scarlettina: (Default)
It's like clockwork around here: Labor Day comes and Mother Nature flicks a switch. Though Seattle summers are usually mild, this year, we're going from scorching hot days to cooler temps and now the rains have come. They started yesterday and continue today; I think we've seen the last of the sun for a while.

I'm not quite ready for autumn. I haven't changed over my wardrobe; I suppose that happens this week and weekend. Last night I changed my blanket from summer- to winter-weight. I don't have quite the right shoes for this weather; the boots that I've worn for three years now have got holes in them--perhaps not the quality I thought they were when I bought them.

And Rosh Hashannah is bearing down upon us with me, once again, not having tickets for services anywhere because I don't belong to a synagogue and because it's the busiest time of year for me at work. (Most synagogues don't know what to do with me anyway; they're set up for families, not for independent Women of a Certain Age.) I failed to get tickets for services at UW's Hillel, which I've done before. I live within walking distance of the local Chabad House (the only congregation in town that doesn't require a donation for High Holiday tickets), but I wasn't brought up Orthodox. And though their outreach is friendly and welcoming, I'm a little intimidated by the prospect of what will surely be a less-than-egalitarian approach to services. I'm not the sitting-in-the-back-row type. And so I'm once again a little bereft at this time of year.

And, as mentioned above, it's the busiest time of year at work, which means I've got tons of work to do, oftentimes overseen by a million managers, all of whom want to have check-in meetings to ensure the work is getting done. Which means talking to my actual manager about the irony of negotiating the work needing to be done versus attending meetings to report on said work. I can meet or I can execute; I can't do both effectively simultaneously. This year, it seems like it's worse than it's ever been. I keep putting off or declining meetings, and the managers who run said meetings want just five minutes, which often ends up turning into an hour anyway. And then I have to explain myself and my work to everyone. Especially irritating are the compliance managers, who insist that they don't have to be familiar with our website (on which I work) but then insist that I give them a tour to ensure I'm doing the work. It's maddening.

So, yeah. The turn of the calendar comes and the darker, cooler, wetter days, the busier days, come along with it. I miss living somewhere with a more gradual segue into autumn and winter. But every now and then we get a glimpse of the beauty that autumn can offer and I'm pleased.
scarlettina: (Rainy Day)
It's storm season in Seattle. Most people think of Seattle as Rain City, but when people think of rain, they think of how it rains wherever they live; I did, when I first moved here. As it happens, I moved here during the rainy season, and my first rainstorm here was epic, a very New York sort of storm, so strong that you couldn't see out a car window. (That drive, a most memorable one with coworkers, scared the hell out of me.) I wondered what I'd gotten myself into. But what I quickly learned is that rain in Seattle is really more like drizzle in New York. Or it mists. Or it spits. Seattle doesn't really get downpours except for maybe two or three times per winter. And it almost never gets the big, cathartic thunder-and-lightning storms I knew growing up. I miss them.

But earlier this week, local meteorologist (and patron saint of weather) Cliff Mass (as well as many other knowledgeable people) started forecasting The Big Scary, a giant storm of unprecedented proportions for the Seattle area. Wind gusts up to 50 knots. Many inches of rain in a very short period of time. He has since revised that forecast to only a little less catastrophic, but still impressive. It's going to be a stormy weekend.

I have done, I admit, fairly little storm prep. I went grocery shopping. I have enough food for me and the cats for several days. I'll be doing laundry this morning while I work at home. I can hear the wind and rain outside my living room and bedroom windows. I'll be staying indoors, though I have an evening engagement that I'd really like to keep. I will convene with the person in question as the time draws nigh and figure out what makes sense.

This weather reminds me that I keep wanting to pick up a pair of rain boots. In all the years I've lived here, I've never had any. My shoes have always done the duty, which is probably one reason I go through them so quickly.

Anyway, my point is that the rains are arriving with dismal fanfare and dark foreboding. Winter begins (I wore my winter cloth coat yesterday for the first time this season), darkness descends, and the urge to nest and hibernate encroaches.

