Saturday, May 31, 2008

Saturday Scavenger Hunt: Letters

Alien CG took over for Evil-E and went with letters this week, instead of numbers last week. I decided that reusing some would be akin to cheating, but it is cool how many apply to both.

Last week, it was a cat in the box. This week it's a kid, an angry kid who fell asleep even.

Created on an unhappier day...

I have a bunch of pictures from this event. I was psyched to be on a boat going under a bridge with a train going across. I am an transportation geek... the approach, almost under, and pulling away. My favorite shot was from straight under, but no letters on it. Alas.

Transportation geekiness continues. This is an old double decker train car and I especially like the font, which equals letters.

And transportation-oriented sports, even, with some Winner's Circle lettering.

This did happen and this is how I let off some steam. 911 are scary numbers and the rest are scary letters.

I am a mom. I worry. These letters and punctuation never mailed to PostSecret show my concern.

These letters are on a banner made by someone I don't mention anymore. My 'job' with the t-ball team was to secure the banners. Yeah, I put out for the letters.

I didn't take this picture, but I own it. I love the handwritten letters on the front. It was mailed in 1907, back before postcards had a divided back. One side was for a picture, the other for the address. People would squeeze short letters into the margins.

Call this my hypocrite letter hat. Got it at the game on Mother's Day. It has pink lettering, what they call the Curly W. I have a goober son, who is wearing a shirt for probably my favorite place. I like the script lettering. (As a throwback to last week, you might notice how my upper width is shrinking. Those numbers are dropping. I think looking hip-y is an improvement.)

We'll call these Latin Letters.

Notes are merely letters with stems.

This was one fun booth at the fair. Monopoly has some fun and familiar letters.

Friday, May 30, 2008


I was just reading an "Isn't it irritating when..." thread and realized how irritating these people are.

One guy blasted parents whose baby cries in the restaurant. Did he think they pinched the baby so they would spoil their only dinner out in four months? I understand blasting people who bring children to late night adult movies, but dinner at Applebees (or the like) is fair game.

Same guy blasted the coupon user who dared to take his precious time as they tried to save a buck on groceries. Yes, this is the Young Republican from the other day. He thinks that nobody should try to save money because everybody has so much already in their perfect, non-diseased, appropriately reproductive hetero lives.

Youth is wasted on the young. What's he in such a hurry for? He has no wife or kids.

Another lamented a guy paying for convenience store food with change. Huh? This guy probably just got foreclosed out of his home and collected the change from the gutters.

I can't handle all the old people whiners, eithers.

It's cashism, ageism, babyism, you name it.

People are so busy with nothing. Take a little time to be nice to each other and stop with all the judging. We really are all in the same boat; nobody is better. What goes around, comes around. You, too, Young Republican, will be wearing diapers again one day.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

No can do

I suck. I was signed up with the study to go to the gym today.

Heck, I didn't so much as get dressed. I had a book to finish, for goodness sake.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Okay, I didn't know how searchable that last bit was, so I will consolidate.

I believe in civil gay unions, particularly if the same legal etc requirements cannot be done with a will or a medical directive or other legal instrument. I honestly do not believe one can see into the future enough to figure out what things marriage would cover, things which might require additional legal instruments. Would love to see more written on the topic.

Of course, I do not believe such can be legislated to be followed by any church, so they can do as they like.

I do not appreciate that, according to some arguments, the institution of marriage exists for procreation and it thusly defines marriage. I disagree, not for the homosexuals among us, but for the menopausal and infertile. This would imply that women over the age of 50 or so should not be allowed to marry. It would also imply that women with gyn diseases such as PCOS or endomentriosis should not be allowed to marry. (And what would happen if the diagnosis was made after marriage?) Further, it implies that guys who can't get it up or shoot blanks should not be able to marry.

So comment and enlighten as you wish.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Handle it?

