Some mornings I wake up at 2 am and get up; this morning I forced myself back to sleep and woke up at 5:30. Like a little kid I lay in bed and thought to myself, “Oh, I hope Katie calls and wants to spend some time with me today!”

Then at a quarter to eight she called and we had breakfast.

It is so easy to make me happy, it’s quite funny.


And I’m going to see a doc about my suspected septic thyroglossal cyst Friday next, which is now bobbing around on the bottom of my tongue and which accounts for, get this FOUR OF MY SYMPTOMS.

Pain – generally they only hurt if they’re infected. It’s a completely ignorable amount of pain, which is why I’ve been ignoring it. Turns out you’re born with these suckers and they can literally never do anything to announce their presence.

Dysphagia and an occasional sense that my throat is closing over (WHICH LIKELY IMPACTED MY APNEA MACHINE USE)  – which comes and goes depending on how swollen it is, which makes sense considering it’s attached to the bottom of your tongue and moves when it does. Unfortunately this symptom has been MAJOR in telling me that I’m going demented, so finding out there’s another reason has given me life.

Metallic spit – an occasional sensation, see above, which is accompanied by a nasty feeling at the base of my tongue and a completely indescribable sensation in my mouth when it happens. It was MUCH WORSE during my taking antibiotics in November last and kept up for weeks after. Still happens a couple of times a week.

A previous symptom, not present since menopause – I used to get a large pimple on my neck just where they often push fluids and pus to the surface. Who knew.

Bonus symptom: having to hyperextend my neck so I can feel like I can breathe prior to going to sleep.

There is a less than 1 in 100 chance that there is carcinoma present. These things hardly ever go bad that way, although they can randomly collect fluid so they look like a half-goiter or get infected.

I wouldn’t even care about this birth defect – for such it is – but it’s affecting my ability to enjoy food, sleep and sing, the three major reasons I’m alive, so I’m going to try to get a diagnosis and then see if I can’t have it either drained or excised. I’d prefer drained but it would be entertaining to have a throat scar that makes me look right piratical.


and god won’t I look silly if I’m wrong about this, but fOlks, I rilly don’t think I am.



I love my family.

Getting lots of lovely comments on my fanfic. When people like the stuff you wrote for what you think are the right reasons……

More surgery for Paul

Man, to have dental surgery on your birthday.  I walked him home yesterday at his request (and Keith’s, the text I got from him was so nervous granny-like it was sweet as heck), and we hung around his place for the afternoon being lazy. Molars make damn big holes.  Now he has to wait a month to get the sutures out, and then be healed enough to get a post and implant.

140/82 is my blood pressure, I checked yesterday.  I won’t say what Paul’s blood pressure was since it was somewhere between ouch and boing.

I made pulled pork.  It is nommy.


The pain

My migraines sometimes appear as psychological issues rather than physical ones.  I described it to mOm and Jeff, because it was absolutely terrifying.  I could not rely on my senses. Thanks to Mike for getting me home.

The barometer hopped rather violently during the time I had the symptoms, going into Saturday morning.

No writing, obvs, and I’m sorry.  I’m taking today off.

Peggy heard about my headache and she and Tom came to visit and provide turkey soup in jars.  I will be eating it with good cheer, knowing that my friends like me enough to bring food.  (Sixers are slowly warming up to the idea – normally you get your own food.)

And I missed Star Wars with Shad and E-boy, which sincerely and egregiously pisses me off, but enh what can you do.

Roxane Gay rules and this post is TMI


So my very favourite Bad Feminist Roxane Gay, who has to deal with so much more intersectionality than I do, has participated in a puff piece in stylist.co.uk talking about her hygiene routine.  I told her I would follow her example.

At this point I can hear Jeff saying something, and then when I ask him to repeat it, he says, ‘Oh, nothing, nothing.’

