My Thursday is my Friday

Short but bracing chat with Katie yesterday morning. She’s very much being practical about the breakup, and has explained why she’s not planning on coming to live with either her father or me, although personally I think she’s a fool not to. She is apparently giving notice on the apartment and since her s/o is not on the lease that will likely end their three year experiment in cohabitation with the father of her child. We shall see.
I am rather glum; I was hoping she’d be able to tame him, but he’s too self-destructive, and while he loves Alex as a reflection of himself, he certainly doesn’t love him for his own sake, and is continually bitching Katie out for ‘raising a wimp’ which considering what her father, brother and uncles are like (caregiving in many ways without being the slightest bit wimpy) is just plain absurdity garnish for the shit sandwich he’s making of his domestic life these days.
Tonight has been insanely busy, but not with discharges, just every other kind of hell. I’m working on a migraine again; the barometer has been hopping about like it’s got St. Vitus’ Dance. I’m having a bracing cuppa to cope. Posted some more smut, since I finally got all the caveats and quid pro quos in there. I literally just posted it and it has 13 hits already, heya.

came home


I mean I watched NCIS with Jeff but then I went to bed and did not get up until 4:30, which was absolutely remarkable. Still felt tired, went back to bed. Found he’d eaten 5 cheese biscuits out of the six I bought yesterday morning so I consoled myself with toast, a Call the Midwife and then went back to bed.

I just couldn’t deal with looking at a screen. Migrainy and bilious these last few hours…


There are 1.75 hours to go on the shift, and I’ve received 22 calls, including all the calls to clear work already done. This is the slowest night I’ve ever experienced here. I think it’s raining so hard that everybody is staying off the roads; emerg is quiet.

Even if they aren’t being called for discharge cleans, the housekeepers still have plenty to do; garbage and linen for all the wards, getting the garbage chute working again, trying to figure out what six legged bugs ended up in one of the isolation rooms, etc etc but there’s really nothing for me to do except read fanfic, work on Tarot for Atheists and drink cocoa.

Today I have to call one of the companies I have investments with and ask them why I’m being placed on a waiting list to sell their crappy fund.

Still waiting to hear back from Westcoast Guitars about Edith’s repair charge. I have an estimate but you never know what you’re going to get. She got smushed at Mike’s place, prob’ly when he was moving stuff around when the windows got redone, so he has very kindly agreed to pay for the repair.

I think I’m going to put reflector tape on the umbrella I’m using, if I can get get Jeff’s permission, since I think it’s his umbrella.

NOTHING BUT RAIN RAIN RAIN smashing all the records.

today’s non-events

Got into a beatdown with a bunch of one of the most self-righteous pot activists (like there’s another fucking kind) on twitter today.

Come ON I smoke, but I don’t smoke and blow smoke in the faces of the allergic and the elderly, and they’re announcing it’s their RIGHT, because this is VANCOUVER, home of TOLERANCE. Yeah I’ll believe that when Canada gives back the unceded lands, you unregenerate failure of logic. I’m like a homophobe for harshing their mellow. Srsly. Got accused of equivalency to homophobia for objecting to people dousing the entire west end in pot smoke for their stupid fucking 420 festival (which leaves heaps of trash mounded everywhere and they’re all cryface because they didn’t get a fucking permit.) F*ck me!

I realized that when you put asterisks in f*cking swearwords you’re putting a leedle asshole right in the meedle of the word and since when you’re swearing there’s usually an asshole involved, it’s mesmerizingly poifect.

I love Buster, he’s an amazing cat. And he loves me too, I know it. I don’t think Miss Margot cares if I live or die, but Buster does.

