Out With The Old

Haven’t been sleeping great… a couple hours here, a couple hours there, but I did manage to wake up at a normal time today and get some of my errands done. Not sure if my attorney will be calling tomorrow or not, but at least all of that stuff is in motion and more work will be done on it soon. Was gonna stop in and see Dad on my way home, but it was a little too warm today for a visit outside, so hopefully we’ll find a cooler, nicer day sometime this week. I’m actually looking forward to when we can take a ride up to Millersport to check out all the old haunts. But yeah, over 90 degrees is not anyone’s idea of a good time for sittin’ out talking.

So I headed home and decided to go ahead and start the process of setting up my new phone. I got a normal iPhone 11… the new SE is just too small, plus I wanted to get something decent at a decent price instead of being tempted by the iPhone 12 Pro Max with it’s LIDAR camera setup. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ๐Ÿ˜ƒ Want? Yes. Need? No. ๐Ÿ˜ I barely leave the house these days, let alone do anything that resembles photography, so no sense in blowing money on a fancy camera phone that I’d probably only use to scan dumb shit around my house. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜’

But I think I’m gonna be happy with this phone. It’s basically like my old one, just with a bigger screen, better dual cameras, faster everything… and even though I could have just had the battery replaced on my old one, they’re only gonna update iOS on those old models for so long. With this one I’ll be set for another four years or so. The more that I think about it, I actually did pretty good in keeping the old one as long as I did. ๐Ÿ™‚

But that’s when the afternoon turned tedious. The race got rained out… or at least it got rained on for long enough that I forgot to even check back in to see if they got going… but part of that was because I was dealing with customer support from Boost for the better part of two hours. ๐Ÿ˜ฃ The phones themselvesthey knew what was up… the new phone asked for the old phone to be placed next to it, then the old phone started sending over all my apps and data – so the new phone looks almost exactly the same as the old one. That process went fine… but the new phone still wasn’t working as a phone.

I tried to use the portal on their site to “swap phones” as they put it… and, at least on the dashboard, it looked like it worked. Had the exact model number, serial number, etc… even a picture of the phone… but calls no longer worked on either phone. ๐Ÿ˜’ After chatting with three different support techs, the last one finally realized that the previous two were entering the wrong sim card information into the system… something that he handled in about three minutes. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜‘ You know how you get when something is supposed to just work, but then you spend hours effing with it? Yeah… it was one of those evenings.

But it’s all good now. There’s still gonna be lots of little “this and that” that I’ll need to do to make it just like the old phone, but it’s more the fun type of fiddling. I’ve already got all 1600+ of my “liked” songs on Spotify downloaded for offline play, and tomorrow I’ll get to carefully attempt to put the tempered glass screen protector on and get it seated in its case so I don’t feel like I’m gonna snap it in half every time I handle it. ๐Ÿ˜ Meh… I’m just rambling now since it got me all wound up… I’m happy. New phone, new stuff to play with, so I’ve got nothing to complain about. Just wish I felt even a little bit sleepy… ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

Oh, and I’m finally catching up with Dad… heh… he’s been using online ordering for a couple months now when it comes to grocery shopping. And tonight I finally finished setting up my own account so I can avoid all the dirty asses in the grocery store as well. ๐Ÿ˜… Will probably place my first order tomorrow. ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

I’m Ready

It’s approaching midnight on Friday, and I think that I’m finally ready to face this week. So, these next couple of hours better watch out, because I’m not feeling too bad at the moment. ๐Ÿ˜ Heh… but seriously, this week has felt more “challenging” than usual. Although, as I’m sitting here trying to explain why, I can’t even really think of anything specific that should have made it feel that way. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ I dunno… I think all the “get ready, we’re opening” talk / news has just made my brain tired and my sleep shitty, which made every other small or “normal” thing feel that much more laborious. (I still got some chores done and got out of the house once or twice.)