I probably should shower more frequently than I do, being about three times a week, but as I get older I get dryer, and I feel like I’m turning into a desiccated old piece of sod.  I use Belle de Provence Honeysuckle soap because it smells very good, lasts a long time and is the one piece of luxury in my hygiene routine. Hardly anyone carries it and since it’s 6 bucks a pop I tend to buy in bulk when I find it.  I use Head and Shoulders brand shampoo/conditioner and buy it in the large pump size as it’s cheaper.  I use no other soap products.  I wash my hands every time I handle the cat, before I prep food and after I come in from being out in public as well as after I groom myself or go to the toilet.  I didn’t give a shit about washing my hands before I ran a restaurant.  Now I really, really do care about it, and it’s the simplest, fastest and easiest way to prevent illness, so why the hell not.

I hate all deodorants but I stink if I don’t use them.  When I’m feeling radical I wash, dry thoroughly and apply baby powder to my pits, but that’s good for about 12 hours before Jeff’s eyebrows do something improbable (the fan in the basement blows my effluent in his direction when we’re watching tv, so … yeah.)  Otherwise I use whatever kind of bo juice isn’t loathsome, and I’m like a lightning rod for deodorant being discontinued, so I try to be cool, but right now it’s a pretty loathsome vanilla smelly thing.  Gak.   Still better than the alternative.

I use two different kinds of eyedrops, thanks to the amazingly practical and super unjudgey Lady Miss Banjola, one for day, one for night, and I am not consistent in their use but by gar it’s a good thing to have them, because when you need them you’re like ACK MY EYES MY EYES I CAN’T GET MY EYES oh thank goodness I can see!  Also, thanks to her I found out that dryness amidships can be ameliorated by the twice weekly anointing of der ladygel, and she made brand recommendations, and I can get them reasonably cheap on line.  With that one small recommendation she made my life go from a meepy, withered parody of what Beeker sounds like after he’s been mugged, to me being able to contemplate having a boyfriend.  I don’t actually want a boyfriend, and the men in my life who squire me around do not wish to fill this or candidly any other vacancy wheresoever situated, but at least the prospect shifted from being painfully impossible to being ludicrously improbable, and only the Rumi’s Beloved could parse that shift in meaningful terms, but I view it as an improvement.

I pluck my eyebrows every day.  I watched the best eyebrow guy on the planet do a tutorial on youtube, and I thought “Hey, my OCD and some grooming tips wa-ho!” but I tell you my brow game is fierce, and it helps with the performative feminity, although I have not recently been mistaken for a man (it only happened the once, and I think the person was altered.)

This upping of the eyebrow game was subsequent to Keith picking out to extremely flattering and stylish frames for me.  I was looking really hard for a job and I wanted to be ready to interview at a moment’s notice, and now, provided I have a clean dress, I really am.   I pluck my chin hairs, and my (sigh, fuck my life) chest hairs.  I do not shave my legs or pits and anybody who wants me to can shave his or her legs and pits all they want but this lovely, amazing, FEATURE of adult life called BODILY AUTONOMY does not stop being awesome just because you are creeped out by my hairy legs, and the next time somebody calls me on it I’ll just say that sexism is uglier than hairy legs and any sensible person knows that.  Body hair sure makes men who have basic issues with mansplaining and feminism go away right quick, and smell ya later, ya squirrelfondling preverts.

Also, I got really really bad frostbite on my lower legs when I was in public school, so bad that the skin on my lower legs (the shaving zone) is burst-into-tears sensitive, so yeah, no, fuck your leg shaving.  It HURTS.  I bleed, and then all the little hairs growing back in catch in my bedding, so fuck you and go AWAY if you think I should shave my legs for any reason whatsoever.  As for my armpits.  When more than 50 percent of north American men shave their armpits, I’ll sign up for one of those monthly boxes of shaving gear, but until that day (bwa ha ha, coming soon!) yeah, just no.

