Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Happy New Years!
Alex read through several of my nightmare descriptions a while ago. He made the observation that, in all of them, I was trying to rescue something or someone.

He thinks that characters in dreams always somehow represent the dreamer, so his theory is that I had been trying to save some part of myself. I don't know if I buy that or not.

It was interesting to me, though, that he looked at the set of dreams as a whole. Rather than trying to analize any single dream, he looked for similarities across the lot of them. I would never have thought to do that.
Busy, busy, busy.
One drink to remember
And another to forget

Excuse me please, one more drink -
Could you make it strong
so I don't have to think?
She broke my heart
my Grace is Gone
One more drink and I'll move on

- from "Grace is Gone" by the Dave Matthews Band
As much as I write on here and as much as I blather on in person, I am insecure about my ability to express myself adequately via the English language.

Give me a canvas and some paints, or maybe a block of clay, and I'll happily create something that I feel suitably represents my thoughts or feelings. These are mediums in which I feel comfortable.

Words, though, leave too much room for imprecision. People can read so much into words that isn't meant, and they can miss so much even when the point has been said. I feel, with spoken or written language, like I'm wielding a sword that weighs twice as much as I do -- there is just no way for me to wield it effectively.

I am not able to be precise. The best words to capture a thought or the best way for structuring that thought often evade me.

Because I lack precision, I am not able to speak concisely. For fear that I'll leave out an idea or be misunderstood because I chose the wrong words or phrased them poorly, I instead swamp the recipient with more words than are necessary. I talk on and on. I fling adjectives here and there, hoping that one will be "the right one" and that my listener will catch my meaning. I fear that instead, this tactic often results in overloading them so that they tune out much of what I say.

I admire people who regularly manipulate language with precision -- who say what they mean, mean what they say, and convey their meaning such that it cannot be misunderstood. I almost idolize them. It's a skill that, more than anything, I wish I embodied.
Have you ever noticed strange similarities between yourself and someone else? First they get the same haircut you have. Then they start flirting with the same people that interest you. Especially if you don't know them all that well, it's a bit weird.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003


I just took two pictures off of my balcony. Whenever I get them developed I'll get them scanned and post them here.

I love looking out at the world I know and pass through every day to see it transformed! People always say to me, "It's only a short drive to see snow in the mountains so I don't understand why you miss the snow," but they just don't understand. The mountains aren't my home. The street I live on, the trees outside my window, the street lamps that light the alleyway where my car sits; these are the things that make up my world. It's magical, a soft layer of newly fallen snow covering it in a blanket of white. Everything that was so ordinary and commonplace is suddenly new and changed. It looks different, it feels different, it smells different. It is invigorating.

So, yeah...



The only downer is that work actually got busy this afternoon and I have to go in tomorrow. I can't just stay home and play in the snow.
To those of you who tell me I just need to ask in order to avoid misunderstandings -

The problem isn't so much that I don't ask; the problem is that I don't know when to ask. I don't catch that I've misinterpreted something. Rather, I think that the other person has been clear and unambiguous, that I have been clear, and that we are both on the same page.

That is, until I find out differently later on. IF I find out differently later on.

I don't know to ask for clarification if I think I understood completely. If, instead, I overcompensate and ask for clarification every time anybody tells me anything, that would get annoying, don't you think?

Example scenario:

"Hi! How are you?," Joe Blow asks me.

"Wait, what do you mean by that?"

"What do I mean by what? I was just asking how you are," he replies.

"Oh, I'm doing alright," I say. "I'm a little tired, but things are going well enough. How are you?"

"I'm fine."

Fine, he said. What does he mean by fine? Does it mean the same thing to him that it means to me? I ponder a minute, wondering if perhaps there was some meaning there that I'm missing or if I might be reading more into his words so far than has actually been there. "What do you mean by fine? Are you okay? There isn't anything you aren't telling me, is there?"

Joe looks at me strangely. "No, really, I'm doing well. What's with all the questions?"

"I'm just trying to understand you better."

"Do you think you've been misunderstanding me?" he asks, looking slightly confused.

"Yes. I mean, no. I mean, I don't know. That's what I'm trying to find out."

"Oh. Er... okay." He blinks. He says nothing.

Why isn't he saying anything?

Does he think it ISN'T okay?! Is he trying to mislead me somehow?

"Do you really think it's okay? What do you mean by okay?"

"Can't you just take anything at face value?" he asks with exasperation.

"Well, I'm just afraid that face value to me might not be face value to you, that something might get lost in translation. It's happened before."

"That's reasonable, but as friends I would think we would have some sort of understanding wherein you might just take what I say and leave it at that." He does not look happy with me. Things could be going better.

Shit! Wait a minute! He's questioning whether or not we're acting on terms that he expects from friends!

Is he questioning our friendship?

Does he view our friendship the same way I do?

What expectations does he really have of me? Does he want to change them?

"Um, I don't mean to be a pain, but I just want to understand what you mean when you say 'friendship'. Are we still friends? Do you want to still be friends? What, in your mind, does that entail?"

"What the fuck is up with all these questions?" His voice is becoming tighter, more constrained.

"I'm just, I mean, er, I don't want any misunderstandings, and- "

Is this some sort of perverted game?"

"No! Like I said, I'm just trying to unders- " He glares at me a moment and then storms off.

"Wait! Where are you going?"

He's at the door, but he pauses to look back at me. "I don't understand!," I tell him. "I just wanted to make sure I don't misunderstand anything you've said to me!"

"You're being such a pain! I don't know why you continue to aggrivate me like this," he growls. Joe turns and leaves, the door closing behind him with finality.


Joe Blow is gone, conversation over.

Sounds like fun, yeah?

I feel these days as if I'm searching for serenity. I am learning that there are many things I cannot change. This is difficult for me to accept; I get riled up and unhappy, obsessing over how things might be different if only I had the power to change them.

There are moments now and again where I feel a respite from the searching, wanting, wishing, and hoping, where I am content to let things be as they are. The agitation and disquietment briefly abate and I am tranquil for a time. Moving into the new year, I hope that I might grow and mature such that these moments become less the exception and more the rule.
I find I sometimes deceive myself.

For instance, someone says to me, "I want to be friends." In my mind, I translate their statement to "I want to be [close] friends."

Immediately I start expecting things of that person that I expect from close friends -- frequent communication, effort put into spending a fair bit of time together, open and frank dialogue -- and I am disappointed when I get less than that. I feel deceived.

The person might spend time with me now and again, talk to me a bit, keep up on some level with everything going on with me -- not necessarily acting as a close friend but certainly interacting with me as more than just a casual acquaintance.

In their mind, we have a friendship and it is exactly what they asked of me. They are living up to set expectations.

In my mind, however, because I read more into their original statement than they had meant, I feel let down.

I catch myself doing this sort of thing every now and again. It makes me wonder how often I do it without catching it. How many of my disappointments are really the product of my own internalizations? How often do I interpret things differently than they are meant and then feel misguidedly walked-upon when the situation doesn't pan out as I expect?

Once I realize my error (if I do realize my error), the negative feelings immediately begin to fade. The anger, hurt, and resentment slip away and I am more easily content.

I don't know how to make sure I understand people's statements more clearly. I think if I could do so, if I could be on the same page from the start, I would ultimately end up a happier person. Maybe people don't flake out as often as I tend to think they do? Perhaps instead, I misinterpret or misunderstand expectations that they communicate to me, which invariably leads to later misunderstandings and disappointments.
As I was heading out to walk my dog this morning, I heard a voice cursing in the hallway. "Bitch!" When I exited my apartment, I was surprised to see, of all people, my landlord --- a usually courteous and pleasant man. He was standing at a resident's door down the hallway from mine looking rather peevish. His demeanor changed, however, upon seeing my dog and me.

"Hi Louie," he called brightly. "Hi, Kathryn. How are you?"

"Good. And yourself?"


Louie and I walked on. As we were about to exit the front door of the building, I heard him cursing again. "Goddamnit," he muttered, "who does she think she is?"

Did he think I couldn't hear him? It's strange how people act one way when they perceive themselves to be alone but act another when in the company of others.

I wonder what was up with him, what had happened to make him so irate.

Monday, December 29, 2003

I've been reading Lady Chatterly's Lover by D.H. Lawrence. Rather than associating with the heroine, I've found myself relating to her cuckolded husband, a worrisome and clingy creature. I'm not quite sure why.
Thank you to all of you who checked up on me this weekend, calling or writing consoling emails. Whatever else may go right or wrong in my life, I am blessed to have some of the best and dearest friends I could ever conceive. You are good to me and I am thankful.
A few nights ago, I visited a book store. I had a strange experience. Somehow I ended up in the Sociology section. It was a tiny section, spanning just a single bookshelf, but somehow it contained almost every book I ever remember Jeremy reading.

How odd.

I had started a few of them when he was around and had liked them, so I picked them up again now. Yay for books.
At the grocery store the other day, Mary picked up a super-hot pepper for making quesadillas. The weight of the pepper wouldn't even register on the scale when the checkout lady tried to ring it up, so she finally billed it at $.01. "All the heat you can handle for a penny," she joked.
On some level, I guess I feel like I deserve all the drama with Mike.

