Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Dashing madly

Whoa, this is going to be a hilarious week...

Hi! Thanks for the suggestions, Tattoo Queen and Carole - Ikea clearly is in my future. And hugs, to lots of peeps. And my dear anon. zentropa, a lot of cute smart guys seem to hang out in the pre-med classes at Harvard Extension - I'm just sayin'. They move very slowly, though. I happened on a really nice (if weird) bit of serendipity with a guy online but can't really say whether it's a generally workable way to go.

Semester started this week. Bio will continue to steamroll all in its path. Some people in the course this semester didn't have this professor last semester - god, are they in for it (yeah, surprise, dudes, you really *did* need to have read four chapters and master them to understand lecture one. welcome to hell.). I am thankful for the rigor we had with genetics last semester, though, because lecture 1 of another more advanced course last night was wicked pissah easy - we didn't get to stuff I hadn't seen before until, oh, the last ten minutes. Anticipating a really fun ride with that one. The two online courses start sometime today - will see how that goes.

Complicating matters was a sudden crisis with a very old friend - I'll be on call to retrieve him at the courthouse and deal with car stuff today. Oh, also one of my cars is supposed to be done being fixed today. Oh, also I have class tonight. Oh.

I've passed this link along but not posted it - am singing this randomly all over the place. Enjoy!

Monday, January 28, 2008


Well, I'm up. Tried lying in bed for what felt like hours, and then finally got up and it was before 8. Sigh.

The condo is now MINE. I'm making lists of things to bring in and do and stuff. Trying to figure out precisely where to put things, which is rather trick as it is a very, very small apartment. But it's a fun problem to have.

I managed to slip on ice yesterday morning whilst doing my virtuous recycling duty (uh, carrying a whole bunch of empty wine bottles out to the bin), and went Splat. Then yelled "F*ck". Then spent the rest of the morning in so much pain that I felt nauseous. The good part was that I didn't crack my head, or land on the edge part of the granite stair. The bad part was...well, that I went splat on granite on my ass. And it fucking hurt.

I stretched, gently moved around, eventually (about noon) took some Aleve. A few rounds of "Even Flow" on Guitar Hero got my back loosened up, which was great (I have a new favorite song to play! guess what it is!).

Then I drove oldest into Cambridge for her thing at MIT and yes, moved some small stuff into the apartment. Up and down four or five flights of stairs was good therapy. The Aleve kicked in and I managed to eat a scone and some juice at the tea shop around the corner from my building, while I made a list of all the other stuff I need to move in. Went and did some of that. Still mulling over bed and seating. Also what to do about the required electronics for modern life. Sigh.

Thank god my Pilates instructor is also a physical therapist. I expected the workout last night to be agony, but she helped me work around things and I actually felt better by the end than when I started. Yay!

Party on Friday was great! Thanks so much for coming, everybody. I now have more cookies than you can shake a stick at, and also a lot of leftover food (shock! me, make too much food? the very idea!). I was enormously pleased with myself for getting pasta with chicken & pesto & tomatoes, salad, and fajitas all ready for a buffet dinner for 14 in half an hour. True, it would have been a better idea probably to at least do some prep earlier, but hey, life on the edge has a way better view. Also nobody would have been upset if I didn't get it done.

It was really, really fun. I haven't had people over (other than kid birthday parties) since the funeral. It was wonderful. Hey, I like you people!

New semester of classes starts tonight at Harvard Extension. Whee! Bio professor has helpfully suggested we read four chapters for tonight's lecture. Ahem. Also oldest kid has a college interview. Must not forget this.

Off for the rest of my merry, foolish day; have a good one, all.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Hurtling along

I have no sense of time. Not hours, not days, not weeks, nothin'. So January has lasted about three months for me.

I have been puzzled by why I don't have expectations, or even the capacity to fantasize expectations, about any men. I think I got into the habit of just enduring whatever hellishness I was feeling over the last year and three months, accepting how I was feeling, not expecting pain to go on endlessly, just letting myself feel how I was feeling and waiting for the feelings to die down enough for me to speak/drive/walk. I got used to not planning to be particularly emotionally functional at any given time. I seem to be applying that to happy stuff, now, having learned the lesson in my guts with the tearing agony of losing S.

