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      CommentAuthortaphead
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
     (11211.21)
    Move along, folks.
    •  
      CommentAuthorAlastair
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
     (11211.22)
    i'm sorry for this folks... i'll be going for a while
  1.  (11211.23)
    The bad - money, always money.
    And my computer went and died me. It's mostly fixed now, but I've also had to buy RAM that I didn't have money for. Hoping when that arrives, my system works better then before...getting really awkward to use a couple of programs I need to use. Which leads me to ....

    The good - The first episode of my web series is done! Current plan is to launch Dec 23, and the be weekly for 13 weeks, so I still have lots of work to do on ep 2-13, but 1 is done! It's short (like 1 min) and it's stupid (just a conversation between 2 idiots) but I've learned so much and had such a good time on 90% that I can live with the 10% that sucked.
    Also, as a result of this, my buddy and I have brought in a 3rd partner and the plan is to be a profit generating business in the next 5 years. This project is just the start (and a way of proving we can both all work togather and deliver a solid product)

    @ Fauxhammer - my condolences...there are no words, so....hugs
    @Chiaslut - Glad you're okay, I got hit by a car last year myself, but not nearly as bad. Still, I get how it can shake you up.
    @Raz - Pee on the matress is the worst. Dealing with that myself, but with a cat. All I can suggest is to get a brand new litter box?! (seems to be working for me)
    •  
      CommentAuthortrini_naenae
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
     (11211.24)
    I'm doing it all in the wrong order, but I've got all the parts so it should be ok. Right?

    Others:
    @dnewling: Wow, I hope both you and your mom get better soon!

    @fauxhammer: Sorry about your dad.

    @Beamish: Yeesh. I hate when I'm in a funk. It'll pass. At least that's what I tell myself.

    @Rootfireember: Glad work things and creativity are going good. Wish the exhaustion and family crazies would stop being a problem for you. At least you're getting closer to getting out?

    @razrangel: I'm glad you have at least a little funds, even if it means unfun decisions. I hope the sleeping situation clears up sooner than later.

    @icelandbob; I'm glad at least the school stuff is going in your direction, and I hope you're able to work things out with your friend. And, um, would you and Sigga ever consider adopting?

    Bad: Winter has arrived here in northern Wisconsin, and it really really sucks. Also, my tires are worthless, and I have to wait until the new tires arrive, so until then I have to find inventive places to park because otherwise I risk a ticket or get stuck twice a day due to the state of the alley and my parking space. Also, I'm currently basically spending more than I have to get through the month. Well, and pay for the tires. And then there's the Guy.

    Mr. confusing mixed signals who I was infatuated with, oh and happens to be a co-worker who I tend to see about every way. Who reminds me of the shitty boarding school in the difficult country that I don't like to talk about. Which means I more or less get triggered every time I see him. I know that I did/said stupid stuff, and that trying to talk to him further is probably just going to make things worse (hell, I basically told him I wasn't going to bother him ever again), but sometimes it feels like he's watching me if we're in the same area. The whole thing is pretty miserable, and it's not like I can really talk to people about it (aside from my therapist), because everyone knows everyone in this town, and ... yeah. Part of me very badly wants to explain to him why everything happened etc, but I know that'll just make things worse. I hate how fucked up I am, and I really hate my baggage, and I really really hate that stuff that happened about 13 years ago can still fuck me up.

    Good:
    Aside from The Guy, work is good, and I'm friends (or so I think?) with most of my co-workers, and I still get to flirt from time to time. The christmas shopping is done, and eventually there will be tires on my car, and my sister should be helping me put art on walls (she's good at interior decorating) on Thursday. I get to sleep in most days a week. I'm guaranteed to not have to work christmas day, which I know will make my mother very happy, which is kind of nice. And I've taken over the role of "Santa" in regards to stocking stuffers, even if all of the stockings belong to adults (and I'm the youngest). It's kind of fun. And as much as I hate The Guy related drama, it's very useful to pick apart the ways I'm messed up and the various things that make me react in certain ways, which means I can hopefully learn some things from that mess. And I might do some writing that might turn into a blog as a result. And I'm sporadically picking up my uke. And living in small town Wisconsin does mean that just about every time my car gets stuck, someone takes pity and helps me out.