My latest piece of fanfic smut has more than five hundred likes (it’s cute and hot, so there)

I’ve written a BDSM scene in the same ‘verse but I’m not happy with it yet. I had to put in about 200 words about how the scene is ‘necessary but non-consensual’ which kinda blows (or not!) since scenes need consent if they’re to resonate with me writing, at all. So it’s like “We’ve talked about this – I hate it when you want me (and need me) to top you but I’m s’posed to read your mind – and topping when you’re angry at your partner is a bad bad bad idea” followed by “Do what ya gotta, man, just hit me really hard.” Oh, and there are minor children in the house while this sh*t’s going down, just to make it even more like real life, and our heroes must deal with the domestic consequences of Daddies fighting. I LOVE A CHALLENGE. After all, continuing to have interesting sex after kids *is* a continuing challenge in real life. People want carefree smut? they can look elsewhere; to me smut always has a cost. Who bears it depends on who’s being responsible, or not.

Not that anybody wants to know, but I’m really not into any of those behaviours in real life. Nagging at volume is sort of where I max out, ask any of my exes.

Continuing to have the poly life discussion with someone. It’s painful. Really painful. I feel like I have my nose up again a particularly interesting window. I can smell bread baking. But no. G*ddamned heteronormative uncommunicative bushwah (on their end, not mine.) But at the same time there’s NO F*CKING POINT to becoming an elder if you don’t understand that real life takes time, opportunities for growth don’t wait, and if you don’t consider who’s going to be impacted by your decisions, your years, your grey hairs and and your learning means squat. I am still 22 in some corner of my persona, for my enthusiasms still have all the joy of my youth; I just can’t write everyone affected by my behaviour out of the script any more. I do from time to time, but not all the time.

Fortunately, since I’m pushing 60 with a broom, I can contemplate my greed like the gorram caged bear that it is. Still here, but not running the show.

Katie is still having a rough time and she and Alex are both sick again.

I am not having a rough time. I feel pretty good, all things considered. I have another two weeks of full time work. If that changes, I’ll deal with it. I actually have a plan to deal with it that I think will make almost everyone happy, at least temporarily.

Rogue One is a fucking fantastic movie. Getting eaten by Disney was the best thing that ever happened to the franchise.

Now to check if my money transfer has come through.

I light a candle

For all those who bear the burden of pain
creeping upward through sleep & outward through the day
mindless & brutal
without compromise
joints locking & failing
fire-flicker of shingles
body-soaking drudgery of fibro
tooth pain from poverty & fear & never being taught self-care
old injuries, x marks the spot where you came off your bike
& broke something
& now you have a weather-vane set steady in your bone
the pain, once mental & now physical, of loneliness & abandonment
hugs that are virtual, smiles that are absent

gnawing cancer
migraines starring the heavens when there is no light
cluster headaches killing your will as an elephant throws down a shack

for all those who live in pain from noise & dirt & rudeness
& can’t find much in civility to ease it

guts knotted, cramping & sinister & tiring
the imprisonment of arthritis & the ‘overdoing it’

adhesions & keloids & the pain of being ugly, being useless
drawing tiny breaths because big breaths hurt

the pain of not being believed that you’re in pain
& then you’re given an addiction, as well as the pain
& now pivot between addiction & pain like a mechanical bird

funnybone & needlestick & central line

diffusely aching elders forcing themselves upright in the morning

itching pain, skin rashes

lying in bed with a hot water bottle
while your cervix crushes out the wine of ‘not this month’

endometriosis & you as a warrior emerging from a bath
of inconsiderate hormones

the times as a child you lay in bed & cried because you could hear your bones growing

earaches chasing all contentment from your toddler
putrid sore throats & burning bronchi

goddamned paper cuts & cat wounds gone septic
dog bites & thoughtlessly scratched-off bug bites

Foot pain as all those little compressed bones make their displeasure known
ingrown toenails, bunions, plantar fasciitis, charley horses

Knees that click & fail

Horse kicks & bites, all the farmer’s ailments
unprivileged by weather
now’s the time to do something & pain must be endured

Repetitive strains – hands & forearms, necks & backs
we are all of us little loci of hurt and debility

eyes of sand & photophobia

mouth sores, brushed against by teeth
& pinging in the sensorium like a red light on a street corner

embarrassed people who don’t want to say
it hurts when I pee, when I screw, when I poo & I don’t know what to do
& I don’t want to talk to you
or anyone about it

