little_tristan: (Default)
Remember that post last week where I mentioned being surprised by a big gross bug in my Kleenex box? More specifically in the Kleenex I was using? I threw it in the little trash can by my desk and lost track of it. A few days later, the same bug or one like it appeared on my bookcase where I couldn't reach it and there it stayed. Now it's gone. Sounds good, right?

No. I saw the bug on the news today. In a report about the spreading *shudder* stink bug invasion *shudder* that's taking over the state. *shudder* Apparently they're coming inside *shudder* now that it's getting cold. We can probably block the crack under the front door, but it might be too late. You know, if it was female. *shudder*

According to the Dept. of Agriculture, we shouldn't crush them (duh), but they can be safely scooped up and flushed. Or we could bring some chickens in to eat them. Wow. Catch them or buy chickens. Usually Kenny Whiskers handles our bug problems but he's probably not going to be any help with these. At least not more than once.
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: (Remmington Steele Sleeping)
Bruder didn't feel at all better yesterday. He did scarf down three times the recommended dose of meclizine (my fault--I should have known he couldn't read the box) and that stopped the vomiting, but he still couldn't walk without holding onto my chair. Around eleven, I started trying to get him in with an ear/nose/throat doctor who might be able to fix it (a guy from work had his head vibrated by a specialist and said it fixed it within seconds), but no one was available. Our doctor said he needed to go to the ER, but he wouldn't go alone and getting wheelchair transport with no notice is impossible in this town. The cripple bus was scheduled too tight and the only cab company to have a lift van suddenly doesn't anymore. I guess the assumption is that sick cripples take ambulances and leave their chairs at home, and sick ambulators don't really need them along. Anyway, the meclizine finally kicked in good around noon so he drove us himself, with me watching for traffic so he didn't have to turn his head.
This is where it gets good )
little_tristan: (BtVS Spike Sod Off)
It actually makes the opossum thing look pretty good, I think. The story goes back years and years, to when I went to a state agency that helps disabled people find jobs. They gave me a caseworker, D, who got me the interview that led to my only "real" job. We stayed in touch until D moved to the other side of the state. Then I kind of forgot about him until two or three years ago, when he moved into a house up the street and a couple blocks over from me. I ran into him once and decided not to walk down that street anymore. Then, a couple days ago, I ran into him again on a street that I always use, since it has the best curb cuts. We talked for a bit and, since I'm an inherently honest (read: stupid) person, I gave him my real phone number when he asked. Because, you know, old friend.
Click here to find out how stupid I really am... )
little_tristan: (Riptide Murray in Shock)
Only not to Canby, 30 miles away. If we go, it'll be in search of an entirely new business venture, and we'll end up in either the middle of California, or Detroit. Guess which one I'm hoping for. If you guessed staying here, you win the kwepie doll.

But, in all fairness, I'm thinking it over and making a list:

Pros (or neutrals)

♥ Our house kind of sucks, so chance for a new one!
♥ New church, where there's no vindictive ex-friend to tell the entire congregation that I had an affair with her husband.
♥ Possible new job that Herr will like, where he can work reasonable hours and make a decent living doing something he loves.
♥ Most of my friends are online, so they'll go with me
♥ California would put me closer to favorite uncle and one cousin
♥ California weather would be neat
♥ Detroit weather might kill arch-nemesis
♥ Detroit is closer to my one true [livejournal.com profile] catyah, and possibly within vacationing distance of DC. (Not that we ever take vacations, but still...)
♥ At least I don't have to leave Mom.
♥ Might lead to finally cleaning out attic and basement.