But I’m not gonna sit here and try to remember all of the things from the past week that made it suck, ‘cuz I might end up damaging my calm. But yeah, this week… it definitely took me the entire week to be ready for whatever comes – and for the most part, nothing came. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ So now that the weekend is here I’m much more prepared for it than I was the current week. ๐Ÿค“ Hopefully that makes sense.

Ahh, I do know one thing that has improved my mood over the week… getting my two cats to tolerate each other. ๐Ÿ˜ Yeah, I’ve officially adopted Maggie – a cat that I was formerly just babysitting – so it’s been a week of anxiously hoping that her and Maven didn’t feel the need to murder each other. ๐Ÿ˜พ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป๐Ÿ˜พ Thankfully, possibly because they’re both too old to be bothered with such things, they don’t seem to have any desire to fight or be a pain in each other’s asses. (Although Maven does grump at her every now and then.)

They’re not even close to being buddy buddy, but they at least tolerate each other. In fact, I think they both actually like that there’s one “other critter” around, even if they don’t necessarily want to interact with that other critter. ๐Ÿ˜ I have a short video of them simply sitting upright next to each other, no more than a foot apart, but neither one of them wanting to look at or acknowledge the other… ๐Ÿ˜ … but both of them seeming to enjoy the moment in some way. (Purposely “ignoring” each other while making sure the other noticed.)

It would be too much to explain here in the blog, how I ended up with Maggie, but basically I was watching her while her previous owner was moving – but with things not going as planned there, the environment wouldn’t have been great for a kitty who’s already anxious and nervous all of the time. ๐Ÿ˜ณ๐Ÿ˜ฌ On her first day upstairs she went around the house looking for her former roommates, but once she realized they weren’t here – it’s almost like she felt relieved, because she started actually acting like a cat again rather than just hiding all the time and trying to avoid anything and anyone. ๐Ÿฅบ๐Ÿ˜Š

Maven and I lead a pretty tame life here in the house, and that’s exactly the kind of life that Maggie needs right now… so it just made sense for me to adopt her officially. It all depended on Maven being okay with it though, and since she hasn’t really done anything to indicate that she objects – it looks like this is a done deal. ๐Ÿ™‚ See, just typing about the situation has made me smile… so hopefully I’ll hang on to that feeling through the weekend too. (As long as these two buttholes continue to play nice.)

Too Late, Too Early

I stayed up until around 2am last night. Mostly just because I couldn’t fall asleep, but also because I wanted to step outside and see how many meteors I could see from the Lyrids meteor shower. ๐Ÿค“ I stood outside for a little over ten minutes, freezing, and saw a grand total of none. ๐Ÿ˜… I know that I was looking where I was supposed to, so they were either lighter than expected or I was just blinking at the wrong time. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

No big deal, since if I had seen several of them I probably would have been wishing I had figured out the needed settings for my cameras so that I could have captured them. ๐Ÿ˜’ But earlier in the evening I did mess with the phone and camcorder a bit, to see if I could quickly figure out how to get a noise-free, well exposed photo of the stars in the sky, while also being able to capture any shooting stars… and it’s not as easy as you’d think, at least not with an iPhone.

It’s funny, I’ve got it down where I can get a decent exposure of the night sky, but I know from trying to also capture a few passing planes in the frame – that the way I was exposing the image requires the stars to “stay put” for about 30 seconds, and any moving source of light just wouldn’t be captured. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜ Meh… I’m fairly confident with my regular star exposures, so if the sky is clear tonight I might plug up the phone to power and leave it out back to possibly get a decent time-lapse. On a full charge, using just the internal battery, I was only able to get one hundred 30 second exposures, forming this bitty 10 sec time-lapse… ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ™‚

(As usual, best viewed in HD, full screen… and this time, in a dark, dark room. I’m gettin’ there…)

So it was after 2a before I went to sleep, and then I woke up around 7a because my brain knew I had a doctor appointment at 9:30a – so it was sleeping lightly, waiting for any excuse to make sure that I’d wake up and not sleep through it. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜ Obviously I’ve had early doctor appointments before, but this one was different, so I’m certainly not complaining that I had to wake up early for it today.

