grrgoyl: (Sunshine I give up)
How do you argue with someone who isn't interested in facts?

And because I despise people who post cryptic things on Facebook in a ploy to force their friends to ask what's going on, I'm going to elaborate.

(And M, I deeply apologize if you're reading this, but I'm so frustrated.)

I had to filter Tery's brother-in-law off my FB because I could not stand one more day of his irrational and constant vitriol against Obama. He's not Republican but Libertarian, something I'm starting to suspect is even worse -- from what I can tell, their only solution to the country is no government at all, crazy as that is, and any other more useful suggestion is met with a blank wall or cries of socialism. So, for the sake of my blood pressure, filtered.

I should make it clear that, apart from this, he really is quite a sweet guy.

I had cautiously decided to unfilter him recently because he seemed to be laying off the political content. That is, until Occupy Wall Street.

Yesterday he posted this link to the "proposed demands" of the movement, some really batshit crazy stuff that truly is a "hippie's utopia," along with a predictably snide comment: http://occupywallst.org/forum/proposed-list-of-demands-for-occupy-wall-st-moveme/

If you're too busy to click, it includes among other things across the board debt forgiveness, a minimum wage of $20/hr, and guaranteed income whether someone is employed or not.

You'll notice today the page contains a disclaimer at the top that wasn't there yesterday, confirming that it's bogus.

I did some Googling myself and came up with this page of much more reasonable demands, most if not all of which I wholeheartedly agree with: http://occupywallst.org/forum/proposed-list-of-demands-please-help-editadd-so-th/

If you look at the urls, they both come from the movement's official page, but they're both in the forums section. Neither of these are the official list.

Do you think pointing this out to him made the slightest bit of difference? Nope. He never even responded to me, and all his smug friends continued commenting on his link and ignored mine. This must be what it feels like to appear on Bill O'Reilly's or Rush Limbaugh's show.

I know, pumpkin. Facts are inconvenient, and it's so much easier to sit around pointing fingers and criticizing than offering actual solutions. So, for the sake of my blood pressure, filtered again.
grrgoyl: (Dr. Horrible)
Nothing big happened this week. However, lots of little things happened instead. Have some bite-sized updates, plus some movie reviews.

I was driving home from work this weekend at 5 am when suddenly I noticed my car sounded a lot worse than it did a second before. It was quite alarming, but seemed to be operating fine. I prayed for it to just get me home (I had about 2 miles to go at this point). I eventually pieced together the engine that now sounded like a motorcycle with a peculiar dragging noise: obviously my muffler had fallen/was falling off. Whew, at least not an engine malfunction.

When I arrived I looked closer: Got it in one. Unfortunately it wasn't the back part hanging down but the front, meaning it was scooping forward like a bulldozer rather than pulling behind.

Tery told me how a similar thing had happened to her first car. She had put off fixing it for about a week, and was told when she finally got it in that she was missing her oil cover and the muffler had been throwing up sparks like crazy -- she had essentially been driving around a Molotov cocktail. She shouldn't be alive.

I got a couple of hours of sleep and then called Firestone. It just figures I was literally a month from paying off my last maintenance visit with them and looking forward to having that extra money in my pocket again. Still cheaper than a car payment, I told myself yet again.

They took me in immediately, which is why I love them. I gingerly drove the two miles or so, my car in obvious distress. At a stop light a guy shouted out his window, "Hey, your tailpipe is dragging!" I toyed with an ultra-sarcastic response, "REALLY? Is THAT the godawful scraping noise I've been trying to drown out with my radio?" But he was only trying to be helpful, so I assured him I was on top of the situation.

At Firestone the guy offered to top off my fluids for free, making it sound like he was doing me a real favor. I was really more concerned about this huge metal thing hanging off my engine, but sure, why not. Tery wondered if "fluids" included gas (of course not).

$650 later and I was on my way. At least it happened after I bought my bike, or else I wouldn't have been nearly so impulsive to get Mamba.

~*~

Ah, Mamba. She has already brought me much pleasure, but I have had my first crash, a much more traumatic event than any damage to my car that doesn't even have a name.

I put pedals with toe clips on her this week. I had these once before and hated them, but that was actually on Rogue Leader and putting toe clips on a mountain bike is a symptom of insanity, even if I had the experience back then that I do now.

The maiden voyage went off without a hitch, and I loved the workout they gave my quads that was previously missing without them. Then on day two I was stopped at an intersection waiting for two cars to pass. A cool parlor trick I do on the bike is balance on the pedals while at almost a complete stop.

Well, as I learned this day, I can do this for one car but not two. I started wavering. I got my right foot out in time but not my left, and WHAM! I went straight down on my left side, exactly like I did that time with the poison ivy. It happened so quickly I actually banged my head on the pavement, so three cheers for wearing a helmet.

