Category Archives: whining

Well, that was a weekend

Those of you who know me personally are aware that I don’t have a lot of tolerance for high temperatures, especially humid high temps. I’ve done a lot of what’s recommended to help, but the bottom line is still this–I’m a lousy candidate for muggy, warm survival situations. Give me snow and ice any day instead, or else dry heat with cool evening temps. Hydration, electrolytes–no matter what, all of that is temporary. At some point, I succumb to the effects of heat exhaustion if I go through too many days of high heat without any cool relief. Come the big global warming, you’ll find me as high up on a mountainside as I can stand to be, probably seeking the last glacier for relief. If climate change turns to global cooling instead, I’ll be a happy girl.

Heat problems happened this past Friday. The temps hit the mid-90s on Wednesday, even on the Mountain, followed by two days where it was almost as hot. And muggy. Even worse in my south-facing classroom, where I couldn’t really open my door because of the noise and distraction from younger kids at recess for most of the afternoon.

Wednesday and Thursday were survivable, though the warnings from the ol’ bod started popping up on Friday morning with roiling gut, achy muscles, and general fatigue. But on Friday afternoon, as the room temps climbed toward 80+ degrees, I was struggling. I opened the door as soon as I could, but even that gave me and the kids little relief. I was simply grateful that my classes weren’t larger.

Still, I felt awful as I left work. I’d planned to go to the barn and ride Mocha, but realized that might not be too good an idea. I went home, self-medicated for the body aches with a couple of drinks after a good dinner…and ended up hurling it all back up. Fairly predictable, and it’s something that has happened in the past, even without the alcohol. It didn’t help that the house was hot because we’d had a contractor in to repair some dry wall, so the house had to be open to air out the smell while the mud dried. Even with ice packs on my neck I felt miserable and sick.

Saturday was pretty much a lost cause. I slept until noon, drank water mixed with sugar and salt to help my gut absorb it, but it wasn’t until 4 pm–about 24 hours after leaving that hot, muggy room–that I started feeling remotely human. Shortly after that I started writing, and got in about 1500 words. By Sunday I was sufficiently recovered, though tired, enough to clean up the room that had gone through dry wall repairs and move everything back, plus do lesson planning and write a little bit.

At least this is probably it for hot weather around here this year. Next spring, even if it is hot, won’t be so bad because of the angle of the sun. It’s only horrible in the fall (thank you so much Nasty Past Administrator who had the trees that blocked that sun cut down).

(And for those of you who’d offer advice, suggest ice pack head coverings, ice pack bandannas and the like–nope. All forbidden by dress codes for students which means I can’t do them either. And fans get subject to other issues of accessibility plus they don’t do that much for air movement. This is just a kvetching post, not a solicitation for advice.)

It wasn’t a completely lost weekend, for which I am grateful. Needless to say, I’m welcoming the coolness and wet today. It’ll still take a few days for the system to completely be happy post-heat, but like my rescue chrysanthemums that kept springing bigger and bigger the more I watered them this weekend, I’m coming back from the heat.

Winter is coming–and I’m one who’s looking forward to it.

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It’s…been a while. Obviously.

No, I’ve not forgotten about the blog.  It has just been a long and weird time. What with the quiet, stealthy launch of Netwalker Uprising (available on Createspace, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords) and the underwhelming response so far, and, well, Life Stuff…there’s not been a lot of blog action. Plus I’m carrying around a lot of frustration and such-like, even in the midst of some hopeful glimmers.

Amongst other things, I had a possible exciting opportunity connected to the Day Jobbe career present itself but, due to lack of sufficient support from the family, mainly because it would require a significant relocation–I had to back off from it. I’m still working through the anger and sadness of that situation. My decision was probably for the best but…I’m still extremely unhappy about it. That closes a door to something I had hoped would happen about now, something I’d dreamed of for years–and it’s gone. Another dream dead, joining the piles of hopes and dreams I’ve had to bury over the years in the name of family choices.

The lack of response to Uprising also makes me think this is another dream that is going to die. Granted, I’ve perhaps not pushed it as hard as I should have, but when I think of those who were excited about it earlier, but who clearly haven’t followed through…sigh.  Lack of promotion or lack of interest? I’m not sure which. I love the cover, I think the story’s a strong one, but still…crickets. Chirping. Nothing. Oh well, I own the rights to the damn thing and that’s probably the smartest thing I’ve done. There are other prospects I’m considering in connection to this world but it will take time.

One positive thing which has happened is that I’m in the midst of exploring some positive options and developing some projects which might fly. The depressed pragmatist in me says this dream too will get killed. But the hopeful optimist points out that, like with the package I pulled together for the Day Jobbe-related opportunity, even if this prospect doesn’t work out, I now have viable marketing packages for three writing projects that I will not need to modify too much to send out elsewhere.

But…I am also extremely angry at my government’s leadership and a President who seems determined to shaft people my age and younger.  My parents and my much older siblings had and have decent retirements. It is not looking like I will have much of a retirement, if any, ahead of me. My spouse might, since he’s just old enough to slip past the worst of it, but it’s unlikely as there are circumstances that will entangle both of us and drag us down. Yeah, I know I blithely assumed this would be the case when I was younger. But facing that reality is pretty damned stark at this point. I knew the poisoned cup would get around to me. That knowledge doesn’t ease my resentment, now that I’m facing it, especially when I read chirpy accounts from various retirees who will not face what I am going to face.

