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I've been trying to remember what I did between Thursday, when I got back from Falmouth, and Monday. As far as I remember, on Thursday I didn't do very much, except I did take a nap in the afternoon on account of having slept in twin beds in Noank and Falmouth and not sleeping as well as usual because I kept finding the edges of the mattresses. I remember falling over and thinking "Big bed!" and stretching out, and being happy about it.

I have no idea what I did on Friday, so I suspect I didn't do anything important. That might have been the really excellent embroidery day, though, because I did do some embroidery sometime between Thursday and Monday.

On Saturday I gave up and called RCN, and was shocked to find that they would send a technician on Sunday. I don't remember what else I did on Saturday.

On Sunday I was embroidering again when the technician came at about 3:00, looked at what I had for equipment, looked at what I was supposed to have for internet service, asked me what I was paying, and was aghast at the answer. He said I should call the customer loyalty department and ask for more service and less bill, because the service I was supposed to have is so slow it isn't supported these days. And the price for more service is lower than the price I was paying. I know good advice when I hear it, so I called on Monday and got double the internet speed for $30 less.

On Monday I had fun stuff on the list. I did note that the light outdoors was weird on account of the eclipse, but I didn't bother trying to look at the eclipse itself; I contented myself with looking at the crescent-shaped holes in the shadows on the sidewalk. And I went off and bought myself a $350 Olds Ambassador trumpet, because damn it, why not? When I got it home I broke it out and managed to play a C, a G and a D very badly. I printed out a fingering chart, because I already know how to read music (at least in treble clef); I just need to know how to make the notes. My embouchure needs work, though.

Yesterday I had my GP appointment at 8:15, which of course meant I got there at 7:20 and the office doesn't open until 8:00. Under normal circumstances I would have gone in search of coffee, but I decided not to in case of fasting blood test. I didn't want to have to come back again for that. So, appointment (I need to lose weight, but I knew that) and blood draw, and prescription refill, and no shingles vaccine until I'm 60 but go get it pretty much the minute my insurance will cover it (I had a raging case of chicken pox at 16), and then I went off to breakfast at Cutty's and coffee at Caffe Nero in Brookline Village because I hadn't been to either place yet.

Cutty's was good, but too far out of my normal weekend range to make it a possible destination for breakfast. Caffe Nero was good too, and I will definitely keep it in mind because they're starting to be everywhere. Following that I went to Walgreens and Trader Joe's and home. When I got home I decided to be a good kid and schedule the mammogram so as to get it over with, so I did that and it turned out to be for this afternoon. Hooray, I still have Thursday to go whale watching (bought the ticket yesterday) before I go to the eye doctor on Friday morning.

The tape they put on the gauze in my elbow-pit after the blood draw gave me a really impressive set of red marks exactly where the tape was. I probably should have taken it off before I went to the drugstore, but I try not to leave biohazards in other people's trash cans, so I kept it on until I got home.

I should not have read my work email on Monday, but I was trying to keep ahead of all the junk mail and FYI-type messages that get overwhelming if I look at two weeks of them all at once. That's how I found out that CODA has added a subsection to 2-23e (control of pain and anxiety) regarding substance abuse and effective immediately, which means we have to add it to our self-study now. They couldn't have waited until after our site visit? Never mind, I'm on vacation, damn it.

I'm really sorely tempted to drop a towel over Snip and cut her front claws. In my imagination, it works a lot better than I suspect it will in reality. Most likely I would need another set of hands to keep her in the towel.

Lily has trained me to give her cat treats with her morning thyroid pill (sniff at pill pocket in dish, give me a "That's all?" sort of look, act disinterested until she hears the treat bag open, look interested again, dive in as soon as the treats hit the dish). I don't actually care if she won't eat the pill without treats, as long as she eats the pill. Heaven forbid I ever have to give Snip pills twice a day. She'll turn into a dirigible with legs if she gets that much cheese.
dchenes: (Default)
Lily didn't need any teeth pulled. I guess she just needed a piece of tartar knocked off one of her upper right molars, because she's back to being happy about that side of her face again. She's also the poster child for methimazole. The internet says long-term medication will shorten her lifespan a bit, but she's 11 already, so I bet she'll get to 14. Besides, the internet isn't always right, and besides that, Lily can't read, so she doesn't know she's supposed to have a slightly shorter lifespan.

I spent the afternoon at the aquarium, because I wanted to do that anyway and it was a good excuse to haul myself out of my chair and go somewhere with air conditioning. I objected to the whole "get dressed properly" bit, but I did it anyway, and had a good time once I got there. If I ever went insane and wanted a salt-water aquarium, I think I would want a hogfish. The big ones look like Muppets to me. Of course, in order to have a fish that big, I would have to have an aquarium the size of my bathroom, so it will never happen.

