icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
So I did my hair differently, yes, still putting off that haircut ... since 2010. And this weekend decorator!mom checked out my decor so far, sat on the bed and nodded to herself, giving it the decorator's seal of approval. Commented on the vase of pampas grass, the way the fireplace is reflected in the mirror, "Very nice," she said.

She also noted my new counter-high fridge and the double-barreled hot plate. "Is that working out for you?"

"Yeah, I'm eating more." Which isn't strictly true. I was eating before, but McDonald's and ice cream. Neither of which count as food. The previous set up, you see, had me using the upstairs kitchen, but because of storage issues, all my food supplies were kept in the basement. This meant that to cook I had to go to the basement, fill up a bag of supplies, haul it upstairs, cook, eat, then haul the supplies back downstairs and put them away.

For my aunt that system would work, so long as she could keep a few things in the freezer. She's a Lean Cuisine lady and only cooks once a week. I won't eat that processed stuff, so I actually cook, with ingredients, only I wasn't doing so when I had to schlep. I'd come home, look at the effort, and think, "I'm not all that hungry after all." And break out the ice cream.

With my mini-kitchenette I've begun cooking, though the bad eating habits are in place. Sigh.

Mom also gave me a once over (with the new wrapped ponytail). She said, "You look good."

I blinked.

"The extra weight looks good on you. You've got curves. Before, well, you didn't exactly look starved, but it was more like you were recently out of the camps and they'd just begun feeding you."

Uh-oh.

Time to store the Ben & Jerry's upstairs in the inconvenient fridge and lose some weight.

I really miss the Seattle lifestyle where I walked everywhere. It's really hard to live a healthy life in suburban Maryland.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
Finally. After two weeks of laryngitis, on Saturday my voice came out of my mouth.

I was so surprised! No rasp, only a little bit of wheeze, no struggle -- sound!

I've had another week of coughing, but today I've gone as long as forty minutes between coughs. And not all of them are throat-wracking, hacking coughs. They're getting lighter.

Wow. Soon I might not be sick at all.

*relieved* *pets the kitties, who have loved my being sick*
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
TEPCO will not have a solution to the Fukushima disaster for another ten years, according to their scientists who spoke with Senator Wyden in his recent visit.

Ten years?

So how is TEPCO handling the hot reactors in the meantime?

Remember those news reports last year, where TEPCO workers had no solution but braved radiation so they could pour water onto the exposed fuel rods? No one knew what they'd do with the radioactive water afterward, of course, but they didn't know what else to do.

That's what they're doing. Still. For the last thirteen months. They're pouring water onto the spent fuel rods, it's boiling away into radioactive steam, and, in a brilliant solution, TEPCO just dumps the radioactive water into the ocean.

The reactors, like active volcanoes, meanwhile are spitting out hot particles of caesium, strontium, and plutonium isotopes. Those particles are getting caught up in car air filters from Japan all the way to the greater Seattle area. Sea kelp as far away as the west coast of the US has been contaminated with large amounts of radioactive iodine.

TEPCO plans to continue for the next ten years.

There is a solution, one that nuclear scientists recommended at the start. The Chernobyl solution. It will cost TEPCO four reactors, but those reactors are already gone.

Petition: Tell TEPCO we can't wait ten years: Take the Chernobyl Solution.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
The rosacea treatment plan seems to be working. I'm seeing a difference in a matter of a couple of weeks, and a dramatic change after the vitamin K arrived this week.

Vitamin K to ease and erase the inflammation
I'm washing my face twice a day and then using Vitamin K cream. It feels cool and soothing. From the moment I started it, the hot sensitivity began to ease. The windburn-like redness on my cheeks appears to be evaporating, though my nose is still red and sensitive.

Sulfur soap to dissolve the spots
For the bad pustules and flaking, when they form, I use sulfur soap--sparingly, just wetting a fingertip, dabbing it on the sulfur bar, and then dotting the sulfur soap directly on the spots. The results are immediate. But I have to be careful: sulfur soap thins the skin, and can, if I use it too much, cause the blood vessels to show through. So that's for extreme use only. Someone has suggested pine tar soap, so I have to look into that.

Hylaronic acid to both moisturize scaling and dissolve the spots
Usually, if the pustules and roughness on my nose aren't terribly bad, I use hylaronic acid, spreading a dot of it over the worst areas before moisturizing at night while I watch TV. It has the texture of fresh-from-the-plant aloe and forms a tight moisturizing layer. Seems to have the same effect as the sulfur but less dramatic, more gentle.

