So, first off, Shana Tova (or, as heidi8 pointed out might be a better phrasing: Shana svira) to all my Jewish friends, as well as my entire maternal family (not that they're reading this, lol). Definitely DEFINITELY hoping for a happier year for EVERYONE. (Except Trump and his sycophants.)
I had planned an update last night, but in the wake of the soul-crushing news about RBG, it didn't seem right. But I'm in a particularly craptastic mood right now and don't give a shit about tact, so ... update it is! :P
(Side note: I wouldn't have found out as quickly as I did about RBG because I was doing some school-related stuff, except that MiniPlu had a zillion updates from her college peers and checked her phone at work while they were closing up for the night, and then texted me, simply, "We screwed without RBG." And that's when I knew. I raced to CNN.com for confirmation, and literally gasped aloud in horror to see it in giant, undeniable headlines. Just ... no words.)
Rob continues to recover, got his 46 staples removed on Fri, but is still mostly spending his time stretched back on the recliner in the family room, as sitting fully upright pulls on his incision. But he's out of sick time, so he's back to work, at least as much as he can, on Monday. Thankfully, his job has always been from home, pre-Covid, so he's fully set up for that.
I handed in my first tech assignment, a multi-step but fairly straightforward trio of simple, table-based webpages, and got a 92%, which pisses me off, given that a) the median was 97% and b) there's really no reason NOT to get 100% on this one (whereas future assignments are going to get more complex). I'm pissed because he took off some points for what I feel were unfair reasons - nowhere do I remember seeing these little bits specified - but there WAS a minor thing I did actually overlook, so then I'm just mad at myself for that. We ARE allowed to fix and resubmit, so hopefully I'll get full credit in the end, but I'm still mad. Grrr.
Also grumpy because Two continues to argue about SO FREAKIN' MUCH. I mean, if the kid has to be stubborn, why can't he be stubborn about achieving a goal, and work harder at life? Sigh. No matter what you say to him, he insists on his POV even when it's so very clearly inadequate or incorrect. I keep telling him he's going to end up being a Trump supporter with the attitude he has, his absolute refusal to see sense on so many issues, his disinterest in being an educated consumer or familiarity with current events. I mean, except for his stance on LGBT issues and race, he is absolutely in position to be sucked in by wack jobs like Trump fans, and to be just as determined to ignore FACTS when they're staring him right in the face. It's so, SO frustrating and disheartening and after multiple arguments tonight, I had just HAD IT.
And I'm grumpy and terrified about the way this country is going. And I've developed arthritic pains in my hips which are hurting even when I'm lying down; my right hip is worse. My left shoulder (probably rotator cuff) also hurts more, which means, as a side sleeper, I'm now screwed in both directions. And there's nothing really special Will and I can do for our anniversary next weekend. And I have no idea what I'm doing for an assignment due that day, either. And our house is a pit, but nobody has time to do anything about it. And there are fifty thousand projects needing doing, but Will and Rob always insist on doing it themselves so they just sit there instead of coughing up extra money to HIRE SOMEONE. Will has been stressed lately, too, but when he's frustrated, he just acts like a PITA. He's not outright grumpy necessarily, but he'll constantly give smart-ass answers to everything, which he's prone to doing anyway (not one of his more endearing qualities) but it's just been constantly lately, so even though I know he needs comforting, what I really want to do is throttle him. Could you just give a normal response, please, kthx.
I substituted twice at the middle school this past week, once on Mon and once on Fri. On Mon I was with the slower kids, where they already tend to be in much smaller pull-out groups of half a dozen or so, but with splitting the kids into two alternating at home/at school groups, plus the kids who are virtual full time, I had only two kids apiece for each of my three classes. (The fourth class was unassigned, so I helped the librarian organize and shelve all the books that had been returned over the summer.) On Friday I was with regular kids, so there were about a dozen kids per class. (Again, for my unassigned block, I made further inroads on the summer backlog.)