I want a President with the cojones to tell the current Republican leadership to bugger off and quit starving the beast, we’re taking care of our people. But he’s been bought and paid for. I knew this in 2008, but I had hopes that my worst fears were wrong. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll take the sop that the ACA threw us, but most of it is about screwing the 99% over in the long run. What really angers me is that I’ve seen this trend developing since the 80s, hell, I even wrote about pieces of it in the 90s for the Metrozine, but…I never tried to parlay it into something bigger.  See dreams died, dreams buried for that one.  There were reasons for not following up. Now I wish I had, and damn the consequences. Maybe things would have been better for more people if I had.

And part of the problem is that I have been extremely lousy at the sort of self-promotion that would advance my writing, that would advance my Day Jobbe career, that would advance me in a lot of ways. I have always been a girl who’s wanted to put my head down, do the work, and not fuss about promoting it. Guess who gets screwed with that attitude. In this modern era, it’s more important to blow your own horn than actually, y’know, do the work, and that ticks me off.


Not all is grumpy. Some good things that I can’t talk about have happened at the Day Jobbe, not anything that will personally advance my career but things that confirm for me, deep in my heart, that my particular approach to sped teaching is the right one for this group of kids. I’m growing and developing there, and that makes me quietly happy even in the midst of things that make me angry and despairing. Part of teaching is that the teacher needs to be learning from the students and boy, has this ever been a year where I’ve learned from the kids.

I had a nice con at Norwescon, despite unrelated drama, and had much-needed interaction with my favorite tribes of writer people. I came home with a little dragon pet, Little Draco, who’ll get his own little blog at some point (no, I’m not normally a dragon person, but I have two dragon bracelets and Little Draco, who sits by me while I write and goes on my stick shift when I drive to work. Clearly they called to me.  Why, I don’t know. I’ve only written one very sarcastic dragon story).

I’m also quietly happy about the other projects because hopefully they’ll pay off. If not where they are now, then somewhere else.

I’m happy about the package I put together for the Day Jobbe opportunity. I am humbled and honored by the praise I got and realize that what I do does matter to someone besides me.

And the ski boot issue may have finally gotten resolved, just in time for the end of the season (sigh).

So there are good things amongst the shadows.  It’s just hard to see the glimmers of light through the curtains of darkness. And with that, it’s back to work, before I leave for the Day Jobbe.

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Filed under Netwalk Sequence, personal life stuff, whining

Ugh. Somehow I expected better with weather heat transitions

So I thought that losing all this weight would help me deal with sudden transitions in PNW temperatures during the summer.


Yesterday we had a rapid swap from cool and damp to sunny, humid and warm (80s Fahrenheit).  I had plans, including taking in a yoga class at a new studio, working on the novel, and other things.  I took DS to the doctor’s office to start up the new medication (Humira).  We came home, I realized it was too late to get started at a new yoga place, so I ate lunch and began work on novel revisions.  My office is in the back of the house, which gets hotter during the day than the front.  Despite all of my preventatives, it got warmer.

I finished the rewrite section, then started walking around the neighborhood to do my errands.  Halfway through, I started feeling sick.  Ruh-roh.  Came home, did chores, and then collapsed, feeling shaky and sick, my gut cramping and showing all the other symptoms of heat problems.  Damn.

It doesn’t appear to have lasted very long.  I did the smart thing, remained hydrated throughout, and simply faded onto the bed and read a book.  Well, two books.  Today, the lingering result is a little bit of fatigue and a little bit of gut spasm.  Fairly typical.

But this is dang annoying.  I’ve never been good at quick weather transition changes from cold to hot.  In the past this difficulty might have been attributed to weight.  But considering I’m pretty much at where someone of my age and height should be (by one calculation I’m probably at 7.1% body fat with a BMI of 20.9), that’s not a factor now.  So the issues run deeper than that.

Part of the problem is that I am such a stereotypical Northern white girl in body type that it isn’t funny.  Born strawberry blonde, now bottle redhead.  Burn easily, stay pale compared even to other white folk.  Much over an hour in direct sunlight early in a hot summer, and I start feeling shaky, upset gut, and light-headed.  Even later in the summer I have to pace my exercise and seek the shade.  Needless to say, I’ve never been a sun worshiper.  For me the sun really is a bright hurty thing.

It doesn’t work that way in winter.  I can caper all over the slopes on a bright sunny ski day in temperatures below freezing and, as long as I’m properly layered up, I do fine.  As long as the temps stay below 50 degrees F I’m pretty good–heck, I’m good even up to the low 70s.  But 80 degrees F and above?


Humidity is also a factor, as are allergies.  I do better in hot and dry (though not in Las Vegas three digit temps, BTDT.  No.  Freaking.  Way.  Even with AC).  Hiking in Tucson on a warm winter day brought on the beginnings of heat issues and humidity and allergies weren’t raging then.

