Slamming on the brakes as needed

This morning on the podcast, I was talking about how fast the month has gone by and then here it is another late afternoon and I’m back at the kitchen table just like that. POW! Right here! What did I accomplish today? Not a great deal aside from getting the flu shot and getting gas in the Spark. Aside from that, it’s not been much of a day.

I’m all caught up at work but I’ve done nothing with the time that frees up for me, just mindless iPad surfing, app to app, refresh the Tweets, look for funny things to share on Tik Tok. Hours can be lost pointlessly roaming around in cyberspace each week.

That’s why I had to slam on the brakes a bit ago and get away from the iPad and get back to the kitchen where it’s brighter and there are other things to do aside from letting myself slip into the near slumber of distraction.

I have to stay on track but I don’t because it’s too easy to slip back into doing nothing.

It’s too easy to let the internet do the work for me and live vicariously through what everyone else is doing or what everyone else wants us to think they are doing.

I don’t want to waste tons of time each week but I also don’t want to overdo it which I have done in the past. My mind can go nuts with ideas of what to create and if not something new, how to tweak something old and it would be far more productive to sit out in the sunshine with my eyes closed for 15 minutes if there was truly nothing to do for a bit.

Just not fooling with the theme on this site you are looking at right now over the last month (that’s right – this site is one month old today!) has been a major accomplishment. It’s one of those things I would have obsessed over in the past just so I can block myself from doing anything productive here.

Self-sabotage, anyone? I’m sure I’ve got some stored up around here somewhere. I’m trying to no longer partake of it myself. Trying trying trying.

Welcome to Fall, aka COVID Season 7

This would be the 8th season of COVID but most people didn’t pay attention as news of something weird going on leaked out of China during the winter of 2019-2020 so instead we celebrate the first day of Fall here as the first day of COVID Season 7 also. Exciting! COVID is so glad to still be occupying most of the hospital beds in America while our minds turn to Halloween candy and Thanksgiving turkey.

It’s a crisp start to the season here as the temperature is about fifteen cooler today than it has been and we will dip into the 40’s tonight for the first time in months. Brrrr? Nah.

For the past few years, I have been busy with marching band each summer and fall but this year I am not but the “slowdown” in time I expected has not materialized. The weeks seem to fly by even faster now because I have nothing to dread. Maybe dread slows time? I dreaded nights and days dealing with loading and unloading the truck and moving instruments and assembling props. Now I do a lot more sitting in front of the television and time is just flying by. Summer is over? It’s September 22nd? How did this happen?

Fall brings with it so many things. We can drink pumpkin drinks without shame. Potpourri suddenly smells good. Cracking open a window on a 50 degree morning is refreshing. There is a shift in what I want to create back toward words on a page (virtual, preferably) for some reason.

The clouds move across the sun creating all sorts of different light as the days get shorter and my mind goes back to the line Nora Ephron wrote about fall in You’ve Got Mail:

“Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.”

Nora Ephron

COVID negative

I don’t have much of an update today aside from A) I’m feeling better than I have in several days and B) My COVID test from yesterday was negative so it appears I’m back to my ragweed-related season allergy funk. This is surprising to me since I thought the only illness left was COVID and everything was gone. Plus, I don’t remember having any allergy problems last fall but maybe I just assumed every sniffle was possible COVID and I just went to bed each time versus this year when I am out and about doing some stuff, not all the things, but some of the things.

Will we ever go back to 2019 normal? I may not.

In trying to get back to normal, community band starts back up tomorrow with masks and social distancing and a smaller group than last spring so we will see how all of that works out. It will be nice to be playing music again.

Here’s a WordPress stock photo that came up for the word normal and yep, that’s about right.:

Photo by Sorapong Chaipanya on

Mindless Saturday

We have a rainy few days ahead until Thursday when it will supposedly be dry. It’s like the rain and dreary days just came out of nowhere or maybe I’m not paying as much attention to the weather now that I don’t have to be out in it on Friday and Saturday nights.

I’ve also developed a bit of an annoying cough with plenty of drainage so I scheduled a rapid test for good ‘ol COVID over at the clinic this afternoon. Follow along on Twitter for the results! I love being swabbed! When they come in with the swab, I think I’ll drop my pants and bend over just to see what happens.

In chicken news, let me get up and see if they are out at the moment. Be right back.

Sorry that took so long. The chickens were not out but then I got distracted and cleaned off my side of the bathroom counter and dusted some items in the bedroom. I HATE dusting. Dust should be outlawed or universally accepted and left alone. Anything that allows me freedom from dusting.

Oh, no. The family is back from Walmart so now I will get sucked into bringing in groceries. Even possible COVID does not relieve me from grocery duty.

Friday in Armpit

It’s Friday – again.

I don’t know why but the weekend seems to arrive faster now. Maybe it’s because I don’t have marching band activities on Friday and Saturday anymore so every day ends up being sort of the same and then the weekend comes and disrupts my sleep cycle and then, POW, it’s Monday again.

