the long overdue health report is that since i’ve been back from burning man, i’ve been experiencing some moderate to severe physical symptoms that are vague yet consistent. these include: dizziness, vertigo, weakness, fatigue, strange burning/tingling sensations in my head and up and down my extremities, nerve tweaks/spasms, vision funkiness, pressure in my head, and sometimes nausea.
a few weeks ago i went to see my general physician and she didn’t have much to say – such vague symptoms without anything really “happening”, she couldn’t give me a diagnosis other than i should literally and figuratively get my head checked: revisit a neurologist, given my history of seizures (which were never attributed to anything specific being wrong), and possibly a psychologist/psychiatrist, to see about my anxiety.
after looking at my old records and giving me a few tests and asking a few pertinent questions, the neurologist also figures it’s generalized anxiety, as i don’t actually have what one would call a “headache” (suggesting a scary problem like a brain tumor), and my cognitive functions have remained just fine (suggesting i haven’t had any seizures), but with the continuing persistence of symptoms i am having the MRI and EEGs done again next week.
at the end of last week i thought i was getting better, that every day i was feeling a bit stronger, and i was feeling 90% ok. but then saturday came, and i spent the whole day weak and trembly, and since then i’ve felt horrid.
this has been more or less occupying most of my time, dealing with this, and has kept me from doing a lot of things, being a lot of places, writing a lot of blogs. i’ve been able to function at work just fine, although i’m probably a bit more irritable and surly than i should be, and i’ve tried to go on with my life as though everything is fine, which is maybe the worst thing to do, not ignoring the problem but not letting it take over my life. but everywhere i go, i am monitoring all these strange sensations in my body. when i walk down the street for lunch, i wonder if i’ll fall to my knees. when i’m sitting in a theatre seeing a play, i feel weak and wonder what would happen if i lost consciousness. like the world is so heavy, and my life force so weak, that i just might collapse under the weight of it all. i have also had a couple of standard anxiety attacks – the sweaty palms, the difficulty breathing – but these other symptoms are pretty much nonstop. all day long. the weakness and dizziness, and weird pressure/tingling in my head. i haven’t fallen, i haven’t lost consciousness, but it constantly feels like i might.
it’s so hard to write this here, i don’t know why. maybe because i don’t want to hear everyone’s advice or seem like i’m asking for sympathy. or maybe because it feels like i am overreacting, and putting this into writing here, for everyone to read, feels like making a mountain out of a molehill, exaggerating my symptoms. are they really as bad as they seem? or am i just being hypersensitive? maybe because its so personal, and when things are really deep, really personal, i am usually silent, and this seems like a lot of myself to share. or maybe because regardless of what is or what isn’t, i’m fucking scared.Filed in autobiographical, epilepsy, food, health & vegetarianism, me myself and i, most linked/commented on | Tagged with anxiety | Comments (12)
i took this survey on sleep disorders after vera linked to some info about them. this focusses particularly on the experience of waking in the middle of the night and being unable to move while sensing beings or movement in the room. many who have experienced this have attributed the experience to alien abduction because it is so surreal yet vivid and intense.
i haven’t had a seizure in over a year. i’m still taking the meds. this survey made me remember – physically remember – the experiences and those that lead up to them. here are some of my answers to the questions, to give you an idea of how totally freaky the whole experience can be:Filed in epilepsy | Comment (1)
i went to the neurologist again this morning to see if he had any new ideas on my seizure problem. he didn’t. i didn’t give him the whole story, for various reasons, but i wanted to find out a few things, particularly if the panic attacks i have recently suffered might have anything to do with either my epilepsy medication (as a side effect) or if they are indicators of seizure itself. because i’ve never had a seizure while awake, i don’t know what one feels like. but i have had panic attacks, and i figured they must be related.Filed in epilepsy | Comments (2)
i was out sick yesterday because of seizures for the third time this year. the first time was april 11th, and, then again in august. tuesday night i had three seizures while sleeping, and then last night i had one more. the frequency is increasing, and i’m starting to get worried. i haven’t been taking my medication regularly because it makes me feel kind of spacey *all* the time, and previously the seizures were only once a year or so. I will try doing that and see if it helps. i just HATE the thought of taking medication twice a day every day for the rest of my life, but i guess at this point i have no choice. the thing that sucks most is that when i call up the neurologist and tell him my seizures have been more frequent, he’s going to take my driver’s license away (state law).
why is this happening to me??Filed in epilepsy | Comments (12)
early this morning, i had another seizure. jay woke me up around 7:00a, and i felt absolutely awful. i think the worse thing about it is that i can’t remember ANYTHING for the first half hour or so when i wake up… i sat for several minutes trying to remember what month it was.
i met a guy at my friend kirstens birthday party last weekend who is now a resident in my neurologist’s office. we talked about my experiences with epilepsy for quite some time, and he made me feel a lot better about all this. he reconfirmed what i had been told and read about it not having any permanent effects, unless you stop breathing for too long of course, and that if this is only happening occassionally then taking the prescribed medications, three times a day, which made me totally spacey, really wasn’t worth it. at first i was also concerned that my strict diet might have been a source of the problem, but they didn’t think so. my blood tests and everything have always returned normal; actually, better than they expected.
