Sunday, February 26, 2017


1) I finally recovered from my birthday, thank you very much.  I was so full that day, y'all.  I really was. I still went out and bought myself some ice cream cupcakes, because I wanted something to blow a candle out on top of (I've got my priorities.)  But by the time I got home all I wanted to do was sit and not move very much.  Steve, bless him, still wanted to take me somewhere to get dinner.  I'd told him several days earlier that I didn't want to try and eat at a restaurant because it was Valentine's day and trying to do that is a nightmare, so I told him take out would be fine.  At the time I thought it would be, but I was so not hungry.  He was really insistent on doing something, so we headed out to go to a grocery store for sandwiches, figuring that it wouldn't be so crowded.  Wow, were we wrong.

OK, so here is something I don't understand.  Why are there people - grown up, seemingly otherwise capable people - going out on actual Valentine's day and buying gifts at 5:00 PM?  Shouldn't that be something thought about in advance?  Granted, I suppose that if you want to buy flowers or something, maybe you don't want to do that the day before, but still...  Eh, anyway, the grocery store was so full of people that we couldn't get any service, so we left and hit a drive through.  I was OK with that because I knew I wouldn't be able to eat much.

I feel kind of bad.  I don't think I was a very good Valentine's or Birthday date.  I hadn't been feeling well for a week or more, and it was making me edgy and unhappy, so I'm sure dealing with that was no fun for Steve.  I tried to explain, but it's hard to explain not feeling well when there isn't a specific, hey, this hurts, kind of problem.  He's patient, though.  Got to give him that. I think he's just biding his time and collecting enough evidence to have be committed.  :)  Anyway, the day ended OK and I barely ate anything for two days after.

2) Dear Lord.  I'm 39 years old now.  I've got a lot of shenanigans to take care of this year.  I'm going to need your help.  :)

3) Y'all, I thought I was going crazy.  Seriously, like, genuinely crazy for the past couple of weeks.  I was on edge like you wouldn't believe and I was having what felt like the world's longest anxiety attack.  It was awful.  I think I've figured out what was causing it, though, or at least I hope I have.  You remember last year I told you about having all of those spine problems?  That was about a year ago, wasn't it?  Dang.

Anyway, when I was going to physical therapy, the therapist told me I'd need to be careful when I went to the gym, so I didn't cause myself any damage.  I managed to start going to the gym again (off and on. Shut up.) and I wasn't particularly careful.  I can't be 100% positive, but I think I pinched some nerves in my neck and back using the elliptical machine.  One of the main feelings I get when I have an anxiety attack is it feels like my neck is clenching up.  Kind of like how you feel when you know someone is watching you. It never occurred to me that I'd hurt myself, but I'm pretty sure I did. I had to stop sleeping with a pillow and basically start sleeping on ice packs, but the feeling is finally starting to fade. I don't think it's completely fixed, but at least I don't feel like the skin across my back is trying to creep off anymore.

Of course, I could be wrong and am really having a perpetual anxiety attack.  If that's the case, when I'm whacked out on psych meds and hiding under a bed all the time, we can all come back and giggle at this blog entry.  I give you permission.

You know what sucks about hurting myself at the gym (if that's what I did?)  I literally don't know how to exercise anymore.  I can't run, I can't...ellipticalize, riding a regular stationary bike puts my neck in a bad position, and I can't lift weights anymore.  I was going back to try and lose a bit of the weight I've put back on, and now I have no idea what to do.  The only thing that has seemed to help lately is just not eating, but if I want to, you know, stay alive, I can't do that very often.  What am I going to do?  I don't want to keep gaining weight!

I don't know how to work my body anymore!  It's quite frustrating.

4) Steve and I had a fun day on Saturday.  He's been listening to the Dirk Gently audio novels while driving to and from work, and he wanted me to hear them too, but we don't carpool anymore and are only in the car together for a little bit at a time every few days.  We decided to take a road trip to Guntersville, mainly just to be in the car to listen to the book, but we figured that we might as well enjoy the destination as well as the journey.

Once we got there, we walked around a bit. We went to some antique stores and I found some more buttons!  When I told the man who worked at the store that I collected old buttons, he gave me a tiny, civil war era button made from a shell for free.  I thought that was very nice.  We drove to a place that sells catalog returns and overstock.  It was mostly furniture and house goods, but I FINALLY got a sink to replace the janky one in the front bathroom for when we get a replacement vanity cabinet.  We drove to Albertville and found the silver fire hydrant, which is the millionth one produced in Albertville and was chrome plated and on display.  I like the whole "Roadside America" thing!  Now I want to see more weird Americana!

