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)

Welcome back to the roaring ’20s

Well, it's 2020. The holidays are done (at least the standard ones of US folks). It's been a rough time for me, I ended up with a really nasty sinus infection on Cthulhumas eve. I've mostly spent every day since in pain, and really screwed up mood wise. Really missing Jessi, in some ways losing her was harder than losing my Mom, she had a full life, and I had years to ready myself for when she passed. *sigh* I miss you sis, every damn day.

So I'm behind on packing, so after talking to my boss, I'll be take a couple extra days off, so I can work on packing. The living room is 80% done (that's where most of the books live), but the bedroom is a major project unto it's self. I need to throw all that stuff into boxes (or into trash), then I need to start going through the computer rig, figure out what I'm trashing, and what needs to be kept.

I'm not doing a 'decade in review', or even a year in review. I'm not up for that much introspection. 2019 was the year I hit peak (for now) Lovecraft with visits to both Necronomicon and the HPLFF. Got to meet a bunch of folks I've only talked to online. Reaffirmed that I love both Providence and Portland, even if I can't move there at the moment. I don't have much traveling in mind for 2020, most of my discretionary income is going to the move, but I will manage yet another trip to Portland for the film fest. It's the 25th one, so it's bound to be one for the history books. But besides that, my vacations will probably be 'staycations' putting the new place together.

New years resolutions. I usually do them on my spawning day, but I didn't this year. So I think I'll do a small set, Big thing will be 'survive move, and get new place put together, with some others related to health, and keeping track of my reading again. And with that, I'm calling this a post. I've been writing it most of the day in dribs and drabs. So here's to 2020. Please let it not suck so badly.

Midweek rambles

Having a rough day of it. Started off ok, played chauffeur for a friend who needed a lift to a doc appointment, a friend I haven't seen in the flesh in many years. Got to meet her two kitties, both were skittish about me, but one warmed enough for pets, and the other kept staring at me with really gorgeous eyes. I'm patient, I'll win the kitten over eventually.

But afterwards, I felt off. I was near Recycled Books, so I made a stop, but that didn't help much. Got a couple of books, but one is a duplicate of something I already had. Got lunch and I was going to do some other errands, but I decided that the cope tank was just about empty. Came home, deal with frustrating doctor/insurance foo (never try to get a referral when you're changing insurance copies in the next month and a half). Then found a letter from the DocInABox about 'we're trying to reach you.' Call them, get the run around, finally get someone to call me back to tell me 'Oh we're calling about the referral. Why the actual fuck? Why couldn't a receptionist have looked that up? Probably because it was filed as something HIPPA esque I guess. Still damn frustrating. I am grateful I'm off this week. I'm sure I'd be yelling in the office sooner or later.

Since then I've watched a few movies, had at least two short crying jags over Jessi thoughts. Almost got into a yelling match with a friend, but it got better. We talked through my distinct lack of interest in Turkey Day, as I said right now I feel 0 thankfulness. So, I may just pass. Going to decide Thursday when I get up. I'm not in a social mood, and I don't think I'm up for a fairly large group of people. But, we'll see.

I'm trying to plot apartment stuff, but lacking info like the Spectrum demarc location, and where the power plugs are is causing my plans to be...vague. I can't just go in and look, the current tenant isn't moving out til end of Dec, and no way would I ask to see it. So I have to wait. And to be honest, I'll change my mind 10 times in the next 10 weeks about layouts and plans. So trying to get ideas, but not get attached to them. I really should hide the floorplan, and just dream what I want, then when I have access to the place, I can make my ideas fit. We'll see.

I'm now doing some basic geeking, upgraded my Fedora server VM to 32, and it's being flaky. My OpenSuSE VM also flaked and died. I haven't had a lot of good computer luck lately. Oh well, I'm not the home sysadmin I once was. I do this all day at work. I've been meaning to work on packing and whatnot, but...see above where I said I had a near empty cope tank. Tomorrow I'm trying to not make many 'plans' I need to pick up meds and visit the store, but besides that I want to try to get some more down time. I may try to avoid the internets, and try to catch up on reading, if I can get the focus (I have very little). Kind of shocked I wrote this out without quitting and rewriting. But I think I'll call this a post. Laters cultists.

A Whole Bunch of Random

I've been random the last few days. So I've posted some odd stuff on Facebook. Some of it needs to be posted here as well.

Lovecraftian:
"We got the gills that give the thrills!" aka the New Esoteric Order of Dagon motto.

