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Transitioning into liminal space

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Book Burnings? [Oct. 23rd, 2018|03:03 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
[State of Being |sadsad]

Book burnings? In my country? It's more likely than you think. (Actually, it doesn't surprise me, unfortunately.)

I just contacted this library to offer to pay for a replacement book or, if as many people have already offered to do that as I think probably have, to instead buy and donate an additonal LGBTQ-friendly children's book to the library. Maybe you could do the same, or even donate such a book to a library local to you in solidarity.

It is important to me to let people doing what I feel is good work know that they are supported.

(The article is about a religious zealot burning library books in front of the library, likely as a protest against an event in which drag queens read to children.)

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(no subject) [Oct. 23rd, 2018|02:03 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
[State of Being |surprisedsurprised]

I just weeded "Sarcoidosis: a Clinical Approach" by Om P. Sharma, M.B., B.S., F.A.C.P., F.C.C.P., D.T.M., and H. (Eng.). That's a real contender for the most letters I've seen after a person's name.
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(no subject) [Oct. 23rd, 2018|12:38 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
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[State of Being |workingworking]

I was walking to Jewel to pick up lunch stuffs when my right foot started hurting even more than it did yesterday. I turned back and got a burger at the cafeteria. I think I'll get breakfast and lunch stuff when I go grocery shopping tonight and bring it to work by bike.

I've found an acceptable-to-my-partner way of sleeping in bed with the tiny-dog! I leave the leash on him and loop the end around the desk so that he can't make it over to her side and pester her. He does move around on occasion but it doesn't bother me at all. It's reassuring, really. He loves to be totally under the blankets and quickly burrows in once I'm lying down. He noses at me and nestles up against me in one place for a while, then one of us gets uncomfortable and shifts and he finds another place to curl up. It makes me feel warm and loved and protective.
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(no subject) [Oct. 23rd, 2018|12:32 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
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From yesterday:

The bottle cap, small bit of fishing gear, and ferrous stone above the pipe came from the Kenosha, Wisconsin marina on the 20th. The pipe and the rest of the stuff below it (very old beer can, metal ring, bottle cap, and big metal thingy with rubber wheel jammed in) were from the pier on the south side of the Northwestern University campus in Evanston, IL.

Any idea what that big metal thing is? It weighs about 30 pounds I'd guess. The rubber wheel is not attached, it was just stuck between the upward-bending part and that flangey bit. The flangey bit is welded on.

Not pictured; my lost phone. Maybe it will turn up some day when I'm fishing the same spot on the NW campus.

Magnet Fishing Finds - October 20 and 21
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(no subject) [Oct. 23rd, 2018|12:32 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
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[State of Being |accomplishedaccomplished]

This one's from two days ago:

I went fishing twice this weekend. On Saturday, Danae and I met several folks in Kenosha for the outing. My brothers were there along with Super-mechanic Juan and his son Aldo, and one of said brothers' girlfriend, Clarissia, to toss my magnet into the water at the Kenosha marina. My mother was going to join us, but it was cold enough that we only stayed out for an hour or so and she ended up meeting us after at the nearby coffee house.

I love the way Juan interacts with his kid. He pointed out lots of interesting physics as we played. "See how the line seems to bend at the water? The water bends the light!" I think he and Maddie must be awesome parents.

When I met Juan, I was in high school (I think) and he was in elementary school with my brother. So strange. I don't know when I last saw he or his wife; I miss them.

We caught a Bacardi bottle cap, a tiny bit of fishing gear I don't recognize (I know nothing about fish-fishing), and a ferrous rock of some kind a little bigger than maybe two ping-pong balls. I think if we could have gone out on the docks we'd have caught more interesting things, but those are fenced off.