    Very Blurry Photo:
    blurryfreyja
    edit: because photo was too big.
    •  
      CommentAuthorallana
    • CommentTimeDec 10th 2013
     (11211.25)
    Trini, you look like an elf! On guy-stuff, you'll feel better for the rest of your life (roughly) if you stick to your guns and 'never bother him again.' (not that I'm qualified to say if he was bothered) Workplace crushes suck and are awful. Even/especially in small towns with limited dating pools. It's better to leave it be. One thing that isn't too contrived is to find some other sympathetic ear who will understand your intentions.

    Peter: link to web show plz!

    Alastair: I'm sorry I won't be in Toronto when you're around. I do love Whitechapel-drinking.



    I too am working backwards:

    Today sucked. It was just reasonably crappy by most standards (woke early for a FedEx pickup that never came, trudged through snow to dropoff point only to spend two hours on the phone with tech support of two separate companies trying to mediate their communication breakdowns, thus late for work and hungry all day and got some useless 'warning' that has me raving about The System Nietzsche-style) but also it was my birthday. And I'm alone in a city that I hate and it sucked. I hate that my just-a-normal-day attitude broke down to this extent, that that it's-my-birthday-dammit indignance made it that much worse.

    The Good is whatever. Vacation something reading books yay crafts woo. Too cranky.
    •  
      CommentAuthorGreasemonkey
    • CommentTimeDec 10th 2013 edited
     (11211.26)


    Brother in law had to go to hospital last week after waking in the middle of the night with terrible abdominal pains. After some scans and surgery for an abscess, it turns out he's suffering from the kind of Strep A infection that progresses to flesh-eating disease if not caught early. If the medication doesn't kill the bugs, he's going to need more surgery to remove another infected bowel section. Prognosis is only fair to middling, and my sister in law is beside herself with anxiety.





    Almost completed a 4'x4' portrait of Whitechapel's own beloved Oldhat. It's . . . . the best thing I've ever made.





    @Peter - Congrats on the web series. Awaiting the first episode with enthusiasm.

    @Allana - happy birthday. I'll buy you a large glass of whatever you like, next time you're in town, to make up for it being a non-event on the day.

    @Chris - sorry again about your dad, man. That's some tough shit to deal with.
    •  
      CommentAuthormister hex
    • CommentTimeDec 10th 2013
     (11211.27)
    Well, hell, if everybody else is working backwards, who am I to blow against the wind?

    @grease - First, lemme say that oldhat piece is genuinely one of the best art-pieces I've ever seen and it wasn't even finished when I saw it. Sorry to hear bout yer kin, man. Hope it's okay. We gotta get it together soon. With, say ...
    @PETER KELLY! - CONGRATULATIONS, man! The hardest part is making a start! One in the can is the next one gettin' ready! Roddenberry and Lucas both agree - sf franchise's where the money's at! Busy or not, you come out, you drink with me and greasemonkey and oldhat and Madame .44 (Mah Ladyfriend) and whoever else! Yay for drinking.
    @Allana - Happy birthday, m'dear.

    @fauxhammer - I'm so sorry.

    @trini - sucks to be winter and sorry to hear about the boy troubles. Nice dress, though!

    SO .... Life is not totally shitty. The ongoing car-crash of a mayor in my town is nothing but a comedy goldmine (THAT'S RIGHT! A MINE FULLA GOLD!) and I've been exploiting it, best I can. Gettin' some notice for my commentary, nothing concrete but might be an opportunity.

    Writing going very well otherwise. Very "I can see the end". First time ever. If it works, it'll work well.

    Madame .44 and I are getting along quite well, even though I'm a fuck-up.

    WHATEVER.... she's awful stressed and is probably doubting the whole she-bang, BECAUSE I'M A FUCK-UP. (Nothing terrible, I'm just chronically late and kinda beatnik-ish and she ain't. She ain't pretentious or label-conscious or anything but I can tell she doubts the viability of any long-term relationship with me unless either I change radically or she does. Likely, we'll meet in the middle. I HOPE.) Hell, she's actually way more radical than me.