I blame the clips (and user error) about 40%; mostly I blame other bikers who ignore traffic rules and barrel through every intersection without a care, so now motorists act like every cyclist is a deer that might unexpectedly leap in front of them (so they drive too cautiously and slowly for my parlor trick).

I took a huge gouge out of the handlebar tape on that side -- this is why I hate buying new things. But fortunately my body bore the brunt of the rest of the fall and nothing else was damaged. Abrasions and bruises heal: a scratched paint job or bent component isn't so easily cured.

And I did have my eye on some awesome handlebar tape, black with tiny white spirals, for the mixte anyway. Maybe it was meant to be after all.

~*~

In not so good news, Tery's friend is dying of end-stage liver failure.

Kristy was Tery's best friend from the bar she used to go to. Kristy worked as a waitress, was more or less an alcoholic (she says less; Tery says more. It looks like Tery was right), and her life was a mess back before Tery had to stop hanging out with her because she simply couldn't socialize outside of the bar setting.

Tery heard she was in the hospital through a mutual friend on Facebook -- also through Kristy, but Kristy is one of those Facebookers who loves to post cryptic, tantalizing hints of news that force everyone to comment, "OMG What's wrong???" (so VERY EXTREMELY annoying and a pathetic attempt to trick people into giving you attention, BTW, any of you who happen to Facebook). Kristy posted things like "in the hospital, guess I'll have to call in sick to work haha" and then "in ICU, now I'm worried. sad face"

Tery went to visit her before her 2-week vacation back home, and reckons Kristy won't live to see her return. She says she's horrifically emaciated with a distended belly full of ascites, and her lungs are filling with fluid as well. They can't give her pain meds because with 20% liver function she can't metabolize them. It's said to be one of the most painful ways to die. She was so disoriented no one told her she's dying; she thinks she'll be going home, going back to the bar and waiting a few months for her liver transplant (so she can get back to her party lifestyle. Even if she did survive this week, they don't waste organ transplants on people who refuse to change their ways) -- hence her flippant, coy little Facebook posts.

Kristy is 32 years old.

Tery is taking it extremely well, considering how close they used to be. Tery desperately wanted her to escape the bar life when she got out, but Kristy was stuck fast. A small irony is Kristy's father died of liver cancer in his early 40's, refusing to quit drinking even at the end. She was so furious with him, and look at her now.

Me, I have even less sympathy. As the mutual friend said, you don't wake up one morning with 20% liver function and go to the ICU. Kristy has had problems for awhile now, vomiting blood, etc. but refused to heed the warnings. At the risk of sounding smug, one night in the ER was all it took for me to change my entire life, and my problem wasn't even that life-threatening. How many times would you vomit blood before suspecting maybe something wasn't right?

With all the uproar about whether or not to legalize pot, I ask why the hell is alcohol legal when it's just as, if not more, dangerous? I guarantee it's destroyed more lives, even without a death involved.

So, yeah, pre-emptive RIP Kristy.

~*~

Dammit, I guess I'm just incapable of keeping my news truly "bite-sized."

Movie reviews!

::The Twilight Saga: Eclipse:: )

Did I say reviews? This one took far too long, I'm quitting while I'm ahead. But just you wait until next time....THEN you'll get it.

~*~

Last but absolutely not least: Got your package today, [livejournal.com profile] velmaneuwirth. You are the sweetest EVER. So much goodness crammed into such a tiny envelope! I can't wait to give Tery her medals, she's going to LOVE them. Andandand you gave me Rickman! (sort of) And BANKSY! LOVE LOVE LOVE that graphic! Thank you so much!! :D (also loved seeing your handwriting. More personal than words typed on a computer :)
grrgoyl: (Dr. Horrible)
I've got a whole bunch of little nothings I feel like writing about, so here they are in handy bullet form:


  • Firstly, for anyone who tried to watch my Heelys video from my last post, don't bother.  I was forced to take it down when one of Tery's employees found it and spitefully showed it to the chief medical director, who then ripped yours truly a new one.  Yes, these fat lazy people who see nothing wrong with spending their day sitting on their fat asses, stuffing their fat faces and dishing about Twilight (trust me, more later), apparently begrudge me my pathetic little extreme sports practice that took up all of fifteen minutes, the length of the average smoke break.  We know this is how they spend their days because they don't have the decency to pretend to be doing anything else when Tery comes downstairs. 

    There also might have been a safety issue, except how stupid would I have to be to try to sue the hospital if I Heely hurt myself?  I don't think anyone would believe it was a work-related injury.  So fuck you all, you useless fat asses.  And believe me, this has done nothing to endear the suspicious party to Tery either. 

