Life Events: ER and COVID-19

Let me start with this: I am OK. Saturday morning I was ok. Got up, played with Remy. Did a bit of picking up to vacuum the living room. At 11 I took Remy upstairs to cuddle with daddy while I made a cup of tea and used my inhaler. I felt my asthma flaring up and I hadn’t even done any real cleaning yet! My husband came downstairs sometime after 11:30 and looked at me and said, “You look like you need to use the nebulizer.” I always argue this. I hate the nebulizer. I didn’t argue this time. I did need it. I could feel it. I hate it, but I know breathing is kind of important. I use the nebulizer, but I still feel like I just can’t get my breath. Every inhale hurts. I log into my health insurance site to get a teledoc. I don’t know what else to try. I’m #23 in line for

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Current Events: Coronovirus

I wasn’t going to add to the noise around this, but then the other day someone posted “ok everyone, this isn’t the bubonic plague.” The historian came out. So many ways I wanted to respond: Yes, please don’t kill cats. Rats are the ones most likely causing the spread of the plague. True. The bubonic plague had a mortality rate of almost 70%, even in the modern era it’s somewhere around 10% even with antibiotics, so 3.4% isn’t as bad! Well except that bubonic plague is a bacteria and antibotics are kind of amazing and COVID-19 is a virus. Hence the family “coronoVIRUS” As someone who doesn’t know whether I’m in the “80% will be fine” group or if my asthma will put me in the “20% vulnerable people” who will not be ok…. please take it seriously. You see, that last one is the truth. With my asthma, I don’t know. I am compromised because my lungs are not

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Writing: Auditory reading

Over Christmas time I re-listened to Going Postal and Making Money (Terry Pratchett). One of the reasons I love the audiobooks for Pratchett is his play on words. Pratchett doesn’t just use the English language. Pratchett abuses it in the best of ways, and his reader does a brilliant job capturing that. I also recently re-read Ready Player One and because I have listened to the audio book, there were parts I “heard” in Wil Wheaton’s voice. His tone, pronunciations, etc. I think a good reader does that, becomes the character’s voice and sticks with it. There are other books where the reader was not of such high importance. The only reason I know who reads Sanderson’s The Way of Kings series is because they read Wheel of Time and they are the only way I got through WOT was Kate and Michael’s reading it to me. I am listening to a book now called The Diviners and enjoying it. But

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Review: Qualityland

Qualityland was originally published in German, but the English edition came out in January 2020. And I picked it up as an audiobook for my commute. My initial impression is dammmn. It is definitely a book addressing issues of the day. Some of the references are already dated or will be within just a few years, and I don’t understand why the author seems to have a strong hatred for Jennifer Anniston romantic comedies. But the concept of personal data and online profiles is very contextual to today. I wish there had been less foul language. If it had used four-letter words slightly less often I would be able to call for this to be read in every high school. Like EVERY high school. 1984 level. The entire concept is that the main character, Peter Jobless, is struggling with who he is, how he fits in society, and how to feel like his own life is meaningful. The anti-capitalism message is

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Events: Lent 2020

I admire people who fast completely for lent, or at least give up a staple of their diet (a co-worker said he’s giving up bread except for communion – that sounds like a challenge!). I’m going to ask you be patient as I work through this particular question. I don’t like lent. I appreciate the concept, but I get a little cross-eyed when people say “I’m giving up soda for lent!” or “I’m not drinking alcohol!” or “I’m going to the gym!” And it’s not because these are bad things in themselves. But I have to bite my tongue hard and resist spraining my eyeballs on the roll. And some of this is because I don’t know why people are giving them up, they can be valid. But these aren’t spiritual in and of themselves. They can be. Any one of these might be. If drinking soda or alcohol is preventing you from being spiritual (the former is the one

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Review: The Screwtape Letters

I had not read this since high school. At the time I was deep in Southern Christian Culture (I need to post more about this sometime). I also was just young (duh, right?). When I read it then I thought it was dense and laborious. Now, with more life experience and political experience (not just legal politics, but personal/professional politics) the writing was powerful. Almost painful. I don’t write a lot about my faith, it is something I find difficult to put into words. It is very personal. And that is where Screwtape Letters hits home. It talks of a very personal theology where a young Christian is being tempted. It’s very internal, all about his own choices and lifestyle. How does he approach situations. It isn’t the action that matters, it’s the motivation. Acting humble to prove he’s humble isn’t the same as actually being humble. There were several chapters I almost want to take out and individually discuss,

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Review: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

I almost don’t want to review this book because I feel like I need to read it again to do it justice. Part of this is because my sister told me she enjoyed it the most the third time she read it. I also listened to it (since the end of Anna, this has been my commute-audiobook) and this is a rare book I don’t think works as well in audio form the first time. The biggest reason for this “don’t listen to it first” comes from two things. There is a prophecy which is only actually given in it’s complete form once.  And in a very active scene. And it sounds like gibberish for another 100 pages. The book also has a lot of footnotes, which I think the audio book did an excellent job of incorporating, but the footnotes are wordy and at times distracting from the overall novel. Lastly, I went into this book with high expectations

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Politics: Democratic Candidates

Now that the primaries are about to kick off, I am going to take some time to discuss my top 5 Democratic candidates. I am going to begin by explaining my “ranking” here: I don’t have one. I like these candidates best. I will vote for anyone with a pulse who is not Trump. I don’t have a specific favorite among the democrats, I have elements I like about these 5 more than the rest. So to put some kind of order, I went with national polling per FiveThirtyEight.com as of 1/29. Biden is still leading the pack with more than 25%. I like that he’s a moderate, I think it makes him more appealing to more people (if the left-extremists don’t decide to sit in the corner and pout again this cycle ’cause they didn’t get their guy). There are still somewhere between 15-25% of “undecided” and “independant” voters in key states who flip flop between the parties. I

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Memories: Being a Mom

Winter always reminds me of when I knew I wanted to be a mom. I remember because it was winter when I realized this was important to me. It was 2004 and I was dating a guy pressuring me to have sex. I was asking myself a LOT of questions totally appropriate for a 20-year old. Did I want to have kids? What did I want to do with my life? What kind of relationships did I want in my life? Was I ok having sex before marriage? (I grew up in the South and in a Southern Church, this was still very radical!). All healthy questions to ask as you enter adulthood. I had a dream one night. In this dream I was a mom with 4 boys and pregnant. I didn’t know what I was pregnant with (boy or girl) but in the dream, in the way of dreams, I knew I had teased my husband we were

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SCOTUS: Decisions

I’m a Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) nerd. I’m not going to cite myself as any sort of expert. I’m like a ham radio aficionado who likes SETI. I get the theory of what it’s supposed to be about, but I do not have the depth to really grasp everything. With that disclaimer, there are a few cases that the Supreme Court heard last fall (Oct) and I look forward to seeing their decisions on: Barton v. Barr This is an interesting bit of immigration law. If a permanent resident gets called before immigration court for possible deportation, there is an option for them to put in for “cancellation of removal.” The person has to have lived in the US continuously for seven years (and a few other provisions). This is an interesting bit because it is addressing deportation vs. exclusion for admission. In Barton’s case, the wording being addressed deals with:  “a lawfully admitted permanent resident’s period

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