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Quick Note

I appreciate the responses I’ve received to my blog posts so far.  They are encouraging and uplifting, and really mean a lot to me.  Thank you.

I know these entries have been real downers.  It’s not my intention for this entire blog to be garbage dump of negativity.  However, lately I’ve been dealing with more internal negativity than usual and I’m finding that this is becoming a very helpful and healthy outlet.  Thank you for taking time to read.

Invisible Demon

I have anxiety.  It isn’t rational.  It can’t always be explained.  It is real.

Yesterday my family met up with my aunt/uncle and cousins at a nice restaurant to celebrate some birthdays (mine included).  I sat there, mostly quiet, for what felt like hours, although it had only been a short time.  I should have been hungry, but I wasn’t.  I was under too much pressure to feel the need to eat.  Pressure from what?  I don’t know.  I just felt some kind of “social claustrophobia” and eventually I had to get out.  So that’s what I did.  I got up and went outside.  It was the only thing I knew to do.  Unfortunately, once I was away from the table the emotional stress only evolved into guilt for walking out.  I stayed outside until my wife eventually joined me and we left.

Earlier today I had lunch with my immediate family to celebrate my sister’s birthday.  During the meal, I thought I would do the mature thing and own up to abandoning everyone at the restaurant.  So, I apologized.  I said “I’m sorry about yesterday”.  I don’t know what I expected in response to this, but what I didn’t expect was completely silence.  Well, that’s what I got.  Not a word back.  Not so much as an acknowledgement that I’d said anything at all.  Nobody even looked at me.  I don’t know what anybody was thinking, but even though no words were uttered aloud I can tell you what I heard.  I heard stuff like “You embarrassed us all” and “we’re too ashamed of you to even think about it” and “we can’t believe you did such a thing”.  You see, this is the kind of thing anxiety does to a person to tear them apart from the inside.  Even though logically and reasonably I know my family wouldn’t say things like that about me, it’s how I felt, and once again, the stress and pressure started setting in.

To be honest I hesitated quite a bit while writing that last sentence.  Even as I sit here now, having had time to “sort it out” in my brain, I still don’t feel 100% convinced that my family wasn’t thinking some of those things.  Notice that I used the phrase “wouldn’t *say* things like that”.  I do believe they wouldn’t say those things… out loud.  I can’t be sure they wouldn’t think them.  I’m not sure how to handle that.

The ways in which anxiety plays tricks on the mind is compounded by the lack of understanding by others.  Anxiety is one of those things that can’t easily be explained to or understood by someone who hasn’t experienced it.  I’m so grateful that I have a wife who understands, and because of this at the very least I don’t feel completely alone.

After dinner I told my mom that I haven’t been doing well…. that I’ve been feeling anxious and depressed and angry.  Her one word reply “Why” told me right away there was no point in trying to explain.  Anxiety has no answer for “Why”.  It just is.

I have an amazing family that loves me and I’m incredibly blessed to have them, but all the love in the world isn’t going to help them understand what I’m going through.  I’m just going to have to hope they take me seriously and at least pray about it or something.

Also, yes.  I have been taking medication for this for a long time… and, for a long time, I’ve been doing just fine.  However the last couple of weeks have been pretty bad, and I’m not sure what’s changed.

Well, I think I got out what I wanted to get out.

Boiler

I have a lot of pent-up anger inside of me.  Years of exasperation and indignation just pooling up.  I’m pretty good at holding it back… sealing it in to protect those around me from it.  However once in a while some of it leaks out, and I often feel that if I don’t let some of it out little bits at a time, like trying to open a shaken bottle of soda without making a huge mess, I might just explode.

 

Bad Mood

I’m in a pretty bad mood right now.  Not sure why, either.  It’s probably just a series of several small things adding up.

You know, I seem to have close friends who lean on me with their burdens and emotional baggage, but when I need support, I have nobody.  Somehow I’m just not surprised.

Few things surprise me any more.

How do I choose the right title?

So it looks like my last post was over a year and a half ago.  Yeah I’m probably not going to do some ‘episodic’ series of technical troubles, although those things really do seem to follow me around like… I dunno.  Mosquitoes, I suppose?  Yeah, mosquitoes… and as if I was bathed it sugar water.  Sounds about right.