Pain tells you you’re unfit, & then you get the message again
& again
& again
from the TV, the city walls, the casual blunderings of friends
the sharp hashtags of your unfriends
& you, your body telling you
not today the grocery shop or the trip to the vet
not today the movie with friends and the beer at the pub
not today
not today
not today
& probably not tomorrow

The pain of knowing what you think isn’t true
& the drugs to drag the truth back to your thinking will stack on pounds
& kill your sex drive
& hurt you in all the wild free places you still have in your brain
the pain of knowing your compliance is convenience & not much else

The pain of trying to get strong enough to be independent again
& it’s never going to happen
& the choice is always, endlessly
pain or death

free form in grey

Facebook knows I’m in Burnaby so it tells me to watch out for rain. I am indeed watching the rain. I’m at the Aerie. The clouds are low, grey and without much in the way of form.

Walked to Mike’s last night – I hate asking him to pick me up unless we’re going somewhere immediately afterward, and it’s a miracle of geography that he lives close enough to walk to – and he greeted me with beer and lovely cooking smells.

At dinner, to the south and west and against the sunset, there was a running half hour of demonstrations of virga, also known as fallstreaks.

I got a tenderloin steak PERFECTLY COOKED OMG and veggies for dinner. Then more beer. Mike put on “Outrageously long 70’s rock songs” as the after dinner mix, which was pretty funny. I mean, I knew that In-a-Gadda-da-Vida had a drum solo in the middle of it but I didn’t remember it being so good, nor had I remembered that the lyrics are like the high water mark of brainless misogyny.

Now I’m up again, having slept through the night for the first time since November (normally I sleep in two shifts, and I’m generally awake between 1 am and 9 am.) I know my laundry is done and I’ve got more frozen dinners and made more cocoa powder and repacked my tea box and now I’m going to see if I can roust out Mike and go for breakfast before I head home and try and get a little more housework done before my shift starts tonight.

Sundays are usually fairly slow, but we shall see. I’ll be checking the schedule to see if there’s more work for me… the schedule runs out after the 29th. SO I MIGHT BE UNEMPLOYED or underemployed or whatever. And you know what, me no care.

Poor Alex is puking sick and Katie is afraid to lose her job while she minds him. They’ve been sick three times since September; she’s so tired of being sick and tired, but that’s what mothering a toddler is like in this pesthouse.

I light a candle for

All those reading this who have suffered a loss, the kind of loss that lessens you personally; not a thing you have lost but a large chunk of cognition and equilibrium chewed away by fate.
Perhaps it will grow back.
Perhaps is unlikely.

This space is full of ballerinas toe dancing through minefields of grief.

1 in particular arrives at the other side of the ‘stage’, limbs intact, smile intact.
Watching her, you’d never know they move the mines every night, as you stand to applaud you think, “So consistent in her performance,” and yet
as she moves she’s thinking she’ll be happy to hit that grief and sit with it a while, with whatever limbs she has left.
And then she’s reconstituted, maybe takes tea with a friend, something germane and mundane, and the friend presses fatty food onto her, seeing that she only has a pound of fat left on her and it appears to be between her ears
and not doing well/and there are other ballerinas to be visited and given tea

It’s our job to make other people happy and then they die, and they stole our job.

Of course there’s a long list of things wrong with that sentence
If you really want somebody to be happy it’s not a job
and I say
of course
fuck that noise, it’s always a job, it’s always been a job

but some jobs you scramble through your shower and into your clothes to get to, and that’s what making somebody happy feels like

and then it stops. There are no clothes to scramble into, or out of.

There’s a list of tasks with no happiness. There may be the shadow of grim satisfaction that they’re done, but there’s no happiness in it.

