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I'm having one of my very marked "I don't think I belong here" days. I know that people think I'm awesome, but I just always come back to that I'm not awesome in the right ways to really integrate and feel like I'm where I should be.

It's nice to be paid handsomely for being misplaced, but it's not particularly great for my mental health.



I would have been A-OK had the Science on Tap presenter not been married. Just dandy. As is, I was merely OK, given that he was an engaging and knowledgeable guy. I'm so sad that I haven't been going to these things for years. After all, I am interested in the field of SCIENCE.



I most definitively do not want to be the down low girl. Hooray for friend-internal terminology.



Driving in the sunshine on a beautiful autumn morning would not usually be paired with being on the verge of tears. It was all Flogging Molly's fault. Impossible to not remember the first sunny day listening to that album. Impossible to not think about how, if I had not sabotaged my life, I would likely be married to the man I love more than anything in the world.

But I did, and I'm not, and at times like this I wish for nothing more than to be able to scrub my brain free of memories. Or at least to not be so painfully aware of how likely it is that I'm choosing my current situation out of a desire to punish myself.


Think   2 Thoughts


Marc reminded me that Aggie's status was undetermined for the internets. For various reasons, she ended up spending both Tuesday and Wednesday nights out (serves her right for not coming when I called), but she was about, and I just corralled her inside. While I'm sure she was pleased with herself for having maintained freedom for a while, she's suspiciously and obviously happy to be back in the land of forced air heat and clearly defined food locations.

At about 3:30 today, I started playing around with C#/ASP.NET. I didn't leave work until around 10:30. This situation was, lest anyone worry, essentially awesome. I'm actually (almost) disappointed that I'm taking tomorrow off to have a proper 3 day weekend! Almost.



Aggie is AWOL. I hate it when that happens; my cats are normally so clockwork predictable... the times that they're not either already inside by midnight, or at most findable during a short walk around the block are rare, and nearly always have presaged something not particularly good. I remind myself, on nights like this, to not freak out until a full day has gone by. It doesn't help much.



I got a call late this afternoon, from an older gentleman. He said he'd found a small collar, with the name "Micah" and my phone number on it, outside his yard just then. We confirmed that he lived a street away, and I offered to come pick it up, as I stayed home from work today. No, no, he demurred... they were just going for a walk and would be happy to bring it by.

About ten minutes and some confusion on my part about my own house number later, I sat on the steps to the street as an older couple, and a girl perhaps 3 or 4 years younger than me, walked up. I thanked them for the return of their collar; we chatted for a bit, learning that we exist on opposite sides of the same fence, and that my cat seems to think their dog might be a grossly deformed cat, as they seem to exist in a gentle harmony from what the strangers across the fence have observed.

Uncomfortable with smalltalk, as always, I smiled them away, having never even learned their names. I'm so Seattle.

This evening, I find myself thinking about them, the older couple and their daughter and their little dog, out for a walk on a Monday afternoon. I wonder if their daughter lives with them, or if she comes by on Mondays for dinner with her family, or if she dropped by for a special treat or announcement. I think about my family, and how I haven't been able to call my mother, or stop by, in the days since Niko died. Niko niko niko, wee little pretty empty-brained biscuit cat, who was once mine, and became my mother's when I left home... she was a good fifteen years old, or so; she lived a long, full, and harebrained happy life.

My family has never been one for afternoon walks in the autumn sun... I should have offered one today.



I'm back to reserving judgment. I wish I weren't. It's all rather unfair, really, that I don't get to live my life with a screenwriter's touch and a television show's time manipulation.

Oh, for fuck's sake, can't have three days of single lines that aren't about toast.

I was told (with some inderminate amount of sincerity lumped at about the 75-80% suspected sincerity level) at work this week that I should start blogging—oh, how I continue to hate that damn word—about CSS and cross-browser compliance and how it all relates to international Web work and doing smart things that benefit our customers. I am resistant. Simply put, I just can't handle the idea that my knowledge and passion about it is so rare at the company that I can actually contribute to discourse.

I am aware of how deeply silly that is.



Pretty much like yesterday, except doubled. :D




That is all I have to say on the matter at this time.



The cats have officially freaked me the fuck out. Touched me deeply, as well, but mostly freaked me out.

When Jasper was alive, the mid-level box on the cat tree was his favorite place to sleep and hang out: he curled up there by himself, he curled up there with Aggie, he tried valiantly to curl up there with Micah (one half of each of them was always hanging out). Since he died, Aggie and Micah, for the last year, have bypassed that space entirely. They'd touch upon it lightly while jumping up or down from the top level, but not once would they curl up there and sleep; if I placed them there, they'd immediately hop out no matter how sleepy they may have been.

Late last Thursday, more properly Friday, October the 12th, Jeff and I came back from seeing Electric Six, around 1 am, to find Micah curled up in the mid-level box of the cat tree. He mrrf'd at us sleepily and contentedly, and soon dozed back off, as I exclaimed in surprise to see him there. In the last few days, I've seen both Aggie and Micah happily ensconce themselves in the box, sleeping or just taking in the view. Today, I had a thought. Surely not, I thought to myself, but still, I had to check.

