The Pied Piper

I was going to write something here, but I’ve already forgotten, heh.  It’s only been about 1 minute…

Well, I’m planning on building a new PC, but I’m unsure of how I want to approach this.  I’d also like to sell my laptop (Dell XPS 15 9560).  The laptop is fully loaded, but it’s just insanely fragile and I worry about taking it anywhere.  I feel more comfortable carrying around a 12 year old Dell Latitude E6230.  Actually, I was thinking of buying another Latitude, one that I can use with the docking station I have and that has an i7 processor.

When it comes to stuff like this, I just have no moderation… gotta have the best.  However, I’m sealing my fate by spending this money.  It’s ironic how you can continue to go into debt while you’re going through the motions of bankruptcy.

There are only so many pages left in this chapter, and things will change soon.  I look forward to grad school for my Biology studies.

There’s not really a lot I want out of life, but for once, I just want to relax.

Everyday is Saturday

Finally switched PHP versions on the server, updated WordPress, removed unused themes as suggested, changed file permissions; everything is secure at least according to WordPress.

Had a taste of what my meds can do to me when they get messed up (again).  Only this time, I weathered the storm until bed time and then took ALL my meds at once (even the morning and evening dose of Geodon together).  I petty much slept through Monday but I was in 1000x better shape the morning after.  Really glad I didn’t drop classes.  All I’m taking this semester is Chem 1a and research.  So far, it’s looking like an easy semester.  I got my financial aid decision on Monday so I’m set to continue.

Edit (5/19/20): So I’ve let this draft sit for a bit.  I got even more financial aid, and I’m just dumb enough to take all of it.  Amazing how in 2 semesters I’ve already racked up as much debt as I had in 4 years of undergrad for my engineering degree.  That’s life I guess.  They wrap you in a blanket and strap you down so you can’t move and they roll you down a dark hall to your prison cell.

Chem 1a is easy.  Mostly unit conversions and density, states of matter, etc.  I guess I should read Chapter 1 of the book, but I already read it technically speaking.  I dunno.

Hopefully all this bankruptcy stuff is coming to an end…  It’s almost June.  My therapist got laid off.

I mean, seriously.  This is how the last 5 years of my career have gone.  Maybe I’m repeating myself.  After so much bad luck, we have to have a pandemic??  Go figure.  Life gets weirder every day.

Sample review: The Price is Right Losing Horns

I’m not really sure how to describe this one, other than if you’ve never seen The Price is Right, you should dig up an old VHS with an episode recorded onto it and watch.  I mean the old episodes with Bob Barker.  The stuff I used to watch on TV during the week while mom was in the shower or doing whatever.  Somehow I have quite vivid memories of this.

Anyway, this is a classic sample, and it popped into my head for no particular reason.  It’s perfectly fitting for the state of the world right now.  Lambert and Lambert gives this two middle fingers.  Do not pass go, collect your stimulus check anyway, proceed directly to debtors prison.

Some helpful advice: If you have managed to maintain your job, and you are lucky enough that you will keep it through this pandemic, remember the principle of dollar cost averaging.  Long term benefits of DCA are very real.  Also, sunscreen, but that’s another song, so we’ll leave that for later.

A Dream, Volunteering, Trying, yadda yadda

I had a dream last night that I got approved for disability.  The DE said they would make the decision some time in May, but with the way things are going, I’m not confident that will happen.  It’s been 6 months now since I’ve applied, and I applied with the help of an attorney.  My psychiatrist however, is overprotective.  Now that I’ve found a movement disorder specialist, I’m changing psychiatrists.  I have a therapist, and where I have therapy also does psychiatry, so it will be better to have both at the same location because the therapist and psychiatrist can share notes and communicate.  It’s a government run mental clinic, so when I lose my insurance I’ll still be able to continue treatment.  Thing is, my COBRA is $700 a month, and disability will probably be barely twice that.  I’ve been on COBRA so long now that it will run out soon.  Few more months.  Then I have to figure out what’s next.

Taking classes and volunteering at church put me in a situation where, from what I have read, means that I could be gainfully employed, perhaps just not as an engineer and/or making as much money as I was before.  Whatever the case, I’m (mostly) happy right now, but I am seriously reconsidering where I want this to go.  I feel like this is a major life decision.  I suspect however, that I have time to make this decision after I get my first disability determination.  Maybe I should call my lawyer tomorrow.   Regardless, I feel like this is a losing battle.

I am trying, legitimately.  I just don’t know if I’m going to shoot myself in the foot, if I haven’t already.  I’ve tried for the last 5, maybe 6 years only to wind up nowhere.   A beautiful collection of lies and fake friends, or worse, people who don’t even try to be friends and choke on a pea the very first day you meet them at lunch.

Then comes along a world pandemic…  I don’t even need a career for my life to be so bizarre, or to keep myself busy.

I need a surprise, something unexpected, something new.  You can’t live in the fear of something that might happen to you.

How the meds work

People don’t understand how meds work.  Quite frankly, I don’t really either.  No, really, it’s a mystery.  It’s a mystery to even the best psychiatrists.  All meds are slightly different, for the most part, but have the same general effect.  However no two people are alike, so the physical symptoms that arise alongside different meds will be different.