Stay safe and dry, everyone. Be smart.
scarlettina: (Hot!)
Bathroom renovation
Stage one of the renovation is officially finished. The door is hung. Extra tiles have been returned. The clean-up crew has come and gone. Last Friday was the first day in about two weeks, maybe a little more, that I didn't have drop clothes across every floor and strangers tromping in and out every day. I didn't have to get up at 5 AM to be washed and dressed when the project manager arrived at 7 AM on the dot. It felt like a luxury, like a special event. I basked in my privacy. And I basked in the new bathroom: tiled and grouted and pretty as could be. Stage 2 will be glass installation. Stage 3 will be painting, though, in truth, I'm going to try to do some of the painting before the glass installation because some of it will be easier to do before the glass is installed. My blue-and-white bathroom continues to morph into being. Yay!

I have exactly one friend who isn't upset or outraged about the most recent turn in the Captain America story from Marvel. He is a longtime comics author and fan, and he is impressed and curious. I don't know if there's anything to be read into this other than as someone who's sat on the other side of the desk, his experience informs his perspective in a way that it doesn't for a lot of other people. For myself, knowing Cap mainly from the movies, from what I've read about the who created the character and how he developed, and what comics-reading friends have told me, I loved the character and am unhappy with the latest developments in the print version. But since there's nothing I can do it about, I won't fret about it. I'm just deeply disappointed that this most principled, honorable character has been so completely subverted.

Heat and cats
Here in Seattle, it is ridiculously hot and dry for early June. The cats have been shedding for a while, but for the last three days it's been like a fluff storm around here. Brushing has been regular. I'm lucky they both love to be brushed so much. And they have been remarkably cuddly with the heat. It is a reminder that many domestic cats descend from desert creatures.

SIFF 2016
I am behind in posting my film reviews. I will post more after I complete this entry.
scarlettina: (Rainy Day)
1) Here in Seattle this morning, it is, in fact, raining like the Biblical flood is coming. Here's the thing: Seattle rain isn't usually torrential. Usually, it's mist or drizzle that just lasts and lasts. Actual, umbrella-requiring rain happens rarely here. Our volume comes from duration, not saturation. So to wake up to the sound of hard rain on the roof (and the balcony, and the pavement in the courtyard) is unusual. I am not looking forward to braving the storm to get to work.

2) Zeke has been super-needy lately. I have to play with him all the time. I wake up to him snuggling and kneading me, which then requires petting and scritching until he settles down to sleep. It's made it hard to give cuddle- and playtime to Sophie. I dislike his monopolizing my time. He's gotten very possessive and I have no idea why or what's going on. I want some time with my girl and need to figure out a way to get it.

3) Next week is the final measure for the bathroom renovation. It means that work will start within 2-3 weeks. I'm excited about this; it's been a long time coming and when it's done, I'll have a lovely new bathroom--with real tile and everything. Right now, that bathroom has linoleum and one of those one-piece shower-stall insets. And the shower surround is safety glass, with visible wire running through the panes. It's not ugly per se, but no one could call it pretty. It will be more attractive when it's done, and far more usable overall, I think.

4) I am reading Marie Brennan's Voyage of the Basilisk, the third volume in her Memoirs of Lady Trent series, and enjoying it quite a bit. I like her dragonologist and her rich world descriptions. It's a fast read and an engaging one.

5) Passages: The news of editor David Hartwell's death has spread like wildfire through the science fiction and fantasy community. Though I didn't know him well, and had mixed feelings about our few encounters, there's no question he was a major influence in the field and leaves behind him a legacy of novelists and editors whose careers were made or changed as a result of his work. Respect.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) Weather: It's been insanely dark the last few days. Cliff Mass, Seattle's weather guru, says that Monday, December 7th, was the darkest day in Seattle in 9 years. If this morning is any indication we may break that record again. I've got my happy light on as I type. It's helped me before. Looks like I'll really need it today.

2) Self care: I started on antidepressants about two months ago. Yesterday, I forgot to take my medication and only realized it when I was already on the bus on the way to work. I took a dip last night that was murderous and had a really tough evening. Self care has always been a challenge for me--but I can't let that happen again.

3) Photography: I've been (finally) creating photojournals of the Europe trip I took in 2012, including pictures and my LiveJournal entries from the trip. I've completed and received the Paris book. (I use Blurb, which offers a lot of flexibility in design that other applications don't. It's more expensive but it's worth it for me.) Now I'm working on the one for Lithuania and Amsterdam. I'm enjoying looking back at all these pictures and journal entries. The weather was beautiful in Paris; it was dark, rainy and overcast almost the whole time I was in Lithuania and Amsterdam. I'm using PhotoShop and iPhoto to try to lighten up some of the photographs; it's an interesting exercise.

