Sunday, June 24, 2018

doggy equilibrium troubles

Out of the blue last night, poor Darwin stood up and then fell off his cushion on the couch. We thought he had hurt a leg...he was wobbling and falling down, couldn't walk a straight line. But when it didn't get better and he started head-tilting and stumbling even more, it was time for a late night trip to the emergency room.

Long story short: idiopathic vestibular disease, likely due to something in the brain (rather than an ear issue). If he doesn't get better in the next few days then this is the new normal, though the prognosis is usually pretty favorable (crossing fingers). In the meantime, we try to keep him quiet, monitor him so he doesn't hurt himself, watch for nausea, keep him eating and drinking, and move things out of his way so he doesn't bang into them.

It can be amusing to watch him stagger and bobble and wobble, but the confusion the poor little guy has at it all cuts through any smiles pretty quickly.

Poor little kiddo. :^(

Thursday, May 31, 2018

sir tom

An unexpectedly awesome time last night...saw Tom Jones at the Mountain Winery with Will and some good friends. Dinner at Pasta Armellino, dessert of some sinfully good chocolates from Plumed Horse Chocolaterie, then off to the show (after a quick detour back home to pick up the tickets that Stacey left on the counter <blush> ).

This is now the fourth time I've seen Sir Tom in concert (including once in Vegas, which was the best), and he is still rocking it. I had originally gotten the tickets back in June of last year, with the show being scheduled for September. But sadly, Sir Tom fell ill and the show was postponed until almost a year later.

It was worth the wait. It had the obligatory cheesy bits ("What's New, Pussycat?" ranks highest), but also some soulful and powerful moments (hardest for me was him singing "Green, Green Grass of Home"...that was one of the songs Dad had me play at his funeral).

The only downside to the evening was that it was frickin' FREEZING. Well, freezing for the Bay Area, which means windy and in the 40s. But when you are sitting on plastic seats at an outdoor venue on a windy peak after sundown, it gets quite chilly. Even the Welsh boys on stage were shivering and talking about the cold, which is saying something. We were saved by our buddy and his quick-thinking purchase of sweatshirts and blankets...he managed to snag the last two blankets they had. <grin>

Good night, good music, good friends.

The man is turning 78 next month...and he can still belt out a song.

It was a packed house. Even with the eight-month
postponement, the venue was sold out.

Yup, that's a sousaphone. Unexpected, and weirdly, it worked.

The opening act was "Into the Ark", his mentees from
The Voice UK, who also joined him onstage for a few songs.

Sir Tom flanked by Into the Ark.

Monday, May 28, 2018

dredging up a smile from the past

Way, way, way back in the day, I had a Velveteen Rabbit plush. Loved that little guy...his pudgy little body, his little rabbit mouth. He was full of personality and joy, and he even had his own dance routine (to "Video Killed the Radio Star", his favorite song).

He rocked it.

This is Velveteen the Second.



I found him on Etsy a few weeks ago and had to snatch him up. Fifteen bucks, my friends...rarely does nostalgia come so cheap. And you'd better believe that the first thing I did after unpacking him was to download a copy of "Video Killed the Radio Star" and see if I remembered his dance.

Yup, I remembered.

I rocked it. 😁

Thursday, May 17, 2018

another goodbye

Goodbye, Aunt Monie...you were one of the good ones. Sending love and hugs and tears to my family...

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

helplessness

More rough times for the Saylor clan: My aunt Monie is very, very ill. It's very much a wait-and-see, time will tell situation, and the helplessness is hard for everyone. I'm stuck on the other side of the country, but I'm lucky to have some amazing family who are keeping me up-to-date on how she's doing...daily calls and texts and messages back and forth.

It sucks to see someone you love hurting. I love my Antimony, she's a friend as well as family...a rare thing.

Hugs and all my love to everyone...

music and memories

Got a random reminder the other day of how intertwined music and memory can be...it's amazing the power a song can have, even if you only hear a snippet.

