Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Damned if I do...

When I worked at the Health Science Campus doing cell culture, I worked for a woman widely known as Bitch B...  Unfortunately I didn't get the memo; my previous job ended when the money ran out and I was in a swivet to get another job before the mortgage came due.  The only revelation I got was that she wanted lots of extra time and dedication.  My job was for a group of 4 researchers combining their expertise and the Bitch was the primary investigator.  That alone should have warned me off, trying to balance my time between 4 separate people.  Anyway, there was another very junior researcher in Pathology who was very happy to get some technical chops to work on her project.  She needed cells that were primary cells and Dr.B generously provided a small amount of frozen cells that I had cultivated.  She and I met with B after she had gotten some very promising results and needed another bit of frozen cells to continue.  She was eager to continue ASAP and so I took one vial of frozen cells (out of a stock of 50+ vials) before our meeting and started them in culture.  After our meeting B wanted to talk to me, and I thought, "Uh oh" and she proceeded to tear me a new one.  "Those are MY cells and you are not to start them unless I say so".  I just shook my head and she said, "What does that mean???"  And I replied, I'm damned I do (put them to grow right away) and damned if I don't (hold up the other researcher  waiting for the cells to grow).  And B launched a tedious dressing down.  She even said that other people in the department complained that I was hard to get along with.  I said mildly, that if she asked "people in the department"  who was hard to get along with, it wouldn't be my name that was on their lips.  Then she continued into my time off, my attitude (boredom), and so on.  She was looming over me while I sat at the table, and so I stood.  I am 5-6 inches taller than B and she backed up quickly to continue her diatribe.  I just said ,"I don't need this crap..." and walked down to personnel and put in my job search for another position.  Two weeks later B told me the funding for my salary was gone, and so was I.  She gave me instructions for a couple of new experiments (that would take at least a month to complete if all went well), and I deliberately contaminated the flasks. And left on two weeks vacation before starting my new job in Pathology. Bitch.

Anyway, I don't know what brought all of that up, but seeing it here I felt anew the grief and hatred of those days.  I had just lost my mother to cancer and had to put my dad in a nursing home 40 miles away that I traveled every day since he was way too confused to live alone.  And so I had to juggle him, selling their house after an auction for their belongings, and a new job wasn't a big help there.  My new boss, thank god, was a kind and thoroughly organized guy.  Timing, everything is timing.

It has been raining here for days, but even with everything soggy, I am delighted that it is way too warm for it to be snow.  If only it would snow on the grass and leave the roads bare.  I am also aware that there is still a good bit of winter left.  Sigh.








Monday, February 03, 2020

Facebook can be pretty clever



Well here it is another Monday and my therapy went pretty well.  I am getting therapy on both knees (before it was just the one with the replacement knee) because all the support for most any movement involves putting all my (considerable) weight on the "good" knee which was feeling the burden.  So now it is readily apparent how far I have to go before I can walk without a walker or cane.  But I won't give up.  I wish my mother were still here, she had knee replacement done 10 years before she passed, and I wonder now that she never got out of her wheelchair, what she thought about me having the same procedure, and at what point did she give up on therapy?  I will never know.

The temperature today was a steady 60 degrees, for the third of Feb!  Before we moved here, we were  doing a look-see for N to check out his job, and the people he would be working with, while they got a look at him.  Anyway, our first night at the Holiday Inn it snowed buckets (and we were coming from San Fran), and the rental car did not have snow tires.  He called and they sent another car (while they probably thought he was being a wuss) and when they went to the first car to drive it away, it wouldn't start.  Click.  That was it.  Anyway, everyone remarked that it was their first snow that winter.  On February 5th.  It didn't make us feel any better.  Anyway, he took the job and retired 35 years later.  And we always had snow tires.  Chains even.  And we never got stuck.  Let's hear it for Subarus.

Around here they call student tires "snow tires".  That means they still have tread.