With good warning from a valued commenter here, I entered this Curves thing knowing that I am probably ideologically opposite the corporate stance. I figured I could handle it for a couple reasons.
  1. I figured corporate image would not be too prevalent amongst the machines.
  2. I figured that it is the only gym nearby that I can join. The other gym is a muscle gym and I already paid them a two year plan and only used a month.
  3. I figured I'd get enough out of it to counter any disparity in philosophies.
  4. I figured being involved in a fitness study would be excellent motivation.

It took everything I had to go there this evening. My commitment to the study made the difference in me going. The latest you can show up and do the whole trek is 7:15 and I arrived at 7:13.

The nice part was that it took me less than 30 minutes, when usually it takes about 45. I have no idea where I got the time back, as everything is fairly regimented.

The strange part was when I was left considering #3 above. They play stupid techno music and I had no idea the variety of songs made techno. The other day, I heard show tunes made techno. Imagine Annie to a huge beat. Tonight, it was techno religious tunage. The chorus contained "revival" and other rhymes were "salvation" and "Revelation." It was almost closing time and I didn't realize the song until I was at the cool down jungle gym, but next time I will request a change.

The funny part was being quite gassy and stinky. I was glad nobody was following closely behind me on the machine circuit or I'd have left them praying for mercy.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Bright and early

Although there were showings at 9:30 and 10, I was proud we made it to see Indy at 10:30.

J had not seen previous Indy movies, but he had seen both National Treasures and Sahara, so he likes a good action movie. I appreciate this so very much. Years ago, we began with things like The Tigger Movie, then progressed to Pokeman. Now I can take him to a movie and actually enjoy it myself. Plus, I can stay awake.

This Indy movie was good, but not great. Shia felt like a characterature with no depth. Karen was the same. Indy had the same devilish humor and was only mildly geriatric. And the plot was quite obvious. Usually adventure movies have twists that are more surprising.

Afterwards, we went for a burger. It was a great day together. Gosh, I like him.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Park instead of ride

There was so much rumbling for so many days that, when the big Rolling Thunder day came, I was spent, all rolled out. My only regret is not having a mess of new pictures.

I did wind up with some good ones from yesterday when Norma, J, and I went to walk in one of my favorite parks. Going there was my main goal for the weekend; so glad to have come through on that.

J and Norma are partners in crime. They egg each other on, then put me in the middle as I scream like a girl, "DO NOT PUT ME IN THE MIDDLE." J is at his sauciest with Norma. It drives me a bit crazy, but I let it ride. They're big kiddies and can fight their own battles, especially when they start them themselves!

Norma's lost 45lbs in 18 months. She is a motivation and an inspiration.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Saturday Scavenger Hunt: Numbers

This week, the Evil one chose numbers as our word. In fact, he made a theme of it for the week. Go check it out.

Before going further, I must say that numbers have been the watchword for the week here, too. I'm not just talking lab results. I'm talking bikes. This weekend, about 500,000 are due to descend on this fair city and I believe all of them have ridden by my door. The roads are noisy. We will see them once again up close and personal tomorrow. We enjoy our Thunder as well as our Thunder pictures. One is below from last year.

When I first started seeking numbers in my pictures files, I began to get frustrated, as if Photographer Cricket has an aversion to numbers. Then they started cropping up and there was an avalanche. Of course, I could always count on my Go To File: model trains!

I narrowed it down to 20, count 'em, 20 favorites so far, but I must narrow further, or get tuckered out in the process. Or just go for it, as this is a work in progress over a couple days.

Okay, I mucked up the orientation and nothing will fit right in the first set. Tough, not fiddling with the html. (On a number of accounts, sorry, just can't get it right.)

So here you see train numbers, even a Lego one, the first time I've revealed that beaut. I especially like the engine and smoke.

You also see bad boy pool ball numbers and a dart board along with a Cricket scoring board.

You see a date and pencil type numbers with some sketches.

As Dale always said, rubbin's racin' and that will always be the case with #24.