I guess it makes it a hell of a lot easier for a guy to be seeing a woman who's totally uninterested in the usual "oh my gosh we're getting married!" fantasy - I can't possibly go there, or even check the bus schedule that goes in that general vicinity.

Condo closing today, party tonight (see you later!) - gratitude for the boundless love of the people in my life, always.

Friday, January 18, 2008

happy, happy

Squees of general agreeable happiness. And hugs to pansarknitting, and Lorena, and Lucia, and Suzanne (see you tomorrow!) - yup yup yup, relief and all kinds of good stuff. School wise and personal wise. So it's all good.

Also I have gotten halfway through Medium level on Guitar Hero. Stuck at the moment because it looks like I've damaged my disk so that when I'm about to totally kill Slash in the guitar battle, the system freezes up. Phooey. There's a scratch on the disk, I can see it, I'm sure I've screwed something up; just going to have to bite the bullet and replace the disk, I guess.

I got my final paper back from my writing professor this morning, so there is joy in Muddville this day - she loved what I did and is extremely pleased with my work this semester. So I guess I totally rock, dude. It was a kind of weird thing, because there was a snowstorm and we were originally going to have a final class meeting over dinner at an Indian restaurant, but weather dictated cancellation and instead we were to email our final work by midnight. Which I did. Except the fundamental question I discussed in the paper? I had an epiphany at 11:30 and re-wrote and rearranged and flailed about like a ... well, a crazed weasel, actually... and got the paper in just by the skin of my teeth. But that last minute lightening bolt, it was a good 'un. I went from a nice competent piece of writing, to genuinely good work by standards other than academic.

Whee! (yes, this means I got an A.)

Of course now I have very little in the way of articulate words left to say about much of anything. I think I ran out. It would seem I need a bit of a recharge.

On the personal front, the chat(s) referred to cryptically last time have taken place and all seems to be well. Very well. I got together with some knitters I see far too seldom Wed. morning, and went out to the movies with a large gang on Wed. night (happy birthday again, witchypoo!) and yakked everyone's ear off to the point where I'm feeling a little redundant talking about it any more. But I do have a date tonight, and that is pretty neat. And some other logistical things working their way around to see the logistically difficult but wonderful other guy.

Grief group was weird last night. I'm all, gosh I'm feeling great! There's these two guys and it's interesting and fun and and boy I never thought I'd be this happy again! and here's how these other three men friends have helped me emotionally navigate my way through the past year! it's been weird! but it's been really good! Sitting there gushing about that and how my emotional healing has progressed was probably really not that much fun for the new woman in the group who is still in the initial shock of her grief. And the others were a little taken aback, too. I dunno - I felt like I needed to talk about recovering a sexual self, and boy, was that the wrong topic. I sort of thought maybe bad idea, but also thought, hey maybe it'd be good to share that it doesn't stay painful forever. It was okay, yeah, maybe next time, not so much.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Done and done

Well, that was fun.

The semester is now over for me. I took my bio final last night. I turned in my last paper last night. I am done, done, done for a couple of weeks, until it all starts up again. Whee! Whee, both to be done and to have new classes coming up.

The bio had me so terrified that I thought I was going to throw up, but it turned out to be fine, to my never-ending relief. I do actually know pretty much everything I'm supposed to know, after all, and so ... the questions seemed pretty easy, for the most part. There was a really fun long one on the last page where we had to figure out where in a DNA sequence the genes that encode for particular things were, based on exon locations and lab-created spliced fragments and test results for what the created pieces did in response to different media. It was fun! Really! I swear! Okay, it took me about ten minutes just to understand the question, but it was neat figuring out where things went. Also not terrifying.

My alleged love life continues to be sort of nice and sort of vexing, but that's okay. I really don't know what the hell I'm doing, and that would indicate that what I'm doing is "very little actually." Will need to have some chats with various people. Plus there's two guys in bio who are really cute, too! Geez!

I stayed up hilariously late last night after finishing everything, drinking some wine and playing Guitar Hero. Honestly, that game is too much fun. I also have an honest-to-God real guitar thanks to Tattoo Queen (and the guitar, she is beautiful!!!) - whoo hoo! - and music to play with, and am thinking about getting some guitar lessons again. I have this new ability to ask when I don't know things. It is amusing and also helpful and not very psycho at all.