What might happen, if I ever hear back from the seller (it's Craigslist, so possibly I won't), is I might end up spending my $500 bonus from last week on a $400 student trumpet. I've wanted a trumpet since I gave up the trombone, and I gave up the trombone because it's in bass clef and my head is in treble. (Six years of clarinet and however many years of singing higher than tenor will do that.) A trumpet is in treble, and doesn't take up as much space as a trombone does. And besides, if I can play the trumpet I could play bits of Fanfare for the Common Man, and the Great Gate of Kiev, and half of Vivaldi's Trumpet Concerto, and the trumpet fanfare that starts Apollo 13, and some other things that have always made me wish I were a brass player so I could do that. I looked at Rayburn Music's sale page, but I'm not willing to pay $1200 for a trumpet I don't know how to play yet anyway.

The weather map says there's a squall line bearing down on us. I wish it would get here and change the air for a little while at least.
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The weather is lovely again, having been shoot-me-now hot Sunday through Tuesday. It was 85 in the living room at 9:30 on Tuesday night and I couldn't get any cooler air indoors for some reason, even though it was cooler outdoors.

Last night was excellent sleeping weather, and I went and ruined it by having a frustration dream. I've been having a lot of those lately, and they all involve shouting at somebody (usually somebody who I would really like to shout at, but I can't in real life; the two I remember are Trump and, last night, Dad). I've also bitten through my night guard sometime in the last couple of weeks. I do not shout at anybody when I'm awake, but maybe I should start. Or maybe I should go somewhere way out in the back of beyond and shout at trees or something.

For lack of shouting at things, I bought myself a ticket to the Boston Pops 25th anniversary gospel concert on Saturday. One of my coworkers sings with them, and I could use a dose of raise-the-roof music (especially if I'm not singing it myself, which is work). Besides, I haven't been to Symphony Hall in something like 15 years, so I'm probably overdue.

I'm taking the last two days of June off, and am considering going and finding out what the heck is in Providence other than at least one tattoo shop and the train station. I just have to get through tomorrow, all of next week, and three days of the week after next. I hope I can actually manage that.
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The Boston Music Intelligencer reviewed our concert, and said "More diction." In Sanders, you can't be on the stage and hear what the audience hears (or doesn't). I suggested we should circulate a few people per section through the house when we rehearse in there, so "more diction" will actually mean something to more of us, as opposed to being something the conductor says five or six times per rehearsal all semester, so we stop listening when he says it.

I have had it up to the eyebrows with responsible adulthood, and it's only Wednesday. This week the Gainful Employment subdivision of Responsible Adulthood needs to be good for more things than providing food, shelter, and payments for utilities, so I'm running off to the movies (Guardians of the Galaxy vol 2) tonight, rather than going home and doing the rest of the laundry.

Speaking of washing, I've ruined one of my favorite things about having a cat who hunts. These days Lily won't go into the bathroom voluntarily unless I'm in the bathtub (in which case there's no chance that the vet will descend upon her), so she won't come hunt grillonpedes in the tub. And I am damn well not getting into the tub myself if there's a grillionpede in it. Which, this morning, there was, and it was very large. And I had to flush it down the drain myself. Harumpf.

I have to make an appointment for Lily to have blood drawn sometime next month. She seems to be doing OK in all the observable-by-owner categories (eating, using the litterbox, sleeping, reminding Snip who's in charge, generally acting like herself), but I have no way of knowing what her internal chemistry is up to.

Snip got a claw stuck in the masking tape around my embroidery last night, and even that didn't convince her she needs a manicure. She does, desperately, but she's rather like Granny Weatherwax in terms of things she can't be having with.
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Back at work again, and actually getting things done for a change. I looked at my email on Thursday night when I got home (shame on me) and reduced 87 emails to 42 (I don't need all the "HMS in the News" and server update notifications and "I'll be in late last Wednesday" emails). By the time I got in this morning, I only had 56. And most of them didn't count. That's an acceptable Monday.

Now that I've spent last week eating everything in sight and gotten gluttony out of my system, it's time to Do Something And Mean It about the way my pants don't fit. I've done it once before, which means I can do it, so I'm going to do it. It can't be that hard to stop eating leftover meeting food from meetings I wasn't at. I shouldn't have stopped walking home from work, either, so starting that again can't hurt in the long run. In the short run it will, because I still have one spot on my left big toe knuckle that's healing but isn't currently happy with me.