I'm a hypocrite. Over the last several months there have been a number of times where I have treated Chris as poorly as Mike has treated me. I was trying to create distance, and I did it in the ways that were easiest for me, not the ways that were fairest to him. I feel guilty about how I handled things and about how I have treated him; now, at least, it's finally out in the open.

Chris, I'm sorry.
Back to blogging, at least a bit from work. I still don't feel like being on much from home for now.

Sunday, December 28, 2003

I think it's best if I stay offline for a while, outside of work. Signing off now; best wishes to you all until I return.
I never thought anybody could hurt me so much that I wouldn't want to see them again.

Or, if it ever came to that, I thought it would only be because I hated them so much, because I couldn't stand the sight of them.

Ironic, then, that it's finally come that, but the reason I can't bear to see Mike anymore is that I love him. No hate at all. I can't see him anymore because he is far too inconsiderate. He walks all over my love and hurts me time and time again, and it tears me apart. I need to break away so that I can salvage something of myself, so that hopefully, somewhere down the line, I will be able to love someone else who will cherish and return my love. I'm afraid that if I continue to see Mike that resentment and bitterness would eventually consume me. I'm afraid that I would never move on, that I would never be able to give real love to anyone else again.

It would be easier if he had drawn the final boundaries and cut me off so that I wouldn't have to bear this burden. He doesn't love me now anyway -- it wouldn't have hurt him as much as it hurts me. I'm so scared that I'm throwing everything away, that things could work if I didn't push. I'm terrified that I'm sabotaging something really good, even though I know deep down that isn't the case. I'm second-guessing myself all the way and it's such a difficult decision to begin with.

My whole life feels like a waking nightmare right now. It's horrid, having to push away people that mean the world to you. They mean the world to you! The world! So when you push them away, what is left? Nothing at all. A complete void.

I know I can build up something again with time, that my life is not over, but it doesn't feel that way right now.

I feel as depressed as I can ever remember feeling. Part of me wishes I could sleep tonight, never to wake up again. I have a dog and birds that depend on me and several close friends who would miss me terribly should I die, so suicide is not an option. I can see the appeal, though. An easy out when nothing seems worthwhile and life and love seem merely a cruel farce.

I need some sort of serenity. I need to be able to accept letting him go. I wish I could have some sort of reassurance that this is the best thing to do, that it is the only thing to do, that he doesn't love me and won't love me again and there's nothing of any worth or promise to be thrown away. I wish I had some sort of assurance that I wasn't making a huge mistake. This has been building for so long now -- I think this is where the nightmares have been coming from, knowing deep down that things are as they are and that I would have to ultimately take this action -- and I think it was so upsetting because I've never really been certain enough to follow through. Still second-guessing. Still doubting, even as things have gotten so dire that I feel I have no choice but to take action and push.

And not for hate, but for love. For stupid, loyal, undying love.

Saturday, December 27, 2003

I picked up the Bridget Jones soundtrack the other day. It jives well with me.
I knew the signs, it wasn't right
I was stupid for a while
Swept away by you
and now I feel like a fool

So confused, my heart's bruised
Was I ever loved by you?

Out of reach, so far
I never had your heart
Out of reach, couldn't see
we were never meant to be

Catch myself from despair
I could drown if I stay here
Keeping busy every day
I know I will be okay

But I was so confused
my heart's bruised
Was I ever loved by you?

Out of reach, so far
I never had your heart
Out of reach, couldn't see
we were never meant to be

So much hurt, so much pain
Takes a while to regain what is lost inside
And I hope that in time, you'll be out of my mind
and I'll be over you

But now I'm so confused
my heart's bruised
Was I ever loved by you?

Out of reach, so far
I never had your heart
Out of reach, couldn't see
we were never meant to be

Out of reach, so far
you never gave your heart
In my reach, I can see
there's a life out there for me

- Gabrielle, "Out of Reach"
My dog got in big trouble today.

We heard a knock on the door, so I went to answer it. Turns out the postman had dropped a package for me in front of the doo rather than dropping it by the mailboxesr, had knocked to alert me, and was walking away. This would all have been fine and dandy except that Louie bolted out the door, barking like a mad dog, and chased the mailman down the hallway.

The mailman ran. The dog chased, barking and growling. The mailman looked scared and continued running. I yelled to my dog to stop and sit, and I chased the dog. I caught the dog. I scolded the dog. The mailman gave me an extraordinarily unhappy look and left.

Bad dog, Louie. Not cool at all.
Love, I am so different
Love, I am so different
Love, I am so different than before

Love, can I be loved?
Love, could I ever really be loved?
Love, if you ever find me
I wonder
will you try me?
I’m so different than before

Love, the kind that I dream of
It starts right here inside of me, love
Love, if you ever find me, I wonder, will you try me?
I’m so different than before
Love, I am so different than before

Love I am so different
Love I am so different

Love, where are you waiting?
In dark and smoky rooms I hear you singing to me
Love, let my voice take you
And the songs we’d make would be so different than before
Oh yes my love, if you ever find me, then I ask you try me -
I’m so different than before
Love, I am so different than before

Love I am so different
Oh, oh so different
So, so different
I am so different
Love I am so different than before

The word is out, the time has come
Begin again and reinvent my love
Make it strong with arms so long
It stretchin' out to everyone
And nothing replace this blissed out space
This is what I wanted, this is what I made
Every little thing’s gonna be all right
One day soul mate, you’ll be mine

Love, this time you won’t mistake me
I’m ready, love, for you to take me with you
Love, if you ever find me, I wonder - will you try me?
I’m so different than before
Oh yes my love, I know when you’ve found me,
You’ll wrap yourself all around me
Oh, so different than before
Oh yes my love, I know you will show me,
In words you’ve never told me
So different than before

Love I am so different
Oh, oh so different
So, so different
Mmm, so different
So, so different -
Love I am so different than before

- Rosey, "Love"

I'm forever getting my hopes up about stupid or unlikely things. Every time, I feel slightly surprised even as I am let down.

Why don't I learn better? What prevents me from being more realistic?

Friday, December 26, 2003

I just finished watching Jerry Maguire. Mary and I started it together, but she left partway through to go ice skating with friends and I decided to finish it on my own.

At the end, I was left feeling introspective, contemplative. Movies like that leave me wanting to be a better person. Certain books sometimes have the same effect. They make me want to approach life in different, more effective ways. I want to rethink what I put into my work and into my day-to-day life. Even moreso, I want to rethink my approach to my personal relationships.

Sometimes I tsucessfully act on the inspiration. Things feel so much better when I do, and I can feel healing and growth in my relationships. Unfortunately, it never lasts. Somehow I always fall back into the same old stagnant patterns. Strangely enough, in Jerry Maguire a bit character had a line that touched on that topic; she asserted that it's hard to change behavioral patterns because our neural pathways have already been formed in certain ways. That may be so, but I don't think it has to constrain me. I just need to find a way to hold on to inspiration, to remember it even after the initial glow has faded.
On the topic of personal hells, sent to me by a friend:
"God does not punish us; we punish ourselves. Those who are in hell are there by their own choice. Indeed, they could walk right out of it if they so chose, except that their values are such as to make the path out of hell appear overwhelmingly dangerous, frighteningly painful, and impossibly difficult. So they remain in hell because it seems safe and easy to them. They prefer it that way. This situation and the psychodynamics involved were the subject of C. S. Lewis' fine book The Great Divorce. The notion that people are in hell by their own choice is not widely familiar, but the fact is that it is both good psychology and good theology."

M. Scott Peck MD, People of the Lie
I had a nightmare again last night. The theme this night centered around betrayal.

How do you deal with feeling betrayed?

Moving on seems the only sane thing to do. It's hard though, because you want to feel, at least, that the person who betrayed you knows that they have hurt you. You want it to matter to them. But if you focus on that, if you spend energy dwelling on what they have done that was unjust or unkind, wishing they noticed or cared, then you never move on. You get caught up in your own little personal hell. Worse, it becomes more of your own making than theirs. They carry on as they would anyhow, seemingly impervious.

Brutus and Judas Iscariot both showed guilt, compassion, and sorrow after their crimes of betrayal, but these are highly dramatized characters painted in an ideal light. I cannot assume that they have any real bearing on the smaller interactions of people like you and I. It is unfounded for me to presume that, for simply having hurt me, anyone would feel the same sort of guilt and sorrow.
Louie and I watched part of Winged Migration while I was trying to fall asleep again this morning. Beautiful screen shots! Louie gives it five stars; he has never been more interested in anything that I've played on my television. He watched intently for all the while it was playing! It was actually a little strange, as I've never really seen a dog watch TV before.
This insomnia thing is getting old. I mean, really, what sort of normal person wants to be up, all alone, at 4:00 AM?

Thursday, December 25, 2003

Yes, Andrew, solitude builds character. I am sure you will all be amazed, next time you see me, at how my character has grown and matured in such a short time. ;-)

Anyhow, Miles will be out of the bathroom in a moment, and then it's back to Bridget Jones's Diary. Serious business, this movie.
Miles isn't going to be here for another 50 minutes. This has felt like one of the longest days in memory.
Nobody's online.

I guess I'm not surprised; it is Christmas, after all. It just makes me feel a little bit more lonely. This is the first Christmas day ever that I've spent alone, you know? They weren't always spent with my family -- sometimes I spent them with the family of the boy I was dating -- but they were always spent surrounded by people and good cheer.