    My dad has gout. He forgets to take his pills and then screams in pain. He drinks too much. He's massively overweight and can't breathe. Or walk.


    @to everyone out there, I'd like to close by wishing I could dance with you or talk or just hold your hand. Y'all mean a lot to me.

    •  
      CommentAuthorGreasemonkey
    • CommentTimeDec 11th 2013 edited
     (11211.28)
    @Hex: Cheers mate. We'll have to go drinking again soon, most likely early in the new year.

    Performed an experiment yesterday, entreating any gods that would listen to help out my brother in law, and today I received an email from my sister in law describing her husband's amazing sudden recovery and discharge from the hospital. I now have a data point.

    Robin's portrait has progressed since you saw it. Lots more layers of smaller dots; the trick is to imagine the brushstrokes as cells in a bacterial matrix and let them flow where they may. Pushing the style and obsessiveness boundaries considerably. I think it'll sell. You should come sit for a portrait some time.

    Growing increasingly impatient to read your book. Envisaging a lustful, drunken debauch; the journal of a modern Dionysius.
    • CommentAuthordnewling
    • CommentTimeDec 12th 2013
     (11211.29)
    @Trini_Nae et al: I had to get my ear suctioned, but it is all right now. Mum is over the worst of the shingles, but still has to take it quietly and not do too much. Thank you for thinking of us.
    •  
      CommentAuthorrazrangel
    • CommentTimeDec 17th 2013 edited
     (11211.30)
    Negs: Sitting here in my chonis* aware that I've wasted another day. This has been my bag for years now and it's killing me. It's absofuckinglutely killing me. I wanted to get up hours ago. I set my alarm, I told other people I'd be up and out. And then I didn't. It's not a recharging thing any more, it's not a depression thing exactly. It's just laying around in bed, daydreaming about things I don't have and ignoring the fact that time is flowing by. I could have hit the gym, I could have packed up and headed to my friend's house to try to get some VO work done, gah I could have cleaned this damned room. Nope. Now I only have time to eat something and then hit the road for my evening class.

    There are things that I want terribly. But I can't convert that wanting into a fire that gets me moving toward them. WTF? Why are motivation and drive everything that people around me live by but I can't key into them? I see you awesome people getting to it, building and working and connecting and making the shit come up out of nothing. Me? no. nothing. Just another day frittered away. I don't want to be fat, I don't want to be alone, I don't want to live on my parent's dime. So why can't I get up and do something about it? I do bits and stuffs in short spurts, a jaunt here, a flail there. But nothing sustained. And then these days come again. GOD. FUCK.

    Pos: Great friends, family is mostly leaving me alone at the moment... Last class in a series tonight focused on acting without thinking. It's good, or even great. Affirming at the same time that it challenges me, and I'm surrounded by talented people. Read a damned fine play on Sunday, there will be another in two weeks. At least art keeps my soul afloat while everything else sinks.


    Hugs: I've felt like a shit about trying to write my whiny crap when people have molto serious problems with loved ones being terribly sick or even dying, with closing chapters on their lives and having to move on to a part that is not really exciting or desired. Everyone - Faux, Chia, Alastair, Trini, dnewling, Bob, Hex, Grease, Allana, Root, Robin, you're all fucking sexy and I love you more than I figured I could love Real People I've Never Met.

    *chonis = underwear
  2.  (11211.31)
    (misread it as 'clitoris' at first glance)
  3.  (11211.32)
    @razrangel - that is a straight up symptom of depression. I finally received a solid diagnosis of bipolar II a couple of months ago and changed medication. What I find totally bizarre - as I've been like this for 30 years - is that I just don't get what you described anymore. I wake up, I feel OK. Not driven, hyper, scattered; not blackly self-loathing and exhausted; not apathetic and paralysed. Just.... OK. I make breakfast, I get dressed, and I start doing things. Then later I get tired and stop doing things, make dinner and marvel at how much I actually did today.

