H50 Steve "wtf?"

Clearly I am not allowed to imply I'm sleeping better.

My brain pulled an energizer bunny on me last night, wide awake, bouncing around like it wasn't night at all:

Squirell spinning in bowl

I tried every trick I know to get it to relax and go to sleep, but nooooooo. Nothing worked, until I realised three a.m. was approaching on the clock with no end in sight, I took a pill and that knocked me out for a few hours.

My god, brain, why?? It's not like you don't need sleep, on the contrary, you need it more than ordinary humans, so why this energetic fest? It's an aspect of my mind I'll never quite understand.

And the advice generally given to insomniacs --if you are not at all sleepy, get up and do other things-- is dangerous because I am, to my horror when discovering this, perfectly capable of falling asleep standing up (and then falling over) ten minutes after not feeling sleepy at all. So no, better not.

I'm seriously happy science has invented knock out sleeping pills, though.
H50 Steve eyebrows


I live in a very noisy place with noisy neighbours, which is fine until they're noisy at one in the morning (I went to her door three times, but she keeps it down for a week and then starts back up again) so I needed a solution. I discovered the joys of extension cords for ear buds, so I can enjoy my tv at whatever volume without anyone else being bothered, and without noise from outside bothering me, and I discovered that the world has invented super-soft sleep earplugs, little green torpedo shaped things that crinkle and expand in your ear when you put them in.


Of course, my brain has now decided this means it will sleep deeper, and dream. Every. Fucking. Night. This would be less annoying if it weren't for the fact that it hasn't done that with this regularity since I first got insomnia at twenty, and if it wasn't the most unoriginal brain ever that likes to be really obvious in turning my daytime stresses into nighttime adventures. Mind you, it doesn't invent nightmares, just the sort of dreams where you relive things and go, "Thanks. I didn't need that," in the morning, only half remembered, etc. It's probably just me, though. Other people would be grateful for what is clearly deeper sleep, huh? :P

I must update my .gif collection, but even so, I have just worked a three day weekend and thanks to the coronation and Jesus ascending to heaven once upon a time, I have the next five days off. Glorious. I shall be like so:

Baby meerkat stretching on log
H50 Danny isn't sure about this

A clear sign that I'm becoming middle aged...

(Though thankfully not like my parents.)

Supermarket price hikes. I know the economy sucks and shit, dude, I work in it, it didn't escape my notice, but WTF price hikes?! I remember when price hikes meant five cents extra on my fave chocolate bar, but I'm seeing price hikes on ordinary groceries like juice and cheese of 20, 30, and even 50 cents.

A little background: I live in a big city, at the edge of downtown, which is not a cheap area but cheaper than some (and certainly cheaper than the suburbs, which I can't afford at all.) In the city, there is one major supermarket chain dominating the place -- my local shopping street, not of extraordinary length, sports three(!) of its branches; downtown, where I work, it sports another three within one street. The only alternative in my local street is a super expensive organic supermarket; downtown, two organic supermarkets and one M&S style fresh market in a department store are the only competition.

These price hikes are pushing my grocery bill up by euros at a time, euros that I have in a pinch but means I must cut back on other things, things I also enjoy and would like to spend money on. For financial reasons, I either pick up groceries within walking distance or when I've already travelled somewhere (say, to work), which limits my access to grocery stores overall. I have to be in the suburbs once every two weeks, where there are affordable, ordinary supermarkets, but I'm limited by what I can carry (don't have a car) and by what will keep for two weeks.

All of this before I get started on the fact that I am single, paid well enough that I have some money left over at the end of the month, reasonably mobile, usually in sufficient spoons to take care of basic tasks, and able to spot these price hikes and compare. I dread to think the effect this has on the elderly, disabled people, the poor, etc.

All of this also before I get started on the fact that the cheapest way too feed yourself is on calorie rich food with little to no nutritional value, whereas the so oft touted and much lauded "healthy foods" are well out of the price range of anyone shopping on a budget. (Example: apple juice now costs me 1.01 p/1l, while I can buy cola from the same brand at 0.99 p/1.5l, while sliced white bread sets me back 0.69 for half a loaf, sliced brown bread with seeds just cost me 1.08 in the cheap supermarket. Don't get me started on the cost of fresh vegetables or meat. Fuck your health craze.)