I called Miles to see what he's up to, but he's not answering his phone. I guess I'll just go back to reading my book.

Merry Christmas, all. Ciao.
During a nap just now, I dreamed that my birds were attacked by four different raptors, and a barn owl punctured Pookie's chest with one of his feet and claws. I was rushing her to the vet when I woke up.

Always with the nightmares.
Someone from my apartment building found my blog last week when googling for information about the accident out in front of our building. What a small world.
It sure has been a long time since I've made it to the dog park. Louie had a glorious time chasing around with all the other pups, playing in the mud, splashing in the river. He was so excited that he had a long string of drool swinging from his chin for most of the outing. We had a good time, though, and I think I got a few good pictures.

The drive over was a little long. I'm glad I moved into the city; if I hadn't, I don't think I'd be dancing so much anymore. It's just too much of a commute.
Merry Christmas to my dog! I'm taking him to the dog park; we haven't been there for quite some time.
Yay for Jewish friends. In response to my sad entry last night, Miles wrote and said that he would watch a movie or two with me tonight if I were interested. It's not quite the same as having my family here still, or having a boyfriend to take me in and make me a part of their family celebration (although I am very happy and excited for Mary) -- in fact, it has nothing to do with celebrating Christmas at all, but it's also not sitting at home lonely.
Nightmares again last night. I dreamed that I found a half-naked, semi-conscious young girl in a field behind a university building, covered in blood and mucus, having been raped. She was muttering something about a 2 year old, leading me to believe that she had gotten into this condition trying to help a tiny child who was being terribly abused.

I had been walking with someone and got them to sit with her, and I then ran to the security desk in the building to call 911. I kept trying to call 911, but it kept going to civilian phones, and more than that, to people I knew. To the voicemail of friends, to my family. And they were alll being unhelpful, shallow, saying poisonous things. Then there were people who, instead of helping, were just standing around disparaging the girl. I was so desperate to get her help but could not manage it.

Why do I dream things like that? I'm still a little tense, even though I've been awake 15-20 min.
My family leaves tomorrow morning. I'm a little bummed already. I'm going to make the most of the rest of the time we have; I decided to stay the night at my aunt's house. After I finish this entry I'm going to head upstairs to stay up late and watch movies with Susie.

Tomorrow, all my friends are busy celebrating with their own families. Mary will be off at Christmas dinner with her boyfriend and his family. I, however, have nowhere to go and nobody to spend the time with. It will be a lonely Christmas, especially after all the good company and companionship I've had these last few days. I'm not looking forward to it.
Another good day! Except for being so tired. My lesson with Jaimes was great. Went shopping in the afternoon -- good company, but it took a long time and I was quite late meeting up with my family. It all worked out well, though. We had an enjoyable time opening gifts together. Mary made Christmas Eve dinner -- it was scrumptious! Turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, corn casserole, scalloped potatoes, blueberry pie, and cherry pie. Yum! Then we played games; fun, as always. Mike came over late in the evening and joined up in the games, which was nice. And I remembered to take pictures! Not as much as I would have liked, but still more than not at all.

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

How am I going to get up in 5 hours? I'm glad I don't suffer from insomnia often, because I dislike it tremendously. The nights awake are lonely, and the days are long and tedious because I'm so tired.

On that note, I'm off to attempt sleep again. Goodnight, world.
Merciful Jury Spares Evil Malvo From Death, reads one of the current headlines from the New York Post. The article itself is worse.

"Evil Malvo"? Granted, he did terrible, terrible things, but what is up with the prejudicial way in which the media phrases things these days? I've had enough of "reign of terror", "axis of evil", "enemy combatants", "war of liberation", "war on terror", and over-use and application of terms such as terror and evil in general, whether applied to Malvo, Iraq, or anything else. That sort of language seems to be thrown about with wild abandon. I can read about the sniper shootings and about Malvo's trial and determine for myself that he did horrible things; I don't need for it to be spoon-fed to me. This isn't news -- it is sensationalistic propaganda.

Brian Eno posted a column along some of the same lines in the Guardian a while back. Decent reading.
Wallmart makes me sad.
I had a Tango lesson on Monday night, in which we spent the majority of the time doing Yoga and various other exercises to build up my center. We did very little Tango at all. It was good for me, though. Frustrating. I hadn't realized how weak I really am in my core. After the lesson I went back to Sonny's, and even with that short workout my dancing felt so much better to me. Perhaps it was due to a heightened awareness of my center.

Sometime in the near future, I plan to take up Yoga as a new hobby. Jaimes and his cohorts go to a studio in Ravenna that they like, and Dano attends a program that meets early every morning at a studio near my apartment. I'll dabble in both for a while, unless I find right away that I prefer one to the other.
It's a strange world.

When we went out into the alley behind my building to get my car today, we found a pile of charred woodchips. A neighbor told me that some homeless folk built a small fire last night, right there in the alley, and cooked steaks over it. I am glad for them, whoever they are, that they had a good meal this week.
I heard on the radio today that the jury for Malvo recommended life imprisonment without parole. They did not impose the death penalty. Several times, the broadcaster indicated that this may have had something to do with the timing of the verdict, that capital cases tried over the week of Christmas tend not to do as well and penalties imposed are generally less harsh.

Why is it that it has to be the week of Christmas for a jury to revere life and choose to be compassionate? Why can we not act with such thoughts on our mind every day throughout the year?
Tonight, I took my family to Rom Mai Thai on Broadway. We ordered a number of dishes I had never tried, as well as the favorite standards; Chicken Satay, Beef Panang, and Swimming Tofu. They were all delightful! The staff, as always, was incredibly warm and friendly. I felt warm, happy, content -- strongly connected again, for a moment, to a family that has been slipping away over the years.


Last week, I picked up a disposable camera so that I could take pictures while my family was here. I keep forgetting to bring it along. I find myself constantly bemoaning that oversight, as the last several days have been some of the best in memory. So many moments to treasure. Without photographs I am left to rely on memory alone, and my memory is not to be trusted.

I guess that's not quite true; I'm left also with short journal entries like this one. So, to myself, when I read this again some day -- remember the goodness of this Christmas vacation. Don't get stuck on the petty disappointments and the "could have been's"; instead keep in your mind all the good times that you've had with people you care about. Apples to Apples at Karen's house, with mommy, daddy, Mary, Susie, Karen, Andy, and both the Alex's. Lord of the Rings as a big happy group. Hours spent wandering around in the craft store; mommy, Alex, Mary, Susie and I all equally enchanted. The rack of stuffed Audubon birds that delighted even my father. The first day, eating at IHOP after Mary and I picked everybody up from the airport; okay food, but wonderful company, the five of us all reunited for the first time since last year. Eating, laughing, exchanging jokes and affectionate insults, enjoying the proximity of each other. Making soap with mommy, Mary, and Susie -- watching Mary become enthralled with the process, simple joy evident on her face. Louie getting into the soap I made for Karen, trying to eat each piece, only to decide it didn't taste as good as it smelled and moving on to try eating the next. Movies at Karen's house; snuggled in all cozy with one another, watching the extend version of Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and Finding Nemo. My parents, my sisters, and I all squishing into the car along with my dog, both the first day on the way from the airport, and today on the way to and from the ferry.

These are the things that I hope I remember. Every day this week has been Christmas to me, filled with so many people I love and with such good spirit. My only regret is that I could not share it with everybody I love, that some people I would have here have not been.

Today on the ferry, I went up to the top level and struggled against the wind. It buffeted my body, whipped my hair all about me in a wild frenzy.

I stopped struggling. At this, it took hold of me and embraced me. The more I leaned into it, the more it cradled me. I leaned forward into it, then backwards. Slowly, I walked backwards into it, leaning against it, letting it hold my weight. A feeling of euphoria overtook me. All that I knew was the wind. It was all that I could feel, all that mattered. The wind held me. It toyed with me, teased me, but also comforted me and followed through on all promise. It led me in an intimate dance, singularly brushing away all other thought.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

You know when someone stands you up and doesn't even bother to call or send a note to offer an explanation and/or an apology? It sucks.

18 hours now without either; I guess that means neither is forthcoming. I don't know why I continue to let myself care.
Ferry = fun! Louie wasn't crazy about the big motors, though.

A flock of hopefull seagulls flew alongside the boat. Very cute.
I'm not good at waiting. My family's still sleeping and puttering the day away at my aunt's house, and I've been up for hours. Why aren't they ready? Aren't they excited? :)
LotR: RotK was excellent. I still like the first movie best, though.

Today, going riding on ferries. Maybe even up to the San Juan islands, although I don't know that we're quite that ambitious.

Monday, December 22, 2003

Today my family and I are going to see Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. Woo hoo! I'm excited, despite my ire at learning that they cut out Saruman completely. Stupid cutting choices. At least he'll be in the extended version, although it'll be another year before I get to see that.
I'm really glad my family is here. The last two days have been wonderful! The next three days will be more of the same, I'm sure, up until we drop them at the airport -

After that, I'm afraid this will be a long break. There is the chance that it may drag on unpleasantly, seem never to end, all the more so because I had expected it to fly by in a wash of colors and good feeling, a series of moments I would want to hold on to always and treasure forever. I never thought I'd say this, but I think I'm glad I'll be back at work the first part of next week.
Imagine that you're involved with someone. Say, then, that the people closest to them dislike you, and they do nothing about it. They don't defend you, they don't stick up for you, they don't even tell their loved ones, "I'm involved with so-and-so, so you need to deal with that and you need to act decently toward them." Instead, they avoid the issue. They try to keep their involvement with you low profile. They don't really talk about how involved with you they are or don't mention the involvement altogether. They blow you off sometimes when it might mean letting the disapproving friends and family know about the extent of their involvement with you, when it might mean facing up to their disapproval.