Backstory: Many years back, my long-time partner developed feelings for a co-worker (spoiler: It led to the end of the relationship and was a very dark time for me, though the passing of time (and a lot of introspection and effort) would eventually lead to a better path and a better Stacey).

Back then, there was an older song that played a lot on the radio for some reason (maybe it was on a soundtrack?), whose title was the name of that co-worker. Plus (extra bonus!) the theme of the song was that the singer was smitten with the titular person, could see them being together, that things they thought were wrong in the past could be right in the future. You know, the kinds of lyrics someone going through a tough breakup loves to hear...Hollywood couldn't have written it better. <eyeroll>

Fast forward many, many years down the road. I'm a different person now. After coming through the other side, the lessons learned from that time in my life still serve me well...not the way I recommend learning about yourself, but if it has to happen, you might as well face it head on. So yeah, there I was umpteen years later, sitting at lunch, in circumstances that I couldn't have imagined in a million years, and I catch a bit of the song playing quietly over the speakers.

It was weird. It didn't hurt. It didn't bring back the emotions. It just tweaked me a bit...like tugging on a loose thread at your cuff and feeling it pull further up your sleeve. Connections, vague outlines of memories, a diaphanous blob of long-forgotten feelings.

It definitely didn't hit as hard as it did back when it was all fresh. In fact, it had no true effect, but I found the *memory* of the feelings to be fascinating. It was kind of like looking at a picture of a flower: You see the picture, you can match it to a memory of a real-life flower that you've seen, and you might have a recollection of what it should smell like, but it's removed from reality. You get a kind of "huh, yeah, I remember that flower" blip in your head, then you move on to the next thing. It was interesting to see that the cross-references were still there in my brain, but that they had dulled and diluted and no longer had power.


(There were two songs back then that made everything way, way too real at the time: the one with the co-worker's name, and one that had the singer cursing another for making them fall in love with them.

That one sucked. It was playing one time when I was hanging out with the co-worker (they had been a friend, a close one, actually) and they started crying on my shoulder about the song. So I comforted them, thinking it was about their own dying relationship. Yeah, no...turned out they were crying because it was *my* partner they were thinking of, and their relationship was failing because (and I kid you not, they said this to me) they "wanted a person like <my partner>" (another spoiler: They actually wanted my partner). So yeah, I wasn't fond of those songs, lol.)


(Oh, and don't get the idea that I blame the co-worker for what happened. While no, it's not terribly cool to pursue someone in a relationship, the weight of the choices fell on my ex-partner. They made the commitment to me, they were the one in the relationship. And if that relationship was no longer what they wanted, then it was on them to end it with honesty and integrity, with respect for everyone involved. Not going to lie, though, it would have been easier if I *could* have blamed someone else...I guess that's why so many people do.)

Saturday, May 05, 2018

an up and a down

The up - Will landed at California airport number 100 and did it big: he made SFO (San Francisco International) his 100th airport.

It was a very cool experience being in a teeny tiny Cessna that is landing on a gigantically huge runway (seriously, the runway is 200 feet wide and more than two miles long). It's so long that we were told to land halfway down, past the other runways crossing perpendicular to it, and even then we still had more than a mile of runway to play with. It was crazy and awesome and an incredible day.

The down - Bad news for a loved one.

One of my closest friends, someone I've known for more than twenty years now, found out that their cancer isn't as gone as they had hoped. They were originally diagnosed four years ago, went through chemo and surgery and painful recovery, and now they are facing it all over again. Fuck cancer, and fuck a universe that lets bad things happen to good people. Grr. Sigh. Sadness. Frustration. Helplessness.

