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September 2nd, 2014


03:03 pm
On the plus side:

- It is kinda sorta autumn! A bit! The sky is overcast, the weather is cool, and I saw my first pomegranate at the grocery store.

- I am wearing a totally cute skirt with robots all over it. And it has pockets! It makes me very happy. I hadn't worn it in a while because it had a small rip in one of the seams, but I mended it this morning and it is wearable again, hurrah.

- This weekend, I made excellent food things. I made a coconut custard pie on Saturday that was amazing and is now gone, and yesterday I made these pickled grapes, which are completely delicious and really easy to make. Mine have only been pickling for about a day, so they don't have a whole lot of tang yet, but they're already great and should only get better as the flavors meld.

- Also, I bought a new coloring book and markers and spent several hours this weekend coloring and listening to my backlog of Thrilling Adventure Hour. It was pretty great. I may continue coloring this evening - I find it very calming.

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(2 crow calls | feed the birds)

12:36 pm
I am having a frustrating day.

So, a few months ago, I was asked if I would like to swap my Friday hours at Bainbridge for Friday hours at Kingston. Since I make more money at Kingston and also like working there better, I said yes.

At the time, I was under the impression that it would be a one-to-one swap - five hours in one place for five in another. Then I was told that I would have to give up one hour at Kingston, on Thursday, to make this work, which was irritating, but I'd be making more money while working less, so okay. But also, it took a very long time for anything to get officially confirmed, and all of this information trickled down a chain - admin to my manager to my supervisor to me - with me always the last to know anything about it, and often being given confused information by my immediate supervisor, who assured me that my manager would talk to me and make sure all the details were hashed out. That never happened.

Finally, they told me that my new schedule would go into effect on September 1st. So I came in this morning, as I always do. My supervisor appeared about 10 minutes later, said hello, and then said, "I don't think you're supposed to be here for another hour."

Turns out, I have lost an hour on Tuesday too, and no one told me. Admittedly, part of this is my fault for not checking my email last Friday, when the schedules were sent out. But also, I kinda feel like maybe, at some point, someone should have sat down with me and told me what the plan was, what exactly my new schedule would be, why they were working it the way they were. I feel like I've been left out of the loop on a matter than vitally concerns me, because everyone who should have been telling me what was going on has been assuming someone else was doing it. The whole thing has felt weirdly shady, since not being told information like this feels like someone is keeping things secret. And now I just feel stupid and pissed off about it, because it's not that they were keeping secrets - it's that none of them were organized or communicative enough to get the thing done properly.

I mean, I'm still okay with the arrangement, mostly. I don't like that I'm losing those hours, but I've pretty much made my peace with it. But I think I should have been told about the damned schedule change before the morning it started.

(Also, I hate being in the wrong place at the wrong time. It sets off my anxiety something fierce - I have multiple calendars wherever I am so that I can check that I'm where I'm supposed to be when I'm supposed to be there. Changing my schedule without discussing it with me upsets me a great deal, which is compounded my frustration at not being informed about what was going on with my job. So I am angry about that, and the anxiety kinda makes me want to cry, which is really not what I wanted for today.)

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(1 crow call | feed the birds)

August 29th, 2014


11:24 am
It is raining and I am going to wear a jacket to work, I am so excited!

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August 27th, 2014


08:54 pm
Things:

- This past weekend, my mother, sisters, and I went to Women's Own, which is Grown-Up Girl Scout Camp*. It was absurdly fun. The great thing about being at camp as an adult is that you get to do whatever you want. There were schedule events you could attend if you wanted and meals were always at a certain time but other than that, you get to figure out whatever you want to do and do it. We did various arts-and-crafts things, went swimming in the Hood Canal, did a little hiking, and spent most of Saturday sitting in a chair reading a book, which I haven't done for far too long. There was a camp fire and a talent show and a night we all dressed up in make-shift 1920's regalia to play bingo and roulette to win cheap-ass prizes. And everyone was friendly and helpful and welcoming, but willing to leave you along if that's what you wanted. We are already planning to go back next year and if you are a lady who lives in Washington and wants to go to Grown-Up Girl Scout Camp, I thoroughly recommend it.