Is that cause for offense?

Is it cause to think that perhaps something is wrong, that perhaps something was always wrong? Is it a possible indication of a lack of care and concern for you and your feelings?

Is it nothing to worry about? Maybe things are just like that, sometimes, and it doesn't mean anything at all.

Should one expect that people they are involved with will defend them to friends and family, advocate for those friends and family to like or at least act civilly toward you? Or would an expectation like that be out of line?
I let myself think that things are a certain way just because I want them to be that way, even when I know somewhere deep down that they aren't true. If ever I do face up, for a moment, to the un-truth of my beliefs, there's this little voice in my head telling me that I can make it true; that if I try hard enough I can sway it over, I can make it all happen the way I want it to. I can be enough and do enough to make it work, to make it into what I want it to be and what, generally, I even let myself believe it to be.

Why do I do that?

Why is my grasp on reality so far off?

Why do I keep doing that, even when I can see that I do it?

Why do I want things so badly, even when I know I can't have them, especially when I know I can't have them? Am I some sort of masochist?

I'm so scared. I'm scared to lose things, scared to lose opportunities, scared to lose people, even when I actually never really had them. I'm frightened out of my wits at letting go of my illusions, because what if they really weren't illusions, and, in letting go, I am actually giving up my only chance at making it work? But if I really have just been deceiving myself, then that's an illusion in itself, isn't it. And yet I cling so hard, and I can't let go for all the "what if's".

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Recently, someone I know got caught up in some internal drama that revolved around me, except I wasn't even really a part of it. They had a number of assumptions built up about me and then somehow the assumptions changed and they reached some new, dramatic conclusion about me. I only know this because they gave me a sort of expose run-down after the fact. Feels strange, like I'm somehow a part of something I'm not a part of? Like I'm disconnected? Like they're disconnected. I don't know... so strange.
Sometimes I feel like I'm just a hamster in a wheel, running and running but I never actually get anywhere.

Friday, December 19, 2003

Twice now, I've struggled to find gifts for friends only for them to tell me later, "You should have checked Amazon!"

I'm a technically savvy person, right? Why don't I think of things like that? Amazon wishlists -- I have one. Ants and Val picked up Strictly Ballroom for me; a lovely movie, and I'm delighted to own it now. And I could have picked up something for them that would have delighted them as well -- they both have wishlists -- but I am too lame, oh so lame! And Alex, he has a wishlist too; heck, he worked at Amazon, but I never think to go there straight off. The lameness! For shame!

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Holy shit -- the craziest car accident happened outside my apartment tonight. If I had a camera, I would have taken a picture to post.

So, I live on an intersection: Summit Ave and Olive Street. Summit has the right of way; there are yield signs marking both directions on Olive. My building faces Summit. The second level of the building is "street level" on that side of the building. There is a drop between the sidewalk and the first floor of the building, with a walkway coming up to the front door over the divide. If you can't picture that, think medieval times; there's an area between the building and the sidewalk which would make a great moat, only it's not filled with water and there are no sea monsters.

So anyhow, apparently this taxi cab comes careening down Olive and hits an Audi. The Audi goes flying through the railings which line the sidewalk side of the divide, and down into the divide. I'm not quite sure how it happened, because it barely fit. It was on its side, down in the hole, about as snug as a piece of bread in a toaster. It was such a mess that I didn't know how anyone could have come out okay, but noone was hurt. The guy in the Audi found himself hanging upside down in his car and pulled himself out. When I got home he was standing there taking pictures of the battered car and of an elaborate process for pulling the car out, involving many steel lines and many tow trucks.

I watched until they had pulled the car out and managed to tip it back right-side-up on the street, and now here I am. What a night.
SWEET! I want one!
On the bright side, I do other people's work well. I fixed everything for the other tester within an hour's time, and she would have struggled over it for days.
Thinking of buying a new house? Consider an Airplane Home!
Why do I always get stuck doing someone else's work?

First it was Mr_X0, always pushing stuff off onto me that he should be doing. Now it's Ms_Z0. She can't get anything set up and running, so she and Mr_X2 are begging me to go in and fix it all for her. Bugger it all.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

One of my wisdom teeth is fractured. My dentist thinks it's best to just get them all out now, and I saw an oral surgeon yesterday who concurred.

Problem is, my current health insurance does not cover dental and does not cover oral surgery, so I'm paying entirely out of pocket. It's going to be expensive; I have resigned myself to that. But how expensive? Herein lies my dilemma:
  • Base price for extraction of all four teeth, plus the office visit: $968.

  • It will be $385 extra, on top of that, to be fully sedated so that I am sleepy.

  • If I want to skip the sedation but have a bit of laughing gas on top of the local anesthetic, that's $89 extra.

  • If I chose to go with just local anesthetic, I will pay nothing on top of the base price.
So how painful is it, really? The nitrous oxide and/or sedatives are meant to control anxiety, not pain; it's actually just the local anesthetic that controls the pain and that is always applied, with or without sedatives.

Am I anxious? I don't think I am. I've had teeth out before, and it's been no big deal. And it sounds like my wisdom teeth should be pretty easily extracted, since they are all mostly grown in and easily accessible.

But I don't know anyone who's ever had their wisdom teeth out and NOT been sedated.

Would I be stupid to choose not to be sedated myself?
Jaimes has introduced me to the joys of fresh produce. Today on the way to the bus stop, I had an organic navel orange. Yum! Last night, I made a cabbage and kale salad as part of dinner for Mary and I -- cabbage, kale, fresh roasted almonds, dried cranberries, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and a bit of olive oil. Also very, very nice.

Strangely enough, I seem to feel better, in general, when I am eating better. I've been eating quite well recently, and I feel fabulous. Go figure.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

I did finally browse over to craigslist. Tres cool.
Hmm. I haven't been blogging so much lately; not sure what's up with that. I guess I just haven't had any blog worthy thoughts in the last several days? (And, although I am blogging this one, it probably isn't too blogworthy itself.)

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Today, I was a super-dork.

I went to Target this afternoon -- shopped for general household supplies I've been needing to pick up for some time, and did a bit of Christmas shopping. Several hours passed before I was ready to go, and by then my legs were aching and I was encumbered by a shopping cart full of stuff that I needed to lug to my car. The bags weren't packed into the cart very well, and every once in a while something would fall out. I was getting all flustered trying to keep everything together. I finally got down to the level of the parking garage that I remembered having parked my car on -- and it wasn't there. My car was not there! I ran up a level to see if I had remembered wrong, but it wasn't there either. It also wasn't two levels up or one level down from where I remembered parking it. I was getting super stressed out, and there was this cart full of stuff that I had to leave behind every time I ran up or down a flight of stairs to search for my car.

I finally went into the Target customer service area to ask if I could leave the cart there while I figured things out. They said sure, and then they called their security, who in turn called parking security to come and help me.

I was really starting to freak out. Could my car have gotten towed somehow? What if it was stolen? Was there anything in it that I really cared about? My dance shoes and my little black notebook were both in there - crud. I sat stressing out for maybe 10 minutes, and still no sign of parking security. Then, on a whim, I ran to check TWO floors down from where I remembered having parked my car.

Golly gee, there it was.

I'm such a dumbass.
I went over to Jaimes and Rachel's place for a bit again tonight. We all hung out in their room - Jaimes showed Jeff and I some blues riffs and a scale on the guitars, and we had a jam of sorts. Jaimes came up with the great idea that we should switch off between people on the guitars and people giving/receiving "massagees".

Jeff and I played for a bit, and Jaimes gave Rachel a bit of a back massage. Then Jaimes played with Jeff and I continued Rachel's back massage. After a bit, I switched back to playing on guitar, and Rachel gave Jaimes a really nice back massage.

At some point, we all switched again and Rachel gave me an amazing back massage. Amazing! I don't think I've ever had a massage that was so nice. I felt bad because the one I had given her was so sub-par in comparison.

John got home a while later and he and Jaimes took over the guitars. Jeff sat down on an edge of the room just to listen -- Jaimes and John are pretty sweet to listen to when they get going, very inspiring -- and I gave Rachel a really thorough foot massage. It felt really good, really putting all of myself into the massage, almost better than it had felt receiving the one she had given me earlier. Strange how that works. Anyhow, between that and the music, I was in another world, so warm and bright and happy.

Then, all of a sudden, it was 3:00 am. Everyone crashed and I went home.
Mozilla is a piece of crap. It's always #@%# crashing, losing data all over the place. And the back button is broken, and so is "open in new window", so you can really only browse forward on a straight, linear path. It sucks.

Saturday, December 13, 2003

To everyone:

I am actually doing okay. Some of my recent posts may have seemed pretty down-in-the-dumps, but I think that's as much because it was late at night and I was sleep deprived as it was anything else. I mean, things aren't perfect - but are they ever, for anybody? - and there are certainly things that need changing, but I am holding up well all things considered.

