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December 2012   01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
I'm speaking English.  The people I talk to are also speaking English.  So how come I feel like I'm talking in circles?? 

I have a professor for my computer class who has been doing this to me all semester.  He's an engineering type, and has this terribly frustrating way of trying to convey information that just doesn't make much sense to me.  But as soon as he demonstrates what he's talking about, I'm like, "ooooh, that's what you meant.  I knew that."  It makes me feel slightly idiotic when he asks questions during lecture, to see if we're following, and I just stare at him going, "guh?" because the way he's asked the question and presented the information doesn't follow.  I actually do know the material.  I do know what he's talking about...once I figure out what he's talking about! 

Don't get me started on my other professor...75% of our class dicussions consist of her telling us things, and us spending the next half hour trying to figure out if she means what we think she means, only to have her pull the rug out from under us and change her mind mid-stream. 

But it seems I'm having the same trouble with the ladydoc I went to last month.  I could have sworn she told me to come back for a follow-up appointment at the end of my first pill pack.  She made a statement along the lines of, "yeah, we're not just going to send you on your way with months and months of pills before we know how you respond to them."  She also specifically told me she was giving me one month's supply.  Seemed pretty clear-cut to me.  Except, what I guess she must have actually meant was that she was giving me one month's supply of actual pills, and a prescription good for two refills, and when the prescription was up, (not just the first pill pack), THAT'S when I was supposed to come back for follow-up.  Good lord.  It's a similar miscommunication to when I asked her what the difference was between the different kinds of pills and she said, "they're all the same."  I had meant, what's the difference between the different brands and formulas, and what she meant was, "all the active pills in this prescription have the same level of hormone in them."  I ended up having to google my questions and figure out what I wanted to know, at which point I was able to deconstruct the conversation and figure out how we'd been talking at cross-purposes.

It's as if my ability to read subtext and successfully convey my ideas in words has abandoned me.  I feel like I'm never on the same page with anyone anymore, and I don't know how it happened.  I is confuzzled.


Ch-Ch-Changes! (Turn and face the strange...)

Posted on 2012.11.14 at 21:43
Tags: ,

I got contact lenses!  I'm wearing 'em right now! 

I never had an interest in getting contacts for regular, everyday wear because I have astigmatism in both eyes and for years they simply didn't make a contact lens that could correct it (mostly--my optometrist says I'll always see better in glasses).  Plus, I love wearing glasses.  I've had brainy specs since the 3rd grade.  My eyes are really poor and I wear glasses all the time except when I'm sleeping.  They're part of my face, y'know?  Plus, they're a fun accessory that I don't have to feel guilty about spending money on because I need them.  I can make a statement with my specs.  They're great.

So what changed?  Put simply, I got tired of not being able to see on Halloween.  Unfortunately, a vast majority of the characters I've wanted to cosplay as don't wear glasses, so I'm forced to either be inaccurate to the costume, or be unable to drive.  Or not be able to see faces from ten paces away.  So I finally got tired of having to live with those subpar options and got myself a trial pair of soft disposable contacts.  And it is weeeiiirrrd.  I mean, they're comfortable and I can see pretty well in them, but I keep reaching to adjust the glasses that aren't on my face. 

I just keep thinking that because I can see I must be wearing glasses.  It's so strange to see my face without glasses when I'm awake and alert and presentable.  And to be able to see that without having my nose almost touching the mirror.  I've already got the hang of taking the things out, but getting them in is still a little complicated.  Especially for my left eye.  And tonight my eyes feel really dry, which is making me feel as though I'm wearing an older prescription.  I can see, but everything is just a little less clear.  Lots of eyedrops happening tonight.  And the whole stick-my-finger-in-my-eye-without-crying-and-blinking thing is a challenge.  But I'm psyched.  Invisible brainy specs! 