This was my first experience with “telemedicine” as I guess it’s called. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ Staci called a little early, at 9a, to see if I was awake and able to go ahead and start… and she then sent a link via text, I clicked on it, it opened a page that started the AV connection as fast as a regular Facetime call would start, and from that point on it was like a regular doctor appointment. ๐Ÿค“๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€โš•๏ธ

She did her normal “pre-doc” stuff of all the typical information that they gather before the doctor actually comes in, she then put me on hold for about 30 seconds, and then my doctor clicked back in and we wrapped up my appointment in less than ten minutes. ๐Ÿ˜Š Still covered everything that we would have covered in person, and in fact – because I didn’t have to experience the anxiety of the in-person visit, I probably felt better than at a “normal” appointment. That also meant that I didn’t ramble on about any minor “this or that” which often happens when I’m actually there and able to bitch. ๐Ÿ˜…

So yeah, I could definitely get spoiled by something like that. ๐Ÿค— I realize though that a doctor does have to be able to physically interact with a damaged person at least every couple of appointments (to confirm the level of their damage) but it would be nice if I could do two of these, then a regular appointment, two more of these, then a regular, etc. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ˜• Unfortunately they probably aren’t able to bill insurance at the same rate when they do “virtual” vs “real” appointments, so once they feel that the COVID risk isn’t as high anymore, everyone will be going back to the regular routine. ๐Ÿ˜’

Heh… this is probably my longest, most coherent pre-10a entry I’ve ever written. ๐Ÿ˜‹

Get A Hobby

Bad dreams ended up waking me last night around 3am, and I’ve been up ever since. Kinda doesn’t matter what sleep schedule I keep these days, given that I’m not going anywhere and I didn’t even realize what day it was today. Not meaning April Fools Day, just meaning that I didn’t realize it was Wednesday. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ˜ Point being, anxiety filled sleep, waking up early… it didn’t lead to much of a day for me. I did text with Dad and Genesee a bit, and she got me thinking about playing the keyboard again. ๐Ÿค”๐ŸŽน๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

I forget what she said, but it reminded me that thanks to the YouTube Music app searching my own videos for music to add… I ran across this old video of me playing Don’t Wake Me by Skillet. ๐Ÿ˜Ž And when I did, I realized that if you put that keyboard in front of me now I’d have no idea how to play it. Elton John made a comment on his Melbourne Symphony album, that he was playing some songs that were so old that he had to re-learn them as well for that concert. ๐Ÿ™‚ So that’s one thing I’m gonna try to make time for… “keyboard dickin’ around time” every now and then.

And then thanks to NASCAR and iRacing running these virtual races on the weekend… and apparently a dirt track / winged-car race tonight… that’s got my mind back on video games. ๐Ÿค“๐ŸŽฎ๐Ÿ“บ I’ve got an XBOX One and a Playstation 4, yet it’s probably been at least six months since I’ve even turned either of them on. ๐Ÿ˜• Once I got into a funk a while back, my brain just never seemed interested in reminding me that I’ve got kewl shit that I could play. So I’m gonna go through my games tonight and figure out which system I’ve got the best racing games for, and I’ll probably try to re-familiarize myself with all that. ๐Ÿค” I used to be good. Years ago I was really layin’ ’em down at the road courses, or at least it felt that way. (Wow, that was from 2013…)

I don’t wanna get ahead of myself, since I’ve already got a couple options there, but I’m probably gonna play around with time-lapse and long-exposure phone photography like I usually do each spring… plus I’ve got a couple new photogrammetry apps for creating 3D models from a series of regular digital photos, so that might keep my attention as well. Meh… we’ll see, I guess.