so i’m going to give him a call and see if he recommends any action, or if i should just continue with my “wait and see” strategy. anyway, i’m seriously groggy and out of it, so i won’t be posting/responding much today.
i was out sick from work yesterday because early yesterday morning, while i was sleeping, i had another seizure. i really wish someone could tell me what the hell is going on with these things. i woke up feeling totally disoriented and with every muscle in my body aching. i went to work briefly and was home in bed again by 10:00 a.m. and didn’t move from there again until this morning. It’s weird how disoriented you get – trying to remember small things like the last place i had my coffee cup or what i left off doing at work on Wednesday. it takes a few days for my memory to recall everything. i’m not sure if i’m going to go through the whole rigamarole with the neurologists again, or what. if i go back to see the dr., they’ll a. take away my driver’s license again, which SUCKS, and b. put me on medication, which in effect zones me out most of the day anyway.
the past three years, i’ve had these seizures once per year, right around this time – April/May/June, and then that’s it. the doctor thought it might be an allergy, could also be my sleeping problems catching up with me, or even daylight savings time? but couldn’t give me anything conclusive. all my brain scans and blood tests came back normal before, but i guess maybe i should have them run again? i dont know. it’s a waste of my time and money for me to keep going and have them keep telling me they don’t know what’s wrong. the very nature of epilepsy is that it’s defined by unexplained seizures, so i’m not sure there’s anything that can be done. *sigh* why me? i have to ask.Filed in epilepsy | Comment (1)
07.19.02::we all need a revolution … you know… we all want to change the world…more talk of the world and revolution by young internetaddict-wannabe-worldchangers…
take the EarthPrint Quiz and find out how much impact your lifestyle is having on the planet. i live a fairly “conservative” lifestyle as far as “green” goes, in my opinion; i’m a vegetarian, i rarely drive, i recycle and eat non-processed, fresh foods, and yet, according to this quiz, we would need 2.4 Earth-planets if everyone in the world lived the same lifestyle that i do. however, im wondering what kinds of answers to this quiz would result in a “good job- we only need one world to support your lifestyle” answer….
in semi-related news, the Illinois house passed AB 5793, which prevents people from taking photographs or film of factory farms, under the guise of protecting the farms from terrorists….. seems like a stretch to me … more like protecting them from people who want to show what nasty ass places factory farms are ….
07.18.02 ::random thoughts of today ::
drink of the morning:Odwalla Superfood:
apple juice, peaches, mangoes, strawberries, bananas, spirulina (1700 mg), soy lecithin, open cell chlorella (335 mg), royal jelly, wheat grass, barley grass, wheat sprouts, jerusalem artichoke, lemon bioflavonoid, and nova scotia dulse.yummy!!
07.16.02 ::on the road to recovery::
taking mare's advice, i returned the $70 skirt to urban outfitters last night, and then had to RUN out of the store before i was tempted to buy anything else, like a 12" red velvet laughing buddha piggy-bank.
did i mention that for some reason i've been listening to " the low spark of high heeled boys" on repeat in the car for like, 4 days? i can't get that song out of my head, and usually to get a song out of my head, i have to hear it. but in this case, it just keeps staying in my head and i keep listening to it. and, i think i might be the only woman my age who even owns that album, which somehow makes it all the worse.
there are a few things about me that i'd wager many people don't know or wouldn't guess. one of those things is that i flip people the bird quite often while driving without even meaning to. it's an instant reaction; someone blows their horn at me, i flip them off. most of the time i don't even mean to, and i actually think it's really rude. but, yet, when it happens, there goes my finger, in the air.
another thing is that i'm a shopoholic. i know, i know, with all my anti-consumer ranting and eco-friendly philosophies, how is it that i'm still out blowing money like a drunken sailor whenever i get the chance? well, that's the thing that bothers me the most, and is actually the reason why i subscribe to mags like adbusters; because i'm a victim of the consumer mentality.
this weekend i went shopping on both saturday and sunday. on saturday, after my scary black-out experience (see below), walking back home i found a papasan chair frame for free out on the sidewalk by the neighbor's house. can't let a good papasan chair frame go to waste; we already have one, but hey - we could use two. so then i went out and got a cushion for the chair. there goes $50. while getting the cushion, i also bought a going-away gift for my friends who are moving to santa cruz. there goes another $15 (i know, i'm cheap). i also bought two used skirts at Crossroads, totalling $21.00. so, in one afternoon, i spent $96. then yesterday i decided to go into SF while jay had to work and go shopping at Union Square. after being in Victoria's Secret for only 20 minutes, i had already picked out $100 worth of underwear. now, i know it's easy to spend $100 on underwear at V.S.; the shit's expensive. however, for someone like me who rarely wears underwear, it's stupid. so i put back everything except for one tank top and walked out having only spent $25. so, down the street to the Body Shop. i really only wanted some patchouli oil (i know many of you are gagging...but i love the stuff), but walked out with oil, body wash, some cherry lip gloss, and tea tree oil face blotters for a total of $45. then, off to urban outfitters, which is my favoritist store. people should NOT let me go in this store. i know many people think things there are overpriced, but i do a LOT of shopping and i think that a lot of their stuff is actually very reasonably priced, especially if it's on sale, and it's all oh-so-cute!!!! anyway .... a long story short... i bought a $70 skirt and then had to go find a $25 shirt to match it.