The way the middle school has tackled the issue of reducing interaction is to put the kids into "cohorts" which pretty much stay put all day, and the teachers move from class to class. The only time the kids move is for their elective block. (I saw a lot of teachers with those little rolly craft carts, which they were using to transport their materials from room to room.) Right now everyone is on early dismissal, so I don't know yet how they're handling lunch. (Full days start the last week of Sept, after Yom Kippur.) Anyway, the kids are all well behaved at the moment, wearing their masks and being pretty quiet. Because, under normal circumstances, teachers are simultaneously teaching the in-person students AND streaming to the at-home students, and substitutes don't have their own staff laptops, the decision was made to just have the kids be assigned independent work whenever a sub has to come in. It meant all I did for most of the day was walk around class to make sure people were working, answer a bare handful of questions, and read my book. :P But it was good to work again for the first time in literally six months, not counting the few days I did inventory for the library in July.
Speaking of books, I finished reading Swordheart, which was a birthday gift from hamsterwoman. In short: I loved it. Adventure, romance and a generous dose of humor, thrown in rather like Douglas Adams or PTerry would do it. I will definitely be interested in reading about the next Sword's story, whenever that comes out. hamsterwoman, did you read the Clockwork Boys books, too? How were they?
My only complaint about Swordheart was that it was printed on high-quality heavy paper, making it hard to hold with just one hand while I was reading/walking the dog, lol.
The veggie garden is mostly done at this point. There's still some straggling tomatoes, and the bell peppers/capsicum took forever to really ripen, so they're still doing ok. I have carrots and potatoes to pull. But otherwise, most things have reached the end of their lifespan, it seems. Well, less work for me to keep up. :P
I'm debating volunteering to work the polls on election day. I've never done it before. But it feels so SO important this year. It involves working from 5:45a to 8:30p (although they imply that partial-day shifts MIGHT be available), and I'm not sure if I can spare that much time. Also, because I live on the edge of my county, there's no guarantee I'd be assigned to work anywhere NEAR where I normally am, which would kind of suck. But I'm still thinking about it.
And, finally, here's a meme, which I stole from spiffikins:
1. A goal you reached
Ever? This year? Well, I got into library school. :) For past goal achievements, I made it into the chamber choir in my high school for my last two years. I worked my ass off to pull my GPA up enough in college, after getting a C my freshman year, to graduate cum laude. I passed my driving test on the first try. Uh ... that’s enough bragging for now?
2. If you could learn any language, which one would you choose?
I know I should say “Spanish” because it honestly is pretty darn useful here in the US, but I also confess that it’s ... too ordinary ... for me. I seem to be drawn to less common (to Americans) languages. So, I’d probably wish for fluency in ASL, or to learn Korean, Mandarin Chinese, and/or Dutch.
3. What is your favourite thing to do on vacation?
Depends on where I’m going. If I’m going someplace tropical: lie by the pool or beach and read, with some dips into the water to cool off, or to see some of the natural splendour of the area. If it’s someplace more urban, it would be to see many of the museums and other typical sights, but also to get an idea of how the locals live, too.
4. Do you consider yourself to be an empathetic person?
Yes, with a caveat: I can also be a really practical person who gets irritated when people are being ridiculous.
5. Is there such a thing as too much of a good thing?
6. What is your favourite time of day?
To do what? Be productive? (Usually morning or early evening.) To admire, visually? (Sunrise or sunset.) To exercise? (Whatever time of day is most temperate.)
7. What is something that always puts you in a good mood?
8. Do you find it easy to express your feelings?
Probably too much, lol.
9. Who can you turn to when you need advice or support?
Husband, mom or best friend Scott (although, admittedly, I don’t get to communicate too much with him these days). Mostly Will, probably.
10. If you were given one million dollars but you had to give half of it away, what would you do with the half you gave away?
Send needy kids to college. Donate to my alma mater and to the upkeep on my great-grandma’s house. Help out a few super-close friends who never seem to be able to catch a break.
