sienamystic: (Joan)
Went to the 4 hour driver's ed class (after getting a ticket for rolling through a stop sign) and honestly, it wasn't nearly as bad as I had expected. The instructor was engaging, and people participated enough so that things didn't stagnate. The class was about evenly split between older ladies and younger kids (I was one of only a couple who could be described as middle-aged). Towards the end, the group of older ladies got a little chatty and clueless, and the young dude behind me was getting increasingly more irritated with them, but thankfully the class ended soon thereafter and I didn't have to turn around and try to set him on fire with the power of my mind.

We also saw several long PSAs that were all dealing with texting and cell phone usage while driving. They were pretty effective. I can only imagine how horrible it would be to know, as in the case of one of the stories, that your sister lost control of her car and hit a bridge while trying to read your text that said, simply, "Yeah." I don't text or use my cell phone while I'm driving, but I do fuss with my ipod sometimes, and I think that's a habit I need to break.

There was also a young woman in class who valiantly tried to argue that the cop giving her a speeding ticket meant that child abusers and murderers were running free, but that got pretty briskly dealt with.

I've been helping with the kids classes at the dojo on Saturday morning. It's amazing how flexible and energetic the little boogers are. And how differently they learn. There's a redheaded little boy who doesn't have a lot of body coordination yet, but he's really intense about getting things right, and he screws up his face and silently watches everything like a hawk.

Have been rereading Heyers. Need to reread my Yuletide source material. Am a little intimidated because my assignment seems to want, essentially, original fiction, and I don't quite know in which direction to go.
sienamystic: (Betty)
So in the student union, there's a set of stairs down to the lower level shops. It's a giant half-circle, and for whatever reason, it's always been awkward for me to walk down - the shape means that the stairs are not uniform, and generally I clutch the handrail and, you know, feel elderly. Well, given that today I totally bought it and fell down the stairs, I think that elderly feeling is the better option. I fell on my butt, and have a beautiful bruise that, according to my husband, looks like someone punched me in the ass, plus a sore ankle. Feh, bah, and oy. I'd almost be happy if I could blame the vertigo, but I wasn't actually experiencing any (it's come and gone, and hasn't been terribly bad) but as far as I can tell, I just had slightly wet shoes and apparently slipped. I've noticed a vague linkage between being klutzy about two weeks out from my period, so we'll see if that's the case this time.

In other news, my sister has been scanning slides, so here's a photo of me from many moons ago.

Scan10020
sienamystic: (Ryden queen)
Bemo's father is in the hospital, about to go into heart surgery tomorrow or Monday. Any good thoughts in his direction would be appreciated. Bemo holding together ok but obviously apprehensive.

Play-reading group read Tom Stoppard's Arcadia yesterday, and I really, really liked it. Perhaps even better than Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead. Actually, scratch that, I definitely loved it more than R&G. It just really worked for me, and I want to see it performed.

Trying to put together my lecture for Monday, but things keep conspiring to stop me. Will have to bust my butt tomorrow.

Thanks to the air show in town today, there have been Blue Angels flying over fairly frequently. I wish I could go see them, but I didn't want to fight the crowds for the air show. I've seen the Thunderbirds before, but I don't think I've ever seen the Blue Angels.

Squash casserole in the oven; it smells delicious. Squash, sour cream, cracker crumbs, cheddar cheese, garlic salt, a little onion (just for flavor).

Had a crochety old lady moment today. Unfastening my bike from in front of a downtown coffeehouse, a very young (high school? College?) dude walking past hollered at me a couple of times in some sort of cheerleading way, and then stood in front of me with hand outstretched to receive a high-five. I was not dressed in any team gear and was plugged into my earbuds, and it took me a second to figure out what the hell he wanted. After a moment, I just said, in my best who-the-hell-are-you-and-why-do-you-speak-to-me tones, "Go away." He left, complaining about my lack of spirit, or something. I pedaled off, bemused.

pre-flight

Aug. 4th, 2011 09:22 am
sienamystic: (Betty)
As in, I am about to flee.

Hahaha! No, not really. Please ignore the nervous tic next to my right eye!

