Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Levitate Me

I have a little recommended reading today.  I read fairly often and though I think it should change its name to xotroll there are a few genuinely good writers on the site.  My favorite is Louise Hung, who writes a series called Creepy Corner with some seriously weird anecdotes.  Take the one about Carl Tanzler and his immortal beloved, dear me.  Anyyywaayyy, Louise also writes lots of other stuff about her life that usually puts a smile on my face.  She did a piece about losing her pet cat which resonated with me, not because I'm in mourning, but because I too have a lot of resistance to sadness and wanting to express it.

One of my friends told me about a book last weekend called The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel Van der Kolk that I haven't read yet but I think might be useful.  It's about PTSD, which I'd had four years ago and has come back off and on since the holidays.  I've never seriously read much about it because I wasn't even sure it applied to me before, but now I would like to understand it better.

The truck for the Vietnam Vets of America is coming tomorrow to get some more donations from me.  If I need to donate it's nice to not use Goodwill as much.  VVA will take bags right off the porch and they leave a bag for the next time around!  They'll also contact you with a postcard when they are planning to be in your area again.  Between last weekend's comix show and the bags of clothes I'm getting rid of I'm making lots of room.  Property is theft, dude.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Someday we'll look back and laugh pt. 623

Stuff has been breaking, falling, getting lost this past week.  The shower sprayed water all over the bathroom because the head was coming loose.  My house key's loop broke so it won't stay on the ring anymore.  I can't find my drawing materials so I can work on my next page for Vision Quest #5.  I hope I didn't leave them at my parents' house in Olympia.

Oh yeah, and this happened three nights in a row:

One side of the bed kept falling off completely, one time with me in it.  I thought I had given it a good temporary repair, but no dice.  After getting rid of the carpet, I'd been scooting the bed around a bit more and it has a heavier mattress on it now.  The futon is soooo heavy, it's much harder to move than the other mattress was.  The books in the photo are there in my attempt to prop up the slats and rails so I could put the legs and side rail back on.  I finally got some metal brackets and secured all four corners of the bed inside and out.  It's been a few days and it seems to be ok for now.

Between stripping the bedroom carpet and being ill a few weeks ago, the rest of the house has become a bloody fright.  My aim for today is to get some semblance of order back into the common area.

Yesterday was another full day at the East Portland Eagles Lodge with Frankenstein's Comic Book Swap from 11 to 6, and Comix Thing from 9 to midnight.  The highlight of the daytime portion was when these two old guys, who have been my customers since the earliest Frankenstein's shows, bought all of my cutout color newspaper strips.  I threw in the plastic containers for free.  I gave them a great deal because I like them, and also I was hoping someone would want to take all the strips at once.  Win-win!!  The highlight of Comix Thing was getting to DJ again!  One of my friends asked me to DJ an upcoming event for this year's Portland Zine Symposium last night, so it seems I have a future.  The evening had an awkward moment when a man tabling next to me suddenly began critiquing my playlist and demanding to hear the Rolling Stones, in the midst of an anti-Republican rant.  Also he did some air guitar stuff to Stereolab, which is never ok. But all in all it was super fun and I've been invited to DJ the next Comix Thing.

I guess that's all the news I have right now.  I'm kind of tired of music for today, understandably, so I'm listening to this at the moment.  Happy Easter!


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The Ugly Stick

On Sunday I took up the carpet in my bedroom, and the floor was done as of about 9pm Monday night.  Here's what it looked like BEFORE, after I took out most of the furniture:
Here's what it looked like around dinnertime, while the quinoa was cooking on the stove:
And here it was right before bedtime Sunday night, after most of the staple removal all over the floor:

The carpet-tearing was the easy part.  On Monday night I went around the edges of the room removing the tack strips that were nailed down.  Once I did the first three to five linear feet, I got a lot faster at it.  I was done with all that in about two hours, while watching a dvd of Law & Order Criminal Intent, season 2.  Look how much bigger my little room looks now!
My unprofessional advice for this job is mostly common sense stuff.  Protect your eyes, nose and mouth.  Weird shit flies straight up at your face, including rusty nails.  Who knew my bedroom was Tetanus City?  There's microscopic stuff everywhere, even after vacuuming, and dirty little staples abound, so for God's sake wear shoes at all times! 

Cleanup was a constant process.  I vacuumed after every step, then I wiped down the boards with a hardwood floor spray that my mom gave me last year when we did the living room.

I was able to sleep in my own room last night, with the inflatable mattress on the bed frame.  While I was moving the bed frame a piece fell out and hit me right on the forehead, so by all rights I should be in the hospital now.  My pupils are the same size so I guess I'm all right.

I ran into a friend who is moving out of his house, and who might be getting a dumpster for garbage that previous roommates have left over the years.  I offered to pay for part of it if he and his girlfriend let me dump the carpet scraps.  That plan is still up in the air.

I'm having the mattress recycled.  I found a place online that will pick it up from the house for a nominal fee.  I don't think I can get this one down to the curb.  It's bigger and heavier than the average mattress because it's some kind of fancy built-in boxspring contraption.  I'm sleeping on the inflatable mattress until I get the new futon.

I'm doing a little better than I was a couple weeks ago but the facts remain the same.  I've been trying to see my friends as much as possible and let them know what's going on with me.  The load is a little bit lighter, I think. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

The Future is Now

I'm recovering from the flu right now.  I'm able to go to work but I'm still (mostly dry) coughing and kind of congested. It's the end of the day now and I can honestly say I feel better than when I left home this morning.

My get-well grocery shopping list last night consisted of lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, a nice change from the generic chicken soup and raisin bran I was having for four days.  I had no appetite and I lost an alarming amount of weight in less than a week, mostly from dehydration I think.  Getting all this nice stuff to eat made me think of something important.  In all these years I haven't talked about my allergies and asthma on Fitzrovians, which have affected me my entire life and have almost everything to do with my indoor environment.  Why hasn't this come up before?  I'm in a living allergen bath on a daily basis, and it was worse when I was still spending so much time in the basement. 

When I was small I had severe allergies to foods and fragrances, though thankfully the reactions were pretty rare.  I had my first allergen test when I was about 9 (fun fact: the hospital that tested me was the future headquarters of Amazon in Seattle WA) and I got my first asthma meds.  I found out that some of my triggers were dust, dust mites, and mold.  My mom took a lot of care helping me clean my room and keep it vacuumed and dusted, and keeping things tidy so they don't lay around gathering dust.
I'm a dust mite!
As I was gathering my food yesterday, which was picked specifically to help me get stronger, I realized that I don't take half the care I used to with these things and now I have sleep issues revolving around breathing problems.  My pillows are old, old, old and they say that old pillows are mostly dust mites after a while.  I hardly vacuum under the bed and there's still a lot of old carpet and feathers from a down comforter about.  It's pretty clear what I need to do about this.

Many years ago, I gave up drinking milk or using it on cereal.  I do use some dairy occasionally, but my allergies have been soooo much better since that time.  I also find that soda and really sugary or floury treats make me stuffed up.  I notice things like this but ignore what sent me to the doctor for answers in the first place.

I'm going to get some new hypoallergenic pillows ASAP, when I don't have other groceries to carry home and it's not raining.  Also, I'm looking at getting a futon mattress to replace the old lumpy one I've had for years and years.  It used to be great, now I don't know anymore.  They're expensive but I'm going to have it another couple decades, right?  And remember what I said about getting rid of the carpet in that other post.  That's still happening.

Well, I guess you want some music after all that.  I'm kind of obsessed with this song.  It's led me to find some other good Brazilian music so maybe it will bring you some nice things too.