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.

Pre-Dawn Thought-Stream

Got notice yesterday that my IC hearing has finally been rescheduled. ๐Ÿ˜’ It’s gonna fall right in the middle between my most recent WC doctor appointment and the one scheduled for next month. I’ve gotta get two of my WC meds filled later today (I’m not gonna rehash how that normally goes) but with the hearing now on the schedule again, I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s even more trouble.

The past few months I’ve had to pay out-of-pocket to be able to get my meds on schedule, and then just wait and hope that the WC insurer would pay me back. ๐Ÿ˜ I feel bad for the folks who are in the same situation as me but aren’t able to do that. And all this crap each month… that’s despite nearly every previous IC hearing over the past decade being found in my favor. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ˜’ (Making “winning” somewhat of an inaccurate term.)

That’s the thing, you can “win” over and over again, but they can come at you again for those same things, repeatedly, after a certain amount of time elapses. It’s literally a never-ending process, if they want it to be. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ No emotional investment from their side, but it can sure wear down the injured worker. I know I don’t mean this, but I’m almost “ready to lose” just to be done with it. Can’t quit now though…

Jim and Adam are coming to town this evening, and they’re gonna pick up Brad so we can all meet up for dinner somewhere. ๐Ÿ™‚ Jim lives so far away now, in the past few years I’ve only seen him probably a couple times each year, so (especially since he’s coming all the way down here) I’m really hoping that I can make it. Doesn’t help that I fell asleep early yesterday and have therefore been awake since 3a today. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜

It’s after 5a now, it doesn’t appear that I’ll be falling back to sleep, so that means I’ll likely need a nap sometime in the early afternoon. ๐Ÿ˜ด Heh… being old and broken sure has a way of changing how you plan for things and recover from them afterwards. ๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿฆณ Thankfully this has been an okay week re: my neck, so with any luck that will remain true tonight. (Unlike the 2018 Sweet Corn Festival when we all met up… ๐Ÿ˜ณ)

I was an absolute mess that day. ๐Ÿฅบ Dealing not just with my neck, shoulder, and some horrible random lower back pain – but also, being right before my thyroid cancer surgery, I had like 1/10th of the energy that I’d normally have when it came to getting around the place. I could tell by how they acted that I must have appeared like I was on Death’s door. ๐Ÿค•๐Ÿ˜ท๐Ÿ˜‘โ˜ ๏ธ So, while things aren’t perfect now by any means, they’re at least better than that, eh? So I don’t wanna miss it tonight. Gotta make the moments count.

Aging / Adjusting / Accepting

Oy… mah knees. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜ Might end up hiding my phone today. So far it doesn’t seem like I did anything to bother my neck / shoulder yesterday, but instead it was all of the walking that got me. ๐Ÿ˜ Yeah. Walking. ๐Ÿ˜’

Even though I started off the day with no complaints, I knew that all of the trips up and down the stairs would probably end up getting me by today. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ Now, our parents, our grandparents, the “elder generation” so to speak… they all went from “young and invincible” to getting older and slowly falling apart, but you’d rarely hear any of them complain about it. ๐Ÿค” Well, I haven’t achieved the “no bitching” part yet, but at least I can usually see it coming now… whether it’s my neck, shoulder, knees, whatever.

And I suppose it only really bothers me when I think about it in relation to certain other things. Like, with Gen and Sarah being on vacation right now, the topic of Atlantic City has come up in conversation with her and with Dad… ๐Ÿ˜Œ and back in the day, I could have walked the entire length of the boardwalk a couple times each day if I wanted to. ๐Ÿ˜ Now I’d have to show up with a plan. ๐Ÿ˜…

I suppose that’s what it comes down to. Yeah, complaining a bit, but mostly just making adjustments so you can still do the majority of the stuff you used to do, or the stuff you want to do now, but not being so stubborn to think that you can do it without caution or without help. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ Boardwalk? Take a jitney, tackle a “chunk” each day, and take a jitney back to the hotel. ๐Ÿ˜Ž๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐ŸšŒ And even if you feel fine, you’ve gotta subconsciously remember that that shit’s still there waiting to say “Hi” if you fuck up.

I also have to keep in mind that I haven’t had any joint replacements, haven’t had any surgeries in those areas, so there’s always a chance that I’ll be able to have something done eventually that will help. ๐Ÿ™‚๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ But poor Cassi. I’m sure she’s got aches and pains today from everything that she did yesterday, but unlike me – she’s not gonna be able to take the day off to recover. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ Or tomorrow. ๐Ÿ˜ฃ Or probably the day after that.

Moving is a daunting task when you aren’t firing on all cylinders. ๐Ÿฅบ I’m lucky to have ended up living where I do, and I don’t take it for granted, but I have given thought to moving… and the “physical” aspect is what discourages me from it the most. So much stuff to move, with so little ability to do so. ๐Ÿ˜ง Hopefully Steven wrangled up enough help so that the girls won’t have to do most of the heavy lifting today.