Jojoba oil to heal the surface of my dry, irritated skin, bring back elasticity
As a wonderful night cream, I'm putting on jojoba oil. It's smoothing my dry, tight skin, restores elasticity within half an hour (no kidding!). Amazing, actually. Aside from the natural sagginess where my age is starting to show (sighs at 44) it feels like I'm getting back the skin I had in my 20s, super soft, super pliable.

Vitamins to feed my skin
I'm also taking the actual Vitamin K2, along with Vitamin E and Zinc. I notice when I don't take the vitamins in the am, my skin feels hot and tight, so they're important. I'm eating more fruit (organic apples, mangoes) and more veggies (red leaf lettuce, broccoli). I'd like to buy more foods high in antioxidants, pick up some white tea. I'm trying to drink more water as well. I still need to get Udo's oil. That will make a difference.

Stopping bad habits that affect my skin
I'm getting more conscientious about sunscreen. And no more McDonald's--that's actually the worst for my skin, I break out the very next day. Chocolate in general is not bad, but it has to be expensive chocolate in moderate amounts (dark is best). Cheap chocolate, especially combined with ice cream or cream, is bad. I'm slowly reducing my (rather high) sugar intake. I've always known it's bad for me but that's a hard one.

In particular, the vitamin K and jojoba oil are both astonishingly effective.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
Rosacea Research

I did a whole bunch of research on rosacea Saturday night. I have type one rosaecea which is the mildest but the hardest to treat because it's mostly redness. According to my aunt, dermatologists (after ruling out lupus and other diseases) usually prescribe a mild antibiotic. I don't have health care, so I have to go another route.

If you're at all interested, here's a synopsis of what I've learned.

Turns out doctors have different theories about its cause (a build-up toxins in the GI tract one dermatologist says; bacteria is one theory that's out of favor; a diet that needs to be more alkaline is the more new age approach; the timing suggests to me that it's related to hormonal shifts leading up to menopause since it goes away naturally in the late 50s/early 60s but I'm no doctor).

There's not a lot of disagreement about what helps.

There are three things to do:

1 - Discover and avoid my particular triggers.

So far sun (the worst!), wind/fans/air conditioning, chocolate, ice cream, hot foods -- both physically hot and hot-hot -- and test for niacin and tryptophan. The hard part is avoiding them. I'm trying to reduce chocolate to 1x a week. I'm better with the sunscreen now. I pretend that I don't see the mention of "lack of sleep" as a possible trigger (she says, posting at 5am).

2 - Take care of my skin. Moisturize. Don't take very hot showers or use very hot water on my face.

Use a night cream. Ingredients recommended: topical vitamin K (the NIH found it speeds the healing of bruising after cosmetic surgery) for the redness (otherwise use tetracycline); a good moisturizer for the flaking; avoid anything drying such as alcohol or witch hazel; nordihydroguaiaretic acid and oleanolic acid is the "in thing" for the inflammation, willow bark/salicyclic acid, light use of sulfur as-needed for any pustules; zinc and hyluronic acid and/or aloe for the sensitivity). Jojoba oil should help with any skin damage. There are a couple of expensive products that contain the ingredients dermatologists recommend: DERMAdoctor Calm, Cool and Corrected, Dermaglow Acne Night Anti-Aging Cream, to a lesser extent Skoah Turbo Tonic.

3 - Other than avoiding triggers, dietary changes suggested.

Eat "cooling" foods: apples, watermelon, strawberries, mango, raspberries, purple grapes -- and oh yeah, greenery like broccoli. Shift protein intake from poultry to soy and nuts, especially walnuts. Eat/drink foods high in antioxidants such as white tea, lettuce, spinach, kale, broccoli, parsley, peas, cabbage, cauliflower, soy, even some cereals and dairy, soybean oil, canola oil, and olive oil.

4 - Take antioxidants and vitamins!

Especially take vitamin K (specifically vitamin K2), vitamin E, B-complex, vitamin C, zinc, flaxseed oil and omega 3s (Udo's oil! which I need anyway for my low cholesterol). Vitamin K2 will also help my bone density as aids in the body's use of calcium!
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
Predictably, I ate too many cough drops.

Was that sorbitol? Oops.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
Found a helpful site with immediately usable info about cancer.

Time to eat your broccoli.

I thought I had to leave for work. Then I realized I have another hour.

\o/

(It's the little things.)
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
Oh. Joy. WG received a letter that his insurance claim has been refused. The insurance company insists that he has to file with L&I.

WG's been pacing and worried all day. There has been no other topic of conversation today.

He spoke with the union trust people immediately. They were surprised at his company's insistance that you have to report injuries for L&I within a 72-hour window. The woman there said, "I had some pain in my hand that I ignored at first but it kept getting worse. I was able to report it to L&I."

