#and like anyone who’s remotely online is getting infected w this way of thinking
tagged by @samarqqand, thank you!!
favorite color: the middle-range of blues like around mid-sea-green blues and cobalt blue. they are very soothing.
currently reading: fic - the many pleasures of TRSB but currently this aule/yavanna fic
lit: idlewild by james frankie thomas - a gay transmasc high school novel that isn't YA and which also understands what it means to be extremely online in fandom in a way that's loving and not gawky (i will resent penance by eliza clark for this, and for also getting the verisimilitude of tumblr c. 2015 wrong) it's fun and clever and also so good at understanding what it's like to be a teenager (gross, horny, histrionic, full of joy and life) and also what it's like to do queer readings of every text (i say, as someone who was v certain that cassius/brutus had it going on in julius caesar); also the shaping of middle-earth for many reasons but primarily because i love seeing the evolution of detail in the silm and then scavenging it for the endless what ifs that are fannish fodder.
last song: love in portofino by dalida. if i cannot be at our riviera equivalent, then i shall listen to dalida and pretend i am.
last series: er, good omens, i think? i am not usually a tv person.
sweet, savory, or spicy? savory, hands down
currently working on: i) finrod invents existentialism (from first principles) & curufin invents progressive schooling (badly) re-embodied in valinor and neither of them are remotely dealing w the complex theological problem of them having got accidentally married in beleriand (oops) and ii) a fic which answers the question "what if second age politics was like high school" and "what does it take to frogboil an otherwise principled character into staging a coup against his aunt" and also, "what if this was a little bit like a classic mean girl movie, actually". this is what happens if you watch heathers and do revenge too many times.
tagging @cosmonauthill, @yeats-infection & @sassysnowperson (but only if they want to!) and anyone else who wants to do this
Here it is. A Piece Of Borrower Content Written Entirely In Stream Of Consciousness:
AN: so this is incomplete and very…needs revisions to the timeline to incorporate some things I added later! It’s the original universe that Mira’s from! I edited it like Slightly to just change Ross’s name to Ross (if u see Max anywhere that’s his old one I just felt like changing it so that’s just him but different. Anyway) Everything's under the readmore tab, cheers!
The Library Fairy:
Basic Plot (Chrono, comic starts from human perspective abt the ‘legend of the library fairy’ ig maybe. Nothing here is permanent cept the characterization)
1- Mira is borrower currently chillin in a college library
2- She lives off of the cafe on the second floor nd reads lots and lots of stuff about everything when the upper floors close (lower floor open 24/7 but upper floors r vacant p much after 12:00 AM)
3- she starts getting increasingly curious about human stuff cos she’s literate nd books r pry neat
4- it starts one night when she spots an unattended notebook and a half eaten blueberry muffin, nd it’s 12:30 so nobody’s coming back in atm (it’s the 80s so no laptops for the plebians quite yet)
5- so she goes ‘welp’ nd takes part of the muffin, then sees the work on the page and goes ‘hmmmm this is incorrect’ so she helps our and leaves notes here n there to point the kid in the right direction and puts down some book refs for further study bcos at this point she’s been there for 2 years and she knows where most things are
6- she stays behind to see if the human comes back for it, hidden in a hidey hole near the desk
7- human comes in, sees notebook, practically melts w relief nd stuffs it in his bag
8- next day human comes back nd leaves nother notebook and a cookie, along w a hidden camera
9- Mira goes ‘o boy, this a trap, innit’
10- Mira then decides ‘eh whatever I haven’t had contact w anyone in years now so I might as well’
11- she steals the camera film nd leaves a lil scrap of paper saying ‘nice try ;)’ on it
12- student comes back, sees paper, goes ‘dammit’, then leaves note addressed to the ‘library fairy’ and another cookie, as well as more of their work for her to help with