Don’t mind me… just doing a little more “talking out loud” to hopefully burn these ideas into my brain a little more effectively. ๐Ÿคฏ It’s not like I’m making valuable use of my time otherwise, so I might as well be doing something that I used to consider fun, eh? ๐Ÿ˜ All this time stuck in the house might help me figure out where “old me” went. ๐Ÿ™‚๐Ÿคž๐Ÿป

Just Like New

I think I can break self-isolation for this, and people (if they knew) wouldn’t scold me too much. ๐Ÿค”

I’ve had an iPhone 7 Plus for several years now, and she’s finally starting to show her age, battery-wise. And with the new iPhone 9s or SE2s coming out soon, I don’t really want to be tempted by a brand new (albeit “budget”) iPhone when I’ve got one that works just fine for almost everything that I might need it for. ๐Ÿคจ So getting a new battery for my current phone is the best way to squash all of that.

Another thing that’s getting close to needing a new battery is the car. Even though it hasn’t been cold this winter, it’s still turning over with a little more struggle than I’d like. Not struggle struggle, but basically you can tell it’s not new anymore. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ It’s about four years old now, original factory battery, so I don’t know if this is an “expected” time-frame where it would be due or not… but I’ll have the battery d00d test it first and see what he says as well. (Although common and business sense may guide his opinion in an obvious direction. ๐Ÿ˜)

The battery store where I picked up a couple of scooter batteries a few months back… really nice guy running the shop, and he was working on a phone as I was checking out and didn’t seem nervous about it. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ So I could get the phone taken care of, the car taken care of, and believe it or not – they even offer windshield wiper blades… which is another thing that I haven’t changed since getting this car years ago. ๐Ÿ˜

Everything looks competitively priced, and all of it has free installation… cuz lord knows I can’t even come close to chucking car batteries around on my own, and wiper blades can be a surprising pain in the ass if you don’t pay attention how you take the old ones off… heh… at least for me. ๐Ÿค“ So anyway, I might end up stopping by that store whenever I have to go out anyway to pick up my meds, so hopefully I’ll also be able to get some of these little concerns taken care of while I’m at it. ๐Ÿ˜Ž Total human contact = 1 person. ๐Ÿ˜ท

Drip

Did some loads of laundry yesterday, and upon finishing up the last load I looked over and saw a big puddle forming around the water heater. It’s old… like, old old, so I knew that it would need to be replaced sooner than later – even talked with a friend about doing it earlier this year – but it looks like it has forced my hand.

I’ve been careful not to use any hot water today, and the puddle hasn’t gotten any bigger, so I’m not going to say that I’m not worried about it… but I’m hoping that it’ll be okay until a plumber can get here – on non “emergency” rates. The joys of being a homeowner.

I only got a couple hours of sleep last night, mentally grumping and being concerned about it, so hopefully I’ll fall asleep early and sleep until dawn tonight. I folded / hung all the laundry and put it away today, along with cleaning the living room and running the vacuum cleaner to remove the slight coating of white kitty hair that has been accumulating. That sounds much more gross than what it was.

No energy to talk about the stock market free-fall, the President, the coronavirus, oil prices tanking, 16M people quarantined in Italy, etc… but man is the world starting to seem like a scary place, eh?

Refresh

My neck and shoulder are finally calmed down (mostly) after a long “recovery” day, so I think I better go ahead and make a “good” entry tonight in case my mood changes and I’m not feelin’ it tomorrow. ๐Ÿ˜

Over the past month or so I’ve ordered three different cosmetic upgrades for my car. The first one was an OEM-looking spoiler, already painted in “Magnetic Metallic” with clear coat, so it is ready to install straight out of the box. ๐Ÿ™‚ It was about $100 and came from California, I believe.

The second one was a gloss black splitter / lip (or whatever you wanna call it) for the bottom of the front bumper. Now, this one came from whatever Asian area that all cheap reproduction goods seem to come from these days, so not only did it take a while to get here – but it arrived without the 3M adhesive tape and the screws to attach it to the car, so I’ll have to pick those up elsewhere. ๐Ÿ˜’ No big deal, since it was around $30.

Those two things… I had watched a few YouTube videos and convinced myself that I’d be able to do them myself, albeit with the help of a friend with tools and two functioning arms. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ The spoiler and splitter both require only minimal prep and effort compared to the third thing.

