jazzfish: Pig from "Pearls Before Swine" standing next to a Ball O'Splendid Isolation (Ball O'Splendid Isolation)

Last week I went up north with Erin, and promptly fell into a depressive slump. Reasons/triggers include: being Not In My Space, and being aware that My Space didn't exist and hadn't for at least a month, or maybe years; being fairly well isolated physically from most other people; not having had a safe space to begin processing the breakup, without feeling like I needed to Hold Together for someone else; and needing to be halfway functional for some unpleasant stress that Erin was dealing with.

Also I tore another contact on Monday morning. This is becoming a problem. I don't know if it's the dryness up north, or the hard water getting into the contact case, or my bad habit of napping without taking them out, or just a bad batch. Whatever it is it needs to stop.

I didn't fully recognise the depressive episode until last Friday afternoon, when I realised that I'd been meaning to email some folks, or journal about what was going on, all week, and hadn't done that. And I had also only barely kept up with the work I was meant to be doing. That part shocked me into realising that there was something seriously wrong. Shades of the year before I got laid off. Which, I mean. One of my driving principles right now is "I do not ever want to go back to where I was in 2014."

Anyway, that got sorted, though it was more symptom-treating than disease-curing. And instead of going to a weekend-long music festival three hours away I spent the weekend sobbing at random intervals, because I was finally feeling my way through the breakup. That was ... I wouldn't call it good, but it's a good thing to have done. Everything hurts all the time, but a little less now.

Then I came back on Monday morning and moved into my new place.

The move went swimmingly and I continue to recommend Tranquility Movers for all your metro-Vancouver moving needs. I put the stupid Ikea bed's headboard back on the stupid Ikea bed by myself, with assistance from a multitool that I'd borrowed from Erin's storage locker the time I had to let the movers in to take a look at it and see how much stuff there was. (Putting together the stupid Ikea bed requires a Phillips screwdriver, a star-head screwdriver, and a flathead screwdriver.) I'd expected this to be much more of a production: the couple of times I've assisted Emily in rebuilding it, it's taken both of us and a lot of swearing. Yay?

I've put books (roughly 10% of the total library) and DVDs on shelves, and tonight James and Julianne are coming over for a bit to be sociable at me while I shelve the games, and then I can start scooting furniture again. The room is huge, something like 15'x15'. I've got a queen bed and four bookcases in there, and I could have my computer desk set up and it would still feel huge and emptyish. I may see about retrieving my Cargo furniture after all, it will certainly fit.

I don't think it's a long-term place. It's got a tiny galley kitchen with no dishwasher and less counter space than the tiny kitchen in the condo. This is unlikely to do well with two people who aren't both conscientious about doing their dishes immediately and putting them away as soon as they're dry. It's in a good location, but not ideal: far from James and Holly, and not real convenient to anyone else I know. And either I'll get over my living-with-someone-else weirdness, or it will prove too much and I'll spend most of the next several months hiding in my room.

But it's an excellent short-term place. And maybe it's good enough for the medium term, while we try to figure out what we're doing with the condo. And maybe, maybe, it will get me out to some other social-type things of the variety I'm looking for.

"Maybe" is at least better than staring into a blank unknowable wall, which is what the last month has felt like.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
And I'm still here.

Way back in the mists of time my then-girlfriend Steph made me a mix tape with, among other things, David Mallett's sublime folksong "Arthur". And Arthur, where are you now, we need you / We've been much too long without a leader. It took me an unconscionably long time to get around to picking up anything more by him.

I always thought of "Inches and Miles" as the quintessential Dave Mallett breakup song, and I guess it still is. And all things have endings, and beggars have their pride. For my money, though, "Fire" captures the end of a long relationship perfectly. But time here is frozen, the clock ticks no more / Just the ashes and cinders and smell.

Still biking, still getting out to yoga between four and six mornings a week when I'm in town. Prayer-twists are now absolute hell on my upper thighs, likely as a result of biking uphill to yoga. On the bright side I'm enough of a regular now that the teachers think it's worth their time to offer corrections. My flows and backbends seem to be working better. (It's hard to think of it as "worth correcting" when my traitor brain insists on interpreting it as "having been noticed doing something wrong." Always more internal work to be done, I expect.)

