-Mobile continuation from Xanga blog PinkyGuerrero, this blog is PinkyGuerrero, ongoing continuation at blogs Pinky & Janika & Basically Clueless & PinkFeldspar, in that order.
-Most of the graphics and vids click to sources.
-Personal blog for Janika Banks.
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Friday, September 30, 2016


Flashback Friday!

The very last dog I owned was back around the mid '90s, a puppy I picked up from the side of a very rural highway along with 3 other dumped puppies, all of them very different and no house in sight for miles either way. I live in a big puppy mill area, so that one wasn't hard to figure out. This one singled himself out from the rest immediately, instead of crying in the back seat was standing quietly wedged along the door frame between my window and the back of my seat so he could see out, very easy to see he was intelligent and had a steady nature about him. I was on my way to my mom's house, so when I got there I called around to ask if anyone had any dog food, big no on that, but my sister had a frozen heart from a calf or bull they'd butchered. Those poor pups must've have been so utterly starving, they really worked on that giant heart that was as big as they were for a solid hour, actually made some progress since it was hot out and it thawed as they worked on it.

All of the puppies looked like halvsie breeds instead of mutts, like one was obviously part St. Bernard and my brother's girl fell in love with it, another was part German Shepherd, so my dad wound up with it, the 4th part black lab, but I already had dibs on the white one by the time I got them all out of the car. He turned out to be a natural pointer, about the size and build of a bird dog but colored so differently than people are used to that I heard "Oh, what a pretty Dalmation" a lot. This dog was NOT a Dalmation. He was a Pointer and started snapping into a natural point when he was still a puppy. When he was tiny he looked exactly like the RCA puppy.

I named him Rinehart after a hobby pilot my dad knew who used to buzz our house on Sundays, because he's colored a bit like Snoopy and I connected those dots. Rinehart was the smartest and funnest dog I ever met in my life, integrated very well into family, behaved splendidly in the house (never once jumped up on furniture or clawed a door), and very vivacious when allowed off the long clothesline chain Scott rigged up for him so he could run back and forth across the entire back yard, which is fairly big. He had a hard time figuring out frisbees, though. He loved them, but insisted on carrying them upside down so that they were flipped up in front of his face, and he'd have to run weirdly sideways peeking around it.

He went through the usual bad doggy stuff. Made a gift basket from Rinehart for the neighbor after he chewed up a corner of their sunlight window in the roof of their ground home. Took off roaming a few times and dragged home beaten half to death by a farmer or head swelled up from a snake bite kind of thing, so we learned to keep him on the chain or keep him very busy playing with us. He loved howling with ambulance sirens in the distance, and I was once very startled to hear that again one day after he died.

The really sad thing about puppy mill dogs is that they often have genetic problems, and Rinehart got the hard luck out of all the puppies I rescued. Before he was even a year old he started stumbling a lot, and a vet confirmed his cervical disks had already started fusing with a severe arthritic condition. By the time he was two he'd been on daily anti inflammatory meds for severe arthritis for over a year to help keep him active, and by the time he was three the vet was having me keep him doped solid on pain pills for horses. He spent his last year high as a kite and active right up to the end until it suddenly all stopped just before he'd have turned four, and a vet confirmed kidney failure. I asked for the sleep shot and went home and cried for days. I had never cried over a dog before in my life, and I've never had another dog since. What I usually don't add is that I've spent my adult life on meds for a very painful condition myself, and having this dog in particular around while I was home alone sometimes too ill to do much during autoimmune flares was what kept me going while Scott worked 10-12 hour days and the kids were in school. It was also the toughest part of our marriage, and the dog gets full credit for holding us all together during a couple of really rough years. Scott took it personally when I had Rinehart put to sleep and couldn't speak to me for awhile.

A few really interesting things happened with this dog that I'd never seen before. Scott and a crew built this house on previously unbuilt on land, but we had so many weird things happen that we called the house haunted and even said maybe an old Indian spirit was hanging around. We'd hear the door open and someone walk in several times a week, or glass breaking that was so realistic that we'd search the house for broken glass. Many times we heard a radio and would scour the house for any kind of tech left on. The neighborhood we're in is spread out along a flint ridge, and most of the neighbors were gone during the days, and most of this stuff happened in broad daylight during the days. One day I was taking a nap on the couch, Rinehart was sound asleep on the livingroom floor, and the stairs behind me woke us up sounding exactly like someone was coming down the stairs. Rinehart growled with every hair on his back up and stared at a spot on the stairs past me where the sound stopped, and I told him, "It's ok, it won't hurt you, go back to sleep" and he instantly let it go and we both went back to sleep. Before that I never had any real validation that it wasn't all in my head.

Yes, I miss my dog.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

blue rabbit

click to take a beautiful tour through a stained glass art gallery
There are days I think my stories really aren't that big a deal, maybe I'm just making a big deal out of nothing, and I kind of walk away and go do something else for awhile. And then another day comes along, like last night watching Blindspot, Roman asking Jane if she remembered the rabbits they were given as children to take care of and then told to kill, and how he wimped out and couldn't do it but she could, how she always had it in her to get the job done. And I'm thinking Ok, not only does that validate my own childhood story, but mine trumps it 100% because of other stuff, so if that doesn't make me a badass coming off childhood trauma, I don't know what does, and that was just one little incident in story after story after story that leaves every professional I've talked to cringing.

I have such a disconnect that I don't realize the impact I have on people. When I first shared my rabbit story with a beta reader, I didn't even think to caution first. This whole project I'm wanting to launch first before anything else will necessarily have to be labeled with trigger warnings galore.

I was talking privately to a friend about something this week and suddenly realized I was way out of my emotional depth again and quickly tossed out how severe my disconnect is and I'm not sure how to relate, even though I obviously have no problem engaging and understanding. Despite having to continually shut down this weird hyperawareness I have of people around me, I cannot feel some of it. It's like having a sort of numb empathy. I'm still struggling with how to express this because it's crucial as part of the journey I'm sharing about what it's like in the mind of an aspie child on to adulthood.

I've attempted to communicate this description in a couple of my Lexx posts regarding the undead character Kai. I've studied in depth what research I can find (actually extremely detailed) about programming people via break and rebuild and how that creates the disconnects needed for people to be able to handle doing some really horrific things without falling apart. I've super briefly mentioned in passing a few times over the last couple of years that I believe this is what happened to me as a child via 'natural' societal brain training and culture clashing held firmly together with rigid belief systems, and how this is ideal for mass enculturing future citizens.

