little_tristan: (Default)
I wish Protestants would stop using the term Immaculate Conception. It's peculiarly Catholic doctrine and they don't know what it means. It sounds good but they're really just perpetuating the confusion.

I also wish Supernatural had come up with a different word for what they call purgatory. Purgatory is a real word. It has a long history and a well-defined meaning. The place they're talking about is not it. So far as I can tell, their purgatory is purely an invention for the show--given that the monsters who go there don't exist--so they could have made up a name for it rather than appropriating an unrelated word.

These things don't offend me as a Catholic. They offend me as a student of the English language.

The atmospheric pressure is changing. It's killing my sinuses and I want to go to bed. This is the only time I still miss Steve. But I don't miss being lifted at arm's length.

There was another dust-up with the arch-nemesis this morning. He got all petty about the amount of stuff I had cluttering up the counter in "his" bathroom. (A bottle of body wash, a bottle of hair oil, a razor and a box of replacement blades.) I was taking the dogs out and found my things in a box of trash he'd gathered up and left on the shower chair in the hall.

He said of course I could put the important stuff back in the bathroom, but where? Not on the counter. He just cleaned it! And the medicine cabinet is too shallow and the shelves too close together, and he just cleaned the windowsill, too, and his stuff is under the sink, but I can put it anywhere else if I just tell him where!

I assumed it was a rhetorical question. He did suggest that, since I use those things so rarely, I should just leave them on the chair. In the hall. That gets knocked over at least twice a week by me or the dogs (or Russell, in the dark).

That seemed to be the one last humiliation that it was still possible to avoid, so I took my stuff to my room and am trying to figure out a way to transport it back and forth easily enough that Mark won't get pissed off every single time I take a shower. Or worse, put it back in the bathroom (where it belongs) so I can pick it all out of the trash again in a couple weeks.

In less cranky news, stamps came today so I'm going to mail holiday cards tomorrow. It'll be a good project while I wait for Tammy. This week I'm going to ask her to do the stuff I felt too guilty to ask for last week, since I felt too guilty to ask anyone else, either.

There were two Discover magazines in the mail. I just subscribed a few weeks ago and recently got the November issue. Today I got December and January/February. I forgot they do that, use up as many of the issues you've paid for as they can with ones already printed. It's cost-saving without being a complete ripoff. At least to me. I like missing out on as few as possible.

Sort of on a whim, I subscribed to Mother Jones yesterday. I wasn't even sure what it was until I saw it on Amazon. If asked, I'd have guessed newspaper. I've seen it sourced in a lot of really interesting articles on the web and their information generally holds up. I'm hoping it's less pretentious than The New Yorker. The a-n makes me read some of the articles and explain them to him. He only knows what about half the words mean. It takes forever.

(Off, crankypants! Get back!)

Hours later, my headache is mostly gone and there is promise of food soon. Not food that I love, but certainly edible and nutritious food. If Ranger steals another pork chop right off the broiler pan, I'll try to get a picture.
little_tristan: (Riptide Murray Too Early)
Everything falls apart when I go to the bathroom in the morning. Today when I came back, not only had Willow chewed up the trash, my master monitor had died. I was going to steal the arch-nemesis' monitor long enough to switch control over to the slave, but luck smiled on me. When I unhooked the master, control switched over automatically to the slave. I didn't know that would happen.

The slave monitor sucks a little bit, but it's better than being offline. Or trying to explain to the a-n why I need his monitor, but only for a minute.

Sister and I have been trying to figure out how to get together tomorrow, with her confined to her house and my boys working. She said she'd been told they weren't having dinner because they can't afford the food. Her husband's out of work again and his mother's being a non-contributing leech for the fifth straight year. (At least my soul sucking dickhead nemesis in-law pays rent.)

We don't have time to cook the meal, but I said we could bring pizza and hang out. That's the point of Thanksgiving, right? Hanging out with your family and being thankful for what you have, even if it's Figaro's instead of Butterball? She was good with that. MiL the Hutt was not.