We basically drove around all day and listened to the book.  Most people drive around to talk, but it's nice to not talk sometimes, too!  The Dark Tea Time of the Soul is a little confusing, but still a good book. :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


Today is Valentine's Day and my birthday.

People keep feeding me.  Dear God, they will not stop feeding me.

It started with doughnuts. My boss got me doughnuts and that was good. I like doughnuts.


There was a ladies prayer meeting and they brought us food, but some was for my birthday.  They sang happy birthday to me and handed me a plate of food.

Baptist women do not screw around when it comes to food.

I don't want to be rude and not at least taste what they've given me, so I've been eating all day and I don't know if I'm going to survive. I had to secretly throw away part of a cupcake. I did it like I was smuggling contraband out of the country, just so no one would see me and get their feelings hurt. I've hidden a baggy of mini muffins so no one knows I didn't eat them. My boss then bought us lunch because that's what he does and I told him he didn't have to, but he still did.

I love that all of these people want to do things for me, but I'm so full that I can't move.

I've eaten all of the food in the world. I've probably eaten the food that should have gone to a village in Malawi.  Please tell them I'm sorry.

My pancreas has given up. I'm going towards the light...

Tuesday, February 07, 2017


1) Did you know that they are now in the process of tearing down Madison Square Mall?  Well, if you live around here, you probably know, but everyone else probably doesn't care! Haha!

I haven't gone there in a long time, mainly because the shops inside had started to close one by one and it was like going into a haunted house. Even so, knowing that it is going to be gone makes me sad because I spent SO MUCH of my formative years in that mall!  I was only six years old, but I remember what a big deal it was when it opened.  I remember the first time I went there with my mom, and I was so small and it seemed so huge and overwhelming.  It was one of the first places where I was allowed to run around unsupervised with my friends, and one of the first places I went when I got my drivers license.  I went on dates there (shut up, they were fun), my friends and I would go and spend hours walking around and I even worked in one of the stores there for a very short time.

I know change is inevitable, and whoever bought the property plans to make it a place better suited to the kind of town that Huntsville is growing into, but it isn't fun to see a place that has so many memories attached to it going away.  Hopefully I'll get to make some new memories in whatever kind of place that it is going to be next, but I can't help but think that whatever comes next will never live up to the silliness and fun I had there when I was a kid!

2) Last Saturday Steve and I were supposed to be going to a lock picking class that would be run by one of the people who is associated with one of Steve's many extracurricular cyber security groups.  This would normally be one of those things that Steve would do on his own, but I asked to go along because I thought that would be fun, plus lock picking might be a good skill to have during the zombie apocalypse.  I don't know if most people will lock their houses before they are brutally slain by the undead, but they may have closets or pantries where they keep supplies that need to be unlocked.  You never know!

Unfortunately, for me at least, what we arrived at wasn't a lock picking class.  I had apparently been signed up (unknowingly) for a Cyber Security Conference, and I can say with certainty that I was WAY out of my element.  We walked inside the main conference room, and BAM! I'm surrounded by neckbeards.  Not only was this a conference, the lock picking thing wasn't even a class, it was just some dude set up in a room with a bunch of locks, and he'd let you borrow tools to see if you could unlock them.  I did manage to learn to pick a couple of padlocks and handcuff locks, but then I had to sit through panels that made no sense to me.  I could have left, because Steve had a friend there that would have taken him home if I took the car, but Steve wouldn't let me.  I'm sure he had his reasons, but I don't know what they were!  Luckily, we didn't stay terribly late, because I think I might have bitten someone in an attempt to get thrown out! 

I wish that I could get more interested in cyber security, though.  The industry is hiring like crazy and there are seemingly not many women in it at all.  I think I saw six women at the conference besides myself, and three of them were serving coffee and doughnuts.  It's just all way above my head.  I did manage to smile and nod a lot during the panels, so maybe no one knew I was confused.

We did get a set of lock picking tools out of the deal though, and I'm getting better at picking the practice lock we have!  Silver lining!

3) Have you noticed how down and negative everyone has been lately?  I know things aren't great, but I also know they aren't so bad that almost everything should be mired in doom and gloom.  At least, it isn't just yet.  Almost everything in my Facebook feed is political, my favorite website has stopped being entertaining because every article they publish is just an ugly screed against the president (and God knows I'd like to hear something different these days) and even my Twitter feed has gotten ridiculous, and I don't even follow anyone in politics. Even the twitter account that shows cute puppies has gotten political.  Ugh.  It's life draining. Going online has gotten depressing.  I'm holding on tight to everything that I do that doesn't get political these days.  I don't mind discussing that sort of thing with rational people, but geez, trying to find a rational person is getting harder to do.  I hope that I can be a person that people can talk to if they get tired of all of this stuff. 