Tryin' to keep that not psycho thing goin'. Good luck with yours, everybody!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Counting down

Yeah, well, it's late, and yeah, I should be doing something more productive to prepare for the stuff that ends my semester tomorrow. Er, today. Egad. Gadzooks.

There's a paper open on my desktop getting some work, to be turned in tomorrow. So that's okay. And there's a final review of biology stuff for the exam, and I really don't know how that is going to go.

I'm feeling really cheerful, though. And trying to not be weird. Or not too weird anyway. I am happy lately, and silly, and it seems to me that once the worst thing happens, you lose a lot of the reason to be afraid of stuff. "Oh no! what if XYZ?" Well, even if everything possible goes right, you could still have a big pile of horrible land on your head eventually. I'm in a space in my head and heart where I don't have expectations, and try to not have them, and try to just be where I am and see how things go, and that's been really nice. Except it's now and then a little tricky. Well, now, actually; it's a little tricky right now.

I need to email somebody, and I need to also try and think a little tiny bit and not overthink and just...well...I don't know. Going with the "facing down what scares me a little" option seems to pan out pretty damn well. Feeling like, oh crap if I say this or admit I feel this then ... I don't know; it'll be embarrassing, maybe? Well, so far, not. So far, it's been good.

I just can't really plan to feel a particular way, because the last year has been such a total "shake ya up and jangle all the pieces around" kinda year. So I have gotten into the habit of just noticing when I'm functional, or happy, and being glad, and that's the end. This is perfectly fine, except that I'm bumping into the expectations of another person and possibly of yet another person, and I don't quite know what to do. Other than not be too weird or overthink things.

I've been relatively forthright - saying in so many words, "I completely suck at definitions," and "I have no idea what the hell I'm doing, but I like you," and "I am trying to allow for the possibility of a whole range of different kinds of relationships," and other such stuff. But....I don't know. I'm feeling kind of strange, about both guys--aha, probably the trick is that I have not mentioned them particularly to each other, so I'm feeling like they only dimly know about a theoretical oddness whereas there's a concrete bit of oddness going on. Ah. Okay, so I'm being a coward. Again. Sigh.

All rightie. Hands, anyone who made any sense of this at all? Right; thought not. Sorry; more coherence, I hope, another time.

Snow is coming! Again! I hope the plow guy comes.

And I'm buying a condo to crash at when I'm at school way late. This is nifty and exciting, to me, and also extremely cheering. I took a walk around the neighborhood today and discovered that the wine shop is terrific (one must-purchase, as soon as I close on this thing: wine called "Irony." Fabu!) and there's some cool places nearby, too, that I hadn't bothered to wander into before. So this is a good thing and contributing to the cheerfulness.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

New vocabulary

This was new to me, at least. I'd missed my exercise class Sunday night because I took the kids to see "Sweeney Todd." This is a really interesting and I think good adaptation of the stage version - I do know the whole damn score by heart, so my take on things may be a little unusual. Anyhow, Tim Burton's stylized blood was great, the visual homage to Edward Scissorhands was subtle and delightful, and they chose to remove all group songs and just use individual pieces sung by non-singers, and it really really worked, I thought. Of course this is some of the most gorgeous music in the repertoire, which doesn't hurt.

Anyway, I missed class and really needed to work out, so my teacher agreed to do a private make-up session with me yesterday - I am now quite sore! - and while I was doing an exercise where I pull my arms back and pull up on abs while lying on stomach and arching my back without straining my back, and yes that's pretty tricky, she said, wow, your back is really cut!

"Cut"? WTF? "J, what do you mean, 'cut'? I have no idea what you're talking about." I was quite sure I didn't have any cuts on there.

So she explained. I guess "cut" means "lots of very clear muscle definition." Well, gee. I never see my back, so had no idea. Go figure.

cheerio, all.

