Tuesday, August 24, 2004

wp plugin stuff

trying out some wp plugins. this one may be semi-interesting and in time i can learn to do the image manipulation to change the icons around.

this one is pissing me off pretty bad: it gorks the wordpress login functionality for some reason.

email madness

my hosting provider has disabled the sending of mail from php scripts except under very limited circumstances that don't mesh well with wordpress. this means that wordpress will no longer be able to send me an email when you post something. as a consequence, today i'll be implementing a plug-in that closes off posting to old entries after a few days. three to five feels about right.

comment boxes

an update: i've restored the original configuration. sorry to all you ie users: ie has a bug in it where it doesn't properly restore css configurations to default in certain situations, resulting in incorrect display of my textbox. this is a combination bug in ie and wordpress, and the wp folks haven't worked around it yet. blame redmond.

the comment box is semi-fixed. it still doesn't work quite right in internet explorer, but at least it doesn't hide the last bit of the line of your comment. also, the fix fucks up the display of comment lines in both ie and firebird, and i'm most unhappy with it. this is caused by an internet explorer bug that will likely never be fixed.

i dunno what i'm going to do with all this. it's a -huge- hassle. maybe i'll go back to the way it was and simply remind internet explorer users that there are better alternatives.

Monday, August 23, 2004

cec's stuff

i decided some time ago that, because i can't do threaded replies on wordpress that i wouldn't reply to posts here; instead, i'll do a new post. this is important in situations where i might want to reply to a particular comment, like cecily's from this one.

> I love the new look, btw, but this comments
> block isn’t lit up all the way, and I can’t see
> thelast three words of any line–hence the typos…

Fuzzballz. I suspect this is one of those non-standard behaviors induced by microsoft's embrace-and-extend practices. obviously, since firefox renders correctly and ie does not, and most open-source stuff is not deliberately written to break ie (because open-source stuff tends to be written to standards that microsoft chooses to ignore).

i'll be in touch with the author of the theme to see what can be done.

> And don’t give up on meetings–have
> you thought about maybe trying some
> meetings outside of your intergroup? Maybe?

in practice this is less practical than going to meetings at all, which is well neigh impossible with three tiny kids like i have, plus full-time school. the area my intergroup serves is vast; 17 counties with automatic extension policies. i'd either have to drive to waco (80+ miles) or dallas (about the same in terms of time investment as waco). switching intergroup service areas simply isn't practical.

i haven't given up but i'm less enthused about going than i was. i don't get a lot out of them anymore, and i don't have a lot of time to spend at them anymore either. i've wound up getting myself a head shrinker but the insurance has made the setup virtually useless. at $30 per visit, i'm going only once every two weeks and i doubt i can keep that up for more than another visit or two. the money simply isn't there.

i've also always had sponsor trouble. the one who helped me the most, back in the day, when i did my very first fourth step, burned me really bad not once but twice, when she dropped me claiming her doctor had ordered her to drop everybody she sponsored because of her blood pressure. (what tha?) since then, i haven't had a steady sponsor: they move, i move, or (as has happened a couple of times) they get drunk.

the longer i stay sober the harder it becomes, as well. i've always had trust issues with men and have never found a male sponsor i'm really comfortable with. all of my best work has been done with women (for some reason, really short, really fat women). i know all the standard reasons why i should have a male sponsor, but the truth is that i don't do as well with them, and have a harder time being honest with them. and all of the women sponsors i've had have been able to deal with, well, the cruder edges of maleness that i display on occasion, understanding that it's part of the game, i suppose.

so that leaves me stuck, in large measure.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

more points

i added two more paragraphs to my homeschool pros/cons letter.

PS Con: Grades are usually used by children as a social status indicator, not as the guide to learning and achievement they are supposedly intended for. They sort themselves into “smart kids,� “average kids,� and “dumb kids.� Even if your child is very intelligent, if, for whatever reason, your child has poor grades (see boredom above), the situation can make her feel like she’s stupid or a failure, even when she’s not. In a home school situation, you will have the opportunity to help your child understands what the numbers mean in a meaningful way.