total spent on random crap i didn't really need this weekend: $251.00. it could have been much worse had i bought everything that i had my hands on. mind you, AS I WAS DRIVING into the city i was thinking about how much money i owe my student loans and my credit cards, etc. (around $20k, if you must know, and that does not include the Jetta) and telling myself that i need to start being really careful with my finances or i'm never going to get out of debt. and what happened? i blew a bunch of dough. i swear, my brain has no problem telling itself one thing and letting me do another. so, when i got home, i decided to return the $70 skirt and the $14 used skirt because i felt like such an idiot, and i went through my closet to find things that i could sell back to Crossroads to try to make some money. as if that will help. i tried cutting up all my credit cards once, but then found that i couldn't buy concert tickets online, and since that is a necessity, i always have a card on hand. and then that card gets used for things like $50 worth of crap from the Body Shop. blah.
07.13.02 ::fade to black::
today has been a very messed up day. jay had to go into work today, so i had the whole day to myself. i got up at 9:00 and drove jay to the train station, and then came back home. i told myself to not go back to bed; to get up and make hte most of a beautifully sunny saturday. i also need to finish reading Faster because we are scheduled to have book club on Tuesday and neither one of us has finished it. so i came back home, got into bed, and read about 10 pages before i fell asleep. for a book about how fast the world has become, it sure does read slow.
so i was super lazy and rolled around in my sun-drenched bed until 2:30 in the afternoon. i know, many people can't sleep for more than 8 or 9 hours, but i can. i can sleep for 12-14 easily, and i quite often do on the weekends. plus, since jay wasn't around, i was bored and i sleep when i'm bored. anyway, so i finally got up, showered, did the weekend morning ritual (if you know me you know what that means) and decided to go and get a manicure since i have really long natural nails and if i don't get them cut/filed, they break off. if i try to cut/file them myself, they end up all different lengths and look weird. so once a month or so i go get them trimmmed.
anyway, i'm sitting there at the nail parlor and the woman is trimming my cuticles when i start to get really dizzy. you know - you get kind of woozy and everything goes black for a half-second or so. this happens to me every now and then - not frequently but has happened before and so i figured it would end in a few seconds. at this point i also hadn't eaten or drank anything -- i'm not a breakfast person and i usually have to be up for a few hours before i can consume any food. i know breakfast is supposed to be the most important meal of the day, but i just can't eat right when i get up, and yes, i am one of those people who forgets to eat until i absolutely have to. so i'm sitting there, taking deep breaths and hoping the dizzyness will pass, and it doesn't. the woman doing my nails doesn't notice and so i say "please stop for a minute; i'm getting really dizzy." for some reason i look at the clock; it says 3:45. it keeps getting worse, and after about 15-30 seconds i can't see anymore. i mean, i'm aware that my eyes are open but it's total blackness and i am having trouble breathing. talking is very hard at this point, but i tell her that i need a drink of water and that i need to lie down. she brings me the water and has to hold the cup right up to my lips because i still can't see. i'm getting really freaked out but am also so woozy/dizzy/blind that i don't know what to do. i'm wondering what i look like to this woman; are my eyes rolling back in my head? are they closed? i can't tell.
she doesn't try to lead me anywehre to lie down; i don't think she knows what to do. i lean back in the chair and try to breathe, hoping i don't pass out right then and there. after a long while i'm able to focus again, realize that i've broken out into a cold sweat, and ask for more water. i look at the clock; it says 3:50. so it has been 5 mintues that i was sitting there, unable to see and having trouble breathing. the woman brings me almost-hot water to drink, which is perfect. she barely speaks english, but i ask "why did you bring me warm water?" knowing that it is absorbed faster by the body that way, but thinking it's weird that this woman brought a customer warm water. "it better that way" she says. i'm talking now and can see again, but still feel weird, but the woman picks up my hands and just continues to do my nails. i let her, although i still don't feel good, because i also didn't want to get up and try to walk home at that point. my manicure is finished, and the woman says "thank you". no one else in the parlor seemed to notice that i about passed out on the floor.
after all that i went down the street to get a soy mocha and a chocolate croissant (for the protein and the sugar) and then walked back home, but was afraid to lie down again for fear of not waking up. it's a horrible feeling when you're afraid to fall asleep. i'm thinking this happened for one of three reasons a) i was dehydrated and also had low blood sugar from not eating or drinking all day; b) the toxic fumes in the nail parlor totally made me sick, or c) i had a partial seizure while awake today. i'm epileptic; i have seizures in my sleep sometimes, but have never had one during the day while awake. i'm not sure if this was a seizure though, because i was thinking the whole time and concentrating on NOT passing out, and from what i understand when you have a waking seizure you're not aware of anything. i'm pretty sure that it was a low blood sugar problem or a combination of a) and b); jay (who is diabetic) said that the same thing happens to him when his blood sugar is really low.
after a short recovery period at home, i went about my day, went to Jack London Square and did a little shopping, got some stuff to make dinner, and came home. i feel fine, but am nervous. i guess i'm going to have to call the neurologist again on Monday and schedule some more appointments, but maybe not. one of my friends recently passed out while taking a shower, and they never figured out why. sometimes things just happen i guess, but things seem to be "happening" more and more. anyone out there suffer from fainting or had this experience?