    Seriously. I had what you have. It's a symptom. New meds, *poof* it's gone.

    OK I have no idea how to split the above to comply with the format. Trying again.

    ARGH: It's been an awful year. I was getting sicker and sicker. The manic episodes were getting scarier and the depressive episodes getting blacker, and the whole mess was cycling faster and faster. I thought that if I lived until Christmas, I would be spending it alone because I would have lost my family. Turned out the primary cause was the SSRI that I had been prescribed several years ago for depression. I was going into serotonin toxicity on a regular basis.

    YAY: Due to the titanic efforts of a good friend and fellow sufferer who spent months lobbying on my behalf, I was granted an appointment with the main expert on bipolar disorder in Australia. He changed my meds, dropping the SSRI down to an almost homeopathic dose and putting in a stabilser as well. It's like fucking magic. I'm just better. People keep saying I must be "back to my old self again" but there was no old self. I have been in Hell to a greater or lesser depth since at least 1983. This is new, and it's amazing. I fucking love it.

    HIGH FIVES: While I've posted very little here this year, I read it every day. Thankyou all for your honesty, your creativity, your curiosity and humour. It's been a lifeline, sometimes literally. razrangel, if you want to talk about symptoms and stuff in more detail than you feel comfortable doing where it can be read in public, please feel free to contact me off-list. I can even show you mood graphs that will demonstrate what happened to me when I changed meds. My details are up there in my profile. Hope your days improve regardless.
  4.  (11211.33)
    Good:

    There's this podcast called Star Wars Minute, where these two guys go through Star Wars one minute at a time, each minute it's own episode with a guest. They are currently between Star Wars and Empire, so they decided to have a live discussion of Star Wars Holiday Special. I was one of the four guests! I got to sit on a stage and talk about the second half of this ridiculous show!

    John Hodgman retweeted my photographs on tumblr!

    I went to the second annual Philip K Dick Film Festival, and it was awesome.

    I just spent 2.5 weeks dog and apartment and car sitting, which was awesome. A small but swanky condo with heated floors and a jacuzzi bathtub; a car with an EZ PASS; an adorable pug to keep me company; and smokables. It was quite lovely. It was a nice break from my normal life. I'm going to try and find similar gigs!

    Fletcher looking Gallifreyan. Getting ready for Star Wars Minute LIVE! at Parkside Lounge in Manhattan. It starts at 7. I am fortunate enough to be a guest commentator! Look at that FACE. #pug


    I found perfect Christmas presents for my fellow, now affordable from getting paid $250 for dogsitting.

    I got pictures from Joanne Leah from my sitting for her over the summer!



    Oh, and my photo book DAD SOLD CRACK HERE is now available as an ebook download for apple devices for only $5.99!! WHOO HOO! So exciting!

    Bad:

    My MRIs and MRAs didn't really come up with anything new, aside from a pituitary cyst, that I suppose I'll have to remove. (and those MRA tests cost around $550 apiece, not covered my insurance) That's brain surgery and all, but not really a huge deal. I doubt it's the answer for all my health issues. My neck is a mess, I've got "multilevel" disc problems, spinal stenosis, and a bone spur. However, the new pain doctor I went to had guessed it was a bone spur and already has a plan in mind for me. That is promising. I'm just confused because it REALLY does look like there are vessels that are missing on one side in the imaging.

    Screen Shot 2013-12-07 at 12.17.52 PM

    I am going to end up in a debtors' prison at this rate. I just got an MRA of my head, as well as one of my neck. Another thousand dollars in medical bills I can't afford to pay. Add em to the pile!


    I hurt. A lot. All of the time.

    The track pad of my macbook is dying. Again. As is the rest of it. Slowly. It turns itself off sometimes now. I'm so terrified that my computer is going to die.

    Last week my oldest friend's mother died. He flew in from San Francisco. Luckily, I had the car to use, and was able to drive out to NJ for the service. The thing is, I only slept literally two hours the night before, and it was, y'know, a funeral, but I had a really wonderful time. Everyone was being particulary human (and I mean that in the good way, for a change).