Cons

♠ Probably can't sell our sucky house
♠ No vet, mechanic, pill-pushing doctor, or legal pot connection
♠ Can't travel, so I'll never see my local friends or family (dying sister, awesome cousin, oldest friend) again.
♠ Likewise parents' graves
♠ Lose custom-built library
♠ If the boys die, I'll be stuck there far away from everything I know
♠ Detroit weather might kill me
♠ Would have to drive to new location--very long trip in the van with no sightseeing stops
♠ Murphy Sloane and Roy DeSoto don't take moving well. If Ranger gets lost, she might not be able to find her way home.
♠ Bruder always gets bored partway through packing and just sends half my stuff to the dump.
♠ Can't finish settling Mom's estate from a distance--need my lawyer and accesses to Polk County Court.
♠ Lose awesome accountant.
♠ I was born here and this is where I belong.
♠ Might turn into one of those douchebags who constantly compares her home state to the new one with the new one always coming in a poor second, pissing off the locals until they all hate me. Especially in Detroit.
♠ Have to find a new company to rip me off on wheelchairs. (Assuming Herr's new job has insurance.)
little_tristan: (Catloaf mini)
I just remembered that I forgot to tell you all about the awesome thing that [livejournal.com profile] gr8kat's cat did when we were over there on Sunday. Cousin H took me, and she had her baby, Cousin C along. He's about 16 months old and quite the little toddler, so keeping track of him can be a chore. And he was fascinated by Sister's kitties, Adam and Grant. Maybe a little too much, because Grant eventually sought refuge from him in a decorative cut-out in the wall that separates her living room and kitchen. Little C followed Grant over and put his hands on the wall, staring up raptly at that switching, twitching kitty tail.

We all kind of stopped paying attention at that point. People were talking, there was cake, you know how it goes. And then we became aware of a soft little sound, sort of a hacking cough. I knew what it was immediately because I hear it nearly every day, but everyone else thought it was the baby coughing. Everyone turned around just in time to see Grant hack up a hairball and miss C's upturned face by about two inches. Of course, being a toddler, the first thing he tried to do was pick it up. After that, we kept hold of the baby, and Grant removed to the bedroom where he could barf in peace.
little_tristan: (Home)
I'm kicking around the idea of hiring a housecleaning service. We let our last housekeeper go when we lost our company and had to start paying her ourselves, but even if we could afford it, she wasn't that great. But these professional services look really sweet, and now that the arch-nemesis has lived in complete filth for almost two years, he might chip in. But here's the deal: even he's willing to pay, and Herr doesn't freak out completely at the idea of people in the house, I still have a small problem. What if they laugh at us? I don't want to be that person the cleaners ridicule on their FaceBook or wherever. ("I've seen some bad houses, but you wouldn't believe what these people had stuck to their baseboard heaters." "They've lived there for 9 years and never put up curtains, or cleaned under their stove." "I've never heard of Riptide, but my God, they have a lot of pictures...")

So here's a poll. What would you do if you couldn't clean your own house and the pet hair was winning?

[Poll #1716163]
little_tristan: (Firefly Jayne on You Side)
It was Saturday, of course, so we stayed up extra late. Well, Bruder went to bed on time, but Herr flew until midnight while I watched Buffy and read Stephen King's It. So I wasn't much in the mood when I heard something in the basement. I was sitting by my favorite window, right over a heat vent, and at first it sounded like something in the ductwork, like a ball rolling. I was telling myself it was just a funny furnace sound, but it was 10:30 already, so the furnace had been off a good half hour. After a while, I went and told Herr there was something strange going on down there. He said he'd come look into it, and I went back to the vent to listen some more.

Ranger got in on it then, sniffing the front door and then the vent, pressing her big nose to the floor so hard that she left huge wet smudges all around it. And then suddenly I heard something else breathing. A sort of shuffling and snuffling, like a clumsy man with a cold. Now, for those who don't know, a few years ago I was home alone with our border collie, Doc, when a man broke into the house. It happened all slow and scary, with me listening and knowing that it was happening but not being able to do anything. He was coming in the door between me and my hiding place, and I couldn't get outside, so Doc and I had to chase him out with just her barking and me screaming and it was one of the top three worst things that's ever happened to me. Although it's also the reason we got Ranger, so good did come of it. She's the sole reason my PTSD only lasted 2 years.

Anyway, it's been years since I've had an actual flashback on that event, but I was having one last night, so I locked the door between the kitchen and the basement, got my pistol from my hiding place, and went back down to the office to see what was keeping Herr. He had gone back to flying, but there's something about me with a loaded gun that just makes him sit up and pay attention. So when I told him there was someone in the basement, he believed me. He woke up Bruder and gave him the pistol since it isn't a style he's familiar with (Bruder gave it to me) and he wasn't sure how to work the safety, and then got his sword from the bedroom. He's really good with a sword.