Aspienado is the East Wind, as Mycroft fondly taunts poor Sherlock with.

The interesting thing, to me anyway, is that I'm no longer angry. I'm done with the anger part. I'm in the more practical, even heuristic part of all this discovery now. Having actually experienced this life has lent so much more depth to learning concepts that any amount of mere research could never aspire to. It's one thing to make statements based on opinions based on what others report, it's another to make statements based on experience.

I know I bring up Sherlock a LOT, but I can't escape that the rabbit they're looking for is named Bluebell.

click for an incredible hint
That's actually beside the point, but the entire Sherlock thing was perfectly timed with my pinata cracking open and all the jeweled candy flying out, and the blue rabbit is just one of the jewels I'm sorting through.

One of the most interesting conundrums I've run into, and it happens quite often, is talking to people who don't realize they've been traumatized. Children are very easily traumatized, especially if there is already an emotional and/or neurodiversity schism in the family (including mental illness in either or both parents), and so many of us have been taught to suck it up and be tough that it takes years of gentle excavation into a person's psyche to finally help them see they've so plastered over a traumatic event that undid them that even they can't see how traumatizing it was until they finally break through and then have nervous breakdowns. Or sometimes the breakdowns come first, and then it's all about sorting out the stuff that flew apart. All those sparkly memories...

The human brain is very good at systems recovery, for the most part. There are so many ways a human being can continue to seemingly function, and even function well, despite having gone through trauma that would easily break someone else who grew up sheltered and never learned all the little tricks for self protection. This is so common that the people who have developed these tricks actually take pride in them, and sneer down on the weaker ones who fall apart over more trivial nonsense. After all, what is dropping an ice cream cone on a sunny day compared to being horrifically abused in a very dark place with no rescue?

My blue rabbit wasn't exactly abuse. In fact, I'll vouch for it being the most absolutely brilliantly 'innocent' abuse ever invented. I will make a case that this perpetual breaking down and rebuilding machine that is society goes so far back that we think it's part of our group psychological health, and that the very people who shun 'bad' things themselves perpetuate the ability for bad things to keep existing.

I completely broke one sunny day somewhere in the first grade. I didn't cry. I didn't understand enough to cry. But I can go back now over all the moments floating through my tiny head and see that I went into a sort of permanent shock. I grew up without a single emotional connection to a single adult around me, including my parents, and it wasn't because they were mean. It was because they'd already been broken themselves.

The beta reader wasn't able to talk about it very much except to relate that it was extremely upsetting, just a few words telling a childhood story. The odd thing was that even writing it, I barely felt anything, but I somehow knew it was important. That was the first time I shared it with anyone, and now, just from that one reaction and talking to my psychologist and a couple of other people and loads of thought afterward, I can see that what I'll be sharing goes far beyond simply growing up autism spectrum in a rigid world.

I'm so glad I never got that published yet. I'm at this *wow* place where I can see a whole bunch of crucial plastering I still hadn't peeled down yet.

Ok, back to my day. I just did a retweet spam of last night's Benny C Pink Floyd crash (yeah, right in the middle of this, thanx @bonenado).

Yeah, that #bencongruity was exciting, ok, moving on. Back to my own little world.

mishaps & mayhem series- Oct 2008

A continuation of my Throwback Thursday series. These tidbits come from private blogs on random days through October 2008. I think I got most of the font sizing problems fixed. The server migration mangled the original html into a 'kit' and to go through every line of that just to fix the sizing took a bit of intense scouring.

Note- this got really long, but it's useful for seeing how far I've come since then being public with Asperger's and dealing with all the depression and spoonie stuff over time. 2008 is the year I decided to start healing instead of feeling trapped. Also, there are chicken pix.  photo hyper.gif

Not sure where to even start.

I have declared myself in 'emergency emotional shut down' mode.  Had a very long talk with Scott last night, had a good conversation with the psyche guy today about it, and I'm implementing a real plan now that will be closely monitored by Scott and my psychologist.

... Lot of deleted stuff.

It's one thing to text my daughter through the middle of Ike going over her head.  Other than that, the majority of texting I do is with Scott when he's at work.  Extra emergency texting is understandable, and didn't even come close to the limit.

It's another thing to have.....  It's that kind of thing jerking me out of a deep sleep multiple times .... that finally brought me to my knees.  All these years with ....., all the years in an abusive relationship with ....., all the challenges I have, and even my only biological child in harm's way with Ike- I caved to none of that the way I have finally caved to ....'s continual hammering.

So evidently Oct 2008 is when I finally broke and started cutting off contact with a lot of people.

I WILL make it through this.  This is the aspie getting mean and tough and continuing to climb the mountain.  I WILL reach a good place again, and when I get there, I will be emotionally healthy and ready to once again be the person who helps take care of things.  But for now, I am a wild thing in the wild woods.  I am the cat who walks by himself, and all places are alike to me.

And that is the Bluejacky tagline.

Spent some time with the chickens yesterday, and while Scott was going in and out of the pen door, sure enough, a bee flew right in his face, and sure enough, he nearly fell backward over one of those big rocks.  Perfect!  So I said he'd booby trapped the place fabulously, if we ever had problems with someone breaking in, all we'd have to do is lure them to the chicken pen and have them trip and break their heads open.  Made a BIG impact.  After some brain storming, he came up with the cool idea to create a stone walkway, like you see people do in paths through their yards.  So he went to Walmart today after he dropped me off at the psyche guy, found a pallet of molded stones that was nearly sold out, and the guy sold it to him for half price just to get rid of them.  So he's going to lay them all down on top off the wire sticking out across the ground (that the big river rocks are currently holding down), and it's going to look really nice.

What you just read is me finally getting a few real handicap considerations around my own home from a spouse who was determined his denial could stop it from coming. And yeah, I really yapped that day, that's still from one post. You didn't see all the stuff I chopped out.

Let's see.  I'm hitting the jackpot.  Scott had a little spare cash after the trip, plus he won the big fantasy baseball league at work, which is netting him $400, and if he stays on the 'big board' through the football playoffs and wins *crossing fingers* he'll get another $300 later.  So a little here and there spent on me right now is kinda fun.  I've lost all sense of linear time, one of my big aspie problems, so whatever comes out, comes out.

