney's restaurants and the hub hospitality system for many major hotel chains were both breached and had credit card data stolen.

There is still inadequate protection for students and their data in education technology and cloud services. There are databases of facial recognition that can be used to identify you in your normal life and days, used by law enforcement without checks on the data or its usage.



It also mentions that creating sex scenes for video games is actually kind of difficult,

Letters from mathematical concepts to the mathematicians that discovered them, a company that synthesises cadavers from organic material using additive manufacturing processes, the ways in which our consumer data is being used to refine pricing for maximum profit, the knowledge that there are some twenty-five million digitized books on servers in Google that nobody has access to read or purchase, because a class-action settlement couldn't create the necesary infrastructure for it to happen, scientists attempting to defeat climate change so as to preserve coffee plants, an artifical womb that could be rather helpful for fetal development, the preferences of people and their chocolate bunnies, the fact that we don't really know what blood typing is for, even though discovering it was a crucial thing, the ancient origins of color printing, the beginning of testing of a malaria vaccine, the ways in which the nighttime is lighting up (or not) over time, being able to record a duet with yourself before and after transition, the introduction of sociology into a dungeon crawl, the reasons why life moved to the land - eyes work a lot better out of the water, the reasons why we need more and better choices than the Cult of Likes, the attitudes over time toward cannibalism, an investigation into whether or not heavy opiod use can cause memory loss, the interest of Iceland in licorice,

Last for tonight, some good news. And things that want to make you smile.

And celebrities, mostly without clothes, posing with fish. Gillian Anderson, naturally, has an eel.

Okay, and Ms. Frizzle at the March for Science.

[Fic] Black Turns to Blue

Sunday, 21 May 2017 19:11
branchandroot: pen with burning ink (ink burns)
[personal profile] branchandroot

Cross-post from my archive.

Fandom/Arc: Nirvana in Fire, Alternatives
Characters/Pairings: Eunuch Gao, Fei Liu, Gong Yu, Jingyan/Shu, Lady Jing, Lin Chen, Lin Shu | Mei Changsu, Liu An, Meng Zhi, Mu Nihuang, Mu Qing, Nihuang/Shu, Xiao Jingrui, Xiao Jingyan, Xiao Liyang, Xiao Xuan, Yan Yujin
Summary: Lin Shu survives, and, with a certain amount of salutary brow-beating, finds a purpose in doing so that moves him to enter the world again, seek out his loved ones, and start walking a meaningful path forward with them.
Meta: Drama with Adorable Romance, I-3
Wordcount: 17363

For a long time, or what might have been a long time, he was afraid he'd failed, each time he woke. He woke weak, groggy, never able to rouse to full awareness, and he knew that sensation from a decade worth of illness, fought stubbornly against it, as he always had, to push his thoughts past the fog to grip on the world again.

This time, though, he could never force himself past the cloudy uncertainness of almost-dreams. And what did that mean, if not failure, to fall ill again before his last task was done?

Black Turns to Blue )

Goodbye, Virtual Hammer.

Saturday, 20 May 2017 17:38
azurelunatic: Blue-iced cupcake with sprinkles.  (cupcake)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Friday was more boxes. Putting olives and pineapple and a few other things in a sturdy box half-filled it, but it was already heavy enough. I made up the rest of the space with dry noodle soup cups: not easily crushed, but hella light.

It was beer bash day at Virtual Hammer, and my last one. My former manager's last day had been the week before (onward and upward). I was skeptical of the food choices, as the theme was "pizza party", and I was aware of what the "catering pizza" was like.

By 2pm, when the maintenance guy hadn't shown up for the pre-departure inspection, I called the office. I didn't want to miss beer bash. He came through at 2:45. No major issues, and maybe X place would be good for the moving pod, but it was a hard problem. (In this case, "major issues" is holes in walls, destroyed appliances, etc. I am sure there will be "minor issues".)

I headed for beer bash, slightly melancholy. (My partner urged me to try for not too much sadness.) I chatted with Nora, of course. I walked briskly up the path, but paused at the duck pond to take a few last pictures.

The duck pond at Virtual Hammer, glowing in the sunlight (with a certain amount of algae bloom).

Purple called just about then, as he was about a hundred meters behind me and wanted to catch up. He had a new-ish teammate with him, someone of a delightfully compatible sense of humor.

We grabbed some pizza (fortunately, there was sufficient pepperoni pizza, as the veggie pizza was laced with bell pepper), and contemplated the desserts.

1) Streusel pizza, an uninspiring-looking cinnamon-sugar crumb on something flat and pale.
2) Brownie pizza, with toasted mini marshmallows and peanut butter cups.
3) Popcorn with some red coating on it; this would prove to be mostly spicy.
4) Cookie pizza, chocolate chip with frosting, coconut shreds, and walnuts on top.

#1 looked like a waste of carbohydrate. #3 looked like not-dessert (and upon tasting, was indeed not-dessert).
I texted my partner with the descriptions of #2 and #4, and got back some incredulous punctuation. I loathe peanut butter, and have an oral hypersensitivity reaction to walnuts. (It burns and the lining of my mouth peels off. It's great.) My partner has complementary reactions: oral hypersensitivity to peanuts, and loathes walnuts.

Purple and his teammate and I had a lovely time in one of the tucked-away back tables. There was a lovely view out the windows. We talked about squirrels (Purple's noticed that modern squirrels know how to freeze and duck for cars), bees (Purple's childhood home had a prodigious amount of comb removed from a wall), the nature of "Netflix and Chill", and other such things.