I really do want to start blogging again, and for some reason, no matter how many times I say I’m going to… I just don’t.  I wonder why that is.  Maybe it’s laziness, or maybe it’s forgetfulness…  Perhaps it all boils down to an underlying lack of caring.

I’d like to make a good effort this time, though.  It would help if I got some type of feedback from my friends, too.  Doesn’t have to even be an actual comment or response.  Just some acknowledgement that the entry was read.  A “like” on Facebook would suffice, assuming these get posted there (they should).

That’s really all I have for right now, though. I’ll bring more later.

Mysterious Tech Troubles: S01E00: Pilot

Some of my friends already know this about me already.  I am afflicted by a strange curse.  This curse causes technology that I use to exhibit unusual, inexplicable, and nonsensical problems.  I’m just not talking about the typical problems people have such as low performance, limited storage capacities, or even virus issues.  I’m mostly talking about problems that really make no sense at all and show themselves spontaneously without any particular trigger or provocation.  I know what you’re probably thinking.  You’re probably thinking there’s obviously got to be some kind of logical cause and explanation for each problem that I encounter, and the practical, objective side of my brain would agree with you.  However, until someone can actually find those causes or explanations and share them with me, I’m calling it a curse.

I have finally decided to start logging each of these issues as they occur, or in this case, I’ll be blogging.

Even though this is just the pilot episode meant to introduce you to some of the details of this curse, I’ll tell you about a problem that happened to me only moments ago…

It was about 3:20am and I was diligently working my job. I had several windows open and was focused on a thought when I decided to unplug the cable from my mouse.  I have a Logitech G700s gaming mouse the functions both with or without the wire.  I plug it in to charge it.  It doesn’t really hold a charge as long as my previous mouse, so I tend to just leave it plugged in even when it isn’t necessary.  Tonight, however, I wanted to reduce the extra ‘drag’ caused by the wire and unplugged it.  Normally when I do this the mouse might stop for a second, but then it would go back to normal and it’d be like nothing happened.  Such wasn’t the case this time.

I unplugged the mouse from the cable, and as expected, it stopped moving for a brief moment and then I could move it again, but then something unexpected happened… I was no longer able to click on anything other than the application I was focused on when I unplugged the mouse.  No matter where I clicked or moved the mouse on the screen, there was no response or feedback whatsoever.  Couldn’t click anything.  Couldn’t even get apps to recognize the mouse at all… except just the one I was focused on previously.

I plugged the mouse back in.  Figured maybe if I just go back to the way it was a few minutes ago, I can continue my work.  Nope.  The problem persisted.  Already having completely lost my train of thought and now thoroughly frustrated with this ridiculous interruption, I decided to go grab Lisa’s much less fancy wireless mouse and use that for now.  I got the mouse, plugged in the receiver and… hmmm… why isn’t this working…. wait, the USB hub I plugged the receiver to isn’t working.  Why not?  Is it not plugged in?  Yeah, it’s plugged in.  I guess I’ll unplug it and plug it back in.  Okay now it’s working… now let’s plug the receiver in and use Lisa’s mouse so I can continue my work.

Nope.

The problem persisted… even with a completely different mouse.  I realize that it’s not the physical mouse with the problem but rather something with the drivers/software that operates the mouse.  I guess I thought that using a different mouse would use a different generic mouse driver or something.  Maybe not, though.  Either way, I didn’t see any way to fix the problem… except to reboot the PC.

Rebooting the PC is quite a hassle… especially when it interrupts my work.  As mentioned before, I’ve got several windows open and I’m looking at certain lines of code within specific files and it’s just extra trouble to have to get it all back up again.  Plus, for some unknown reason, my Windows takes an incredibly long time to start up (which, by the way, is another mystery that I might talk about at some point).

Anyway, after the PC booted up again, the mouse worked normally again.  My displays, however… well, perhaps I’ll talk about that in another episode.

The Social Disconnect

I’ve been wanting to write about this for days, but I feel a bit intimidated by the amount of words I would have to type.  I decided I’ll just say what I want to say now and if we need a part 2 then we’ll do that.

Technology.  Technology and I have a truly hate/love relationship. I love how easy it makes some things and how much joy it brings me when it cooperates.  However, sometimes it does not cooperate and it brings only grief and madness.  Still, I keep it around and embrace it like little brother or something.  I know, it’s weird.

