Just Rambling

It ain’t over ’til it’s over… that should be the motto of my life when it comes to all of the workers comp garbage. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜ I think there’s an R&B song from the early 90s with something close to that title. ๐Ÿค” Meh… anyway… it’s been a day full of working on that stuff, reading mail, working on new forms as much as I can – without any of my attorneys being across the table to help me. ๐Ÿ˜ฌ But much like everything else that I’ve had to fight for, there’s still some fighting left to be done before the medical portion is gonna be settled.

It’s a bit before midnight now, so I’ve lost most of the emotional energy that was powering me through it all, so I don’t even have the oomph to really rant about any of it tonight. ๐Ÿ˜ I mean, things should be fine eventually… it’s just the typical “Surprise, this isn’t gonna go how you thought it was gonna go.” stuff that plagues every person in the system and keeps things progressing at a snail’s pace. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐ŸŒ But my attorney says we should remain optimistic, and he’s good at selling me on that idea… ๐Ÿ˜ so, that’s what I shall do.

But man, even today I’m feeling the effects of how the whole thing has changed me. It simply sucks the energy out of me when I have to work on stressful stuff and make phone calls regarding it all. ๐Ÿ˜’๐Ÿ˜ฃ I mean, that’s what started my “phone anxiety” back in the beginning of the process. All calls seemed to be doctors, lawyers, social security, etc… and all of them were stressful. ๐Ÿ˜  I hate using the word “trigger” but that’s what a ringing phone became to me, and then the same for picking up and trying to make a call. It’s embarrassing.

But just like back then, today I felt that effect… not in a super bad way, and I wasn’t even feeling overly stressed or upset or anything… but that still didn’t stop it from sucking away my energy and sending me into a couple unplanned naps. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ด Heh… they’re hard to describe. They usually start with, “Ugh, this sucks… I need to take 10 minutes to rest my eyes and brain.” and then I wake up a couple hours later. ๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿคฆ๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ Granted, my sleep has already been screwed up because of my neck and an awful 24 hour headache, but working on this shit didn’t help. ๐Ÿ˜› (And I doubt that I’d be anything like this if I hadn’t gotten hurt and stopped working… but meh, who knows, I could have ended up worse. Que sera, sera. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ™‚ )

But it was kind of nice to do this mid-week rather than waiting until the weekend like I usually do with most of the mail. I mean, there’s no getting around their business hours when it comes to needing to actually get in touch with folks at the office. But yeah… a big chunk of “bleh” was at least handled and pushed off to the side until probably the start of next week. ๐Ÿ˜Š A little bit of uncertainty is still gonna be creeping around in my thoughts until this is truly settled, but there’s nothin’ new about that.

Let’s Not Do That Again

I’ve been kinda sidelined today. Heh… that stretching trick that I mentioned yesterday? Yeah, probably not a great idea. I did actually sleep pretty good somehow, but when I woke up it felt like (and has continued to feel like) someone was driving a set of keys into my back right under my left scapula. ๐Ÿ˜ฃ Now, it may be a situation where if I continue to do stretches each day, it could become where the “after” result isn’t as tight and painful… but until I can talk to my doctor and let him know about all this, I think I’m just gonna let it be. ๐Ÿ˜ No sense in playing around with it, when I can just “accept” the normal pain and tightness that I’m familiar with and have managed to get by with. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ (Also, I’m not blaming my doctor… it was my idea to ask and try something new… only way to know…)

The way I look at it, even though this definitely shows that my condition is getting worse, at least it’s in a way that isn’t noticeable unless I really try to do something that changes how that shoulder feels or use it more than I know I should. And speaking of my condition, I haven’t even sorted out everything regarding all the paperwork I’ve already gotten… yet today I got another big envelope full of stuff along with a normal sized one for good measure. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜‘ Haven’t opened them up yet, ‘cuz I can’t really do anything with it all until I huddle with my attorneys.

It’s frustrating that they have to work from home, ‘cuz it’s not as easy as going to the conference room in the main office and sitting down to look at everything, to make sure we’ve both gotten all the same stuff, and then figuring out what they need to do / what I need to do. ๐Ÿ˜ณ๐Ÿ—ƒ๏ธ๐Ÿ—ƒ๏ธ๐Ÿ—ƒ๏ธ๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ผ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ป I’m not anxious to do much of it by e-mail either, since it’s not secure… so I’ll have to check their site and see if they have a portal for submitting documents if there’s anything that they need to see but haven’t gotten yet. ๐Ÿ˜’ But of course when I’ve got the mental and emotional energy to deal with the stuff, something else is effing it up. It’s fine though, I’m gonna make sure that it starts to get addressed tomorrow. Not gonna let this be heavy on my mind over the weekend… ๐Ÿ˜ 

