(no subject)

What Is Your Battle Cry?

Zang! Who is that, sprinting along the cliffs! It is Aries_jordan, hands clutching a bladed baseball bat! She cries ominously:

"Blood and souls for my dark lord! Man, that's some good coffee!"

Find out!
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Weird Dream Channel

My family and I were visiting a carnival owned and operated by caprine in a landscape of Lovecraftian horror -- a marshy wasteland on a dark and overcast night. The carnival looked rickety and makeshift, as if Caprine had to put it together out of stuff she had lying around the house, but it was full of sudden and terrifying surprises and traps. Inside the haunted house, there was a "ride" that was nothing but a hallway with a slippery floor that you could slide across in your socks, or glide along on an office chair. But at the far end was a thing like a combination of a Venus flytrap and an Alien egg, which would turn inside out and engulf you with a loud snap as soon as you got there. I thought it was mechanical, until it started complaining because I wouldn't let Autumn go down the hallway. There was also a path cut into the side of a steep mountain made out of several million tons of modeling clay that Autumn and I climbed. When we were halfway up and couldn't go anywhere except up or down the path because the cliff was too steep on both sides, a horde of small Lovecraftian monsters attacked. Each one was only the size of a miniature Dachshund. I was stuck defending the path with one hand because the other was wrapped around Autumn to keep her safe behind me. As each little monster came up -- fortunately one at at time -- I grabbed it by the neck, shook it hard and threw it over the cliff.

* * *

Possibly as a follow-up to the dream in which I was forcibly recruited into an army fighting an intergalactic war -- I was in an army fighting an intergalactic war against some lizard-like aliens. Apparently we were losing, but this seemed odd to me, because I was armed with a machine gun and the lizards had no weapons at all. I ran around, took cover, and shot lizards efficiently -- they died after three or four bullets, with no blood, mess, or screaming as if it were a computer game. Then word came down that we were surrendering, so I shrugged and handed my gun to the nearest lizard, eager to see what would happen next. Oddly, I was taken into a classroom and given a seat in the back. A lizard teacher was giving a lecture to lizard students on a subject I felt curious about. However, I was also very tired and wanted to take a nap, so I asked the teacher -- "Excuse me, could you tell me why I'm here? Am I supposed to be learning something, or am I going to be an object lesson, or is this just a convenient place to put me for awhile? I just need to know if I should be paying attention." I woke up without getting an answer.

In despair I turn to thee, o Intrawebs

Since May, when I tapered off Lexipro, the antidepressant I took for six years before that, I have been suffering a variety of withdrawal symptoms, but the only one that is STILL with me after four freakin' months is the insomnia.  My typical night now goes: bed at 9:30-10 pm, toss and turn until midnight, move to the couch, toss and turn another half-hour or so, doze/sleep until 4 am., then toss and turn until 6 am when I give up.  Here is what I've tried so far:

1) Stopped taking Wellbutrin, the replacement antidpressant -- Some improvement, in that 2-3 hours of sleep became 4 or 5.
2) Omega-3 -- Eliminated "brain buzz" but had no effect on insomnia.
3) L-theanine -- Made it worse.
4) Caffeine -- Reduction to 1/3 of normal intake had no effect.
5) Alcohol -- I don't normally drink.  A single drink at 4 pm had no effect.  Eliminating it had no effect.
6) Chamomile pills -- no effect.
7) Electrolyte pills -- Reduced restless leg syndrome, but no effect on insomnia.
8) Exercise -- I already get 45-60 minutes per day.  Perhaps some variation in the routine or schedule?
9) Diet -- Unaware of what change might help.
10) Hot bath -- Made it worse.
11) Sex -- Slight improvement when combined with fatigue, but not a practical treatment.
12) Sleeping alone -- Some improvement, but not enough and causes other stresses.
13) Exhaustion -- Normal sleep occurs every 4-5 nights.

I do not want to take another prescription drug unless there is absolutely no other alternative.  Does anyone have any suggestions before I give up and call the doctor who put me on #*@%ing Lexapro in the first place?