I've given up following the election news, and I won't donate any more money either.  I just don't have that energy anymore, and I am sure, in my heart, that the miserable wretch in office will win.  My question is, after the end of his second term if he will actually leave, or will he declare some 'trumped' up emergency that he will stay to be a dictator?  And even if he does leave, will our country ever be the same?  Will the last honest person in Washington please turn out the lights when she leaves?

Who did you think I meant?  We will see.

I am too tired to go any further, so thanks for tuning in and reading this far.  Take care!






Saturday, January 25, 2020

Hazards

One of the crosstitch floss tube contributors recently posted about having a near miss when she followed a truck on the interstate that was carrying loose boards.  She thought that the load was not very well tied down, and the part sticking over the tailgate slid and bumped and such every time it met a rough stretch.  Soon enough the entire load slipped  off the truck and onto the freeway where everyone ducked and swerved to get out of the path.  How hard would have been to flip a loop or two of rope around the load?  It reminded me of one time in San Francisco when I was on the freeway, 75 MPH and 4 lanes in each direction bumper to bumper, following a garbage truck.  Attached to each rear corner was a hook, and on the hook was the BIG trash cans where they would collect bags, etc., to throw in the back of the truck.  As I followed I could see the can on the left was bouncing around.  I had to stay in that lane so I could use the upcoming off ramp.  About the time it took me to write this, the left side Big can bounced off the truck and began to rolling toward me.  There was no place to go; the can rolled toward me at 60 MPH  and just before it would have smashed me and my little Miata it hit a bump in the road.  The can sailed up above me and then down behind me where it became the problem of the guy behind me.  I never saw what the consequences were for the car behind me, my exit came up (at last) and I scooted off.  That sure was the cause of a few gray hairs right there.

At dinner last night we started talking of road mishaps we've seen or heard of.  I can vouch for the one where a very large truck exited the interstate, and as the driver was making a wide curve on the exit ramp, his truck sslloowwly tipped over spilling his load of -- garbage!  What was even worse, the garbage was on its way to a land fill here in WV from  New York City.  Heads were flying over that, no one wanted to confess to being behind the deal.  Worse yet, with the truck laying on its side, they passed a cable around the trailer and attempted to pull it back upright.  Instead, the cable made a nice clean cut through the truck, spilling more garbage and now they had two loads to clear up.  The whole fiasco was easily seen from the highway, and it took days and days to get all the garbage picked up.  And all the rhetoric about WV (Wild and Wonderful) becoming a dumping ground for big city garbage, that was the last time for that arrangement.

The second spill was of a tractor trailer load of dice that scattered the payload everywhere -- they acted like ball bearings.  And the one when the load was chickens.  They weren't hurt, but they never did find them all.  The highway patrol shut down the interstate and used big sheets of plastic to try to corral the bird brains off the highway where they could be grabbed, with limited success.  And finally there was the truck pulling a stock trailer of cattle.  They hit a big bump and the connection stayed fine, but the door at the back popped open.  The driver didn't notice until he spotted cattle in his sideview mirrors, trying to chase him down.  No fools they, get back in the box...

C and I have been making progress clearing out my closet.  So far we have done all the jeans and slacks, donating about 50% of the closet.  Some with tags still on.  I dumped lots of jeans in odd colors, and anything too tired looking went also.  We were pretty tired ourselves and will have to pick another day to work on the shirts and blouses, of which there are (gulp) hundreds.  The tag thing is pretty  simple; I would buy things out of season to save money, and when the season rolled around, I will have forgotten they were there.  The floor plans of modular homes all have WICs (walk in closets) but they aren't very large, no matter how big the entire home is.  Hence the purging.

I was really really sleepy yesterday morning, literally falling asleep in my corn flakes.  I asked C if he had given me Ambien by mistake, but when he checked, it was Friday night pills I got instead of Friday morning's.  The real culprit was Xanax.  I slept another 4 hours after breakfast, but was OK by dinner time when we went to Atrias.  We had a slice of carrot cake for dessert and split it three ways, it was so huge.  And so good.


Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Gym or jim?


I always felt like I should get credit for going to the gym... not exercising, only seated at the smoothie  bar.  Doesn't that count?  I was at the gym for 2 hours...

Had to cancel the therapy on Monday, there wasn't much snow fallen (especially for a Subaru), but the driveway had a layer of ice exposed when the driveway was swept.  So the problem was getting me safely in the car.  The Sube could pull into the garage, but the only door that had enough clearance to open was the driver's door - if the car was backed into the garage the passenger door would open, but I couldn't get C out to help me with my walker.  This is why I scheduled my surgery in June (of 2017), but the final surgery was in Feb.(of 2018)  The best laid plans...

I did get my nails done yesterday, my friend had her husband bring her here.  She is more skittish than me about snow.

I am still pondering the move to a mobile home next year.  I found a web page for some floor plans that included the prices.  Wow!  The floor plan I favor is listed as starting at  $140K, which isn't bad for stick-built home, but come on, mobile homes?!  And half of our furniture won't fit.  I will get a better feel for that once I get a floor plan that is drawn to 1/4" to one foot, so I can use my furniture/kitchen/master bedroom models and see what isn't going to fit.  I am already planning what I will leave behind, once the moving is done.  I don't figure I will regret selling off things via auction, I have far far too much stuff that inertia has made me procrastinate selling while there is still time.  My Mom and Dad did the same when they moved here from Ft. Lauderdale, when I sold the house here there were boxes that had never been unpacked.  All my past  moves for us were done on Uncle Sam's dime, so a reasonable cost was no concern.

If I move to town, I won't have to worry about snow, they get very little being in a valley next to the river.

I have been sketching some this last week.  The thing is, I have to see a photo or print to sketch.  At one time I could draw from life but now I can't get the image down.  And drawing with charcoal or graphite is a lot different; for one, no erasing, it just won't come up.  If I ever do something appealing I will post it here.  It will be a while.

Time to publish this and get some lunch.  Bye!



Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Kindle-ing the written word



I bought a Kindle Gen 2 ebook ($8), and then couldn't get it to ask for (my) connection.  I did the same thing years ago when I bought my uncle's Kindle, and I don't remember any problem changing the owner to myself with that Kindle.  Anyway I looked online and found someone with the same problem, and the process was very straight forward.  Even the steps looked familiar, so I tried it and it worked like a charm.  The only hiccup  was that the battery was in need of a charge, but it came with a cable and so now I have two.  It is so nice to get something to work like it should.  My son tried the laborious method, and found that the Kindle is so old they wouldn't work.  Anyway, the name it is registered with now is M***'s 6th Kindle (blush).  I inherited my husband's Kindles (2) as well as my own so I have one gen 2, a  paper white and one large screen kindle which is very nice.  They read to me, shop with me, and do several "beta" programs.  The only problem is remembering which Kindle I want my selection to be on.  Hurting for choice.  One lives in my purse, one on my bedside table, one in the living room (drat) and so forth.  It is easier when I don't have to remember where I had it last.  In theory.

My psych doctor is messing around with my meds and it is wreaking havoc on my sleep cycle; I have to sleep all the time right now.  At least I don't have to go to work anymore, yeah.  Retirement is grand, I wish I had been able to coast along all these years.

I bought a selection of drawing pencils/charcoal sticks, etc., to keep me involved for now at least.  I used to be able to draw OK from a photograph, and I tried to buy a movable articulated horse figure, as I get confused when the legs are close together, but on Amazon they are $60! and I don't know if it would even work.  The exact same thing of a human figure is $10 - $12!  Supply and demand.  When I was in junior high the art teacher browbeat me into thinking how things, like trees, really look on paper.  I learned a lot from her that year.  I am sure they don't take art classes now except for an elective, probably in high school.  There are no sketches on the bulletin boards in elementary school where we go to vote, when it would benefit drawing skills the most.  We didn't let our kids attend that school, back in the day.  One voting day, of course right near Thanksgiving Day, there was a display of paper leaves with wishes the students had made (anonymously) and they broke my heart.  Wishes like "I wish I could stay here forever"  and "I wish my dad would come back" and" I wish I lived with Mommy and Daddy again" and "I wish I could see my sister" and on and on.  My kids went to Parochial school.  I knew they would have to face many difficult times in life, but please, not as a 6 year old.