It is gorgeous out. I should open two or three windows when I get home and get the Hairy Beasts drunk on fresh air. They haven't had any since February, and they get silly when they aren't used to it. I have to open at least two windows so they can each sit in one. Lily crammed herself onto the windowsill between the back of the futon and the (closed) living room window yesterday morning, and I had to go disturb her just so I knew she wasn't stuck back there. She usually only does that when the window is open and she has the windowsill and all the space before the screen to lounge around in. She wasn't stuck, she just wanted to charge up all her little furry solar cells. I firmly believe the Hairy Beasts are solar-powered, and apparently while I was gone they ran down, because since I got back they've been in any sunspot they can find.

Hopefully now that the weather is getting better and I've had a vacation, it won't be such a chore going to chorus rehearsals. I kept getting to Wednesday and finding my heart wasn't in it. It'll be over after May 5, so I don't have to keep hauling my carcass to Cambridge for much longer. I don't know why my heart isn't in it this semester; it's not that Mendelssohn is boring (in fact, he's sneaky; he looks easy, but he isn't), but I just haven't felt like putting in the work of actually singing for either conductor and I don't know why not.
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The regiment has been investing in things that don't involve a million calories. So now I own the complete Fawlty Towers, which I should have bought years ago, and the CD of our last chorus concert. I like to listen to those because I never know how the pieces sound to the audience; all I hear is the alto section and whichever other section(s) I'm taking entrances or starting notes from. When I'm singing this stuff, I'm too busy to appreciate the whole thing. But I have to say we knocked The Golden Harp out of the park, pretty much. I still don't like Fern Hill (it was written in 1964 and the accompaniment has almost nothing to do with what the chorus is doing). The Harvest of a Quiet Eye was OK, but it's more "soloists accompanied by chorus and orchestra" and I'm not in the mood for that (although the baritone soloist was excellent). I'm also trying to adjust my listening out of "Pay attention and get this right" and into "I like this piece of music".

It's going to be snot-freezing weather again this weekend and snow tomorrow and Tuesday. I disapprove of both of those ideas, because even if it's only March, it's March and I'm sick of the sweatshirt-and-wool-socks routine. And I really need to buy a lot of kitty litter, and I'm going to have to do it tonight, because doing it in the snow is Right Out.

I may need to take a mental health day tomorrow, because I can't come up with a good reason why today isn't Friday. It's even been a quiet week, but I'm done dealing with specific people and office machinery (I really wish I weren't the copier expert again; every job I've had, I've sat near the copier, and become the unjamming expert by proximity). Not that not being at work tomorrow would fix much of anything, but I might have a more acceptable level of cope on Monday.
dchenes: (katana)
To borrow a concept from somewhere else (but I forget where), I have been beaten with the Whelming Stick so much lately that I am now officially Over-Whelmed. There are so many medium-sized things going on all at once that I don't want to deal with any of them.

1. Lily is going to be taking pills for the rest of her life, and the rest of her life is probably five years. This complicates my ability to go anywhere for more than 24 hours; she can skip one pill, but only one. And if I'm lucky, her liver and kidneys won't require medication because her thyroid does. I have no idea how I'm going to convince her to take three medications every day. On account of her not having so many pre-molars these days, she sounds like a dog eating peanut butter when she eats pill pockets. The idea of chicken-flavored peanut butter gives me the blue creevles.

2. Chorus is over until January 25, but the music is still stuck in my head and we got pretty thoroughly humiliated in front of the composers at the last dress rehearsal. It's hard to sing joyfully when you're going to be stopped and savaged for not being exactly in tune/not enough diction/etc. after three bars. We did it for the actual performance, but I had to go find a corner in one of the "dressing rooms" after the dress rehearsal and get some equilibrium back in order to perform up to my own standard.

3. The thermostat in my apartment has decided not to work. It sits there merrily reporting that it's 60 in the living room, and that the heat is supposed to come on at 64, only it doesn't. I'm hoping it's something stupid like needing new batteries, or having a loose wire. I really don't want it to involve tearing out all the wiring between the living room and the furnace; I can live with a certain amount of deconstruction (see "kitchen floor") but I don't want any cats going exploring in the walls and getting stuck.

4. I need new concert dress, or I need to get serious about fitting into the concert dress I've got. I went through about four variations trying to find something that (a) fit me and (b) wasn't obviously two different blacks under strong lighting. I don't fit into my size 10 pants. This cannot be allowed to continue, but when I stopped following Weight Watchers I enjoyed the absence of being hungry all the time. I didn't realize I was, until I stopped. I have to figure out how to get around that.