(no subject)

On one level, I really like this Bruno Mars song:

To give me all your love is all I ever asked
'Cause what you don't understand is

I'd catch a grenade for ya
Throw my hand on a blade for ya
I'd jump in front of a train for ya
You know I'd do anything for ya

I would go through all this pain
Take a bullet straight through my brain
Yes, I would die for you, baby
But you won't do the same

Compare with this heavily edited one by the Fabulous Thunderbirds:

I would walk two miles on my, hands and knees
ain't no doubt about it, baby, it's you I aim to please
I'd wrestle with a lion and a, grizzly bear
it's my life baby but, I don't care

for you baby I would, swim the sea
nothin' I'd do for you that's too, tough for me
I'd put out a burnin' building with a, shovel and dirt
and not even worry about, getting hurt

lain to buy my burnin' money, that I've earned
and not even worry about, gettin' burned
I'd climb the empire state, fight Mohamad Ali
just to have you baby, close to me

Yeah, so on one level, I'm responding to the pathos.  But on another, I'm laughing my ass off.  Because these guys never say, "I would have a long, honest conversation about our relationship for you."  Instead, they are willing to do just about anything guaranteed to END the relationship.  Seriously, guys?  Who the hell asked you to kill yourself?  And women, listen carefully: a guy who says any of this isn't saying how much he loves you, he's saying how much he wants out.  But he wants it to be your fault because you didn't love him enough.

Notes on Captain America TFA

1) The Red Skull looks MUCH SCARIER with Hugo Weaving's face.

2) Cap -- you are standing on top of a speeding car, trying to stop the bad guy's plane before it takes off.  The bad guy's plane has all of its propellers in back for some reason, probably for that cool Art Deco look.  You have a virtually indestructible shield.  The spinning propeller is RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU!  The shield!  The propeller!  Right there!  Jeez, do I have to spell it out?

3) Cap is sweet.  I mean, totally, knock your socks off innocent and decent and moral and brave and compassionate and modest and self-sacrificing and -- and on and on.  I can't wait to see how the chemistry works in the Avengers, with two blowhard egomaniacs (Iron Man and Thor) and one genuine hero.

4) Similarly, I hope, hope, hope that the movie shows poor Steve Rogers coping with the future shock.

4) BTW there was A WOMAN in the original Avengers, remember?  Janet van Dyne, the Wasp?  Okay, she was an annoying character.  I think she was put in there to BE annoying and keep uppity wimmins from demanding female characters ("We HAVE one, see?") but at least she was there.  Come on, people, this is the second decade of the new millennium!

Interview Meme

I am being questioned by alchemi.

1. What is your favorite thing about motherhood?

A) My kid. B) Finding out that MY mother wasn't omniscient. C) A sense that nothing I used to think was earth-shatteringly important really is.

2. What is the status of the book? What do you like best about it?

85% done. What I like best... it's pretty funny in places. I enjoy reading it.

3. Given that even before the budgets went fully to shit, the government seemed terrible about paying you... would you still recommend your job as passionately (although I acknowledge it is not a job most people would choose for the money)?

It is not a job most LAWYERS would choose for the money. I have yet to meet anyone without a degree who wouldn't kill for a job at home for the hourly amount I make. Right now, it isn't the money that's bothering me. It's the isolation, and the fact that my clients and I never win. It really saps my morale.

4. On the whole, have things in the United States changed for the better or the worse since your childhood? Why?

I was not capable of judging "things" in the United States when I was a child. The world was a much more wonderful, magical, hopeful place back then, but that was my perception, not any objective reality. I did, however, have the impression that liberals and conservatives were just as much at each others' throats then as they are now. I think there was a cooling-off period in the late 80s and 90s that everyone is now thinking of as "the good old days."

5. Should I read George R. R. Martin? If not, who should I read?

You should, then tell me if I should. :D

More prognostication

You asked: Would I be happier and more productive in an office with a partner?

The Basis:
A pretty waitress presents a halved avocado in both hands, her position hinting at other pleasures.
Meaning: You will soon receive an excellent offer.

The Situation:
A long line of cars snakes around the block outside a gas station, waiting to fill up. The posted price is ridiculously high.
Meaning: Have patience. The resources you need are available, though the process of getting them is frustrating.

The Outcome:
Tangles, reversed
Brilliant red raspberries gleam from deep within a knotty tangle of bushes and vines. A butterfly sits on one berry.
Meaning: You are making things more complicated than they need to be.

You may ask another question.

Reading from The Crowdsource Tarot.


Bin Laden

On the one hand, I am glad they finally got the SOB, and that they got him on Obama's watch.

On the other, while I realize that giving him a trial would have been expensive, extremely difficult, and probably pointless, it was hypocritical and dangerous for Obama to say that "Justice has been done."

I have no doubt it was an assassination.  It may have been necessary; it certainly was deserved, but it's not justice, it's retribution.