I used to use Garnier number 60 hair dye and I still have some tucked away, but it really really bothers Jeff and I’m not a fan of doing it, I am a fan of having it done. Fortunately the colour is almost exactly the same as the two remaining stripes of colour I have in the mounting nest of grey that is my hair so even when I let it grow out it looks reasonably okay.  If I get another interview, which will be hard, as I am officially as of this moment no longer looking for work since hey we’re in a recession, and nobody would want to hire me even if I wanted to trade the best part of me for 24K net a year, which I don’t, and which makes me an elitist asshole. Ok.

I make my own perfume, which is called Cyprus, and has a secret blend of floral oil ingredients, and which smells fantastic on me (to the point where other women have demanded I sell them some, which I did) but everybody from my mOm to my brO thinks it smells like I’m hanging truck stop air freshener from my pits AND about 40% of my friends have chemical sensitivities and find it overpowering even when I’m using it gingerly so it’s only for special occasions.

My last pedicure made me limp for THREE FUCKING MONTHS and I am never paying for one again as Hecate may bear witness; now I cut off the parts of the toenail that stick out and abrade down the rest with a number of different kinds of pedicure gear.  I occasionally soak my feet and use footrub on myself or get somebody else like Katie to help out.  I am very very on top of my toenails because I can go from Happy Feet to ballerina outtakes (thankfully not shown here) in less than a week.  My hair, feet and nails grow at a tremendous rate, which is great because I get rid of heavy metals that way, but I must cut, hack, saw and file away with vigour.

I used to be an assclown about dental hygiene but I brush and floss every single day now (occasional lapses, but not many) since I can’t afford to lose the use of any more teeth when toothpaste and floss is so cheap.  I buy firm or super firm brushes and brush whatever way feels right and I pay for getting my teeth cleaned professionally once a year.  I am seriously considering investing in dental picks.

I have incredibly clean ear canals.  I hate the feeling of anything in there except air, but I no longer scrape them out with anything hard because it removes the hair that grows in the canal and I’m so clumsy I might deafen myself.

I wash my face with soap once a week.  Any more and I dry out like something that went with Scott to the Pole.

Once every three months I apply a clay facial mask.  I like how my skin feels afterward.

Once in a very long while I get a massage or a spa half day, but I can get the same results from rolling around on Wreck Beach and probably get exposed to the same amount of coliform in the process.


And there you have it.  Nobody asked for it, but that is my hygiene routine.


I meeped at Chipper for a while yesterday and she expertly diagnosed my problem and helped me get back on the rails. I’ve been sessile for a couple of days but I’ll be back to writing today. For background, coming up on 2nd anniversary of breaking my arm and losing the shop, so that’s probably feeding into the other issues.

I have a strong cup of coffee beside me and Jeff’s making more.


I finally went on a trip through the Stargate with Jack O’Neill last night.  Woke up with a big smile on my face, with his strictures ringing in my ears.


Buster just climbed the dead tree in the back yard.  I could barely see him through the blinds.  Wilde kittye!!!


Made my 500 words, now going downstairs to write a song.


Keith and Paul are apparently coming over soon to take me for a walk.  I’m still sore from yesterday…. but always getting better, symphisis is much happier now.


Sore from walking on concrete, happy to have cadged a meal off Paul (Keith paid for his own) and scored a couple of interesting books at the NW Library.  I told Paul I couldn’t walk home and took the bus, for which he kindly supplied the fare, and then I fed him home made limeade and went to watch the first episode of Dark Matter and the most recent episode of the Brink.

836 words for the day, most of it off to mOm.

Grr bleugh

Well it’s a good thing the transpeople I know personally aren’t assholes, because  the idea of having a transwoman tell me I’m oppressing her for occasionally mentioning that I have a Gold Star Darwin Approved Vagina would really really piss me off.  And I wouldn’t be nice about it.

The transpeople I know would roll their eyes and ask us to return to a more useful discussion.