Ensuing conversations in Yahoo chat have escalated the crazy. Now that we're coming over for an hour in the late afternoon, MiL has to climb up on the cross and produce a full Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings. This is not a generous act on her part. This is her slaving over a hot stove all day for people she hates so she'll have something to punish my sister with until Christmas. Which is a whole other, but cruelly similar, drama.

The timing will fail, of course, because that's what she does. Always. We'll get there at five, after Russell's worked eight hours, spent an hour getting home, and driven another hour to Sister's, and the food won't be ready. She'll say it'll be another hour or two, and we'll end up leaving before dinner so Russ can get home and go to bed because he has to work on Friday, too. Hopefully McDonald's will be open.

But whether we get to eat at all is irrelevant compared to what she'll do to Sister if we leave before dinner, since she went to all that trouble for us in the first place. I wish I'd never brought it up at all, but Sister gets so unhappy when we miss holidays. There's just no way to save her.

Everyone blames the boys for working but that can't be helped either. They have to finish welding parts for the machine or the orders won't go out and the deal will fail, just like it did before. And our shop lease expressly forbids welding so it can't be done here. The machine has to be on the production line in two weeks and it's not going to be good for much without all these fiddly bits welded together in straight lines. Who knew the electronic designing and software writing were going to be the easy parts? Okay, that's not true. There were no easy parts.

I wish we could stay home and not bother the MiL from hell at all, but I haven't seen my sister since July. I don't want to wait another month.

At least my dentist appointment got canceled so I don't have to go outside. Their portable front door ramps got stolen. I actually have to find a new dentist now. One with a building I can get into. I love these people. They have an all female staff and the receptionist always remembers me. Now I get to go to whatever schmuck happens to not have stairs.

Everyone downtown has stairs. Even the physical therapists and chiropractors. All the good buildings are Historic and immune from current ADA standards. Historically, cripples stayed home. Some traditions just never die.

Oh good. The sky has gone completely black. I need a better look at that.
little_tristan: (Volcano)
Mark's phone woke us up at one this morning. Usually he leaves it charging in the kitchen overnight, but it was still in the belt holster last night so we actually heard it. Of course the caller had hung up by the time Mark crawled to the foot of the bed in the dark, located his pants, and then got the phone open. Other people (me, at least, maybe I'm alone in this) check to see who called. But Mark's one of those who literally doesn't care. All he wants is to go back to sleep.

Which he did manage to do, for about two minutes. I was waiting for something else to ring so I was awake when the banging started on the bedroom door. Mark jumped up and shouted WHAT!?!?!, in a perfect sleep-deprived fury. Anyone else would have fled, meaning it could only be the arch-nemesis who let himself in. And what was so important that he was actually intruding in our bedroom at one in the morning?*

"Did you know there's a light** on down in the basement?"

I wish I was making that up.

Mark said he knew (YES!!!!!), but somehow that didn't end it. For some reason, maybe because it was so bloody fucking late, the a-n ignored everything he should know about Mark's electrical skills and knowledge and went on to his main point, "Aren't you worried it might start a fire?" I wish I could recreate his dog-awful old-man-from-Kansas accent so you could appreciate the full skin-crawling obnoxiousness of that one word. Over which Mark completely lost his shit.


The door slammed in the dark, the dog gate at the kitchen doorway rattled and banged, and in the silence that followed, as Mark huddled back down in the blankets, completely focused on sleep, I heard Russell's phone begin to ring upstairs.

It's a terrifying thought, but Heather being so nice to him might have accidentally given the old man the idea that he understands what's going on around here and that his input is relevant. Seriously, when it comes to household/work situations, he's never told us anything we didn't already know, or suggested an idea that we hadn't already considered and rejected (primarily because we start working our problems long before he realizes they exist). So we've always had to put up with a lot of foolishment and redundant nagging, but if he's really going to start pointing out the incredibly obvious In. The. Middle. Of. The. Night--hey, you know that light that's been on 24/7 for the last 6 months? Yeah, it's on--that's a whole other ball of crazy.

I'm really starting to get how elder abuse happens. It's not right and I'm not condoning it in any way. I just kinda get how locking them in their rooms at night with no phones could start to make sense to otherwise kind and rational people. Because you know what you need to be kind and rational? SLEEP.

