7 months at Dunwich Abbey: A State of the Fox post

Ugg, I've been productive today, and now I'm having what's becoming a Tsathoggua Tsathurday tradition, slowly building anxiety and an inability to focus on anything"fun". But, at least I've noticed it, so maybe I can get it under control.

Oh, for the curious, I managed to get the books I keep on my desk reorganized, using a "spice rack" shelving unit to add more room, looks a little weird, but it works. I also finally got the printer I bought months ago setup, plugged in, and configured. Lexmark color laser thingie. (People who know me know I dislike working with printers because they are...quirky, especially with linux). Simple config, seems to just work. Oh, and got packages, spicy Latin phrases, pins from a Kickstarter I'd forgotten about, and the bi-yearly journal foo from the Friends of Arthur Machen. (aka amazing levels of book nerdery).

As the subject says, today is 7 months since I moved in, and it's a little past 5 months since I basically went para-hermit. My plans for this place have slowed glacially, but bit by bit things are coming together. The library is just about setup, though nothing is terribly organized. But that will probably take forever, given how easily it is for me to slip into vapor lock right now.

Which will be my segue into the brainmeats. Not much has changed, Same executive dysfunction, distraction, doomscrolling news/social media. But I might be seeing an uptick. I've actually gotten some reading done lately, gotten back into DuoLingo: Latin edition, and even worked on some non work computer geek stuff. I still get the sads at the drop of a hat, and anxiety is everywhere. But I have meds, I'm putting various coping skills to use. One day at a time, one tentacle in front of another.

Other than that...oh yeah, any travel plans I had for this year are gone. The one last thing I wanted to travel for was the HPLFF in Portland. But the folks that run it made the logical/common sense call to make it all online, both festivals. So next weekend is a short fest, to replace the one that would be playing in Providence, and first weekend of October will be the big festival. I'm sad I don't get to be with my fellow Lovecraftians in person, which honestly is the best part of the 'fest. But I'll get my movie fixes, and hopefully we can use technology to get some socializing at a distance done. I'm also taking an little extra PTO for both, so I can be extra chill.

Ok, I got distracted from this post...so I'll go ahead and call it a post. And yeah, I know...two posts in one day. Don't get too excited.

Stan: 7 year anniversary

7 years ago today I went from feeling off, to feeling ill, to the doc-in-a-box, to the ER with necrotizing fasciitis. Aka a flesh eating bacteria. Aka "Stan". I spent 2 weeks in the hospital, had 3 rather invasive surgeries, and spent 4+ weeks at home with a would vac and IV antibiotics. I could have died, the ER surgeon said if I'd waited another day, I'd have had an 20% chance of surviving. As it is, I have a beaut of a scar that it would be exceeding rude to show anyone randomly (the infection was in my groin). Luckily I wasn't body shy before this, because I was dropping my pants for a whole lot of people who _did_ want to see. Seems while Stan is not uncommon, it's uncommon enough that every doctor I saw (and there were a bunch) had an intern or 3 in tow, and would ask if I minded being a show and tell subject? And you know me, I like to help educate people.

So yeah, 7 years. Some days it seems like only yesterday. Other times it feels like it happened to someone else. So yeah. Btw, if you find an odd swelling on your body, and at the same time feel like you're coming down with the flu, get your ass to a doctor. It's a crappy time of recovery, but it beats being dead.

5 months at Dunwich Abbey: A State of the Fox post

Today marks 5 months living in the new place. And we just clocked over 3 months in "social isolation". I haven't done much with the place. I more or less vapor locked for a couple of months with making any kind of move in progress. But the last few weekends I've managed some progress. Most of the books are on shelves, and organized by subject/genre. Yes, the Cthulhu Mythos/weird fic takes up the most room still, history is crammed into 1.5 shelves, with about the same for esoterica, and some other random subjects shelved. Things like generic horror, sci-fi, and historical fiction are all still boxed up, due to a lack of shelf space, and a lack of minions to help me assemble replacement and upgrade shelves. Last post I talked about a reorg, but after some fan rearranging I've got the study back to something comfortable most of the time. So I'm mostly focusing on getting the library and home theatre areas done. Yeah, I bought a new large-ish TV to watch stuff in the living room. The idea, and practice, is that I can watch movies with less distraction there. Especially foreign flicks that are subbed. Still have the original TV in the study, along with most of the knickknacks, some books, and computers. I'm still tempted to combine the two, especially when I remember one of my dream layouts with a giant library and computers and stuff. But that's a bunch of effort, and I like the current study layout. So I guess we'll see what happens once social distancing doesn't need to be so distant.