I told Scott I sure would like to get another battery operated cookie press for Christmas, since my old one croaked off from battery acid corrosion (bad me, forgot to take out the batteries and left it sit for a year), so we looked online and found one for $39.99 before shipping.  Figured we'd look around Springfield at Sears and stuff, no one had battery operated in stock, said they'll get it in for Christmas.  Same with the outlet stores in Branson.  This happened over a two day period, there is no way I could have done both towns in one day.  One of the outlet clerks told us to try this and that, so we wound up at another outlet called Housewares Outlet, probably would never have gone in there if she hadn't said to try it.  BINGO.  And not only bingo, but ***BINGO***.  Walked outa there with what looks like a more powerful one (takes 2 C's instead of 4 A's), but also had more gadgets shown on the box.  $11.98 after the 20% storewide sale.

I have no clue where that thing is now. I think it croaked off really early on, which was probably why it wound up in an outlet store.

It's funny how cell phones have really changed how we interact. "You didn't answer." "Well, I was flouring chicken and had to wash my hands. You didn't leave a voicemail." "I thought you'd call back." "You're the one calling, if it's important, why didn't you leave a voicemail?" -or- "I've tried calling back 3 times and YOU didn't answer." "I was talking to someone else." "So instead of waiting for me to call back, you immediately called someone else and ignored me while I'm trying to do something one handed."

And that was just one person. Btw, just an offhand observation- social media has NOT helped fix this one little bitty bit. I finally realized I'm not everyone's butler that has to jump when my phone goes off.

@ 8:45 a.m.

Stripped the bed, got wash going.  Loading pics.  Yesterday Scott mentioned to me during football that he's a genius, and I asked why, and he started describing how he figured out how to back up the pickup so it would be level for the ladder, and inside I'm cringing and going 'oh, no...'  Normally Scott just does things.  If he has to mention them to me (I have come to learn), he's a little worried that there is a slight 85% chance he'll go splat and I won't find his body for a couple of hours, so he gets me interested enough to want to go see what he's doing, and then I take the camera and a chair so I can witness what a genius he is/the accident and call 9-1-1.  So this was our exciting conquest yesterday.  And I told him, yes, he is a genius for not winding up listed in the Darwin Awards.

This was my first look out the screen door.

First impressions are always good.

The truth about the slope...

This is how *real* men brace loose ladders on slopes.

The top of the roof is 3 stories off the ground if the ladder falls to the left, but the height of the ladder makes it 4 stories by the time it would hit the ground on a downward slope.  Of course, Scott would jump off long before then.

There goes a man with a drill.


I'm closing my eyes now.  photo 02.gif 

After Scott was all done and watching football again, he said he sure was tired for not having gotten much done, just one screw, a little tar, and fixing a drain hole.  I said yeah, that's why labor costs so much, you don't think about the guys spending an hour getting a truck and ladder level, hoisting a 150 pound rock into the bed of the truck to brace a dolly bracing a ladder, and risking life and limb...  It's so strange how his head works.

I really was not a very nice person in 2008.

 If the email title held any insinuation that we are still friends being there for each other, I was road kill a long time ago, and I think she's testing me again because she's bored.

At all. By the way, that wasn't anyone any of you are aware of, and neither is this next.

And the .... woman contacted me again, with obvious stick poking.  "Someone left a question in your comments", no details.  Guess I'll turn off comments again.  She's not the hall monitor for my comments.  It's annoying her that I haven't posted there since September.  She prods me when I go too long between posts.  I may wind up blocking her, too, if she gets uber aggressive on me again like she did last spring, but she's probably ten times worse than ....  She had so many email addresses and xanga aliases a few months ago that she kept jumping back and forth on and suddenly deleting that I caught on real quick she's one freaky chick.  So blocking her will probably only stimulate more activity around me.  I'm such a stalker magnet, what is it with these middle aged women?

And I realized first thing this morning I forgot a niece's birthday again, completely missed it.  Of all my nieces, I consistently miss *her*, and it's getting embarrassing.  I think she's 12 this year.  I have a card sitting around, I'm going to try to get it out tomorrow.

For realz, this next part.

I changed my mind about the post office thing.  We live in a very small community.  One year I ordered a leather Vikings jacket for Scott for Christmas.  The company who sent it was able to verify that it actually came through my post office, but it mysteriously disappeared before it was delivered to my mailbox.  The post master said it must have been stolen from the box, and totally covered for the delivery person, who coincidentally stopped working for the post office soon after.  But that box wouldn't have fit into my mailbox, it would have been brought to the house, so if someone stole it, they'd have had to walk up my drive in plain sight of the whole neighborhood and take it from my door, IF I hadn't been home that day.  I'm pretty sure the carrier just took the package home and sold the jacket on ebay.  It was worth $300.  So I'm a little paranoid about standing there putting a $10 bill into a birthday card and then handing it to someone to mail for me.  Some of the people around here wouldn't have problem one with ripping that right back open to get the cash if I didn't send it registered.  So I'm going to wait till Scott gets home and ask him for the money and just mail the card tomorrow.

Nothing like not trusting a mail carrier service. I never mail anything from my house, and I starting paying for tracking long before it became a service. I live in a nice neighborhood. Makes no difference. We intensely recycle and shred because people go through trash cans up and down the street. Nice people. You wanna know what living in nicer America is like in the Ozarks? Super paranoid and super jumpy. Anything 'burbs got nothing on us bcuz we alls gotz gunz....

And that's only a week in. I wonder if it gets better...

@ 3:45 a.m.

Have been up since 2:30 catching up on South Parks.  Don't really feel terrible, just too disrupted to sleep.  Had the craziest dream that I was trying to secure an order of onion rings for a guy in a weird techno-rodeo bar and one of the waitresses turned out to be an undercover NSA agent in a speedboat, and when I woke up, all I could think was how I needed to get something on my stomach, but NOT onion rings.

I guess that's what happens when you put nothing but a bowl of dry cheerios on top of a rumbly tumbly.