HS Pro: Family time. Home schooling forces you to spend time as a family, something that many people feel is sorely missing from today’s working family life.

homeschool considerations

i wrote what amounts to an essay pro/con on homeschooling. i did it primarily because i wanted to clarify in my own mind some things i've been thinking on the subject, and so herewith i record them for public consumption. in the unlikely event someone comments, well, so much the better.

the background: i was prompted to write this by a post to a mailing list i'm on, and so it's phrased as a response to her. you've been warned.


Your email prompted me to sit down and write in detail some stuff that I’ve been rolling around in my mind over the past few months about home schooling. Much of this may not be useful to you, and that’s okay. You only prompted me to write it, but I’ve really written it for myself and my wife. [By the way: I write like a lawyer. It’s a common complaint and I can’t do anything about it now.]

Our background: My wife was raised Catholic; I myself am Jewish, and we have chosen to raise our children as Jewish. They are 2, and twins age 1. (They are boy, Ian, a girl, Samantha, and a boy, Benjamin.) I’ll spare you our school life stories, but suffice it to say that I’m considering home schooling for our children based in part on my desires for their education, and on my experiences in my own education.

The folks in on HS Friends have suggested that I focus on the positives of home schooling, and while that suggestion makes sense, I find that it’s important to also look at the positives and negatives of public schooling, as well as potential negatives of home schooling. For me, any other approach means that I can’t make a fully-informed decision.

One of the most important things I’ve realized is that, while whatever choices I make will have a profound effect on my kids, obviously, they are reversible. If it turns out that home schooling isn’t right for my family, we can always go back to public school. And if it turns out that public school is a miserable experience, I can always withdraw my kids and bring them home.

So, here’s my list of considerations, many of which overlap for obvious reasons. Where these will fall in your scale of importance will vary, and where they fall in my scale depends on exactly when you ask me.

Public school pros:

- There is a large population of students in most public schools in our area. This means that your child will have a large group of kids from whom to choose friends, and will have plenty of social opportunities.
- Public schools have a large selection of extracurricular activities that home schools frequently lack, like bands and organized team sports.
- Commercial support systems, like after-school daycare, are geared to the schedules of public and private schools, not to home schoolers. This means that if your children are too young to be left alone, you will have an easier time finding daycare if they are in public or private school.

Public school cons (there are many):
- Public schools are very good at catering to the needs of about the middle 70-80% of students. If, however, your child is either extremely intelligent (top 10-20%) or has some sort of learning disability (bottom 10-20%), the public school system will have a hard time teaching your child and keeping him interested in what’s going on. If your child loses interest, your child could become a victim of depression from boredom, or depression from difficulty in learning. Both of these can result in poor grades (even if your child is really smart!), which can in turn lead to more depression and failure.
- Public school curricula use a state-formulated one-size-fits-all approach. If your child finds herself excelling in reading and having a hard time in math, the public school system may be unable to readily compensate while keeping the rest of your student’s studies at level. Also, if you find that you want your children taught (or not taught) about such subjects as creationism and birth control, you may find you’ll be unhappy with the public school approach, meaning you’ll have to figure out how to teach your child what you want them to learn without making their lives more miserable.
- Public schools are driven by standardized test scores, and have been for many years. These scores appear to be a stick used to beat school administrators, which is in turn used to beat teachers, who in turn endlessly drill students to the objectives of the exam. This means that students spend an inordinately large amount of time drilling for the test rather than learning new material. While it’s true that you shouldn’t get a high school diploma if you can’t pass these tests, it’s also true that the tests look for baseline minimum, not the level we want our kids to learn at.
- You won’t have control over the social interactions your child is exposed to. If your school is filled with little kids you wouldn’t permit in your neighborhood if you had a choice, that’s too bad. And telling your child to stay away from those kids only goes so far. You will have to un-teach the back alley education your child receives from these peers.
- You are largely constrained by your public school’s schedule for your family schedule. For example, if you want to attend a family wedding in February, you must hope that the wedding is scheduled in such a way as to accommodate school, and that you can get travel arrangements that fit as well. Otherwise, you could be harassed by truancy officers and your child could be disciplined for “unexcused� absences. In addition, your child will miss that school time and possibly fall behind.
- If you are of a religious persuasion (read non-Christian) that requires its adherents to dress in an unusual manner (like head scarves for Muslims or skull caps for Jews), your child could be subject to harassment by students for dressing oddly, and by the administration for contravention of school rules (such as the “no hats� rule). Even if you’re not of a religious persuasion subject to this kind of harassment, your child may witness (or even participate in) such situations despite your own convictions of equality and justice.
- Every public school has its cadre of bullies. Your child may become one of their victims, and the administration may not care. (Lawsuits over equal educational opportunity have been spawned by bullying and administrations not taking action about it.)
- Whether you have a boy or a girl, your child may be sexually harassed by other students (or, much more rarely, by an instructor). Again, administrations may or may not notice or care.
- If you find yourself unhappy with the curriculum your child is learning from, your only option will be to try to supplement with your own teaching. That’s all well and good, but you must then figure out how to get your child to be interested in it. If you force your child into additional learning she doesn’t want to be a part of (after being dragged through school all day long), you may engender resentment and dislike of learning.