Mental health is still all over the place. Really, this is the worst time to be afraid to reach out to folks, but I'm even less social than I was before this. I hate phone calls even more, I ramble, I try to be funny and fill in the silences. Then I over analyze what I say and feel horrible. Going back to whatever constitutes the 'new normal' is anxiety generating as heck, because my various coping skills are now designed around keeping me sane without outside contact. Stress is high enough that I don't read a whole lot, save audiobooks and podcasts and wiki pages. I watch a lot of movies, especially my comfort flicks. Work is...well lets just not go there right now. I saw my pshrink last week, via telemed. I'm doing the right things as best as I can, I'm not utterly strung out (The unspoken why we had a tele call vs a regular call, harder to cover up being majorly fucked up). The one thing he wants me to do is 'go walking' which, given it's the season of Hot, is pretty limited to me pacing in my apartment. Which is bugging me, because I really wish I could go to the Atlantic and soak my feet like last year, or go walking through the woods without dying of heat. But, I can't. I can at least daydream about the outside world. "natural" white noise at night allows me to daydream (before the meds kick in), and a lot of those daydreams involve the ocean, or rock scrambling like I used to do. Maybe when fall hits, I'll be able to do something that feels like that. Assuming Covid19 hasn't gone from bad to worse. Oh...to let you know how serious I'm taking it, It's been over 100 days since I entered a bookstore. I've gotten plenty of books, yay small bookstores with online browsing, plus Amazon. But I have to have some idea what I want. Bookstore I can walk into, and follow where the book calls take me...and then I find the book I didn't know I needed. *sigh* Texas says "It's safe" but the numbers beg to differ. But that being said, I'm probably going to say fuck it one of these days, go the full monty, and then wash myself in salt water and/or hydrogen peroxide when I get home.

So what's good in life, by Crom? Well, I'm having a staycation this week. Taking Thursday and Friday off so I can focus on the online Portland Horror Film Festival, run by my friends who do the HPLFF in October. I'd actually quasi planned coming out to Portland for it last year, see what Portland in June is like. But with Covid19, they have to social distance, so they moved everything online. So I now have horror fun from Wednesday night to Sunday day. And nothing major to do but watch movies and shorts, whatever online snarkery happens, Good to have something to look forward to, because beyond that it's a field of unknown. Let us pray that Tsathoggua and Cthulhu see fit to grant us some kind of break. Or at least the strength to suck it up a while longer, or the bravery to risk the virus for something more important than retail therapy or boredom (and that's as close as I'm getting the politics on my blog)

Reorg at Dunwich Abbey

Ok, I have a plan for tomorrow. I've mentioned that my study seems to get unpleasantly warm unless I do some crazy stuff with fans and crank the AC down, while the library is cooler most of the time. So the plan is to move my desk and workstation into the library, as well as the TV and media PC, see how that works out temp wise. If things go as planned, then I'll move the art and knickknacks, and everything else, and turn the study into a storage/second library. Eventually when I get the new bookcases, I'll move the old ones in here, and put up the scifi/fantasy, and some of the other stuff I won't need right at hand, as well as just plain storage. It's going to be a pain to do (basically a mini move), but I think between the temp change and having more books around, and more room on the far wall for art will = a better lair vibe.

The plan is to wake up, eat, and start working while it's still relatively cool outside (and cool inside) and go from there. Assuming I sleep ok tonight, and wake up with some amount of vim and vigor. We'll see.

Randomness: Vulpine has needs.

I need a vacation, a Hyper-geometric gate to somewhere on the North Atlantic so I can get some time with my favorite ocean, a sailing cruise that somehow also manages to stay 1 fathom from the rest of the folks on the ship, and a midnight snogging session with a squid girl with tentacles that go all the way up, (or a fish woman with really nice rack of gills). (Deep ones and their hybrids are oddly immune to Covid19. Still vulnerable to gill ick though)

Why weird ?