4) Work: Everyone I work with these days either telecommutes or lives and works in Portland. I'm the only one on our team that works from the office anymore. It's very lonely. There are other folks at the office, of course, in other groups. I'm trying to make connections. But it's really challenging: I go to the office and there's no one there. I come home, and it's just me and the cats. I need to make more plans and see more people. It's not healthy for me to be so alone so much.

5) Books: I'm reading very slowly these days. I started Silver on the Road by our own [ profile] suricattus recently and am enjoying it hugely. It's very good indeed, with rich and layered character building, and an atmosphere of delicious mystery in her version of the Weird West. I'm taking my time with it and I recommend it.

Storm's a-comin'

Tue, Nov. 17th, 2015 08:10 am
scarlettina: (Portlandia)
The weather people are saying that the Seattle area's going to be hit with a major storm today: rain-rain-rain, winds of a major proportion, snow in the mountains, all manner of weather that is generally uncomfortable for human beings and other living creatures. In the wake of my two sick days last week and my day off yesterday, working from home seems like an excellent idea, so that's what I'm going to do today--and probably tomorrow and Thursday.

What about Friday? Friday, I fly to parts south to visit my cousin P and his wife S. Thanksgiving week will be another short work week for me, and then things will return to normal again--at least until Christmas week.

I'm so not ready for the holidays. The days go quicker and quicker. I'm told this comes with age. Considering the alternative, I'll take it but I don't have to enjoy it.

Had a good weekend--a roadtrip to Portland to stay with [ profile] davidlevine and [ profile] kateyule. It was lovely and stress-free, which I really needed. We cooked a lot, talked, and . . . oh yeah, I got a new computer and printer. My old MacBook Pro was ten years old; it was time. The machine sort of pushed me into it, refusing to boot completely and all. Thankfully, everything was backed up. Looking forward to getting the new machine set up and rolling. I have writing and genealogy and photography to do.

Also got to enjoy a delicious dim sum lunch with [ profile] calendula_witch and [ profile] mark_j_ferrari. I don't see them nearly enough. Mark had never had dim sum before so it was delightful to watch him discover the joys of shu mai, dumplings, three varieties of bao, sesame balls and egg custard tartlets, among others. He displayed the appropriate dismay at the chicken feet. I think we have a convert.

Also, I made a new necklace for the first time in quite a while, a beautiful thing in shades of smoky blue and copper with fresh water pearls. I spent more on it than I should have, but it's one of the prettiest things I think I've ever made. Mark declared it gallery-worthy. I preened a little at that.

So, now I go off to work after five days of not doing so. I anticipate an overwhelming amount of email and tasks needing to be completed. I want to like my job more than I do, but at this point I'm extremely frustrated with the stagnation and the lack of promotion or movement options. I'm looking at my options and considering a change. We shall see.
scarlettina: (Autumn)
It is definitely autumn. I find it harder to get out of bed in the morning; it's staying dark later every day. It's colder; the next time I change my bed sheets, it will be to put on the winter bedding. I need to dig out the winter jammies. And the kitties are cuddling with me more than even just a week ago. I find that all I want to do is hunker down under the blankets and hibernate.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) Warm weather: It was warm and sunny this weekend, so I did the things one does when the sun comes out. I went to the West Seattle Garage Sale Day with a friend and picked through other people's cast offs looking for treasure. (Found some!) And I transplanted the coleus into outdoor pots. I have three pretty varieties out there now. I hope the warmth lasts and nurtures them into bushiness. I will be doing my best to help along this process. I loves me my coleus. I also topdressed the strawberries and am hoping for a better crop this year. (I've already got one little berry, electric green and growing, on the vine.)

2) Reading: Just finished reading Marie Brennan's Tropic of Serpents and while I enjoyed it, I found myself feeling as though some of the things she set up paid off rather weaker than I think she intended them to. The end felt a little rushed to me. The book felt somewhat uneven. Isabella is still a fun and interesting character and I am likely to read the next volume, but my hopes will be more reasonable.