    My Mom keeps trying to contact me. I asked her to tell me what she took responsibility for, and .... well, her letter was a narcissist's attempt at taking blame without taking blame. Disappointing. I had been hoping that maybe she really had been through some kind of profound self awareness epiphany or something.


    Inbetween?

    CHRISTMAS!

    Good? Bad? I never freaking know. I love Christmas, but my Christmases tend to be horrible. Christmas Eve is also my birthday. It's.... Anyway, I was asked to make a Christmas Birthday wishlist by a friend, and I explained a few of my horrible Christmases over there. CLICKY CLICKY!

    Also, I've decided to try and see if I can find a place to live that will trade housing for a personal chauffeur. There's alot of NJ without decent public transportation, and if you get your license suspended for drinking, you can't work or go to the grocery store. So.... well, it's a long shot, but, I can't keep living on this little. Also, having enjoyed the use of a car earlier this month, I've realised how much of my limited oomph is sapped away by having to hoof it everywhere I go. I have so much more pep with a car at my disposal. I hate car culture, though! DAMMIT.

    OTHERS!!!

    Fauxhammer: Damn, yo. I've no idea what to say.

    Bob: I understand that can be heartbreaking. I wish you luck and fertility!

    Peter Kelly - Exciting things are happening for you! I'm so pleased!

    Greasemonkey - HOORAY for artistic breakthroughs!

    Kay - that's really inspiring, and I think I'm going to once again pursue a diagnosis.
    •  
      CommentAuthorAlastair
    • CommentTimeDec 19th 2013
     (11211.34)
    i don't know if i should be here.... i love you guys
  5.  (11211.35)
    Rachæl, it's so worth doing. It's taken me years to get an accurate diagnosis and appropriate medication. Much of the inappropriate medication has made me worse. A few months ago I was utterly without hope. I thought I would be dead or at least separated from my wife by Christmas. Now, I've been almost perfectly stable for weeks, with only the faintest wobble in the presence of multiple trigger factors. Don't give up. Keep searching. Good luck, and know that come what may, all of us here have got your back.
  6.  (11211.36)
    Alastair:

    A few years ago, you might remember, I was ill with Lyme Disease. I was broke, without my Disability coming though yet, living in a tiny bedroom in my Aunt's house, which used to be my now dead Grandmother's house. It was the same bedroom I had when I was 5, in it was door to the attic. I was told to keep my bathroom items in a caddy and bring them in and out with me daily, I was told that I had to keep my things in the garage, which was falling apart and had birds crapping on everything. My Aunt rarely watched anything aside from food shows, the Catholic Channel, and golf, peppered with PBS or TCM from time to time. She ignored things that made her uncomfortable. She'd change the channel if she thought the movie she was watching might end up too sad. She didn't like my questions and conversation. Meanwhile, the Lyme Disease was making all my pains worse and causing brain swelling which gave me constant headache and was literally making me go a bit crazy. I was trapped in a situation where I was bedridden, my Aunt ignored my health and complained that I was always negative. Eventually she stopped looking at me or responding to me when I spoke. Meanwhile, the fellow I was head over heels with, the only person I had in the world, rejected my romantic declarations and confessed to having been with another woman. Consistantly. For probably over a year. I was completely decimated. I was alone and emotional and had nobody to turn to. I had three friends I could call to chat with every so often, and I tried to rotate between them and not burn any one of them out. I was totally a wreck. A black hole of pain and need and constantly torn between clinging and over-venting versus hiding away out of shame of burdening anyone.

    But... the internet.

    I could rant and vent and express myself there. I could let it out, and nobody who didn't want to would have to pay attention. I wouldn't feel burdensome. I wouldn't feel like an imposition. I wouldn't be so alone with my thoughts. I could spread myself throughout a large group of humans so I wouldn't feel such a heavy responsibility. There was a certain stark honesty that existed with the internet people I knew, kind of like how you can talk to a work friend about your emotional life in all sorts or revealing ways because they are so detached from the rest of your existence; only computer friends were exponentially so.