Technology is a jealous, conniving little beast, though.  It wants everybody for itself and doesn’t want to share.  I know this because technology is drawing everybody into itself and away from their friends and families.  These devices and networks that were initially designed to connect people is doing just the opposite.

This paragraph was initially going to be about Facebook (and social networking in general), but I’m going to save that for another day.  Instead, this paragraph will be about smartphones, and I might only touch the surface, but I wanted to at least do that.  Phones are devices that are meant to connect people.  People can communicate to each other over long distances instantly.  It’s an amazing technology.  However, phones are disconnecting people in a profound way.  Years ago, friends would gather together to enjoy each others’ company.  They’d watch movies, play games, or just sit around and chat.  This formula seems to have changed with the introduction of smartphones.  People still gather together, but rather than enjoying each other, they plant their faces in their phones, doing… who knows?  I couldn’t tell you how many times my personal social interaction with another person has been hijacked by a phone, or how many times I’ve been in a quiet room full of people playing with their wireless devices rather than enjoying each others’ company.

Well, that’s all I really have the energy for today.  Trust me, though, I have plenty more to say on the topic.

Thought Bucket

I have many thoughts and topics that I’d kinda like to write about in my blog.  I’m just not quite sure where to begin.  Among others, certain topics such as the pain in my hip, my thoughts on black Friday, getting sick and recovering, and why I think Facebook is an anti-social network… are all things I’d like to talk about in my blogs.  I’m just not sure if now’s the time for those.

One thing I suppose I’ll touch on is blogging itself.  Personal blogs are very difficult to get an audience for, especially compared to blogs that cover popular trends and news.  You see, personal blogs don’t really have much to offer the reader.  There isn’t really much the audience can take from a personal blog to apply somewhere else.  Personal blogs are primarily just for the author’s benefit… a way for someone to talk about stuff that interests them first and foremost.  So… what can be done about this?  Is there a way to maintain a personal blog while still be appealing (or even entertaining) to the reader?  Perhaps if we’re clever about the way we write things… or maybe we can throw in funny bits here and there.   I dunno.

I’m going to sign off in a few minutes and get ready for bed, and while I’m doing so, I’ll be unable to help but wonder in the back of my mind if anybody is going to read this post… and if so, who?  What will he/she think about it?

[this is the part where I simply shrug and click the “Publish” button]

Diet Pepsi is a Real Blast

I was sleeping.  I heard a noise.  It was one of those noises you can tell came from the real world and not the dream world.  It came from somewhere in the house, and it was loud enough to wake me up.

Before I continue I should let you know that I already have troubles with apprehensions of loud noises occurring at night.  I suppose being a homeowner with no children and an incredibly docile cat that usually sleeps with us at night gives me the notion that any sound coming from somewhere else inside the house can’t be a good thing.

Anyway, I definitely heard something, and the cat was indeed with us so it wasn’t her.  I slipped out of bed and peeked out of the bedroom door.  I didn’t see anything out of the ordinary, nor did I hear any more sounds.  I grabbed the flashlight and slowly began walking around the house.  When I got to the kitchen I smelled something suspicious… something that didn’t belong… but I didn’t see anything of any consequence.  I went through the hall to the computer room and then to the living room and found nothing of concern.  I returned to the kitchen, again smelling the strange scent.  Then I saw it.  The freezer door was partially open.

When the light from my flashlight hit the freezer I immediately knew what had happened.  I saw a few Diet Pepsi cans haphazardly lodged between the freezer door and the freezer itself.  You see, I had friends over a while earlier and before they arrived I placed a few cans of soda in the freezer door to chill them quickly, foolishly telling myself “Eh, I won’t forget”.  Well, I forgot.

After turning on the kitchen light and getting a closer look without opening the freezer door more, I could see most of the damage.  At least one of the cans had split in half  and literally exploded all over the inside of the freezer.  This apparently happened with enough force to knock the door storage railing off of its ‘hook’ (you can see this railing in the photo, but I put it back together before taking the picture) and force the entire freezer door open enough for the cans to fall just enough to prevent the door from closing but not fall out onto the floor.