Don’t mind me… just a little grumpy today due to feeling like ass when I woke up, not really getting much better throughout the day, more shitty mail coming that I can’t immediately do anything about, and then not knowing exactly how I will get a pow-wow with the attorneys to get shit taken care of. ๐Ÿ˜  I hope the whole system is aware that there’s gonna be some delays in things due to the current COVID situation. ‘Cuz it would sure be like the legal / WC system to find some shitty little loophole to somehow kick me out just because some of the documentation is moving slowly. ๐Ÿ˜’

Okay… deep breath… gonna try to make this evening less sucky. Wish me luck.

Prepare to Launch

Surprisingly, all of that mail that I was dreading… it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. ๐Ÿคจ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ I can’t say yet if any of it is actually good, but the information that came in over the past week or so was of a type that at least keeps me optimistic and motivated, and that’s something that I really need in order to keep fighting the never-ending WC game. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ Like I told Dad, even if a lot of it ends up falling through, at least it’s helping to keep me going right now.

My attorneys are still working from home for the most part, so I don’t think all of this information has trickled out to the ones that need it yet. ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜’ So tomorrow I’ll be calling in again to see if I can find someone to talk to before my doctor appointment and possible stop by the Social Security office. ๐Ÿ˜ž With all of this stuff going on, of course SS is gonna perk its ears up and wanna know what’s going on (Like a cat that hears the cat food bag crinkle, or a dog that hears when his squeak toy get stepped on… ๐Ÿ˜) so I just wanna make sure they’ve got all of the information they need as well.

And ironically, my neck has been extra janky today, so I’m hoping that my condition doesn’t improve before my appointment tomorrow. ๐Ÿคจ It doesn’t usually work out where my “worst moments” coincide with the time and date of my appointments, but it’s nice when the doctor can actually see the true extent of the suck. I think it’s because I was folding so much laundry over the past couple days, along with several other small chores that I forced myself to do while the energy was there. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ Meh.

Oh, and regarding my attorneys… there’s a good chance that I am gonna have to go to the main office to either give them copies of what I’ve gotten, or perhaps start signing some different things if they did get these same papers and have already begun working on them. ๐Ÿ‘จ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ผ๐Ÿ‘ฉ๐Ÿปโ€๐Ÿ’ผ๐Ÿค“ But their office is located downtown, and that hasn’t been the most car-friendly area over the past couple of weeks. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ I’ll have to check the different news sites tonight and see what they say about protests / areas, and maybe start looking for a “back way” into the nearby parking garage so I can sneak in and out if needed.

I’m not looking forward to tomorrow though. ๐Ÿ˜• Basically all of the things that are great at stealing my energy… that’s the stuff I’ll be doing all day. Visit with my doctor, impromptu SocSec office stop, phone calls with my attorneys (w/possible trip up to Columbus), stopping by my insurance agent’s office for some things, etc. ๐Ÿ˜ But it’s my choice to glom all of this shit together this time, because I’d rather do it, have it hurt and/or drain me, but then have it all (hopefully) out of the way for a little while.

Calling it a day early though. ๐Ÿ˜ด Gonna go dark, find a movie to watch, and hopefully sack out soon. ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป

Different Distraction

I was a potato all morning, keeping the curtains closed, the doors shut, attempting to keep out as much of the bright daylight as possible. Just wasn’t ready to start the day. But once I did open up and got the cool breeze blowing through here, it gave me a little motivation to do something today. Already did the laundry, don’t really wanna just clean the kitchen or bathroom, so I think I’m gonna make this an “office” work day.

I recently moved Grandpa’s desk out to the living room so I’d have a “real” work space, along with making the desktop more practical to use… but all my little “mail holders / sorters” and misc paper trays have far too much crap in them. I couldn’t tell you off hand what it all is, since I take care of the bills as they come in – but yeah, I’ve got a buttload of papers that I can go through as I sit here and watch the race.

And when I say trays, I actually mean these nice metal / mesh things that I picked up at a thrift store a while back. So I’ve got trays, sorting things, a pen / pencil cup – and all of it matches nicely. So if I go through everything and get rid of all the crap, that’ll put me at a nice “starting point” as stuff starts to open up again. (Which probably means the workers comp situation will be coming back to life again as well.) I dunno, something about having everything tidy makes it easier to tackle whatever the next project may be.