But that's not all!  I also became a responsible lady and got my ladyparts examined!  And now, I'm trying out hormonal birth control, something else I had thought wasn't my style.  I'm only on Day 2, so the jury's still out on whether The Pill actually is my style or not.  I'm just hoping it settles down my lady organs a little bit.  After 14 years of really predictable cycles my body went and changed the routine on me a few months ago and I couldn't figure out why.  The lady doc and nurse practitioner just kinda shrugged and went, "yeah, sometimes that stuff just changes" and gave me a script for generic Ortho-Cyclen.  So we shall see what develops.  Hopefully it won't send me to Hormonal Crazytown, or make me turn into a blubbery blimp.  Or explode my heart.  But I'm mostly concerned about the first two side-effects.  I hate mental PMS symptoms with a passion (I get anxious, with occasional, short-lived bursts of RAAAAGE) and generally enjoy an easy-going, chill demeanor.  And I've worked really hard over the past couple years to drop and keep off about 20 pounds that had made me really insecure about my body, so as long as the Pill doesn't screw with either of those two things, I think we can make this work for a while (unless it spikes my blood pressure or something).  

And I made both of these changes on THE SAME DAY.  Everything is shiny and strange.  I kinda like it.

THIS town, that's the sort.  Podunk little college town 45 minutes from ANYWHERE, Pennsylvania.  Harrumph.  My latex Spock ears from a few years ago have decayed into dehydrated squiggles of sadness and broken dreams, so I thought, "Perfect timing!  All the stores have Halloween stuff!  I'll just get another pair!"  Except THERE ARE NO OTHER PAIRS.  In fact, I couldn't find ANY sci-fi-related costume items in any of the stores.  None.  Zip.  But I did find all sorts of "sexy" costumes and costume accessories.  :/ 

So there's that.  The plus side?  If I were to blond-ify my hair, I could totally throw together something like this and go as Samantha Carter from Stargate:


  In fact, it could be an awesome guerilla-costume, because a lot of people probably wouldn't even realize I'd dressed up (though the hair would be a giveaway).  Once I thought of it, I was surprised that I hadn't thought of it sooner.  Sam Carter is awesome.  Question is, do I want to blond-up my hair?  I don't know if a temporary blond-ing would work very well, and it can be damaging to the follicles.  Plus, I just touched up my color a couple weeks ago.  Hmm.

This article.  How is this an acceptable blog post from a major news outlet?  Seriously, how?  Do we really need another article about a man pontificating (incorrectly) about the mystery of the hetero-normative female mind?  This reads like something a dude would say in his man-cave with his man-friends during a manly sporting event (see, I can be stereotypical and sexist,too!)  Really, this article isn't about what women want at all; it's about showcasing just how much this guy doesn't consider women to be actual people:

"Just as it is for many women in understanding what men want from them as they share roles as wives, moms and   workers, the balance required as a man in this modern age — whether in a president or partner — is equally difficult and confused.  One day, men will be comfortable blending Alan Alda and John Wayne into a new archetype integrating strong, kind gentle and protective in a way that has both integrity and modern chivalry.

When we as men get better at constructing that model, we’ll be giving women more of what they want as leaders and as men."

"Again, this is just the humble opinion of one man (and I emphasize man) who grew up with four sisters, has a daughter, two ex-wives and three sons who have dated a broad variety of women."

Pssh.  This guy isn't even a proper Womanologist, how could I possibly expect him to understand my mysterious lady ways?  You want to know what women want in a President?  How about fucking asking some women, then?  How about considering that most women (like most men) are intelligent and care about issues and policies every bit as much as men do, and DO NOT, in fact, make all their decisions with their ovaries?  I may not have four sisters, any daughters OR ex wives, but I AM a woman, and here's MY humble opinion: women are not a monolithic unit that ascribe uniformly to 1950s hetero-normative gender roles, and I find it incredibly insulting and disheartening that the theoretical contribution of HALF the voters in this democracy would be reduced to whether we prefer Alan Alda or John Wayne (wtf kind of examples are they, anyway?!). 

My god.  I just...flames.  Flames on the side of my face.  Is ABC trolling us with this nonsense?


Just Gotta Get It Done.

Posted on 2012.09.25 at 15:30
I'mma be honest here: I don't wanna write a thesis.  I never really wanted to write a thesis, and now that it's THE thing standing between me and my next degree, I REALLY don't wanna write it.  But I have to.  I am NOT quitting this program; it's cost me too much money, and it would cost me even more self-respect.  So this is happening.  I'm doing it. 