13- bout a decade goes by and now the “Library Fairy” is an urban myth, it’s currently 2003 so she’s also wound up on the school’s unofficial Wikipedia page under ‘local cryptids’
14- most library employees know of her but they don’t go looking out of fear stemming from superstitions bout her, somehow the legend grew from ‘can’t be photographed’ to ‘a student once saw her and died that day’
15- there’s now a small shrine devoted to her where ppl bring offerings hoping to get good grades in return, sometimes they will leave papers for her to proofread nd stuff
16- new prof (named Alexei) finds online article thinks he Knows What’s Up bcos he had a borrower friend as a kid, but they left when borrower’s fam found out about them knowing each other
17- he leaves note wedged in one of her secret entrances behind outlet, asking if she can meet w him at some point
18- Mira, already In it, goes ‘Okay. Alright. This has gone on for long enough. Time to go and never return’ but ofc she’s curious as all hell and like she decides she will at least honor the guy’s request for a convo b4 she goes, but on her terms and w/o speaking face 2 face
19- they Talk in the library after hours, bcos he paid off the janitor to let him stay after hours nd most of the student employees recognize him as a prof nd leave him alone
20- they talk again for every subsequent night
21- she uhhhh finally decides to reveal herself nd prays that her hunch was right nd he won’t try to grab her or anything
22- he doesn’t but she’s nervous so she winds up gettin caught in her own climbing rope like idiot, is now dangling from ceiling in tangled mess
23- he stifles chuckle nd she says smthn sarcastic
24- he moves closer and offers to untangle her
25- she’s like ‘please’
26- so he do, but her grip on the rope slips nd he has to catch her
26- so now she’s in his hand and he just sets her down and now he’s a bumbling embarrassed mess bcos he said he wasn’t going to hold her and he just did and o dear pls forgib him
28- nd she’s like ‘dude u just saved my life it’s fine ur fine chill’
29- internally she’s going HOLY FUCK AAAAAAA but externally, her human’s already worked up enough as it is so she’s gotta b the level headed one
29.5- after a while they both kinda get used to each other more, he gets tenure, they celebrate, some more stuff happens, Aleksei got married (not to Mira, Mira hasn’t actually rly thought about being in a relationship w anyone cos she’s laser focused on gaining as much knowledge as possible)
30- eventually Alexei’s like ‘hey so I’m dean of faculty for the biotech branch now uhhhh would u like actual job teaching students? Cos, uh, you can do it remotely thru online lectures n stuff, no in person interaction, and I uh was just kinda wondering—‘
31- she’s like ‘yes. Yes!!! LET ME HELP PEOPLE OFFICIALLY KINDA’
32- so now she’s a professor, and has revealed her Secret a few times here n there to a number of the faculty, nd she has recorded her own findings in a personal journal
33- ‘humans will treat u like a human if they think ur human first. The kids call it ‘catfishing’’
34- enter Ross, an mall goth who accidentally tripped headfirst into a premed program
35- Mira’s favorite field of study is bio so naturally she’s his prof for a majority of his classes
36- being the good boy that he is, he now knows Mira’s secret. There is an Entire Chapter on him finding out and legit just continuing their conversation as if everything was normal bcos he thought that was how he was supposed to handle the situation
37- then she says ‘u can ask questions, u know’ he’s like OH THANK FUCK CAUSE I HAVE SEVEN HUNDRED OF THOSE
38- and now he kinda knows what to look for in terms of ‘do borrowers live here check yes or no’
39-in his apartment, the answer is yes and he mistakenly kinda stumbles upon the mom one night when he wakes up in the middle of the night for Snack and opts to pretend like its not happening. Unfortunately the thing she was trying 2 borrow (piece of crumb cake for Son Boy’s birthday) is the thing he wants 2 eat so he’s like “uh. ‘Scuse me, ma’am.” and he peels back the saran wrap on the other side of the plate, takes piece, nd then leaves some there for her
40-so now the woman is like ‘welp guess it time 2 Leave’
.1- she and husband Talk
.2-they decide it best 2 go
.4-lil bab Ellie confused
.6-cut to Ross
41- Ross also happens to work at a bar and he goes outside for a break