I am patriotic in my pseudo Colonial frocks and the Spirit of 76 flag on President's Day.

That's an ex-cat in a numbered box.

We have a series on sports numbers throughout, from pool to darts to baskeball to racing to baseball to my Mom's SuperHero Sports Card. I have a jillion tennis pics, but not a one with numbers. They'd be even cuter with a number on their back, I think today.

The little fan waves his #1.

Ham boy in a meaningless number plays with #1 pooch.

I preferred bottle #4 at the wine tasting.

Food numbers, which there seem to be a lot of... These are taken from the pics I took for my first ever Saturday Scavenger Hunt.

Cool truck for Rolling Thunder last year at the corner near the Vietnam Memorial

The reason for the weekend... I cannot recommend enough the Marine Corps Museum, perhaps the best I've been to.

Friday, May 23, 2008

More sugar

The doctor called with my bloodwork results. My fasting glucose was fine (94 with range of 65-110) and my hbA1c for diabetes (measures blood sugar over a month) is absolutely normal with a midrange 5. She was a little put out the lab did triglycerides again and said it's illegal to do it per my request (but I couldn't get a word in that the script wasn't clear), then said it's neither here nor there, so I didn't pursue it. However, it is 336, which is down by 200, but not down enough, as in 120.

So it means I do not have diabetes, I do not have to discontinue my sleeping meds, and I do not have to worry about the spike in triglycerides, as mine always run high. She's increasing my Armour Thyroid. I was taking 30 + 15mg, but didn't like the jitters of 30 + 30, so I requested to take 30 + 15 + 15. I'd already found that I could take 15 at bedtime even and not compromise sleep. I am to contact her again in a month and probably get more bloodwork: thyroid, cholesterol (which is supposed to go down with proper thyroid health and may have combined with the statin to give me my best numbers in 20 years), triglycerides, and glucose. It'll be a script in the mail, so not an in office draw.

I feel strongly that this won't be the last time blood sugars will be an issue, but I am damn sure about one thing. I will NEVER feel coerced into doing non-fasting bloodwork in the future. Their desire to draw in office does not trump my desire to not have to worry about false results.

Let that be a lesson to you, Cricket!


As I mentioned yesterday, the shit hit the fan with Lyd. Last Friday evening in Yahoo IM with cam, she essentially asked if I would settle my fluttering butterfly ass down and I replied that I'm not interested in seeing anyone else. So I guess that made us exclusive, although we're not being hasty and changing our ads or anything. We'll see each other again in a month and we talk/cam/IM/email many times each day.

So this sounds good, right? How could it go wrong?

Remember Lyd is in CA, so stuff goes on after I go to sleep. That evening, she'd had at least three beers and Lyd's a light weight. Then we'd cultivated some good news, news she wanted to share.

IRL, I have told three people about us: my therapist (who really doesn't count), walking Norma, and best bud Richard. Lyd has friends around her who know, but she also turned online to our shared circle to seek support and share. So far, she'd told the birthday girl from two weeks ago (and she in turn told her boyfriend, and so on, and so on?), as well as a guest at that party who feared I was hitting on her catch that evening. Lyd has also told at least one more person online, someone she's known for many years. I see all of these people in chat. I'll admit that these are merely the people I know of.

Friday night, she told someone else. This woman is someone Lyd barely knows through chat and she told Lyd she was dating someone, but wouldn't say whom. Lyd countered with the same and, in a "you tell me and I'll tell you" moment, Lyd told her, too, which of course by default means she told her boyfriend, someone else I barely know through chat.

Lyd casually told me about this Saturday morning, just brimming with the gossip of the others' dating, and I screamed that she could shut her fucking mouth and that she had betrayed me. I have told nobody within our shared circle and she's been a blabbing machine. It is not her right to drag me out of the closet. And regardless of the sexual orientation stuff, I am an intensely private person; I don't want people knowing my business.