5. I never get caught up on anything domestic, except the bills (because I like having shelter and utilities and not much debt) and possibly the dishes. I need to do three loads of laundry and sort through the pantry shelves and vacuum all the rugs and wash the floors and clean out the fridge. But I never have motivation when I have time, and I never have time when I have motivation. So I live in a state of more chaos than I really want lately.
dchenes: (katana)
So I can find it again when I want it (and I will, because it is awesome):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoUCIvbUQHI
dchenes: (katana)
I haven't been embroidering again, because my shoulders have been complaining right when I get into the groove and it throws me right out of it again. Sigh. I'm never going to get out of this tree, am I? (Current piece of pattern is the crown of a tree, and all the individual leaves thereof. But I can't tell which leaf is where by looking at the pattern; it all looks like blobs and I faithfully reproduce the blobs and wonder what's the point. Then I stand six feet away from the actual embroidery and then I realize "oh, OK, that blob is about six leaves.")

I finally caved last night and downloaded Civ 5, which required my subscribing to Steam, which I am not thrilled about. But Civ 4 is too old for my current laptop, and I miss it. And messing around on the computer doesn't hurt my shoulders. It does, however, frustrate the Hairy Beasts because they don't fit in the available lap space. I just hope Civ 5 breaks the pattern of odd-numbered Civ versions not being as good as even-numbered ones.

I could have voted early, but the early voting places are more out of my way than my regular polling place, so I'm going to stand in line with all the other regular election day people. Voting early wouldn't have put me out of any more misery anyway, because despite the Facebook filters I put in, half of my news feed is politics. The other half is baseball, which is more cheerful. Even though I'm not a baseball fan, I understand sports-cheerful.

Today was New Crunchies Day, which is the one day in the month when Lily eats breakfast enthusiastically. She actually ate it out of the bowl Snip likes to eat out of, which confused Snip quite some. I'm not sure she realizes there are two bowls with the exact same amount of the exact same stuff. (I love Snip dearly, but she has the IQ of mayonnaise.) I may just stop trying to feed Lily dry food.

The modern music for chorus this semester is growing on me, but I really wish it wasn't as crunchy as it is in so many places on purpose. Nothing like a section in which every other note is an accidental in order to avoid having a recognizable chord anywhere. Granted, it's easier to sing music that looks like that than it is to play it on an instrument, but still. I'm teaching my sense of relative pitch to appreciate that even though the alto section is singing a second against the tenors, ignore what it sounds like and just be glad it's the right interval. After the concert on December 3, I can go back to singing thirds against the processional for The Play of Herod and making myself feel better.
dchenes: (katana)
On Friday I walked into a conference room at 8:30 AM and walked out again at 4:30 PM with my brain leaking out of my ears. In between, I took notes on CODA Standard 2. After dinner when I finally had enough brain to do it, I took the vacuum cleaner apart as far as possible to try to figure out why it was making a new high-pitched shrieking noise. I cleaned out everything I could get to, and the belt doesn't seem to be the problem, although cleaning out the innards seems to have helped a little. So I probably need a new vacuum cleaner, if I can't get the motor looked at. Who the hell repairs 13-year-old Bissell uprights?

On Saturday I hauled myself out of the house eventually and went grocery shopping, and took very careful note of all the other non-grocery shopping I needed to do, and didn't do it. I vacuumed the living room and the bedroom and cleaned the bathroom and hung around rotting my brain playing Two Dots. And I bought a new Kate Rusby album and discovered that learning new songs is still fun even if I don't do it in voice lessons.

Yesterday it rained, finally, and I waited until it stopped and then didn't go buy a new vacuum cleaner. I did, however, go to Star Market (for the first time in ages; last time I needed cleaning supplies, I went to Target after work) and the Super 88 (since I was in the neighborhood, y'know) and TJ Maxx because the towels I've been using since 1993 have now officially fallen apart, and bFresh because they have my favorite flavor of Epic bars (bison, bacon and cranberry). So I came home with TP and alphabet noodles and Japanese candy and towels and Epic bars. Successful trip even though I didn't do anything about the vacuum cleaner. And then I came home and did laundry, and thereby ensured that I got to put on not-dry-yet pants this morning. It's like putting on a damp bathing suit. Some day I will learn to wash those pants on Saturday afternoon at the latest if I want to wear them on Monday.