And speaking of stuff being closed down for months… I’ve actually been doing some back and forth “mail stuff” with a certain company, trying to get some things taken care of, and I’ve been sitting here wondering what’s been causing the delay – since all of the paperwork has been completed and all of the needed documents sent in. I guess my brain was just assuming that it would be business as usual at a place like that, but now that I think about it – their offices are probably no different than any others, so I imagine that they’re either shut down or running with reduced staff just like everyone else.

Ugh… these commercials, man… more than half of them, during every effing commercial break, refer to the current situation in one way or another. Do any of those ads actually make anyone feel better? Are you relieved that the local burger joint is telling you that they’ve got your back? No. We watch TV to escape the thoughts of what’s going on outside our doors… and we sure don’t need to be reminded repeatedly during every damn commercial break. Heh… okay, time to be slightly productive… and sorry, I don’t really have the oomph to bother with text formatting or emojis… heh

Longest Ramble In A While…

I’m not gonna link to either of them, but yesterday evening when I was catching up on the news on Twitter, I came across two different things that really bothered me. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ Both of them were in Michigan, and both were part of a protest against the physical distancing / stay at home orders that have been put in place due to Michigan being one of the most affected states in regards to coronavirus / COVID-19.

I wanna start by saying that I do get why people are frustrated and want to be heard. ๐Ÿฅบ In fact, they’re more frustrated than I can even empathize with because they’ve been off work, losing their jobs, their businesses going under, and that’s obviously gonna take a toll on people. ๐Ÿ™ I know that I have days where it even gets to me more than I’d expect it to, so when people are unable to pay their bills, their rent, medical bills, etc.

But the first part of the protest that caught my eye were the hundreds of people who forced their way into one of the government buildings. I’m not sure if it was the state house, but it’s where the politicians were trying to do their jobs while protesters were shouting and screaming at law enforcement, banging on doors and walls, demanding that they bet let in. ๐Ÿ˜ณ I think most people would expect a protest like that eventually, but this one went further – because many of the protesters were also dressed up like militia and were carrying loaded semi-automatic rifles. ๐Ÿ˜ง

When you look at the video footage, I hate to say it, but those people looked and acted like you’d expect those kinds of folks to look and act… meaning, people who show up with guns when there’s no apparent reason to do so. ๐Ÿ˜’ And the ones who didn’t have guns, it’s not like they were discouraging the ones who did. Common sense says they brought their guns with them so they would be more intimidating, but I want to give them the benefit of the doubt. Maybe the only protests they’ve really paid attention to are ones regarding gun control issues, where it would sorta make sense to “bear arms” while protesting… and maybe that made them think that all protests require dozens of armed people. ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜ 

But yeah, you can look it up if you wanna see or read more about it. But with the way tensions were, I think they’re very lucky that there wasn’t even an accidental discharge of a weapon – which would have lit the very short fuse on that powder keg. It’s just sad, the smug look that you could see on some of their faces as they stood with their rifles, in the area above where the politicians worked. ๐Ÿ˜” And if their goal was truly to be heard, their stunt backfired… because all that people are talking about are the “white guys with guns” who occupied that building without so much as a ticket for ignoring social distancing rules, and questioning what may have happened if that group had been young black men instead. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

I don’t like doing those “what if” scenarios normally, but the way all those folks chose to act… ๐Ÿ˜’ oh, and because of something that I saw in the second topic that caught my eye. For another part of the protest there was a stage set up where people were speaking against the current rules, talking about the damage that it has done… understandable stuff. But then they had a performance by a couple of girls who looked as if they couldn’t have even been teenagers, wearing skimpy little dance outfits and halloween type masks. ๐Ÿค” One of them being of a black man with exaggerated features. (Looks like they could have been Trump & Obama masks.)

They were doing a dance routine to the old song “Candy Man” but it sounded as if the lyrics had been changed to comment on the current situation. That’s unfortunate enough, where children are essentially being used by their parents to make political statements… but as these little girls were dancing, you could hear men and women in the crowd hooting and hollering as if it were some kind of burlesque show – with people even shouting “TAKE IT OFF!” as these poor little kids did their routine. ๐Ÿ˜ง๐Ÿฅบ๐Ÿ˜”

It honestly made me sick to my stomach. ๐Ÿ˜Ÿ Not just because the kids were being used in that manner, or that gross people were shouting sexual things at them, but also because nobody else in the crowd said anything, stuck up for them, or did anything to show their disapproval. ๐Ÿคฆ๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ (At least not in the clips that I saw.) I understand that people can start “thinking as a group” when caught in a moment, but even when it comes to something as disgusting as that? It’s not a good look for whatever message you were trying to send. ๐Ÿ˜ 