    DISCLAIMER: I have nothing against fat people in general, despite flinging the word about insultingly here. It's just these people in particular, who happen to be fat. And very lazy. And cause Tery huge amounts of stress and grief daily.


  • Speaking of bad attitudes, I've gone and developed one over my work situation.  Tery has had to cut everyone's hours in a desperate attempt to get back under budget -- it's that or lay someone off, not that any of her crybaby employees are offering a smidgen of understanding even after being told that those were her only options.  I personally gave up three hours out of my weekend shift, almost 19%.  I didn't mind it at the time, but boy did I feel it in my paycheck.  But it helped Tery, and it's only temporary, so fine.

    Then I got the news they're similarly trying to cut back at the transcription job, and we would be paid 10% less for speech recognition jobs, which comprise 50% or more of my workload.  Need to stay competitive in the market, blah blah blah.  I'll bet Carol Siemen's head popped right off her shoulders when she read it.

    Still, this too I could have dealt with until I discovered the rumor a few months ago about paying a differential for difficult ESL (English as second language) doctors remains an idea they're just toying with.  My head popped right off my shoulders when I read that.  So.  I'm not wasting 15 minutes trying to decipher just one word.  I'm not agonizing over a report slurred and mumbled through by a careless doctor.  No, from now on I'll send them on to Quality Assurance riddled with blanks with a smile on my face, so I can pump out as many lines as possible and not worry so much about doing QA's job for them (hey, job security for QA, right?) 

    My sister thinks with this decision I'm finally reaching the attitude that most of my fellow MTs already share - certainly I'm sure Carol Siemen does.  Fine.  Here I am.  Fuck you, transcription company.  Of course, I probably won't get that 3-cents-an-hour raise I was hoping for next year.       


  • Oh yeah, Twilight.  I've only heard bad about the books, from very reliable sources.  Barely a step above awful fanfiction, was the description I'd heard from several people.  I took their word for it, but couldn't resist finding out for myself.  I found the first book on Amazon with the "look inside" feature.  Started out simple enough, teenage girl moving from Arizona to Washington with her mother.  I read until the line, "I had said my goodbyes to the sun," which is paraphrased directly from the movie (and for all I remember the book) Interview with the Vampire.  Really, Stephanie Meyers?  As if the vampire genre wasn't already derivative enough.

    Worse and worse, I apparently came this close to receiving a deluxe boxed set of the books for Christmas.  Tery's f-boom (short for "fatty boombalatty") employees raved to her about how much I'd love it as a gift.  Thank god she casually dropped a hint to test the waters first.  Fuck you, f-booms.  Fuck you, Twilight, and everyone forgetting that Robert Pattinson was Cedric in the previous hottest film franchise to come from a literary series. 

    Evidently Robert's first act as superstar was to fire his hair stylist. 


    WTF??
     


  • So what else am I into these days?  For starters, I finally got to see Dr. Horrible's Sing-along Blog -- a bit late, I know, but I had to give it a chance to find a second life beyond iTunes, who wants six bucks for all three acts.  Ummm, no. 

    I love Joss Whedon.  Sure, he's a self-absorbed prick convinced of his own genius, but he's also occasionally a genius.  And Dr. Horrible is no exception.  It flounders in parts and the ending seems rather...abrupt.  But the songs are irrepressibly catchy, Neil Patrick Harris is surprisingly talented (and sympathetic), and for such a brief production, Joss manages to incorporate his trademark zero tolerance of all characters sweet and lovable.  The DVD is due out any second now, and is shooting straight to the top of my wishlist.   


  • Facebook.  I thought maybe it was cooler than I had first surmised.  But now, after receiving an error message or a busy signal on my last five log-in attempts, I'm back to thinking it's pretty lame. Also the fact that there are hundreds of users claiming to be Alan Rickman, and what's the point of having a profile that no one can see until AFTER you've begged them to be your friend? 


  • Lastly, through the magic of my f-list, I discovered this photo trickery site.  If you click on the "Lomo" setting, you'll see an easy way to simulate my new favorite genre of photography, Lomo.  Lomography was, as I understand it, inspired by Russian cameras that took blurry, over-saturated pictures.  Originally rejected by photographers, the style gained a following and is now a recognized form of art.  I fell in love with it and have been busy converting as many photos as I can, all for the better in my opinion.  Would you agree?



    Some vanity shots




    I like this result, though they look more like a Russian couple on a farm than Mrs. Lovett and Mr. Todd



    Tery's shot of an arch in Central Park looks like it belongs in a coffee table book



    My favorite. Devil Boy Duncan looks even more unsettling with the added shadows. And the pie looks like an illustration from a 50's cookbook.


         



I'd like to see some of your results, if you want to post them in the comments. No prizes or anything, just to make me happy. : )

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grrgoyl

December 2011

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