Pros of home schooling:

Many of these reverse the cons of public schooling. Generally, the pros boil down to control over curriculum, schedule, and environment.

- You can cater your home schooling environment to your child. Does your child like history? Why not use historical novels as reading texts? Why not learn mathematics in the context of history, or study the history of mathematics? If your child is slower at math and faster at reading, you can progress at your child’s pace in both subjects, even if it means that she reads at 6th grade and does math at 4th grade. A public school can not offer this individual attention.
- The curricula you select will fit your needs, and those of your child. Do you want to use a religious instruction set? That’s available. Would you prefer something secular? That’s available as well. What about a combination of learning styles? With home schooling, exactly what you do is up to you.
- Your child will not be required to take standardized tests. This means that a big stress in kids’ lives is eliminated. You can focus on quality of learning, rather than on filling in the little bubbles.
- You have more control over your child’s social interactions. Simply by virtue of choosing to take her (or not take her) to a given place, you can restrict your child’s interactions with undesirable influences. While it’s important to help your child understand what’s really out there in the world, you can also control your child’s exposure to the less savory parts of the universe so that you can guide her through the experience.
- You can wear what you want, from jeans and a t-shirt with a political statement to a burkah to complete nudism if that’s what you prefer.
- Your child’s learning experience won’t be distracted by bullies and meaningless social nonsense.
- Sexual harassment at home is generally not a problem. And you can guide your child through the sexual maturation process in a protected, supportive environment to help her make it through a difficult, sometimes scary time in life.
- If you find yourself unhappy with the curriculum your child is learning from, the authority to change it is yours. If you think a different learning approach is appropriate (like switching from classical to Montessori) you are free to try it.
- You choose the schedule. If it works for your family to start school at 1:00 p.m., that’s up to you. If you want to take two hours off in the middle of the day for a social activity, that’s perfectly reasonable. Studies have shown that teens do better if they’re permitted to sleep later in the day; if your child is this way, you can let her sleep until 10 or 11 am and nobody will mind. Even if your school time runs until 7 or 8 pm, that’s perfectly acceptable. No public school would be caught dead operating at 8 pm.

Cons of home schooling:
- Home schooling can be difficult if both parents work. While not impossible, it can lead to challenges in childcare if both parents must be at work at the same time. This is especially difficult if you both must be away during the day; it may be hard to find childcare for a school-aged child during school hours.
- Discipline is required to make sure that you actually spend time doing learning. You are the teacher, so you are responsible for making sure that your child actually progresses in an appropriate manner.
- You may be subject to harassment by family, friends, neighbors, or legal authority who disagree with your decision to home school your children. While the law on home schooling in Texas is clear, many people (including Child Protective Services case workers) frequently don’t know it.

I’d be pleased to hear what other items you think about in any category.