Scott came stumbling out soon after with a big toothache and some crazy idea that we should sue the physical therapist who first yanked on me and sent me into lupus flareup and a more than year long grind through pain and problems walking, so at 3 in the morning I'm going No, hun, I'm not going to ruin some little girl's life sucking up all her money while she's trying to raise kids and pay for her car and whatever.  So then he thought about suing (medical establishment) because here I am only 46 and walking like a crippled old person through Walmart, and I'm like yeah, can you just see us dragging into lawyers and courtrooms and dragging this out over the years and being so sick of it...

I come from Mennonites.  We're not into suing people.  If I get to the point where I'm really desperate, I'll relent and have the back surgery.  But it'll take a lot to get me to that point.  I've heard pros and cons from several people who've had back surgery, but none of them had the health complications I've got.

Went to the chiro yesterday and had mentioned how long it's been since this all started, that from what I'm finding, this apparent grade 5 internal disc disruption could easily have happened when the first PT girl yanked on me like an archaic blood letter from the dark ages without even looking at the MRI report about which lumbar it was, sending me reeling through crippling pain and lupus flareup, and from there snowballing on handfuls of drugs and finally finding the chiropractor and spending the year really sick and stuff, and he totally backed me up on it saying that's probably what happened.  She didn't know what she was doing and did some more damage, and he's certainly got a lot of stuff documented on me that is consistent with me saying that.

Guess I shouldn't have told Scott that.  Not looking forward to him obsessing about it again.

Ran into my neighbor working in his yard yesterday when I pulled in back home, stopped to talk because I was still holding a gallon of frozen blueberries for him from my sister's blueberry farm, plus I knew he wanted some eggs.  I told him I'm not into selling eggs, but I wouldn't mind a contribution toward feed.  He got a kick out of that.  Then we talked and he was telling me he went through this procedure on his back where they completely removed the cartilage between a couple of discs, but he was told the only way his back wouldn't fuse itself during healing was he had to stay physically busy, no desk job.  I told him I'm going with the premise that pain is an indicator to slow down so healing can take place, and that a torn nerve sheath in the main truck inside a disc probably would take awhile.  I have experience with how long nerves take to heal from the Bell's complicated with lupus, and I really can't see going into such a drastic surgery with all the complications I've got just to kill the pain and make me able to keep hurting myself.  Deadening pain isn't the same as healing.  Twink's older half brother just had his second back surgery where they irradiated nerve bundles (high risk for full body paralysis, had to keep him awake during the whole thing), and he's only 31.  Makes it easy for him to continue to hurt his back without thought, because now he simply can't feel it.

Also heard a commercial on the radio yesterday for One on One Body Works, this guy had tried everything for his excruciating back pain, including chiros and acupuncture, and in the end, an exercise trainer did the trick.  And that is EXACTLY what doctors and my chiro keep telling me, I've gotta do some strength training on my lower back.  So once this virus is over, I need to get back outside more with the chickens and keep moving around.  I've really backed off this week since the fox got the duck and I've just been keeping them penned up, and I'm having more pain and difficulty than usual, and I think the virus is accentuating the pain because viruses make you ache all over anyway.


And I really do feel like I am right on the edge of a nervous breakdown.  This is the year it all changes.  Being at everyone else's beck and call is over.  I was *SO* *SICK*.  I was looking back on the year before here. And I actually had a psychologist appointment on my birthday.  I look back on all that and just feel like weeping.  I was trying so hard to stay upbeat and nice about it all in my blog.  Now I feel mean.  I feel like if anyone gets in my way, watch out.  If I'm nearly having a nervous breakdown just over the phone ringing, stay behind the yellow tape and duck if you see rocks flying.  I don't know what's going on with me, but I'm betting I finally just came to my senses and got a grip on reality.  I'm aspie, I'm puny, and I don't have time for other people's crap.

Maybe this is the year I stop being a fool with blinders on.  I've spent the spring and summer working hard on learning how to think for myself through crisis, I've actually gone through severe withdrawal from 17 years' worth of hard prescription drugs all by myself without the benefit of rehab, and I'm handling illness and pain with solid nutritional values and clear thinking for the first time in my life.  No more 'friends' emotionally mooching off me while I'm the one lying in the ditch.  No more family demanding my immediate response to their dramas and traumas while I'm the one lying in the ditch.  No more doctors bungling around throwing pills and more pills at me while I'm lying in a ditch.  I'm crawling out of the stinkin' ditch, and if anyone even looks at me cross eyed, they're getting the claws.

Sometimes you just gotta get mean.


@ 1:45 p.m.

I feel so awful.  photo 14.gif  It's not terrible, it's not miserable, just awful.  I'm so tired and all my nerves through my whole body are ringing like coffee poured on a battery. ~BRZAP!~

Total comfort food for puny sickies.

Totally skipped a kiddo getting drunk for her 21st birthday and the big mess we dragged through over that. IF I'm still alive when Bunny either hits 21 or goes on her first big bender, whichever comes first, I'm going to totally rail whoever starts crap on her head after all the crap I went through as a stepmom on top of all the other crap going on in my life. Just saying. I will print out that story and hand it around to EVERYONE.

However, after that and a big load of other stuff I was going through with sibs (we were all very worn out with Mom on and off hospice over and over in the nursing home) I wrote this.

People want to have friends and be friends and have cool friendships like they see on tv, but it's always contingent on someone else playing their role properly.  Real friendship is like what I have with Scott and my Sploit and my sisters.  No one else tolerates me being blunt and honest.  They want to pretend and play 'house', like kids do.  We live in a Barbie doll society, and people like me don't play right.


Was laying awake in the dark with thoughts of the immediacy of local self aware consciousness providing an argument for not simply being a result of this universe evolving, but of more, and decided this was no way to handle a virus two weeks before I turn 47.  Actually two viruses.  Scott's mom came over briefly and told me I perfectly described her stomach thing, except she had no head/ears/throat thing, but someone else had the other and I was also describing it perfectly.  Bingo.  Always up to a good challenge.  Too bad I can't even have a hot toddy or something.

The deck has become the 'shop', which was otherwise another floor down in the basement.

We'll have to rent a dumpster for all this.  Scott should get done today, but then it's supposed to rain for at least two days, so it may be awhile before we get all this picked up.  At one point yesterday I heard a *THUMP* *thump* *thump* *thump*, and then silence, and I wondered if he'd gone rolling off the roof.  Waited a few minutes, then heard him walking again.  Found out later he'd dropped his tape measure.