I also told her that she sold me out for some gossip, something rather inconsequential to know, and that she's showed me no loyalty. She put gossip above me. Further, as she'd chatted about it with me Saturday morning, she had no idea she'd even done anything wrong.

I tried to dig at the cause, whether she was drunk, exuberant, impulsive, what. She said that all applied. She knew she betrayed my trust. She was mournful.

After doing some Saturday things out and about, I was driving home. As luck would have it, Annie Lennox sang The Clash:

Did you stand by me,
No, not at all.
Did you stand by me,
No way.

and I began to cry, so I went to Norma's, the bastion of all things rules-related. I told her that I'd lost something, but I didn't know if I'd lost it. Norma especially hooked on my idea that I did not know if I could trust Lyd in the future.

So, without deciding anything, I came home and called Lyd. I told her the lost something/lost it part and it sent her reeling, as perhaps she didn't understand how serious I was. I had to define it as us for her. She said she wanted to get off the phone, but I wouldn't let her. She was incredibly moved, so upset. I was completely calm, but she absolutely understood my displeasure. I later told her that I was showing her how I fight, with calm logic, and how I expect that in return.

This week has been difficult with the lack of sleep and bloodwork stuff. My therapist yesterday exclaimed how happy I'd been for two months, how it radiated from my face, how it couldn't have been hypomania, as that makes me grumpy. These things are complications to my emotional life and, almost a week later, I still do not know if I've just lost something or if I've lost it. I will say that it is more forced on my part to communicate so much. I've been busy enough to have been able to avoid effectively without being obvious.

Mostly, I fear if she fucks up in the future, she won't tell me and I just won't know about it.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Bloody balance

I went to the hospital this morning for the blood draw. By the time I made it there, I'd been fasting a good 15 hours. This can make me a bit cranky, but I fought it hard.

This place makes you fully register as if you were checking in, even if it's just to get bloodwork. This time, checking in included an arm band even, which she said is in case you fall out during or after the blood draw, so they know they have you on file already when they wisk you off to the ER.

I'll branch off here and come back. First off, if you're having a blood draw, each person has a page of stickers with all pertinent information right there with them. (I don't see how they could possibly use all those stickers on, say, three vials.) It is obvious you're checked in. How hard would it be to grab the verification instead of wasting more fancy armband paper? Second, the phlebotomist offered to cut off my wrist tag as soon as she'd done the draws. It seems to me that many draw-related fainting spells would be as a person is getting up and walking. Cutting it off before the patient is preparing to leave, to me, negates completely the entire reason for the wrist bands.

I am too Libertarian, private, anti-rules, pissy for my own good. I abhor The Man.

Okay, to before my branch... as she was entering my data, I realize that the script was written for fasting glucose and A1c "for high triglycerides." I'd assumed that it included triglycerides, but realized that was written on there as the diagnosis for insurance reasons, not as a request. I asked her about it and she wasn't sure, so went to her supervisor. Amazingly, she came back and said they would include triglycerides. I am so happy to be getting a true fasting number, which should be much more accurate.

I could learn some results as early as tomorrow, other as late as Tuesday. I expect another letter from my doctor probably by next Friday.

I am at the part of my Curves training that I don't need an appointment for a few sessions. I'm going back in a bit after 4, as I have to pick up J from his after school science program at 5. I truly dislike the schedules for the two women's gym's I've attended: closing between 1-4 or so. This one doesn't even open until 9am and it is only open until 8pm.

But I'm just bitching. Need to get out of this funk. Good blood numbers would help, but Lyd and I had a hard weekend (which I don't know if I should try to describe), then the shit storm hit, so I am off-balance.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Moving on

This had me laughing, babies rapping about poopy diapers.

I was just telling Norma tonight that I'd have second thoughts about dating someone with really small children. It's a brave new world.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

If sleep was elusive night before last...

it was just plain crowded last night.