You’re an animal. You’re easily distracted. You find a minute, or two minutes, or three, when you’re not a tunnel from grief to grief, stormed and held by monsters that look like every harsh word and uncaring action you ever directed at the dead.
cheer up it could be worse you prick you prick that was the minute the downpour started
Cheer up it could be worse.
My beloved is dead, and I’m alive.

I wanted to be able to feel your love for another hundred years. I’m not suggesting I would have done something as depraved as put your consciousness in a robot but yes I might have, I might have, and now that will never happen.
I wanted you live forever because that’s just how wonderful you are. I can deal with dying but I wanted to believe you’d live forever and now you’re dead and I’m not allowed to believe that anymore.
There are so many things I’m no longer allowed to believe.

This space is full of a waterfall. Thanks to magic it looks white, but once you get close you see it’s not water, and it’s not white.
Every tear I’ve cried since you died is in there somewhere. Drip drip. I think some snot got in there too.

This space is full of steam. Hot water helps. I can still stand in a stream of hot water and let this poor messed up body feel some relief. Steam from a cuppa. Steam from my breath, waiting for the bus. Steam from the tops of buildings. Steam from icy grass as it sublimes. And with the pulse of steam I think of the next breath, which you will never draw, and it’s on me again, riding me like a parody of a savage, except it is not savage, and it knows how to ride.
I look at ceremonies of grief and they are all lacking.
Who will grieve you like I can?
Who will grieve for you when I am gone.


I’ve rebooted the POS program at work three times now. Honestly there are times when I want to smuggle Jeff in here to look at it and see how bad things really are, but then it occurs to me that he doesn’t want to come near this place without silver.

Otherwise a quiet shift.

I’m really tired. I was supposed to hang out with Alex last night but he’s puking sick so I can’t.

Watched Rogue One, which I adored, and The Great Wall, which was hokey but surprisingly effective. Jason Bourne in Medieval Fantasy China.

rilly? rilly?

after a year of bugging Katie daily to get a job, her s/o has learned to his horror that this means he must devote an entire day of his two day weekend to child care. This is apparently ‘not what he would prefer to do’ which all things considered is a truly remarkable locution. An amicable split is now planned.

He never performed more than two hours of childcare in a row the entire time Alex has been alive. I think of Paul’s efforts and while they were never enough in my harassed and underwhelmed view he was a proper parent.

Anyhoo, I won’t believe it until it’s happened, but maybe it will happen.

Work is fine. I am working full time for the next two weeks, after that who knows.


So… the other day, Jeff and I were joshing around, as we often do, and we began to watch the basketball Insane Equinox with less of an eye to the sportsing sportsiness of it all and more an ear to the quite stunning array of SFX the ball makes as it traverses, caresses, caroms wildly away from having struck violently, whiffs through, bounces from, and rubs itself suggestively around, the rim of the basket.

With each dunk, and attempt, we sat up straighter and straighter. It became virtually impossible not to laugh. Bonk! Ba-dunk. Wa-dung! Whiff. Sh-thwoop. It was like being at a Don Martin Sound Effects Workshop. Gump-it. Pok! Unk. On and on it went, with never a repetition, never a slowing of the infinite variety. Then I thought, wouldn’t it be funny to invent a language where you substituted one set of phonemes, say from English, with a ranked array of basketball hoop noises. It would take forever to say anything, and everyone in earshot would be long dead of laughter before your conversation was done.


Breakfast, once again from the Instant Pot, was beef congee. It was so damn good I had trouble maintaining muscle tone while I was eating it.

OH GOSH I’m still writing Destiel fic and I’m going straight to hell but I got like 150 likes in way less than 24 hours for the last one and I should probably shut up at this point.

Katie phoned me in tears. Alex is fine. One day she will tell herself a story that her babydaddy is not in. They are all stories.

Back to work. A lovely quiet shift, nothing nasty or jarring….


Poor Mike. He’s sprung a rib (you can actually see and feel the difference) and while I pounded on him for a while and helped the muscles relax, he’s still sprung.

