Life Log #03: Strange Spines, Mites, and BEER!

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The past five days have been…interesting. Yes. Interesting. Let’s go with that.

So, what happened?

  • I discovered mites in one of my snake cages and had to cancel my Friday plans to spend close to 5 hours cleaning cages, treating cages, rewiring cages, etc. The snake is fine, I think. He ate his food without problem, so the mites are more an irritant than anything else. Still, they must be destroyed. (Un)fortunately, all of this revealed that two of my heating units had shorted, possibly as far back a the hurricane. One almost burned through a cage. The new heating units I ordered turned out to be just a tad small, so I had to order another one. Yay.
  • I found out that my back problem is not a muscle problem. It’s likely a spine problem. I’m told it’s probably not serious. Apparently, when you bend over to do a stretch, the lower portion of your spine is meant to curve. Mine doesn’t. It can, but it doesn’t.
  • I’m two weeks behind on dissertation edits, and I’m probably going to get yelled at.
  • The Florida Gators lost their football game. It wasn’t even a good loss. We got stomped by a team that shouldn’t have beat us so badly. It’s been a trash season. Meanwhile, Alabama continues to be good. We hates them.
  • I’ve gained most of the weight I lost earlier this year from a combination of travel bloat and my back injury keeping me out of the gym. No gym means a depressed Shaun, and that means more food. Discovering beer doesn’t help.
  • I now have a $100 deductible on my insurance. That plus $100 in replacement reptile supplies plus $800 in university fees (grumble) and $100 in personal training meetings in the next week and a half means I’m now completely broke. Not happy.

I think that’s all of it.

Look, none of this is the worst thing in the world. I’m better off than a lot of people, but I’m also just stressed the frick out and exhausted. Some of this is my fault. I traveled this year, so that meant I spent money I probably shouldn’t have. But I also refuse to live like a hermit who just saves every dime with some vague hope that it’ll translate into riches. Frankly, I’ve given up on the “bootstraps” narrative. If hard work really mattered, my mother wouldn’t have struggled for so long just to get to a point of vague economic stability. If hard work really mattered, pretty much everyone I know would be independently wealthy. But pretty much everyone I know is either firmly lower or middle middle class OR straight up in poverty. Not a single one of them is a lazy loser. But I digress…

So, that’s where I’m at. I’m grumpy. I’m stressed. And I’m looking forward to not feeling that way.

Now for something happy:

An obligatory cat picture!

Winston is adorable. Admit it.

Culture Consumed!

Currently Reading:  Starship & Haiku by Somtow Sucharitkul (still)
Currently Watching:  Men in Black (1997)
Currently Playing:  Nothing because I’m a sadpants
Currently Listening To:  The Martin Garrix Show
Currently Drinking:  Sprecher’s Mango Radler
Current Mood:  Grumpypants

I continue my journey through the infinitely strange Starship & Haiku. How strange, you may ask?  Just read this page and see for yourself:

That happens to be a conversation…with a whale. Yes. A whale

This is a really strange book, y’all. I can’t stress that enough. STRANGE. I don’t know what to think of it. Is it the kind of strange I like? Is it the kind of strange an editor should have said “no” to? I’m not sure yet, but I’m going to finish it nonetheless! (Honestly, I’m probably going to have some issues with this one.)

Beyond that, I decided to re-watch Men in Black, both because I really enjoy that movie and because I get something else out of it each time. You should expect a post about that film in the near future. If you’ve never gone back, you might want to give it another look with an eye on the characterization. I noticed some things that weren’t clear to me when I first saw the movie 20 years ago. Good god…it’s been that long.

And on that note, I will sign off!


What about all of you? What are you currently enjoying?

About the Author:

Shaun Duke is an aspiring writer, a reviewer, and an academic. He is currently a graduate student at the University of Florida studying science fiction, postcolonialism, posthumanism, and fantasy.


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