*Seriously, Mark is 56 years old, works 16 hours a day, gets six hours sleep a night, and has to get up at 3:30. Fucking with his sleep is a criminal offense in Gilead.

**It's a veg light and it's been on day and night since at least May. Maybe April. Low wattage, no heat, safest thing in the world.
little_tristan: (Bloom County cutter john)
It's actually been pretty fun. Steve's gf was here this morning and she left her five year old Monkey for him to watch. I don't know exactly how that conversation went, but it resulted in an extra hand dusting this morning and a trip to the park this afternoon. It never did rain, or get hot.

The park is a long walk for a five year old, so Monkey got to ride in my lap (safely buckled in, of course). Steve rode his bike and left us there for a minute while he went to the store for refreshments. I watched Monkey play on the structure until he got back and then it was time for more disc golf. Monkey is surprisingly good at it, although having an audience seems to be throwing Steve. I almost told him to relax, he already knows I'm going home with him, but that would just throw him off worse. ;)

He played one round and then we stopped so Monkey could climb and slide some more. They played a few more holes before he got bored again and there was more swinging and climbing. I have video. We walked all the way back through the park and Steve rode him around on his bike for a while, until they had one of those minor accidents that are the reason you only let kids ride on your bike on soft grass (if at all). Monkey cried and Steve was competent and comforting and five minutes later we were on our way home to make supper. Right now he's playing at the neighbors' while Steve cooks. Apparently Monkey's also staying the night.

While all this was going on, something else happened. It started yesterday when I picked up my prescriptions at Walgreens. There were supposed to be three and I didn't notice until I got home and opened the bags that the Vicodin was missing. This morning I checked on my iPhone app to see if it was ready yet, but it said that it had been picked up.

I called the pharmacy and explained it to the manager, thinking it was a mistake and this highly controlled narcotic was just sitting on the shelf, the victim of a clerical error. But no. He checked the computer and verified my part of the story. That I paid for the ones I actually got at about a quarter to noon. It also said that the Vicodin wasn't filled until about a quarter past two, more than two hours after we left, and was sold about two hours after that. That put it between four and four-thirty, when we were all home watching tv and eating supper like we do every afternoon. The manager said he'd check the videotape and get back to me.

I kept thinking about the rude clerk, whom I've never seen there before, and the dudebro in the sunglasses. It's hard to pick up a script like that. You need to know things about yourself that match the info in their computer. The only thing that made sense was that the clerk, or another staff member, pocketed it or sold it to an accomplice (this sounds paranoid but we were victims of a credit card scam a few years ago that was way more complex). That would make the perpetrator stupid, because if it had been filled on time s/he could have easily said it was in the bag and I couldn't have proven it wasn't.

What I was later told was that it got mixed in with someone else's prescriptions and given to them, although it still scanned out to me. I got my refill for free, ultimately, and I hope whoever actually got my original one is okay. Assuming that's really what happened. It also sounds like something you'd tell a customer when you're potentially seriously fucked and don't want it to go public. Like if I get my pills and someone gets fired, there's no need to make a big fuss.

I still haven't decided if I'm okay with that.
little_tristan: (Kitten Glowing Kitten is Glowing)
But only here. Which is stupid, because this is where people listen. But I want so badly not to say what's going on because that will make it true--once it's in writing it's true, or at least real, there may be a difference--and I don't want it to be. I don't want to be this stupid.

I am this stupid. And I may be getting stupider. Later there may be polls so you all can vote on how I should run my life, because I'm making a bloody hash of it myself.
And then the next day... )
little_tristan: (Kitten Prepared for War)
The house has become sort of an unarmed camp. Since I last posted, the boys have swung around to my side, but even with three of us we're losing. Or maybe we've already lost. The nemesis is convinced that Willow is attacking him when he's sitting in his office chair in the library. (Having finally destroyed the manual wheelchair he took from me, he's now appropriated the last of the boys' chairs with working features.) She jumps on him, yes, because we can't seem to break her of jumping on everyone. But when she does it to us, we either tell her off in an appropriately stern voice (followed by sit, so she has something to do), or, if we're feeling warm and fuzzy, grab an armful of puppy and get our faces licked. Really, it depends on if she's been out in the mud or not.:)
Much complaining this way... )
little_tristan: (BtVS Spike Sod Off)
I'm catching up my flist and just finished reading a couple of LJ posts by an author whose books I like. But I ended up unfriending her because, frankly, I don't need anymore things in my life pissing me off. I already have the arch-nemesis, and I live in a neighborhood without curbcuts. Why invite more irritants in via LJ?