Eventually, Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly called, and we figured out dinner. I spotted the cute receptionist across the upper quad, and said goodbye. We wandered back down to the lower quad, and Purple wrapped up. I dropped some spare buttons from the 2015 department conference, because I didn't really need that many as keepsakes, and someone at work might think they were cool.

We headed off for dinner. Goodbye, campus in the hills. You were beautiful, and I met so many lovely people there. Perhaps I'll visit again someday.

Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly had been delayed in leaving for dinner, because as she was heading out, there was a machine overheating, so she'd had to spray the fans with compressed air and such. I was careful to avoid "blowing" jokes at first. The restaurant had the air conditioning cranked up high, which had likely been appropriate in the heat of the day, but was less and less appropriate as the air cooled. I put on my jacket. Purple ran out to his car to grab his button-down shirt.

The on-table tablet thing behaved itself this time, by which I mean Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly was able to look at the drinks menu and pick out something, and then we were able to aim it away from us without it blinking. I got a sip of Purple's drink, which was just about the right amount. (Two would have been an okay amount too, but it was a little sour for me.)

Ms. Antisocialest Butterfly has picked up a new online game, where she is now known as "Finger." Most of the obvious jokes were less made than they were implied. She observed that it's very important to not (as someone had) leave the punctuation out of the greeting "Finger, my friend!" What happened was that she'd joined the game and picked a nickname; some dick had immediately taken offense to her basic existence. She'd argued that this was the internet, perhaps she didn't exist at all! Perhaps she was just a disembodied finger, typing. And thus her new name.

Purple walked me to my car. We chatted about this and that, and the move. I'll be fine. I tend to pre-react, rather than post-react. (Purple post-reacts.) My partner and I have good communications. I'll be sad to leave California, but not heartbroken like I was about leaving Darkside.

We set the date and time for our last dinner: Tuesday night, in the hole-in-the-wall Mediterranean place where they treat us like family. I'll want to say goodbye there, too.

The language of apology

Saturday, 20 May 2017 16:10
azurelunatic: A baji-naji symbol.  (baji-naji)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
For reasons that don't need exploring at this juncture, I started contemplating the components that make up an effective apology to me. There are the "five apology languages", which are siblings of the "five love languages", or something. That's interesting, but it isn't quite what I'm looking for.

What am I looking for?

a) Acknowledgment of the effect, and regret. (Regret is one of the apology languages.) Something happened and I was hurt; in an intimate and trustworthy relationship, I want them to know how I was hurt, and why it was hurtful. (Late to an event, hurt feelings, stubbed toe, irritated, etc.) Since they need to care for my well-being, I feel that it's appropriate that they regret my well-being was affected.
(In an untrustworthy relationship, giving them more information on how they have hurt me just gives them ammunition to hurt me further. If you find in your life that there are people where you don't want to let them know that you are hurt or how, contemplate your options for reducing those people's access to you.)

b) Root-cause analysis. What are the factors that led to this happening? Some are the responsibility of the person. (Accepting responsibility is one of the apology languages.) Sometimes there are factors that are nobody's responsibility, or are the responsibility of entities who are in no position to have things changed as a result of the incident. (A terrible day at the DMV is not likely to be solved by anyone saying "Hey, this was terrible.")

c) Making restitution, if appropriate. (Making restitution is one of the apology languages.) A date can often be rescheduled. Doing something nice and out of the ordinary is a mood-lifter. Fixing or replacing the broken thing. Sometimes there isn't really anything that can be done to make it better, and that probably should be acknowledged.

d) Failure prevention. (In the listed apology languages, "genuinely repenting" seems to fit this the closest.) With root-cause analysis and knowledge of the effects, we can use those to plan to avoid circumstances where this comes up again, and make a plan for mitigating the effects if it does come up again.


In my present primary relationship, my partner always genuinely regrets the hurt. They don't always understand why it was hurtful, so that portion often involves a lot of discussion. (And I can contribute to things going better by being more flexible in when and how that discussion happens.) The root cause often involves things that have grown out of traumatic experiences and situations in our past, which is ... fun. Restitution hasn't been a huge factor.

Root cause analysis and failure prevention tend to slide together, even though I have them listed as separate steps. It's at the failure prevention step where, like magic, I start calming down and feeling incredibly secure and loved. Since some of the factors involve trauma, the failure prevention often involves the slow process of healing (with and without the assistance of professionals), and my understanding and forgiveness of those things.

We're learning how to fight well and safely, and I love them so much.

UBC: Rule, Small Sacrifices

Saturday, 20 May 2017 07:51
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[personal profile] truepenny
Small Sacrifices: A True Story of Passion and MurderSmall Sacrifices: A True Story of Passion and Murder by Ann Rule

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Ann Rule wrote mediocre books, good books, and excellent books. This is one of the excellent ones.
Read more... )

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Friday, 19 May 2017 14:36
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[personal profile] synecdochic
Saw the radiation oncologist this morning. (Two hour drive to NoVA, whee.) More info when I get home and have a keyboard instead of phone, but: I adore him, he's given me tons to research, he's willing to schedule me now but also says it's not house on fire urgent since it's not proceeding quickly enough to be an urgent situation (but he didn't downplay it either) and did I mention I adore him?

I feel very much better now that I know I have him, and will feel even better after seeing Mom's guy on the 30th.

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