Sunday, January 06, 2008


This is a brief little story that makes me smile, which I thought of several days ago and kept meaning to write about and didn't and now I've remembered to:

Wedding anniversaries were not normally a big thing with S. and I. Of more significance was the anniversary of the day we met, which we quietly celebrated in silly ways. This was mostly because it was a shockingly short time after meeting that we were inseparable, and then living together, and then we had The Talk. Except it wasn't really the sort of talk I'd intended, because I'd envisioned this whole exploration of what each of us thought about commitment and monogamy and all kinds of things like oh maybe marriage as part of a wider discussion, and S. gleefully jumped on and said, "was that a proposal?" and I slowly went, "Um, yeah," and he went, "the answer is yes!" and that was the end of the conversation.

We went ahead and planned a vow exchange with a local justice of the peace, and then a couple of awesome parties to celebrate. No hugeness, no impoverishment; just the getting on with things, really. It had functioned as a marriage from about June of that year, when S. got chicken pox and I took care of him through four days of 104 degrees of fever. The start of the marriage had little to do with the anniversary date.

Anyway, so the wedding itself and "wedding anniversary" meant something different. Not a huge thing, more a quiet smile and a "my goodness, it still feels like we just got started." We did do a nifty getaway to celebrate ten years, but that was unusual.

It was actually a wedding gift to each other. I'm a nerd. He was a nerd. We liked the nerdiness. It was good. We never really planned cards or gifts for each other, or particularly expected them - after all, the anniversary of the wedding was sort of anticlimactic after meeting each other and realizing that this was a Very Good Thing Indeed to be grabbed with both hands. Anyway, it was late, and I was all excited. I got him something! He was sort of cheerful. He goes, "I got you something!" I let him go first, I think.

Well, we both bought the same thing. Something we just knew the other would love, and we had to give right away because we were so excited.

It was Myst. Yes, the original amazing graphics computer game. No consultation, no nothing. It had just come out, it was amazing, and I knew he'd love it. He knew I'd love it.

Laughed our silly heads off. Then installed and got the thing running, duh, and played it for a good long while. And returned the duplicate to the store a couple days later.

Just goes to show, for every dorky guy, there's a dorky gal somewhere. Oh, and if you find something or someone that makes you happy, don't be afraid. The happy is what's supposed to happen. Trust it. Trust yourself.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

In a weird zone

Well, now.

I just need to spew about this somewhere; lucky you!

I'm in a good, and odd, mood. I am always clueless. I never know for sure whether a person I really like, likes me back. I am deep in the middle of this horseshit right now. Honestly, a bazillion emails plus a bunch of other stuff should probably give me a hint. But no, I still am not sure. F'ing idiot. Maybe because it's just such a weird situation.

On the other hand, there are two other particular persons with whom I am not so unsure. One, I am pretty sure about and have been for about twenty years and finally we're going to spend some time together and see what's what. And the other is yet another of the Oh God realization sort of things.

I should backtrack. I am clueless, yes? This is clear, I hope? because I have trouble even when such things are clear. Okay, I am essentially clueless about how other people are responding to me, in particular if there is any kind of sexual element to that whatsoever. There are a lot of reasons, and yes I am working on it.

The Oh God part is that I have been gently forced to deal with my emotions through this grief thing, rather than do what I'd naturally choose (shut them off completely! forever! never go there again!), by three particular men in my life. Of the three, one is problematic, because part of what he does is nudge me rather directly about my sexuality and it has finally backed off "danger zone." One is less problematic, but still complicated; what he does is keep adult emotions and keen wit connected to each other, rather than letting me use wit as an emotional cut-off valve - it stays part of the flirting thing. He's completely aware of what he's doing, able to own it and deal and it's good, but it's still sort of tense now and then. The third guy, I thought was just the sigh of relief, pure joy person without it being complicated. He exudes love and happiness whenever I see him. I figured he just was always like that. Except I think maybe I was wrong about that and maybe it's actually complicated. Which I figured out very recently. Hence the "Oh God."

So of course I've been playing Guitar Hero a lot.

What? What do you mean, escape? It's fun! Really!

Also I wrote a test on OKCupid using the test questions in Blade Runner that determine whether or not someone is a replicant.

Yes, this is what I do when I have final papers to write. I also blog. Why do you ask?

Party at my house! Jan. 25th! If you aren't a creepy stalker, email me if I haven't sent you a thing yet and I'll send you a thing and come on over, we'll have cookies and scotch and stuff. Most excellent. Yes, it is.

Good night, dahlinks.