07.12.02 ::particle people!::
good morning y'all --
let me just say that my butt and my knees are SO SORE from dancing my self into oblivion last night at Particle @ the GAMH. my friend Sarah and I were right in the front row for their set, and it was awesome up to be up there. i can't BELIEVE how much i dig this band; it's been quite some time since i've found a *whole* band that really really rocked my world (as opposed to single musicians like Stanton Moore who rocks my world too ) since i'm such a music snob, but even after seeing them twice at HSMF, i couldn't wait to see them again this week. (sidenote: the opening band RAQ ... um. not good. i could be wrong, but i believe at one point they were channeling Eminem.... and is yet another band that could do without the singing and cheezy lyrics....)
back to Particle :: they are a super talented, funky, and extremely MARATHON jamming band (for those of you who aren't familiar [probably most of you]- 4 man band: guitar, drums, keyboards, bass. no vocals. in the rock and roll and funk genre, but heavier on the rock and roll side...). i don't even know what time they started; i'm guessing it was around.... 11:00 ...and they didn't stop until 1:15. that's not THAT long of a period, but for the type of music and amount of energy they're putting out, i think it is. i really really dig Charlie Hitchcock's guitar - it's on the edge there and kind of reminds me of Clapton a little bit (?), and Steve on the keyboards is just super fun to watch -- that guy jumps around like a maniac! anyway, i'm not one for long technical reviews on shows, but i just wanted to give a 2 thumbs up! if any of you out there are looking to find a new rock band, check them out.
07.11.02.2 ::moving on::
ok, so the day has gotten better since this morning.
on tonight's music menu:: RAQand psychedelic breakfast opening up for Particle @ GAMH. all three of these bands just played at high sierra, but i can't wait to see Particle again for the third time this week
07.11.02 ::self pity::
i think i'm going to remove the comments function on my blog. i just get depressed when i go to other people's sites and their posts about some random-ass crap gets 18 comments and my posts get 3, if they're lucky. even my own boyfriend never comments (slacker!). i don't need anything else in my life that makes me feel like a loser. i have enough of that already. i know this blog is really just my journal and i shouldn't care if anyone else reads it, but somehow blogging has gotten competitive with all the "best blog" awards and linkage crap. at least in my mind anyway, but then again i'm just paranoid.
the cover story of the current issue of TIME magazine is on vegetarianism and it's current place in america. it's a fairly neutral story, giving both "good" and "bad" aspects of not only being a vegetarian, but also NOT being a vegetarian. lots of information is presented in a soft way; not too informative if you're already a practicing vegi/vegan, but still a good read. check it out.
oh, and i forgot to mention yesterday that the WORST thing about HSMF was that they friggin had DRUG DOGS sniffing all the cars at the gate to the festival. it freaked absolutely everyone out, and unfortunately some of our friends got pulled out of the line and busted. now, i'm pretty sure that at least 80% of the people going in the festival had illegal substances on them, and so it doesn't make sense that these dogs only "picked out" one out of every 20 cars or so. it seemed like the cops just had regular dogs and were using them as an excuse to pull the hippier/dreadier looking people out of their cars. it sucked! once you got inside the gates, security was pretty lax, but it sure felt like a police state going in. so - for all your california festival goers out there -beware of the canines.
also, someone (hi allan) asked me how come i like Particle so much but don't like Sector 9. well, the thing about STS9 that i don't like is the background synth and "electronica" sounds they try to blend in. it's all too cheezy, and i just don't like the way they mix it all together. also being a hardcore DJ/electronica fan, i think it sounds like crap because i've heard so much better. the shows are all to rave-like and i just can't deal. i stuck my head into the latenight show on Sat. for a minute and just couldn't stand the crackhead/e-tard vibe going on in there. it's the same with the bluegrass/rock mix - i just don't think many bands do it well, and i prefer to keep them separate. i like electronica. i like blugrass. i love jazz. i love rock. i really don't like them mixed unless it's done REALLY well, which i don't think most of the "jambands" do. Particle is straight up rock/funk, and i really dig their groove. plus, with them there's no singing, which IMO ruins a lot of really good jambands -- they have lame lyrics or bad singing voices and ruin potentially great jams as soon as they open their mouths -- such is the case with Umphrey's McGee. shut up and play, i say!
07.08.02 ::psychedelic ho-down::
well, it's monday morning and i'm already back at the office, far far away from my hot tent at High Sierra. being my first HSMF, i didn't know what to expect, and so was very pleasantly surprised with the venue and the crowd. it was a beautiful spot in the mountians (although not really "high" sierra - elevation there was low), the campgrounds were nice, and the people were all so laid back and cool - very few tour rats, common at most other jamband-oriented festivals. i had a super good time chilling and getting a lot of sun and relaxing.