We went out last night to Cafe Deux Soleils to say goodbye to his French colleague Pierre and I had the veggie pot pie and salad which was quite delicious and a good beer and a beer that should have been spanked and sent home. I’m heading back tonight for pot roast, and Jeff can join us if he wants to.

later: It took 20 minutes to cook in the instant pot and it was stellar…

weird shift

long about 2 am the heating quit. I piled on all my outer clothes and shivered for about three hours – the thermometer said it was 18 but I know what 18 degrees C feels like and this was close to 14. Then there was a godawful series of clanks through the far wall and it magically started working again.


Finished what’s been published so far of the Expanse series. It’s not fantastically well edited (I found a couple of howlarious typos) but DAYYAM what a freakin excellent story. My top ten reasons for loving the books / show:

1. Normalizing poly relationships. (Major Character comes from poly family.)
2. Really gritty examination of have vs have-not politics. (Belters vs. Inners)
3. Chrisjen – best politician I have ever seen in fiction. AND HER COSTUMES OM NOM NOM.
4. The humour. There are a couple of characters, Amos in especial, who can say things that completely crack me up. Repeatedly.
5. One of the best descriptions of what long term love looks like I’ve run across in fiction. (for more than one relationship, across more than one kind of relationship).
6. Awesome frikkin villains – and believable ones too. Some get theirs, others, oh well.
7. Shippiles of redemption and sacrifice. Redemption and sacrifice are immensely important to both plot and character development and don’t come from nowhere. You know what people’s moral compasses look like.
8. I love the Roci, I really really do. (The Rocinante, formerly the Tachi – it’s a ship that will take its place next to the Millennium Falcon and Serenity when Heaven’s navy is assembled.)
9. Representation doesn’t just matter, it makes up a large part of what the series is about.
10 Asskickings and orbital mechanics served up right. Almost too much detail, but the fight scenes are memorable…. that one scene in the corridor/elevator of the Behemoth is just amazing.


Oh, and the casting is perfect. COLPITO.


So I had an hour long scotoma this morning; it was of a zebra striped worm running all over my visual field, sometimes obscuring half of it, sometimes one corner. Spent a lot of time in bed today, mostly sleeping.

I’m adjusting my diet a little to see if that helps and drinking less caffeine overnight (but not going cold turkey, that will make it worse.)

Upsun edit is finished. I’m going to do another really close re-read to ensure that there are no continuity errors between the first two books (caught a couple of doozies – easy fixes, fortunately), and then hand it over to Jeff to upload. So I missed my end of Feb deadline but not by too much – there’s maybe another week of close re-reading to go. I am working full time, in case I hadn’t previously pointed that out.

I wish it was funnier, although it is in spots, and the second book in the trilogy has some of my favourite humorous bits in the whole series. Midnite Moving Co., which I wrote as an entertainment for Jeff, is consistently the funniest thing I ever wrote (I laughed very hard the last time I re-read it in a couple of spots, since I keep forgetting there are certain lines I wrote which are gen-u-wine highsterical) and now I want all the books to be like that. Oh well. I started out wanting to be taken seriously and now all I want to do is make people laugh, since that seems to be harder to manage and somehow, in this environment of doom and gloom, quite laudable.

Contemplating the 75k words I’ve written on Destiel fic since the beginning of January with something like horror. I have to finish it. It’s never aliens, except this time it’s aliens, and I’m planning on MOVING THE MAGNETIC NORTH POLE as part of the thrilling climax.


With side trips for a little light porn.
Watch me juggle, I am the two of pentacles.

Kat Tanaka Okopnik continues to be awesome

and I quote

Once again for the people who didn’t get the memo all the other times:
Mansplaining doesn’t simply mean “a man condescended to a woman”. It means “a man with lesser expertise attempted to override a woman with greater expertise AND SUCCEEDED because of societal support for misogyny.” [ADDENDUM: “…even if the woman managed to wrest conversation back from the mansplainer.”]
(My irritated thanks to people who necessitate my revising and revising and revising definitions so that the points are as pointy and clear as possible.)