Archive for the ‘life’ Category

I am at 85,000 words in the current novel and chugging out about 1,000 words a night heading for completion. This obviously doesn’t leave much time for posting stuff to the blog.

I’ll try to do more here after I finish the novel but can’t issue many guarantees. Meanwhile, here, have a cat. He generously left me two inches of my office chair to sit on.

— Badtux the Cat-owned Penguin


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Pleasant dream

A dream I had.

I was in a college dormitory, down on the bottom floor where the lobby and break room and storage room were, and a girl comes up to me. She has shoulder-length blond hair and is wearing a t-shirt and jeans and sneakers, she looks like a youth triathlon athlete that I encountered once when I was young actually ie. not obviously buff but tanned from outdoors activities and clearly not a couch potato, and she says “Some of us were wondering if you’d like to go bike riding with us.”

And I’m like, “okay. But my bike is in storage.”
“That’s okay, we have a spare bike.”
“Sure,” I say, and I run up to my room real quick and grab a bike helmet and run down and she and three or four other people have assembled in front of the dorm and sure enough there’s a spare bike waiting for me.

So we ride and the others get ahead as I’m struggling on this old heavy POS bike and she’s falling behind to ride beside me and we talk about various stuff, and eventually after an hour or so we end up back at the dorm. And I did something that I didn’t do back when things like this actually happened, which was say “I’m sort of Aspie, I don’t pick up on social cues, you’re going to have to tell me what this was all about and what you’d like to do next.”

And that was the end of the dream as the alarm clock went off.

All in all, a far more pleasant one than my usual ones, which tend to involve zombies or robotic terminators out to exterminate humanity as a society of time travelers attempts to foil the robot apocalypse or etc.

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Back from the desert

I saw: Old miner’s cabins. Old mines. Indian petroglyphs. A lot of backcountry that I’d never seen before. Also some sad sights, like a cabin where I stayed roughly ten years ago now being half-collapsed and totally trashed :(.

Normal posting shall resume shortly.

— Badtux the Desert Penguin

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Of the 15070 murders that happened in 2016 where we know what weapon was used to kill, 11004 were committed with firearms. Over 70% were committed with handguns and 30% with long guns (or unknown kind of gun).

“Guns don’t kill, people do!” is the NRA talking point. But the numbers are clear: People with guns kill a lot more people than people without guns. Sure, you can hit someone over the head with a big rock or a hammer and kill them. But only 472 people managed to do so in 2016. Sure, you can poison someone. But only 11 people were murdered with poison in 2016. Guns just are super effective at killing people. In fact, the only other method of killing people that broke the four digit mark was murder by knife, which killed 1604 people in 2016 — a significantly smaller number than 11004. (Which, BTW, is why I don’t complain when cops kill someone who’s coming at them with a knife — it’s a deadly weapon, albeit only 1/10th as deadly as a gun in the big picture).

So what’s the NRA response to the reality that people with guns kill a lot more people than people without guns?


So it goes. It isn’t as if anything’s going to be done. I almost didn’t even bother posting about the 19 year old MAGAt who murdered 17 people at Parkland High School in Florida, including fourteen students. Because what’s the point? It’s not as if anything’s going to be done. This uniquely deadly weapon, the gun, will still be widely available to any looney who decides to kill someone, regardless of whatever I post.

So fuck it. I’m going to watch videos of Chloe Kim pulling off back-to-back 1080’s.

She reminds me of a friend of mine, who is also short and Asian and a snowboarder, albeit somewhat older (in her late 50’s). If they’d had snowboarding in the Olympics thirty years ago, I like to think that my friend would have been up there… as it is, she’s slowed down a bit in her late 50’s, as have all of us. She still snowboards though… heckuva lot better than I ever did, or ever will.

– Badtux the Fact-based Penguin

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Death used to be a big deal. The whole family would gather at a church, while the deceased’s corpse rested in a coffin at the front. There would be lots of flowers all around. A preacher would say some words. There might be a hymn played or performed. Then everybody would troop out to the graveyard to plant the corpse, and afterwards withdraw to the home belonging to the nearest next of kin, bringing along potluck dishes to feed the hoard. Folding tables might be set up on the lawn to hold the food, and folding chairs brought out from all around as people sat around talking about the deceased and catching up on family business. Then everybody would go home, until the next time.

But that was in a time of connection, when families were large and connected with each other, before the nuclear family blew up our society and turned it into isolated islands. Sunday I went to a “Celebration of Life” for a friend who died unexpectedly. A “Celebration of Life” is a California thing, I guess, where people get together with pictures of the deceased and talk about him and view pictures of his life. This was at the shop of an auto restoration business whose owners had met my friend via our Jeep club. There was no body present, no minister, no flowers, none of the trappings of the traditional Death industry. One of the members of the Jeep club is a caterer, and he catered some goodies to eat while we remembered our friend. And that is that. No children. No wife. His only living relative an older sister, who spoke of her memories. A girlfriend spoke of her memories. A street preacher who was the husband of a woman who worked at the shop and had visited my friend in the hospital spoke of his memories. No visiting a grave. He was cremated, and basically tossed to the winds.

That is our society today. Cremated, and tossed to the winds.

My mother was an only child. My father was an only child. My brother and I were their only children, and neither of us have children, though my brother has step-children. I guess I can leave whatever to the oldest of my brother’s stepchildren if my brother predeceases me, as is likely since my brother is younger than I am but lives in Louisiana, where people die on average ten years sooner than here in California. But when I die… it is likely that the story will be the same. Except I doubt that there will be forty people who show up to share memories of me. I doubt there will be anyone at all.

Because that is how we live, and that is how we die, in this time of societal dissolution and isolation.

– Badtux the Sombre Penguin

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It’s as if TMF has his own napkin and place setting at the dinner table, LOL.

It has been 36 hours since The Mighty One’s last insulin shot, which was 0.25u of Lantus. He had been on 0.5u for the 10 days preceding that, 1u for a week before that, and 2u for 5 days immediately after diagnosis where his blood sugar had measured 400+ on the lab test that diagnosed him as diabetic.

His blood sugar before his evening meal was 57 according to my Relion Confirm meter (which I’ve verified works by testing it on myself, though of course it reads low on cats). This morning, 24 hours after his last shot and an hour after he ate a meal, it was 71.

In short, it appears that my cat’s diabetes is now diet-controlled thanks to the Catkins Diet — as close to zero carb as I can manage. All I have to do is feed him very expensive wet food (he refuses to eat the cheap Fancy Feast, sigh!) and very expensive mail order diabetic kibbles (they aren’t sold in local stores), and voila! No more insulin shots.

Not that TMF cares about the insulin shots anyhow. He mostly ignored them, unless I accidentally hit something I shouldn’t have with the needle, at which point he growled at me until I took the needle out and stuck it some place better. That was only a couple of times though. Now, the blood glucose testing, that’s a royal PITA, TMF is a mellow baby but that uses every bit of his patience. I’m just glad he’s a nice cat instead of one of those hissy howly kinda cats.

BTW, here is what $70 worth of cat food and treats look like (the treats are freeze-dried chicken and fish chunk, zero carbs). No, I’m not joking. $70.

The red wine below the shelf is for me. TMF gets the good stuff. Sigh.

– Badtux the Cat-spoiling Penguin

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I added sparkles to my latest batch of home-made chocolate chip cookies (made to the Toll House recipe). Just because I wanted something more… festive… since my Christmas plans got cancelled in order to take care of my sick cat. Sigh. Oh well, Christmas plans can happen next year, while my cat likely won’t.

– Badtux the Cookie Penguin

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