3) SIFF is coming: With the inevitability of winter in a George R.R. Martin novel, SIFF approacheth and I'm still picking my movies. I promised myself I would have my schedule mapped out by tonight so I could go get my tickets this evening on the way home from work, but I have failed. Maybe I'll use my lunch break today to review things one more time. We'll see. I'll post my schedule once I have it nailed down.

4) Mother's Day: Though the day itself was quite fine, the cultural overlay of the day--the "holiday"--was a mixed bag of emotions, as Mother's Day always is for me. Glad it's over. Moving on.

5) Day job: There's been a lot of change at work, a reorganization that has moved me into a different department, upending a lot of plans I had and a lot of social infrastructure I was building. I'm considering my options now, considering the lay of the land and trying to figure out what I want now and what I want next. It's stressful; my stomach hasn't settled in nearly a week.
scarlettina: (Blue)
"Life's a bitch and God's an iron, and I need a drink and a rubdown."--[ profile] suricattus

That pretty much sums things up right now. My state of mind is the result of two pieces of e-mail I received last night. I'm not going to get into detail about either one, except to say that one was my fault (or at least it feels that way) and the second sort of exacerbated the feelings produced by the first. I received them both relatively late in the evening. I had a shot of whiskey and went to bed.

Weather: I wake this morning facing showers and thunderstorms in Seattle, suitable to last night's personal storms and to the dramatic urge. While the area needs the rain--it's been a very dry summer--I don't welcome the return of the darkness. It's always hard for me to take.

Movies: In other news, I saw "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" last night. Not only is it a remarkable technical achievement, it's just a really good movie. I want to see the next film in the series, like, tomorrow. (And yes, it's coming. The director of "Dawn" has already signed on.) Somebody, please, give Andy Serkis the special Oscar he so richly deserves. He has invented a completely new form of acting, and he's a master. (In the meanwhile, it looks like he's going to be in the new Avengers and Star Wars films. Glad to see him so busy and in such high-profile projects.) Tonight, I'm seeing a press preview of "Guardians of the Galaxy" with SA, my friend the film critic. I could use something light. Here's hoping the movie succeeds.

Snow and cars

Sun, Feb. 9th, 2014 08:59 am
scarlettina: (Snowflake 2)
Yesterday, I went over to the Wayward Cafe for my friend CW's birthday. Also present at the festivities was [ profile] oldmangrumpus and, eventually, some other pleasant and attractive strangers. We played boardgames and ate delicious vegan treats, then went back to CW's place for some good, ole fashioned, meat-eater's lasagna and some birthday cake. It was, all in all, a very pleasant afternoon and early evening.

And then, it began to snow.

Grumpus kindly walked me back to my car in the snowy darkness and I headed home. I stopped at Trader Joe's to stock up in case the snow stuck and then hightailed it back to Queen Anne. Where, I discovered, the hills were just frosted enough that I couldn't get the car into the carport (which includes a pretty steep incline). I parked my car on a side street, where it still sits. A little later this morning, I will walk down the hill to check on it and make sure it's OK.

In the wake of the last couple of years, with their various bits of automotive drama, I find myself hesitant to leave the car in public, unprotected places. I am unhappy about driving in snow (rain doesn't bother me, and thank God for that in Seattle). And I'm just far more cautious about protecting my car. I don't like this hesitancy that's grown in me. It's completely understable and completely justified, but it makes me feel old and vulnerable; I hate that.

I was going to go out to shop for lighting fixtures this afternoon--that plan is off. So I'm going to stay home, poke around online for ideas, and try toget other things done as well. I'll find a way to make it a productive day one way or the other.
scarlettina: (Snowflake 2)
1) Vague-booking about social drama: The phrase "I thought this was a safe space" is often--not always, but often--deployed as a guilt trip when someone says something or does something inappropriate and is called on it. That shit just makes me crazy. And it makes me crazier when it's used by someone whom I thought was either more straightforward or less manipulative than their use of the phrase indicates they really are.

2) Weather: The entire rest of the country is being challenging by extreme weather. In Seattle we've got sub-freezing temperatures, which is pretty extreme for this part of the nation, but it's been dry and clear. The fact is we're getting off pretty easy compared to, for example, New York, Pennsylvania, and so on. This doesn't lessen the fact that it's freaking cold and I'm wearing more layers than I would prefer.