I went to high sierra hoping to redefine my opinions of some bands that i have seen in the past that i didn't really like (namely STS9 and Umphrey's McGee). unfortunately that didn't happen - i still don't like them. i knew, however, going up there that the music wasn't exactly my scene, and so it wasn't that big of a deal. the funniest thing though about the music was the fact that i didn't quite think about what the whole intersection between bluegrass and psychadelic drugs might look like. being that i was never a "Deadhead" and haven't attended many of these events (phish shows don't count), i was extremely entertained by the number of people tripping on mushrooms and/or acid that were trying to square dance or dance at all to the bluegrass music. it was hilarious!!!
however, i did finally get to see Particle, and out of all the bands i saw over the past 4 days, they were the only band that really rocked my world and turned me into a big fan. I went to see them twice while i was there and am hopefully going to see them again this Thursday in SF. Although still a "jamband", these guys are much more rock/blues oriented and don't involve banjos or cheesy synthesizer background sounds like a lot of the other bands that try to blend rock and roll with bluegrass.
it was also really nice that there was little or no reference to the 4th of July (other than "hey, today is the 4th, right?") and no fireworks or flag waving or anyone grandstanding and giving long speeches about "how different the world is after 9/11" or any of that. there were a few people with sparkly red/white/blue hats and stuff on, but not many. seems "unpatriotic", but some of us (or 8,000 of us) don't really like the compulsory patriotism that seems to spreading around, and if that makes us the enemy, then fine.
anyway, i had a GREAT time and will probably go back again next year, this time more prepared to embrace the psychedelic ho-down.
12 more hours until we head off to high sierra music festival, where we'll be inundated with more jambands than i can even keep track of. the whole "jamband" scene (definition: post- grateful dead / phishlike psychadelic rock / sometimes funk and/or bluegrass influenced music that tends to involve looooong songs and lots of hippies) is not one i'm usually part of; in SF i'm way more into the jazz / electronica / undefined music scene, but go to certain jamband shows every now and then. i'm going to this music festival because a) it's way up in the mountains and will be super beautiful, b)it's the 4th of july weekend and it's always cold and foggy here in the bay area c) lots of my friends are going and c) some of the bands i know will be good, while others i expect to be mediocre. the fact that i expect them to be mediocre keeps me from being let down, so all in all it should be a fun time. i know that for some people who are really into the scene, the above reasons are blasphemy, but hey! to each his own i say.
anyway, i hope everyone out there has a happy and safe 4th. to quote 'ms. stroud' from dazed and confused:
07.02.02 ::i read the news today, oh boy....
i spend a lot of my time surfing the net reading the news. some of the news sites i visit most often are the environmental news network, the san francisco chronicle (for local news; otherwise i think it's absolutely horrid reporting), reuters, and NPR (in addition to those listed below on the left in my environmental and activist news section).
the news is very depressing. people rarely report good news; when they do, it seems cheezy and lame (e.g.kids make balloon animals at local school!! yay!!). sometimes i wonder if my mental health would be better if i didn't read the news everyday. if i just avoided the newspaper and news-related internet sites, i might be happier person (note Boondocks cartoon above).
for example, this morning in the news i read that NYC is rolling back it's recycling program and won't be recycling plastic or glass for at least 1-2 years. this may seem insignificant to some, but from an environmental standpoint this is really horribly depressing - that an entire city government has decided that recycling just isn't worth the cost anymore. the amount of trash that NYC alone produces every day is enormous, and this will only make it worse. hopefully this will not inspire other cities to do the same. for some facts about NYC garbage policies, visit the New York Public Interest Research Group. for a really interesting timeline about the history of garbage and consumer habits in america, check out the rotten truth about garbage.
now, on another note, this is not to say that i personally do not produce garbage. of course i do. i think a lot of people who read my site (or my emails to friends/listservs/newsgroups) figure i think i'm some kind of a saint or something who never eats animals, produces garbage, buys things made in China, or abuses even a spider's civil rights. i do not pretend to live a perfectly clean life, and sometimes i find it infuriating when people respond to me "you're always writing to us about all this stuff (e.g. garbage, pollution, etc), but you do it too. you're not perfect either." well, i never said i was, and i don't understand why people think you're talking down to them when you try to spread ideas and information about something. i do try to to the best i can with my consumer choices and my lifestyle given what i know, and that is all i expect from other people as well. it's that simple.