A new term for my clinical depression:
Oh, while listening to M.R. James' 'Count Magnus' while driving yesterday, came up with a good euphemism for 'being diagnosed (again) with depression'. 'Taking the Black Pilgrimage to Chorazin.' Seems fitting, since I came back with a follower that will never leave. Luckily (?) it rarely sucks the faces off of people. So I may start calling my swings as 'my minion from Chorazin.' Better than a black dog. I like dogs.

(don't worry, this isn't a cry for help or anything, just a random bit of brain foo. Change what you call a thing, and you change how you react. Words have power, and weird words make me feel 'better')

For those who are curious, you can find the story at the following link Text of Count Magnus

and if you just want a summary, check out The Wikipedia page on the story.

How M.R. James described me right before my Dad was born:
One more M.R. James bit. From the intro to 'A Neighbour's Landmark'. Sound like anyone you may know ? *wink*

"Those who spend the greater part of their time in reading or writing books are, of course, apt to take rather particular notice of accumulations of books when they come across them. They will not pass a stall, a shop, or even a bedroom-shelf without reading some title, and if they find themselves in an unfamiliar library, no host need trouble himself further about their entertainment. The putting of dispersed sets of volumes together, or the turning right way up on those which the dusting housemaid has left in an apoplectic condition, appeals to them as one of the lesser Works of Mercy."

It's been an odd morning, but all things considered I'm doing ok I think. Ciao.

A Year of Lovecraft

It's definitely been a Lovecraftian year. Tons of new books, audio and art. Also the Cage/Stanley adaptation of 'The Colour Out of Space', and not 1 but 2 Lovecraftian conventions for me. Yep, I've decided to go to Portland for the HP Lovecraft Film Festival this year. I managed a decent costing flight, and a cheap hotel stay for a Thurs-Sunday visit. So I get to see my Innsmouth West pals, visit certain favorite bookstores, and get a second dose of Mythos Community. It shall be glorious.

Besides the Portland trip, the local film festival is doing a showing of Re-Animator as well, which I may attend. Plus there's my spawning day in a little over a month, which should count as pretty Lovecraftian. Plus, I have some friends who've mostly convinced me that I want to go camping in later October. (yes, you can start gasping in surprise now...) And while camping isn't what I'd call directly Lovecraftian, you all know I'll make it at least a little Mythos-y. Maybe I should go look for a Cthulhu flag or banner?

After that the year winds down into Cthulhumas, then 2020 starts with hopefully a nice upgrade to the cult lair/library. I'm kind of thinking I won't be doing much traveling next year. The move and furnishing upgrades I'm thinking will eat a good chuck of funds, as well as PTO. But we'll see, for all I know I'll swing a good bonus again and that will cover the move, but I'm not counting on it til it's in my hot little tentacles. And who knows what else may come up. I'm a nut for planning and plotting in advance, but other than moving I have to leave 2020 as a series of question marks, at least for now.

So that's my thoughts on the subject. As with everything, this is subject to change. For now, I'm trying to avoid the siren song of book hunting, and/or the urge to order in a carb heavy pizza or Chinese food. Two doctor visits this week, one for my diabetes/blood pressure meds, and one with my hematologist to discuss the quality of my blood. Should be fine, if a little stressful. Catch you all later.

Genealogy is what you make of it.

I had a random Lovecraftian thought explaining my quirkiness. From Dad's side of the family I get a smidge of Innsmouth blood, we do come from Massachusetts and spent most of of the 19th century in nautical pursuits. But from Mom's side there seems to be a link to the ghoul cults of old, probably related to the tunnels underneath Green Wood Cemetery, or maybe that bunch in Red Hook. The two strains conflict with each other, explaining the screwy brainmeats as well as my love of the ocean, yet my lousy swimming skins. Or my claustrophobia mixed with a curiosity about tunnels, caves and other subterranean oddness.

So what does that make me? Well a mix of Deep One and cannibalistic cultists, wouldn't that make me a Sea-Ghul ?

Yes, this is a shaggy dogfish pun ;)

Merry Shortest Night of the Year (Northern Hemisphere edition)

It's finally going to start to get darker again. Thank Cthulhu. Sadly, it won't get any cooler for 3 months. Darn it. Been a mixed week. Some good stuff at work, some soso stuff. After a lot of thinking, and a discussion with my fellow admin, I decided that I'll be in the office 3 out of 5 days most weeks, vs the single day. I'm pretty non-social as it is, and not leaving the house on that regular a basis would probably be a bit much. Of course I regret it every night coming home, between the heat and the traffic it runs me over.