I'm still enjoying biking. I'm slower than most of the cyclists I encounter, which is okay with me, and I'm nervous on busy roads. But I like the wind on my face and I like getting where I want to go faster than waiting for a bus and faster than walking. I don't like overheating and feeling like I'm swimming in my shirt. July and more so August are going to be awful for that, I expect. But then it'll be fall again and things will be better.

I went to see a physiotherapist about my weird hip problem while biking. It seems to be a natural consequence of having favoured my right leg for ages, due to a long-standing hip ... "injury" isn't really right, but it's close enough, I guess. So I'm finally getting that taken care of, all manner of fun stretches and pokings and proddings and foldings.

Been starting to think more seriously about tattoos, again. Two data points doth not a trend make but this does seem to towards the end of a significant relationship. I think this time it's more to do with seeing all the gorgeously inked folks at yoga every day.

I can't remember how old I was when I visited Grandmother Taylor's old hometown, and the house on top of Crow Mountain where she grew up and, more relevantly, the cemetary. Must have been high school, but I remember it as being summer weather, which doesn't track with any time in high school. Maybe it was just winter in the south being as bright and warm as it is. Anyway, I've got a distinct memory of looking at gravestones of people I'm distantly related to and deciding simultaneously: that I wanted to be cremated and not left behind; and if I was going to have a markerstone I wanted it to have the epitaph from Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea on it:
Only in silence the word,
only in dark the light,
only in dying life:
bright the hawk's flight
on the empty sky.
That and bits of Richard Siken's Love Song of the Square Root of Minus One (especially blackbird over the dark field but I am invisible) have been rattling around in my head for months. I suspect they signify. I've got what might be an image in my mind, but no ability to describe it yet. Contacted one highly-recommended local artist; not yet heard back from her.

Taking a look at a potential place this evening. It's a shared basement, but it's in a great location (Cambie and King Ed), and it's cheap-ish and supposedly big-ish. The roommate seems alright if a bit more social/talkative than I like. She's also connected with several of the local communities that I'd like to tap into. It is possible that this will be exactly what I need and have been looking for.

It's much more likely that it will drive me nuts and I'll desperately need to find my own place in short order, but this will give me a couple of months to catch my breath anyhow. Not that there's likely to be anything findable. This fucken town.


Jul. 2nd, 2017 08:02 pm
jazzfish: a black-haired man with a big sword. blood stains the snow behind (Eddard Stark)
PSA: [personal profile] uilos and I have split up.

We still love each other a lot, and it's gonna be pretty rough for both of us for awhile. That said, if you feel like you need to choose between Team Tucker and Team Emily, I suspect Team Emily will need the support.

Doubt I'll be replying to comments, but we'll see.
jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
I wonder...: "I wonder if people would say that we shouldn't rush to levy judgement on Dave just because I blogged that he punched me in the face." (Context is everything.)

Are polyamorous relationships hard?: "I just don’t buy that relationships are anywhere near the hard work that self-development is. Once you start focusing on the self-development part, the relationship part seems to be a pretty nice side effect of that." Word.

Tobias Buckell makes a good point in the steampunk war: "[S]teampunk is a just a modern iteration of the previous generation's pastoralism. Tolkien was looking back a couple hundred years to a time just outside his horizon and thinking of it as 'a better age' ... Now in the 21st century, our previous age was industrialization, that’s the age we look back to that’s *just* outside of our horizon where we can strip out all the negative stuff of the Industrial Age and think of it as a simpler age." Fair enough.

(Somehow when I linked to Charlie's rant I neglected to also link to Kate Beaton's definitive takedown of steampunkers. Now I can rectify that, and can also link to Eeyore's steampunk infestation of Star Wars.

Speaking of Star Wars, Ben Kenobi, Private Jedeye: "That's Greedo, the guy Han Solo shot first!"