43- he finds smal child—smol smal—on the sidewalk and said child is missing an arm, nd has lost a lot of blood, so he’s uhhhhh Losing It highkey
43.5-parents r nowhere 2 b seen, but the hawk is nearby and circling. Ross gets an idea of what just happened
44- he up and leaves work, thankfully his apartment is above the shop so he jumps up the fire escape w the child and
45- he make tourniquet
46- he calls Mira nd asks her 2 come over to ASAP. he’s A Mess at this point
47- it is Very touch and go, kid needs blood, Mira is the only viable donor so she’s just gotta pray that the blood type is fine and won’t kill him
48- and then eventually they manage 2 stave infection thru antibiotics properly dosed to his size, Mira does Math and Prays basically
49- ‘bout a month in, kid wakes up
50- kid doesn’t rember much since he’s only 3
51- hes v scared of Ross at first but over time he gets used 2 the human
52- kid (elliot) starts 2 call Ross ‘dad’ after a while
53- Ross: *internal screaming but in a good way*
54- the end kinda for now
A- New Borrowers In The Building
—three of em. paranoid dad, mom, nd daughter that’s Elliot’s age so he’s pumped
B- Elliot offers them a place 2 stay briefly
C- he knows by now bout like, how borrowers don’t typically interact w humans and Auntie Mira’s a bit of a weird case so he just doesn’t tell em bout his dad being the human
D- the kid finds out first nd doesn’t tell the parents, but they figure it out later kinda and think that it’s a ‘o god he’s being kept as a pet’ sitch so they’re >:| abt it
E- they move out and try to take Elliot w them (by force bcos they think he’s brainwashed) but he escapes and makes it to Ross, who’s like “uhhhhhh”
F- and the mom come out the hole near the counter n starts yelling at Ross, who is…kinda used to it since Mira brings in ppl who need help from time 2 time and they typically don’t react well when they’re lucid enough to understand what’s going on. He’s just not used to being questioned about his own kid
G- so they’re like “WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’RE DOING WITH HIM”
H- and he’s like “r…raising him???”
I- and Ellie steps up and he’s like “this is my dad. I decided he was my dad when I was three. He’s being a good parent”
J- and Ross is like “yeah what he said. I’m a good parent.”
K- Ross is riding that high til the end of fucking time but like back to the story at hand
L- this is when the husband comes out nd is like “lissen. wifey. ily but that is a very big human and he hasn’t grabbed us yet so let’s count our blessings and gtfo”
M- but she’s like “uh no we stay until I’m sure Elliot is Safe and fucking Sound”
N- so they stay for dinner nd stick around a little longer.
O- Val (the kid) gets closer 2 Elliot and also Ross a bit
P- Mira shows once or twice, first time she shows up they’re like “oh god it’s the crazy doctor lady this all makes sense now” (bcos Mira does check up on as many borrower families as possible in her free time so word has got around by now Of her, and the number by which to contact her in case her services r needed)
Q- After a month or so, then they decide to leave bcos they’re like “look we get that ur son is ur son and he only has one arm and in our profession that is kind of a death sentence but we can’t have our kid getting used to dealing w humans who know about our existence” so they go and leave on a kind of sour note bcos Ellie can do anything he wants to do just as well as any other borrower Thank You Very Much and Ross is ready to fite anyone who thinks otherwise
R- Elliot starts trying 2 b more independent, basically from now on he’s like ‘I can do everything my Damn Self Thanks’
S- but uh he does it to a point where he’s going out of the way to endanger himself
T- so they get into a fite about it and ross Yells and Elliot is like ‘kthxbye’
U- and the boi just. Fuckin bolts. Runs Away. Ross is a Mess, he starts smoking again (he quit cold turkey the day he took Elliot in) to curb the depression, he’s jus. Not doin good, worried that his son is dead and the last time they talked it’d ended badly
V- FREEDOM!!!1! Except Ellie doesn’t kno how to take care of himself so it’s a rough month or so and then he runs into some other borrowers livin in their own town in the wild ig, chillin, being hella independent, and he’s like “uh yes ofc I will join u, I was w my dad for a while but.........” he neither confirms nor denies that his dad’s dead but everyone kinda just assumes.