So I'm kind of a big stressball right now, and my mom's wedding plans are of course playing their part - although it's not the wedding that I'm focused on right now, but getting to it, because ticket prices rose in the couple of days between me quoting prices to her and she sending me money, and now. So I'm about two hundred dollars shy and not sure I can cover it, so unless we want to drive to Kansas City (about three hours away) for the cheaper fares, which may not make any sense at all given gas prices, I'm not sure how to handle this.

Plus work has been a bit of a chainsaw juggling act, and I've been feeling incompetent and lazy and stupid and all that good stuff.

Oh, and there's the chance I will be zipping off to Switzerland the day after I teach my first class, which is cool, except, three-day trip to Switzerland and do I know where my passport is? And, oh, yeah...fatigue. There's that, too. Teaching my second class while loopy with jetlag should be exciting! The students will be exposed to my international savoir faire, which will surely benefit them. Looks like the timing may be wrong on this for other reasons. I am mildly disappointed, but honestly, it would have been exhausting.

I hate the fact that 90% of my recent entries have involved my "flailing" tag. I need to do a couple of nice, peaceful book reviews or flailing about Leverage or something.

brainjuice

Jun. 16th, 2011 06:24 pm
sienamystic: (Joan)
Frantic running around at work. Learning my way around my new little iPod Touch, hereby dubbed "Sherman." Instagrams addictive but am trying not to flood the world with more mediocre faux-aged images. Trying to take steps to curb my overspending at the grocery store. First kickboxing class left me drenched in sweat like I had stepped into the shower fully clothed, but survived and did ok and will be back. Watching "So You Think You Can Dance" with great glee. Frayed around the edges a trifle, but holding up with the help of surprise "A Christmas Story"-branded fudge at work and teeny peanut butter cups from Trader Joe's at home. There are worse ways of coping, I suppose. Although the fudge is weird, no question.

Castle

May. 16th, 2011 10:39 pm
sienamystic: (Catherine heart)
Despite getting spoiled accidentally about ten minutes before it started to air, it still whumped me. Holy shit, show. That was pretty incredible.
sienamystic: (Festina Lente)
Got an email from the personal trainer company acknowledging that I will no longer be auto-renewing from month to month - April should be my last bill from them. "Hold onto that email just in case," advised Bemo, and so I shall, just in case. Have also just signed up for the rec center as planned, and will use the pool facilities there (and maybe other stuff - to be determined.)

Am currently feeling bored and frustrated with my workouts, like I'm simultaneously trying too hard and not trying hard enough and it's not interesting anyway. I'd like more stuff like aikido, where I work and get sweaty and move around without it being exercise. I'm contemplating karate or kickboxing or some of the classes at the rec center, but it's all more money. What I really need to do is get my diet back under control. I've gained a few pounds instead of losing them - it's not crazy yet, but I'm concerned and my food intake is really what it's all about. The problem is that I get frustrated and end up going back to that old comforter, food. I've been doing a lot of staring in the mirror thinking how bland and potato-like I look. I've been invisible for most of my life, but suddenly it hurts a little bit and I'm trying to push against it, probably to no avail.

In other, less navel-gazing news, I spotted a flyer hanging on my co-op's giant community billboard. Apparently my town has a convention - I had no idea! It's called Constellation, it's very inexpensive to attend, it's coming up in a few weeks (April 15-17) and it looks like a fun con where I could dip my toe in the water. (I'm assuming it'll be more colorful than, say, AAM, although likely with fewer fruit bats.) And [livejournal.com profile] jimhines is guest of honor, so I could perhaps say hi to him and tell him in person how much I appreciate his LJ. Has anyone else been? (I'm guessing not...I think it just launched last year?) Is anyone else out there planning on going?
sienamystic: (This is art)
Taxes done, forms sent off to hopefully correct an error from last year's taxes, forms sent off to student loan people to hopefully get some easement in that area. Still feel like I'm drowning in bills and paperwork, but at least I'm not quite up to my nose yet.

Cats at the vet - looks like Kit's bite is easy to treat and will just take me pilling her for a bit, which sucks because she's a strong, wily cat, but I can get it done. If Ratchet continues to try and bully her, I'm going to make a very attractive pair of earmuffs out of him. I think part of the problem is that we're in a smaller place now, and they feel like they can't stake out their own territories, or maybe they're getting a bit bored. Yesterday I made sure the front door to the apartment was shut and let Ratchet run up and down the stairs and stare out the big front window. If he could fit in the harness I bought ages ago on a whim, I'd take him out for a walk, but he's the size of a small (tubby) dog and I'd have to invest about forty bucks in a bigger harness and leash for him. At least he made himself very happy marking the corners of the hallway with his face.