There's my new 'porch' in front of the chicken pen.  I love it!  Originally had other plans for a trellis around the doorway with roses growing over it, but after the carpenter bees buzzing around that door all summer, forget it.

I'm documenting that this armadillo trap doesn't work.  They dig all along the planks right up to the trap, then turn around and go back down another plank.  But Scott's determined he's going to get an armadillo this way.

I was sitting here enjoying the cool morning and suddenly I heard "There's one!  Get her!", and dang if I didn't suddenly find myself getting all sticky with web string.  I stood up to go in, and I heard "She's taking off, you can do it, Ben, reel her in!"  Got inside and couldn't believe all the sticky all over me.  Never did see where the spider was.  Bet they're sitting in the pub right now talking about the big one that got away.

I'm going to stop emailing ....  Well, I'll still contact my next sister down.  It's like Scott was saying at lunch- years ago people didn't have computers and cell phones, and years before that there were no phones at all.  If you didn't live close by, you just didn't hang your life on them.  You just dealt with your own stuff your own way.  He's right.  I've said what I needed to say, I'm done, and I'm letting it go.  We really don't email a whole lot in the first place, but I'm just going to stop now.

100% humidity, only 63 degrees, can't get the air conditioning to come on...

Going to try getting back in the swing of going outside 2-3 times a day.  Just took a big load of leftover Mexican food to the chickens, and an anniversary card to the mailbox.  Solid fog out there, supposed to rain later.  Feels like almost 80 degrees to me.  Or maybe I've got a little fever, I don't know.

Have more leftovers, too, need to clean out the fridge.  Scott's not a leftover guy, and I wasn't able to help much with soup and stuff, even though I really didn't cook much this weekend.  So the next load to the chickens will be cornbread and what's left of ham and beans and sausage soup.  Hope that pumps up a few egg machines out there.  I looked up Speckled Sussex, they start laying around 6 months, and we're right on 6 months now, so I'm ready for Bean to get moving on that.  I have no idea if Spencer will start laying at all.  Brown Leghorns are supposed to be "excellent layers of white eggs", but she's such a bundle of nerves that I think stress is holding her back.

Dooney and Macy keep pumping them out, but poor Dooney is having personal problems.  She still cries pathetically when she lays, and one day the shell was covered in fresh blood.  She's super hyper (California White is a leghorn crossbreed), and she eats like she's starving all the time, so I'm wondering if she has a metabolism problem from the high production breeding.  I've decided that she's not getting enough fats in her regular chicken diet, so I'm stepping up the scraps, which normally contain odds and ends like a little sour cream and butter, plus she probably needs more carbs and proteins than the others.

I'm not a chicken nutrition expert, but I was friends with a woman some years back who was born with a super high metabolism glitch, and she would have to eat about 5 times the amount a normal person would just maintain being a size 7.  They discovered this as a baby, and had to double (thicken) the formula in her bottle just to keep her from starving.  I'm wondering if Dooney might have a similar problem and is somehow nutrient starved.  I figure more fats in her diet will help with her nerves and her soft tissues being stretchy while she's laying eggs.  So far so good, no more bloody eggs.  She's my top machine right now, never misses a day, so I want to make it as easy as possible on her.

Macy laid a perfectly round tiny little egg one day.  This is next to her regular eggs, which right now are a store sized small.

Not sure if Jaizzy's feeling a little rough.  I was thinking she might be getting a little arthritic some months ago, puts all her nutrients into those gigantic eggs, and I thought keeping her in to rest during all this roofing mess would perk her up this weekend, but she's starting to skip eggs, and she's sitting back on her 'ankles' now when she eats.  (What chickens actually stand on would be the balls of our feet to you and me.)  She had a terrible scare last week, a Great Pyrenees was standing at her pen trying to figure out how to get in.  (Where the f* do these dogs COME from?!?!?!?!?)  I think stuff like that really takes it out of her, and she's just miserable the rest of the day recovering from the shock.  That thing was huge, had to come up to my waist.  I yelled at it, and it just stood there and looked at me.  The day before that was a purebred brown boxer, straight out of an AKA manual.  It's like October hit, everyone's dogs are loose again, and I'm seeing new breeds coming through now, and we live on a dead end street with less than 25 houses in the area.  I want my own little 22 rifle.  This BB gun is stupid.  The ONLY dog I trust on this street is the Doberman across the road.  She's been professionally schooled, and she doesn't come in my yard or bark at me when I go to my mailbox.  None of the other loose dogs have any kind of identification or rabies tags or anything.

I guess I'll have to be proactive and draw another boundary.  Next time we get a community letter in the mail, or if I find one laying around here, I'm going to give the community prez a call and have a little chat about being physically disabled, using a chicken hobby for emotional health, and uncontrollable dogs that I can't identify or call owners to come get.  I think we'll have a talk about getting some kind of authorities involved if I feel threatened again in any way on my own property, and I'll also discuss my legal rights to shoot whatever wanders across my property, especially in back of my house, since we are not within city limits.  I'm not going to be mean or pushy, just informative and clear, so this person will be able to alert other community members to this problem and possibly define owner responsibilities and legal issues in the next meeting or newsletter.  One of the many perks of living in a chartered 'community' is that we actually do have to follow rules and regs.  If we owned farms this would be different.

I've been debating all day over whether to put my Duck Lords blog on sabbatical again.  I'm tired.  Maybe I can just put it all here for awhile and then transfer it over later next spring catching back up or something, like I did last spring.

Have also been thinking about sitting out with my chickens more.  The other day I was in the pen talking to my sister with a paper plate in my hand, and Spencer flew up right onto my arm trying to get to what was on the paper plate.  It was a disaster because one foot landed on the plate and bent it, so she flopped back off, but I thought Hey, if *Spencer* will fly up onto my arm...  Gee, she's my 'freak-out' chicken.  They've all gotten so tame since the duck disappeared, maybe I can hang out with them and get them to do things with me.

I wrote Chickens Being on my Bluejacky blog, it's still public there so I'm not going to copy it. I use that POV when I think about humans. It's pretty short and honestly probably one of the deepest things I've ever written. If you're on mobile you might have to turn it sideways to see it, the server move messed that up. I believe I get these dream revelations for a reason, and that they are important.