Lots of other things going on: Still dealing with the nerve damage and the pain. A trip to Tennessee to prep for another addition to the family. Another trip to Minnesota coming up in a few months, and a much longer one to/from Tennessee a while after that (that trip is going to change things for the Lawton clan big time). Futzing around in WoW, which is interesting after nearly a decade playing Everquest 2. Big deck repair to come, currently in the planning stages (ye gods, it's overwhelming and pricey being an adult). Did I mention the nerve damage? Still trying to figure out how to deal with the day-to-day and the repercussions of that particular gift from the universe, especially with so many trips and plans and things that need doing.

To spout a few trite, tired, overdone sayings: It is what it is. One foot in front of the other. Keep on keepin' on. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Time will tell. Yadda yadda, bullshit bullshit, blah blah blah. <grin>

Sunday, March 04, 2018

we all float on

Something I've always wanted to do...and I'd do it again in a heartbeat.



(And now this song is stuck in my head.)

Thursday, November 30, 2017

stuff

Catching up (one of these months I'll actually make posts closer to the event):

Caught a mid-day showing of "Coco". Another Pixar win, a sweet story that flowed well. There were tears, but good ones...it was a well-told tale.

Saw Fall Out Boy at Oracle Arena. Awesome show, lots of fun. Weirdly, Jaden Smith was one of the opening acts...he's an odd bird, poor thing didn't inherit any of his dad's swagger. The other act was Blackbear, definitely a crowd favorite. We had awesome seats in the first ten rows, right up against the stage extension/walkway in the middle of the arena. Got to see them up close and personal. <grin>

Strained my ankle chasing after Darwin, but luckily it wasn't too bad. It has settled down into the "achy/weak/gives out when you least expect it" stage, so just have to baby it a bit and all will be fine. It's not the ankle that has been broken twice, which is weird...my body doesn't know what to do with a limp on the other side. :^D

Another concert, Imagine Dragons, one of the best I've been to in a long time. It was a very percussive, very *joyful* show...all ages, all types were there, and everyone was just having a good time. Lots of singing along, clapping, dancing; the band radiated a contagious energy and played well to the crowd. Halfway through the show they walked through the crowd and played on a small stage that appeared just below the lawn seats, which was an awesome thing...it meant even the "cheap seats" got a good view. I would see them again in a heartbeat.

Will headed out to Dead Cow Lake and the 2017 High Sierra Fly-in (though he drove this year). They got hit by a monster storm with winds gusting to 60-90+ miles per hour...planes came unmoored, one tumbled and was demolished, people's tents collapsed and broke. Our new Qube tent made it through with no issues, which was awesome (I have a feeling Qube may have made some sales in the weeks following).

Lots of flying with Will. A fun dinner with friends at Fenton's Creamery, a trip to Dead Cow lake to see the geyser and where he camped for that week.

Saw Puddles Pity Party with Karen, Riddle, and Feng (Bob couldn't make it, so I was able to take his ticket). It was a totally surreal show...and a hilarious one. I had no idea what to expect, and even now I can't really describe it. If you get the chance to see him live, do so. It's bizarre and incredible.

Finally got the heating/cooling working. Took four attempts, two new control boards, and a new blower motor. Even the tech was befuddled by it all, but at least it's working now (knock on wood).

No change in the neuralgia situation. Tired of even writing about it, honestly (though more tired of living with it). New insurance kicks in after the first of the year (old one stopped offering individual coverage in California, thanks in large part to the current political climate and the uncertainty around healthcare and subsidies and the like), so with luck I'll be able to finally work with them and find a pain specialist.

I'm sure there is more, but that's a good list for now. Life keeps moving on, things keep cranking along...

Friday, November 24, 2017

thankful

I am thankful for those who practice empathy and respect. I am thankful for the helpers, the supporters, the ones who cheer you on.

I am thankful for those who give parts of themselves, with little expectation of reciprocation.

I am thankful for those who see the evil and pain in the world, and still look for the good.

I am thankful for those who feed their curiosity, who never stop trying to learn about the world outside of their own boundaries.

I am thankful for those who find joy in the moments.

And most of all, I am thankful to find myself surrounded by these people, who provide an example every day of what I would strive to be.