I just need to do it, though.  I don't have a private office to work in anymore, but I've also been given an assistant to help me.  I feel like I have an audience, and that I'm inconveniencing my assistant (who is actually the one getting paid to be in my old office) anytime I go to work there.  That's my problem, I know, but bottom line is, I'm getting waaaaay too distracted.  I think I need to start transitioning to some kind of sneaky late night / weekend schedule so I can work when no one's around. I might start trying that, because I need to start making headway with this thesis if I ever want to get out of here with a degree and a career. 

I know too many people who stalled at school and were never able to find the time or the money to get back to it, and I desperately don't want to end up in that camp.  On the other hand, I just don't seem to be motivated enough to get things done in a timely fashion.  I think part of my trouble is that I'm enjoying my life out here so much that part of me is going to be really, really sad when this chapter is over and I have to go somewhere else and make new friends and reestablish myself all over again.  :-/  (Which is an exciting option, actually, but leaves me feeling insecure and a little bit hollow right now.)

In other news: remember when I used to post about Doctor Who all the time?  What happened to those days?


Found Better Headspace.

Posted on 2012.09.03 at 09:58
Tags: , ,
Well, there's been a good bit of angst around this journal lately, hasn't there?  Blargh.  I hate angst.  It's distracting.  Fortunately, I'm mostly over it now, I think.  For the time being, anyway.  ;)  Not worried so much.  Reconnecting with good friends you can trust is a great salve, makes it much easier to deal with those parts of your social life that are up in the air.  A little bit of reassurance goes a long way.  :)  It also helps to get more experience dealing with people.  You learn how to handle uncertainty and learn the difference between things like indifference and rejection.  It also helps you sort out what you want from interactions with people. 

I cannot overstate how important it's been for me to have these couple of years of independence.  It's just been mind-bogglingly good for my brain and my spirit.  I had long figured that I needed time alone, to get to know myself, and I was right.  I have the confidence now to step out and try new things, to connect with other people in ways I'd never have dared to before.  I've gotten out of my bubble, I'm seeing where other people are coming from and figuring out where I can fit.  It has been a slow process.  A slooooooooow process, but I'm grateful for that.  It's given me time to adjust to the changes and get comfortable with them.  I'm not done, yet.  I don't think I'll ever NOT be a neurotic mess about some things, but I think that's a good thing, keeps me safer.  I love my neurotic tendencies.  The key is, I've learned how to trust myself.  I've also embraced my oddities and learned to see the slightly unusual way that I interact with people as a good thing.  I've met enough people in enough situations to know that most of the time, I get along just fine, and my oddball qualities are interesting.  I can use that to my advantage.  I can be perfectly normative without having to be normal.  It's all just a matter of practice, is the crazy thing.  I think a lot of people go through life thinking that social interactions are just supposed to be natural and organic.  The urge to socialize is indeed natural and organic.  But being successful at it takes a LOT of practice.  You have to put yourself out there, be willing to screw up, to make bad judgment calls from time to time, and be able to learn from that without getting emotionally scarred.

I'll be 28 years old in December, and I finally feel like I'm becoming the person I've always wanted to be.  Better late than never, amirite?


Things and stuff.

Posted on 2012.08.28 at 16:42
Tags: ,
Welp, schoooooool started back up today, so I suppose I'll probably get scarce around here again.  (Not that I ever really got not-scarce over the summer, but it's the thought that counts?  Maybe?)  I've just done something I've never done before: become a not-full-time student.  I realized today, as I sat through an undergrad-laden lecture at 3:00 in the afternoon, that I had much more important things to do with my time.  Like my thesis.  I need to do my thesis.  I had planned to take credit hours for my thesis this semester, but I never got the edits made to my research proposal that I had (foolishly) planned to do over the summer (when I was werkin' full time), so instead I had this filler class that I'd signed up for.  Well, goodbye filler class.  I don't want it, and I don't particularly need it.  It's...how do you say?...not relevant to my interests.  It's really not.  As much as the subject matter is interesting, and as excited and engaging as the professor is, it's crunch time.  Academic triage, if you will.  So, after making several phone calls to check that my financial aid won't Go Horribly Wrong, I have dropped the filler class and become a half-time enrolled student.  But I'll be working my butt off on my thesis, and now have more time to do it.  It's for the best.

