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Still not productive

But I gardened a little? Weeded most of a tomato bed, which was nearly a lawn it had so much grass. Prairie? It wasn't mowed. We don't mow the back yard. It's partly laziness, but also a little bit deep enjoyment of the *great* micro ecosystem we've got back there. It's all invertebrates, since we've never gotten around to the bird feeder idea, but it's seriously alive in the way a mowed lawn just isn't, and it's pretty nice. We do mow the front to a bare minimum standard, just to not look like a total wreck, but the back is three raised beds, and then the rest just runs wild, with grass, native plants, and the remnants of some flowers some past owner planted. And also onions, for some weird reason. Dunno what's up with that! I guess there was a non-raised, non-edged garden at some point or something?

We also have the neighbor on one side refusing to deal with the remnants of a past blackberry hedge where it's behind an apple tree from their point of view, so we have to trim back attempts at those taking over, and the neighbor on the other side has honeysuckle, which has kinda eaten the area around the fence between us and which I probably should fight too?

It's a quite small yard, but it's got some things going on. :D

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1594037.html.
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Brains are so weird.

I've been reading about the mask shortage for weeks now, of course. And it's always come with a little thought that goes something like "Damn, I really don't want to take masks that somebody else might need more, and I don't want to deal with price gouging, so I guess I won't even try to get a mask, but it'd be nice to have one."

In all that time, it never crossed my mind that I might already have a mask on hand. Thought never entered my head.

But all this has been text, or if there are photos of a mask, it's on a person.

Then somebody happened to link me to a meme that showed just the mask, and on seeing the image, my brain went "Hey, pattern matching time! Here is a vivid visual memory of seeing that exact object in a supplies drawer in your studio!" And suddenly I remembered that when I did a bunch of resin dremmeling years ago, I got an N95 mask to keep from breathing resin dust, and I still had it. A quick rummage through the misc. supply cabinet, and there it was!

JJ is out grocery shopping while wearing it right now. :D

(And yes, I know people are arguing about how much good N95s do. I continue to think that they're better than nothing, and people putting out things about the virus size do not understand the difference between airborne in droplets and fully airborne. Ebola was fully airborne, the corona virus is not. So long as you take other reasonable precautions, continue to not touch your face, and sterilize the mask after wearing, they're going to be useful. And if nothing else, they keep you from breathing out as much junk, in case you're an asymptomatic carrier, which also matters!)

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1593788.html.
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We are getting a farm share!

Under normal circumstances we hit up the farmer's market basically every week it's open, but although they say they're opening as scheduled in a little less than two weeks, I don't really trust that they'll manage business as usual. Business as usual is jammed with people, and even if crowds are now much less, I just don't trust people to keep their goddamn six feet.

So we'll probably be skipping it for at least the next couple of months.

But how, then, do I get delicious produce? And how do I support our favorite farm, where we usually buy far too many strawberries every year? Well, I was looking them up to see if there were other options, and saw that they had a "Community Supported Agriculture" section on their website. Aka a farm share, aka a box of random produce every week. Or in this case every other week, since with just three of us, one with some food issues and one being four, there's no way we could eat a box every week.

I'm honestly pretty excited. It'll be an excuse to cook more veggie-centered meals, and have salads more often, both things I kinda want to do, but getting the motivation to is hard when pasta is so easy... This should help, since it cuts out the entire "shopping" step. :3

It was kinda spendy, it ended up being $33.75 per box, but then again that's about $17 a week, which feels high but not crazy for a produce budget. There's weeks I've spent that much, certainly, just not consistently.

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1593480.html.
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I left the house today.

Other than walks around the neighborhood, the last time I went out the door was a little over two weeks ago, when I went to my mother in law's and left the goober there for an hour so I could get therapy'd uninterrupted. (Which didn't happen this week, I had to lock myself in a room and ask JJ to take time from work-at-home to deal with the kid melting down about that. Bleh.)

My last trip where I went somewhere I might encounter somebody outside my bubble was grocery shopping nearly three weeks ago, I think?

Today's trip out wasn't strictly necessary, but I'd finally had enough of being inside, and my therapy visit yesterday we discussed things I could do to have something in my life that was a.) not just sitting on my duff, and b.) something I could feel in control of, unlike the course of the nation and my idiot relatives. We landed on my picking up piano again, and doing some indoor herb sprouting to later put outside, both of which are goober friendly too.