Friday, December 12, 2003

Well -

Mr_X0 just told me that he's accepted a position somewhere else.

He'll be out of the office for the next two weeks. He may come back for a bit after the holidays to transition work, but after that he'll be gone, gone, gone. Crazy.

I almost think I'll miss him.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

I wear this crown of thorns
upon my liar's chair,
full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair.
Beneath the stains of time
the feelings disappear
You are someone else
I am still right here

What have I become?
My sweetest friend -
Everyone I know goes away
in the end

And you could have it all,
my empire of dirt

I will let you down

I will make you hurt.
(Typed verbatim from Johnny Cash's version of "Hurt".)
I noticed for the first time that the license plates for the entire fleet of Microsoft shuttles are all of the format '### MSN'. Cute.

I wonder how they pulled that off? Could anybody else in WA get a license plate with MSN as the letter combination, or did Microsoft somehow buy that entire set of 1000 possibilities? I don't think there are quite that many shuttles right now.
Hey, for anyone who has ever been confused about which blog comments are from me and which are -

I always put in my email address and put as my URL when commenting, whether on my blog or anybody elses. Occasionally I'll forget this info when I first click 'Ok', but I'm strangely anal enough that I'll go back right away and edit the comment to add it back in. Any comments without this information are from somebody else.

(You may have had it all figured out already and you're like, "Why the hell is she telling me this?!," but friends have approached me recently claiming great confusion so I thought I'd clarify.)
I think I amplify my feelings a bit when I post late at night. Either that, or I'm just more numb in the mornings -

I feel kind of numb. Except for my back, and the rest of my body, all of which hurts. I don't think I've been sleeping in a bad position, but I certainly haven't been sleeping well; maybe that's getting to me? Two nights in a row I've woken up in the morning and it just hurt to move.
You know when the fabric of your life seems to be unraveling beneath your feet? All your relationships disintegrate or drastically change. You feel as if nothing can last, no relationship can be counted on to stand the test of time. Friends and lovers fade away from your tangible life into simple wisps of memory, and to hold them close even a moment longer is an impossibility.

Maybe you don't know that feeling, but believe me, it sucks.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

For the first time, scientists have created sperm from the embrionic stem cells of mice; so says NPR. That means sperm can now be generated in the laboratory. No more need for men and sex! Crazy.
Stupid nightmares. I am so tired recently - what I wouldn't give to sleep straight through an entire night.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Okay. Whoever you are:

I really think you are crazy. Between the emails, the comments, the multiple monikers, and the conversations with yourself - yes, I do know which ones were you, and that so many were you; I DO check IP addresses - well, it's just beyond me.

I'm not one for censorship, so you are welcome to keep commenting here. This may be the last time I respond to you, though, as engaging you and responding to you only seems agitate the situation.

It has been interesting having you on my blog, and I'm sure I will find future posts from you, if there are any, to be interesting as well, but I will no longer add to your confusion and/or distress by replying. Farewell, mystery commenter.
Fragile as a leaf in autumn
Just fallin' to the ground
without a sound

Spinning, laughing, dancing to
her favorite song
Well, she's a little girl with nothing wrong
and she's all alone
Man, if you haven't been listening to Norah Jones, you might consider it; "come away with me" is one of the best albums I've come across in years.
I also cannot ask Marc to email you, because I do not know Marc. I have never met him. I'm sorry that there are uncomfortable feelings that need to be mended, but I really can't help you; I don't know why you associate me with this person, because I do not know him.
Kathryn, or Elizabeth Kaye, or Anonymous, or whoever you are -

I don't want to hurt your feelings or anything, but I really don't know what you're talking about and why you keep posting to me, or at me, or on my blog but having nothing to do with me.

Who do you think I am?

I am not Marc.

My name is Kathryn. Really, truly. I don't believe I ever met you or spoke with you before you came across my blog. I think you believe I'm someone I'm not, participating in some grand scheme, but I have no knowledge of any scheme. I don't understand your posts and your comments. I'm sorry, but I think you've come to some misguided conclusions about me.

Monday, December 08, 2003

I just woke up from a nightmare just now where some crazy woman was trying to kill me by burning me with hot water. I had been on my way to meet Jaimes, had gotten lost and was running late, and stopped into a restaurant to ask for directions; that's where the woman had been. She started screaming at me, trying to engage me, chasing me. I fled, and accidentally knocked down a waitress on the way out. Something fell off the closest table onto her -- boiling hot water from a teacup directly onto her scalp, I think, and then something large and glass fell onto her head and shattered, the combination of both injured her fatally, but I was just trying to get away from Ms. Nutso and couldn't stop to worry about it or even feel bad. There were cars out on the street, but none of them would stop for me - except for one, with two guys and a dog, who only picked me up after I agreed to give one a blow job in exchange. Crazy woman was right there on my tail, grabbed my leg as I was getting into the car and wouldn't let go even as we were driving away. It hurt, this woman outside pulling at my leg and arm, trying to shut the door, shutting it on my own limbs to try and get away from her. It was raining, and everything was wet and cold and slippery and the door wasn't closing all the way and I was pretty damn scared -

and then I woke up.

I don't know where dreams like that come from.

Saturday, December 06, 2003

You know when you're nostalgic about someone, missing something you once had with them, but they've moved on and want nothing to do with you anymore? I hate that. I mean, I don't want another relationship or anything. I just want, I don't know - a conversation, or something.

Friday, December 05, 2003

Occasionally, I get so tired that after I've driven home, I can't even drag myself inside to go to bed. Instead, I nap in the car. Hours later I wake up freezing, and finally stumble into my apartment and crawl into bed.

Why do I do this?

What is wrong with me?
Some guy in Jersey got pulled over for having an unregistered vehicle, and called a friend to get his car registered online in the time that it took the officer to write a ticket and order a tow. Crazy. He still had to pay the ticket, but the officer couldn't tow his car anymore because it was then registered. I'd never think to do something like that.
Cocaine and Ecstasy Cause DNA Mutation:
..."Cocaine and ecstasy have proved to be more dangerous than we had imagined,'' said Giorgio Bronzetti, chief scientist at the National Center for Research's (CNR) biotechnology department. "These drugs, on top of their toxicological effects, attack DNA provoking mutations and altering the hereditary material. This is very worrying for the effects it could have on future generations,'' he said...
I dated someone in college who tried to convince me a number of times to do Ecstasy with him. I researched the drug and found that I was too uncomfortable with possible side effects to really consider it, so each time I declined. In retrospect, I am glad I made that choice.

I was actually getting along with Mr_X0 for a while, but now he's back to annoying the piss out of me. Trying to get me to do his job, when that's not working, looking over my shoulder at what I'm doing, trying to tell me how to do my job, bitching about everything... ugh.

I feel like I was on a really nice vacation and now I'm back again. And it sucks being back.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

There is a large Christmas tree in the lobby of my building at work. It smells SO good.

I want a Christmas tree.

Apparently, you can rent Christmas trees from Ikea for $9.95 plus a $10 deposit (refunded to you upon return of the tree in the form of a gift certificate). Ikea will then recycle the trees and plant a new tree for every tree that they rented out.

How wacky. I might just check it out.
Have I mentioned that I am doing something different for Christmas this year?

I'm going to fly my mother, father, and youngest sister out to visit with Mary and I. This will be my first Christmas season ever where I don't spend any time in the midwest.

I offered to fly my brother's girlfriend, as well, but she wasn't sure she'd have time enough off of work. I did not get a ticket for my brother because although there is a chance he will be back from Iraq by then, nothing is certain.

My reasons for doing this are two-fold:

First off, Mary is looking for a job. She's afraid that many places looking to hire would mainly be interested in hiring extra help for the holidays, and was afraid that she might end up being unable to head back home. She's much happier now that I'm bringing home to her.

The second reason is a little more selfish. For the last four years, I always spent at least part of the holiday season with Jeremy and his family. I really liked his family and I enjoyed spending time with them once a year, and I also cherished the time with him. We aren't dating any more and haven't been for some time now, but I will still miss the time spent with him over in Wisconsin. I guess I figured that if I shake things up, change around my holiday routine, I won't notice the other changes quite as much and there will be less danger of suffering from a bout of nostalgic holiday blues.

So, Christmas in Seattle! Joy, joy, joy.
"Litter and it will hurt," proclaim a host of freeway signs in the area.

Great. Here's to bullying the public into acting with consideration for their community and environment. That's got to be the best way to motivate.
Have you ever admired someone so much that you built them up in your mind to be larger than life, and then woken up one day to realize that they are just another person? It's not that you don't admire them anymore, but it's like you see them in a whole other light; all of a sudden you're on a level playing ground and you can relate to them like you'd relate to friends, or coworkers, or neighbors, or anyone else real.

It's a weird transition.
Bush Administration Defends Detainee Policy:
...The justices should not even get involved in any review of that power, because there is no constitutional doubt about it, the Justice Department argued in a lengthy legal brief. ...