The showing of GET LAMP and discussion afterwards were neat ("When Dave Lebling was writing Shogun, he'd write to Clavell's agent and ask 'why is this character doing this here?' and after awhile the agent would write back and say 'James doesn't remember.' I have footage of Dave apologizing for Shogun. It's great."). Seen a second time, it's... not exactly unfocused, but sprawling. It touches on an awful lot of stuff. The Richard Bartle rant ("Wouldn't it be great if we had the technology to tap directly into the imagination, so you could see all these things... well, we do, it's called text, and it's been around for about three thousand years") is still my favorite bit. I do want to sit people down and make them watch the Infocom "featurette" and the bit on A Mind Forever Voyaging, though.

And it was good to briefly see [personal profile] plumbob78 and [livejournal.com profile] baranoouji, and to hang out and talk with [livejournal.com profile] daghain and LJless-as-far-as-I-know Jen for awhile. I'm no longer feeling either shut in or overpeopled, which is kind of nice. Balancing the proper quantity (and quality) of People tends to be hard.

But I have books, and writing, and a shiny new computer, and when I need good people I can generally find some. It just takes some looking, sometimes.
jazzfish: d6s stacked in an Escheresque triangle (Head-hurty dice)
My calendar tells me that Friday was National Boss Day. Mine celebrated by getting sick and going home midway through the day. I don't remember where Friday evening went; we must have stayed home.

Satyrday I slept lateish, and made pancakes because I was wanting pancakes instead of an omelette. Eventually I got on the road to head out to D&D, a little later than I might have liked, and stopped at Safeway to pick up crack chips. Was running not nearly so late as I'd thought, so I figured I'd swing by Trader Joe's to pick up a couple things of Vintage Cola (which, incidentally, tastes like the Platonic ideal of Coke).

Cut for traffic bitchery. )Thankfully, after all that I got to hit a bunch of things with a hammer, so it was all okay. (In retrospect a Big Freaking Axe might have been a better choice than the Big Red Hammer. The difference between d10+2 ("d12 brutal 2") and 2d5+2 ("2d6 brutal 1") damage is mostly a matter of taste and whether one prefers a bell curve; the slight deficiency in average damage in the former is compensated for by its "high crit" quality, which means that if roll a 20 on my to-hit roll I get to add an extra die of damage. And most of the time I'm rolling two d20s to hit and picking the highest one, so my chance of a crit is effectively doubled.) (Here endeth the D&D neepery for the day.)

Satyrday evening [livejournal.com profile] daghain was in a play, and it would have been good to have seen that, but I was sufficiently beat that I just wanted to stay home. So I did.

Sunday started off with the sink flooding the kitchen during laundry again, which was about as much fun as it sounds. Eventually I got that cleaned up and finished and headed out for a ramble through Riverbend Park (on the Potomac, just north of Great Falls). Too warm, too many small children, and it turns out that what I was wanting was a ramble in company, but a decent walk anyway. Came home, had a fight with [livejournal.com profile] nixve, had dinner, tried to clear the sink with Drano, vacuumed, wrote email.

Was unfortunately still online at just after one in the morning, which led to an unexpected continuation of said fight, which led unrelatedly yet inexorably to getting sort of half-assedly dumped around two. There followed an hourish phone call during which, after some prompting, the dumping was performed with a whole ass, and then the ritual Changing of the Facebook Relationship Status, and then [personal profile] uilos being a Heroine of the Revolution. I remember hearing the clock chime four, and later hearing it chime 6:15, so I guess I slept for two hours in there. Emailed work to say "not today, sorry" and probably got another 2-3 hours of sleep. [personal profile] uilos also called in sick, so I had someone to fall apart on at random times throughout the day.

The apartment maintenance guys came by to fix the sink pretty quickly, which was nice. Later, I confirmed with [livejournal.com profile] nixve that it was neither a bad dream nor one of those things one says when exhausted but regrets the next morning, and talked with [livejournal.com profile] ancientsong, which helped an awful lot as well. Then home, and crashing.