I'd instructed J not to sleep in my bed, but was a bad mother playing chat on the computer and didn't follow up. Then I went to bed and found a kid in it. I was pissed (consider this foreshadowing, excellent writer that I am), but didn't want to wake him up.

I remember lots of activity. When he was still a baby and would sleep with us, I used to comment that the Goths (and Visigoths and Huns) were invading. To be such a little human, he sure could crowd me out.

Add to that a first or at least first I know of: all four cats in the bed.

Man, it was crowded, but I was actually tickled about the cats.

Okay, add further to that, the Goths peed in my bed. Then pulled the covers up and didn't tell me until he was leaving for school. That was not one of my better mothering moments.

So, my cranky hangover from yesterday lasted all day.

Unfortunately, as I am wont to not open mail, I found a letter from my thyroid doctor from May 1. I'd wondered why they hadn't called, but it turns out they had entirely too much to say. When I was there three four weeks ago, she'd wanted some thyroid numbers and I requested cholesterol, too.

Everything was fucked up. The thyroid was high at 4.9, when 5.0 is considered high to some, while 2.0 and 3.0 are high to others. There I was, feeling good for two months, and it obviously had nothing to do with my wonky thyroid, which I was giving all the credit. She wants to raise my dosage, which will make me jittery again. It is a catch-22.

I guess this means I felt good, because I was hypomanic, which takes all the fun out of it and makes me sad.

The cholesterol front is just insulting. Remember, I've been eating right and losing weight? Exercising? Trying to live right? Taking cholesterol medicine? Evidently I forgot to inform my triglycerides (blood sugar), because it was 534, say 5 times what it should be. My trigs have always run high. I remember them over 400 before and they have been running 250-300 - double the high, but not astronomical.

However, specific to cholesterol, that was my best in almost 20 years at 203. My last one was something like 227 and I have had that well over 300 before. Damn these genetics from both sides.

The thing to my benefit is that I was not fasting when they took the blood. So I must go do fasting bloodwork; probably should have done it two three weeks ago when she sent the letter. However, she is quite concerned about diabetes, for which high trigs are sign, and is requesting an A1c blood test. It was actually one of my favorite things to run in the clinical lab, but I never thought of running it on myself.

The underlying cause of the high sugars, once again, could be a med side effect. If there's a side effect, then I'm going to get it. The Seroquel, which usually works for sleep, is in a class that raises blood sugars. It could be the culprit, although I only take 50mg when the normal dosage is 300mg.

With this domino effect of issues, I see it being put squarely at the feet of Seroquel. And even if it isn't Seroquel, I will have to go off Seroquel to find that out. As you well know, it took me years to arrive at Seroquel and have restful sleep. I do not want to lose it; that makes me panic. Further, if I am required to try to find something else to sleep, each med is good for 20lbs. That just ain't right.

It makes me want to cry, so I stayed in bed all day.

I hope tomorrow is less dark. I plan to go for the bloodwork on Thursday morning.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Planning ahead

Glad to say I got a good start on Father's Day today. I sent ex 15 books via Ama.zon and their vendors. Several summers ago, I read the Harry Bosch series, which is up to about 13 books. I also read the other smattering of books by Michael Connelly. All are murder mysteries with many layers of life and suspense. I wanted to give ex the set so he could go in order. In a conversation with my father yesterday in which he said he'd like to send ex something, but didn't know what, I laid this out and we're sharing the cost.

I have two of the books to send directly from here, too. Last week when ex's wife was putting together a care package, I sent along about 15 other books and over a dozen DVDs on her shipping dime. Although she probably doesn't know, I do know what trouble he gets into when left to his own devices. When he came home from Korea in 1993, he'd racked up $2000 in gambling debts at the Officer's Club and had taken out a signature loan against his truck. I was less than happy; he didn't tell me until after he'd returned. Keeping him occupied with Harry Bosch will keep all of us happy. Ex is a voracious reader in these circumstances. I want to keep him out of trouble.