What set me off was this: She's anti-Kindle. Not just prefers not to use one, but actually hates that they exist. Although she takes the money fast enough when I buy her books for Kindle. And isn't reaching the audience the point? Anyway, everyone's entitled to their opinion, but no one's forcing her to use one, and I can't see them replacing paper books, which seems to be her big fear. (I refuse to say "real" books because I believe the book is the content, not the package.)

But what really gets up my nose is her calling them toys and fads and ridiculing the people who use them for being trendy or lazy, or just not appreciating the beauty of "real" books or the written word. As a person who uses it to get around a very real physical disability that was threatening to stop me from reading altogether, this puts her right up there with those idiots on the street who say they're jealous of my wheelchair and tell me I'm lucky that I "don't have to" walk.

Now, I couldn't say this on the author's journal because that's her space and anyway she deletes comments that she doesn't like, but this is my space so I'll say it here. STOP JUDGING AND RIDICULING ME, YOU BLIND, STUPID, ARROGANT FUCKING BITCH. You want paper? Great. Buy paper. But don't put your petty shit off on me, or anyone else who doesn't have the privilege of indulging their preferences. Not everyone is a trendy, techy show-off. Some of us just want to read a book without inflicting serious pain and injury on ourselves.

In summary, I'm sorry if this messes with your personal view of what a book is and how it should be read. fuck you.

(PS: This is in no way meant to suggest that one needs to be crippled to enjoy electronic media. It's also neat in its own right, so read how you please and fear not any judgment from me.:)
little_tristan: (Riptide Murray's Bad Day)
I'm swiftly losing my mind living with an idiotic old man who shouts normal conversations and SHRIEKS when he wants to raise his voice. And he shrieks often. Why? Because he feels it's his duty to constantly scream at the dogs to shut up without any regard whatsoever for why they're barking. And the noise makes Willow bark more, so there's a vicious circle in hell right there. Sometimes he'll wait as long as fifteen seconds after she's stopped barking before yelling at her to shut up, which of course makes her bark again.

But usually? There's something to bark at. And he never bothers to find out what it is, just stands there with his back to the dogs, or even in another room, screaming at them to shut up. Meanwhile, UPS men knock on the door, mail gets delivered, cars pull into the driveway, neighbors pop over to ask if we've seen their cats--all things that dogs are supposed to bark about so that we know something's happening. Sometimes it's not even that. Right now he's shouting and cursing because the girls were wrestling and Willow, who is, after all, only 4 months old, got so excited she let out a little puppy yap. No doggy sound is too reasonable, or insignificant, to escape the nemesis' demented orders to STFU. And no logic is obvious enough to convince him that he's only making it worse.
little_tristan: (BtVS Spike Misery)
Yesterday was all about banking. I had to go to three banks--mine, where I set up Mom's estate account, and the two she used where I closed her accounts--but it got all complicated and I ended up making 7 stops altogether. And at one of the banks they were doing construction and had ripped up the entire sidewalk between the curb cut and the door so I couldn't get in. But (this is the best news I have) Bruder was well enough to drive, yet not quite ready to go back to work, so I had a ride. (My new wheelchair came with run down batteries so I can't go more than 10 blocks from home alone. At least not if I want to get back. They're bringing me new batteries next Friday.) Anyway, we ended up conducting business in the parking lot with the teller running back and forth with the paperwork. She was really nice about it, and gave me one of their new account promotional things as a please-don't-sue-us gift. I can't use it myself, but Cousin H will love it.:)
Quite possibly you should all stop reading now )


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