On the downhill side of the week..

And I’m kinda looking forward to my dental appointment tomorrow afternoon.  (It’s been a brain bending week so far.)

Last day and a half has been consumed by one client, who thankfully has been incredibly pleasant and patient while I’ve been picking through database tables trying to figure out where everything went sideways.  Sadly, this has meant I’ve not been able to get anything else done, but that’s how it is some days.

The kicker here is that this all got escalated to me, which is fine, but the guy it was escalated *from* decides he’s full of advice for me.  Um, OK, would you like the mess back on your desk?  No?  OK then.

On a way cooler note, thanks to the excellent descriptions by Jeff Lewis of the Outer Banks Voice, I have identified the owls I hear at night as Barred Owls.  Never seen them, but hear them all the time.

In weird “Only in DC”news:

Here’s a cat:

Carmen on my lap

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2018…  Let’s do this

So much to work on this year, but it should be worth it.

Keep nagging my Congresscritters.  (I look forward to the year when I don’t have to this constantly.). It has been heartening to see so many people get engaged and pushing back, and I am sure we’re gong to see that continue.  Just gotta not get completely exhausted.

More balance between work and everything else.  2017 was pretty much work and nothing else.  Need to take a few more days off.  A week at the beach isn’t enough over the course of the year.

Read more.  Twitter is enjoyable, but it doesn’t count, and I’m certainly not lacking for reading material.

Make more art.  Good, bad, disastrous, just make more art and put it out there.

Write more.  No good having worlds and stories just all in my head, gotta get it on paper.

Cook more.  I’m not a half bad cook and I should do that more.

Move more.  My ass in danger of becoming permanently glued to the couch.

May 2018 be a spectacular improvement over 2017 for all of us.

Double  Irish Coffee with whipped cream in pint glass that says I Am My Own Wingman

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No phone?  No problem. HA!!

Good lord not having my phone is absolutely maddening.  All my two factor authentication is out the window, I don’t know how to get anywhere right outside my immediate neighborhood, I’m terrified that my car will decide to break down and I won’t be able to call for assistance, and I’m just generally out of sorts.  Yes, I am too dependent on it, but let’s be real, smartyphones have become a normal tool of everyday life.

The display was separating from the housing and I thought I could put up with it until I hit my upgrade window in July.  The I wondered what would cause that, and I did some googling.

The verdict?  Swelling battery.  Well, off to the Sprint store, because I’ve had one mobile battery explode and that was enough to for a lifetime.

Somewhere in the back of my head, I knew they wouldn’t be able to fix it on site, but I still hoped…  But the tech took one look and said “damaged beyond repair” and it has to go through all the insurance channels to get me a functioning phone again.  5-7 days in theory.  But I dropped it off Thursday night, so it wasn’t even leaving the store until Friday, and it’s not even going to be in front of anyone until Tuesday.  (Unless they’re working Saturdays, which I doubt.)

And there is no mechanism to track any of this online – only the store can check on it, and I’m not going to bug them.  Maddening.

My iPad is picking up the slack as well as it can, but it’s 5 years old and pretty slow and probably needs a factory reset (if not a replacement) and I don’t dare do that right now because I am sure there is going to be some 2 factor authentication issue along the way, and well, I don’t have my phone.

This too shall pass, but it’s gonna drive me up a wall in the meantime.

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2017, Good riddance to bad rubbish

Well, it’s been a year, hasn’t it?

45 and his administration has forced me to nag my Congressman and Senators far more often than I should need to, and in general has me perpetually infuriated.

Moxley the AwesomeDog went to the big dog park in the sky, but not before one last trip to the beach, complete with a turtle pond.

Moxley i. front of the turtle pond, watching a turtle

The battery on my phone decided to start swelling and trying to eject the screen, so I’ll be starting off the year phone-less while Sprint does its thing to get me a replacement.  Let me tell you, after a mere 48 hours without it, I can safely say I will not be one of those people that permanently unplugs.  I’ve also discovered the hard way just how many accounts I have setup with dual factor authentication.  Props to Uber customer support for helping me get that bit sorted so I could at least get the app loaded on my iPad.

But it’s not been all shit, thank goodness.

I discovered duck tacos for breakfast this year:

Duck soft tacos at Coastsl Cantina

The LilyMonster and the Carmenator are still around and goofy.