- Also, I bought a gorgeous Girl Scout pocketknife in the camp store because I have always wanted a good pocket knife and it was beautiful and I am an adult and can buy myself knives if I want to.

- While at camp, I read about 200 pages of The Stand, which I haven't read in about 10 years. You guys, that book is still pretty great. Though of course I'm not quite sure if that's because it was definitely one of the Books Of My Adolescence. I read The Stand a lot as a teenager - it's one of those books I can point at and say, "That is where I learned this thing".*** It's not quite as scary as it once was, but the little creepy things remain very effective - the dead soldier with the soup in his eyebrows, those first few glimpses at Randall Flagg, "Come down and eat chicken with me, beautiful - it's so dark". (It's possible that I think that whenever I am in dimly-lit staircases.) I am unsurprised but a little ashamed to find that I still really identify with Harold Lauder in a lot of ways. Look, I was - am - a pretentious nerd and while I like to think that I wouldn't really go to the Dark Side, if you'd caught me at the right point in my lonely pretentious nerdgirl adolescence, I can't promise that I would haven't. Like Eleanor Vance, my identification with Harold is undeniably present and undeniably uncomfortable (I am not ashamed of my continuing love for the Trash Can Man.) The fact that I have never yet managed to read The Stand at a point when I don't have a runny nose always adds to the experience somewhat.

- It is the last week of Summer Reading which is always both a little melancholy and a little bit of a relief. Now, of course, we get a bunch of emails about our annual All Staff Day, which is coming up in about a month and about which I am not excited. The higher-ups really want us to be excited, though. This year, there is apparently some sort of after-party. I cannot imagine who will be attending that - after a mandatory 8 hours of meeting and socializing while seated in uncomfortable chairs, all I want is to go home. At least now it's on a Thursday instead of Monday, so I don't have to go to choir right afterwards.

- Choir starts in two weeks! I'm so excited! I haven't sung properly since April and my range has probably atrophied terribly, but I'm still so excited!






*My mother always wanted to be a Girl Scout but never got to be. Thus, all of her children were, for varying lengths of time**.

**I stayed in the longest and made it to Juniors. (Got my wings, baby!) Sometimes, I regret not sticking with it for longer, but my troop kinda sucked and I wanted to take taekwondo, so...

***I don't think it's the first book I read in which abortion was mentioned, but it's definitely the first book that connected it with coat hangers. What an odd thing to remember. It is also the book where I learned about That One Yeats Poem Every Horror Fan Knows.


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August 13th, 2014


09:56 pm
Things:

- Did I spend a good chunk of this morning making a big list of apocalyptica on goodreads? Yes. Yes, I did. Alas that much of it is not at my library, because it is old sci-fi and, unless it is considered "classic", we don't have a lot of that. (Some of it is, though, so I will work my way through that first.)

- My mother, sisters, and I are going to grown-up Girl Scout camp next week, so I am carefully placing holds so that I have a couple books to bring with me. I had thought that I would be able to bring Riddley Walker, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to be done with it before then, even if the language does slow my normal reading speed.

- The thing about reading Riddley Walker especially if you, as I did today, spend time reading it aloud to yourself and you are, like me, something of a sponge for turns of phrase, is that you end up feeling like saying things like, "I ben on my oansome" out loud to other people is perfectly normal. It changes the way I form sentences in my head. Lots of books with particularly strong voices do that, of course (I am apparently very obnoxious after reading Dorothy Sayers, for example), but I haven't read one that did it this strongly in a while. The last one I remember that did was Grapes of Wrath.

- Good gods, has it really been ten years since I read Grapes of Wrath? Maybe I should do that again.