Friday, August 20, 2004

the layout

okay, new layout i picked up and hacked up from the bomb site. this one is obviously the mars one. i really like it. i had to dick with the index.php and wp-layout.css pages as usual because i customized them, but it's still a happy layout.

if you still see the blue and yellow, hit reload.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

religious stupidity

a certain church has always seemed, to me, to contain more than its fair share of stupidity. here's proof.

what's wrong with this?

doctrinal statements have always been the province of churches. churches have the right to set standards for practicing their rituals and for specifying the way in which those rituals must be observed by their adherants.

but a basic tenent of every religion i'm familiar with is that the sanctity of life is inviolate.

consider: judiasm forbids the mutilation of the dead, but organ donation is acceptable -- even encouraged -- as promoting life.

at least in judiasm, for example, halachic law is clear: if engaging in a religious practice would make you sick, you are exempt from the practice. fasting on yom kippur is traditional and required, but not if you're a diabetic, because not eating for 24 hours can kill a diabetic.

in a religion that professes to support life, one wonders why it would require its adherants to practice rituals that would kill them.

yet when church leaders are unwilling to make exceptions to their doctrines that would preserve the lives of their worshippers, one must wonder just what these people really care about: do they care about the spiritual well-being of their flock, or do they just care about their little narrow-minded interpretation of the rules?

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

homeschooling responses

in the 24 hours or so since i posted that letter to the homeschooling mailing list i joined, i've gotten several interesting responses.

one extremely interesting one pointed me to a secular (non-religious) homeschool cirriculum.

it turns out there's a social gathering not too far from where I live tomorrow (well, today) so I'll be heading over there to see what's up and what I can learn.

a number of the folks on the list suggested i not look at the negatives of public school (there are many, of course), but that i look at the positives of homeschooling. or, perhaps more appropriately, that i draw up some sort of list of educational goals for my children, and that i then develop a plan to meet those goals, whether it involves homeschooling or not. a pros/cons of homeschooling vs. public school list might be helpful, and it's likely that you'll see it here in time as my interest and attention permit the development of such a list.

of course there is always sue and what she wants. i think some of it depends on how ian develops. but given his current personality, i can't honestly see him doing well in a public school environment.

homeschool stuff

this is a post i wrote to a homeschool mailing list. my comments later. i wouldn't mind hearing yours, btw. of course i know nobody reads this crap so it doesn't really matter. also, this post occasions a new category.


[This is long and long-winded. If you want to attack it in sections, or ignore it completely, I'll not be offended. Thanks for your energy!]

So here I am. I'll let you take a guess at my name (since it's on the top of my email). I, my wife, and our three children live at the very southern tip of Fort Worth, in the Crowley ISD. We're close enough to Burleson to be really frightened of it. :)

We have a 2 year old son, and a pair of 1 year old twins, a boy and a girl.

The primary reason I've come is for information-gathering, from real live people near where I live, as opposed to folks in Washington State or New York.

Some background on the source of my interest: My wife was a military brat who spent her life in public school. While I love her to death, the level of her education shows.

By contrast, I went to a (tiny) private school in Fort Worth. Actually tiny doesn't describe it; I went there for grades 2 through 8, and the core group of kids in my class was six kids. Between 7 and 8 many of them left the school, so that in 8th grade there were two students, me and one other boy; there was nobody in 7th grade that year, one girl in 6th grade, and about six boys in 5th grade.

But in a social circle so small, and coming to school in the middle of the year, I was immediately the odd kid out and stayed that way all through school. And because the social circle was so small I didn't bother making friends or trying to learn how.

I then transferred into a public high school in Fort Worth, and spent four and a half years of complete and utter friendless misery being the funny-looking, not-Christian computer nerd who was editor of the useless student newspaper. My high school was a scary place where I was physically assaulted on a number of occasions, got no protection either from my parents or the administration, and I obviously want none of any of that for my kids.

And while my kids are young, this is something I think it's worth thinking about, so that our family can make an informed choice for our kids, rather than a rush decision or simply accepting the default public education because it's what everybody else in the neighborhood does.

I know that the Crowley ISD is relatively good, and we'll be in the area of the new school scheduled to open, I believe for 05-06. And while my wife, a former high school teacher herself, is of the qualified opinion that public school is the way to go, I can't say I'd want my kids going to school with the little thugs who live in our neighborhood. Obviously not blessed with the common sense God gave a slug, I won't be letting our kids play with them in the afternoon; I can't rightly see being comfortable sending my kids to school with them in the morning.

I'm also concerned based on my own school experiences and comparing the meanness of school children against the personalities of my kids, especially my oldest. He's very emotionally sensitive and easily frustrated and discouraged. I have to be careful to not laugh at him when he does something childly funny; he takes it as a hurtful insult, even at this age. I can't say I'm comfortable with the idea of subjecting him to the cruel teasings of public school kids that I know will come even in the best of schools. And because our religious pursuasion is decidedly non-Christian, I'm concerned about that as well; when I was in public school I was physically assaulted on several occasions over my religion and I don't think that's an appropriate thing to put my kids through.

Perhaps as important, my older son is somewhat developmentally delayed. While we don't believe there's anything going on that is of long term significance, it's possible that all three of our kids will wind up in the same grade together, and that leads me to question in my mind the wisdom of sending them to public school together, because of the obvious age difference between them (a year and a few months).

All of that assumes that the public education my children would get is actually acceptable, a question I'm entirely unconvinced about. Recent public debates about various portions of public school cirricula in Texas have distressed me considerably.

The other issue is family-based: My wife, formerly of the Joshua public school system herself, will need convincing and she is unsure that we'll be able to actually accomplish the learning discipline necessary to homeschool. I am a full time college student myself, and she works full time and we don't have the income it takes to do stay-at-home-anybody, much as I think that's a Good Thing.

I also find myself interested in evaluating what I can find in terms of secular-based cirricula. As I've indicated, a Chrisitan religious instruction set will not be appropriate for my family. I'd like to take a look at several alternatives in some detail, yet I'm not sure what options are out there, how I might see something beyond what's published on a web page about them. And I also would like some guidence from yall more experienced folks here about what questions to ask and/or consider when making these choices.

Those are the things on my mind. I'm interested in hearing your take on it all.

Thanks most kindly.

you know your life sucks when

your shrink forgets you have an appointment with her.

Monday, August 16, 2004

technical support

netgear is on my customer service shitlist so hard that i'll never buy another netgear product again.

what happened is this:

many moons ago (think january or february) i bought some refurb netgear equipment: a couple of these and a couple of these.

what i didn't realize is that, unlike every other piece of refurb equipment i've bought, netgear's stuff is sold as-is without warranty. once the store return period runs out, you're not only on your own, they won't even talk to you about it.

i'd bought some of the gear for my office (the central office) and donated it. but i couldn't afford to replace it when it failed, and the office was forced to buy a new router. because of the price difference, the wireless capability had to go away. netgear wouldn't replace or even think about a refurb unit (which doesn't have a serial number on it), and their attitude, even for a little non-profit, was, "well, too bad."

so i decided never to buy their crap again. and i haven't.

i switched to linksys. as a division of cisco, i reasoned that they couldn't be all bad.

so i have one of these. and it seems to lock up every time i push large amounts of data through it (think a couple hundred meg at a time); the light gets stuck on, the computer reports the disconnect, and the only fix is to remove and replug the adapter (since it's usb). this happens on both usb1.1 and usb2.0 pipes. it doesn't seem to matter if it's lan traffic or internet traffic (apparently there's a difference i'm not aware of -- i was under the apparently incorrect impression that, to a nic, data is data is data, but the support droid informs me that there's a difference, although in his broken indian english he is unable to articulate exactly what that difference might be).

so we change channels. we change mtu (maximum transmission unit, which governs the size of a packet of data on the network). we change positions of the gear (which, by the way, were less than six feet apart, with no intervening walls). i even switch the linksys client-side nic to a different access point proving that it's not the access point and other client adapters from both linksys and other manufacturers.

so the support monkey's answer is that there is no answer and nothing else can be done and that's it.