Also right around $100, a few days ago I ordered a gloss black honeycomb grill similar to what you’d see on the Fusion Sport, Mustang, and a bunch of other cars these days. My Fusion is a 2016 SE, so it came with the straight line “chrome” plastic grill… and while it obviously doesn’t look bad, I just think it’ll look better with this new one. (Plus I can sell the old one.) But this upgrade, there’s no way I’d be able to do it on my own, since it requires removing the nose of the car in order to pop out the old grill and snap the new one in. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ

It hasn’t arrived yet, but it shouldn’t be too much longer since it’s also coming from CA. But when I made the decision to pull the trigger on the grill, that’s when I also resigned myself to the idea that it would be better to let someone else install all this crap in one shot. ๐Ÿ˜ Especially since the splitter will go on much more easily when the nose is already off the car for the grill swap.

I know a few people who work on cars for a living, including a couple who do restorations and body work, so at some point I’ll probably hit one of them up and see if they’d be willing to handle my little project. Just because I think I could install the spoiler and splitter… it doesn’t mean that I should. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ๐Ÿ˜ž There’s no doubt that it would take me 10x longer than anyone else, plus it would almost certainly tweak my neck and shoulder in some way. ๐Ÿ˜’ This is no time for my proud-but-stupid “I don’t need help” side to be stubborn.

But yeah, I’m looking forward to seeing how she’ll look with her new gear. ๐Ÿ™‚

Weekend Work

Quite a bit of mail arrived over Thursday and Friday. ๐Ÿ˜ณ Enough that I don’t wanna let it wait until next week before I start getting to it. (Mostly because the piece on top of the stack was the IC hearing info, so there’s probably attorney crap as well.) It’s sitting on my couch, soon to be joined by today’s mail, because I don’t wanna look through it all (yet) and stress myself out over the weekend.

I also got a couple calls from unfamiliar numbers yesterday, and they left voice mail, so I’ll tackle that along with the mail tomorrow. Gonna try to keep today good. I just have little reason to believe that those messages will be anything that I wanna hear. ๐Ÿ˜’ Probably something from one of my doctors, one of my attorneys, or it could be in regards to the recent request for a new MRI scan of my neck. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

I suppose it’s never “good” if you’re getting an MRI scan, and the process on its own is horrible. But given that a past scan to check my neck injury also revealed my thyroid defect, not only might it reveal that my cervical spine fusion area has gotten worse, but who knows what unrelated concerns it might also reveal. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ Bleh. ๐Ÿ˜ž Hopefully that makes my anxiety re: answering calls / checking voice mail somewhat understandable.

Heh… I’m just shit when it comes to getting older and / or experiencing damage. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ Of course it wasn’t like I thought that I’d be young and invincible forever, so I don’t know why my brain is so reluctant to finally accept my various injuries and ailments. ๐Ÿค” It doesn’t help that WC has fought me every step of the way when it comes to anything meant to at least make me feel as good as possible given the situation.

I know… you’ve heard all of this before. ๐Ÿ™„ This blog sure isn’t what it once was, eh?. ๐Ÿ˜ I’ve gotta do less grumping and post more “random” type stuff, along with more entries about the (increasingly rare) “fun shit” that I might get into. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿคจ Guess that means I’ll have to do more of that shit, eh? I have felt better than average this week, so maybe if things continue like this… with spring coming up, perhaps I really will find a way to get out among the humans more often and get my mind off of the negatives. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

The opposing side in my WC case has already used bogus “Look! He’s doing stuff!” types of accusations, so I’ll have to find a way to get past that concern. ๐Ÿ˜• The thing is, if they weren’t accusing me of doing too much, they’d be accusing me of not doing enough, not trying to get better… so, basically, I’m the “bad guy” no matter what I do. ๐Ÿ™„ I may as well try to put a little more “living” in my life, no?

But yeah, new plan: I have to post one good/random thing for each “bleh” thing that I post. ๐Ÿ˜ Hold me to it.