In news from Armpit, my Cuban neighbor is outside this morning building a chicken wire fence around his entire yard so he can have chickens wandering around. I don’t believe this is legal but what do I know. He also has patio furniture he built out of pallets, the old combo shower and bath he pulled from his house in his backyard now acting as a planter and a giant portable building he put between our two houses that seems to act as his own private workout gym and bar.

Other people in the neighborhood seem to be unhappy about all of this. They were all standing in their front yards last night watching him install fence posts as chickens followed him around. I am a weird person and I enjoy the unexpected so this is right down my alley so I won’t be complaining or gossiping with anyone about this. I will just sit back and watch.

But what about my property value, you might ask, and I say there is nothing this guy could do to lower my property value. My house is worth far more than I owe because the housing market here is insane. My neighbor could put in a missile silo and I would still double my money if I sold. But I have no need or urge to sell and I find that watching chickens is sort of peaceful.

In organization news, I have loaded the car with another round of donations for our local help center. These are items that fell in the “haven’t used them in 6 months so they can go” category so I am getting down to the essentials now. It’s refreshing to look in the attic or closets and see so much space and since I am not going to the help center until tomorrow, more items might go out the door today.

Finally, here is one of the free WordPress photos from the keyword search Chicken:

Photo by Alexandr Podvalny on

The snob is in

It’s Wednesday night and I’m stuffy (just allergy/sinus stuffy, not COVID end of days stuffy) and I am on the couch in the living room with the Chromebook and I have nothing to watch on television since I deleted my entire YouTube TV queue last night.

This has nothing to do with this post although Halloween will be here before we know it!

I also checked in the book I was reading which is or recently was a bestseller, People We Meet on Vacation. I don’t know why I try mainstream books but every once and a while (typically, each summer) I get curious and the result is always the same. I get about 30 percent into the book and surrender, checking it back in early for the next sufferer.

In all probability, the next person will like the book but it reminds me of Harlan Ellison talking to Tom Snyder about books (and television shows) written for the masses just to keep us all dumbed down because every popular work has to be accessible to everyone, lowest common denominator, etc. etc.

Does this make me a book/television snob? Probably.

I don’t watch much television but I am enjoying Only Murders in the Building on Hulu. In fact, that’s the only show I am watching regularly these days although I also am back into college football which is some quite enjoyable, non-thinking entertainment for me.

And, I went back into my library to read list and checked out The Fran Lebowitz Reader which I am really enjoying.

I guess that’s it. Another rainy Wednesday is in the books.

Is ignorance bliss?

I was back at work today and had less time to think about how screwed up our society is so yeah, it’s good to be distracted!

What all is screwed up?

How about people protesting hospitals about vaccines, which makes no sense when the hospital is the place that will try to save your life if you get COVID and are not vaccinated?

How about another stupid rally in Washington D.C. this Saturday to celebrate the stupid rally which led to an act of domestic terrorism back in January? How does Trump get away with everything he gets away with? Oh, yeah – he told us he would back in 2016 when he said this on the campaign trail in Iowa:

“I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn’t lose any voters, OK?” Trump remarked at a campaign stop at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa. “It’s, like, incredible.”

Ah. Hmm. Yeah.

And the craziness continues to build because A) more people are joining the crazies and B) the crazies are getting louder and seemingly more powerful.

If we shut all of this out by watching the correct newscasts and muting out a lot of people on social media, we can get a false sense that everything is fine and it’s quite dangerous to be looking the other way.

Why? Here’s one example of why we need to pay attention –

People Overload

The anxiety level is high this evening which I find surprising since I am about to start week two on the maximum dosage of the happy pills but maybe that is the problem. Maybe it’s just too much? Maybe the happy gauge hit max and bounced back down to 1/2? I don’t know. Or maybe it’s just people overload. Or staycation overload.

I typed “anxiety” into the free WordPress stock photos function and this is the first image that came up. I don’t believe he looks too anxious puffing up. Lung cancer? Nah, these things are good for me!

Photo by Anfisa Eremina on

It feels weird to be off schedule after a while and that could be a part of it. Tomorrow, structure returns as I head back to work. And next week, community band fires up again so I’ll finally be back in a band-related activity. Having no band-related activities from July until now has been quite weird and I don’t believe I have found my groove on how to properly fill that free time. I’m a bit all of the place.

On vacation week

there may not be as much activity here, I am finding out.

First of all, no ideas of things I want to write about are popping into my mind. Second, I seem to be busier than I expected. For example, today was FULL. It seems like we were going full steam from waking up until now and now it’s 9:15PM and I’m finally on the couch in from of the football game.

Where did the day go? I don’t know. Just like Leroy and Leroy say, “There’s always something to do!”

Being kind to future me

As I noted in the previous post, we watched a movie last night and this was during the time I normally get a few things on the to do list done.

After the movie, I had a choice to make. Either get those things done or leave them for future me to do the next morning. I chose to get up and get those things done.

I guess the voice of future me was already yelling at current me for even thinking of postponing these things and making this morning even busier than normal.

As I get older, I try to be more considerate of future me.