Some day I will also learn never to sync my iPod after 8:00 at night, especially if I have to be at work at 7:45 the next morning. I wanted to put Kate Rusby on my iPod so I can keep learning new songs (mostly After This and The Youthful Boy), so I plugged it into my computer at 10:00 (after charging it enough to bring it back from the dead), and it wanted a software update. So, OK, that's about 20 minutes downloading and updating. And then the fun started, because it wanted to use an Apple ID from at least ten years ago to sync old stuff. And then it insisted that my new computer wasn't authorized to sync that stuff. So an hour of arguing later, I finally figured it out (although I still haven't sorted it out, and something is still using the old Apple ID and thinks I've authorized 4 of the allowable 5 devices to use whatever it is it's using. Since I only have three current devices, and the old Apple ID doesn't exist anywhere I can get to and unauthorize anything, I gave up.). So I went to bed at 11:30 with my iPod containing everything it should.

So at 11:15 I walk into the bedroom and discover that after nine years, Lily has finally decided to attempt to sleep in the clean laundry. But she hadn't gotten the hang of it yet, because she tipped over the laundry basket and was sleeping against the stack of folded shirts. By the time I woke up this morning, she had figured it out and was sleeping on top of a blue shirt in the tipped-over laundry basket. Silly beast. It was good sleeping weather last night, at least; I myself slept in my bed, instead of on top of the blanket, for the first time in two weeks. And Snip slept on the blanket instead of on the floor.
dchenes: (katana)
Just because Mozart is over, doesn't mean he's gone. The Regina Coeli keeps coming back unless I'm thinking hard about something else. But Mozart is over, and so is Schubert, and I can stop hauling my carcass to Cambridge unless I want to, until September or so. The concert went reasonably well, at least. We did away with processing on and off stage, which was nice because it meant we were sitting on stage before the house lights went off, so I could see how much audience we actually had. It was a decent house, but not packed. But we made an hour and a quarter of tuneful noises and got applauded for it, and I took myself out for ice cream afterwards (along with half of the rest of Harvard Square, apparently).

That was Saturday, after the usual grocery shopping and some unusual grocery shopping besides. I didn't really NEED Bloody Mary base and a celery root, but I'm in an experimental frame of mind. I will not be combining those things; they're for two different experiments. At least one of which will involve actual cooking, because on a day like this, hot food is important. I ordered soup for the curriculum committee meeting and everyone thought it was great.

Yesterday I managed not to go outdoors at all, on account of it being grey and gloomy and threatening to rain. Besides which, I had already done all the running around. So I stayed indoors all day and redid the same line of embroidery three times because I couldn't figure out whether or not it was going to be right when I got to the end of it. Even if it's wrong now, I'm not doing it again. I'll work around it. So there. I also spent more of yesterday than really necessary being a feline thruway; Lily had a case of the fidgets and kept wanting to come down my front from the back of the futon. I wish she would figure out how not to do that. I could figure it out for her, but it would probably involve cat foot in my eye, rather than the usual cat butt in my face. I think I'd rather keep the claws out of my eye, thanks.

I have a mess of financial homework and information gathering to get around to before next week. I finally found an independent financial advisor, and (shockingly) was told I have enough in the savings account. I'd rather have it there, where it earns interest, than anywhere it doesn't. But that's why I went in search of financial advice.
dchenes: (katana)
Oogh. I know I shouldn't have stayed up so late last night, but at least I got to sleep before midnight. My new embroidery project involved tearing out six inches at the bottom of a piece I did six years ago, and tearing out (even though it was single strand and some of it was backstitch) is slower than stitching. I kept having to figure out how I had stitched it in the first place, because there's a right end and a wrong end to start pulling on. When I put stitches in, I don't usually think about how I would take them out again six years later. (And I am done signing pieces; this is the only one I've ever signed and it turned out to be bad luck.)

Today I get to drag myself through the second dress rehearsal. Monday's wasn't as bad as it could have been, partly because the nitpicking was hitting the orchestra and the soloists as much as us. Different concertmaster this time, and not as easy on the eyes as the last one, so I can't amuse myself that way. I wonder what the summer chorus is singing? Probably something I'd like to sing, but I need a break from dragging myself to Cambridge after work and being a responsible member of the executive committee. My personal soundtrack this week is "Keep the Customer Satisfied".

While "if not doing anything else, clean something" is an admirable philosophy for the facilities department, I wish they wouldn't vacuum in here during work hours.
dchenes: (katana)
The concert went well, which was nice. And I have a new musical obsession (Adiemus, by Karl Jenkins). But I think I also have an Insidious Grue of some sort, because this morning I blew my nose and the entire office started spinning counterclockwise and didn't stop for about 30 seconds. And I haven't felt quite right in general since yesterday afternoon anyway. But the CODA Standard 2 first draft waits for no man, and I'm going to be out next Monday besides. So here I sit, feeling not quite right and trying to figure out how many of the 25 parts of Standard 2, and the 15 sub-parts of Standard 2-23, we don't have yet. And probably failing miserably, but today I can't tell. As close as I can get is "we have big chunks of Standard 2 but they're not in any kind of order yet."