11. If you were president, what one thing would you like to change in this country?
I would LIKE to change the extreme political polarization going on, but I don’t think that’s something most Presidents can really influence that much, alas. I’d like to reinstate trans rights that have been eroded, focus on the environment, make healthcare truly affordable, oh, gosh, so much.
12. Do you ever remember what you dream?
Sometimes. (Man, last night was weird.)
13. Have you ever made friends with someone unexpected?
My husband, tbh. If you’d asked me to describe the person I’d end up with, I wouldn’t have picked someone into cars, and not really into most of my own hobbies ... and yet, we really work well together.
14. Are you the kind of person who likes to look back or look ahead?
15. What is the greatest challenge your generation faces?
Civility. Well, and climate change.
16. Would you rather give a gift or receive a gift?
Give! I mean, it’s wonderful to receive, but I love giving gifts to people, especially when you hit on something you really think they’ll appreciate.
17. Do you believe aliens exist?
It’s pretty ridiculous to assume that in all the entire universe, we’re the only form of sentient life. Whether or not aliens have visited earth, though – I’m not sure. I remain open to the possibility – which is pretty much my view on ghosts, as well.
18. What is the hardest job in the world?
I’m sure there are some that are absolutely back-breaking, the sort where your lifespan is considerably shorter just for doing that work. Like ... coal mining or something. Morally, medical work is probably pretty stressful. Being President must be EXTREMELY stressful and why anyone really WANTS the job is beyond me. For ordinary folks, though, I’d say: waiting tables. Keeping track of multiple parties, all those orders, everyone at different stages of the process, who wanted ketchup, who needs drink refills, and carrying it all back and forth? Yikes.
19. What is one thing that anyone in the world would be truly happy to have?
Someone to mutually love (even platonically) and trust. And safe shelter/adequate food/clean water.
20. If you could become friends with any one person in the world, who would you choose?
Pete and Chasten Buttigieg (which, ok, is cheating because that’s two guys, but they’re a package deal). Honestly, they seem like the kind of guys you’d like to have a game night with, and just chat, you know?
21. What is the most valuable thing you own?
My retirement investments? Otherwise, probably my collectable coins (inherited from my grandfather and dad).
22. What is the best thing about getting older?
I understand better how the world works, and have more experiences to draw on.
23. How frequently do you use social media?
24. What is the coolest technological advancement you’ve seen in your life?
Probably the Internet – and, along similar lines, smartphones.
25. Were you ever friends with someone wasn’t who you thought they were?
I don’t ... think so? I mean, there are always people online who turn out to be pulling a fast one on people (certain dramas in the old school HP fandom come to mind) but I was never super-close to those people.
26. How frequently do you give time or money to charity?
MiniPlu and I used to volunteer regularly for a dog rescue for elderly dogs, but stopped doing that when she ran out of free time. In terms of monetary donations, I mostly give to Camp Aranu’tiq and my alma mater.
27. If you met a magic genie who would grant you three wishes, what would you wish for?
1) Remove Two’s learning disabilities and turn him into a person who was willing to work for something he wanted.
2) Change history just enough so that Trump would never have run for President. Like, not even RUN, at all, so that he would never have turned a whole bunch of people into crazypants wackjobs.
3) Make it so Coronavirus never existed, nor that anything else on a similar caliber would ever have happened, anywhere.
28. Write about a time when you felt successful.
Replacing (and later fixing but without replacing) the drain-plug thing in the bathroom sink, which involves taking all the pipework below the sink apart.
29. How frequently do you take photos?
Now that we have decent cellphone cameras, pretty much daily. Mostly of adorable pets, but also sometimes things I see when out shopping that I want to show someone, or ... whatever.
30. Do you care about political issues?
Oh, heck, yes. But I also confess that for the past few months, all I can manage to do is skim headlines because everything is just so damn depressing.
And, ugh, I've just lost another half an hour wandering around the Internet, trying to find something positive. Giving up now, going to bed.