Grr.  It’s annoying.  Clearly I’m a creature of the Pacific Northwest, especially the wet side.  Looking at a temperature map of the past spring, what area’s been below normal for temps and above for wet?  Yep.

Oh well.  Eventually we’ll get past the see-saw temperatures and settle into a warm pattern.  After a week or so my body will adapt and I can resume an active life without worry, as long as I wear a hat, take frequent breaks in the shade, and don’t sit out in direct sunlight.  It’s just freaking annoying that I can’t use weight loss as a solution.

Of course it wouldn’t be this easy.  Of course.

And, of course, I own a horse who loves this hot weather.  Damn.

(And, please, I’m not really needing advice.  This is a grumble, not a request for advice.  I’ve tried a lot of things, and I still can’t get past the initial reaction to heat.  We do have AC in this house, temperamental as the damn thing is.  I stay hydrated.  I’m careful with what I eat, though in retrospect I suspect I ate too much fatty food yesterday which contributed to my issues.  Still, this is a regular pattern and trust me, I’ve tried a lot of stuff.)

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The best-laid plans….

I started feeling blah yesterday.  It wasn’t for any obvious reason other than the typical February doldrums.  No reason to feel down about Valentine’s Day, no reason to feel down about work stuff because I was in the same place I’ve always been every mid-February–piled on higher and deeper with work.  And of course I had too much to do outside of the day jobbe, but again, that’s February for you.  What else is new?

Well, I got a call from DS that there were some house issues going on.  Deep sigh.  Got home, figured out the gutters needed to be cleaned, and DH might very well be late getting home.  So I took a deep breath, pulled out the extending ladder, and started working on gutters.

Our house is a one-story, thankfully.  BUT.  It’s a long one-story house, shaped somewhat like a L.  Gutter cleaning in the best of situations takes a good forty-five minutes, and this was a winter evening.  Post-sleet.  Post-several days of hard winds.  We don’t get leaves here as much as we do needles from the various Doug firs near the house…and boy, were those gutters full.

The good news was that I got the gutters clean.  And I realized that I had a nasty cold sore brewing which had contributed to the overall feeling of malaise I was experiencing.  So I had reasons.  But still….bleh.

I will be so glad when February’s gone.

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February doldrums

Every year I seem to forget that February is a grim and dreary month.  Doesn’t matter about the number of bluebird ski days I get, February is still grim and dreary.  I get blindsided by IEPs at work, the kids are sinking into midyear grumpiness and behaviors and start blowing out, there’s usually at least one house/car/health issue and….stuff.

February.  Yuck.

This year, too, instead of taking a quick trip to the Tri-Cities for Radcon, I’m staying home.  It’s a good thing I had already planned to do this because I discovered that as union vice president, I need to run an election and the two days I would have been gone for Radcon would have interfered majorly with it.  There’s a major rally planned at the State Capitol for President’s Day and I need to go to it.  I have a certification test to prepare for.  I have an e-book MS to prep for.  IOW, while Radcon would have been a welcome sanity break, it would have piled on the stress in spades.  I would have needed to cancel and felt awful about it.

Not that this particular upcoming three-day weekend will be much of a break (see election, see paperwork, see certification test, see rally).  But at least I’ll get in skiing, I won’t be up late and doing panels, and I’ll get in more time working on the writing stuff.

Sometimes stress reduction is in the small stuff.  And this is one of those times.

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Bleargh. Monday!

Some weeks just need to go away.  This is going to be one of those weeks.  I look at my work schedule and cringe.  There’s just no way on earth I’m going to get everything done, much less be inspirational, creative and effective with students, and cope with being sick, a sick spouse, plus everything else in my life.  Can I just run away?

Faugh.  Monday blues strike yet again.  Between low snow levels, travel and sickness, I’ve not skied for almost a month.  Being sick kept me from seeing horse last week, and my schedule effectively screws it up this week as well.

Oh well.  I will suck it up and somehow find a way to get it all together.  If I play my cards right, this may well be the week that turns things around for me in many ways.  Or not.  That’s the tough piece, I don’t know if this is the week that things will turn around at last and be positive.  I would like to think so but I really just won’t be able to know until Friday gets here.  One thing I realized after a miserable, down-in-the-dumps, self-pitying Sunday is that once I just started moving and doing stuff, even in sick doing stuff mode (which means–slow, with stops to rest), miraculously, things started happening.  I think the problem for me right now is that I have so many balls spinning in the air that it is hard to see even incremental progress as progress until I’m done doing stuff for the day.

As it were, I managed to check off some big to-dos on my list.  My office actually is the least cluttered it’s been in ages.  Piles of stuff either got put away or recycled.  I have work spaces, I have discrete tasks to work on this week, and I can look around and see what has to be done and find things.

Now I just have to do this at work.  That’s a whole different story that makes me start to hyperventilate at the simple thought of it.  But I will do my best to make that happen as well, in spite of massive piles of crazy coming my way.

Deep breaths.  It’s survivable.  This, too, will pass.  It just looks bad on this side of the week.  Soon enough Friday will come and I’ll collapse in relief.

It’s just the getting there that will be nuts.


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