- Tonight was movie night at Bainbridge and we watched Lady from Shanghai. Which was fun. Less fun was the discussion afterward, during which there was a small argument over the question of "is film noir in general and the figure of the femme fatale in specific misogynist?" Which, yes, of course it is. Look, I love me some femme fatales, but if your film genre overwhelmingly presents women as being manipulative and evil and then being punished for it, maybe your film genre has a problem with women. But several middle-aged dudes disagreed with me on that and were condescending and one of them actually said, "Well, some women really are like that." Which, just, wow. Look, dudes, I am not trying to take your movies away or tell you that you are bad people for liking them - I like them too. And I get that it can be hard liking something that is problematic - you want to talk about a genre that has problems with women? Come watch horror films with me sometime. But middle-aged dudes do not get to tell me that the movie I just watched about an evil scheming woman destroying all the men in her life because she is an evil scheming woman is not maybe a little misogynist.

- Staff meeting tomorrow. I do not want to go. Alas.

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(2 crow calls | feed the birds)

August 12th, 2014


12:21 pm
So, right now, I am in the middle of reading Riddley Walker, which, oh man, you guys, it is pretty amazing. And it has so many things that I love: super interesting use of language, the formation of new societies after a shadowy and half-forgotten catastrophe, weird new mythology (I would read an entire book of different Eusa stories, not going to lie), and creepy puppets. I am only a third of the way through - one of the nice things about the language is that I'm forced to slow down while reading it - and I kinda want it to never end.

It has reminded me of how much I love post-apocalyptica*, so it's probably time to start compiling a list and reading a whole bunch. Guys, what is your favorite post-apocalyptic novel?





*I have been a bit put off the subgenre in the last few years because it seemed like every time I found a new one, it turned out to be about zombies. Now, zombies are fine, but they are not my favorite kind of apocalypse. Also, I tend to be more interested in what happens after the actual apocalyptic catastrophe than in dealing with the catastrophe itself. I will read pages and pages of worldbuilding about your new (and inevitably horrible) society - I do not much want to read about you fighting zombies.

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(5 crow calls | feed the birds)

August 9th, 2014


11:30 am
Today, I made failure cake.

Tonight, we're having guests for dinner. Some weeks ago, my dad decided he was going to try his hand at making beer, and it should be ready by now. Tonight is the Beer Sampling Ceremony, and my sisters and my aunt are coming, and dad's making steak, and it should be lovely. And I said I'd make dessert.

So I went into my recipe bookmarks and found a cake recipe that sounded nice but that I had never tried before: a spicy mocha poundcake. Because poundcake is delicious and who doesn't like spicy baked goods? So I made it.

Oh man, you guys, it is the worst cake I've ever made. First of all, way too much cayenne. Secondly, even once you adjust to the spice, the chocolate and the coffee flavors are almost entirely absent. And it's not even sweet! (Also, it's not properly a pound cake - the dense solidity of the poundcake is totally missing. Just because you made it in a loaf pan does not make it poundcake.) It is a complete failure as a dessert, which is very sad.

So, with a heavy heart, I threw it away. And now I am making these instead. This time, I tasted the batter before I baked them, so I know they will not also be failure cakes.

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August 5th, 2014


03:33 pm
And today, I gave a library card to a kid who is the spitting image of Joffrey Baratheon.

Huh.

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01:34 pm
Dear the library-going public,

I understand that sometimes, you check out a book that you have every intention of reading but then, for some reason, you don't read it. But you're going to! And it comes due and you renew it, but you still don't read it. And you keep on renewing it for as long as you can, but you never read it, and it just sits somewhere, gathering dust. I get it - I have some of those myself.

But maybe, when you finally have to turn it in after it's been gathering dust for weeks in your house, you could make sure that said dust does not include a corner of the book that's covered in cobwebs. Cobwebs that still contain a dead fly.

Your library staff will thank you for it.

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August 4th, 2014


08:27 am
I feel like today would be an excellent day to not go to work but instead somehow find a friendly group of fangirls and spend the day rewatching a significant chunk of Justice League.

Stupid adult responsibilities.

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