3) Cat-sitting: My cat-sitter has sent out a card announcing that she's retiring at the end of June. I knew it would come--she's an older woman--but I'm really sad. She's been a fixture of my time in Seattle, and though our relationship has mostly consisted of phone calls, I'll miss her. I've contacted her about two more kitty visits before she retires, and I've put into motion the obtaining of what I hope will be an appropriate farewell gift for her.

4) Making things: I recently picked up a knitting loom and am nearly done with my first scarf, a stretch of brown and pink wool that I'm looking forward to wearing. I don't know whether or not I'll keep up with this, but it's been a fun project, and I expect to finish it this weekend. We'll see what happens from here.

5) Foolscap: The convention was last weekend. It marks a year since my last car accident and the start of my experiment in carless living. We know how the experiment turned out. It was a fun weekend, but the convention came up so quickly, with so little fanfare from the concom, that it was an unexpected occupation of my time and I'm behind on a number of projects as a result. This weekend, also crazy busy--but at least planned busy-ness, will be partly spent catching up. But I'm going to be behind in stuff for a while yet.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) I have a long list of books about which I want to post capsule reviews. Suspect this won't happen until the long weekend.

2) How can Chanukah be starting tomorrow night? It's not even December yet! On the upside, I got my brother's holiday gifts out the door early enough to be there for him as the days tick by.

3) The last two mornings, the fog locally has been so thick that visibility has been less than a block. As I look out the balcony door, I can see as far as the cabin behind a house two doors down. Beyond that, the fog casts a white blanket over the neighborhood so thick that Cthulu might sleep just beyond its edge and I'd never know.

4) I yearn for the long weekend. With our annual Thanksgiving feast in Kent on Thursday, some crafty plans for Friday and no plans at all for Saturday and Sunday, I want very much to Be There already.

5) I have this seed of an idea for a post on belief in God, spurred partly by [ profile] jaylake's musings on the difference between faith and science, and the questions each answers, but I have to get dressed so I can catch the 8:30ish bus. Oh dear, how the time flies!

Bus commuting

Tue, Nov. 12th, 2013 06:26 am
scarlettina: (Rainy Day)
I started commuting by bus last March, when it was already beginning to be lighter in the morning. This morning as I look out the window by my breakfast table, it's dark and wet and cold. I don't have to leave for at least another hour but, well, I suspect I'm not going to enjoy this very much. I need proper boots. I need a warmer raincoat (and I've been looking for one but haven't found it yet). I am not properly outfitted for this commute.

scarlettina: (Rainy Day)
Apparently yesterday's weather has made national news. And it's supposed to continue today.

I'm fine: warm and dry and up far too early (thanks, Ezekiel). Haven't lost power.

Yes, the rains have been astonishing the last day or so. It rains in Seattle but never like this. My home is at the top of an incline so flooding isn't quite the concern for me that it is for others. I did, however, spend all of yesterday indoors (except for dinner time--a magnificent meal at Tanglewood Supreme in the company of [ profile] calendula_witch, [ profile] markferrari and EB--apparently we arranged our dinner engagement at just the right time; the rain was soft and the winds were relatively low for a brief period, anyway). But I watched the storms from my windows. I've never seen standing water like that on my balcony before, and while I've seen the big fir trees in my neighbor's yard bend and sway before, yesterday it looked like they were pitching a fit.

Weirdly, when I was roused from bed by cats this morning (at 5:45), light was streaming into my living room window--from the moon, peeking through a break in the clouds, a break which has since closed up pretty thoroughly. It's still pretty windy out there. As the sun rises, I can see thick clouds marching across the sky, apparently lining up for another day of high-volume precipitation.

I need to go out for groceries, but I'm going to watch the weather carefully before I do anything. It may be a day of leftovers and improvisation.

Here's what the forecast map looks like from USAToday. That little black pin in the map there pinpoints my neighborhood. Looks like an invasion, doesn't it? Reminds me of the motion sensor maps in the movie "Aliens." I brace myself for the onslaught.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) Autumn has arrived in the Pacific Northwest. It's 7 AM-ish and it's dark outside. Well, more like twilight. It's wet and cold. It's definitely autumn and nearly October. I'm actually rather delighted about the start of the haunting season.

2) I have minimal plans for this weekend. Dinner out tonight; writing and day-job stuff tomorrow. Everything else is negotiable, but my negotiating position will be a tough one for anyone who wants my time, as I am feeling stingy. I want this weekend for myself, to do things that need to be done or that I want to do, like the crafting and creating I mentioned in my last post.