Now WG has to file an L&I claim after the fact. He's going in to the shipyard to talk to human resources tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the head of my work, the tutor program, has called a meeting for 10:30 tomorrow. This will be our first ever meeting.

I have a feeling I know what it's about. I was reviewing the applications for next year's tutors this week. Today I was told to put that on hold. We won't be hiring new tutors for next year.

Yesterday, I read that economic indicators had improved. Companies were restocking their inventories. First quarter profits were better than expected. It is time for the economy to turn around, please.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
I guess intramural soccer is out.

The CT scan results: WG has a fractured sessamoid. Oh.

It's a soccer player's injury (though he probably got it at work). The fracture hasn't gone all the way through the bone which is why it wasn't clear on the X-ray. It looks like a knife cut across the base of the bone.

The little bone's about the size of a grape or maybe your thumbnail, on the ball of your foot right before the big toe. It's small, but important, because it's a flexor joint with the tendon of the big toe stretched across it.

The tendon kept pushing and sawing over the break which is why -- ow, ow, ow -- it hurt.

The tissue around the tendon had been tenderized and inflamed after months of walking on the fractured bone. Now that he's been off of it for two weeks, the inflammation has gone down.

Well. Kids break bones all the time. They heal. It'll just be a little slower for WG because he's not 12 anymore and it's an extremity.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
I credit all your good wishes: WG's limp is improving. My grades are not as bad as I feared. You must share your power of good wishes with the rest of the world, since clearly you could end both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

WG will learn the results of his CT and bone scans tomorrow.

I failed the Sanskrit final spectacularly, but based on the numbers here I must have been running close to a 3.8 - 3.9 before WG's injuries, so I'm saved from failing the class. I need to study those missed chapters this week or I'll be in trouble next quarter. Expect some Sanskrit posts this weekend.

My Greek History professor indeed graded harshly. I'm considering whether it's worth contesting the grade.

Who watches the Watchmen? We do!

Went to see Watchmen with WG tonight. We had our usual petty squabble on the way there. WG's a backseat driver which is why I make him my chauffeur. But it's not wise to have him drive with a walking cast. I ended up running red light after he insisted I'd missed the turn into the theater --

WG: Honey, honey! It's right there to the left, to the left--!
Icarus (baffled, looking around): What? What? It can't be, it's not--
(Vroom.)
Icarus: Driving with you sucks. Also, that traffic would have hit you first.

He was very conciliatory (he hates backseat drivers). I ruefully admitted I'd written down the address for the wrong theatre. We circled the block until we found it.

The Neptune in the U-District is old fashioned theatre, built 80 years ago, ) There were exactly three people in the theater so we... sat in the same row with them, thus proving humans are social creatures. Someone should do a doctoral study.

WG is Nite Owl. That was my guy up there.  )

Needless to say, I loved the movie (for other reasons as well). As a side note, we both enjoyed the tasteful frontal nudity. Good to see a movie that has just as much (or more) male nudity as female. Reading reviews from you guys, I noticed that most of the people who hated the movie hadn't read the comic, while most of those who loved the movie had. So I made sure we'd both read it first. In case I blunder into spoilers. ) It's visually stunning, but what made it were the actors. The actors were so well cast -- and this story is about the characters. Cast the right actors and you have 90% of it right there.

WG wants to see it again on DVD, so he can pause the opening montage and study the background details.

Afterward, he made a wistful comment about ice cream, so we hunted down an ice cream shop for sundaes and sat in the shop like 1950s teenagers. I'd brought my notebook and jotted down a scene for Out Of Bounds that hit me in there. After this post, I'm off to write it. *g*

If you want to shoplift, carry Sanskrit books. )

Now WG wants to do another date tomorrow night, this time an art film at the Varsity. Ah, old theatres. Such a different experience from the modern multiplexes.

WG update.

Mar. 17th, 2009 01:41 pm
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
To those of you who asked how WG is doing:

He's hobbling around in a walking cast. He goes in for a CT scan and a bone scan on Friday. In an ideal world they won't find anything and it'll just be sesamoiditus.

The root canal? It appears to be infected. He goes in on Thursday for oral surgery.

His back? A constant needle-like pain but nowhere near as bad as it was. Acupuncture was very effective.

He can't work, which in a way has taken a lot of the stress off of him. But at the moment, he's quite bored. Quote, "I feel like a prisoner."
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
State of the wisdom teeth

I have discovered I can eat brie.

All food issues are hereby resolved.


State of the never-ending apartment search

And... if it doesn't fall through... we might have found a new apartment.

It's not ideal, but it's nice. Hardwood floors, good location close to my school and WG's work, 1920s building, arched doorways, old fashioned built-in wooden cabinets all along the hall, tons of storage space, ceramic tile in kitchen and bath. The price is right and everything but electricity is included.