Lily sleepingCarmen sleeping

Work was good.  I mean, it’s still work, and I’d rather be retired, but it’s been good.

We had a big blue swing in the Virginia House of Delegates – lots of women going into office who I think are going to be fantastic representatives, and a group of people who in general look a lot more like Virginia.

Snow Blind Dopplebock from Starr Hill Brewery.  (7.7% ABV, so be prepared.)

Pint of beer

Here’s to 2018 being better.

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This cat


Has no concept of bills, Congress, the idiot occupying the Oval Office, climate change, climate change deniers, people who think poverty and sickness are a result of moral failings, and the general disappointment that is the country outside her house.

All she knows is that she’s got a warm place to sleep, food when she’s hungry, medical care when she needs it, and more love than she can put up with at times.  God, that must be nice.

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Well, this has been fanfuckingtastic so far

So, yeah, any thoughts I had that this administration would just be mediocre and we could muck through it lasted about 3 seconds.

I realize I don’t really have the skills to fix this, and the Democrats don’t have the numbers (or sometimes it seems the will – WTF) to stop a lot of this crap, so I’m directing my money to groups that do have the skills to fix this through the courts and other avenues.  Cause it’s all going to end up the courts.

If you’d told me 25 years ago, “You’re going to turn in an old liberal hippie who gives money to the ACLU” I probably would not have believed you.  But right now, I couldn’t be happier about the money I sent to the ACLU last week because I could see it actually made a difference at airports across the country this week.

I’ve read that to stay sane, you should focus on one or two issues.  I can’t do that.  It would probably be healthier if I could, but I can’t.

I’ve made a list of groups I’m supporting – thanks to John Oliver for starting this list on his Last Week show.  Feel free to let me know of other groups I may have missed.  (They are in no particular order.)

ETA: If anyone knows of any solid disability rights organizations, please chime in.

ACLU
Planned Parenthood
Center for Reproductive Rights
Natural Resources Defense Council
The International Refugee Assistance Project
NAACP Legal Defense Fund
The Trevor Project
Mexican American Legal Defense & Educational Fund
Whitman Walker Clinic
Pro Publica
Southern Poverty Law Center
Mother Jones
PBS
UN Refugee Fund
Council on American Islamic Relations

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Well that kind of sucked.

I find that I’m rather tired today.  I’m no stranger to voting for losing candidates, but this one definitely hurt a little more.  I didn’t think she’d win in a landslide – I thought the “99% chance of winning” polls were pretty absurd – but I did think she would win.

Hillary Clinton is not perfect – but she’s beyond competent and exceptionally qualified and would have made a good President.  I voted for Bernie Sanders in the primaries – and I had no hesitation about voting for her in the general election.

It was oddly comforting to discover that Secretary Cinton won the popular vote.  (Apparently we have the numbers, we just need to get them to different parts of the country.)  And I am really proud that Virginia went blue again.

The phenomenon of “hidden voters” isn’t new – but it still confounds me that people seem to not ask themselves, “Why don’t I want to admit I’m voting for X?  Is it because the candidate just isn’t viable and I look silly, or is there maybe something fundamentally wrong with them and it reflects poorly on me?”

I am admittedly confounded by the fact that 53% of white women voted for the President-elect.  I know there are women who vote Republican no matter what.  I have voted Republican before.  (In retrospect, I’m quite thankful they lost when I did that.  I was young and stupid.  I got better.)  But I really, genuinely thought he’d just crossed way too many lines to be able to garner that much support.  Granted, it could have been just as simple as “Not Hillary.”  But I don’t think you can vote for someone who has made so many racist, xenophobic, sexist and generally hateful comments without agreeing with some of them.  Which is disappointing.  I had hoped we were better than that.

Part of me wants to lash out at 3rd party voters, but I can’t do it.  Unless you can find every single person that went 3rd party and have them tell you they would have voted for Secretary Clinton had there been no 3rd party candidate, you can’t put it on them.  Sure, it didn’t help – but I am sure there were voters who went 3rd party rather than the President-elect as well.

Earlier this year I found myself thinking that I’d never seen a candidate that made me feel like I needed to a contingency plan.  I brushed it off as being a bit ridiculous.  Suddenly not so ridiculous and I feel like I should be hoarding money in my mattress.

There’s a very real possibility that he will be nothing more than a mediocre President.  But so much damage has already been done.

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