    And then that fellow that broke me sought out my online life and got angry that Id' been "publicly badmouthing" him. To me, it was just bleeding in the corner where people could see if they wanted to look. I had to be careful and quiet. Everything was really terrible. I felt quite alone in the world. And really paranoid.

    My point here is, don't let this get yourself too shut off from the world. Regardless of who did what to who, the specifics don't matter. Find other avenues to express yourself and connect with people. I say this from experience. Email individuals, chat where the words go away, have phone conversations, meet NEW people even!

    Also, while internet people are AWESOME to have at times like this, the things you say when in a bad head place aren't the things you want taking up place in your recorded life. I don't mean this in a spirit of being afraid of offending other people, I mean it in .... a kind of chaos magic sort of way.

    This isn't going to define you forever. Hang in there.
  7.  (11211.37)
    Alastair, I missed the whole episode. The posts were deleted before I logged on the following day. I may not know what I'm talking about, but to me the fact that you weren't banned says a lot. Mods lean toward hardassery in Whitechapel. If you're still here, you're still one of us.
  8.  (11211.38)
    I'm liking the backwards thing. So I'm gonna repeat it. But no pictures because I don't have anything new.

    @allana: Thanks! That's from Halloween night - me as Freyja. I suppose she would look like an elf, so I'll call that a win. And thanks for the advice. And I'm fairly certain that I'm not going to think about The Guy as much other than an annoyance. Crush is officially over. Sorry to hear your birthday was a massive pile of suck. Hopefully things have gotten better at least.

    @Greasemonkey: I hope your brother-in-law stays well, and I'm looking forward to seeing how the Oldhat painting turns out.

    @mister hex: Thanks. :) Your lady probably still things you're really fabulous. And fun to look at. Etc. I'm curious to see how your writing project turns out.

    @razrangels: Seriously, listen to Kay Ochison. I take meds in the morning that boost my energy levels, which is making it possible to finally start taking less of the citalopram come spring (SSRI I take so I'm not a mopey crying person all the time). And the therapy I go to so I can make better decisions etc. All of that means that I am slowly (ever so slowly) starting to have a much better life. But I didn't do it on my own. Or could have done it on my own.

    @Kay Orchison: Glad things are so much better for you.

    @Rachael: All the cool stuff going on with you are so very very cool. I hope the cool things keep happening (and more often!) And that this Christmas is a fabulous one (and that your birthday is also).

    WooWoo:
    I am rather unexpectedly dating. Co-worker (I know, I know), different guy obviously, who moved back up here a month ago and have been finding lots of similarities etc. And then he told me about his house (that he shares with his mom, brother and sister), which is old (by Wisconsin standards), and has a tower, and stain glass windows, and a speakeasy (with brewery-not in use) in the basement. Seriously - hidden behind shelves speakeasy. (Nerdgasm!) And of course I was like "I have to drive by that place so I can see how cool it looks", and he invited to show me around and well... the rest is history. Lots of endorphins as a result.

    Boohoo:
    Money is short, bills to pay, Xmas equals stress at work because retail, and I just want the month to be over dammit, because maybe I can start to vaguely relax. Oh, and now that the tires are on, I have gotten a ticket because my registration expired (I had no clue, the letter from the DMV never showed up in the mail). Oh, and the right turn signal light basically fell out of it's place and I've had to order a new one. And my car is making weird noises. And there's something wrong with the keys (I think?). Luckily, boyfriend is a mechanic so he can help me figure out all this crazy, but seriously!? My car hates me. I think that's all I can figure at this point. I'm borrowing my parents' cars until things get sorted. So I'm not screwed. It's just expensive and tiring.
  9.  (11211.39)
    @Alastair: What Rachael said.
    •  
      CommentAuthorVornaskotti
    • CommentTimeDec 19th 2013 edited
     (11211.40)
    \o/

    Strictly speaking, I should be on my way to the last work day of the year, but somehow my ass feels like it weighs a ton here on the sofa. I'm looking at the first holiday in a year and a half, and as far as I can tell the first holiday in my adult life when I don't have a side-job, a writing project, a postponed project or any kind of responsibility, deadline or... anything looming over a holiday or lurking at the end of it. A holiday, where I've booked nothing to do. I'm going to sleep as long as I like, there will be breakfast films at noon and pants optional 'till 6pm. There will be videogaming and sports and everyday adventures with the Adventure Girl. It's hard to put to words how much I'm in the need for this.