Trader Joe's has lemon ravioli. Lemon is one of my favorite flavors. I've been eating entirely too many lemon ravioli. At least I have soup stock again, because I happened to find chicken bones at Whole Foods. I paid entirely too much for chicken bones, but compared to the price of the actual chicken, they were cheap. And now I can make some more soup, once I decide what kind.

Despite coming home with chicken bones, I went to Whole Foods in search of Noosa yogurt, which my boss is very fond of. It's worth being fond of, but it's expensive as a habit both on account of the price and on account of the fat. The lemon one has lemon curd in it and is extremely tasty. I haven't read the label on the strawberry rhubarb one yet, but it's whole milk yogurt, so it's got fat in it too.

I wish we could get to a point where the weather is warm when the sun is out. Right now we can either have cold and sunny or warmer and overcast if not actually raining. Warm and sunny is what I want. Can't have it yet, though.
dchenes: (katana)
The Week That Would Not End finally ended, but not without a hassle. I had 36 hours of something or other that made my stomach object to anything more complicated than water. I didn't feel that bad otherwise, so I sang the concert anyway. (Yes, I know, thou shalt not do that. But I'm not sure it was infectious, and besides, the concert was the last chorus activity until late January.) Next semester, Mozart's Solemn Vespers of the Confessor and something Schubert.

This here week is supposed to be less about "go to work, and cram every single other thing in your life around the edges of going to work". So far it still feels crammed, though. Partly because I didn't do laundry until yesterday, so the drying rack I finally took down on Thursday after putting it up last Saturday is up again. I refuse to live with a permanent drying rack taking up space in my kitchen, so it's coming down again tonight and staying that way until the weekend, when the whole laundry issue rears its ugly head again.

In the process of making clean-out-the-freezer soup, I discovered a forgotten bag of chicken breasts that I should probably make soup stock out of. Problem being, chicken breasts make fairly poor stock even when not frozen for ages (being boneless, and white meat), so I really need some turkey parts to go with them. Last year, between Thanksgiving and Christmas was turkey parts season, and I could get necks and wings when I wanted them. Not so much this year, apparently. And I'm out of celery flakes. I guess that means I have to buy celery. I like celery flakes because they don't turn liquid in the bottom of the refrigerator and then I have to clean up a mess. But since it took me until yesterday to get to the Walgreens in Brookline Village, and I could have done it any time from Tuesday onward, a trip to Penzey's will probably take me until February to get around to. (And I don't want to go from Brighton to Arlington Heights in February. Too much waiting for buses involved.)
dchenes: (katana)
Long week. I can tell it's a long week because the laundry that went into the dryer on Saturday is still there. So, in the sink, is the frying pan I made the anti-Green Goop in (grated zucchini, Penzey's Sandwich Sprinkle compound butter, and parmesan. YES PLEASE.).

Dad is giving me $5000 to buy bookshelves, because he decided he was never going to get around to making them. I understand, and I sort of thought this project was cursed several years ago, but I has a sad anyway. He said he'd make me something smaller, so maybe I'll ask for a keyboard stand. And now I need to find somebody in Boston who can make me bookshelves. Good is not negotiable. Cheap would be nice but is not the overriding concern, and fast isn't even on the scale since I've already been waiting for at least five years. But this is not the week to go looking for cabinetmakers. Too tired.

Long weekend coming up. After last weekend, in which I spent Saturday standing around in the cold rain for most of the morning and Sunday with no energy at all, I'll take a long weekend without too much rain in the forecast. It seems that 3/4 of the office is taking at least half of Friday off; I wonder if that means I can do it too, or if it means I'll be alone in the office by 5:00? Not that being alone in this particular office is bad, it's just slightly strange.

Apparently the HRC members are going to be singing the solos for this concert (by audition). I'm debating whether I want to try to get one for Come Ye Sons of Art, because I already know how those go. It can't hurt to try, anyway. Also good: as far as I know, we don't really have any Popular People Who Shouldn't Sing Solo But Always Get To Anyway. We usually hire soloists, which eliminates that problem. (That problem is actually one reason why I left the Circle of Song.)

