It All Feels Like A Lot Right Now

Calvin, Hobbes, and a wagon, yelling as they careen over a cliff.

It’s been a bit. So a bunch of updates, in no particular order:

Thank Fuck, Class is Done

I just finished a YA Materials class that, in total, was a waste of time. I would have been better off with a reading list and a few guiding questions or an essay assignment. I think the teacher actually made things worse than if we’d just been left with a well-organized packet of readings and assignments. I spent way too many hours putting together a the pile of busywork that was the final project, which you can check out here if you really want to: https://info265dec2017final.wordpress.com/.

Who Needs Stability, Anyway?

I’ve had it confirmed for certain that I’m not getting another year-long contract with my current employer next year, which makes sense as the hardware I ostensibly maintain is being phased out almost completely in January. However, the last several months I’ve been working in on-call work for a different department, and I’ve been doing pretty well at that, so I had the impression there might be some hope there. Alas, it was not to be, apparently. I might get some piecemeal work in January or at other times as they tear down datacenters, but I’m not really expecting anything.

I’ve been wanting to move on from that job for a while, but I’ve always struggled in the job search. At least now I’ll have a handful of recent and good references to work with. Still, I’m not relishing the idea of looking for a new job, especially given that things will be getting pretty rough after about three months. It’s downright panic-inducing if I think about it too much. Or close to it. Eugh.

But hey, if you need any tech, writing, or game design help, maybe throw an e-mail my way? I can line-edit, too! And tap dance, if you have some very nonstandard needs.

I also got slugged with a bill for income tax owed from 2015 from…California? Which doesn’t make any sense, I haven’t lived there since 2013 and the only time I even did work for my company in SF was in 2016, and that was just a few days. So I get to wrestle with that, but Django recommended a wonderful tax consultant and I’m getting copies of paperwork that was supposedly sent to me that I’ve never seen, so hopefully we can get it worked out and the tax canceled. If not, I guess I get to have a blown emergency fund in addition to not having a job at the start of next year. :\

Whee!

The Games We Play

By which I mean literal video games. I’ve been playing snatches of Stardew Valley and the original Fallout. But mostly PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. PubG PubG PubG PubG PubGeeeeee! If anyone wants to play, I’d love to get a duo or a squad going. Hit me up.

Time for Braining

With class ending, I might have time to think about stuff again. And work on projects. Shivering Deeps fell behind, AGAIN, so it’d be good to get some steam going on that. Especially given I was hoping to be much further by this time this year. It’s just taken so long. But I don’t want to give up now! *determined anime protagonist fist*

I’ve also been doing some thinking about trying to create an alternative to Patreon. Maybe even a B corp or a nonprofit or something. Of course, my web coding skills need to improve, so I’m thinking I’ll try to give myself a crash course in Ruby and then start prototyping. Between when I started typing this on Tuesday and now they’ve rolled back the fee structure! So now it’s less urgent. Still planning on learning Ruby, though. And looking into what it would take to do a co-op local ISP as an alternative to Comcast and Centurylink if net neutrality gets fully gutted.

Ergonomics

I started getting symptoms of repetitive stress injuries and/or carpal tunnel syndrome, so I started looking really hard at the ergonomics of y workspace. I have a new keyboard that’s far more comfortable, and that seems to have solved most of it. I just wish I had two of them so I stopped needing to hook it back up to my desktop whenever I get home.

A desktop with a two-piece ergonomic keyboard on top.

I also got a new chair, but it’s still sitting in its box, pending room cleanup so it can be assembled in place instead of getting carried up the stairs. I need a keyboard tray at some point, too.

Pets

An image of Jerry the leopard gecko looking down into a shallow steel dish of roaches and powder.

Jerry’s doing good! He continues to be a perfect gecko noodle boy. <3

Jabberwocky’s been having a tough time of it. As far as we know, she’s not sick, but she’s been acting really anxious and keeps trying to get out of her enclosure, even immediately after being let out to explore. So she’s either a) trying to kill me, or b) (much more likely) stressed out by something and her enclosure’s not meeting that need. We’re adding enrichment stuff, but there’s the possibility that she’s feeling sick or carrying eggs, given her elevated calcium levels last time I brought her in. Taking her in tomorrow to see what’s going on, and hopefully get an answer. I would like a (relatively) calm iguana, please. ;_; Good thoughts for her appreciated. <3

Mental Health

Has been pretty garbage! I think I’m crashing hard after the stress of that final project. I’ve been really tired for the last couple days, even more so than I usually am. I also am probably struggling with seasonal affective disorder stuff. Dear Seattle: why you gotta be so dark? Hoping to improve as the job search gets under way (so I feel like I’m at least doing something),  and once I get a better picture of my financial situation going into next year (so once that tax thing resolves either way).

A sunset with trees and houses shilouetted in the foreground.

Conclusion

I guess that’s it! Sorry for being a downer, y’all. I hope to have better news for you in the next update!

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