Before you post an article or comment about "Why were the 70's so weird?" just remember. The 70's were weird. End statement. Us GenXs were just as strange as our boomer cohorts. Even the Silent (who rarely were) and Best (a lot were, many weren't) generations got kind of loopy in the 70's.

Also, the 60s were strange, the 50's were loopy, the 40s were all over the place, the 30s were twisted, the 20's were gaga, and the 10's were cuckoo for coca leaves.

The 80s were crazy, the 90's smelled funky, the 00s were ought of their flippin' minds, the 10s (2, electric boogaloo) were bizarro and the new 20's well...are a series of homicidal maniacs knocking on the door.

We've always been weird, we'll always be weird, and some of us will always complain that the old days weren't as weird as now, and others will say the old days were 3 times as weird as now.

Just accept it.

It's weird.

Joseph S. Pulver Jr

Est novum regem in Carcosa. Salutant regem in flavo, Princeps est ad Astra Nigrum, electus ex Kassogtha. Sit autem regula in aeternum.

Resquieat in pace et miraculum, Josephus Pulvis

(for the non-Latin reading folks)

There is a new king in Carcosa. Salute the King in Yellow, the Ruler of the Black Stars, the favored of Kassoghta. May his rule be eternal.

Rest in peace and wonders, Joe Pulver


The First Quarter in Dunwich

Got the keys to Dunwich Abbey 3 months ago. I've also been in hermit mode for 34 days. Not much has changed, I've made a smidge of progress on book organizing, I've dealt with work foo, the post migration foo has been catching up with everything else. Had to drive to the office twice and the datacenter twice this week, mostly due to a lack of communication. I took Monday off because I seriously just didn't care to talk to anyone, I'm also taking tomorrow off for a similar reason...but not completely.

Tomorrow is the anniversary of Mom's passing. It's been five years, seems like it was just the other day. I'm probably going to be ok, but I think this is the worst time to take a gamble on that, and to deal with some really frustrating meetings. So I'll try to decompress some, have a good cry or two if the spirits move me, then back to the looney bin on Friday.

Oh, I officially found out today I am not currently running a fever. Went for allergy shots today, and since my doc's office is attached to a hospital, I had to get my temp taken. Normal. Doctor's staff did it again, also normal. So that hopefully will shut up my hypochondriac limbic system. Otherwise it's the same, random coughing fits when the phlegm runs.

So long story short, not much has changed in the last few months, other than kind of getting used to the new place, and the new town. And the big changes/additions/etc require help, and that violates the whole social distancing thing. But eventually it will work out. Until then, I'll keep tentacling along.

Migration is done

Spent the weekend working the migration. Not as bad as I thought it was going to be, but not as good as it could have been. Anxiety levels were stupid high the entire time. Worked with audiobooks, mostly HPL and MR James stories, with a few podcasts on the side. Clocked 26 hours over the last two days, on top of the work week. Technically I'm still on the clock, but when it clocks after 2000 I'm heading to bed and meds. Maybe a little book time. Very little.

So what's next? Monday and possibly Tuesday will be kind of crazy with support requests and reminding people to read their darn email. I'm hoping to take a day or two off as comp time. I put off a bunch of stuff because I knew the weekend was going to be hard. Computer stuff, work around the apartment. Convincing the neighborhood crows that I'm their friend. Maybe even making myself disconnect for a few hours and read.

So the stressor is done, for now. (Beyond the rest of the stressors). Dear Cthulhu and Tsathoggua, please grant me some restful sleep.

22 Days in the Hole

Quick post, so I can have a record. Not much has changed. I've managed to not get sick, anxiety is a bit higher. It doesn't help that this weekend is the Big Migration (TM). I worked a half day today, mostly. Been hovering waiting for..."something" about it. The fact there's been almost radio silence isn't doing much for my anxiety. I guess I wing it. I'm not starting my side of things til tomorrow morning, and going to try to crash at the usual time. Hopefully tomorrow isn't too long, and Sunday's testing goes smoothly. Monday and Tuesday are probably troubleshooting unexpected stuff. I'll probably take a PTO day or two this next week, because I doubt I'll destress any this weekend.

Big store run today, wasn't too crazy, and I managed to find almost all I wanted/needed. Also got my happy pills. Hopefully I won't have to go to the store again for at least a week. Not much else to say. Hope no one's gone too round the twist, and I'll talk another time.