So I went and bought seeds and dirt. I looked at little seed planters, but none of them fit the windowsill, they were all too deep, so I'm just using an egg carton. The home improvement store was being *way* diligent about social distancing, they actually had a setup where not only could I stay six feet away from fellow customers, I could stay six feet away from the cashier *and* they had plastic sneeze guards. Somebody thought it through fairly well, it seemed like. It still felt weirdly scary. I didn't touch anything I didn't buy, but still...

Got catnip, majoram, sage, and parsley. I already have rosemary and thyme, and I've given up on growing basil, it's way easier to get at the farmer's market, though God only knows if that will happen at all this year. :( Hopefully, but it's supposed to start in two weeks, and let's say that's not looking likely.

But yeah, gonna plant herbs!

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1593157.html.
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Strange times

To be honest, most of the news about the current crisis has lowered my already low opinion of the human race (people are still having beach parties in Florida! Still! Fetlife has listings for current, active, swingers parties! Some of them are Covid-themed! WTF people! Why are you all so stupid? And the hoarding and the price-gouging, and Trump and just... ugh. Ugh.)

However, there is a small slice of the news that just delights me. Pomplamoose pledging to spend all their Patreon income for a month on hiring other musicians to do from-home recording gigs, so that they can keep people whose concerts and studio gigs have been cancelled in work. 3-D printing groups finding ways to print useful things (though some of those are unfortunately over-ambitious, I have a friend who keeps saying that medical regulations are written in blood, and untested designs *will* kill people, and he's probably right. But they're at least trying, and some of those projects are printing tested designs, thankfully.)

Today I found out about distilleries pivoting to make hand sanitizer. Some of that is just good business, of course. There's a demand, and they can meet it. But it's not just that. One local place is giving 4oz away to anybody who turns up with a bottle, and their first wave of bulk orders were all for hospitals and other vital industries, not just for random people. I am considering dropping by there while I'm out today, since I need to leave the house for once, and I finally have a working car again. Might pick up my free 4oz, and might also spend some funds on one of their more traditional products, if they have any in stock. :3

Edit: Of course my trip out has been cancelled. Oh well, I don't really need booze. Just... Sigh. :(

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1592855.html.
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Tele-worship

Did church via zoom again. It's honestly really nice! Coffee hour after is better in person, but I kinda like the virtual meeting otherwise. If I could send the kiddo off to childcare during the service, I might prefer it! But given that, I will be glad when things go back to normal and we're meeting in person again, though that isn't likely to be for a good long while. They're not planning on any dumbass "back for Easter" nonsense, thank god.

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1592367.html.
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I've resigned myself, or something.

Honestly feeling okay today. Mostly. I mean, I'm depressed, my uterus is still in full rebellion, I haven't had a day off from the goober in... er... I have also lost all sense of time? Several weeks, at least. I did have two hours off Tuesday before last so I could do therapy. Before that I'm not sure.

But like, we're having little to no trouble getting food, our pantry is actually stocked to the point where I'm starting to have mild "But what if we can't eat the perishables and waste some?" anxiety, because my food issues are...weird, put it that way. (I was never personally aware of being food insecure, my parents always got us plenty to eat, but I was raised by parents who were intensely food insecure and literally traumatized by the difficulty of feeding us kids when they were young and poor, so I was taught that to waste food is a literal sin that I should feel immense guilt over. I've gotten much better about being able to, I no longer eat things that taste awful just to not waste them, but I do still fret over the idea of needing to throw out large amounts of food. It's a talent in hard times, I guess, but still...)

Anyway! We're doing fine, JJ got us filet mignons (filets mignon?) to have tomorrow, I just had sushi, I'm steaming an artichoke tonight, all favorites, so it's not like I'm not eating well. Cats are fine, kid is driving me bananas but is fine, everything's fine.

I just feel low-key depressed 100% of the time, and it swings into being outright anxious, fearful, angry, and sometimes totally unable to move. I can't really focus. I haven't written a word in days, haven't written anything like my usual output in weeks and weeks. I keep going through a litany of everything wrong with the world and everything wrong with my life in specific, and it feels so damn unfair that I should have a personally traumatic health crisis, lose my mother and have to deal with family bullshit, and then have the whole damn world melt down all in the space of like six weeks.