3) I need to gin up some ambition. I have gotten out of the habit of wanting things overmuch. I'm not talking about wanting a book or a skirt or the aforementioned crafting time. I'm talking about ambitions for myself, my writing, the idea of my making a difference in the world, of doing something really special with my life. Maybe it's age. Maybe it's being told "No" over and over again. It feels . . . bad. I need to learn how to Make Things Happen again, learn how to be OK with being determined and pushing through.

4) Still looking for a car. I have learned that the model of car I was looking at is notorious for electrical problems and that it's known for just being badly engineered. Oh well. Back to the drawing board. At least I hadn't purchased the one I was looking at. The search goes on. I don't want to buy something new; I don't want to go into that kind of debt when I'm finally beating down the debt I have. If I look at newer used cars, I may still go into debt, though not quite as much. Must strategize.

4) Still haven't made any decisive moves on the house renovation. I really should do that.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) I am in the process of cleaning up my bedroom. It's fascinating what such archeology can turn up, especially given my epic levels of clutter tolerance. Here's one thing I've realized over the last couple of days: Leaving things in piles for stupid-long periods of time enables me to detach from them emotionally, making them easier to dispose of when I finally dismantle the piles. I don't think I ever consciously understood this before. It's not a technique I recommend but apparently it's one way I deal with separation anxiety from clothes and other emotionally-freighted inanimate objects. Back in the dark corners of my head, I fear this is the first step toward my becoming a hoarder.

2) Cats are creatures of habit. I have always known this; it's a thing you come to understand after living with them for decades. But Zeke takes it to a whole new level. Mornings are models of clockwork efficiency:
--Wake up human at 5 AM on the dot by confirming that gravity still functions. Method: Knock the glasses case off the night table.
--Meow for breakfast.
--Eat breakfast and then attempt to eat other cat's breakfast.
--Meow for playtime. Ensure that gravity still functions by attempting to knock toy dalek off shelf, thereby rousing human from breakfast table.
--Playtime: chase feather toy. Fetch feather toy.
--Meow for attention.
--Settle into human's lap, knead arm, soak sleeve with drool.
--Retreat to quiet corner and chill.
This pattern occurs every morning. Every morning. There is no breaking it. This is why it's hard for me to write in the mornings. Zeke must be attended to. If I put him in the carrier, it's 20 minutes of piteous meowing, which also interferes with writing.

3) Sophie attempted to rip open my arm yesterday. Actually, she succeeded in a pretty spectacular fashion. As I removed her from the kitchen table, she inflicted upon my wrist a three-inch gouge that, 24 hours later, is still sore, not to mention the lighter, 5-inch scratch further up that same arm. I look like something out of Frankenstein's laboratory. It will most certainly leave a mark.

4) Winter is coming. My bedding is in transitional mode. Yesterday I removed and washed the summer bedding and replaced it with summer sheets and a winter quilt. It's not quite yet cold enough for me to put on the jersey sheets yet, though I suspect the time is coming. Must start transitioning the closet as well.

5) I'm starting a work-out routine again. I'll probably write more about this at some point soon, but there's a gym in the basement of my office building equipped with not just the usual gym accoutrements but a full-time manager and trainers. I have an appointment with a trainer today. I'm hoping to kickstart my weight loss again. Should be interesting.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) I just finished reading Christopher Moore's Sacre Bleu, which was recommended to me by [ profile] skidspoppe and I am here to tell you that it's not only a good book, it's a good fantasy, and that if you read genre you must read it. Seriously. (And if you are interested in art or history you should read it, too.) It's set mainly in Paris in the 1890s, mostly on Montmartre, the story provoked by Vincent van Gogh's death, and centered around the love affair between one Lucien Lessard, an artist and baker, and a beautiful, enigmatic woman named Juliette, and the color blue. Also around Lessard's friendship with Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, who is probably my favorite character in the book. Moore builds a wonderful history/mystery around the whole community of Impressionists, their work, and Juliette and her peculiar companion, the Colorman. The story hops between time periods, going back thousands of years and forward to 2012. I thought it was terrific, slyly (and sometimes broadly) funny. And it was great fun to read now that I've been to Paris and have seen so many of the locations mentioned. Well worth the read.