W-anyway a year goes by and then the borrower group gets hit hard w some kind of sickness ig. Elliot gets it too he’s basically incapacitated n drifting in and out of lucidity. So. They contact the weird crazy doctor lady who hangs around humans, a.k.a. Mira, and she’s like “oh. fuck. I know this kid.” bcos she does, u kno, and she jus treats em all for their ailment and shows them how to make antibiotic poultice thing in case smthn like it happens again. Mold. Penicillin is basically what it is
X-she and Elliot hav a Chat (Mira basically yells at him a lot) once he’s fixed up and he decides he’s gonna visit his dad but he makes it very clear that he is a Grown Up (he’s not, he’s literally sixteen), and he is living on his own now
Y- he agrees to stay for a week tho since he misses his home a lot tbh and Ross is just. Over the fucking moon to know he’s ALIVE, he’s not gonna fuck up their relationship by insisting that he stay. Or like, by keeping him ofc he would never
Z- unfortunately the borrower community put two and two together and figured out his dad’s human so they have his stuff packed up when he gets back w mira, who’s ready to go the fuck off on them
-Ellie is living at Ross’s place atm and hopeful about the future basically. He eventually will go off on his own but he’ll keep in contact w his dad and stuff
55- few yrs later
56- elliot is Adult now he does adult borrower stuff
57- he moves out
58- finds nice borrower gf (her name’s Tess)
59- doesn’t tell her about his dad being human but talks about his dad a LOT
60- so when she asks to meet said father he’s just like “uh. Maybe we don’t do that actually”
61- and she’s like “y tho”
62- and he’s like “bcos”
63- anyway she decides to look into it cos she knows he goes to see his dad nd keep in touch but his dad is allegedly “a recluse who lives in the big scary human’s walls to avoid other ppl”
64- which is. Not true in the slightest tbqh he’s def not an introvert he’s just a workaholic and he Is the big scary human
65- anywho they run into Val and her wife and she’s like “how’s Ross been?” And Elliot is acting Very Suspish so she, being Smart, calls it immediately and is like “oh shit u haven’t told her yet have u”
66- Tess: “told me what”
67- Val: “El’s dad is a human, bro.”
68- Tess: “I’m sorry?”
69- this results in a Big Fight and they separate for like, a month. Elliot blames Val bcos he’s being irrational and doesn’t wanna admit to the fact that lying to his girlfriend for over a year was Real Bad Actually, but over time he’s like ‘yeah it’s my fault sry for snapping at u’ cos he works thru his emotions n stuff
70- Eventually gf comes back cos she’s like “ok so. I understand why you lied to me about your dad. It was a dick move but I do get it and I still care about you a lot. I would like. To meet him.”
80- this is a lie she does not want to meet him she is doing this bcos she does not want to lose Elliot and that outweighs the fear of his dad
81- so they go to meet him but she’s just kinda. Behind the wall at first like “that’s a crazy big human this is crazy ur crazy it’s time to gO”
82- Val is also there bcos she hasn’t seen Ross in a while
83- they eventually coax her out of hiding
84- and by that I mean Val picks her up and drags her out into the open by force bcos she basically freezes up the second she catches sight of Ross and Val’s like “u didn’t come all this way for nothing, bich”
85- they have a Painfully Awkward First Meeting, Tess is trying her best but oh god he’s just too fucking. Larg. Ellie ur dad too big
86- tbh tho the ice kinda breaks after Ellie and Ross get into a fight over smthn stupid (im thinking Elliot grumbles bout Ross’s hair being unruly and he’s worried that mira’s using it like a personal storage system again and Ross is like “I’ve been keeping better track of that actually” and then like a little line of paper clips and a few hand-bound notebooks tied together w some string fall out of his fucking mane and he’s like “I can explain”
87- “dad you can’t keep letting her use your hair like a fucking NEST”
88- Tess is laughing now cos god damn this was not what she was expecting
89- that’s it the end it ends w Tess laughing at them being idiots good times r had by all
Uhhhh that’s it so far. I have More but it’s kinda jumbled rn and I need to fit stuff in places. Anyway.
Lockdown Diary Part 1
A personal account during the lockdown in the UK due to the Covid-19 outbreak.
23/03/2020 8:30pm Boris Johnson, UK Prime Minister, gives a live address to the nation to, effectively, put the country on lockdown to stem the spread of the deadly coronavirus strain, Covid-19.
Many of us have been self-isolating for days but this latest development within the UK in reaction to the pandemic feels very serious and very scary. I decided to keep a simple diary and where better but online.
Day 1: Last night Boris called it, today we’re doing it. I had started working from home (wfh) yesterday as had most people at my work (RCI)..last week I had been preparing laptops as fast as poss for everyone. Even just today, the idea of going into work seems alien and dangerous. Now lockdown (ld) means that it would soon be illegal to do so unless utterly necessary.
Online, FaceBook (fb) especially, is awash with reaction…a lot of calling out people who are out and about in greater numbers than 2, which is against ld rules.
Day 2: Just trying to let work occupy my thoughts and time which is easy enough ‘cos everyone I support (IT engineer) is new to wfh and is having teething problems with all the new laptops. Meanwhile, I keep abreast of comings and goings online…actually socially interacting more than I might otherwise, weirdly
Day 3: Highlight of the day is an online quiz organised by a chap called Jay Flynn on fb…a bunch of us took it as individuals while chatting on Messenger while Jay streamed quiz over fb live and YouTube. It was a good crack and I had two cans of Coors Light which got me pissed!
Day 4: Work is still mad - so many people with IT issues wfh…it’s challenging trying resolve all these probelms remotely but I am rising to it. I actually enjoy it. It satisfies my want for problem-solving.
The ld is in full swing but it’s very early days. The news is dominated, obviously, by Covid-19 and the ever changing stats of infections and deaths. Today, for example, the USA took over, from China, as the country with the most infections. I know there will be an end to all this and I am determined to be there, going out, getting pissed down the pub, gigging, shaking hands with my mates, hugging anyone and everyone who’ll let me - it’ll be a proper party. But I am filled with a dread that it’s going to be a fucking long time coming.
This evening was spent virtually with Foggy, Ham and Andy P…doing a quiz - a rehearsal for Foggy in the hope of doing one to a wider audience next week. It was good fun and great to have a few beers chatting with everyone, Later I video called Fog and we drank ‘til gone midnight, putting the world to rights. I was well pissed.
Day 5: First non-work day of the ld. Housework, daily walk, out for supplies (drop a script order off…queuing outside boots for 15 minues!, bread, baccy and booze). This evening, I’m listening to the next album in NME list of 1985 albums I’m working through - Grace Jones Slave to the Rhythm…fucking pain in the arse ‘cos it’s not on Spotify so I am searching for each song, in order, on YouTube. Plus eating and drinking, of course. Quick video chat with karen and Grace, Dan in the background. I wanted a tin of kidney beans for chilli but Karen hasn’t got one ffs. Burger it is. They are all playing scrabble - I’d love to join in…
Day 6: A quiet day…housework, cooking, daily walk. Highlight was a half hour chinwag with dad who, as I would expect, despite his 84 years, is coping and doing just fine. Most other people with a dad that age would have, on top of their own concerns, something more to worry about during this crisis….for me, it feels like I’ve got someone to turn to, should I need to.
Day 7: Work is starting to feel more routine but it’s a long way off being in the office, which is never routine anyway. That may seem surprising since I do IT support but it’s a varied role, especially at the modern dinosaur of an organisation that is RCI. I try to be as disciplined as possible but I miss not dressing for work, not driving to work, not needing to actually prepare lunch (until lunchtime). I don’t actually need to shower every morning. I don’t think I have to ordinarily but do because I’m mixing with others in the office. I certainly don;t need to now. I only mix with me, so showering becomes a chore but I’m doing it every other morning in the name of the aforementioned discipline.
I am worried how long RCI can keep going before laying staff off. I dread being out of work full stop, let alone during this ld, or even thereafter. I think the economies of the world will need time to recover so finding work will be tough à la 2008. I think, if lay-offs were to occur, I’d be in real danger. Last in first out and all that. But, I’ll cross that bridge if and when I come to it.
Day 8: At work there was a large online meeting whereby the MD told us that RCI are going to furlough some staff. The UK, and Ireland staff will be consulted this coming Thursday and Friday (it’s Tuesday today). I shall be reading up on what the furlough arrangements are in the UK due to Covid-19. I know the government have set aside some money, I need to know what I might get paid and how to claim it. In the past, when I’ve been out of work, I’ve been entitled to jack shit other than JSA, This time around, should I be laid off as I expect, I might not have to eat into my savings, fingers crossed. Meanwhile, I have decided to knock up another blog with a photo of myself each day of the ld (from now on) - it’s a sister to this diary.
Day 9: Actually typing this on day 10. Yesterday was a strange day as I contemplate being furloughed (hope for the best, expect the worst)…I’d be paid 80% of my wage according to what the government have said to assist in the Covid-19 crisis…so, were that to be true, I’d be OK money-wise, although still earning way less than I want to prepared for retirement (I am currently still waiting for feedback on a pay increase request I put in at work last year!) I’m more worried about how I would fill my day if I wasn’t working. So, that being said, I flopped and moped about all yesterday evening after my daily walk and, without achieving much at all, didn’t find time to write this entry on the right day…so maybe I can fill my days without much effort!
Day 10: I was furloughed today, starting 5pm tomorrow (Friday 3rd April) and it’s fucked me off. I know it’s not personal but, actually, do I? They’re cutting back the Kettering Desktop team by one, redacted It seems obvious to do this by the ‘last in, first out’ maxim but what about money? others are on more than me (redacted). What about offering it voluntarily - others might go for 80% pay for fuck all - others have family at home to occupy the day (redacted) . A little bit of me thinks it might be preferable furlough me (redacted) …others seems to be a favourite and that annoys me. It annoys me because I think I shoot myself in the foot too often. I’m too vocal about some of the (redacted) decisions and practices at work, plus other reasons that I know but can’t be bothered to type. But, my point, is I don’t play the politically correct, corporate game and therefore forget to look out for my own best interests. FUCK.
So, as of tomorrrow evening, I’ve no work to do. The challenge will be to find a way to occupy my day. I’ve already registered to volunteer for the NHS during the ld…let’s see what becomes of that. And I’ve signed up for web development course.
I’m going to get fucking pissed this w/e, starting early tomorrow evening.
Day 11: It’s day 12 as I am writing this entry…that might tell any reader, and remind me, that I did as I promised and got pretty drunk. I spent the day geting my work affairs in order i.e. clearing down support tickets assigned to me. I did a good job, nothing left to handover to the remaining team (Jim, Cristina and Mark) and onky one ticket put into the assigned pool. Some nice converstaions were had with associates, many of whom are, too, being furloughed. Nice words were said and Jim and Mark both were supportive in conversations and messages - they both know I don’t wnat this and, I think, they are both relieved it’s not happening to them.
5 pm arrives and I shutdown my work laptop for the last time for at least 12 weeks. After my daily walk, I video chat with Karen, crack open a beer, make Chinese chicken curry (fucking loads, fucking tasty), finish watching The National Theatre stream of One Man, Two Guvnors (really good, see twoinchreview) and the caught up with, and talked bollocks with Andy, Marc and Ham - we tried getting Rog in on it, no dice. I then watched The Heat (I fucking love that film), ate some more, smoked several single-skinners, drank, in total, three cans, seven bottles. I went to bed shortly after 4am. I felt resigned to my furlough and pleasantly wasted.
Day 12: A subdued day…didn’t wake until gone 1:30pm. Jaded but not really suffering. Mooched about, social media, listening to music, watching telly, farting about on the iPad.
My daily walk, over the last fews days, has taken a twist…I am trying to run parts of it. Mainly short distances, 80-100m (I estimate) three, maybe four times. It’s fucking knackering me out. I used to run everywhere when I was a teen. Attempting to run now just makes me feel fucking old. Well, I am, so that’s about right.
Day 13: Another day like yesterday except I got up at 10:30 and didn’t feel jaded. The subdued feeling comes from the realsiation that the ld isn’t being treated as seriously as it should be across the board. The news and even posts by locals on FB (Oundle chatter group) suggest groups still meeting up. The weather this w/e has been a factor - 17°c today. I think a total ld will be enforced soon and that would fuck me off. My daily walk is pretty essential for me nowadays not least for the ‘good for your soul’ benefits that dad has always mentioned. Even today’s walk saw a car parked at the gates to the field on the way to Ashton and people on a blanket soaking up the sun, dogs off their leads and people (looked like a family) playing footy on South Road field.
Individually they are not presenting any danger, what with the fact they are either living together or far away from others. But they are flaunting the rules and the more that happens the less likely they’ll carry on getting away with it, which will mean total ld for all!
I finished the 50 1985 albums today. It mostly confirms to me that I only listened to two albums released that year (Kate Bush, The Waterboys) any other vinyl I spun would have already been in my collection pre-85.
The sausage casserole I made for tea was fucking lush - 4 birdeye chillies.
I saw and spoke with Dan and Grace this morning, they were just coming back from a walk. I am pleased to fuck they are together and sorted out the issues they had earlier this year.
Day 14: My first day proper of furlough. Finished my two inch review of the NME 50 albums. Long chat with Rita, quick one with dad. Messaged Sam about Romiley’s present - she’s 10 on the 9th April (Thursday) - ordered some Lego thing from Amazon. Turned the car engine over (reminded myself the driver-side wing mirror is fucked) and moved it to another spot in the Co-op car park - bumped into Matt T. He’s struggling - no work coming in and he can’t claim any of the money on offer ‘cos he’s not being totally honest about his circumstances - made me realise I’m not that bad off…..but I feel depressed about it all, especially with the news that Boris has gone into intensive care.
Day 15: I began a diploma (?) course on web design with Shaw Academy (it was free). They have actual classes (which are recorded) which you schedule yourself. The first one was, I have to say, really interesting - I look forward to continuing.
On my walk today, I saw a car parked at the gate to the field at the bottom of Riverside Close; it was branded with Cunninghams Estate Agent with a 01536 number. I am pretty sure I saw the driver walking her dog (unleashed) on the field. I took a photo and rang the number. Yes, I ratted the culprit out…fucking annoys me that I had to. Better than reporting to the police, all round. Hopefully her work will put a stop to her doing it and, the more people that adhere to the rules without the police getting wind of infractions, the more likely we’ll be able to continue to exercise away from home.
Day16: More online learning including checking out other sites (pluralsight) for more learning opportunities. Coded my first web page, basic but mine, in HTML and CSS.
A few beers & smokes and watching White Boy Rick in the evening, interspersed with the usual social media / messaging shit, incuding this entry, of course!
Day 17: Typing this on Day 18. After a few beers last night while chatting with Fog (twice - the first chat ended with him ‘having’ to go to bed. Later, I noticed he was commenting on FB, so I video called him…round two of chatting!). I got quite fucking pissed. Bed around 4am.
Day18: Up at 1pm. Long walk today, 7 km. Anything over 40 minutes, I’ve realised, results in a hypo.
Day19: Well, having gone to bed at gone 5am I got up at nearly 1pm feeling far better than I should have. Breakfast followed by a walk, spoke with Karen (mowing her front lawn) and Dan. He and Grace have split up which is sad news but he seems OK.
Went shopping (milk and sweets) and ended up with a shit load of booze, the post of which on FB was quite amusing.
Homemade burgers for tea (they’re in the fridge as I type) - gonna try and make Five Guys…
Day20: The Five Guys burger attempt didn’t go as well as I wanted. I think less than 5% fat mince just doesn’t bind that well. However, I managed to get something resembling a burger into the bun and, with cheese, hot sauce and jalapeños, it was tasty enough. More of the same when I finish typing this entry.
Strange Easter Day today, as I knew it would be. The best thing I saw today was a video Tom posted on FB of him and Molly doing a mashup of Starsailor and George Michael - Tom on guitar singing the former, Molly singing the latter. It was fucking fantatstic.
Day 21: Easter Monday. Surreal…it’s feeling very surreal now, this lockdown.
Two things that bother me right now:
i) The political point scoring on FB. I get it, I really do…people like to bring up ‘obvious’ failings in the party’s mistakes. For example, Marc posting comparisons between UK and Germany’s figures of cases and deaths due to Covid-19. I doesn’t make impressive reading for the government and it should be held accountable. But not fucking now!
ii) Will they introduce rotational furloughing at RCI? It’s only been a week, 11 to go. And, it bothers me that I was furloughed rather than Mark. Pathetic of me, I know! But, should it last the 12 week stretch, I want to go back to work and let someone else have the chance to have fuck all to do all day! That being said, I’m still learning web design through Shaw Academy. Even today, bank holiday, I revised Lesson 2.
Day22: Nice catchup with Dad today - he and Rita seem to be more than OK with lockdown. I actually cannot wait until we can meet up at The Farmers again!
Day 23: While I had a Corvee engineer come to the house today to do a gas safety check (I waited upstairs while he was here, self-isolation and all that), and had the fourth online web design lesson, had a trip to Boots to pick up insulin, got milk from Tesco’s, saw American Rachel and had a chat (while we both queued to get into Tesco’s) and had a very nice walk along a different route from the norm, in the pleasant sunshine and watched Contagion on Netflix - all today - I AM STILL BORED AS FUCK!
Day 24: I had plans for today - revise the last two lessons of Shaw Academy’s web design course, investigate a ethical hacking course, do some washing, clean upstairs (or at least the bathroom) plus all the usual stuff. Then, as a reward, have some beers.
Well, guess what. I am not having beers this evening. I managed the laundry. Plus I manged to subtitle my YouTube perfect snabby video (something I have been meaning to do for a while, but, come on!) It took me fucking ages. But it is funny!
So, a fucking far from fruitful day. Plus the government announced at least 3 more weeks of lockdown. There’ll be loads more, I reckon.
Tomorrow…I promise I’ll be better tomorrow…
Day 25: I did do better! Firstly the Corveee man fucked the boiler which I only noticed late yesterday but still managed to get sorted today. I did some excellent revision and learning of HTML (tags) and CSS. I cleaned the bathroom and hall. And I discovered TikTok (fucking excellent dancing and funny vids) plus discovered a new FaceBook word game (Sam sent me an invite) called WordBlitz and I am pretty good. Having beers now (nearly 11pm).
Day 26: Today I found myself calling 111. I had a pain in my side last night, I thought it might be constipation! That not being the case (!), today I went to 111.nhs.uk and, following their questions, it recommended I seek out a GP straightaway. Once I let the website know that is not possible, it directed me to visit walk in centres. I spoke with Karen thereafter - for advice about whether it’s a good idea to enter such an establishment - I really don’t want to increase me chances of catching the Covid-19 virus. Karen recommended ringing 111 since the website does not take into account my diabetes (so bloody sensible a suggestion!)
After ringing and answering many questions, the lady said she’d get an OOHS GP to call. The doctor called soon after and it seems most likely I have a grumbling appendix (chronic appendicitis) and to ring again (well, 999) if the pain becomes unbearable.
I now have a bag at the ready for hospital which I really hope I don’t have to use.
Today, I have, therefore, done fuck all - not even a walk - but I am having a beer now (midnight) and shall attempt to sleep as well as possible and hope this pain subsides naturally…
It occurs to me that I turn to Karen when things become flumoxing - my excuse, this time, is she works at the surgery but that was mere convenience.
Day 27: My ‘appendicitis pain was the same when I woke up (10:20) but no worse. I managed to change bed clothes and clean my bedroom but didn’t risk a walk (in case something drastic happens when I’m in a fucking field).
People’s responses and questions online have been heartening (Rachel Harris, Susie Grange, Bethan, Jo, Tracey Weber, Debbie De Prisco and, not least Dan). As the day progresses, I feel better but not right. I spoke with Dad about it and, as I told him, I shall ring Oundle GP tomorrow. Meanwhile, I did Sam Clew’s FB Live quiz, which was good, and am now having a beer or two.
Day 28: The pain in my side has definitley diminished. I called the Oundle surgery today to talk about what treatment I should have for ‘grumbling appendicitis’. The reseptionist organised a call back from a GP - Dr. Cash. Basically, he said he didn’t believe the condition existed, that acute appendicitis doesn’t happen after the age of 35, and ‘his gut felling’ is it will all just clear up.
I shall seek a more sensible diagnosis after lockdown and hope it doesn’t flare up again before then.
Day 29: I sent an email to the team at work today (Jim, Mark, Cristina and Sueanne). I hadn’t heard from them and I wanted to check in and, also, make a point that I will be posing the ‘rotational furlough’ question to HR at some point. It was as I wrote the email that I realised it’s only been two weeks and two days of furlough, and that includes Easter! Seems so much fucking longer. Anyway, everyone replied and it was good to hear from them….Mark came off his bike and broke ribs and collarbone!
Lesson 5 of the Web Design course with Shaw Academy. It’s becoming apparent that, if you don’t pay for the course ‘toolkit’ it’s all rather patchy! The instructor dives into lines of code (HTML, CSS and Java) with no explanation….I feel like I did on the ifrst lesson of further maths ate Stamford School! I shall soldier on and beef up the missing parts with W3Schools (a great website and learning aid for coding).
Two quick points. I am no longer running any part of my daily walk; hurts too much. I am addicted to Wordblitz and TikTok.
Day30: I am writing this on day 31, I just forgot yesterday! It was a non eventful day. I did watch Midnight Run (again!) and had a couple of midweek beers though.