RIP, Summer 2019: 2019-2019

This summer sucked, and now it’s over. Which is the rough equivalent of complaining about both the taste and the portion size of your food, but such is life at the moment, I suppose.

It would be a joke if it weren’t so close to undeniable truth: I have previously said, in this space and elsewhere, that 2016 was easily the worst year of my life, and I usually pair that observation with the comment that it feels odd to me to be able to so easily pinpoint something like that. 2019 thus far has handed 2016 its beer, lit itself on fire and jumped off a cliff, and there are still four and a half months of this impossibly miserable soul-sucking bastard of a year left. I wanted to get a novel written this summer; that became a sad joke so fast that it’s barely even worth reminding everyone of. My total fiction output for the entire summer probably did not reach 10,000 words, and the book got a page-one rewrite anyway before I gave up on the entire idea.

I have mostly been talking about this on Patreon due to my somewhat less public profile over there (and the fact that no actual relatives subscribe to me on Patreon) but there have only been perhaps three or four days since April 26 where I did not have at least one if not both of my parents in some sort of medical facility, either an actual hospital or an inpatient physical rehab place. My dad is home– still having issues, but home– and my mother is due to be released Tuesday. I will be in my classroom all week, my first contractual day is Wednesday, and the students return on Thursday.

I, along with every teacher on Earth, only very rarely begin the school year genuinely feeling ready for school to start, and even when I am I’m more likely than not to at least joke about mourning the end of summer. I am less prepared, on every level– emotionally, mentally, physically, curricularly, you name it– for school to start right now than I have ever been in my life. I feel like returning to work in general may actually be making a mistake right now. That said, I have about a month worth of money left in the bank– just enough to make it to my first paycheck of the next school year– so it’s not like I have a choice.

I am very, very strongly considering making an appointment with my doctor to go back on my brain meds. The only problem with that idea is that I probably won’t be able to get an appointment for a few weeks and even once I do the first month on Lexapro all I want to do is sleep and I don’t think that’s a thing I can have going on during the first grading period of a new job at a new school. So “tough it out” is going to have to be a strategy for dealing with mental illness, I suppose.

I can’t pretend to be excited about this year– not right now. The best I can hope for at this point is survival. We’ll see how it goes.

My birthday must be next week

Look what’s blooming in the back yard!

On my life of luxury

Now that we are … y’know, pool people, and now that it’s starting to be warm enough that actually using the thing without freezing to death is a possibility, man, this was the right call. It’s still cold, mind you– I actually had to kick the boy out after a while because he lacks his father’s insulating layers of body hair and fat and the shivering was getting to the point where I felt like it was probably kind of dangerous. But man, it has been nice the two or three times I’ve been able to use it this week. Seriously consider getting yourself one of these things if you have a few hundred dollars to spare and some level lawn space, y’all. Life-changing.

My wife is leaving me and heading off to Boston to do work stuff for a week, so it’ll just be the boy and I around here for the next several days. My goal is that the two of us not spend the entire time playing video games. I have actually done pretty well in sticking to the goals I set at the beginning of this week. I’m a little bit behind on the wordcount I wanted, which will surprise absolutely no one, but it’s at least happening. Which is progress, right? Feel free to encourage me to continue by buying a book if you’re so inclined. They’re cheap!

The goal right now is to have enough written by InConJunction in a couple of weeks that reading an excerpt at some point is a viable possibility. I don’t know for sure if I’m going to have a panel schedule or not, but I volunteered for a bunch of them so there ought to be something. I will keep everyone updated, of course.

Who won the pool?

If you had “day two of summer break” as your prediction for When Will Luther Collapse Into a Lifeless Puddle of Body Fluids, Trans Fats and Regret, you are a winner! Collect your prize on the way to literally anywhere else, because ain’t nothing going on over here right now.

In which I dress for success

I alluded a couple of weeks ago to a job opportunity that I was looking at that would have represented a substantial raise as well as a responsibility level more in-tune with my current career goals. I am proud to announce that, in keeping with being in week 7 or so of the worst month of my life, I was not even called for an interview for that job despite being literally the only person currently employed by my district who has done it.

I did have a job interview today, though, for my own fucking job, as in the job I have right now and I have been doing for a year. They slightly altered our job descriptions and cut a few of us and so everyone has to re-interview. I spent some time last night thinking carefully about what to wear to the interview, which I had deliberately scheduled for the last half hour of the school day so that I didn’t have to return to my building afterward.

My typical work uniform is a collared shirt, short-sleeved, with jeans and black shoes that pass for dress shoes at a casual glance but are not. I occasionally wear a tie, especially earlier in the year, and during the winter I frequently wear a sweater over the shirt. I despise long sleeves– something about the feeling of cloth on my forearms has always made me skeevy– and even if I’m wearing a dress shirt or a sweater the sleeves will be rolled up, meaning that I don’t often wear a sport jacket (or a blazer, or a suit coat, and frankly I don’t know what the hell the differences are between those things) because I’m not about to unroll my sleeves and struggle with cuffs just to put a jacket on.

Anyway, I ended up going with a dress shirt and a tie and jeans and slightly more formal shoes, because fuck it, I’m interviewing for a job I already have and if my clothes matter then my clothes don’t matter at all, if that makes any sense and just stare at it until it does if not.

I think the interview went okay, but hell if I know. The general rule lately is that if anything can go wrong it will, so I’m sure I fucked this all up somehow. There is one more day of school tomorrow and then a teacher work day and then I will relax for three days and then I’m gonna start writing a goddamn book. I got plans, dammit.

Oh, and when I got home I jumped in the pool for the first time. Which was fucking freezing. I’m not complaining. I’m in the right mood for freezing cold water, and I wasn’t in there for more than 20 minutes or so anyway. But man, it was nice.