That's right, we don't need checks and balances. Let's put complete faith in our administration, happy little sheep. Baaaaa is right.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Royd Tolkien, the great-grandson of J.R.R. Tolkien, has a cameo in part III of the LOTR movie series, The Return of the King. Pretty damn cool.
Goodbye, F. A. O. Schwarz. :(
The commute this morning was crazy. My bus was already filled to capacity, standing room only. Then, halfway down the route, they pulled into a stop, made us all get off, and made us get onto a smaller bus so that the one we had been on could go into the shop. People had to smoosh up against each other and cram even into the stairwells on the second bus in order to fit.

Then, when we finally got to my final stop, the next bus on the same route got there at almost the same time. It's supposed to be 15 minutes behind us, but I guess we took a lot of time playing these silly bus-changing games.
Here's what's happening in my local IT industry:

Not only is AT&T cutting 70% of their IT staff, but they are forcing employees to train overseas replacements to do their jobs and they are blocking employee access to all media stories about offshoring.

Woah. Really not cool.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

According to this article, my problem may simply be that I am an introvert trying to live my life as if I were an extrovert and failing miserably:
Extroverts are energized by people, and wilt or fade when alone. They often seem bored by themselves, in both senses of the expression. Leave an extrovert alone for two minutes and he will reach for his cell phone. In contrast, after an hour or two of being socially "on," we introverts need to turn off and recharge. My own formula is roughly two hours alone for every hour of socializing. This isn't antisocial. It isn't a sign of depression. It does not call for medication. For introverts, to be alone with our thoughts is as restorative as sleeping, as nourishing as eating. Our motto: "I'm okay, you're okay—in small doses."
Two hours alone for every hour of socializing? Now that I'm working in this tiny office around my officemate all day, I'm lucky if I get an hour to myself each day. At least I feel like that's the case. I don't know how much time I actually get to spend on my own, between work and friends and family, but it doesn't feel like enough.

Or it's entirely possible that the article is all bunk.
No offense meant to those of you who are my friends, by the way. This is an internal deal, I think. Not a problem with you.

Steve just randomly messaged me:
Steve says: how you doing?
Kathryn says: doing alright
Kathryn says: you?
Steve says: ok... ya know. the grind goes on.
Steve says: Seems like you haven't been feeling too well lately. Just wanted to tell you i was thinking about you. Smile :)
Sweet of him. We haven't spoken or hung out for a while, but he still notices that things are up with me; very nice. I do realize that I am lucky for the friends that I have.
Do you ever go through phases where you just don't want to be around your friends? Where even the people you are closest to grate on your nerves like nails on a blackboard?


I'm going through a super-antisocial phase. Often recently I find I don't want to be around people at all, especially my closest friends. But they expect that I'll spend this time with them and spend that time with them and there are all these commitments that they sign me up for and assume I'll go along with, and I do, so I'm around them all the time, but all the while I feel some craziness simmering inside me where nobody can see. I don't want to go anywhere, do anything, be around anybody, and I'll draw boundaries so that I'm not for a while, but then I always am again and there it is.

I'm not sure what's up with that.

I rarely get a night to myself, and when I do, it's never enough. I don't know how to make it enough. Do I need to just go into hermit-mode for a few days? A week? However long? Or would that only serve to exacerbate the problem?
I fell asleep on the bus again this morning. I'm afraid that one of these days, I won't wake up when the bus gets to my stop.

When my mother was a kid, 5 or 6 years old, she fell asleep on the bus ride home after school. Her older brother thought it would be a funny joke to leave her on the bus. She woke up later on, all alone at the end of the route. Very sad.

Here's to waking up for your bus stop and de-boarding.
I found out yesterday that someone I never thought would read my blog has been reading my blog. It's a strange feeling.

I think I'm glad, sometimes, that I don't know who regularly visits to the site. I'm afraid that if I did, it would mess with my head and I would self-censor my posts with specific people in mind as audience members, and that's really not what I'm shooting for with this journal. I'd like to be as open as possible and write for myself, not for any one specific person among you. I guess that's a mark against figuring out how to log visits.

I'm still not sure I'd like my mom to start reading, though. :)

Saturday, November 29, 2003

I am frustrated with so many things.

Long story short, I'm thinking of just turning off my computer for a few hours, days, weeks - I'm not sure how long. This means I will not be online from home much, if at all.

So -- if I don't respond to your emails in a timely manner, please bear with me. Maybe it's better to contact me by phone for the time being.
ARRRGH- Mozilla is pissing me off.

First off, the interface sucks ass. Yeah, so do the interfaces for most MS programs, but why should I switch over for more suckage?

Second, I set it up to check my mail. When I did so, I very carefully told it to "Leave Messages On Server" because I wasn't sure I wanted to tie myself down to it as a solution.

I guess it forgot.

It, in fact, set a number of options back to their default values without telling me and without me telling it to do so, sometime between Thursday and today.

Now I don't want to use it at all, but finding any other mail program is irrelevant at the moment since STUPID MOZILLA TOTALLY CLEANED OUT MY MAIL ACCOUNT.

I hate Mozilla.

Friday, November 28, 2003

I hate it when you type out a post, click "Post & Publish", and then blogger freaks out about having forgotten who you were and needing you to log in again, losing your post in the process.

Anyhow, happy Day-After-Thanksgiving, everyone.

Thursday, November 27, 2003

My dog has this thing for pooping in front of people who admire him.

When we're walking, if someone stops us to tell us how beautiful a dog he is, it's nearly certain that he'll stop at the very next tree or bush and take a very large, smelly dump.

What's with that?
A rundown of my Thanksgiving so far:
  • 3:45 AM: I wake up, unable to sleep any longer.

  • 3:50 AM - 6:50 AM: I watch "My So Called Life" episodes on DVD, cuddled up with dog.

  • 6:50 AM: Current epsiode of series is about Christmas, family, lost children, homes. As the episode winds to a close, I feel strangely nostalgic. I call my parents. (It's 7:00 AM here, but it's 9:00 AM there and I expect they will be awake. They aren't out of bed yet, but they have been awake for a while.)

    "What are you doing up?" asks my mother. The conversation starts out a little rocky, but as we get into talk more it turns out to be a really good call. I talk to my mother, my father. Eventually my youngest sister wakes up and I talk to her, as well. I have one of the best chats with my father that I've had in years. It's nice.

  • 7:45 AM: I stick Miles' borrowed WinXP CD into the drive and start running the Windows Recovery Console. Eventually I get to a prompt where I start a CHKDSK /r up. It seems as if it will run forever.

  • 8:00 AM: I have a lovely Thanksgiving breakfast of cheese and wine. Thank you, Alex Phelps, for the lovely New Zealand wine. Thank you, Mike Bell, for the cheese.

    CHKDSK is still running.

  • 8:30 AM: CHKDSK is still running.

  • 8:47 AM: CHKDSK tells me that I have "one or more unrecoverable errors". Great. I boot up linux, and here I am. I'm customizing my account a bit more, and it starts feeling a little more comfortable. Yay linux. Or something.

  • 9:15 AM: I put on the extended version of the Lord of the Rings Part I. Go Tolkein.

  • 10:30 AM: My aunt was sick yesterday, so Mary and I were under the impression that all Thanksgiving plans were off and we were left to our own devices. But now my aunt calls and tells me that she's feeling better, and Thanksgiving is back on! Yay, Thanksgiving.

  • 10:32 AM: At the same time I am talking to my aunt, Mary calls. We touch base and both she and my aunt decide to shower, at which point Mary and I will meet up and we'll call the aunt again.

  • 11:00 AM: Mary is done showering and starts walking to my place, and Louie and I start walking to meet her halfway.

  • 11:12 AM: Here we are, about to "start the day". Yay holidays!

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Do you ever feel abandoned by your friends, for no good reason, really? I hate when I get to feeling like that.
I got to have an MMR vaccine today. Ouch. Those things are distinctly unpleasant.

I also get to have a heart ultrasound done sometime soon! That sounds exciting, ne? I've had a small heart murmur at least since I was a teenager. Odds are that it is completely benign, but since I've never had it looked at closely my doctor thought it might be a good idea to do so now.

Exciting times.
And OH MY GOSH - some suppliers are ACTUALLY relabeling components. These terms have been industry standards for decades. Politically Correct Craziness gone overboard.
Los Angeles officials have asked that manufacturers, suppliers and contractors stop using the terms "master" and "slave" on computer equipment, saying such terms are unacceptable and offensive. Jeesh. Don't people have anything better to do with their time?
Do you have a living will?

Do you ever think about what you would want to have done for you under certain medical circumstances?

I don't know what I'd want. Difficult stuff to even think about.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

By the way, for those of you who do know me and may have been wondering:

I am still female. I have never gone by "Marc". There is nothing going on that I'm not telling you about; I really don't know what's up with all of that.
I'm feeling... irritable with work lately. Irritated especially by the people I work for, but some by my co-workers, some by the cruddy products I work on, some by the lack of process here, etc, etc...

It's not unmanageable. I'm still pretty happy, for the most part.

But with unhappiness, with dissatisfaction, eventually you cross a line wherein it becomes better to move on to better things, where staying on is an exercise in frustration and is no longer the best or smartest course to take. Traditionally, I have stayed on long, long after I have crossed this line. I want not to do that anymore.

How do I not do that?

How do I know when I have crossed over?
The dance last night held several surprises for me.

  • I seem to like Brenda's DJing less these days. Last night, I acually preferred Kirk's sets to Brenda's. He played some good stuff.