    In the dive school, our final written work was accepted, and not only that - since we went so far above and beyond the school's scope, it was reviewed with the criteria of a scientific paper (and duly trashed in the mock peer review ;). I should both graduate and get carded before the end of the year, here's hoping. I got more or less directly offered work in the field, which... well, kind of goes to the bad things column. Half-and-half.

    I can't really believe this day would be here, but yeah, my financial plan has held. Come the end of this month and I can again start ignoring the price tags in grocery stores, there'll be money to save for a trip or two, and I can end the months without maxing any cards or overdrawing any accounts. I still owe a little bit to the bank, but a raise that was just confirmed yesterday will take care of that. I took AG for a Christmas buffet dinner in one of the better place in the city a couple of nights back to celebrate that. Yeah, I guess I'm a material boy, but it feels I got a slice of my life back now. The upside of this is that I've become much more responsible with money. It took a surprisingly long time to get used to living on a salary instead of freelance work - no, you will get just one chunk of money per month, not that steady trickle of 200-600€ bills that'll always save your bacon. Also, Adventure Girl is a positive magician in making small amounts of money to work for her and provide awesome foods and adventures, and living a year with her has been an education as well.

    /o\

    November and December have traditionally been tough months for me. I guess it's some variety of SAD combined with the schedules of the year winding up plus residual burnout. Up here it's the Soul Death Season when you'll see a small sliver of sun when commuting to work and back, and it's dark otherwise - in Helsinki there's even no snow and no proper winter (there was 15.4 hours of sunlight this December and this is a record high amount - I'm not kidding). I don't get depressed, passive and listless, quite the opposite: the stress and the season seem to rather condense things, make them into a tangle that burns bright but ugly, and that makes things flare up. Because this year is generally awesome, the season has been much easier - there's been the outlet of sports and adventure that burn the stress hormones away, the companionship and the feeling of accomplishment, hope and the strong feeling of escaping a whole lot of traps. Didn't go totally without a hitch, though - tenseness, arguments, little fuck-ups. Nevertheless, the stamina bar has been skirting the red, but not hitting zero as in so many years before. This makes me very happy and hopeful.

    Professionally I'm facing one of those choices which I simply hate: sensible or interesting. And this is the biggest of them ever. Without a question I've always opted for the latter, which has lead into an interesting, but a rather ragged and exhausting life. I could get a stint of work in marine bio in the summer, but just a stint, and nothing after that. It's sort of soul curdling to realize I'm opting for the sensible here - continuing in the dayjob where the conditions and perks are really really good. In this economy it would be idiocy to let it go, especially after years of waking up at 4am to run a financial Excel in my head and wondering how to get through the next quarter. That is what I'm going to be telling myself in the summertime when I'm sitting at the office, looking over the sea and thinking of my classmates who are flitting on the Baltic with speedboats doing biological research. Fuck, I'm so not built for this adult, sensible stuff :)

    o/

    @Alastair:

    Yes, I couldn't in a thousand years put it better than Rachael did. Sometimes people fuck up royally, sometimes things just happen, sometimes it happens publicly, and being the kind of guy I am I've had egg on my face, foot in my mouth and crow on my plate far too many times. No matter what the specifics are and who did what, the things to take away from those episodes are 1) not "what I could have done differently" but "what might I do differently the next time something like this looms" and 2) This Too Shall Pass. People rarely care as much as we think they care, but sometimes you burn some bridges in spite of your best efforts and you need to move on. It's of course a challenge or a straight up insult on our self image, but the essence of it remains: the world will keep on rolling in spite of everything, and this too shall pass.

    @Chris:

    Strength, man.

    @Peter:

    Fucking yay! Congrats on the show! When/where can we see it?

    EDIT: Damn, face, uh, this can be enough for now: