It continues: the continuation

Look at this nasty-ass filthy-ass ugly-ass carpet:

Nonetheless, the only things remaining in the room are those lamps and that vacuum; the dolly and the small pile of electronic detritus have both been removed, and the room is officially empty.

That stain on the blinds predates our ownership of the house. I’m looking at you next, nasty-ass blinds.

The piano was moved, and while it didn’t go far it frankly wasn’t nearly as much trouble as we feared:

And check out the current state of our dining room. The boy is included for scale:

New carpet goes in tomorrow. God, we should have gone ahead and repainted in there. I’m going to end up regretting the decision to move so quickly on it.


IN OTHER NEWS, I went to the doctor’s office today. Roughly three weeks ago (time post-Covid is meaningless, it could be anywhere from five weeks ago to yesterday) my cat, the one who managed to insert herself into two of the three pictures on this post, attempted to jump into my lap and, somehow, missed. This led to one claw– one fucking single claw— digging through my shirt and deep into my stomach, and me having to literally pry her claw out of me by grabbing her by the one leg she was dangling off of. I have had a hydrocolloid bandage on the injury for most of the time between then and now, and the fucking thing wasn’t healing right. The last two bandages had to be swapped out when it became clear that the wound was somehow continuing to bleed under them, and it was still looking kind of red and ugly and hole-like, and I finally called my doctor’s office yesterday and forced my way into an appointment this afternoon.

Naturally, when I got up and changed the bandage it looked more healed than it’s ever looked, but it was still redder than I want and slightly warm to the touch. I decided to keep the appointment. My mom spent most of the last year of her life with a wound vacuum attached to her in one place or another, and if I’ve inherited her disinclination to heal when cut I’m not fucking around with it. The doctor looked at it and asked me a bunch of questions that all had “no” as the answer, then got real thoughtful for a second and asked me if I thought there was any chance there was still a bit of cat claw left in the wound. I said I doubted it , as I feel like I’d have noticed if I broke something off when I grabbed her, but we decided out of an abundance of caution to put me on a quick course of antibiotics and, and this was fun, do a stomach x-ray to see if we could detect any sort of foreign body. She couldn’t feel a “pus pocket” by manipulating my abdomen, so she was pretty sure there was nothing in there, but what the hell; x-rays are free in America, after all, right?

I highly recommend the experience of having someone try to detect a “pus pocket” in your stomach by touch, by the way.

There’s not much of a story about the X-rays beyond the look on the tech’s face when told that we were looking for claw bits in my stomach. She was, I think, skeptical of the entire enterprise, and I haven’t gotten a phone call yet about whether they found anything. I assume the aforementioned pus pocket would show up before the actual claw bit, which is, after all, at least organic.

Hey, speaking of my doctor, remember that sleep study I did? I never heard back! Not a thing. And for a while I was doing that thing where every single time I remembered that I never heard back about the sleep study was at a time where calling the doctor’s office was simply not practical, ie, right before going to bed, and then eventually it just fell off my radar and became something to remember to ask about the next time I saw my doctor. Which I did today! And I remembered to ask her about it, and I was really entertained to watch her face as she went through several stages of 1) trying to remember ordering me a sleep study in the first place, 2) “wait, I never got the results on that either,” and 3) “Oh, shit, leaving this guy on the hook for three months is kinda unprofessional.”

Well, turns out they never got sent to her either, at least not through the usual channels, and one way or another she found them, and …

Man.

Y’all.

I’ve got apnea apnea. Like, I have the kind of sleep apnea that regular sleep apnea is afraid of. It appears that I’m not breathing while I sleep at all. This paragraph, which I was howling with laughter at the utterly incredulous look on her face while she was reading it to me, is directly from the interpretation report of my results, HIPAA be damned:

There were 17 obstructive, 25 central, and 0 mixed apneas resulting in an Apnea index of 4.3. There were 728 hypopneas resulting in a Hypopnea Index of 75.2… Baseline oxygen saturation was 87%. The lowest oxygen saturation was 70%. Oxygen saturation was below 88% for 296.5 minutes or 51.1% of the total recording time… This is a markedly abnormal polysomnography study with almost continuous respiratory events and results in an overall respiratory events index severely elevated 79.6.

Now, I’m not a doctor, and I don’t know what all of those words mean, but a “hypopnea” is ten seconds of shallow breathing, and that happened seven hundred and twenty-eight times.(*) And I’m seriously considering renaming the blog Markedly Abnormal.

So. Yeah. They’re ordering me a fuckin’ Darth Vader mask to sleep in, I assume.

(*) I just looked, and they consider it “severe” hypopnea at thirty an hour, which would have been just under 270 times. So … yeah.

On exhaustion and bad parenting

I have done some grading tonight, but not much, and I regret to inform you that you cannot make me do any more. Nor can you make me get any lesson planning done; this week is going to be by the seat of my pants, more or less, and it’s going to be fine anyway because this shit is muscle memory by now. This weekend was kind of nuts; my father-in-law’s memorial service was Saturday morning in Plainwell, Michigan, which means I got up earlier on Saturday than I typically get up during the week and spent the drive up hurriedly composing the eulogy I was supposed to deliver in my head, sans paper, because for some fucking stupid reason I hadn’t written it yet.

Don’t leave eulogies to the last minute, people. I pulled it off and everything went fine because I am exceptionally talented, but … don’t do that.

Oh, and the … hole? Is it still a grave if you’re just using a box with an urn and some Beefeater Gin in it and not a casket? Well, whatever it was, the Goddamned thing was too small, and everyone got to take turns digging the hole wider and deeper with what I think were technically stolen shovels before the service started. My wife briefly considered putting the box in sideways, an idea that was quickly vetoed out of existence, and we all just sucked it up and got to digging, my father-in-law’s amused laughter echoing from inside his box.

Afterwards the whole extended family went out for Mexican, because really, what else are you going to do? Sure.

And because emotional whiplash is how we do things nowadays, we had tickets to see Barenaked Ladies Saturday night. By “we” I mean all three of us; it was slated to be the boy’s first concert, and I think he was pretty excited about it. Which meant we were all a bit surprised to be leading a sobbing child out of the theater barely four songs into BNL’s set, meaning that we really only got to hear the (shitty) opening band’s set, and we didn’t get to hear the one BNL song that the boy has memorized and really wanted to hear, as I’m sure it was the last song of the night.

Parenting advice! Concerts are fucking loud. This particular concert was perhaps too loud. And, like, I mean that as a reasonably veteran concertgoer; it was too loud for me, and I’ve seen shows in that venue before. That said, though, like, BNL doesn’t need to be blowing my Goddamned eardrums out. This isn’t a hard rock band or some shit like that, and even the shitty opening band was too fucking loud, and they were going for some sort of pop/bluegrass nonsense or something like that, so they definitely didn’t need to be super loud.

Anyway, we were unprepared. We should have brought headphones and/or earplugs, or at least warned him thoroughly, and we did none of those things. I’m not mad at him and this is one hundred percent our fault as the adults in the scenario. He doesn’t necessarily Have Sensory Issues in the way people generally mean that, but we should have been able to see this coming and we didn’t. The worst thing is that he was clearly upset about ruining the concert for us, and it’s hard to convince an upset eleven-year-old that you’re not mad at him and you’re not disappointed in him when he’s absolutely certain that both of those things are true.

So … yeah. I’ve mostly laid around like a lump today. I have started the new Stephen King book; it is terrible, and I am currently deciding if I’m going to drop it or hate-read it. It is about a seventeen-year-old who is somehow actually however old Stephen King is, and said fake teenager uses slang that no teenager, including King when he was a teenager, has ever used, except it’s not about that somehow. We’re supposed to believe that this ancient old man who refers to earning money as “folding green” is just a regular teenager and pay attention to the rest of the story, where he’s inexplicably befriending an old man, except the old man is actually an old man and not an old man masquerading as a teenager.

Anyway, it’s bad and I’m tired and I’m a shitty dad and somehow I have to go to work again tomorrow and I kind of want a redo on the last couple of days.

Well, shit

Had a great time at the party yesterday— not that that was a surprise, mind you– but we didn’t get home until nearly midnight and pretty much collapsed into bed and died, and as of right now (4:36 PM) I haven’t managed to shower yet. Oh, and we got a text from birthday mom that the birthday girl woke up with mild cold symptoms and promptly tested positive for Covid.

Super.

My son doesn’t start school until Friday, and my wife had already taken the week off, so technically in a world where someone in the house has to have Covid, this would be a pretty good week for one of them to catch it. My wife had it in January; the boy hasn’t caught it yet. Me? School starts Wednesday, and tomorrow I’m expected to be at a meeting with every single other teacher in the district. Plus, despite having done it once before (*) I really don’t know how to write sub plans for the first Goddamn day of school, much less the first few.

So, yeah, I’m going to be testing tonight, and we’ll see how that works out. If I’m negative and unsymptomatic I’ll go ahead and go to the thing tomorrow, but I think I’m gonna mask up all week no matter what happens, just for shits and giggles. We’re all vaccinated to the gills and I should still have some antibodies left over from having it in May, but I really don’t love the school year starting off like this.

(*) The boy’s birthday is August 23rd. I attended parent/teacher night right after he was born and really enjoyed the looks on people’s faces when I told them I wouldn’t be there for the first two days of school (confused, angry) and then how they changed when I told them it was because I’d just become a father. The difference is at that school we had an experienced building sub who knew how the place worked and how I wanted my classroom run. Here we’re going to have teacher coverage, which is not going to be the same thing at all.