Some woman who is not a professional medical person on the internet put up a 7 minute video on exercises for Pubic Symphisis pain, and in a shocking development, they really help.  Mike took me for Yellowtail Thai food last night down at the Quay  (I just ate the leftovers for breakfast… there is something of decadence in being able to have deep fried oysters for brekkie) last night and I crashed at his place.  He was still sawing logs at 5:30 am like any sane human so I let myself out and walked home.  MAN WHAT A DIFFERENCE.  I can honestly say that’s the longest and fastest walk I’ve had without pain in probably a year. And the sun was lovely, and the fresh breeze, which will probably resemble a damp blanket by midday, was restorative.  So I had a 2K walk in perfect weather as a start to my day.

Still sad about Anita.  She was a good woman.  I’ll post her obit later; she was a public figure in BC so there should be one in the local papers.

Sue comes to get me at 9:45.  I FOUND MY CHURCH NAME TAG more or less in time for the last service of the year.  Go me.

I think I already mentioned I wrote 1024 words yesterday, but here I go again.

New deadline for completion of the manuscript first draft is the end of August.  If I keep up my current rate that will be accomplished.

Non compliance

This is a new device for people like me, non compliant CPAP users.  No thanks, even if I didn’t actually use it last night I’ll stick with the CPAP that hydrates the air.

I believe I wrote 1007 words yesterday, but my counter went a little bloopy, so maybe it was only half that.  Bhwa.

Skytrain tracks caught fire this morning, so things are going to be dripping with slow for the commute. Line’s shut between Joyce and Waterfront, what a cluster.

Back to the saltmines.  I am trying to get started on a chapter that needs way more research than I have the energy for right now.

More non-compliance, this time from the Mayor of Burnaby. Go Derek.

WHO launches a program to catch the next big outbreak.

This is the kind of news item that really fires up the mystery writer hiding under my sf writer.

DADBODS ARE A THING.  Full disclosure.  Long about a million years ago, I was walking through the CNE grounds with Lois and Ruth (erstwhile Sisses-in-Common-law) we saw a lovely young man of about 20 rocking chiselled everything.  I turned to the ladies and said, “I dunno ’bout you, but I just can’t find a man super attractive these days unless he’s got a tiny bit of a gut.”  They both turned to me and burst out laughing.


Not everything is a confused mess

Yesterday 0 writing and 2.0 hours.

Church in the morning, took the bus to get there and it all worked out perfectly, except drinking that Timmy Ho’s coffee I bought coming up the hill from Sapperton Station made me so uncomfortably warm I spent the service in a state resembling that of a dish of colloid.  It was a good service, and would have been even better if the person living next to the Hall hadn’t been running a fucking weed whacker at irregular and annoyingly loud intervals during the exact time the service was running.

After the service I went to New West Station and waited in front of the Landmark for Mike and he was frantic about being late and I told him to relax.  When we bought the tickets, we went to the theatre, sat down, and the movie started, so nobody had to sit through the trailers.

Age of Ultron is a colourful, noisy, spirited MESS.  There are a couple of funny lines, and that’s it; it achieves spectacle without providing more than a tiny nod to anything resembling emotional connection, or pulling more than cursory nods at performance out of the principals.  I have no intention of watching it again.  I was an idiot… we really should have gone to Mad Max, but there’s no point wailing over spilled digital.

After the movie we had a late lunch at the Hub.  Great food and a wonderful view from the deck, but I’ve now lowered my expectations of their service to the point where I’m tempted to give my food orders to the manager rather than the assortment of Sand Snakes (think stunning, raven haired and sorta hostile) they seem to have hired as servers. But it was a yummy lunch, srsly.

After that, we saw Katie and Alex.  Happy sigh.

Then we went on an errand for Mike.  While I was sitting in the car looking through the hole in the roof at the brilliant green of the tree and the glorious blue and white of our unforecasted sky, I completely missed the accident; two bicyclists got into a rear ender with each other cause, hey, no brake lights, and all I could hear through the roof was two dudebros saying, “Sorry, man, jeez I’m sorry.” No injuries except to pride.

Mike was laughing when he came back the car, “Can’t get more Vancouver than that.”