that's it.

speak to non-english-speaking supervisor, who repeats the diagnosis. he's obviously unable to provide any other solution, and refuses to tell me how i can get any other kind of answer other than "tuff titties." there is no other solution.

but a threat to call corporate in california in the morning sends him into a tizzy, no no don't do that, but no i still can't solve your problem. so what other option is open to me?

you know, it shouldn't be this hard. it just shouldn't be. i hold plenty of animosity for support monkeys and the companies that employ them (especially when i used to do support for those very same companies and my job is now gone to the indian support monkeys). but i've also worked in enough call centers that i know how the game is played. and "nothing can be done" is simply a bullshit answer. and it's not even that i know more than the monkeys; its that the monkeys refuse to acknowledge the possibility that i'm anything other than a normal non-intelligent user.

being condescended to by someone with less knowledge than me, especially when they've taken my job, is very irritating. and people wonder why i express problems with these people.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

thoughts on nothing

it's been nearly a week since i've written anything and i don't quite know what to say or why. my life has just been in a holding pattern, and i guess will be until school starts in a couple weeks.

i continue reading the usual suspect blogs, and while they remain funny and enlightening and heart-wrenching and all that, nothing i have to say on my own ever seems remotely worth reading, let alone going to the effort of writing.

i suppose a lot of it has to do with getting canned at the office the other day. a week post-termination i went in to get some mail that had come to me (textbooks i'd ordered on amazon and sent to the office knowing someone would be there to accept them), and my former boss, all sweetness and love when i was canned (since she wasn't a party to it, only told of it after the board had already decided) was decidedly frosty.

she'd moved my old desk around, and that hurt some, but of course it wasn't my desk anymore. she didn't have any questions i needed to resolve; she hadn't called before or since; just two emails to let me know my books were in.

so i got my shit and left.

officially i'm still the webmaster, but it wouldn't surprise me if someone approaches me and asks to take it over, which would be fine. i was in the middle of putting the site into a mysql database and making it speak php and be all dynamic and shit, and it was a fun project, but it's taken a pretty serious back seat since i think i was treated pretty poorly, whatever the reasons for my termination might have been. essentially, i haven't worked on it, and it's taken a good bit of discipline to not simply rm -rf * all the work i've done. (for the uninitiated: throw it away).

so it's pushing two weeks now. i haven't been out of the house much, just running errands. went to the bank, to get a check from my dad, grocery shopping. that's about it. my sleep pattern has fallen back to its natural nocturnal rythem, which is what happens when i have nothing better to do.

and of course my better half is as unhappy as ever with my parenting non-skills. three crying children unnerve me, and when i can't get them to stop it unnerves me even more. because of the stuff at the office i can't honestly say i even feel especially comfortable going to meetings, and i doubt i will for a long time. makes me rethink the whole friend of bill thing completely, as a matter of fact. it seems like every time i've taken on some kind of service obligation it's blown up in my face.

and of course with no income until school starts, i'm going to have to cancel my therapy appointment that's supposed to be next tuesday. sue's employer has succeeded in making it so expensive as to render it useless. at $30 a visit, i can't afford the copays for a weekly or even bi-weekly therapy regimen, and despite sue's making noise of being supportive, i know what she really wants is for me to just take a happy pill and be done with it. she doesn't see the point of spending the money on therapy, and to be honest, with milk at almost $4 a gallon and us using the better part of a gallon a day, i can understand. one appointment is basically a week's worth of milk. given our financial position, it's hard to justify.

yet i find myself resentful that i have to be in this position, as much as parts of it are of my own making. somebody went off on me the other day about "do you think you're owed a job?" as i ranted and raved about how jobs in my industry are feeling the country like dr. hannibal lecter ("i'm having an old friend for dinner.") i believe the incident happened right after i got off the phone with yet another tech support droid from somewhere in asia trying to answer questions on a product it's unlikely she'd ever seen in a language she couldn't speak being paid wages that aren't legal here. the whole episode pissed me off, especially since i paid $20 for her non-help.