This was also about the time I tried vlogging. Those are gone now. It was a weird experiment and point blank, I'm not a natural talker unless something or someone gets me rolling. Then I don't shut up. Several people have asked me to start vlogging again, several others have asked if I'd do hangouts or live streams, and I'm fine with it, but I need some kind of actual committed assistance. Me doing all the work won't cut it unless I have something motivating me, and most of y'all know I could care less about anything but analytics, chickens, spaceship stuff, and food.

How in the world did pioneers live with infections like this?  Maybe this is where all those weird remedies spring to life, with impacted glands and throbbing ears.  Here, try this syrup of toxic something.  Not better?  Well, here, try this tincture of weird mineral salts and horse dung.  Worse?  Here, get drunk on this whiskey and try rubbing onions on your neck and make a concoction with a dead crow's foot in it.  Ah, now we're getting somewhere.

@ 8:30 a.m.

Two days till my birthday.  Despite being ill and trying to stay out of the mess next door, I'm still in good spirits.  It's another gloomy morning, one of those weird mornings where even the crows are being quiet.  Everything feels somber.  The chickens must feel it, too.  They are standing stock still like statues, like they're waiting for something to happen, and it never does.  I hope it thunderstorms, but it's not nearly black enough out there for what I have in mind.

Broadband has been on the blink again since yesterday.  Might go sit on the deck for awhile.  Don't feel abuzz like yesterday.  Hard to feel abuzz when you can feel all your cranial bones and every millimeter of sinus tissue.  Have cracked all the windows, the cool fresh air feels really good.  I should put my robe on and go outside and stare at the trees.

@ 8:45 a.m.

Ok, that was a lovely experience.  The neighbor on this other side is tarring his driveway.  The hot tar smell taking over the woods far and wide about made me nauseous.  I think I'll decline to make eggs available for him for awhile.

I never wanted to live around 'rich' people.  I know these people aren't really ~rich~, but they are retired and seem to have money to throw away on anything they want.  That guy tarring his driveway currently owns two houses in this subdivision.  When this house next to us came up for sale, he paid ~cash~ and just moved over, is now using the other one for storage.  The people in this house before him traveled extensively, had expensive hobbies and collections, and painted murals on the walls of their home and had big fancy neighborhood parties with lots of expensive wine.  The 'old' people up and down this whole street put thousands of dollars into their yards ~alone~.  They buy bird baths and water fountains, gazing balls and decorative bird houses, imported exotics, and fertilizers for lawns they mow with little machines that cost nearly as much as my car.  Some of the younger families are more normal, lawyers and doctors that move out here to raise their kids, but they buy into the same mind set and go after fancy dog breeds and home decor for all seasons- they elaborately dress the outsides of their homes in cornstalks and benches full of scarecrows, carefully arranged pumpkins and colorful mums that would survive a Martha Stewart checklist.  And these are just the outsides of their homes.  I can't even imagine the insides.

So Scott's family is firmly planted into the showy trenches of lower upper middle class, playing the right wing Christian game and hiding the mess that they are, and I am surrounded by a whole neighborhood of people who can't think outside boxes or imagine that the illusions they are creating aren't real, that they are only pastimes, ways to keep themselves busy so they don't have to think while they fuss over community pool fees and who hurt who's feelings among the officers on the community board every time someone gets excited with self importance over being treasurer.

I sit here wanting peace and quiet, surrounded by beautiful woods, barking dogs, tar trucks, trash trucks, propane trucks, construction trucks...  I've tried counting how many trash companies drive trucks through here.  There are at least 3 that I've identified, and I think Scott knows of a fourth.  We all get once a week service out here, but every day there are trash trucks bringing in the dawn, beeping around the ridges like weird modern dinosaurs, because everybody wants a different service than the other guy.  Same with the propane, never satisfied with one company, so tanks have to be switched out, new trucks show up and drive on the wrong lawns...  There is noise all day long from rich kids riding ATVs and motorcycles up and down the street, the guy across the road fixes boat engines and races ATVs so he has constant activity going from dawn till far beyond dusk, some guy across the ridge has a band and we can hear them practice clear over here with all our windows shut and the tv on, dogs bark relentlessly all day and night, and it's so strange how trapped I feel out here on this nice lot with a nice deck by the nice woods.  With 'nice' people...

I'm sure the trapped feeling is partly coming from feeling stuck and not able to go do stuff.

I really miss having store bought birthday cake...

The post that cake came from also contained this excerpt that I moved to public at flashback from 2008 on my chicken blog. Lots of chicken pix, and that was also when I got that video of Jaizzy eating a snake.

By this time I had been sick nearly the entire month, I'm leaving out so much stuff about how sick I was. 2008 was the worst year ever, and by 2009 I was so wiped out from illness and depression that I told both Scott and my psychologist it felt like I was dying, and I looked it, too. Sometimes strangers would think I had cancer just glancing at me. But I kept dragging back to the computer, writingwritingwriting, keeping myself company, and now I'm looking back so glad I did. I can see how far I've come. I feel so much better about where I am now when I look back and see myself fighting so hard.

Now I can look back at all this stuff knowing how my medical history turned out and see that the reason I was so sick all. the. time. was because I was living with undiagnosed diabetes and had just come through that CMV infection that I was lucky didn't kill me, and this right here is the beginning of all the terrible autoimmune allergy response starting to go out of control after my immune system was so compromised, and I was living in and out of autoimmune flare ups this whole time on top of all of it. Coming back from so much system-wide fail has been really hard. Diabetes is no joke, huge impact on everything else you go through, so never mock it. I look around at other people nowadays wondering how long they go before someone finally correctly diagnoses them, because diagnostic criteria for diabetes isn't about prevention at all, but about allowing a person to become so sick with it that it becomes very difficult to control once that threshold is reached. I'm still ticked that my ketones were noted by 2008 and this doctor never pursued why. I wasn't diagnosed until 2011 by another doctor, and by then my health was so abysmal that everyone thought I'd be crippled for life.

I feel terrible.  Glands and ears still griping, sinus congestion and what a headache, finished the Z-pack yesterday.  Wonder if I'll wind up on cipro next.  Tomorrow will be 3 full weeks since noticeable onset.  I keep reminding myself at least this isn't as horrible as the cmv last winter.  I hope I'm able to get the flu shot tomorrow.  Twink is still going through this, too, says kids and coworkers all around her are mucking through this stuff.  She wound up with such bad laryngitis that the doctor wrote her a note to get out of work and wrote a script for a special mouth rinse, like a benadryl-lidocaine-antibiotic cocktail.  Knocked her out cold the first time she used it.

