Dec. 13th, 2016

drwex: (VNV)
Yeah, I do have brain space for some things other than politics. I haven't updated since Thanksgiving, so here are a bunch of scattered points.

Arisia is eating lots of my brain space. We are responsible for publications this year, without the aid of a person in charge of the Souvenir Book nor a publications coordinator. So my DH and I are trying to do those jobs and I kind of screwed it up, a bit. But I did find us a printer who can work with our (tighter-than-usual this year) deadlines and won't cost us a lot more money to do so. Fortunately, my DH both has layout software available and has some experience at this because I would be utterly lost if I had to do this on my own.

Earlier this month I went to the housewarming for [livejournal.com profile] tamidon and [livejournal.com profile] feste_sylvain out in Notlob. Great gathering of people, neat space that's clearly still in development (because you know that kitchen is going to evolve) and apparently a great location for them to do what they want to be doing. As usual at these things I ate too much tasty food and my allergies eventually failed to deal with the fact that there's a cat in residence.

Speaking of allergies, this year has been another miserable one. Freeze came late and even now the leaf molds are still rampaging. I remember many years when I could stop taking my antihistamines after the first hard freeze killed the ragweed. Not so much anymore. I also had really bad nosebleeds this year when trying to supplement with nasal steroids. Had to lay off that pdq.

D&D has been happening with great irregularity and reasonable amounts of fun. I keep thinking that the party will overrun the stuff I've prepared and they always end up going more slowly than expected. Some of this is due to being higher level characters, which means having more spells and abilities they can select from and some of it is due to this party's ability to turn even the simplest trap into a clown circus.

This past Saturday I went to another friend's memorial. I was not as close to this friend as I was to the most recent other and yet this one hit me harder. I think because many more of the people eulogizing our departed comrade were more distraught and more heartfelt. I mentioned on a chat group having to bow out of a social activity for this memorial and discovered that the world really is a teeny tiny place because someone in that group knew our lost friend and turns out that gaming-friend-of-mine actually knows rather a LOT of people in my social circle and it's quite likely we'd bumped into each other at several interesting places about 10 or so years ago and just not noticed each other.

The memorial left me raw and stumbling despite its grace and despite seeing people there I don't often see. Such events bring a measure of closure and do allow for some forms of good-bye but each one also marks an accumulated weight on my spirit and 2016 has been a really heavy year in that respect. I'd be just fine with a chance to set those weights down, but there's also this time of year in general.

I have a form of SAD and it has been with me pretty constantly the last three weeks. Intermittently beforehand, as usual, but the days between Thanksgiving and New Year's are days I push through by force of will most of the time. But that's what I need to be doing, so I do it.

I'm currently driving a big-ass rental car because my VW is in the shop being repaired. I got pretty badly scraped by a random trailer full of yardwork equipment being towed behind some unmarked white Ford F150. On my own street, no less. I had just pulled out of my parking space when the guy came alongside me and in making a left turn his trailer kind of didn't turn and so ended up scraping up the side of my car. I pulled off the road like you're supposed to and got out to exchange info with the other guy, only to see him drive off. Since it was a hit-and-run I have to eat the deductible, which sucks. But in all other ways Liberty Mutual has been pretty good by me and nobody was hurt, so there's that.

The irony of getting lifetime-guaranteed repairs on a car I want to sell back to Volkswagen as soon as I can is amusing but it's part of the package. I have submitted my claim to VW and it's being processed; no idea when I'll hear anything but I was told they wouldn't start processing the claim until Dec 15 so there's that.

We did look at cars - after a bunch of online reading I've come to the realization that I'm never going to get the trifecta again (good mileage, good performance, good carry capacity). VW got it by cheating, so I'm not buying from them again. Surprisingly, I ended up liking the Prius V. It's roomy but way more performant than Prius vehicles were three years ago. And the mileage is good. I'd never take the think racing but it doesn't strain going up hills nor accelerating into highway traffic, and if it does it has a button for that. I'm not going to like giving up driving stick but it feels like this vehicle is probably the closest thing to what I want. I also test-drove the automatic-transmission Subaru Forester. I loved my Forester and wouldn't mind having another one except the mileage is utter shite. The salesman talked up their new CVT, which I'd always wanted as a prerequisite for giving up manual. However, driving it was uncomfortable. It's aggressive, loud, and it feels like it's constantly grabbing and jerking. On the highway it's OK, but any sort of stop-and-go traffic would be unpleasant. I am likely to test a manual Forester anyway but I am not impressed so far.

Despite my calendar seeming to be chock-full I've only managed one personal social thing lately: [livejournal.com profile] silentq continued our infrequent series of drinks at new places. This time we tried a new place in HSQ, The Hourly Oyster House. It was OK, but the drinks were not inspiring. I'm hankering to go back to some of the places we've been that had bigger and more interesting drink lists and try new things at familiar places so we'll likely do that. But after Arisia.

So that's what's up with me - what's up with you?

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