Bemo's ECT still continues, with them expressing happiness that he's doing better and talking about starting to taper him down to twice, then once a week. This irritates me because it was presented as something different - a course of 8-12 sessions (we're on 15 now) which would be able to be stopped without any drawbacks. Except now I'm being told that you do taper them off, and that if you just stop sometimes the patient regresses and you have to start all over again. This is not information I was given to start with. I'm not sure if it would have changed anything had I known, but I'm still disgruntled about it. Also, Dr. ECT (she of the irritating hairstyle and stiletto boots) wants to change his meds, except he won't see her once he's done with the ECT, and I'm not going to change things on her say-so, psychiatrist or no. Bemo will tell his meds person about the changes Dr. ECT is suggesting, and get the two of them to talk...but I hope Dr. ECT doesn't bully the meds nurse into changing things when there's no need for it. Except there may be a need, because while he's getting better, he's not exactly Mr. Bright and Cheerful. (His sense of humor has come back some, and the crying fits have lessened but not disappeared, but he still has a lot of anhedonia and is now worrying about what will happen if the disability doesn't come through, if he'll ever be able to work again, who would ever hire him and could he even do a job again...) So who the hell knows...certainly not me.

Also, I'm not thrilled to have to continue to take big chunks of time out of my day for this - it's about three hours, two of which I take as sick leave, and while I'm feeling very grateful for a job that lets me do it, it obviously can't continue for too much longer.

And on that note, off to see some people about a sculpture move.
sienamystic: (Annie from Community)
A great day until about five minutes ago, when I discovered that Kit has what looks like a bite wound on her flank. Have called the vet to try and get her in tomorrow after cleaning it and dumping a wad of antibiotic cream on it. She's in good spirits and eating (I never would have known she had an issue if I hadn't felt it on her), so I think we're ok waiting because I can't afford to go the emergency vet route. Hell, even as cheap as the vets are around here, we're going to have to dip into savings to get her taken care of. Or the credit card. Oy.

Likely culprit is Ratchet, who feuds with Kit at every available opportunity. But this is the first time it's come to anything this serious - mostly it's just a lot of yelling and then one of us squirts Ratchet with the water bottle and he goes and sulks under the bed for a while.

Yeesh.
sienamystic: (This is art)
I'm in the middle of yet another one of my periodic and ultimately-doomed-to-failure experiments with makeup, and once again I'm kind of baffled by the whole thing.

I didn't grow up learning how to use it, which is weird because my mom wears it and has opinions about it, but it never really became part of my girl culture. I made a few attempts here and there to use eyeshadow, which is what seemed to be the big important thing, but the whole concept of foundation and powder, of how to apply mascara or eyeliner...those things really escape me.

For some reason, I keep trying. Right now, I think it's rooted in a sort of comfort-thing, mixed with perhaps a little bit of feeling unattractive and wanting something to magically repair that. I am smack-dab in the center of "I feel young but I am so old! I have missed out on my days of carefree sex and male attention! It's only one step from here to the grave!" Clearly, makeup will resolve all of this for me.

I picked up a few things at Target - not the really good stuff because that's expensive and I feel like I shouldn't put money I don't have into something I will most likely abandon quickly - but foundation and powder and a small blush. I have a nice neutral eyeshadow that is probably too old to be used but I'm using it anyway, and some pale pearly pink lipstick that I like (along with a few others that I don't like as much). I'm avoiding mascara and eyeliner because my eyes are always doing something...watering or itching or whatever, probably because of allergies but also because I can be weird and twitchy. The foundation and powder is a little bit too pale, but it's doable. That's another thing with makeup that baffles me - how the heck does anybody figure out what color foundation matches them? I stand with my arm up against the sample palette of colors, completely confused about which one is the right one. And then obviously I'd get a little more tan in the summer, so I'd have to go buy another color, right? Otherwise I'll be Ghostface McTanarms. And the results are that the undereye dark circles are a little more concealed, and the pale red blotchy areas on my forehead are covered, but I don't know if I look better. Different, maybe. More polished? Not sure. Probably. Maybe?