"Destiny, or Karma,
depends on what the soul has done about what it has become
aware of." --Edgar Cayce
07.01.02 ::last to know::
i always feel like i'm the last to know when it comes to these new internet buzzwords (or dork terms, or whatever. i guess if they're dork terms, then i shouldn't feel bad about being the last to know, should i?). the most recent term i've been seeing EVERYONE refer to that i just couldn't find a good definition for is " meme" (pronounced "meem" like "dream" or, if you're french, "mem"). you know those stupid emails where there are 30 questions about your favorite flavor of ice cream and what you think about britney spears? those are apparently "memes". there. so now we both know.
june 2002 Filed in autobiographical, epilepsy | Comment (0)
::We were somewhere around Barstow on the edge of the desert when the drugs began to take hold….::
so it’s another three day weekend for me and jay. tomorrow morning we’ll be driving to vegas for to see at least 4 bands, possible more:
particle at midnight tomorrow night, the roots and antibalas opening for the trey anastasio band on Saturday night [for all you non-phisheads, trey is (was?) the lead singer/guitar for Phish], and possibly Particle again. woo hoo!
we will also be seeing a bunch of our east coast friends who are making the trek for the shows; it should be a totally raucous weekend, and i can tell you right now that monday is going to suck, but i’ll try not to think about that now.
05.28.02 back to the grind
the NASA dialog always gets comments. it’s a very hot topic, apparently.
anywho, i’m back from a great weekend of camping up on California’s =http://www.sunset.com/Premium/Travel/1997/09-Sep/LostCoast997/LostCoast997.html“lost coast”, which is lost to most Californians, except for those with monster trucks, camouflage, and loud barking dogs. The number of people driving large 4×4 trucks up and down the beach was not only really annoying but unsafe as they were all drunk driving. Now, i grew up in a pretty redneck town, and that kind of thing can be fun if done in an appropriate place/time (like on private property…). However, this was a public campground, and i felt physically endangered by these people; we couldn’t even hang out on the beach without the fear of getting run over. they also disrupted the quiet wilderness with their loud trucks and radios blaring Eminem, and that’s just not cool. to respond, i have prepared a complaint letter to be sent to the Ranger’s office. there was absolutely no one there to stop them from tearing through the campground and ripping up the beach.
Outside of that contingent, due to the unmarked, 6 mile winding dirt road to the campground, it was a very secluded campground that was not overrun by old people with large campers and families with screaming children, which you usually get on memorial day weekend. Once the 4x4s went to bed, it was nice.
then back to work today, for complete culture shock after the 4×4 experience i work for a very small environmental consulting firm, and the majority of people here (that would be everyone but me) hold advanced degrees (law, masters or Ph.Ds) from ivy league universities. during our staff meeting this morning, these are some of the words that were used in conversation that i either only had a vague contextual notion of or had to come back to my desk to look up: byzantine, ephemeral, eviserated, impetus, garner. it’s like i’m going to school everyday. but, i guess that’s a bad thing.
finally, last but not least, 2 quick prescription positives for this week:
1. only a 3 day work week!!
for many years i have publically and privately hated NASA. Outside of some of the good things (such as….. missile defense is the only one i can think of), i think it’s a waste of money. i hear all kinds of reasons why people think it’s a good thing, e.g. “what if earth is inhabitable one day? we need to have somewhere to go”(sidenote: this article based on a U.N. report says “one day” could be in about 30 years- is NASA going to find another inhabitable planet and be able to get us all there in the next 30 years? i think not.) , “what if they find god out there?”(yeah, right), and “they’ve discovered so much important stuff!” (like what? medicines? very few.).
also, people give defenses like NASA has the smallest budget of any Federal Agency”. true. but that’s still 13-14 billion dollars every year, even if it is only 1%. that money would certainly do some good for the education system, say, in Detroit, feed starving people around the world for many years, or help solve some of the water problems here in California.
we have so many horrible, existing problems on this planet right now that need to be taken care of, spending all that money on trying to find life on Mars seems like such a waste to me. what good would finding life on Mars do again? and i don’t want any comments about “if it weren’t for the space program you wouldn ‘t have the computer you’re using right now” and all that. so what? would my life be over then? no.
05.22.02 : i’m obsessed
so, one of my OCDs [yes i am using that term lightly] is that there are certain online “tasks” i have to take care of when i get to work before i can actually start working. one of those things is checking my email (personal, not work). did anyone email me today? what’s up with the latest concerts in SF? did anyone respond to that spam email i forwarded that said if you didn’t say a prayer to Jesus within 10 minutes of reading the email then Satan would own your soul for eternity?
another is checking this site to see if anyone has actually read this page, and now that i have SiteMeter, i can see all my traffic too. i know, it’s a bit Big Brother, but hey, it’s my site and i can if i want. (i hope my boss isn’t reading this, but if he was, i would know! mwuuuhahahha!).
i know other bloggers also get paranoid about not being able to check their blogs (or other people’s), like you might be missing something very important.
it’s called addiction. it’s called obsession. here it is 4:00 p.m., and due to the power outage this morning that lasted until 2:30 today, i haven’t done a lick of work. partly because first i wrote this entry, my computer froze, and i had to rewrite the whole thing again. had to. that’s how bad it is.
you know it’s going to be a fun day when you get to work and realize you forgot to put on deodorant.
i really should blog more on the weekends, because by the time Monday rolls around, i’ve forgotten everything. so, what can i say about the weekend, and what are my prescription positives for this week?