And yet actually I'm fine? I'm surrounded by people who have lost their income, can't make ends meet, can't get out to get food even if they could afford it, genuinely fear for their lives if they catch C-19, etc. and I'm not dealing with any of that, not really. I mean, I know people my age (41) aren't completely safe, but I'm still in a very low risk group and my immediate family is even lower. I worry some for friends in their 70s and for my mother in law. I stress about the world some. I'm bored and I can't manage to accomplish shit between depression and no time off from the kid. I'm drinking a little too much again, though that's not spiraled out of control the way it did over my family issues last year.

Everything's just...eh. Not the worst. Not great. Things will be shit for a long time. The world will get much worse before it gets better. I won't get time off from the kiddo for weeks to come, maybe months. It is. I'm resigned. That's as positive as I can manage to feel, resigned.

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1592183.html.
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Two things.

One:

A Prediction About Covid-19, Why I'm Scared And Why You Should Be Too is indeed frightening, (and a little bit clickbaity in the title) but it's also grounded in solid realism and good explanations of actual math and statistics, and I wish to GOD that more people could see it, but it's a My Little Pony Fanfiction blog, so hardly anybody will.

Two: The fact that this and a series of articles by a doctor/BDSM educator collaboration on Fetlife are the two best "explain this to the layman" articles I've read about Corona so far tells me that journalism right now suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks.

I've tried some more mainstream stuff, but I'll be honest. The lack of facts, of numbers, and of real explanations drives me batty. You get either short info pieces with very little info in them, or long, "A woman walks down the street, mask on her face, her expression filled with nervous fear..." stuff that seems to be attempting to write a novel. Or fishing for a Pulitzer. Or I don't know what.

I do not need 4k words if your 5k word article to be "humanizing" the people involved. Most people are not psychopaths, we understand that doctors are human beings. Report. Facts. Explain. Things. Take what the experts you interview know, put that into terms people understand. Leave the fucking flowery language for your retrospective novella after we've lived through it.

Ugh.

Anyway! I loathe modern reporting! It feels like it's either padded out fluff, or wild fearmongering, or total failure to convey useful information. Blurgh.

P.S. Third best explanatory "article" prize goes to the Kurzgesagt video on the topic, which is more focused on what covid-19 is and how it functions, and less about what it's going to do going forward, but does still emphasize the most useful things, i.e. stay home, wash your hands, and gives good info about why those work, the flatten the curve thing, and other useful items. And it's pretty damn good given they usually take months and months to make a video and rushed this one out in a matter of weeks.

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1591732.html.
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Plague oranges

JJ had to leave the house for a bit today, and going out found a bag of oranges on our doorstep. No note, just oranges.

So hey, free oranges!

Given their unknown provenance, though (well, even if I'd known who they were from, given current events) I washed them first. Twenty seconds with soap, just like the handwashing recommendations. :D

So yeah, that was odd. I can only assume somebody overbought and wanted to share rather than waste them? I mean, hell, I could have done the same if I'd ended up needing to resort to the 40lb bag of onions in order to get the like 3 onions I needed, last week when we were shopping!

On that front, I have used the onions, making butter chicken, and pot roast. Both of which have lots of leftovers chilling in the fridge or freezer for later. We have no shortage of food, though we go through milk at such an absurd rate that part of the reason JJ had to go out was to get more, even though we bought four gallons just a week ago. We still have enough whole milk, the goober drinks a lot, but not two gallons a week, lol. But JJ lives on milk, I swear, and I use some myself.

I've been having milk and Oreos in the evening, in fact, because we got Oreos for the goober. Her school was going to have an end-of-quarter party with "dirt pudding", the thing with gummy worms stuck in pudding with crushed Oreos on top so it looks like dirt. She was very excited about this, and kept pulling the flyer off the fridge to talk about it. But of course that got cancelled. So we figured we'd throw her a dirt pudding party at home.

That was a great success, but now we have an awful lot of Oreos, and even more gummy worms. I won't complain, I like both!

This entry was originally posted at https://bladespark.dreamwidth.org/1591540.html.