I can afford a few luxuries, I can afford to try and save up to buy a flat, I can afford to buy the occasional novel and take the tram to work instead of biking. I'd like to keep being able to afford those things, especially since nothing will send the economy down the drain faster than people who have no money to spend.

So yeah, I'm becoming middle aged. Though thankfully not middle class.

In the interest of full disclosure, I was born and raised suburban white middle class, and that's not an upbringing you can truly escape.
H50 Steve "wtf?"

Dear Customer,

When you walk into my shop five minutes (or even less) before closing, and the closing times are both the same city wide and clearly posted, you better be fucking grateful if I let you in. In fact, the only condition on which I'll let you in is that you already know what you need, and you just need to fetch it and pay.

Anyone who dislikes this policy, or stops me midway through the fetching-and-paying process to ask a question after all, turn out to need more things, or start a fucking conversation about the weather or the state of the Phillipines (no, really!) had better understand you feel my wrath in the form of a sternly worded, "Excuse me, but you'll have to come back tomorrow. No, really, we are closing. No, I will not sell you something else. Goodnight."

You see, I don't get paid overtime. So unless (and I have made this exception a few times) you make it clear you want to spend an obscene amount of money that means my lack of paid overtime is compensated by a heap of commission, I'm not going to be nice. I might smile, but I'm not going to be nice.

This is because you are rude. Now go away.
H50 "great a room full of people"

Adventures in grocery shopping.

Things not to do after a super busy day at work: make withdrawals from the ATM, apparently. Instead of going for 'choose amount' my finger went for 'quick withdrawal' and I got way too much money that was earmarked for my rent.

Yeah, thankfully I have savings and live in the modern age of online banking, so it's no great drama even though the first of the month is coming up (when my rent needs paying) and I don't get paid monthly and thus I'm nearly out of money. Yeah.

Self, you do manage to fail at adulthood. This just makes me wonder if my parents did these sorts of things and simply didn't share their embarrassment with me (very likely) or that they always had enough money and therefore it wouldn't mean a major deal to them if they did (most likely.)

Also, bizarrely, the supermarket started closing while I was still in it and now I can't tell if they changed their opening hours or if I never shop there on Sundays. Twilight zone moment. Either way, it seemed bizarre since the place was absolutely jam packed with shoppers and the queues were gigantic, but it's badly run as it is and just suffers from having no competition that can afford to sit in the biggest shopping street downtown.

They were, by the way, still out of my favourite cheese and I had to settle for store brand, which is less yummy and more expensive, but I have a lunch guest coming over tomorrow so I couldn't not buy cheese. I'm just sharing this because it's one of those annoyances that a captive shopper suffers from.

Don't get me started on price hikes. (Who pays €1.60 for a litre of grape juice? Who are you people? We should all take a stand, for serious.)
(gen) "Wow are you stupid!"

(no subject)

BBC News this morning starts on some twaddle about the importance of breast feeding, goes on to say, "But there is another, important thing women can do to ensure their newborn's health."

Okay, nice scaremongering there. What is it?

Actually, the report/discussion is on a medical study suggesting the umbilical cord shouldn't be cut as soon as it is. And they're not really sure about it to begin with.

So what the fuck does this have to do with women giving birth? Nada. it's about doctors.

I think I'm getting feminism fatigue. I give up.
H50 Steve

H50 ep 3.20: I'm out.

This won't be a great surprise to most, but for now, I'm done with this show. I don't know if I'll come back to it or not, whether I'll watch the end of the season some other time, but for now, I have to quit watching something that is just making me unhappy.

It's no great secret that I'm a Steve/Danny shipper and it's not great secret that I'm a Steve girl, and I can't watch this show if Steve/Cath is so obviously the end game. I tried to like Cath, I tried to live with the character as part of the cast, but I'm done. The actress playing her didn't help herself by vicariously insulting me and my friends, and Lenkov's tacit endorsement didn't help, either. I don't know if that changed anything for me, but it happened, and well.

If this makes me sexist, then I'm sexist. I don't want Steve dating someone who is present all the time. I like procedurals because they usually don't have this. I don't like my leading man with a woman unless I'm fannish about that pairing, and I don't know, if that's sexism, I'm sexist, because I can't change how I feel. I tried; it isn't happening. So for now, I'm out.