Friday night was blah, as jay and i were both exhausted due to thursday night. so we did nothing. Saturday was incredibly beautiful and sunny, and we went for a walk, took a nap, and then went to visit my friend Greg out at Ocean Beach. After that, we went to visit our friend Andrew (of transmission fame), where we watched O Brother Where Art Thou? again, and ate lots of junk food. On sunday, it was pouring outside, but we made it out long enough to visit the nearest Cost Plus World Market to by myself a long-desired Papasan chair and a nice rug for the living room. Then we came home and couched. not all that exciting, but good weekend nontheless.
also, i don’t know what it is, but i get a lot of comments from random women in convenience stores and places about my appearance. Usually these women are, um, how shall we say, lower middle class looking, and loud talkers. After the Prince concert, i was wearing these hip-hugger bellbottom pants with my midriff showing. We were in the 7-11 and this really loud lady came up to me and said “girl, you should wear a THONG with those pants” (um, i was… but she meant one that showed) “man, if i didn’t already have 6 kids a big belly and lots of stretch marks, i would dress like you.” and then just yesterday, some scary looking woman came up to me at the store, gave me the eye, and then said in this really creepy voice with squinty eyes “i like your hair.” and then walked away. wtf??
::prescription positives:: for mondays:
1. tonight jay and i are going to see The Kids in the Hall live at the warfield in SF. Hopefully it will be hilarious.
2. After the rain, the trees are much greener and lots of the rose gardens bloomed. I love Berkeley flora!
3. Our new apartment is finally starting to look like we live there. We got a lot of the crap cleaned up and most of the boxes are gone.
4. A week from Friday we head to Vegas for the Trey Anastasio Band shows!! Hopefully I’ll be meeting up with quite a few phunkies. yay!
btw, i am reading the funniest book right now: Naked by David Sedaris. seriously – makes me laugh so hard i cry, no kidding. check it out.
that’s it for now.
so we went to check out the Josh Roseman Unit last night at the Starry Plough in Berkeley. definitely worth the $6. with Scott Amendola on the drums and so many other fabulous musicians in the band, especially the wacky mr. roseman (who rambled on and repeated himself quite a bit), i had a good time. the only drawback, i would say, was that the sax player didn’t rip it up quite enough, but still jammed. definitely check these guys out if they come around to your neck of the woods, especially in such a small venues as the Starry Plough. their new album was just released – check it out at the link above.
only in berkeley
perhaps the coolest part of the evening happened before the show even started. i was talking to an older gentleman at the bar who was really into jazz and the local scene about taping and such; he was also kind of goofy, and when our converstaion ended, he thanked me for my stream of consciousness.
music fans: please check out this link from jambase.com about possible legislation that could affect the music scene all across the U.S. it only takes about 30 seconds to send an email to your Representative (link at the bottom of that page), so please do.
so after all my self-affirmation yesterday, getting my butt in gear and going to the gym and to yoga, i still turned out to be a total idiot. Jennifer, if you’re reading this, i’m so sorry!!. i got home from yoga and started to get read y for bed, when amy called to see if i was still at the cafe. at the cafe? i thought that was tomorrow night . crap. i totally flaked without even meaning to. i hate it when that happens!!
so, anyway, at the end of the yoga class, the teacher proceeded to read a passage from a book that basically said “most of the stress in our lives comes from trying to change things: change other people, change our spouses, change our government. the true secret to happiness is to not try to change the world around you. see the world as it is, and accept that everything is already in order and as it should be. most importantly, accept yourself.”
i had a knee jerk reaction to that passage. “no!” my mind screamed. “do not accept things as they are!”. now, i’m all for new age enlightenment; i studied the Tao and have continued to study alternative forms of therapy, medicine, and thinking. but, in this day and age, there is so much in the world that needs changing. our daily lives, our diets, our schools, our governments, our politics, our stereotypes. My response to such Eastern Philosophies is that they are self-centered: sure, it’s good to accept yourself, and that is one of the keys to happiness. but to accept fundamentalist religions? to accept corrupt governements? no.
now, i know that if everyone in the world took on that book’s philosphy, then it might be a better place. if all the world decided to stop trying to change the rest of the world, we wouldn’t have the problems we have in the middle east. we wouldn’t have genocide or racism. BUT, wouldn’t we still have pollution? wouldn’t we still have corportate corruption? i guess i’m overly skeptical about the “love yourself, love everyone and the world will be o.k.” philosophy. when read literally, it does not sound productive or compassionate; to me it sounds selfish, even though it focuses so much on “selflessness”. i guess i just don’t get it.
Better by far to see the simplicity
of raw silk’s beauty
and the uncarved block;
to be one with onself,
and with one’s brother.