If you’d ask a bunch of those first folks why they felt the need to bring rifles to a peaceful protest and dress in camo… the answers would probably be of the “bEcAUsE wE CAn!” variety. ๐Ÿ˜ But that display with the girls, I wonder if any protesters would try to defend or normalize that as well. It makes me feel bad for the “normal” citizens of Michigan, because it makes the state look pretty awful – and I know they’ve got to be angry and embarrassed by all of it, the way it makes their citizens look to the rest of the country. ๐Ÿ˜”๐Ÿคฆ๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ

One might ask why I allow myself get caught up in “news” like this. I ask that of myself too, honestly. ๐Ÿ˜ But I dunno… I do try to limit my exposure in general, since 99% of what gets reported seems to be negative, but I guess I just feel like everyone should try to keep up on the more important things – especially if they want to have an opinion and have conversations with others about any of it. ๐Ÿคจ So with things being as wacky as they’ve been over the past four years, even just “normal” news can trigger someone’s anxiety… and stumbling across “extra” stuff on Twitter, like the topics in this entry, is almost unavoidable. ๐Ÿ˜•

But I look back on old news articles and broadcasts from when Mom and Dad were young, and I see different protests, via different methods, at different locations, for different reasons… and I can’t remember learning about any of them and thinking, “Good grief… those people were idiots.” ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿคท๐Ÿปโ€โ™‚๏ธ I’m sure “dumb” protests did happen, so maybe the news was just less interested in covering sensationalism back then? ๐Ÿค” But hell… Today? I don’t think a day passes where I don’t read about or see something that makes me grumble, “Good grief, those people are idiots.” I think they were also lucky back then, getting their news (and only a couple hours each day) from either ABC, NBC, or CBS – and that was it. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ Not enough “room” to cover the stupids. Thanks to the internet though, we now have an endless supply that we have to work to avoid.

Proceed with Caution

If you’re anything like me, and you find yourself coming across these types of videos on YouTube, you might end up spending a couple hours staring silently and intently at the television… wondering where half of your day just went. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ๐Ÿ˜ƒ I never took “wood shop” in school, so other than dicking around in the workshop in the basement – I haven’t really even done the most basic of woodworking skillz. ๐Ÿ˜• So that first tool… to me, boy did it look like it would just “grab it” and sending it flinging into the air. (Kinda reminds me of the potential kickback from a table saw cutting knotty boards.) ๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ˜ฌ๐Ÿ˜ฃ A neat little creation though, from such an “ugly” lump of wood and a bunch of resin.

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

One Day at A Time

Fox Sports did a great job with the “virtual” race that they put on today. I forget what the official name was, but it was an eNASCAR / iRacing / Invitational / Exhibition race… that they somehow managed to get on TV with an impressive presentation. Sure, there were more wrecks than in a real race, and a few glitches here and there… but overall, if you were just walking in and out of the living room, only half paying attention, you wouldn’t have even noticed that we were all watching a video game.

A nice little escape for a couple of hours today. Back in reality, Mike DeWine declared that Ohio will have a stay-at-home order starting on Monday. We’re all basically doing that already, but I think this may actually affect folks who were still wanting and trying to work. Only certain jobs are on the approved list, so here’s hoping that the government comes through with unemployment or another form of relief quickly – ‘cuz as if the virus itself doesn’t cause enough anxiety, now people are gonna have to worry about utilities, rent, car payments, food, etc.

The problem is, the way they’ve worded things, the way they’re going to enforce this order… it’s way, way too soft – and the people who want to be out, or just don’t want to be told what to do, they’re gonna find and use all the loopholes. I’d give it a week or two before DeWine gets fed up with the lack of cooperation and puts something stronger in place. But right now, you can still go out to the park, walk around, walk your dog, drive to shop, visit family, go to doctor appointments… I mean, I don’t know what the right amount of “enforcement” would be, so maybe that’s why it’s starting off light.

I didn’t watch Trump’s press briefing today, and I’m probably a whole lot better for it. I’ve seen a couple clips, and have read things that he said or did… and yeah, as many, many people and journalists are starting to say on Twitter – there’s no reason that these things should be carried live, since there is so much misinformation that causes fear and anxiety. So my day was a bit better than I was feeling last night. Honestly, I don’t really know how I feel at the moment… it’s almost like anticipation… not knowing how I should feel until we start seeing things happening closer to home each day.

I’m probably still right on the edge of that same anxiety that I had last night, so after I get off of here I’m gonna seek out Airplane! (the movie) so I can kick back and absorb some stupid, clever, dumb comedy as I hopefully get sleepy. I hope everyone out there made it through the day as uneventfully as I did today.