Speaking of music, apparently you can't just walk into a store and buy an iPod case any more. I guess everybody's using their phones for that. But I want to use my phone for things other than storing music, so I have an iPod. Which has no case. Which makes me nervous. Actually, the fact that it has no screen protector makes me nervous; I took the extremely beat-up screen protector off it yesterday and lo, I can read the screen again! But now it's completely nekkid. I'm not carrying it around in the same containment as any keys while it's nekkid.
dchenes: (katana)
First HRC rehearsal last night was the usual madhouse, but we're singing Purcell (Ode to St. Cecilia) and Purcell (Come Ye Sons of Art) and I can live with that. Especially since I've sung Come Ye Sons of Art before; I just can't remember whether it was high school or college. In any case, I know how it goes. And the altos get the melody at least once, because they pick up where the countertenor soloist leaves off. That almost makes up for the last three or four pages of alto line being "find an A and stay there, except when you go to G# once in a while, for two repeats". Easy to memorize, anyway.

Tonight I get MRIed. I almost don't care if the second thing they say is "And we can't do anything about it" as long as the first thing they say is "THAT is why your shoulder hurts." Because it does, and it keeps on doing so. I rather suspect it's an -itis, but I don't know which one. Bursitis? Tendonitis? Arthritis? Some of each? One from column A and one from column B? I doubt it's arthritis, but either or both of the other two wouldn't surprise me.

It occurs to me that putting in stud earrings on Tuesday night might not have been the wisest idea ever, because I have to remember to take them out again tonight when I take all of my other jewelry (watch and necklace) off. But I did want to make sure the front hole in my left ear was still open. I couldn't get an earring into it on Monday morning, but it turns out it works much better if you aren't in so much of a hurry that you don't aim the hook at the hole properly. Given better light and less of a rush, it worked.

Let's see, good stuff...the weather last night was warmer than I thought it was going to be, based on the heat having come on in the middle of the night a couple of nights ago. It was marvelous sleeping weather once I kicked the quilt off the bed again.

Also good stuff...I bought some new work-appropriate pants, which are very comfortable and make a decent attempt at fitting pretty well. Or at least they fit now. Last time I bought pants like this, they stretched so much when I washed them that I couldn't wear them at all afterward. This time I think I'll wash one pair to start with, and won't put them in the dryer. I have to admit that the idea of experimental pants amuses me, so yes, I am twelve occasionally.
dchenes: (katana)
I lost enormous chunks of this weekend to voice recital dress rehearsal and performance. It wouldn't have been quite so bad except that both of those things happened in Stoneham and I had to meet my ride downtown. So I had to leave two hours before I was supposed to be in Stoneham so I could get downtown and wait for the rest of the carpool. I think next time I have to go to Stoneham, I'll have to suck it up and Zipcar it.

However, the recital went reasonably well. Naturally, my best rendition of the song I sang was at the lesson last Wednesday; the dress rehearsal version was a disaster and the recital version was half a disaster. I did finally get myself sorted out, but it took me two verses. The oldest student is in his 60s and is writing a musical, because he wants to (he's a lawyer by profession). He did three songs from that, and one of them is a patter song that got firmly stuck in my head after I'd heard it twice. I may have to go see this musical if it ever gets performed, just for that song.

At least I managed to get one load of laundry done on Saturday morning, so there's clean underwear. I meant to wash towels, too, but I have another set of towels. I just wish it would quit with the humidity, because that means the towels don't dry after I shower and I end up washing towels a lot.

In cheerier news, keeping myself at 26 points per day last week was good for three of the eight pounds I want to get rid of. So I guess that still works. If I'm really being good about it, I'll stay there until I've lost about 11, which is where I was happiest with life in general. Mostly I want to get back into the size 8 pants and stay there. So I go tromping off to wherever has the best cherry tomatoes, and buy a lot of them. I can't immediately think of anything else that makes me as happy as good cherry tomatoes. Except perhaps good blackberries in January. "Eat only local produce" doesn't work in New England in the winter unless you really like butternut squash, and I can't stand the stuff. So I buy blackberries from Elsewhere.
dchenes: (katana)
I guess I must be making progress with PT, because today I got to use three-pound weights for one of the exercises. Good thing I had PT today when it was less humid, because yesterday all I wanted was for the joint to fall apart and get it over with. (Although it won't fall apart; the problem is mostly that things in there are too tight.)

I wish I could get cherry tomatoes like the ones I can get right now, in February. YUM. Ain't nothin' wrong with cherry tomatoes and mozzarella balls. Especially when the cherry tomatoes outnumber the mozzarella balls 5 to 1 or so. I'm trying to take a surplus 8 lb off, which I put on by eating what I wanted when I wanted for two weeks. I had to break out the size 10 pants, and that makes me disappointed. So, back to 26 points per day for a while and as much walking as I can stuff into weekends. Too bad I have to spend a good chunk of both days this weekend in Stoneham for dress rehearsal (Saturday) and studio recital (Sunday). I'm only singing We Shall Wear Midnight this time, and I think I might be doing it early in the recital although we don't have a real concert order yet. I usually end up somewhere in the last half of the program, but this time I was given a choice and I said I didn't want to go last. Which I guess means I go early.