The boys made a lot of noise going down the stairs, and turned on all the lights. When that didn't get a reaction, and fifteen seconds went by without any shouting or shooting, I suddenly knew what they were going to find. And I was right. It was a big ol' possum, snuffling around on top of the retaining wall and banging into the ductwork. They chased it around a little and debated the relative merits of shooting/decapitating it, but in the end they just came upstairs and Bruder went back to bed. After a quick lesson on releasing the safety on my gun. The possum is still down there, so far as we know. I'm going to call animal control in the morning, and if they won't take it , I suppose the next step is naming it.

I'm thinking--Ted.
little_tristan: (Daria: Mr. D)
All weekend, Herr and Bruder have been worrying about going to work today. They were supposed to start working split shifts, with one of them running a morning crew, then an overlap from about noon to three, and the other running an afternoon/evening crew. They badly didn't want to do this for several reasons: a) it's a long commute and with both of them driving themselves, it would double our gas consumption without increasing pay; b) Bruder really shouldn't be driving in the dark, and in Oregon in February, almost everyone goes to and from work in the dark; c) they're so co-dependent (a term they actually agree with) that they only really work effectively together. Dividing them doesn't spread the productivity, it reduces it. So they've been pretty upset about the whole thing.

Turns out, though, that they should have been worried about something else. Yesterday they were given such a huge stack of work that takes two people, that only they can do, to keep both of them there all day. The crew will work two shifts, but the boys will have to be there for both. Why? Because they aren't allowed to have charge of any employees who are actually smart enough to learn to change the heads on the manufacturing machines, and they don't have any say in the production schedules, so they can't plan the best way to, you know, produce.

The ex-partner gets the orders and they go through at least three members of the office staff, none of whom actually understand or care about what they're writing down. And they don't get into trouble when they screw it up, the boys do. The numbers get transposed, letter codes get mixed up, truncated, or left off altogether, and when one of the boys catches a mistake (which is hard to do when they don't know what it's supposed to be), they get into trouble for contacting the ex-partner for clarification. They're not supposed to go directly to her, they're supposed to go to the office staff, who, when presented with two sheets of paper that are supposed to say the same thing and yet don't, aren't even capable of understanding why that's a problem. ("Oh, I wrote down 22 DPT here when she said 22 T. So?" "So, DPT and T are two radically different kinds of trays. The customer wanted DPT and we just made nine pallets of T." "So?") These are the conversations they have at least twice a month. The waste of time, soil, and paper that costs $800 a roll is tremendous.

Yesterday the boss, who is also an owner, showed up on the factory floor and lectured them about "not catching these red flags". For some reason, they're expected to know instinctively when they've been given a wrong order, and further, what it should be. But still without checking with anyone. The bosses have been ranting and harassing about stupid shit like this ever since the boys got there, and they've finally started getting angry and yelling back. It's very interesting. They probably won't quit, and I'm pretty sure they're too important to be fired, and that alone might be why the small, petty, partial-owner boss is being such a wanker. He put up money to buy in, but he doesn't seem to serve a purpose. I'm coming to think that he doesn't like people who have actual skills.
little_tristan: (Goofball in taped glasses)
I think I'm about through the staring-into-space-in-a-blank-depression phase (yay!), but now I'm having uncontrollable muscle spasms in my right thumb and forefinger, which are basically the only working digits on that hand. So still no writing, and very little typing of any kind. Sorry, [livejournal.com profile] oddmonster. Maybe tomorrow.
little_tristan: (Doom)
Some of you may remember the incident last January when the furnace stopped working. A guy came out and basically told me to cough up several thousand dollars to replace it and then went away. It started working again because it was just dust and crap clogging the fan, but we always knew we were running on fumes with that thing. Apparently furnaces are supposed to last eight to twelve years, and this one is somewhere between twenty and thirty. No one's sure because no one's ever seen one quite like it. Goes without saying that we can't buy filters for it. We just take out the ones it came with and blow them out with an air compressor every year.
Until yesterday )
little_tristan: (catloaf hover)
Now I don't know them, really. They live in the house next to the house behind us and I've only seen them a few times. An older couple and a man in his late twenties, who is probably their son and almost for sure a junkie. They seemed basically okay, even the junkie, so far as junkies go, but when I went by their house today I noticed something. They have, in their driveway, snugged right up against the back of the right rear tire of their car, two small, clear plastic bowls. One is full of cat food and the other water. I've been struggling to think of any explanation for this other than the obvious cat trap, but nothing suggests itself. It really looks like someone is actually trying to lure a cat in for the sole purpose of backing over its head and going oops.