The minuses: it's ground floor, so it's too dark. We'll no longer have our treetop view. And I'd miss my gay neighborhood.

We shall see.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
This morning I woke up at 8 am. WG was still asleep next to me, looking delicate and sweet. Brushing his hair off his face didn't wake him, so I brushed his hair, sweeping it over the pillow. He made a soft sound, tipping his head into the brush.

I was fully awake but nuzzled back under the covers to spend more time with him.


Tooth-wise

Today was much better than yesterday, and yesterday was much better than the day of surgery which, by my estimation, managed to be three days long: comfortable but nervous day before surgery; zoned out day during surgery (and the trip home); and really grouchy and exhausted bloody day after the surgery. WG worked his tail off taking care of me.

You guys are the greatest. You treat us invalids well. *g*

1) All the fanfic recs I can shake a stick at.

2) Recipes for mashed potatoes (yay! food I can eat!).

3) Hilarious Drugged-up Rodney comment fic (there are cats involved).

Now all we need is the torrent for latest Stargate Atlantis to turn up. *reads more fanfic and refreshes mininova again*

Progress on Out Of Bounds? Uh....
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
All the politics I'm allowed right now

Two useful sites for your election needs:

http://www.factcheck.org/

Non-partisan, checks the facts on all the candidates.

http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/

Very thorough polling analysis. Methodology is explaimed here.


Wisdom teeth

Still down for the count. My wisdom teeth were pulled out Tuesday. It's been 48 hours. Feels like much, much longer.

Loved the recs, guys, thank you. Read some new fics and then when my concentration gave way, cruised by some old favorites.

WG has turned into Nurse Cratchett and disallowed all politics, though we have cut a deal on Out Of Bounds. Happy things. I am allowed happy things. For example, I'm allowed television and all the ice cream I can chew.

Since I had an impacted wisdom tooth (for about a year and a half -- er, high pain threshold?) I had the doctor put me out for the operation. I remember the first thing I told the doctor on waking, "It would be cute if a whole bunch of cats walked in here right now." I was picturing about four or five.

The nurse told WG that everything went very smoothly, they didn't even have to drill.

The doctor called to check on me yesterday morning. He asked, "Do you remember anything?"

I said, "Zilch."

He seemed amused and joked, "Well, don't let anyone come near you with any knives."

I take it that I must have woken up and had a strong opinion in the matter. There's a flea-sized nick on my lip that I can't place. Yes, that would be why I had them put me under. I only like knives if I'm the one holding them.


ETA: Whee! The ever hilarious [livejournal.com profile] mad_maudlin wrote Rodney, still high after surgery. John/Rodney, PG-13. Hee.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
The "ow" report, brought to you by the letter "Oh."

Hel-lo, doctors' appointments.

WG and I were supposed to see his family and then go whitewater rafting this weekend. Unfortunately he's had an ear ache since Sunday and it's persisted. Oh no. We went to the doctor yesterday and he's getting treatment, and has a follow-up appointment tomorrow. But ear ache + white water = bad idea, so we decided to cancel our trip, to the tune of $150 in fees to change our tickets. Ow.

Today I went to ze dentist to fix a filling that came out. It's almost under the gumline and the dentist started throwing around scary words like "root canal." Uh-oh. We're going to see what happens in the next six weeks. Next week: I get my wisdom teeth out.
icarus: Snape by mysterious artist (Default)
A little addition:

Top floor apartment (heat rises and how).
+ Brick oven building.
+ Western exposure.
+ Sunny, hot day.
+ Cat hiding in the (tile) bathroom, miserable.
+ A little late closing the drapes.
+ Computer by the window.
+ Half the day in over-airconditioned school.
= Yesterday.

I was at the computer and only felt a little warm. I was good, drinking water. Then... sudden wash fever, dizzy, had to lie down immediately. Kept drinking water as I woke up, but that was pretty much it.

We've measured the temps in the apartment on sunny summer afternoons. It does get between 90-100 even when it's only 80 outside. Normally I'm fine. But I bet this year's cool summer (until this week) plus spending all morning cold (long sleeves and we still froze at school) was not good.

I'm home from school today. Canceled one of my tutoring appointments although I can't reach my boss or the student for the other one.

I want to move. I want out of this tiny little brick oven. I want an apartment manager who doesn't leave tenants nasty notes. I want enough space for WG's backpacking stuff so that I'm not tripping over it. I want an apartment where we don't fry every summer. I want managers who don't turn off the heat on Christmas. I want room for a dresser. I want enough wall space for my books so they're no longer on the floor.

But right now, I'll settle for a milder headache, some Advil, and a glass of water.

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