Anyone for whom I was betaing: I've no problem betaing anything that doesn't have Cath in it, but I obviously won't be up to date with canon past 3.20. It's your own call; I'll understand completely if you prefer to go with someone else.

I have and will be doing some unfollowing on twitter/tumblr, just for my own peace of mind. In a few weeks, or after the finale or something, I'll probably pop back in and reconnect. I'll also come back online in gchat this week, though I might hug my red status for a bit; if you'd like to talk to me, just send me an email or poke me, and I'll probably be around. I'm sorry, guys. I really thought I'd be here till the end, but I didn't see this coming.
(gen) "we hate all the same people"

Today is apparently World Autism Day...

Since five minutes on twitter's hashtags on this topic made me feel like people were talking about me without consulting me, consider this my contribution.

Wanna know about autism? Ask away. I can't tell you what everyone with the disorder experiences, but I can tell you what it's like for me. Or we can talk about the weather or your favourite flowers or something, that's okay, too. As long as I don't have to see any more "helpful" people talking to families whose relatives "suffer" from it.
H50 Steve "orange doesn't become me"

So this blogging thing is supposed to be about my life, right?

Remember when I got promoted? Like, six months ago now (September 21st, because I remember everything in my life based on a fannish calendar.) Anyways. I got promoted, and I moved branches because no one who is trained in a branch can be promoted within its hierarchy, with good reason, so I moved. Well, I had some issues with the Boss, culminating in a long conversation and a Plan, but I never really got enthusiastic about it.

The team I inherited was a difficult bunch, and I never really got them to perform well. Staff management isn't my strong suit (dude, autistic here) and the things I am good at, the number crunching, the efficiency, the myriad of paperwork we're required to file, are the same thing Boss was good at (minus the efficiency, my god.) Both the team and he made me feel at times like I was a nagging mother trying to get them to clean their rooms, which they would then do for two weeks and lose interest again. I never really got to do all the things I wanted to do when I started there, and over time, I let things slide and dropped the ball.

It helps not to do so in front of your supervisor, and then follow that up the next week with doing it in front of the company CEO.

Yeah. Oops. My supervisor already asked me what I thought of my job and when I wasn't one hundred percent enthusiastic about it, she wanted to know why. I indicated some of my problems and she asked me what I wanted her to do about it, and I said, transfer me or him. We're never going to be a stellar team, we don't have matching strengths. She said she'd think about it and take it into account in the next round of reorganisations, scheduled six months from now.

Yeah, that's not what happened. Instead I was asked to come in early last week Thursday, and, typical of Boss, he didn't tell me why or anything, so I blithely walked in to a meeting with him and our supervisor utterly unprepared. Thankfully, I don't intimidate easily, so I managed to hold my own throughout the "I'm disappointed in your performance" conversation that we had. (I liked the way he slouched in his seat the whole time and didn't contribute much. This is on par with the feedback I've had from him the whole six months I've worked for him.) Since I was disappointed in my own performance, I wasn't surprised. What I was surprised by was the supervisor's announcement. "I'm going to transfer you," she said, "on March 24th."

Oooookay. That's unexpected.

But, here's the kicker. I'm going back to my old job, only with my new job title and pay and conditions. There's a new boss in charge there, and she and I having matching strengths (she's terrible at paperwork and efficiency, fabulous at staff management and training.) We had a meeting on the same day I got the news and she said all kinds of sensible things that I agreed with. I told her not to be shy about criticism and that I wanted to learn, and my old team is already making noises about being happy to have me back (the half of it that's still there from when I left, mind.) So I'm actually really excited about this change, even though, well, I screwed up and that's not, generally, a good thing. It's made me realise, though, that I'd been shifting my boundaries and standards because I was tired of the nagging mother role it pushed me into, and made me realise how much Boss was just not giving a fuck about what I said or what he needed to do for me.

Oh, bonus point: there was one person in the old team whom I hated, and she hated me. We were always polite to each other, but we've tried to get each other demoted, etc. So I mentioned that that might be a conflict, and supervisor said, "Oh, I'm transferring her too. I thought you two used to work together and would maybe collude against the new manager. But you don't get along? What a surprise." Oh, woman, how little you know me. Then again, once upon a time, you judged me by the Nuts bar I ate, so. I don't hold you in that high esteem, but I will smile and wave.