Speaking of concerts, HRC is doing Purcell's Ode to St. Cecilia this winter. I listened to it the other night and observed that it's a good workout for a tenor soloist and probably less work for the chorus than the Rossini from last fall (thank goodness). I still have "sing the alto solo in the Messiah" on my bucket list, too. I'm debating how long I want to stay with HRC; I'm clerk for this year and next, but I'm not sure I want to put up with this director for the foreseeable future after that. Maybe with a different director. Who knows, though?
dchenes: (katana)
Heavily medical week last week. GP on Tuesday leading to orthopedist on Wednesday and cardiologist on Thursday, for ECG. The unofficial opinion is that I haven't inherited a bicuspid aortic valve; since it was a holiday weekend, I probably won't get the official opinion until later this week. But I'll take the unofficial one to start with.

The holiday weekend was good; I haven't had a holiday weekend including a Friday in years, or so it seems to me. It feels different when the weekend starts on Friday, because you can get all the Saturday stuff done early if you want to. When the weekend goes Saturday to Monday, you get all the weekend stuff done as usual. Or at least that's how it works if you're me. This weekend I did a lot of walking by way of buying fruit and kitty litter on Friday, and made a massage appointment for next Friday at 4:00 since I was in the neighborhood anyway. Saturday I had a slow morning and was shocked at how deserted Coolidge Corner was at 2:00 in the afternoon. That's what July 4 will do for you, I guess. I watched the fireworks on TV and wished they had spent less camera time on the angle that showed the smoke with the fireworks behind it. But I have to say that Melinda Doolittle and the Sons of Serendip are both worth listening to. (I think I'll try "I Lived" in my next voice lesson. This semester we're Messing About With Anything, so I never sing the same thing two weeks in a row. Steeleye Span, Jimmy Eat World, random show tunes, random arias...in short, Messing About.)

Yesterday I decided that it was too nice out to spend all day indoors (although it was quite nice indoors too, and unhumid enough to get embroidery done), so I went out to Coolidge Corner again and spent $80 on new books and ice cream. It's peach ice cream season again, which could be a bad thing except that JP Licks peach ice cream is reasonably peachy but way too sweet. I could fix that if I owned an ice cream maker, but that's one of the reasons why I don't. Some of the others include storage space, freezer space, and available electrical outlets in the kitchen. If we had some ham, we could have some ham and eggs, if we had some eggs...

Onward, through the morass of meetings this week. One of them shouldn't be happening this week, but somebody got antsy and made me schedule it despite half the people who need to be there being unavailable. Makes no sense to me, but despite it giving me agita, it's not really my circus. All I can do is what I'm asked to do. So I do.
dchenes: (katana)
We missed another thunderstorm yesterday, but got a couple of minutes of absolute downpour and probably a rainbow (although I didn't go look out the living room window for it, because I forgot). It's warm enough for the quilt to come back off the bed and the windows to stay open all night. Good stuff.

Other good stuff: I have three new (to me) Steeleye Span songs I'm obsessed with and trying to learn. I didn't know they had an album based on Terry Pratchett, but they do and it's called Wintersmith. The three songs in question are You (which I thought was going to be about Granny Weatherwax's cat, but isn't), The Summer Lady, and We Shall Wear Midnight. The live version of We Shall Wear Midnight makes me cry occasionally. The first time I heard it, I thought it was the two versions of Tiffany talking to each other. When I found out it was Tiffany talking to Terry Pratchett, that got me. And yes, that counts as good stuff.

Let's see, other good stuff: I was inspired by the glass baubles I bought last weekend to excavate my office so as to have a place to put them. Decluttering is always good, and I ought to make more of a habit of it. What I really need is to sort through all (both of) the office bookshelves and figure out what's in there because it isn't somewhere else, and what's in there because it needs to be there, and what's in there that should be in the trash can. Maybe if I do that, there will be a place to put some more books. There are always some more books. (That fact also counts as good stuff.)

I seem to be in a mental state wherein wherever I am, I want to be somewhere else doing something else. Mostly, when I'm at work I want to be home having a cleaning fit, but when I'm home I want to be out enjoying the weather now that it's enjoyable. And I want to stop my first thought being "I've got all these things I want to get done; better go get coffee." I used to be able to get things done without having coffee first.
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