I’ve never actually experienced the effects of a can of soda literally exploding in a freezer.  In fact, I often thought of it as no more than an urban legend.  Guess I have my proof now.  Even still, I never would have expected it to burst with such force.

 

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An Old Questionnaire Repost

Copied from one of my old Myspace blogs:

 

1. Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?
– I sleep in the closet with my bedroom doors open

2. Do you ever take the shampoos and soaps from hotel rooms?
– Yes, and I usually sneak out with the furniture and carpet, too!

3. Have you ever ‘done it’ in a hotel room?
– You mean pee on the ceiling? Every time!

4. Have you ever stolen a street sign before?
– No but I’ve stolen a traffic signal light from a busy street.

5. Do you like to use post-it notes?
– They make create outfits

6. Do you cut out coupons but then never use them?
– I usually use all the coupons I never cut out

7. Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of bees?
– A swarm of big bears

9. Do you always smile for pictures?
– Only if they are pictures trees

10. What is your biggest pet peeve?
– Global molecular dematerialization

11. Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out?
– Both.. tuck in one end and out the other, haha

12. Do you ever count your steps when you walk?
– Every time.  I’m currently on 35,285,190.  That’s a lot.

13. Have you ever peed in the woods?
– Daily, and that’s not all I do in the woods… so watch your step.

14. Do you ever jump up and down to make your privates bounce?
– Oh yes.  In fact, I’m going to do that as soon as I’m done with this.

15. Do you chew your pens and pencils?
– Mmm… yes I chew them very carefully so I do not choke.

16. Whats your favorite animal and why?
– My favorite animal is probably the meerkat.  No, it isn’t.  I lied.  I like water buffalo because they are great birds of prey and have no legs.

17. Do you like popcorn from those big tins?
– I like the big tins from that popcorn… stop making my hungry.  I’ll eat your children.

18. What is your “Song of the week”?
– My song of the week?  You wouldn’t know it… I don’t even know it.

19. Do you wear pink?
– it’s not pink… it’s salmon, and no I do not wear salmon.  I wear cod.

20. Do you still watch cartoons?
– My life is a artoon.  That’s “artoon” with a “c” in front of it.

21. What’s your favorite scary movie?
– The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl was pretty freaky

23. Where would you bury hidden treasure if you had some?
– I do have some hidden treasure, and it is buried, but it’s no place you can ever find.

24. What do you drink with dinner?
– Usually sheep’s blood, but sometimes I’ll have a glass of elephant puss if it’s a special occasion.

25. What do you dip a chicken nugget in?
– I dip my chicken’s nuggets in hot oil.

26. What is your favorite food/cuisine?
– I can’t tell you that, because it’s not legal.

27. What movie could you watch over and over and still love?
– I don’t understand… this question is too confusing.  I hate you.

28. Last person you hugged?
– myself.  See, I’m the only person that is willing to touch me.

30. Would you ever strip or pose nude in a magazine?
– What do you think I do for a living?  How do you think I pay the bills?

31. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone?
– I don’t know how to write… Oh wait, yes I do.  I thougth you meant something else.  The last time I wrote a letter to someone was… yes.

32. Can you change the oil on a car?
– Yeah but it probably won’t operate any more. *mwa ha ha*

33. Ever gotten a speeding ticket?
– Nah… I didn’t even know tickets could drive, let alone speed.

34. Ran out of gas?
– I never run out of gas…I eat too much.  :)

35. Favorite kind of sandwich?
– That kind

36. Best thing to eat for breakfast?
– YOU!!!!

37. What’s your usual bedtime?
– I don’t have a usual bedtime, but I usually go to bed at some time, which is any time.

38. Are you lazy?
– Nahhh I’m not lazy… I just usually don’t feel like doing things so I don’t.

40. When you were a kid what did you dress up as for Halloween?
– YOU!!!  Got 1st prize for ugliest, too.

41. Do you read the newspaper?
– No, I pee on it

42. Do you have any magazine subscriptions?
– Why?

43. Is Fabio ugly?
– He’s more than ugly… he’s fugly… it’s so fugly, he’s oogly.

44.whats better legos or lincon logs?
– Linkin park?