I really wanted to try fishing what used to be the freight harbor when Kenosha still hosted international freighters picking up things like automobiles. There was some concern about the magnet getting stuck to the iron sheeting that lines the harbor wall, but we managed to avoid that. I did, though, get it stuck to the iron at the lip of the harbor itself. I did it once before, but only a bit of the magnet was attached so I managed to pull it off. When someone asked about the strength though, I put about half of it onto the iron and was unable to budget it loose. James ended up lying down on his side and bracing against a nearby concrete bench to kick the magnet sideways.

To my surprise, the harbor turned out to be about 30 feet deep, going by my rope. I didn't catch anything there. It does get dredged once in a while, so I suppose it's possible that there isn't years of build-up of discarded metal things, but I'd bet there are at least a few interesting things at the bottom. Maybe I'll find them another time. All I pulled up were rust chips.

In the evening, some of us hung out at my parents' house and played a game of Dixit before going home. The whole day was a pleasant excuse to get together with people. I imagine that must be what fishing for fish is kind of like, but without that whole sticking living animals with barbed hooks and yanking them around, which I can't deal with. My grandfather liked to fish; I wish I could invite him out for a day of him catching fish and me catching metal things.

On Sunday, I woke up early then fell asleep on the couch with the dog. I had terrible dreams and eventually woke myself up around 1 with the distressed moaning noises I was making. Danae was up and around by then and her presence was comforting. I really didn't feel like doing *anything*, but I reminded myself that doing something, no matter what, is positive and that being outside is good for depression. So I drove out to the Northwestern campus with my bucket and gear. I left Rufus home this time because my brother wasn't with us to keep Rufus warm inside his coat like Saturday and it's chilly out for a tiny-dog.

I spent a couple hours fishing off of a small pier at the north end of the Clark Street Beach at the south end of campus. The best part was chatting with other people who were curious about what I was doing. I explained the concept several times, showed off my catches, and pulled up the magnet to show to one person who took pictures of it! I was asked whether this was for my research; no, just for fun. A sailor told me that she and other boat folks always make sure to take off all of their valuable before going out, which made me think of working on the grid above a stage. A diver told me he found an iPhone at the bottom near the bridge to the landfill island just north of there.

Speaking of phones, I need a new one. I was leaning over the railing to manipulate the magnet and it jumped right of my jacket's breast pocket and down into the water. Sploosh! I spent some time trying to retrieve it with the magnet but gave up. I'm a bit distressed at having to find another one on Ebay, but I was having a good enough time that it was really only a minor setback. I have also learned something for next time.

As Juan commented on Saturday, it's amazing how much feedback comes through the magnet line. I sometimes closed my eyes as I moved the magnet along the bottom, mapping out what I was feeling in my mind. I think I developed a rough sense of the contours of the lake bottom which over time could help pinpoint areas where stuff is likely to accumulate.

I did make a few interesting catches. One more bottle cap came out, too worn to ID. I pulled up a two-foot length of pipe with a crimped end. I nabbed a beer can old enough to be prior to cans being made of aluminum. There didn't seem to be anything left of the labeling. And, the largest find yet, I caught about 30 pounds worth of some kind of structural flat metal piece with a flange that had a rubber wheel jammed into it.

So no bikes or safes or guns yet, but I had a really great time! I'll probably do some more this week and/or this weekend. I can think of so many places around here to look!

Pictures of the stuff I've found to come soon.
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(no subject) [Oct. 23rd, 2018|12:31 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space

Oops! Password issues kept things from appearing here for a little bit. Here are a couple of past entries that didn't post.


The woman's commentary on this video is the best part. I love her accent! "'E's got another key! 'At's the third one, innit?"

Anybody want to video me while I'm fishing?

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(no subject) [Oct. 17th, 2018|06:50 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
[Tags|, ]
[State of Being |excitedexcited]

I somehow stumbled into the idea of magnet fishing on the internet a few days ago. With the gift card I got from the library director for fixing the cable management issues (she's so great!) I'm buying a kit with rope and an 880lb (about 400kg) max pull magnet.