2) I leave at lunch time for Portland, there to work in my company's headquarters for a day, and to visit with [ profile] davidlevine, [ profile] kateyule, [ profile] jaylake and anyone else I'm fortunate enough to run into while I'm there.

3) Spring has sprung in Seattle, with sunny skies and temps in the mid-60s. Given my decades of experience in the region, I know the sunshine won't last, but I'm going to enjoy it while it's here.

4) I bought myself a pretty tote/computer bag that is seasonally appropriate--all pink-and-white paisley and waterproof (more or less)--and I am ridiculously happy with it.

5) Zeke is growing up to be extremely opinionated about pretty much everything, but especially about the fact that he thinks I don't spend nearly enough time playing with him and far too much time sitting at my computer. Meow meow meow all day long, with the occasional whine thrown in for good measure. I don't think I taught him that last habit, but I feel like it confirms my worst fears about myself: whine whine whine. ::sigh:: Our children learn what we teach them whether or not we mean to.
scarlettina: (Blue)
It must be convention hangover and the weather. I don't want to see anyone or do anything. And Roger Ebert has died, which dims the world's light in general.

I'm having a hard time right now expressing myself about much of anything--which is annoying because I actually have a number of things I want to write about. (That plus the fact that I wrote two thirds of a long LJ entry that appears to have been lost in email, about which I'm mightily frustrated.) I'm pretty sure it's because the weather has turned gray, cloudy, and rainy. I kind of hate bus commuting in the rain. And I need some time under a full-spectrum light. Or the sun. Whichever comes first.

Part of it, I think, is that last night Zeke knocked over a pile of stuff that included copies of the program I created for [ profile] markbourne's life celebration. It's the first time I've looked at it in a year. It's full of everyone else's writing, not mine, mainly because I couldn't find words to express anything I was feeling about Mark's death. I still can't--no words, just tears still. But I put it together. I chose the content. I did what I do best in honor of him: I edited. I guess that's something anyway.
scarlettina: (Rainy Day)
...and when I say "rainy," I mean torrential downpour. It's been raining hard and steadily for the hour that I've been awake. There is little less encouraging for the freeway commuter than hard-falling rain.

I was supposed to be productive this weekend. Mostly what I was, when I wasn't being the steward of a feline or sociably engaged, was vegetative. I just couldn't wrap my head around the many things that I need to get done. I also had a holiday anxiety attack, in that Chanukah starts far sooner than usual, and I'm nowhere near done with Chanukah shopping, mainly for my brother. I ran out last night and got a little done; more to be done today after work.

This year, with its trauma and grief and, yes, wonder and delights, has flown. I'm still not ready for the holidays--and yet Thanksgiving is Thursday. Gee.
scarlettina: (Five)
1) I'm glad to hear that my friends and family back east are safe as Big Mother-F*cking Storm Sandy moves on.

2) Weather in Seattle has been mild and damp, not as cold as one would expect at the end of October for which I'm truly grateful.

3) I'm way behind in processing my Europe trip pictures. Maybe I'll get more done tonight. ::fingers crossed:: Trouble is that I discovered spots on a lot of the pictures, which suggests that my lens was dirty and I didn't notice. I'm just glad that I have enough facility with Photoshop to attend to it, but it's slowing down my preferred posting speed.

4) This house desperately needs to be decluttered and vacuumed. I have no idea when this is going to happen.

5) Ezekiel Report, Day 4: Zeke has settled in nicely. He's playful, affectionate, and curious. He and Sophie seem to have achieved detente--no more hissing, but lots of sniffing each other nose-to-nose and a great deal of chasing each other about the house. Sophie has been unwilling to cuddle or sleep with me since Zeke's arrival which, while expected, has been genuinely upsetting to me. Last night for the first time, both Sophie and Zeke got up on the bed at the same time. This morning, when I woke up to Zeke kneeding my cheek, I discovered a big lump at my feet--Sophie, curled up between the top sheet and the quilt. It's not the kind of cuddling with her that I'm used to, but as far as I'm concerned it's progress.

BONUS! 6) This evening on KUOW-FM (94.9 FM, also streaming online and available as a podcast), Selected Shorts is offering Tales of Terror by Edgar Allan Poe, featuring "The Tell-Tale Heart" and "The Raven," hosted by Neil Gaiman. What a lovely, seasonally appropriate program!


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