Jasper was hit by a car and died immediately when I was on vacation, on Thursday, October 12th, 2006. His siblings kept an exactly year-long vigil over his spot.



Having coincidentally re-read The Dark is Rising sequence of books just this last Christmas, I'm in a particularly critical mood about the movie, which we trucked out to see after D&D tonight. It was okay, I suppose... I don't begrudge it my ticket price. But... but...

  1. The books are lovely, and one of my favorite sets of books from my childhood; the movie is not worthy.
  2. While I know they did it for time, I miss Herne. He was one of the most evocative parts of the book.
  3. I heartily disapprove of the setting having been moved to present day from somewhere around the 60s.
  4. A general WTF ditto for all the rest of the seemingly reason-less changes from the book: I understand adapting things for time, and cutting out extraneous information, but the family now being American instead of English, but living in England anyway? Changing Will's father's name? Gwen's age? Which brother was seeing Maggie? I don't get it. Susan Cooper is reportedly not happy about the overall adaption, and neither am I.
  5. And last but not least: the major plot point involving twins? Whaaaaaaa?

Also, I was a bit creeped out for Will to look startlingly like a Will that I had a gigantic crush on when I was 14 or so. That threw me off the entire movie.

Think   2 Thoughts


I am engaged in a Serious Plan to deal with my insomnia. I'm attacking the problem on many fronts, which has involved not a lot of writing in /tht/, as it had turned into an extra-late-night activity. Really, all I want to say right now is that Electric Six amused me out of my mind tonight, and I had a ridiculously good time getting down to Dance Commander and Improper Dancing (they did, of course, also play Gay Bar, and several songs off their new album). I jumped and shimmied and grooved, and now it's 1 am and I'm all tuckered out. TO BED WITH ME.



I've had a niggling suspicion since Wonderfalls, and after watching the Pushing Daisies premiere tonight, there is absolutely no doubt. Lee Pace is the most adorable boy I have ever seen. Everything about his facial expressions, his body language, his tone of voice, his timing... adorable. Also hot. HOT HOT HOT HOT. And he's only a few months older than me (fanning self). I don't think I've ever seen anything more adorable than Pushing Daisies on network TV, ever, which just makes me morbidly afraid that morons will cancel it, just as Wonderfalls was cancelled, and I'll have to wait another 3 years before I get to lose every braincell I have and simply coo at a boy on a screen. It's embarrassing, but so accurate.

Between Lee and the look on Nicholas D'Agosto's face when he said "Claire, shut up," I was completely incapacitated by attractive dark haired boys around my age tonight.

(Pondering) I've often claimed I don't have a particular type of guy that I prefer, but my prediliction for the Christian Bales, Lee Paces, and Nicholas D'Agostos of the world may put the lie to that. Their type certainly seems to be slightly overrepresented in my sample set.

Jeff and I cooked up a fantastic beef stew, in the process discovering that the Chimay Bleue Ale is the most delicious beer we've tried in forever; the first beer that either of us have been genuinely shocked and delighted by since the first time we each drank Mac 'n Jacks. Christ it was good.



I got all sorts of guff last night when it came up that I'm going to my grandparents' for Thanksgiving instead of going to my 10 year high school reunion. I tried my best to refrain from making it clear exactly how I would vastly prefer to see my grandparents, who have loved me and cherished me my entire life, to seeing a gigantic group of people who, with startlingly few exceptions, made me feel completely unwelcome and / or unnoticed for four straight years. I will admit that my scheduling was accidental (although who the fuck thought that having the reunion the Friday after Thanksgiving was a good idea? Oh wait... those particular members of the class council were never the sharpest points), and that I'm having a minor twinge of regret that I won't be able to... desperately try to find someone I used to kind of get along with, suffer massive bouts of tongue-tied-ness, and find that the people who were jerks are still jerks, the people who ignored me don't remember that I even existed, and the people who I somewhat knew didn't show up? Never mind. I wasn't going to have anyone to go with me to keep me steady, so screw that noise. If there's a 15 or 20 year, maybe I'll hit that one up.


I felt more positive about going before I re-met some folks through my brother this last year, to be honest. Seeing those people has generally been a small scale set of depressing humiliation and awkwardness that I'd just rather not scale out.

Other than the reunion talk that comes up every single gathering at the Fool's place lately, party on Saturday night was fun. Jeffie came along for the ride, I got to see Bennett and the rest of the EPLT boys, games were fun, food was tasty. It's going to be interesting if this living with brother thing works out... he's much more social than I am, so people will be... in my house. That's going to take adjusting.