  • I had a few awesome dances last night. I also had some crappy-ass dances. Usually, any given night seems to go one way or the other, but last night my dancing was all over the wall. I don't think I have ever before had such good dances AND such bad dances side by side.

  • I got to the dance at the very start. Hardly anyone was there yet. That's just not something I do.

  • I left fairly early, when the dance was just picking up. I was probably one of the first people to leave, but I didn't mind; it was time for me to go. That's not something I do, ever -- if I leave early, I always wonder what I might be missing out on. What fun might they have without me? I always close things out. Except last night, when I didn't.
When Linux becomes my primary operating system, I feel somewhat as if I've been permanently blinded and left to fend for myself in a stranger's house.

Monday, November 24, 2003

Mad crazy commenting going on around here lately! It's like several little mini-blogs hidden inside this blog. Crazy crazy crazy. Glad y'all are having fun, though.
So this weekend, the hard drive on my home PC that contains all my windows partitions stopped working.

I guess I'll have to brush up on linux a bit until I figure out what's up with that drive. I'll also have to find a decent linux pop-mailer. Anyhow, you might not see me IM from home much for a while, and I might be slow with personal email while I figure out whatever it is I'm doing. Please bear with me.
Last month, Microsoft fired a contract employee over a personal blog entry. I guess I should maybe watch what I say on here more than I have been.

Fortunately, for those of us still employed, Blogger has a FAQ entry on How Not To Get Fired Because Of Your Blog. Ha. It's a funny world we live in.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

Mr_X0 just talked at me for an hour and 10 minutes. He expounded on all his views about the government, employment, outsourcing, social security, the European Union, the impending collapse of our country and economy due to our allowing corporations to run wild and walk all over employees...

I say "talked at" because I could hardly get a word in edgewise.

I didn't get any work done, but it's been pretty slow this week and I could afford the time without a problem. It was actually entertaining, I guess. I find the guy more and more tollerable as time passes on. The whole work-being-pretty-easy-and-non-stressfull-these-days thing helps, I'm sure.
I have a heckler. They wrote the following comment in response to some obscure post from a while back:

it is hard to move on, even when somebody makes you upset by not taking into account how other people feel. Like you yourself said, you shouldn't do things that people will probably take issue with. You do something without considering that other people might get upset, then you blame the person when they do get upset.

All this time, I thought you meant me! What else would I have thought? It was the time frame we knew each other in. But when you have pix of another friend with the same name (I really thought you meant me - you sent me the link several months ago) then someone will get upset. And you blamed me for the break up of you know what. U have to learn to be discreet. Everybody needs to feel special. The site is publically searchable via google and yahoo very easily. This is not a VPN.
Alright, whoever you are:

I do not know who you are. I have my doubts that you even know me. "All this time, I thought you meant me"? I don't know what you're talking about.

I am aware that this site is searchable, and I am fine with that. Everyone that I really know well and care about is aware of this blog and has been given the choice to read it or not. Not all of them do, but they have the choice.

I have also purposefully included identifying information with many of my posts so that people who have known me might be able to find me, should they take an inkling to do so. This was intentional.


Anyway, carry on.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

From Monday's edition of the Seattle Times in an article entitled Tribes becoming political players with casino cash:
. . .Hoglund said he supports legislation to ease gambling rules off reservations because he believes tribes have got too much money and, as a result, too much power in state politics.

"It's going to play a very important and severe impact on politics in our state," he said. "Money will bring influence and ... sadly, politics has been sort of a big-money game."
That's great. I mean, if it's a big-money game, we might as well leave it in the hands of those who have always had money, and make sure nobody else can ever get enough to be a contender.


Really, I think it's great that some minority groups are finally building up clout enough to play the whole "big money politics game". I'd like to see more minority and special interest groups able to step up the plate. Even more so, I'd like to see it become less of a "big money" game, but I don't realistically see that happening any time soon.
Today on the bus, some guy sitting across from me was reading email or text messages or something on his phone. At one point, he read something and his face just lit up. He looked so happy, and it made me happy. I don't think he was even aware that his emotions were showing, but it touched me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

I was walking home just now and some old asian guy driving an SUV almost ran me over. He was making a left turn. I was crossing in the crosswalk of the street he was turning onto -- I had the right of way -- and he only avoided hitting me because I threw myself forward and out of his path. His stupid SUV grazed my backpack as he flew by and I don't think he saw me even then.

Yes, it was dark and rainy, but jeesh, that's no excuse. PAY ATTENTION WHEN YOU ARE DRIVING.
Why do I sleep so much lately? I got 12 hours of sleep last night, 8 hours the night before, and 10-11 hours the night before that. I love sleep, but man... there's so much less time in the day when you sleep so much. I meant to go dancing last night but oops!, I was asleep.

Monday, November 17, 2003

Got my vitals taken this morning as part of a study I'm participating in. Blood pressure, as always, is low: 112/68. Weight at 135 lbs is within a healthy range, but it's skimming the top of that range and I could probably stand to drop about 5 lbs. I should maybe go a little easier on the Thai curries, much as I love them. Not pregnant, although that is no surprise as it is difficult to get with child outside of sexual intercourse or purposeful artificial insemination.

Next week I have a full-blown physical exam scheduled. Joy! I've been a little lax lately and this will be the first in two or three years. There shouldn't be any surprises there, but we'll see.
My life is not my own. I feel that way sometimes, anyhow.

Yesterday, after ultimate, my team went out for drinks. I couldn't go because I had people at home waiting for me. I am rarely able to do spur-of-the-moment things like that because there's nearly always someone waiting for my time. Four or five times this season my team went out after the game, and I wasn't able to go with them any one of those times.

I'm hardly ever bored. It's a night far and few between that I have no plans, nobody expecting anything of me, no time already slotted awayy. There's always someone expecting me or something that needs doing, constantly go go go.

I remember reading a summary of some book a while back that claimed that urban dwellers today have built up new "family" structures. Rather than the typical mother-father-children construct that we've been brought up with, these urbanites compose family units made up of friends and peers who provide the same sort of close network and support that traditional families used to provide.

I think I fit into that sort of construct these days. I'm far away from most of my family, but I have "family" all around me. And in some ways, this family is more demanding of me than my biological family ever was. They expect time, support, whatnot from me, and to give them anything less than that would be letting them down.

I don't know how to keep time enough for me in all this. I feel drained more often than I would like.

Today, for a change, I shooed everyone off for a few hours, and took a little bit of time for myself. It was nice.

To my "family" out there reading this, by the way, this is not to say that I don't love you and that I don't value your time. I do. Tremendously. You make my life something more than it is on its own, and you add great value. I'm still struggling, though, to find a balance wherein I maintain a healthy individuality.

Sunday, November 16, 2003

Wow, there's another Kathryn who has been reading and commenting on my blog like mad. Cool beans.

Saturday, November 15, 2003

I took yesterday off work. Nice, very nice.

And I cleaned my apartment! My bathroom feels like it belongs to someone else, it is so clean and sanitary. And the rest of my pad isn't quite there, but almost... feels good. Homey. I like being here.

And now my friend Alex from highschool is visiting for the weekend. Kickass.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

I am trying to hold myself to a policy of no self-indulgence while I get over this stupid cold. I won't medicate myself (with the exception of consuming lots of tea and chicken soup), I'll go to work, and will do all the things I normally do. I'll act as if I am well and will then be well.

Only, at work today, I was feeling so poorly that I had to leave early. Then tonight I tried to go to an SSC board meeting and to my Tango class, only in Tango I got really lightheaded and almost passed out and at the board meeting I was felt overly feverish and had a really hard time concentrating.

I hate being sick.
The Fable

Once upon a time there lived a girl. She slept in a lovely little cottage made of gingerbread and candy; she was always asleep. One morning she woke up and the candy had mold on it. Her father blew her a kiss and the house fell down. She realized she was lost. She found herself walking down a crowded street, but the people were made of paper, like paper dolls. She blew everyone a kiss goodbye and watched as they blew away.

haiku for him

he peels off my clothes
like a starving man would peel an orange
his lips taste my juicy sweetness
my legs tangle with his
we become
one being
a burning furnace
in the cold cement basement of love

- Submissions for "The Lit" on My so-called Life, Episode 06: The Substitute.
HAHAH HAHAH!-ahHA ha hah ah ahg heahahaHAHAha. ha. ha.

Check it out: the software process in actuality.
Where do snot and mucus come from? Why is there all of a sudden so much more when one is sick?

And when you get all stuffed up, why is one nostril invariably more stuffed up than the other? Isn't there ample snot to go around?
and I have the sense to recognize that
I don't know how to let you go
every moment marked
with apparitions of your soul
I'm ever swiftly moving
trying to escape this desire
the yearning to be near you
I do what I have to do
the yearning to be near you
I do what I have to do
but I have the sense to recognize

that I don't know how
to let you go
I don't know how
to let you go

(excerpt from Sarah McLachlan's Do What You Have To Do)
I almost never have insomnia problems. If anything, I have trouble keeping awake, not sleeping too much -- I'd happily sleep 12-16 hours/night if I could.