It is better by far
to be one with the Tao,
removing the wish,
but being compassionate.Tao Te Ching chapter 19
so i’m gonna brain dump here for a minute, 16-year-old journal style.
i’ve been really bored with myself lately. i stopped going to the gym a month or so (or was it longer?) ago, since it didn’t seem to be doing any good. when i get home from work i’m listless. retardedly enough, i enjoy blogging and websurfing more than anything else right now. somehow writing this webpage and surfing the web (see etcetera) and linking it all back here feels like an accomplishment. i haven’t seen any of my CA friends in forever. when i wake up in the morning, all i can think is “just have to get through today.” and then what? nothing.
self affirmation:i’m going to go to yoga tonight. i’m going to see aimee tomorrow and watch the final episode of Friends. this weekend i’m going to do *something* with myself other than sleep all day and lay around the house.
bright spot in the future: all systems go for the road trip to Vegas for the Particle, Antibalas, and Trey shows. again, however, i need to stop looking forward and find a way to concentrate on today. but it’s just not working. *sigh*.
side note:this morning, the =http://www.mtv.com/onair/osbournes/>
Osbournes were on Howard Stern, and Kelly is releasing an album. The track they played was her singing a soft-punk version of “Papa Don’t Preach”. I could do better. maybe i should concentrate on being a rock star?
so last night was a very exciting night. First, after work i went to pick jay up at the train station and i was interviewed by Fox 2 news. apparently BART is considering making people pay a daily rate for parking in addition to their fare. as of now, parking is free as long as you pay a fare and get a ticket stub. they totally caught me off guard as i was cleaning out my car, and i said something really dumb like “i think people would rather pay a fare increase than to have to pay for parking and a fare.” now that i think about it, that’s probably not true. so, anyway, at 10:04 p.m. last night and at 6:45 this morning, there i was on the news.
[update: i just went to Vik’s for lunch, and the Indian guy behind the corner was like “hey! you were on t.v. last night!” and, i got a bunch of emails saying people saw it. wow. people around here really do watch the news.]
just before that, at 10:01 p.m., we had a 5.2 earthquake, which made the lamps at home sway. jay jumped up and said “earthquake?” and got in the doorway. i didn’t really feel it; just noticed stuff swaying. i was too focused on the news, waiting for my 30 seconds of fame.
for all you ladies out there: get your butts over to aurabelle’s new website and check out her awesome jewelry!!
so i had a pretty crappy weekend. Friday night jay and i went to see the Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, and I was thoroughly disappointed. the movie was flat; the character development was really limited, it was really violent, and i’m not a big fan of obvious digital imagry. so, i’m not going to see that again or the next installments. i’ll read the books again instead.
then, saturday morning while i was sleeping in, i had another seizure in my sleep. i woke up very confused with little or no memory capacity, my head pounding, and every muscle in my body rigid. it’s been almost a year since the last one, and i was hoping that i would never have one again. most of the reasearch i’ve done indicates that the majority of people (1in 20 people will have a seizure sometime in their lifetime) who suffer from seizures have them for unknown reasons. in general they are not harmful to your body (no long term damage) and could be the result of anything from an allergy to something you ate. anyway, i guess this means another round of doctor appointments…. blech.
regardless of all that crap, i’ll shoot out a couple of prescription positives for today anyway:
–the weather here in the Bay Area has been gorgeous lately. April-May and October-November are definitely the best months here.
–I got my Trey tickets via FedEx this morning!!! vegas here we come (again…)!
i thoroughly enjoyed Robert Walter and the band last night …. those guys were all incredible and looked like they were just having the time of their lives. I love a good funk jam!!!
Before they took the stage i got a chance to meet Stanton Moore as he was wandering about Bimbo’s … i was so excited i blushed he seemed to be baffled by the number of women coming up to him to say hello…;-)
so, our man Colin, woodwind player for Transmission (aka my favorite band), was on David Letterman last night, playing clarinet for Tom Waits. Go Colin!!
It was very cool, except for the fact that my body is apparently no longer able to stay awake past 11 p.m. Does that mean i’m getting old?
yesterday’s post changed because craig’s listtook down the postings.
in other news: 23% of organic produce found to have pesticide residues. it’s not like i thought that my produce was 100% clean – but it’s still better than non-organic: “By comparison, pesticides were found on 73 percent of the 26,571 samples of conventional foods that were tested.” for more info about organic foods and sustainable agriculture, visit my consumer issues page, or link directly to the organic consumers association.
thanks to mike for the news.
ok, so i’m totally slacking off at work, even though i just got back from vacation. it’s not my fault it’s so sunny outside!
for people who are interested, here’s my suggested short reading list for educating yourself on how to understand and change the world:
2. Emerson’s Self Reliance
3. Mark Twain’s Essays on Politics
*whew* i’m back! and, let me tell you, i had a GREAT time with all my friends and family, but it sure is good to be back home in the land of Berkeley, where the sun is warm, the night jasmine blooms, and good food abounds! most people gain weight when they go on vacation…but whenever i go to Michigan i end up losing weight because it’s not very vegetarian friendly up there.
so, anyway, i had a great time driving all over the state, seeing some snow fall, seeing my friends and family, and relaxing a little bit (but not much). some of my old friends i hadn’t seen since 1996 or 1997, and it was super fun (although my neck hurt for two whole days from headbanging too much….hahah!!).
in other news, i’m going to take a break on the diet journal here for a while, as it’s really difficult to keep, and will try to get something more interesting happening here. I’m also going to work on a webpage for my dad’s business, so that will take away from this.Filed in autobiographical, blogging, epilepsy, events, music | Comment (0)