I am currently reading Beginner's Guide to the End, Practical Advice  to Living Life and Facing Death.  I haven't gotten very far yet, but it reads in a compassionate and straightforward way.
It is the Kindle I just rejuvenated,  all charged now and I downloaded this book.  It came with a nice leather case too.  And it bills to our credit card.

That is it for today, hope this hasn't been too boring.  I can only write about the past, because the current life is totally the same day by day.  Talk about boring.

Bye!










Saturday, January 11, 2020

All gone (snow)

I am starting this with a merry Christmas, although Christmas (or your favorite holiday) is over for the most part.  When I was in high school back in the dark ages, the Jewish students (a high percentage of students) got the Christmas holiday in the scheduled calendar, as well as the Jewish holidays.  There were Jewish teachers too, so we secular students attended our classes with 50% missing students AND substitute teachers as well.  I never questioned the number of religious days off, but looking back, I realize why there were so many students attending holidays.  The conclusion (for me now) was that the missing students were largely living with Jewish parents located in Miami Beach, where I was in North Miami, a cultural wasteland,  with parents that never claimed a religion affiliation.  At that time, the striving in academic venues reflected parents who wanted doctors or lawyers for their male children, and female offspring were encouraged to marry one of the high achieving  male students.  They tore down that school a couple of years ago and built a new one.  In the original school,  there was a large mosaic of the mascot and school just inside the doors to the school, and someone who stepped on the mosaic amid the hordes of incoming students were (verbally) chastised by the other students.  I wonder if they saved the design for the new school.

I finally realized that my chair here at the keyboard had to be replaced, as it listed to one side and made horrible shrieks when you wiggled a little bit.  I ordered one from Paticos, but I fear they may not be an actual source of furniture.  Should have ordered from Wayfair.  But come on, a desk chair isn't actually a high price item.  I have sent them an email and a voice message but no return call to me.  Meanwhile I am using a dining room chair so my body isn't dumped to the floor with chair wheels in my face.  Update:  I got an email from Paticos that said Sorry! We are out of stock for this item, refund soon.  So I quickly went to Wayfair and ordered the same chair, only twice the price of the other one.  At least Wayfair is reliable.

Finally got my hair cut, it is really short, but better than wispy bits poking out everywhere. Tomorrow I  hope to get my hair colored.  And no, I am not an original redhead, but when I turned gray, red looked much better than blonde with my coloring, to cover the gray.  When I had chemo for a year, not only did my hair fall out, but it stayed out for months.  I got two wigs, one blonde and one red, so I could try out both looks.  Red won.








Friday, January 10, 2020

Wicked 4 letter word (snow!)

It has been weeks since I have posted on here, I apologize if you have been checking in to see if anything resembling a post has once again been written.  Life just got in the way.  I will try to be more consistent in my posts.

I  have been  able to put on a regular shoe now that the swelling has gone down.  Still I need to walk every few days to get where I don't have to watch ever step.  I have been waiting to see if the swelling has gone for (mostly) good.  I credit my Ultram for the reduction, it is the only new item in my daily pharm.  I have seen other times when the swelling has retreated only to run again in a few days.  The
Ultram is now brand name instead of generic;  the neurologist recommended  it, and said the generic was a steroid and hard on the kidneys, while the brand was neither.

I spent the 8th, yesterday, in the hospital, what fun.  I think I  would have been admitted but I refused.  I think I will not go unless there is a compelling reason to stay.  Every time I have gone in I came home with a violent respiratory infection, so that a simple stay for "observation ",when right now there is a vicious virus going around the county which I do not need.