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Sometimes I feel completely smothered by the things that are going on because I don't always feel I have a choice about them.

But I know it could be a lot worse. 

Wednesday, February 01, 2017


I've complained about my job a bit in the past.  I don't like to do it much, because I know that I've got kind of a sweet gig here. The hours are decent, what I do is not hard, and most people here seem to think I'm really good at my job and they bring me snacks.  I'm grateful for that, absolutely.  As long as I am safely inside the building, I'm usually good.  Working here has been an interesting experience, and I say that with true sincerity.

But sometimes this place is really freaking weird.

Don't get me wrong, our church is a great place.  We have a loving and close congregation, and it's one of the few southern baptist churches left in our town that have held off on flashy stage lights, worship bands and tattooed preachers.  We are an old school place, with old school members, and with few exceptions that's not such a bad thing. Lately, however, we seem to have wondered into a bubble of complete bat-poop crazy that seems to be holding fairly steady.

*In the past week and a half, as I already told you, we had a guy who was working for us get held up at gunpoint. Our preacher, who decided to pretend to be Barney Fife, started casing the neighborhood for the man, and actually found him and managed to get him arrested.  The man is now being held not only for armed robbery, but also possession and he had a warrant out for him because of domestic violence.  We are glad the guy is in jail, but I'm also very glad the preacher didn't get capped.  This neighborhood isn't good for snitches.

 *A few days later, we had a drunk man stumble up the aisle of the sanctuary (saying all he wanted to do was pray) but he also wanted someone to buy him a pizza. 

*We had one of our special members, a man with a form of autism, have a complete come apart when the worker from his group home asked him to sit with the other men he came to church with. It disrupted things.

*We had a lady trip over the lip of the doorway and lay in the floor, flat on her back, until I called 911 (again) even though she wasn't hurt and refused treatment when the paramedics got here.  Her sister, a fruit-bat of the first order who believes that she is some kind of long-lost mother goddess who will eventually go to Africa to save children (?) and believes that the African people will see her as royalty, told us she was in the medical field (she is not) and so she would take care of everything (she did not.)  By the way, the sister also told us that she could cure AIDS and cancer with common household ingredients, but she can't tell anyone how to do it or the government will have her killed. I'm not kidding about any of that, just so you know.

*The same man who showed up drunk and wanted a pizza came back here today while the preacher was gone, so I had to talk to him. He didn't remember that he'd just been here asking for stuff, and even though I told him we had nothing to give him, as we are having to reevaluate how we handle things after the armed robbery, he wouldn't leave.  I had to tell him about six times that we couldn't help him.  He also had a tall tale of woe, which I suppose was supposed to make me throw money at him. No idea.

*I was inadvertently pulled in, at least tangentially, to a situation where a man from our church (allegedly) defrauded and was attempting to take over the life/money of a mentally challenged woman. I have had to talk to an investigator for the Huntsville SVU, and will have to give over copies of my notary records, because I notarized the form that would allow him to do this.  I know I can't get in trouble for what I did, but the fact that that skeezy dude got me involved makes me mad.

*And finally, today, one of our more...out there, for want to better term, members came by the church three times.  She didn't say what she was doing, but that's OK, because we know her and she comes by occasionally to pray.  She'd come in, walk into the church, walk back out.  On her second visit, she came into the office and asked if I wanted an apple.  I said yes to be nice, and she left the plastic produce bag with me so I could choose one while she disappeared into the depths of the church again.  When she came back, she told me to keep all of them.  Uh...sure.  She came back one more time, walked back into the church without saying hello and left without saying goodbye.  Huh...OK then!  I didn't think about her again for a while, except to tell people about the weird apple thing, until I walked into the sanctuary to load the pastor's Wednesday night Power Point Presentation.  That's when I noticed that she'd left apples on the altar.  I don't think I need tell you that, as Southern Baptists, we don't generally leave offerings of a tangible nature on the altar, but for some reason this lady had been compelled to leave produce there for Jesus.  I suppose that's who it was for, at least.  She didn't leave a note or anything.  So that's when I realized that she had given me some of the apples she'd brought for Jesus.  She gave me sacrifice apples.  I don't even know where to begin on that one.

These are all real things that have happened in the last 10 days, and it doesn't even scratch the surface of the crazy that goes on here on a regular basis.  I may need to look for other work.

Everyday is an adventure.