400 days in the hole

Hopefully I'm not the only person who's had variants of Humble Pie's "30 Days in the Hole" playing in my head. No, just me huh? Ok. Yep, as of 1900 CDT, I hit 400 days since I started the whole isolation thing. Yeah, I know I've not been a complete hermit, I should have clocked off at 395 when I went to visit Amythest and got real hugs, and cat time. But round numbers, we'se likes them.

So what does that mean? Well, since that day in March 2020, I've pretty much phoned in my existence. Haven't read much, can't say I've done anything to earn employee of the year, or done more than the bare minimums to keep going. Not being mean to myself, it's a fact I've been running on auxiliary power and batteries, Most of us have. But, it's been 400 days. Time to let engineering bring the warp core back online.

(Have I mentioned I've read a lot of Star Trek wiki articles lately?)

So, I'm going to start working on eating betterish, and not ordering out every day. I'm going to get my tuchus out of the computer chair, and get more exercising than me going to get water every hour or so. I'm going to be social more with my friends, at least those where we're safe from each other virii wise (still going to be careful though, Mom did not raise an idiot. RIP Mom). I'm still going to do most of my shopping by remote, and wear a mask and avoid strangers, and everything else that keeps me and others safe. While trying to live a little.

6 months from tomorrow, I hit another Spawning day. 6 months to make some improvements. To catch up with people I care about. To open the gates to N'kai and deliver Tsathoggua upon this realms of snacks... Ok, that last bit should have been using my inner monologue, but I'm pretty sure that's never coming back after the last year of saying pretty much what came to mind when it did.

3 day weekend and books

(originally posted on the book of face)

Well it's Friday, it's payday. Got up before my work alarm would have woke me up. Got ready, did my run to Recycled Books. Timed it well, got to the door a minute before they opened the door. Got some old "Whispers" issues (or collections, not 100% sure), and a couple of books on books. Didn't stay all that long, didn't even go down to the basement to look at history. I think my inner collector was happy with the "Whispers", and the books on books were the cherries on the book hunting cake. Went from there to a local Lowes to return the drill I bought earlier this week. It's a good took, but that money is better spent elsewhere, especially after I figured out my little drill/screwdriver is good enough as long as I change the batteries fairly quick.

Got home right around 11, so instead of bumming around for an hour, I switched my PTO to 2 hours and logged in. A dev wanted to ask how much of a pain setting up a local ClamAV mirror would be for the devnet boxes. I said "Probably reading a page of documentation, going "oh I remember doing this." then setting it up. Only problem is I don't want to run it off a dev's machine, so I'll do it as part of Tuesday's work which includes throwing up a test box for my own use, which will include the mirror now. Gotta keep myself busy.

No wild 3 day weekend plans, well besides the fortnightly supply run. If my back and shoulder are up to it, I may do some reorganizing, but I say that every weekend I think. Shudder has "Slaxx" the killer jeans movie, which sounds like what the mad scientist ordered for tonight. Ok, I'll catch you lot later.

Almost a Year

Next Friday marks 1 year being mostly isolated. Last time I was out with a bunch of my friends. Time flies when life goes whackadoodle. Not going to dwell much on the last year, lets talk now. Tomorrow, I get my first COVID-19 vaccine. (may be the only, I honestly have no clue which one I'm getting). So not the end, but maybe a big waypoint? What will change in Vulpine's life? Very little, Still going to mask the same, still going to avoid crowds and interior social situations, unless both parties are vaccinated, and even then probably not often. Basically until the mortality/"Long Haul" rates drop and someone smarter than me says "Ok, you can do this now." And no, politicians don't count. Sucks, but I rather not get people sick, or kill them.

And starting this next work week, we take apart the Carcosa Corp datacenter. Nearly everything is migrated to 'The Cloud' (a term I loathe). So Monday I start shutting down things to see if we missed anything vital, then we start unracking things to be hauled off. I'm a little sad, I've spent half a decade dealing with that tiny DC (compared to The Shoggoth Pit). Going to be weird saying goodbye. On the other tentacle, will be nice to not have to drive into another county to fix things.

I had plans on other things to write, but yeah... I lost whatever they were. So I guess I'll call this a post. Ciao cultists.

1 year at Dunwich Abbey

1 year ago yesterday I got the keys to the new place at Dunwich Abbey. Boy it has been a heck of a year. Not going to try to recap, too much. So here's the status, signed a new lease on the place that kicks in Feb 1. I'm definitely _not_ done with unpacking, or organizing. I can't say I'll be in better straits this year, though I hope to be. Need more bookshelves. If I was a smart cultist, I'd spend this long weekend organizing, but instead I'll be cleaning most of it (was down with a sinus infection most of the week and things got a little...crazy). But even with the disorganization, definitely love this place a lot more than I ever did with Ch√Ęteau Innsmouth. I outgrew there years ago, but fear and funds kept me from moving. Here's to more years of coolness.

2020 Wrap Up

Well, 2020 is less than 8 hours from being over (at least here at Dunwich Abbey). And boy has it been one hell of a corker. Not going to do a major run down, because in that way lies depression cycles. Nor am I going to plan for the future, as well chaos is reigning and my skills at prognostication are about as good as always. So, here's some random foo from the year.

Finally got my ass moved. Signed a 2nd lease for another year. Still not all unpacked, but it's not been the most energetic year here. Still beats the old place.

Recommended with some friends I'd lost contact with, stayed in contact with other friends, and met some new friends. Definitely a net postive there.

Had a long dry patch when it came to reading, definitely bought a lot more books than I read. I'm slowly getting back into the reading vibe, which is good because there's been a lot of good books this year. Lots more scheduled for next year as well. Hopefully at some point I can get more bookshelves in here without worrying about it being a plague vector.

Not a lot else that's sanity safe. Health is ok, I really could be doing better, but well this is the year where 'good enough' is really 'great'. Mental health dropped some, but it's mostly been steady at a kind of lower level, again given the situation, it's a win.

So yeah, that's my very short, very shallow thoughts on 2020. My plans for 2021 are about the same as the last 9 months. Stay safe, wait til it's my turn to get a vaccine, keep my friends safe, and hopefully some time in 2021 get to do more of the things I enjoy outside of Dunwich Abbey. So here's to the future, may it be gentle to us all.

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)