Oh!  In other news, 

R.I.P., Neil Armstrong, geek extraordinare and first man on the moon, who passed away this Saturday, aged 82.  

Sic itur ad astra.  (Thus one goes to the stars.)

">Looking back, we were really very privileged to live in that thin slice of history where we changed how man looks at himself and what he might become and where he might go."  -Neil Armstrong


Today I'm Going to Talk About...Underwear! Oh Yeah!

Posted on 2012.08.11 at 18:28
Tags: ,
 So, I'm a female person.  And as a female person, I have these anatomical features colloquially known as "boobies."  In fact, I have rather sizable boobies and always have, which was a source of awkwardness and shame for me throughout my growing-up-as-a-lady years.  (Short explanation: I was taught that boobies and cleavage are sinful and will Get You Raped, plus I had always wanted to be a boy anyhow.) Because of that awkwardness and shame, I never took the time to learn how to properly size myself for supportive undergarments.  My only goal was "I must hide them!  Hide them under as much fabric as possible!" because I was sorta kinda in denial about my having ladyparts at all, which probably just manifested to the rest of the world as a case of "wow, that girl does NOT know how to dress herself."  Not only did I let my mom buy me most of my bras, I also acquired them as hand-me-downs from aunts and grandmothers.  Thus it was that I entered my mid-and late-twenties with an underwear drawer full of worn out, hilariously modest and bafflingly ill-fitting bras.  I had a band size and cup size that I knew, and that was what I always got.  I never even tried them on before I bought them.  

Around that same time, however, I got my head out from under a rock and began to come to terms with my ladyness and booby-having.  I've since come around to kinda sorta liking that I'm a female person, and realizing that there are certain advantages to having a curvy figure.  I have also realized that getting the proper bra fit is every bit if not more complicated and error-prone as getting the proper fit in ANY piece of female-intended clothing.  But by the same token, finally finding a bra that fits opens up a whole new world of awesome!  For the first time in my life, I went to get professionally fitted for a bra today, and then spent the next couple of hours going from department store to department store and trying things on.  It's amazing how wrong I had the size thing.  For almost as long as I can remember having boobies, I harnessed them into 36 or 38 Cs.  I was a C cup.  Boom, end of story.  But no!  I've been getting into shape the past few years, and my clothing sizes have all changed.  And it turns out that cup sizes are not absolute, but rather a way of categorizing the proportional size difference between bust and ribcage.  My boobs have gotten smaller, yet I'm now living the sweet life with a pair of 34 DD/Es strapped to my chest.  I made the classic American woman mistake of having too large a band size, and too small a cup size.  

So, ladies of livejournal, I urge you: check your bra size.  Check it often, and get it checked professionally just to be sure.  Then try things on.  Try many things on.  I am standing straight, shoulders back and proud for the first time in years without fear of my boobies.  And they look good, to boot!  (The annoying thing is, I suspect my new bras still aren't entirely the right size, but you try finding 32DD in any department store anywhere.  I went to three places today, and found exactly one acceptable 34DD in each location.  Small bands + large cups are not a common fixture in most places, it seems!)


Social Life-ing, and the Pitfalls Thereof

Posted on 2012.07.22 at 14:40
I'm working on an archaeological survey crew this summer, so I've been spending the vast majority of my time with my crew mates.  We work together, travel together, eat together, we've even bunked together for projects.  A lot of togetherness.  And I've gotten to spend the last couple of weekends at home, visiting with my immediate family and grandparents and old friends from high school and college, not to mention the couple of weddings I've had in the past month that have provided even more social opportunities.  I'm having a great time.  In fact, there's only problem...I've forgotten how to be alone.  I'm here in my apartment, alone for the first time in nearly two weeks, and the only thing I want to do is find out who else is in town and go and do something.  Being alone is boring.  It's not fulfilling.  It makes me feel like I'm friendless and isolated.  Obviously, that's not true.  Clearly, I have a blessed life full of wonderful people that I like, and who like me.  Given some time to myself, I'm sure I'll remember what it is about solitude that I love so much.  I know I could use some.  I suspect the mild bout of hives I have right now is stress-related (unless it's new-allergy related, which is possible).  Ugh.  I hate being randomly transformed into a social butterfly.  It confuses me.  

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