Today I've listened to Inches and Miles and Trees Still Bend (which made me sniffly the first time I heard it, a little more than a year ago, and now just feels right and true). And now I'm at work, where I have an annoying blurry ache in my eyes and no keyboard tray.

Tonight is sushi with someone cool, and Wednesday is probably pumpkin acquisition, and Thursday is likely to be hanging out with [livejournal.com profile] elf, and Friday is Belly Horror, and Satyrday is Ren Faire and then ABG if we feel up to it, and Sunday is [livejournal.com profile] rislyn's followed by Tribal Cafe. I'm keeping busy, and sociable, and both of these are probably good things.
jazzfish: a black-haired man with a big sword. blood stains the snow behind (Eddard Stark)
[livejournal.com profile] nixve broke up with me last night, 'round two in the morning. Our long-term desires and my short-term needs have both been in decaying orbits for a couple of weeks now at least, and in the end gravity took its inevitable toll.

I would have posted this earlier in the day, but, like the man says, "you can hope against hope that nothing will change."
jazzfish: A small grey Totoro, turning around. (Totoro)
Ten years ago I didn't think I'd see today. I wasn't sure I'd see next month, really. I was something of a mess. I had close-geographically friends, but none that I felt comfortable talking to about what was going on. (Mostly because I was having trouble acknowledging it myself.)

Ten years ago was a week after Technicon and two weeks after a spring break I'd spent with [livejournal.com profile] scathach and her family. Ten years ago was my fourth semester in college.

Ten years ago I followed [livejournal.com profile] uilos back to her dorm room rather than go home and lie there on my own in the dark.

It's been a bumpy ride at times but I wouldn't trade it.

Happy ten years, babe.
jazzfish: Pig from "Pearls Before Swine" standing next to a Ball O'Splendid Isolation (Ball O'Splendid Isolation)
Twenty-four hours ago I was pretty well convinced that I was on my way to getting just about everything I wanted out of life.

Between personal revelations, a good hard look at my finances, and the realisation of a few things that I was just plain ignoring, I can now say that the chances of that happening are slim at best. Reply hazy, try again later.

So today I clean. Because, like a fifties housewife, I may see the world come to an end tomorrow but my house will be spotless when it does.

If my dryer were larger I could probably get laundry done in fewer than six loads. This task may spread over to tomorrow. Breakfast dishes are done (mm, pancakes). The bathroom is in the process of being swept. After that comes the task of scrubbing the tub, and the less scary tasks of scrubbing the toilet and sink. Perhaps I will finally get around to vaccuuming the other rooms as well, now that I have a vaccuum cleaner. (Which may or not work, actually.)

Once things other than laundry are done I will sit down with my tea and book. Unless I'm going to Rockville tonight after all. Quis scit.

Update: Last load of laundry in the wash, bathroom cleaned, vaccuuming delayed 'til another day, definitely going to Rockville. Need to sweep kitchen, also.
jazzfish: a black-haired man with a big sword. blood stains the snow behind (Eddard Stark)
Which is the greater miracle: the stars in the sky, or the idea that Someone put them there?

What I require in a romantic partner: someone who will be delighted by the mushrooms sprouting up after the rain. Everything else follows from this.

I am blessed.

There's nothing specific about night driving that's attractive, except for the wind in my hair. I can get the same sensations from night walking. Walking's arguably better: I can focus on the night and the travel without having to worry about whether I'll hit a deer in the next five seconds. I could have kept going all night and not felt like I'd gotten someplace I wanted to be.

The solitude calms me; the travel gives me a reason for the solitude, something to focus on.

The past is realer
Than the present to me now
And I've got memories to last me


jazzfish: Jazz Fish: beret, sunglasses, saxophone (Default)
Tucker McKinnon


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Adventures in Mamboland

"Jazz Fish, a saxophone playing wanderer, finds himself in Mamboland at a critical phase in his life." --Howie Green, on his book Jazz Fish Zen

Yeah. That sounds about right.

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