I crashed again this morning.  This is a perfect example of WHY even the right meds, which can take years to find, still leave you with holes in your life that will never be filled.  They say meds are only part of the picture, the rest is therapy.  Even therapy can lead you down a dark path, because one’s interpretation of symptoms might be different from another’s, which can lead to misdiagnoses.  I got good sleep last night, I even went to bed early.  But around 10am I fell asleep and I’m just now getting out of bed around 7pm.

The medication keeps you stable, but your symptoms are constantly in a state of flux.  Some days are good days, some days aren’t.  The good days, you could get by without your meds, at least in theory (but never stop your meds without talking to your doctor).  The bad days you just gotta suck up and lie in bed all day and try not to think about anything negative.  The meds can’t eliminate bad days completely, they just make you have fewer of them.  Your illness is still there, just around the corner, ready to remind you of its presence.

Album review: Moses Sumney – Aromanticism

I first heard about this album through Vinyl Me Please, and yes, I have it on vinyl.  This is a particularly different album from the norm where love songs abide the mainstream.  The instrumentals alone in this album set it apart.  Moderate dynamic range.  In general this album is pretty tame, but that’s what you should expect from an aromantic.  I’m not sure if Moses Sumney really IS aromantic, or if he just wrote an album about it, but it seems convincing.  The album is very short, only 34 minutes… almost as if it were made for vinyl and it just happened to be ported to Spotify afterwards.

Am I vital
If my heart is idle?
Am I doomed?

Probably the strongest lyric elements in the entire album, aside from the lyrics to stoicism.  The quintessential question for any aromantic: If I don’t love someone, what will happen to me?  This is the fundamental question, not a question many people will ever ask themselves.  I am not a philosopher, but this seems like a good point to let you ponder for a while on how to interpret this.

Odd day…

I woke up around 1am, probably because I hadn’t taken my night meds.  I wound up not taking them and just staying up.  I was waiting for the squall of storms to pass.  I enjoy thunderstorms, I enjoy Florida summers which have lots of storms.

When it finally started to rain around 6:15am, I stopped what I was doing on my computer and went to lie down in bed.  This time around, it was not much of a storm.  Except for one, really close strike that sounded like a bomb went off.  A good morning to be thankful I’m not homeless.  I don’t know where the homeless people around here go, anyway, but if you’re going to be homeless in any of the 50 states, Florida is probably the best option.

Despite what you would think, there are some very helpful resources at the University which oversee the student body and make sure everyone stays safe, secure, and happy.  It seems a bit ominous, but my experience has been positive, especially now that I am connected with a therapist.  I’ve never done well with therapy, at least group therapy anyway.

This blog actually juts out like a sore thumb, I’d better be careful and cautious about what I write here.  This world is trigger happy.  Everyone has their emotional support dog.  I just have my cat, who is now an outdoor cat, and who sleeps during the day and goes out all night long.  Kinda sounds like me.

I need to write notes on what to talk about with my therapist.  There’s a lot going on right now.  I could stare at a blank wall for hours and never get bored with my own thoughts.

One thing is for sure, though… Wherever I go in my career change, as a result of going back to school, I will not leave Orlando.  Something’s on my mind and it’s bothering me.

Moving on towards the future…

Well, this will be my first post to my brand new blog site, K1VZX blog.  There are several tags above highlight what I’ll post here.  I will probably reorder these at some point.

Right now, I am currently a student.  My first semester back at the University of Central Florida was Spring 2020 (i.e., this semester).   However, when news of Covid-19 hit home at the same time as spring break came to an end, the lack of structure in my day meant I wasn’t accomplishing anything practical and so I wirthdrew from all of my classes because I was sinking into depression and had stopped taking my meds.  I was Baker Acted for the 2nd time and placed at a hospital all the way up in Gainesville where I stayed for 5 days.  I was placed back on my medication and slowly forced myself to eat again.

This blog will touch on mental illness, but will not focus on it.  I’d like to focus more on academia and my experiences as a second degree seeking student who is planning to go on to do a Master’s.  I already have a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Electrical Engineering.  Biology is on another level.  “Scholars of trivia” as John Nash puts it in the movie “A Beautiful Mind”.  I’m not in a rush to complete a Bachelor’s or a Master’s.  It’s about the journey, not the destination.  Then, we’ll re-evaluate and see where my career goes from there.

I’ve worked in a Biology lab for the past 10 years (off and on again, usually between jobs).  I enjoy research.  Pretty soon, my room will be jam packed with cables and wires, something like out of the movie Pi.

Just some quick news:  I will be adding a tutorial on my wiki to show how to setup a Git repository on a linux server (or any system that can run SSH really) and then use TortoiseGit to manage your project with the Git Repo on your server.  The process is confusing because there does not seem to be any simple guides on the process, yet the process really is very simple.  Also, there are some useful tools that integrate Git into LabVIEW, however I have not as of yet had any time to check them out.  Maybe over the weekend…  (These tools are not necessarily open source or free).