Any other explanation would require them to move the dishes before they move the car, and that seems like a lot of trouble for people with so much non-lethal yard and driveway space in which to feed their cat. Not that I've ever seen a cat there. This just can't be good.
little_tristan: (Sam iz Confuzzled)
The fact that DVDs from tv series can't be purchased individually. I've been watching Supernatural all the way through in preparation for tomorrow's premier, and I just got screwed. I have no idea what happened, but the fourth disc of season one is suddenly so damaged it's unplayable. It won't even read on the computer, which is pretty extreme. It skips and sticks during Nightmare, and I can't watch The Benders (one of my favorites) or Shadows at all. So what am I supposed to do here, buy the entire season again? It's $20 for six discs (on Amazon), so why I can't I pay $3.50 for one? You'd think, given how easy illegal copying is, they'd be interested in giving us more options to avoid it.
little_tristan: (catloaf)
Which I think actually started around nine last night. It was partly my fault for forgetting my sleep-more-soundly-with-fewer-dreams medicine before bed. Herr and I were talking about stuff and not arguing (well, we sort of were, but it was purely academic, not personal to us) and I just blew it off. So I was waking up every hour and not especially happy about it.
Click for my minor dramas and traumas )
little_tristan: (catloaf)
Ranger and I went out today. We went all the way uptown to the bank, which is really far and broken up with bad sidewalks and no curb cuts, just to satisfy one of the arch-nemesis' retarded demands. I tried to explain to him the other day why it was kind of pointless and lame, but he started rambling in a most senile manner about how he just knew that trying to help us (which is not what he's doing here, trust me) would turn into an argument with M (who wasn't there and knew nothing about it). So we went to the bank, and now I am very tired. But Ray was good, so points for that.

My book is boring again (that librarian thing by Johnson), and I'm too tired to write productively. There's something really wrong when my brain is too weak to porn.
More randomness... )
little_tristan: (Sheldon WTF)
Yes, I admit, I like a classic now and then. And the premise of a woman being driven mad by her husband is almost universally relatable, no? Yet my disappointment, nay disgust, with this film was such that I'm taking precious time away from Pet Society to complain about it.
Spoilers for a movie you'll never see if you haven't already... )
little_tristan: (Uhura says what?)
The lovely and sarcastic [livejournal.com profile] jekesta recently took issue with one of their UK ads, and now it's America's turn. Except it's morning and I'm not stoned, so I'll be bitching here instead of directly to the offenders. Cowardly? Maybe. We'll see where it goes.

A couple hours ago they aired a Special K ad that reminded me why I buy my shows on DVD instead of actually watching TV. It was some kind of low fat granola version of Special K (now even specialer?), and the announcer assured us "ladies" (not "customers", "consumers" or "cereal buying populace", but just us girls) that NOW we can eat without feeling guilty. Because we were supposed to feel guilty before? Because we have to feel guilty when we eat anything that isn't low fat, or at least Special K? They didn't even bother to say that it tastes good, or that it's good for us, or that we'll like it, just that we CAN eat it because it's low fat. Jesus. So's dirt. Shall I have that for supper?

Adding injury to insult is the fact that I rather like Special K. But I won't be buying it anymore, because that feels like broadcasting to the entire discount grocery store populace that I'm buying the ONE THING that I can eat without having to feel like a big ol' greedy cow who should be wracked with guilt. And Kellogg's? They can eat me.
little_tristan: (Doom)
I went into this book with such high hopes, so much did I love Bree Loewen's Pickets and Dead Men, and came out of it shaking my head, stunned that I'd made it all the way through. The premise is simple: a doctor and outdoor enthusiast joins a volunteer mountain rescue group, the Crag Rats, and saves lives in the wilderness. As a fan of both medical emergencies and outdoor tragedies, it seemed made to order. Bonus points for being set in Hood River, Oregon, a town I've visited and where I still have friends, with adventures ranging up and down the gorgeous Columbia River Gorge. So what went wrong? Click to find out why I'd rather die in the snow than be rescued by this man... )

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