Then we went to the Astoria and I had a grapefruit flavoured beer and no word of a lie I used to think I’d drink any beer, but this stuff was, in the memorable phrase of Dr. Filk, AUTHENTICALLY VILE.  We have reached peak craft beer, son.

Then we went to the Hastings Sauna.  My spidey sense (I’ve had something resembling prodrome for a week now) told me to stay the hell out of the sauna for more than a few minutes at a time. I did that and I believe I was wise. Even so the heat and eucalyptus made me feel very relaxed, and they play spa music in the front room, so I just lay there like a dead thing listening to desultory harp music with the oscillating fan blowing over my sweating and corpulent form while Mike roasted himself.  Ah, English.  It can make anything sound beautiful.

Then Mike gave me a lift home and I collapsed, while I realized I’d left my phone at Mike’s place when we stopped off there to get Mike’s bag.  He’ll drop it off sometime after he achieves consciousness today.

And then I couldn’t sleep, and couldn’t sleep, and couldn’t sleep.  It was one before I slept and seven when I woke up.  I feel okay though.

Today writing, laundry and cleaning, and ignoring the stuff on the PVR until Jeff gets home.


I am in a super strange mood, as I often be when the migraine (atypical) is pending (which it can do for weeks and then go back into its hole).  I shall make no decisions heavier than what to order for dinner (Mike’s treat) for the next 24 hours, and somebody please shoot me if I start making meeping noises about how nobody loves me, cause it just ain’t true.  Also, I’m doing laundry, because no matter what I do I get food on mah clothes.

Bwa ha ha, mistook Mike’s voice for Keith’s on the phone today.  I blame my brain chemistry.

I made word count yesterday (500 words a day is the recommended minimum) but continue, even after cleaning it with serious thoroughness to rassle with the cpap.

Wrigley!!!! omg Chipper you are the best.  I wish you could have heard me scream when I read that, you would have laughed your ass off.

Sometimes the cops have to use deadly force.

But sometimes it really seems like they don’t.

Back to naming babies.  Michel is NOT THE PERSON FOR THIS JOB.  Which is why he volunteered for it.  And of course he has ulterior motives, which add up to “The sooner the babies are born the sooner I can go back to making time with Kima hurrr durrr.”

Paul is supposed to collect me mid-afternoon to go walkies.  I am having trouble even making 2 k, but I suspect if I stick to someplace flat I’ll be fine.


So tired

I felt completely punched out after giving blood, and collapsed early. I forgot to put the cpap on, just fell into bed.

Mother’s Day dinner at Paul’s on Monday night, the earliest we can herd all of us into one corner.



Practice day

I couldn’t write, I couldn’t work on the church project, I was swithering like a’ idiot, so I said it’s a Mental Health Day and when Paul called and said, “Let’s give blood” I said “What a great idea but I can’t stand it for today.  I’m coming to your place with my mandolin on my back.” So I walked over there and it started to rain just as I got to the stairs and he left the front door open and I went up the back stairs so he had to go lock his front door and we had a good laugh about that and then I played Ain’t No Rest For The Wicked for him, which he hadn’t heard before.  I left him the lyrics and chords, and played it enough times that he started to work up some guitar and I started to practically bleed out my finger ends. It hurts to type today, bwa ha ha. Then we played our way though a couple of Oscar Brand air force tunes, I played my way through the In the Lineup for the Ferry song (I had played it through once and this time he could play along) and then we dawdled and noodled and messed about for a couple of hours, him marvelling that I FINALLY have the intonation problems sorted out on Otto.  He’s been out of sorts since GAFilk and he’s now perfect (gotdamn that floating bridge!!! it’s the one thing Peter C. did when he was making Otto that I hate) and if anything he’s louder and more resonant than before. Then I played Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked AGAIN a couple of times because I’ve shifted how I play it a bit, and was now comfortable enough that a) the tune as sung was actually sounding a bit more like the recording and b) the chord structure still doesn’t sound like the recording but it’s better.  Then I told him that if we ever play it when Katie and Keith are present for music night they will be singing along with the choruses – Katie and I had it as part of the ‘get going’ music mix for the café – and Keith knows it from the opening titles of Gearbox’s video game Borderlands, which we used to rewatch all the time because it’s like the best opening title in gaming.