In which I almost died but I didn’t so it’s funny instead

The shower in our bathroom is a two-piece affair, with an overhead rainwater-style showerhead and a second handheld one that’s mounted on a grab bar and fully adjustable. I generally keep both running for the entire time I’m showering, and the handheld gets used as a handheld quite a bit as well, because I am a fat man and as a fat man I have nooks and crannies and such a thing makes the whole hygiene process a lot more complete. There’s also a bench in the shower, which technically was put in there to be sat on but which I mostly use as a way to make my feet and legs easier to wash.

Well, today I was finishing that process up and managed to somehow drop the wand, and a lot of things went wrong very quickly. The first thing I did was to look straight down, as one might expect from someone who had just dropped something. Unfortunately, and I don’t think I could have done this again if my life depended on it, I managed to drop the thing in such a way that it landed pointing directly up. Which means that, while balancing semi-precariously on one foot, I dropped the shower head, started a little bit at the loud noise when it hit the tile floor, had time to think oh, shit, I hope I didn’t break anything, then looked down, to be surprised by a rather intense blast of water coming up from the floor and directly into my face.

Telling this story, I feel like it shouldn’t have surprised me to get water in my face while showering, but the direction was unexpected, y’know? You don’t expect the floor to spray you when you’re showering, unless you’re in a much more complicated shower than I was in.

And my surprised reaction to that led directly to being flat on my ass in the shower a second or two later, wondering what the hell had just happened. I then, in rapid succession, went from ow to did I break anything to did I break part of the shower to it would be super to explain what had happened if I’d landed on the shower head, because no one would ever believe that story, ever.

And that led to a mental apology to my wife, because if I had managed to break a bone on the way down– I’m not quite old enough to be worried about breaking a hip in a fall or anything but who the hell knows– my son was in the house but it was going to be several hours until he noticed he hadn’t seen me in a while, and my phone wasn’t going to be reachable without crawling across the shower, and one way or another there is no way I’m allowing any EMTs in the bathroom with me until I’ve managed to put some underwear on, which was also not especially reachable, so I’d probably have just decided to die instead.

But none of that happened, so I thought Okay, there’s today’s blog post sorted, dragged myself up to my feet and finished my shower.

The end.

Before I forget

Hosea showed up to class this morning in a new mask, if in fact I’m actually allowed to use the word “mask” to describe a cut-up sock. Because he had a cut-up sock on his face. When I gave him a new mask from my stash and told him to put it on, he asked me why he needed it.

“Because you have a sock on your face, Hosea,” I said.

“No I don’t,” he said. (Remember, reflexively denying anything is a big part of whatever is wrong with this kid.)

“Yes, you do,” I said. “You are not wearing a sock on your face at school. Put the mask on.”

There then followed a ten-second stare down while I stood there holding the mask, at which point he said “Fine,” took it, and put it on. I don’t know what happened to the sock.


I was going to tell a whole story here about a bit of delivery nonsense involving UPS delivery of my son’s new phone– yeah, that’s a thing that’s happened now– but I no longer have the energy for the entire story so I’ll just tell the important parts: I had to redirect the phone to a UPS location because Verizon insisted on a signature and they weren’t going to be delivering while anyone was home. They did not give me a choice of locations, and directed me to their main distribution center, which is out past the airport, which you should understand to mean far away from everything. I got an email that said it was there and waiting for me.

When I got there yesterday, this sign was on the door:

You may note several possibly relevant pieces of information missing from the sign.

Despite that, the door opened as I was standing there trying to decide what to do and someone let me in, telling me she hoped she didn’t get in trouble for letting me in. She then told me that my package was still on a truck, despite the email that I’d gotten, and that it would be ready today. Okay, fine. Are you sure it’s not going to get redirected? No, it won’t be, but if it is, you’ll get an email.

Oh.

I did not get an email. When I got there today, this had happened:

The story ends with me getting the phone, which was indeed at that location, behind the caution tape and the locked door, but … well, imagine trying to explain this to customer service robots over the phone. I was moments away from my nuclear method of reaching a human when stuck in customer service robot hell (start swearing and yelling racial epithets into the phone; believe me, these systems recognize profanity) when the door opened and half a dozen UPS employees poured out, all carrying various broken pieces of wood, and threw everything into a nearby dumpster, an act that provoked a surprising amount of rejoicing on their parts. Then the lady I’d spoken with yesterday recognized me, ushered me past the caution tape and past the locked door with the “don’t come in here” sign, gave me my package, and sent me on my way.

I swear everything in this post is true, and I dare you to make any of it make any fucking sense.