I really don't envy those of you who struggle with insomnia on a daily basis. It sucks. Almost as bad as this stupid ass cold, but nothing could suck quite that bad. Except a hoover. Or maybe a turbine, or a funnel-shaped vortex.
Woke up,
couldn't sleep
stupid cold
plugged up nose
lack of air
lack of breathing
so here I am
drinking menthol-laden tea
writing this.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

I have never in my life done a pullup. Well, not a real one. I could do the ones at the gym on the machine that compensates for a large part of my body weight, so I wasn't really doing pullups; I was doing pull-a-percentage-of-my-weight-ups.

How do you ever do the first real one, anyway? I can't do them because I don't have the strength, but I never build up my strength because I can't do even one. I don't have access to the gym anymore to use their cheater-machine to build my strength up.


I was so proud of myself; I hadn't been sick all winter up until now. That may not sound like much, but I have the worst immune system in the world. Well, pretty bad, at least. I had chicken pox three times before my body caught on and finally built an immunity.

Anyhow, so much for that run; I've got a nasty cold. I feel like someone hit me in the head with a hammer, funneled two or three pounds of luke-warm water in through my ears so that it would swish around in my head all day, stomped on my chest so that I can't breathe quite right, and then plugged up my nose just for fun. I hate being sick.

Monday, November 10, 2003

----- Original Message -----
From: "august.krueger"
Cc: "Nelton, Amber"
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2003 11:42 AM
Subject: [Hulsizer] Leroy

I just had a quick conversation with Leroy. He says his unit has been moving south. They are no longer in Iraq. His unit is preparing to load their equipment on ships. If everything works out well, they will finish that up in three weeks and fly back to Fort McCoy for three weeks. If there are no hitches, he will be back by Christmas. So, what what are the chances that everything will work according to plan?

I was in a good mood last night. I'm in a good mood this morning. I've been unusually pleasant towards Mr_X0, and he's actually been fairly pleasant in return. I think maybe we're discovering new, more effective means of interracting with each other -- things probably wouldn't be working out like this, except that I'm flying so high that nothing can phase me and the good feelings seem somewhat contagious. Good stuff, Maynard.
I can't access The New York Times Online from work today. Bugger.
I had one of my best dance nights ever last night; I was so happy. Really hit a groove, was moving better than usual and was really aware of both my body and my partners' bodies. It felt so good.

And I got to dance with Jason Christodoulou - twice! So sweet.

Sunday, November 09, 2003

I didn't used to get much spam; maybe 1 or 2 spam mails / month. Then, a week or so ago, I started getting 5-10 spam messages / day.

Coincidentally, I signed up for an ebay account just a week or so ago.


I think not. Ebay gave out my address! Poo on ebay.

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Our ultimate opponent today forfeited, so we "won" without having to actually show up. Crazy.

It's just as well though, I guess. It's been a long day and I can use the extra downtime.

Friday, November 07, 2003

Damn traffic.

It's gotten worse over time, not better. What's up with that?

I'm so selfish I'm going to make Alex and Mary drive over to the East Side to hang out with me now, because traffic isn't bad COMING here, just leaving.
Yes, I am still at work. I took a look at traffic and decided I'd be better off sticking around and playing an online game with Mary while I waited for it to clear up a bit.

Woah. Check out The Meatrix. Somebody had way too much time on their hands.
The weekend will be busy too. I have a dance workshop that spans tonight, Saturday day, and Sunday day. Then on Saturday and Sunday evenings, I'll be busy rushing around for my ultimate team's playoffs. After that are the night time dances. In whatever freetime remains, I want to work on getting my apartment cleaned up for Alex Phelp's visit next weekend. Crazy crazy busy busy bee, buzz buzz buzz.
Busy day at work today; not much time for blogging. I'm about to head home, though -- happy, happy.

A friend wrote me email last night saying that he wonders at the way I disappear when I'm not feeling 100 percent. I wonder when I picked up that habit, and whether it was the result of Jeremy rubbing off on me? I remember back in the day, getting unbearably upset about his taking space and needing downtime. Now I'm quite liberal about taking that sort of space for myself.

Thursday, November 06, 2003

I had a bad day yesterday afternoon. It was as if my body and soul filled up with negativity so that nothing else could fit in. Everything was getting to me; work, people, the world in general. I dealt very poorly with several friends, snapping at them, getting extensively irritated, and ultimately cutting the conversations short. I felt loathing for anything, everything, and didn't want to deal with anybody or anything. It was all-consuming.

I don't like when I get that way. It's scary. It hadn't happened for a long time before that, and I hope it doesn't happen again for a long while yet to come.

Today, happily, is a much better day; I'm in good spirits. Even last night, sometime during the dances, I started feeling better. I think the adrenaline was good for me.

Here's to good health and good will.

Ed was on my bus today. Somehow we got to chatting about the US vs. England, Lithuania, and much of Europe, especially as pertains to homelessness, social programs, health care, etc. It left me feeling sad about the state of our country. As Ed put it, "It's great to live here if you are young and can work, but otherwise, you'd probably be better off somewhere else."

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

Only the Good Die Young was playing on the radio on the way home tonight.

I remember the first time I really listened to the lyrics of that song, back in early high school -- I was scandalized. For any of you who aren't familiar with the song, it's a series of lines directed at a young Catholic girl attempting to convince her to give up her virginity, to the point of insinuating that she'll die young if she is too much of a prude. "Woah woah woah, come out, come on, Virginia don't let me wait -- you Catholic girls start much too late. But sooner or later it comes down to fate; I might as well be the one. You know that only the good die young." I couldn't believe that something so nefarious would run main-stream, and worse, that my beloved Billy Joel might be responsible.

My, how times change. The song seems almost tame to me now.
I just took The Hell Test. Here is a list of possible scores:
  • 0-20: A life with the church is too corrupt for you.

  • 21-40: You barely make our scale.

  • 41-60: Approaching normal, you aren't much fun on a date.

  • 61-100: Normal, you use your right hand like everyone else.

  • 101-130: Above average, you've got a few tricks below the belt.

  • 131-160: You're enjoying life to the max.

  • 161-200: You're a danger to society. Who let you out on a day pass?

  • 200+: You're going straight to hell.
With a score of 148, I am having a jolly time here on earth. What's your score?
It's 4:00 pm and I'm going home for the day. Kick-ass!
I just finished up some stuff that's been pretty hot at work for the last few weeks. Now, all of a sudden, there's nothing really important left to do. I'm not behind on anything. I can do background maintenance on my servers, prepare for upcoming bugs and such, but - there won't be any focus on me for a while now. Feels strange. On the bright side, work should be zero stress for all of the conceivable near future.
My boss at Company_A wrote me an email yesterday asking me to call her, so that she could "discreetly inquire" whether or not my officemate came to work yesterday and report results to his Company_A boss. That company is so messed up.

Monday, November 03, 2003

It's hard to work when you've had your eyes dilated.
Today on KUOW's The Conversation: Infidelity.

. . .are we talking about the same thing when we talk about infidelity? The boundaries can vary from relationship to relationship. Do our attitudes about infidelity change over time? Is there a degree of physical intimacy that stops short of infidelity? Is there such a thing as emotional infidelity? If you have a relationship outside your marriage or partnership where you share everything about your inner life, are you betraying your spouse or partner?
I caught a bit of this show on my way back to work after an eye exam today. Interesting topic; it feels very personally relevant. I'm going to have to listen to the entire show once they post the archive online.
I dreampt last night that my Jeremy passed away. I'm not quite sure what the dream meant. Perhaps my subconscious was trying to tell me that he is no longer a part of the life that I live now, and I need to finish moving on and letting him go? I don't know. I felt sad in the dream, though.
It is so cold here lately, and not even the consolation of snow to make it all worthwhile!

Saturday, November 01, 2003

I just gave my dog his first bath in over a year. Boy, did he need it. From the way he shivered and cowered the whole time, though, you woulda thought the world was coming to an end.

It was better than the last bath though. Last time, I had to physically hold him in the tub to keep him from bolting. It was a showdown between he and myself, and we both lost out -- I think it was one of the most tramautic experiences we have ever shared. He was so upset and unhappy that he wouldn't eat BACON that Jon had made for him. Freshly made, human-grade bacon.

Anyhow, this time was better. Not great, but better, and he smells much less offensive now than he did before.

Friday, October 31, 2003

Crazy patent stuff going on lately.
I have a had a number of dreams over the last few months set in an apartment that, in the dreams, is "my" apartment. Only it's not the apartment I live in right now. It is always the same in the dreams; a bottom corner unit in the lower level of a small building, perhaps just a house. Large and roomy. A beautiful living room, kitchen, bedroom, and then a screened in patio area, as well. The floor of the patio sits just a step or two lower than the floor in the rest of the unit. There is some intricate laticework in that room that I love looking at and touching.

The unit doesn't correspond to any place I've ever lived. I can't even remember ever having visited a place similar to it. But I dream it again and again.

I don't know why I dream things like that.

Last night, Louie was in my dream. And so was a puppy; his puppy, just a few months old. He was playing with it, romping around, having a great time. They were so cute together. The puppy looked very similar, but would grow to be a bit bigger than Louie, with less peach coloring, as the mother was a full blood Pyranees. I felt so happy to have both he and the pup, knowing that even after he passed on I would still have dogs around that carried on his line.

But Louie is fixed. He will never father any puppies.

Louie is such an awesome dog. I will have a hard time letting him go, whenever he does pass on, so I can understand at least that portion of the dream.