Assorted updates

I feel like I haven't posted a general life update here in ages. Partly that's because I have half a dozen other entries-in-progress awaiting my attention, but partly it just hasn't occurred to me.

So, some assorted tidbits:

  • I ordered a wall of bookcases from Hoot Judkins. This isn't the super-tall-bookcases-with-library-ladder that I'm still hoping to do on my other very tall wall; this will just be a row of four reasonably nice eight-foot-tall bookcases that go together nicely, replacing the three-and-a-half shorter mismatched bookcases that are currently there. It won't accommodate all of my excess books, but it will ease the strain considerably. Should be ready in late March, sometime before my birthday.
  • Every once in a while it occurs to me that I can actually buy food that I like but that requires a little bit of very basic cooking. I recently got a couple of yams, a couple of artichokes, and a couple of ears of corn, and last night I baked, steamed, and boiled them, respectively, and they are all yummy. Maybe someday I'll learn how to cook asparagus and then I can have all of my favorite dinner vegetables at once.
  • For about two weeks, I was constantly exhausted. I was getting a little more sleep than usual, but it was feeling like a lot less. I took a two-hour nap one day and a two-and-a-half-hour one another day, but they didn't help much. Nor did NyQuil, my old standby. Monday it was particularly bad, and Tuesday it was worse—even after the nap, I stumbled through the afternoon feeling like I'd barely slept in weeks. But then Wednesday morning I woke up feeling fully rested and awake, and I was fine all day yesterday and today. I have no idea what happened. Well, I did change my sheets Tuesday night, but I can't imagine that was what was causing the problem.
  • Have also been generally stressed about various things during much of that time, which may be partial cause, effect, or both of the sleep problems. Among other things, received three story rejections in one week a couple weeks back (for two stories; one of them was rejected twice during that week), a personal best for me; response times have gotten a whole lot shorter since last time I submitted stories. Which is great, but it does make for more frequent rejections. And both of the stories I've currently got out are probably too nonfantastical to work as sf, but too dependent on sf genre stuff to work as mainstream. So I'm hoping to spend some time soon finishing an actual fantasy story so I can send that out.
  • Had my annual physical. Went fine, but am still mulling stuff the doctor said; she wants me to be concerned about my weight as such, regardless of health issues. I'm finding it a complicated and difficult topic, and one that I'm not ready to discuss yet, so just putting this here as a placeholder.
  • Wednesday morning, I biked to work, and a car paused nicely for me even though it didn't need to, and suddenly I was feeling really happy and cheerful. It didn't last all that long, but it was a lovely little mood-lifter. Sometimes doing something nice for someone can really make a difference to them.
  • I'm hoping to bike to work at least once every week of this year that I go into the office. So far, I've biked twice a week almost every week of this year. Which is great as far as it goes, but a bit silly that it hasn't been more than that. Especially considering that I semi-recently discovered that it's actually faster for me to bike to work than to drive, if there's any traffic and and/or if there isn't a parking space immediately available when I arrive.
  • I've been spending less time than usual on Facebook this week. I was already thinking over the weekend that it was time to cut back, and then both Monday and Tuesday morning I had day-job stuff to do as soon as I woke up so I couldn't do my usual leisurely couple of hours of social media in the mornings. I'm still checking Facebook a couple times a day, but I'm trying to focus mainly on stuff that (a) seems especially important to a friend, or (b) mentions me. It's working reasonably well so far. Don't know if that'll last long, but it's a useful experiment.
  • Watched most of the BBC version of Henry IV, Part I last night. I had never seen it before; my interest was piqued by rewatching My Own Private Idaho a while back. I don't think this production is the best Shakespeare ever, but I'm loving the language—it's nice to be reminded just how amazing a writer the guy was. Marvelous metaphors, strings of curses, some very funny lines. There are also some extended monologues that maybe go on a bit too long, and in the first half-hour there are at least three instances of insulting a man by calling him womanly, but even so. I think my favorite part so far is in Act I, Scene 3, when Hotspur keeps railing against the King and won't shut up long enough to hear Worcester's plans—that felt very true-to-life to me. I also liked Hotspur sniping at Glendower's fantastical self-promotion, his whole “spirits from the vasty deep” bit. And I like what the actress who plays Kate does with the part, and I like the use of “Suo Gân” as Lady Mortimer's lullabye. (She and Kate come very close to passing the Bechdel test, but not quite.)
  • Recently obtained the cooperative boardgame Flash Point, in which the players play firefighters trying to rescue people and pets from a burning house. I like it a lot; not as much as Pandemic or Puerto Rico, but it's much faster/easier for people to learn than either of those, and gameplay is smooth and quick. I haven't yet played the full advanced game, but I like that the rules explicitly suggest ways to ease into that by introducing pieces of it a bit at a time.
  • Recently finished reading Karen Healey's When We Wake, and am two-thirds of the way through Ann Leckie's Ancillary Justice. Both excellent; both will be on my Hugo nominating ballot; I hope to post individual entries about each of them soon.
  • Also read the first issue of the excellent new Ms. Marvel comic-book series; hope to post more about that soon too.

I'm sure there's lots more—movies I've seen lately, devices I've acquired (especially excited about one I'm hoping to pick up tomorrow), thoughts I've thunk, et cetera—but more on all of that anon.

And on that note, I think it's time for me to go finish watching Henry IV, Part I.

2 Responses to “Assorted updates”

  1. fran.altvater

    Asparagus is actually very easy–you just have to watch it for done-ness (which is a personal taste issue, since some people very wrongly like their asparagus mushy). Trim the bottoms as they get woody and fibrous. Drizzle with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper (or I sometimes will use a lemon pepper). Then either roast flat on a cookie sheet or pan saute.

    Miss you!


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