i'm caught in a reality where we simply don't have enough money to make ends meet, yet we're too rich for any kind of public assistance. the student aid helps some, but even the financial aid office's numbers admit a gap between the need, the expected family contribution, and the actual aid award. i suppose i'm supposed to pull the difference out of my ass, like everybody else.

and of course i live in texas, where we think it's bad to talk about birth control in school. texas ranks in the bottom 10 of all 50 states in every measure of public health and welfare spending i've heard in the last decade, from children insured through public insurance to availablility of public mental health services to school spending to services for the homeless, near homeless, jobless, or under-employed. we can't even get our shit together about funding our piss-poor schools as it is.

the only thing we're good at is executing people, apparently. (the texas court of criminal appeals is known as the rocket docket to the death chamber for very good reason.)

and sue wonders why i want to keep our kids away from public education here. "exemplary" performance around here usually means "johnny didn't shoot at anybody to day." forget about learning anything useful.

anyway, grouse grouse grouse. according to sitemeter, i've gotten 135 visits this week. nobody is saying anything if they are. i guess i'm not that interesting.

which is no surprise.

Saturday, August 7, 2004

thoughts on search engines

sitemeter, which i found courtesy of julie, does a number of useful things if you run a blog, one of which is tell you what people found your site via a search engine were looking for. some of them are rather interesting.

ovidril is a drug used during an ivf cycle, to stimulate ovulation.

ovarian failure is ... well ... pretty self-explanatory. what i don't know is why my blog popped up, because neither have ovaries, nor have they failed. on the other hand, a single page with "ovarian" and "failure" might have produced the hit; that would have been that long post about my experiences with ivf, where sue had ovarian cysts and we had an ivf failure. (bingo. that's a hit!)

sex "never had kids" vagina is something that ... well ... uhm. i suppose i know where this came from, but ... what gives with the terms? what on earth were you looking for, hon?

+"how to build a blog" +code is easy enough. either read michelle's tutorial, or use wordpress like i do.

a hemangioma is an ugly condition that usually doesn't cause any long-term damage; it's basically a collection of overactive capillaries just under the skin. you'd essentially think of it as a birthmark, but it's a big pain in the butt when they collapse in on themselves, break open, and get infected like happened to the one samantha's back. the one in her lip hasn't done anything like that, thankfully, but it looks ugly and will need to be removed before she goes to school.

preeclampsya is a life-threatening condition that amounts to high blood pressure during pregnancy. the effects can be many, and doctors take it seriously because it can kill both mother and child. sue had this. twice.

Lagunculae leydianae non accedunt is a phrase that popped up in my fortune thing over on the right.

what's most aggrivating about Fertility IVF program Guide after the implant of embryos is that i'm only one of two hits from google for this term. now that i've actually used it exactly like that, i'll be the #1 hit.

restaurant manager aggrivation staff from hell sounds like somewhere sue used to work.

but then what do i know?

Tuesday, August 3, 2004

again among the unemployed

you know your life sucks when alcoholics anonymous fires you.

meow baby

the kitty had an abcess in her gum. antibiotics, cleaning out the abcess, a couple days (and $250) and she should be okay.

she's not really very happy with me right now, though.

Sunday, August 1, 2004

the kitty

kiri is a very, very special cat. when i got her, she was 9. i got her off a petsmart rescue board because i wanted a lap cat who'd love me and be all over me.

kiri is definately that. she's so aggrivating sometimes because she wants to sit on me or directly in front of me all the time.

over the past couple of months she's been losing some weight. tonight i picked her up and saw that she's got a huge abcess of some kind in the right side of her mouth. she's also lost a significant amount of weight in the past couple of days, she's shedding like there's no winter left.

i got her in 1998, i suppose. i figure she's about 15 now. and she's been everything to me that i could hope for in a pet. she's sweet to me all the time, loves me unconditionally, and even forgives me when i'm mean to her (like when i've thrown her off my lap for the 38th time in a half hour).

i'm planning on taking her to the vet first thing in the morning, but have no idea what we'll find.

i hope she'll be okay.