Then he fed me lentil soup and beer and crusty white bread toasted with butter and a Non Refrigerated apple – the last apple he served for me nearly made my back teeth pick up their skirts and flee, it was so durn cold – but I admired his new fridge, for a net cost of $175 he got a bottom drawer freezer Kenmore with the door hung the right way although he did nearly spavin himself getting it up the stairs and he now has to replace all the brand new nosing for the stair treads ’cause they all have divots in them now.  (It looks like an alien dragged its nasty bits up to the first floor.) Apparently Keith hated the old fridge and did handsprings when he saw the new one and realized that HE wasn’t going to get roped into hauling it up the stairs (his job is very physical) or getting the old one out.

I told him about Replens, as Lady Miss Banjola had told me about it, and how along with eye drops the advice given ensured my life was a better place, except it’s FRIKKIN expensive and could he find eight packs in the States for me and he said he’d look.

We discussed putting together a book of family stories from his side of the family, while his mum’s still with us (doing fine apparently), as inspired by mOm’s numerous efforts, talked about some flying he’d been doing (he’s enjoying the soaring in Enumclaw, and of course I crack up every time I hear that name, for all the wrong reasons.) We talked about Keith and Katie and their marvellous young lives and challenges, the retirement party he went to at the Shark Club (where, apparently, the last pleasant drink servers in the lower Mainland have taken refuge) and the highly excellent noms he ingested there.

Then he took me for a quick shop including healthy food and unhealthy noms and beer AND helped me haul in groceries.  If there is a nicer ex in the whole universe then whoever has him / her isn’t publicly bragging.

Then at home we watched a couple of titles from the second season of POI and I turned the steak into itty pieces and cooked it fast with mushrooms and lots of onions and chili seasoning, not too much, and so to bed, where I got 2.2 hours on the cpap and am now ready to start another day, and maybe get a little more done.  Maybe.  Not a betting woman normally.

Success, or an approximation

So I’m off to get a CT scan of my unstable pelvis, and the tooth Dr. Katz fixed is now completely perfect in all respects, plus he ground just a smidge off a cuspid and now my mouth feels normal again.  The scan will be booked and they’ll call me, and then I back to see the bone doc about ten days after the scan to give them a chance to read it.

3.0 hours on the CPAP.  I feel very refreshed and not particularly in pain, which is pleasant.  No words yesterday.

I am ashamed to say I bailed on Paul last night, he wanted to go swimming, but I biked to and from the dentist and had a rather trying day in other respects, sitting in cold rooms waiting for doctors not being one of my oh doodie moments. Went to bed early, went to sleep early. For some reason the mask felt very comfortable last night, although I still took it off.  I think I was contemplating getting up and yelling at Buster since he was making so much frikkin’ noise.

Jeff is home, and Buster is much, much happier.  (With Margot, you can’t tell; her baseline temperament is so incredibly calm.) He is a daddy’s boy.

I did the math; if all the people who live in Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo, Kamloops, Kelowna, Abbotsford, White Rock and Chilliwack were homeless, that would still only be half as many as have been rendered homeless by the earthquake in Nepal.

Sometime in the next two hundred years Vancouver will get its own rumble. If it’s a megaquake it’ll be felt across Cascadia.  I’m starting to keep extra water on hand.

This sweet little piece of satire is from a filking buddy.

The worst slave trader.

Continued drug gang related violence (or so one supposes) in  Metro Vancouver.

Chipper sends me this hand flute playing virtuosity.

She also sends me this cute panoply of chordate behaviours.

I will endeavour mightily to get back on track today.  Except I have to do something for church.