The mighty hunter slept in till dawn, then got into the shower with his special no-scent body wash, then halfway through breakfast (a mighty hunter breakfast of fancy scrambled eggs with sausage and cheese) he decided he didn't feel like dragging out there.  So we went out and piddled with the chickens again.  Too cold and windy for them to find anything good, so we had them put back up after only 30 minutes.  Jaizzy will be staying in.  They're done except for checking for eggs later.  Now Scott is piddling around in the basement again, I'm going back and forth doing dishes, and we're waiting for the final last minute injured player list so we can fine tune our fantasy teams.

Mixed up a half batch of molasses cookie dough for Halloween cutout cookies this week.  Scott's fave cookies, lots of ginger and sorghum, good old fashioned flavor, easy to roll, ice, and decorate.  My birthday cake is only half gone, will probably throw the rest out.  It was good, but we're tired of it.  Got a little chicken out for Chinese tonight.  I'll make a bunch of rice for me and the chickens to munch on this week.

Don't know if it's the cold wind I keep going out in this week, but my favorite cranial nerve is having some fun.  My left eye has been twitching for a couple of days, tingles going around my cheek, lips and lower nose playing with on and off numb switches, eyebrow ridge itching.  So far I haven't had the stabbing ear pain (which has nothing to do with the ear infection, it's a nerve problem), but I have had a couple of brief spells of odors not being right and things tasting funny.  Ah, Bell's Palsy, the gift that keeps on giving.

I can't believe Tom Brady went into such a bad infection during his knee surgery.  See, THAT is why I want to avoid back surgery and why I'm dragging through all this slow motion healing stuff.  I'm too high risk for complications to assume everything will go without a hitch.

Better keep moving.

@ 10:45 a.m.

I'm such a klutz when cold weather hits and I get stiff.  Yesterday I opened a little container full of chopped green onion and somehow made it explode into a beautiful green onion shower that evenly dispersed across my entire kitchen floor.  Hundreds of tiny little onions.  They were rather indignant about being 'broomed'.  They are highly resistant to being pushed around.

Then just a few minutes ago I magically flipped a pan of water into a beautiful arc of spray that soaked my pants, my sox, the little rug in front of my sink, and the floor all around me.  How a pan of water can instantly transform into a spray of rain without any apparent effort only proves that the UK chick on myspace last year is right- I am a wizard.  I must learn to harness my powers for good.  photo 16.gif 

Maybe that's why my face is stubbornly getting fuzzier on me, despite all my attempts to make it stop.  All I need now is a pointy hat and a big stick.  And big bushy eyebrows.  I seem to be lacking there.  I haven't been able to get my eyebrows to grow right for years.

My fantasy team is already done for the weekend, no one playing tonight, and I lost miserably.  So now I'm 5-3.  Still at the top of the division and going to make it into the playoffs, though.  I can see why Scott gets so emotionally wrapped up in this.  I had Henderson for weeks, finally stuck him in reserve and what does he do?  He actually gets POINTS.  I worked my lineup big time for this weekend, my projections were through the roof, and I had top of the line players pulling in one point apiece.  Arg!!  Scott's was even worse.  His quarterback pulled in a minus 2...

Ah, yes, I remember the Nurse of the Corn... What a crazy one that was. She hated me.

I'm still too puny to get a flu shot.  photo 03.gif 

The nurse of the corn predictably let me know that there are '10-week viruses going around' and that 'zithromax cures only 23% of illnesses' (as if I were the stupid one for having been given the prescription over the phone in the first place).  I bit my tongue and didn't bother telling her that means absolutely ~nothing~ as a blanket statement.  Anyone can toss out numbers and never know what they are saying.  Antibiotics are handed out like candy nationwide, so *of course* they don't cure everything, and anyone who's had a statistics class (much less 3) could explain why that 23% is meaningless in light of a severe lack information regarding those illnesses, whether the antibiotic was actually finished, less than ideal reporting circumstances, and who is actually doing the reporting and whether they've skewed the results into, basically, a blanket statement for an agenda of some kind.  Most patients never even have follow ups, so I'd be curious to know where these numbers are coming from that she's tossing around.  And if someone's got a 10-week virus and she's got the goods on what the heck *that* is, I wouldn't mind the rest of her apparent knowledge about it, because she sure as heck didn't see my cmv coming last year, and then she flits out of the room with her nose up like I'm a complete waste of her time.  But I could tell she enjoyed gloating.  I've got bets on that she's a cat person.  People like me make her day.

Seriously, whoever invented this 'stressed out' mind set needs to curl up and die.

I won't say what that was all about, but I really do hear a LOT of that coming from other people over what I feel are fairly mild problems that people create themselves and then get all worked up about, and it just sounds so ironic that they're saying it to ME. It's so rare that I ever even say that.

Made it outside about an hour ago, let the girls out, happy happy joy joy.  Got a little warm as I was doing Jaizzy chores and took off my jacket, OH what a cow Jaizzy had.  That was just not *right*.  Not sure what's up her little tail feathers today, but she hasn't liked me ever since.  I sat out by the Quacker Dome in the shade (jacket back on, coolish breeze), and Jaizzy pretended not to even notice.  Usually she prowls her pen insanely jealous that everyone is out but her, today she ignored the whole lot of us.  Bean even jumped up in my chair with me, and Macy kept coming back by me to see if I had any new spiders for her.  There are hundreds of little baby spiders out there, found 3 crawling on me like little black dots.

So after about 45 minutes the girls all came back and were kinda hopping up and down going Where's our treats?  Where's our treats?, so I walked to the basement to get the uber cool paper plate of joy, sorta surfed back to the Quacker Dome skating on happy chickens, then went to let Jaizzy out.  Unlocked her gate, walked off, sat in my chair...

And she stood there on her door lintel refusing to step out, just looking at me.  I talked to her, told her come on out, and she walked straight back to her little house without even looking back.  I took the hint, folded up my chair and put it up in the Quacker Dome, shut the big door, walked to the basement, and right out she came.  I had a feeling...  So I must remember the social graces and never commit the ultimate faux pas again.  I wore that jacket last year, no problemo, but this year it's going to be a bad jacket now.  Green plaid with a black hood is ~bad~.  Don't flap it around the old lady and freak her out.  NOT cool.