45. Red wine or white wine?
– You whine

46. Are you stubborn?
– No way!  …and I’m NOT changing that.

47. Who is better…Leno or Letterman?
– Legos

48. Watch a soap opera?
– I like to listen to the shampoo sing

49. Afraid of heights?
– Yeah, no…. no yes…. maybe? Not at all.

50. Sing in the car?
– I sing in the car because I HATE YOU!  I mean… yes.

51. Dance in the shower?
– Baby, I don’t dance.  I PERFORM in the shower… it’s magical.

52. Dance in the car?
– Oh yes, it’s riverdance up in that ride, man.

53. Ever used a gun?
– I’m about to right now.

54. Last time you got a portrait taken by a photographer?
– last week… I had a portrait sitting on my desk and this guy with a camera just walked in and took it… bastard.

55. Are musicals cheesy?
– I love cheese

56. Is Christmas stressful?
– The question is “Is stress Christmasful?”  The answer is “bouancy”

57. Ever eat a pierogi?
– Yes I’ve eaten a pie and “rogi” is not my name… idiot.

58. Favorite type of fruit pie?
– Ohhhh the kind with fruit in it… that’s my favorite.

59. Occupation you wanted to be when you were a kid?
– Well, when I was 3 I first wanted to be a gynocologist.  That changed when I turned 5 and realized I would make a great human cannonball for the traveling circus.  When I was 9 I was really into movies so I wanted to be a porn star.  Finally, I set aside these childish dreams and decided to have a career in world domination.

60. Do you believe in ghosts?
– I’m here, aren’t I?

61. Ever have a Deja-vu feeling?
– All the time, and it’s always the same damn thing.

62. Take a vitamin daily?
– Yeah… some preparation H for all the assholes I deal with and some Fukitol in the morning.

63. Wear slippers?
– Yup!  Well, they’re actually condoms with cotton glued to them but they work the same.

64. Wear a bath robe?
– I’m so hairy I don’t need a bath robe.. just a rope.

65. What do you wear to bed?
– My bath robe and slippers

66. First concert?
– I swear I saw Elvis… and the Beatles… and  that stuff.  Nevermind.

67. Wal-Mart, Target or K-Mart?
– Hometown Buffet

68. Nike or Adidas?
– I don’t know… maybe if I had a map, or some kind of barbecue sauce.

69. Fritos or Cheetos?
– I absolutely cannot stand that stupid purple dinosaur!

70. Corn nuts or sunflowers seeds?
– definitely hustlin’ corn nuts

71. Ever heard of “norpo?”
– Norp

72. Ever take dance lessons?
– Honey, I GIVE dance lessons… every tuesday and wednesday evening… in the shower.

73. Is there a profession that you want for your perfect future?
– Y’know that whole world domination thing I mentioned earlier?  Yeah, that.

74. Can you curl your tongue?
– Oh yes… just watch!

75. Ever won a spelling bee?
– Of course… I won a whole swarm of spelling bees… and a drive bee!

76. Have you ever cried because you were so happy?
– I’m about to right now because this questionairre is so emotionally satisfying.

77. Own any record albums?
– I own my own record label!  So… make 7 up yours!

78. Own a record player?
– Every player I own is a record!

79. Regularly burn incense?
– Is this a multiple choice question?  Hmmm… “A”, final answer.

80. Ever been in love?
– Love is a four letters word.

81. Who would you like to see in concert?
– Everybody and their grandparents

82. Hot tea or iced tea?
– Iced tea, and then drop it like it’s hot

83. Tea or coffee?
– Milk

84. Favorite kind of cookie?
– you’re my favorite cookie, sweetie, haha

85. Can you swim well?
– Yes but I can sink even better!

86. Can you hold your breath w/o manually holding your nose?
– Oh that’s nothing… try holding your nose without manually holding your breath!  Now that’s talent!

87. Are you patient?
– No I’m orderly.

88. DJ or band, at a wedding?
– Neither!  I want a pantomime and a herd of buffalo!

89. Ever won a contest?
– What’s a contest?  I think i like chilidogs.

90. Ever have plastic surgery?
– No but I’ve had a rubber operation :)

91. Which are better black or green olives?
– French fries are the bomb!

92. Can you knit or crochet?
– I dont’ want to be kicked in the crotch :(

93. Best room for a fireplace?
– Question is: “Best place for a roomfire?”

94. Do you want to get married?
– I don’t even know you!  PFfftt!