Imagine all the stuff there must be to pull out of the water around Chicago!

Besides, I've always wanted a stupidly powerful magnet.

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(no subject) [Oct. 17th, 2018|05:51 pm]
Transitioning into liminal space
[State of Being |determineddetermined]

Among other topics in therapy today, I talked about the part of my depression that comes from current events and feeling completely powerless. The therapist made some suggestions and, soon after arrive home, I filled out volunteer forms. I'm going to consider volunteering with Chicago Votes to register prisoners to vote, and with Postcard Posse, which sends postcards to likely Democratic voters who voted in 2016 but not in 2014 to try to increase mid-term turnout.

I feel better about myself this evening.
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(no subject) [Oct. 17th, 2018|07:17 am]
Transitioning into liminal space
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[State of Being |tiredtired]

I have an intake appointment with a new psychiatrist in a couple of weeks. The one I was seeing before moved out of the area some time ago and slots for new patients seem to be at a premium.

I'm dealing with some major depression lately and it's time to talk about changing my medication. No motivation. Nothing seems fun or worthwhile except playing and snuggling with my tiny-dog and being with my partner. This past weekend was Open House Chicago again, and for the second year in a row I just didn't feel like visiting any of the buildings. I don't want to play games that I usually enjoy. I don't want to try to be social. Those things just sound both uninteresting, and like too much work to deal with. My life right now is work, dog care, and lying on the couch and just that feels barely manageable. Moving several days' worth of dirty dishes into the kitchen and brushing my teeth yesterday both feel like real accomplishments.

Why does this happen to people? I had depression and anxiety problems before grad school, but now it's a whole new level. I feel like something physiological happened to my brain; like something is really different. How do I feel like I used to? Is it possible? I've missed doing and learning and experiencing so much over the past years. I've been wondering lately if the way to reduce depression and stress about that is to just lower my expectations for myself. To just accept the way I am now. Maybe that would be the first step to changing it. But that seems inherently contradictory and irrational. I don't accept the way I am. I don't want to be this way.
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(no subject) [Oct. 16th, 2018|08:39 am]
Transitioning into liminal space
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[State of Being |hopefulhopeful]

I saw Rufus having seizures (or one long seizure I guess) last night. He seems to still be aware of what's going on around him. He tries to follow people with his eyes and sometimes attempted to lick my nose when I got near him. He was having whole-body violent shivers like he might have if he was really cold. His head and limbs shook and he was unable to move himself around the couch. The best he could do was kind of squirm up against something or someone.

This seizure lasted longer than the last one; a little over an hour. I'd have been terrified if he hadn't been seen by the vet once already after the last one. I was still worried. I called the shelter so they knew what was going on and then talked to him and tried to make him feel comfortable. Eventually the episode passed and he was his usual self again.

Miriam is dropping him off at the vet's office today for a check of his liver function. I'm not sure what the treatment will be, if any. I don't know if his former people ever got him checked out, so they may be starting from scratch on diagnosis. It's probably idiopathic, but there might be some underlying problem that needs to be caught.


I was up at 4:30 today to give Rufus a little walk before work and he was his happy, wiggly self. I may make this my routine. Bed around 8:30, up at 4:30 for a little doggy time and leisurely work preparation, then on my bike around quarter past five. That felt pretty good today.

I'm remembering my various levels of cold-weather gear for different temperatures. I had them worked out quite well when I was last doing winter commuting. It was in the mid 30s F today, so I wore a t-shirt, light sleeveless vest, arm warmers, and the warm ear flaps that attach to my bike helmet. I think once we get to freezing and below it will be time for the mid-weight long-sleeve jacket. My arms would get all sweaty in it right now. I don't remember how cold it has to be before the jacket isn't enough. Normally I'd go to the ski-jacket after that, but I'm too big for it so I might have to do some other kind of layering instead. It's nice to arrive at work without the bandanna I wear under my helmet being soaked in sweat!
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