@ 10 a.m.

Yep, Jaizzy's trough was cleaned out.  This time the chipmunks practically ran over my feet getting away.  I don't get why she'll attack dogs through the wire but won't chase off the chipmunks.  Anyway, she's all spooked again today, comes out of her house and races across the yard back in.  Air feels heavy, darkish clouds rolling in, vultures are migrating through... very Halloweeny.  Maybe it's not a good chicken day.

@ 11 a.m.

Boy howdy, those chickens ~knew~.  It dropped almost 15 degrees in the last hour, lightning and thunder, a weird grim glow off the autumn leaves...  I went out about half an hour ago because I wondered if I should just close Jaizzy back up, and she was in the pen waiting for me.  Tossed in a little bread, she said That's more like it, dismissed me like a waitress, and was very happy to stay in.  Then the kids got the rest of the bread and I closed up the Quacker Dome and made it in before the sprinkles turned to a cold drizzle.  And now?  A Halloween thunder shower, baby.

@ 11:30 a.m.

I can't believe the electricity is still on.  We've been getting hail and a total deluge for awhile, and there's this big severe thunderstorm warning right over me.  TV's out.  Can't believe I still had enough internet to get weatherbug.  So we went from around 70 to 55 in only a few minutes, had to put my big slippers on, drinking a little more coffee, sitting in front of the space heater.  Just peeked out.  Both chicken pens are lakes.  The back deck is soaked even with a roof, and there's no big wind.  Wow, did Jaizzy call it, or what?  I will never make fun of her again.


@ 6 a.m.

Made it up to 10:30 on the live Ghost Hunters.  It's getting so commercial and scripted now, and nothing like a tech bumbling right into Jason and Grant asking if anyone is there, could you please knock or something.  They heard a noise, jumped up to investigate, immediately ran into a guy with foot-long dreadlocks and a little cave light on his head, really spoiled the whole ambience from then on because I kept expecting them to run into other film tech people.  We kept making jokes over every little noise they heard, ~oh it's that guy~.  If it weren't for Steve freaking completely out about the bat/spider/something from hell that went into a crack in the bricks, I felt the show was a total bust.  The only thing cool that Grant came up with was an EVP telling them to get out.  Oh, and the ECW guy drove me ~insane~.  Good lord, what a self loving diva.  Oh, yeah, and the guy with the old timey British hat and scarf.  We were giggling so hard through every scene, it was more like a comedy than a ghost hunt, and very much an infomercial for other shows and dotcoms.  I think I'll skip the live show next year.  I've never missed one yet, so that's saying something.  And the people texting in with things they thought they saw in the background was so ridiculous.  They said they had over 200,000 'panic button' computer responses and text messages by 4 hours into the show, so you know that's just a big push for the SciFi network to prove they get more real time audience interaction than anyone else in the world.  That's what sells commercial time, folks.

The whole night was a real bust.  My niece came over to decorate the yard and get candy ready, and we got ONE set of kids, and that was Scott's brother's kids, and it wasn't even dark yet.  Nothing after that.  Nada.  We've never ~not~ had kids before, even on the worst years.  Scott snuck up the road because it sounded like a party somewhere, said there must be 20 cars lined up along the street, and cars that did come through only came up here to turn around, not trick or treat.  So my niece and I finally jumped in my car to drive around and see what the heck.  As far as I can tell, it was a very Baptist anti-Halloween get together, very obviously nothing at all trick or treaty looking, actually looked more like a militant tupperware party or something, very ku klux klanny in skirts and hair buns feeling.  So I drove on around the neighborhood, and talk about dead.  We've done Halloween for 15 years in this neighborhood, I've never seen the whole neighborhood so UNHalloween and uninviting.  It was like some kind of Halloween death knell had tolled, and all the houses were darkish and undecorated, as if there were no such thing.  How many years have I wished they'd get their stupid Halloween decorations out of their yards before Thanksgiving???  This year- *nothing*.  A couple of houses had *a* pumpkin out.  That was it.  So driving around you get the idea that NO one around here does Halloween, and then there's this huge nearly barricade of cars to have to drive single file through and hope you don't hit, no wonder people were giving up before they ever got to our house.  What a bummer.

I was so excited this year.  I've been looking forward to this because I've not felt well, my niece came clear over here from 60 miles away to hang out and have fun, and the whole neighborhood threw a bucket of ice cold water in our faces.  Talk about a let down.  But it was kinda fun sneaking around outside doing stealth reconnaissance and gathering intel.  And the homemade pizza turned out pretty good, and the giggling was fun.

And none of that lack of Halloween stuff was because of the weather, either.  Two hours, it was over.  Clear skies through the afternoon, temp back up a little.

@ 11:45 a.m.

Well, I guess Halloween really is over if the top news story is a family trick or treating together being gunned down by a guy in his 20's when they rang the doorbell...  Dang, some people are really ruining it for the rest of us.  Halloween was my last holiday.  I'm already burned out on all the rest and do my best to avoid them.


Back to today.

 photo smiliespider.gif

I gave away my waffle iron years ago, but I think I'm going to get another one so I can make birthday waffles out of cake batter for my birthday. I necessarily have to make my own from scratch with rice flour, and I obviously can't eat very much at a time since I'm diabetic, and waffles are so easy to break into parts and freeze back. Cool, huh? Plus I've never ever had a chocolate waffle. It's apparently on my bucket list because I've been thinking this out for awhile now. I've got about 3 weeks to make this happen.

Spent a little time this morning reinstalling security code on the tracker here. I've not had any problems yet (not counting someone in China hijacking my source code and that time GWT was hacked and shut down the day I was yanking all my access codes during a hit surge), but I'd really rather not play the 'I hacked your Google properties and want a ransom to get them back' game. I haven't mentioned a couple of alerts I got awhile back. If they get bad enough, I'll publish full page screen caps with location and ID asap all over my social media, give some of my lurker friends something to play with.

Day 10. How many times to we reset back to what it was like on day 7? *drumming fingers, rolling eyes* Yes, it's getting to me. I'm snippy. Just better not to talk to very many people when I'm like this.

In the meantime, dishes, laundry, yadayada. Lists...

Listening to my Pinkyween playlist.