Today was mostly spent moping, as I've not adjusted yet to the full turning of the season, and so all the little things are piling up into giant snowdrifts of depression. I'm hoping I'll come out of it in a week or two, and I'll be safely ensconced at the ranch for Thanksgiving, when I have had the most trouble the last few years. Sigh. I don't know what it was about today: the weather? Something ineffable in the air? I've avoided thinking distressingly about my heart's situation relatively successfully for the last few months, but I couldn't help it today. I've been cloaked in memories all day.

I suppose it was a blessing of sorts, then, to be quite distracted when I opened up dishwasher, full of the last batch of CD cases being cleaned, and realized that I must have either put the washer on full instead of short cycle, or not cracked it to let the steam out after it ran its course. About half of the cases and trays in the load melted and warped, like an art project run madly amok. I'm keeping a couple of the more amusingly distorted ones; I guess I'll just have to go buy some empty cases to make up the difference. Note to self: dishwasher gets really fucking hot. Don't be an idiot next time.

Also, I have determined that I exist in Hawai'i's time zone, or possibly Samoa's, depending on whether half past midnight or 11:30 pm is a more reasonable time to be going to bed.



What a very strange night. But female bonding was had, and lord knows I've not had a girlfriend to call my own, outside of work, in years. Amusing that it should involve the Mercury again. Curses, curses, that everything about it was wrong in the ways that mattered when the adorable guy who pierced my ear last year was around. Ah well.

I also haven't reeked of smoke this bad in... forever.



I quote, I quote, I quote.

Just like you, I fucking beat myself up night and day until I'm black and blue because I'm not the guy who wrote "The Corrections" even though I couldn't even read "The Corrections," and I couldn't even read "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" even though I'd like to be Dave Eggers, and why the fuck would I want to be Dave Eggers? Because I'm a sick fucker, that's why, because I hate myself. And I have to stop doing that. I have to love myself.

I have to love myself because loving myself is the only thing that stands between me and suicide.

I love myself because I have to. I love myself because suicide is not an option. I love myself because other people love me and I've got no right. So I love myself immoderately and without delay. I love myself without recompense, without reason, without state sponsorship or licensing, without writing a proposal first or getting a grant, without getting dressed up first and taking a shower, without calling ahead to find out what time I should love myself, without buying a bottle of wine and some flowers first, without shining my shoes and clipping my nails. I love myself because of you. I love myself because there are people like you and me all over the world beating ourselves up because our sisters made more money, because our sisters are more perfect, because everybody loves our sister better. Jesus, woman! Love yourself! Take the afternoon off. Pick up something you've made that you love and admire it. Spend all day admiring it. Don't criticize it. Don't pick it apart. You made it. You are a creative person. You don't control the market. You don't even control your creativity. It's a gift. Take care of it.

Love yourself because you've got no choice. It's that or end up in an institution where they hand you your meds in a little cup from a window.

Reminder to self and all that.



Multiple nights in a row of being at work past 11 are just not so awesome. It's not even that I have that much actual work to do, but things have conspired against me. And by things, I mean myself.

What is awesome, though, is cooking a real meal for myself for the first time in what seems like weeks. Homemade tomato sauce using tomatoes from the garden, onions, shallots, garlic, and a serrano pepper, over fettuccini with a bit of hot chili oil. In that respect, at least, I feel like a normal person again.

I wish the iTunes rating scheme was a 1-10 scale, with an undocumented feature that you could somehow rate stuff as an 11. Ravel's Bolero is totally a 6 on a scale of 1-5, a 11 on a scale of 1-10, quite possibly my single favorite piece of music ever.



Last night, at about this time of night, Wikipedia taught me that there's a fancy term for the very specific type of insomnia I've suffered since I was in middle school: Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome. Ah, the urge to label!

Often, people with the disorder report that they cannot sleep until early morning, but they fall asleep at about the same time every "night", no matter what time they go to bed. Unless they have another sleep disorder such as sleep apnea in addition to DSPS, patients can sleep well, and have a normal need for sleep. Therefore, they find it very difficult to wake up in time for a typical school or work day if they have only slept for a few hours. However, they sleep soundly, wake up spontaneously, and do not feel sleepy again until their next "night" if they are allowed to follow their own late schedule, e.g. sleeping from 4 a.m. to noon.

Attempting to force oneself through 9-5 life with DSPS has been compared to constantly living with 6 hours of jet lag. Often, sufferers manage only a few hours sleep a night during the working week, then compensate by sleeping until the afternoon on weekends. Sleeping in on weekends, and/or taking long naps during the day, gives people with the disorder relief from daytime sleepiness but also perpetuates the late sleep phase.

People with DSPS tend to be extreme night owls. They feel most alert and say they function best and are most creative in the evening and at night. DSPS patients cannot simply force themselves to sleep early. They may toss and turn for hours in bed, and sometimes not sleep at all, before reporting to work or school.

While I do find it amusing to have myself described so accurately (my particular schedule seems to want to run from about 3 am to noon; given that I can't usually do that, I tend to sleep upwards of 12 hours on the weekends to make up the gap), was it really necessary to generate a term specifically for this branch of the insomnia tree? It seems... extraneous.