On a happier note, I have a plan for a 2020 trip. Thinking about visiting LA for a long weekend. The HP Lovecraft Historical Society (which I'm a card carrying member of) is based in LA, and I'd like to see the HQ building and see the gang in their native habitat. Plus there are a few bookstores I'm told I need to visit, some Jack Parsons related places to visit (JPL tops the list, I know Dad would have wanted to go as well). I'm also thinking of staying a night onboard The Queen Mary not to be a wannabe ghost hunter, but for the history (ok, a little for the ghosts). Plus there's plenty of historical foo out there. I'm not going to do the big tourist things, no Empire of the Mouse or Hollywood blvd or such for me, even if I want a lightsaber on occasion *wink*. No real plans for when the trip will happen. I was thinking after the new year at some point, but with moving around that time we'll see, with PTO and fundage. But should be fun.

So, that's about it for right now. I'll catch you all later.

Late night rambles.

Staying up later than I usually manage. I'm tired, but I'm jittery. So I'm futzing around, realized there was a work server that alerted last night due to low space during a backup, then recovered...but I didn't want to get texted in the night, so I threw a bunch of space at it. (New backup routine, and I haven't quite figured out how much space it will need, darn needy databases). I'm also upgrading a home VM to the latest Ubuntu server available, because I am a nerd.

To be honest, I don't want to go to sleep. Last night's anxiety dreams were very unpleasant, even though I don't remember details. So I'm avoiding sleep. Eventually I'll crash, but not for a while. I have plans for tomorrow (finally going to see the new Godzilla flick), but there's no time frame...so hopefully I can just sleep in once I crash. We'll see.

But for now, more comfort soup, some silly TV, and geekery. Then book and bed and hopefully dreams of tentacles and Caroline Munro ;)

Wish I was Goin’ Down to Dunwich

Lots of stuff and things lately. Finally finished the Atlassian migration. It does still require work, upgrading things to a supported version that allows me to migrate the next set of Atlassian foo. But that's for another week. Speaking of Carcosa Corp, found out we're offically moving offices to the main set of offices in DFW. Not sure how much it will apply to me, since there's no current plan to move the DC we have. So that's something we need to work out. Move is in the next quarter or two. Looking forward to yet another wild fun of moving offices.

Speaking of moving, it's offical, I'm not moving this year. Too much other stuff going on. Work, timing, my own stress levels, and when the season of hot hits the area. So I signed a 9 month leason (starts May 1st), so I'll be trying to move right after the New year 2020. No idea where I'm going still. Will depend on work, on what I can find, and honestly, where is the best location for access to my favorite book haunts. So instead of moving I'm going to do a major declutter and moving of stuff into storage, and getting rid of things I'll never use or need again. (already have several bags of clothes to go to Goodwill). So hopefully when it comes time to move, I won't be in a huge scramble. We'll see.

Weekend was helping a friend out, managed to get myself majorly dusted, and tweaked my back. So I'm taking it easy tonight, watching movies and taking it easy. Tomorrow is probably chores, assuming I feel like moving around. Then it's another crazy week of work. And that's all I have, and have had for the last couple of hours. So I guess I'll call this a post.

A subject, a subject. My kingdom for a subject!

Well it's almost 3 weeks into the new year. Been a crazy few weeks. Work went from 0 (vacation) to 60 in nothing flat. This weekend was my latest attempt to migration 'The Software in Yellow' (my new nickname for the Atlassian Suite). Things were completed this afternoon, and testing will start tomorrow AM. *crosses all the tentacles*. I'm really sick of dealing with this, hopefully I'll get some kind of break soon from looking at it. We'll see.

Non work stuff, I rolled back the upgrade on Dagon soon after I made the post last time, the new SSD I had failed, so I rushed to plug in the old one. Which solved a number of frustrations. New computer plan is to build a computer new system, install the latest on that. Then transfer stuff from system to system, so I can work out the kinks without having to live through them. My new project though is a new media player system, I'm finding Shoggoth just doesn't have the oomph to deal with some media. So I'm picking up a gently used Lenovo tiny PC, going to throw some flavor of Ubuntu/Debian/Mate on it, and plug that in. Same basic setup, just more power.

Another project is getting pushed back. I had a plan to move when my lease was up this spring. But given how work is, and how the universe has been acting, along with the amount of stuff I need to do before the move, makes me think I just want to push it back one last time. Gives me time to plot, plan and organize. I'm also thinking of getting a storage unit, help clear out some space so I have room to organize easier. Plus I have stuff that I don't want to get rid of, but I don't need on hand all the time. Same with clearing some shelf space. We'll see how that all goes. (I've planned this about a dozen times in the past I think)

Not much else to speak of. This has been sitting open without anything else to type for a long while now. Going to call it a post. Hoping tonight I'll get some decent sleep, and that tomorrow's migration testing goes smooth. I'm also off Monday, which will probably be a hermit and chill day. At least, that's what I hope.