The other problem I have is that it all has a fragrance to it, and usually one that I don't like. My lipstick is pretty, but it tastes horrible, and it gets on the lip of the soda can so I'm swigging Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry Now With Added Lipstick Flavor.

I wonder how long the experiment will last this time. I'd love it if I could come away with a really simple routine that polished me up a bit but didn't require so much mental energy or which gave me good, consistent results. But I think I'd have to invest a lot more time thinking about it and practicing with various things and buying a bunch more stuff. And if it happens like it usually does, it'll all get stuffed into my Hula Girl makeup pouch, or my big pink basket that sits on top of my chest of drawers, to be resurrected in another year or five when I get the urge to put stuff on my face again.

gnnrgh

Mar. 5th, 2011 06:34 pm
sienamystic: (jello horror)
The computer repair is going to cost us $349 bucks. That includes a new hard drive, and the data transfer, etc. Theoretically we could buy the equipment and Bemo could do it, but it would be a big project and, as Bemo ruefully put it, full of opportunities to do something wrong and erase everything, since he's never done it before.

I think we can do it, but once again, we'll be just barely scraping through the month.

Oh, and last night I lost one of my earrings in a parking garage and couldn't for the life of me find it on the ground. It's a pair I've had since I was about six - tiny circles of gold with a Chinese character inside. They're lovely and I am not allowing myself to feel as upset about the loss as I should be.

Are we due for a string of awesome things happening yet?
sienamystic: (TAR Colin)
I would really like to be able to change my LJ's playlist away from Woebegone: Greatest Hits of Woe and Tragedy and Yet More Woe, but damn. When I started to do our taxes on Saturday afternoon, I came across a W-2 from last year that I did not remember seeing. And I knew immediately that it meant trouble, I just didn't know how or when or in what form the trouble would come. Cue my opening our mailbox this morning to discover a perfectly polite notice from the IRS going, "You screwed up, you owe us money, have a nice day!" From Saturday to Monday - not a long time to have to wait for the shoe to drop.

If I hadn't had the warning on Saturday that something was in the wind, I would really been upset. Had kittens. Hit the ceiling. Had a cow, totally, dude. As it was, I saw the envelope, sighed heavily, and went to sit in the car to read it over and when I was done, I sighed again, put it in my purse, and drove back to work.

So tonight, I get to review our paperwork, and see if I did really botch things the way it looks like I did, and then figure out where we go from here. It's five hundred bucks. We didn't actually see a penny of our refund last year, since Bemo's student loans were still in default and they took it, but maybe we can work something out where if we're due a refund this year, they can take the money that way. Not sure. Am already tired just thinking about it.

Meanwhile, I feel like I have once again failed completely at this "adult" shit. And yet, I'm the one who continues to have to handle it. I'm feeling a bit resentful about that, and about the fact that if Bemo is too depressed/unmotivated/purely physically tired to go to the gym, I feel like I should stay home as well, since I'm already away a great deal what with working on the weekends. But it's gotten to the point where I need to either start insisting, or going without him, or something, because my activity at home when I'm not at the gym is cooking and baking, which is not the best thing to replace a trip to the gym with. In some ways, Bemo is doing better. But he's in a much deeper hole this time than I've ever experienced, so, you know, better is still pretty deep in that hole.

Anyway. The IRS and I continue to dance our dance of incompetence and finance. Feh to all of it.

Meep!

Feb. 23rd, 2011 05:00 pm
sienamystic: (jello horror)
Have just had the potential opportunity to teach a class at a small nearby college come my way. They need somebody to teach a pre-Renaissance Art History class next fall, and remembered that when they came to visit my museum, one of us had an MA in Art History. (My boss has a masters in Museum Studies, although she could probably teach the class as well, although she would prefer a class covering modern-to-contemporary Art History.)

The class is supposed to cover European (got it), Islamic (shakier but I could get the highlights covered) aaaaand two areas I know very little about, Native American and Oceanic. Plus, I haven't taught in front of a class in ages, and even that was not all that often, although I do sort-of teach when students and professors visit.

Basically, I'm tremendously excited by the possibility, and also reeaaaally nervous. Will let you all know if it happens, because I'll be on here metaphorically wetting my pants if it happens.

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