odds & ends…not very inspired

1. there has been something wrong with my back for several weeks now. there is always something wrong with it, because i am missing vertebrae & i have scoliosis & i am riddled with arthritis & several of my vertebrae are disintegrating. but this is a new wrong. there’s some kind of weird bump mid-spine that hurts in a new & horrible way that has nothing to do with the usual muscle aches & sclerotic agonies to which i have grown accustomed. poking around on internet diagnostic websites (not a great idea), i discovered that it could be symptomatic of a weird benign tumor often found in rheumatoid arthritis patients, which tallies with all my other RA symptoms (save for actual diagnostic lab work). it could also possibly be a slipped desk or stress fracture. who the fuck knows? i am seeing a chiropractor tomorrow (recommended by my therapist–sometimes she has weird boundary issues, as in, she has none) in the hopes that a dude who looks at backs all day will be able to tell me if i need to rush off & see a doctor. & who knows? maybe he can just do some adjustments & fix the issue.

2. i went running yesterday for the first time ever. i definitely understand why people like it. i hated it for the first five minutes, but then i got into the zone. only for ten more minutes because, hey, i’ve never done this before & sometimes just walking is a challenge. but it was pretty awesome. & no knee pain!

3. this bodes well for my plan to run up & down the steps of the philadelphia art museum every day that i live there while amanda waits on the sidewalk playing the “rocky” song on a boombox.

4. i really want to take charlotte with me to philadelphia. the more i think about it, the less comfortable i am leaving her in the care of cat sitters for six weeks. i hope i can find a good solution to this problem, so that charlotte, amanda, jared, & myself are all happy & not vomiting from anxiety & loneliness.

5. has anyone but me heard of this bookswim thing? it’s like netflix for books, minus the instant viewing feature (not that i’d want to read a book on a computer). i can’t decide if it’s a good idea or not. the marketing materials emphasize its utility for folks who “don’t have time” to go to the library, which begs the question, who the fuck doesn’t have time to go to the library? maybe people who live in the suburbs & have really long commutes? but what about weekends? i am confused. i live a ten-minute walk from the local library & go there all the time, so you wouldn’t think i’d even consider paying $24 a month to rent books from these bookswim people. but they do have a few books my library doesn’t have. & my library has MANY books that bookswim doesn’t have (because they are new & seem to mostly be focusing on bestsellers). i am intrigued, but conflicted. does a service like this compete with libraries? the prevalence of netflix spelled doom for the health of actual video rental stores. i doubt bookswim will ever achieve the success of netflix, because i don’t think most people really read that much, but i don’t feel great about undercutting the library. thoughts?

6. lots of books these days on how to be happy & whether or not you can actually try to be happy. the happiness project is another stunt journalism book in which a woman spends one year of her life following all kinds of different advice on achieving happiness & sees where it gets her. it’s next on my to-read list, because i tend to read most things that pique my curiosity a little bit. i also put ariel gore’s new book on “happiness & women” on hold at the library. what’s up with all this happiness literature? maybe it’s always been a popular topic & i am just now noticing it, for whatever personal reasons?

7. didn’t catch “top model” tonight because ailecia wasn’t home to aid & abet me with her tivo. i’ll get to it soon & try to do a recap. i can’t wait until they unload some of the chaff–i realized i mised up tatianna & anslee in my last post. anslee takes surprisingly good photographs, but she seems to have the same relationship with me that cycle six mollie sue back in the day had with tyra: mollie who? or, remember that time that tyra forgot to give cycle three nicole feedback at panel? good times. (ps–ailecia, if you stumble across this, i am not just using you for your TV. there is also the fact that you often have free cigarettes lying around…jay kay!)

8. last week, jared & i were talking about the TV show “dexter” & he said, “do you think he ever wonders about why he kills people that kill people to show that killing people is wrong?” it made me laugh. i finished watching season four the other day (after being alerted to its presence in various free forums online). i don’t see how he is going to make it through another season without finally being found out, & how the fuck is that going to go down? (speculation that is three months late: sorry.)

9. i have a cat-sitting gig for the upstairs neighbor. her cat is extremely friendly. not as cute as charlotte, but who is? apparently, the neighbor has decided to give up her apartment when her lease expires due to expense & such forth. sad for her, but awesome for me. i got to check it out a little when i went up there to check on the cat & his food situation (why do i always sit for cats whose names i don’t know? jared said it’s because only we are crazy enough to refer to charlotte by her name constantly, as if she is a person, but i don’t know), & dude. i want this apartment. the bathroom doesn’t have a door (it has a curtain instead), but it is otherwise completely adorable. & far more appropriate for putting up the occasional houseguest. my current apartment is fine & the price is excellent, but i’m always looking for an upgrade when it comes to living situations. this is why i have managed to move 32 times in only thirty years of living.

10. please enjoy this very sweet, touching video about a lion being reunited with humans who looked after it when it was a cub (warning: if you have a heart, you will cry…also, mute the sound unless you love aerosmith):

now dry your eyes & prepare to laugh at this hilarious video of an urban wildlife news report out of cleveland (ohio embarrasses me once again):

Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

4 thoughts on “odds & ends…not very inspired

  1. Damn you, Ciara. I hadn’t seen that lion video in years. I had to go to the bathroom & wash my eye make-up off because it was burning the crap out of my eyes after that.

    1. i had never seen the lion video before. so cute! so sweet! it’s not quite as sweet with the sound off, because it’s not as obvious that people are not being mauled in the absence of uplifting music, but still.

  2. As a library student, yeah, the BookSwim thing pisses me off. I wish that libraries would see the success of BookSwim and would institute a similar program. It would be fantastic if a consortium of libraries in a state or an area could get together and start a BookSwim-like service, but unfortunately, many, if not all, library systems are losing money and having their budget slashed, which leads to a smaller, less usable collection, which leads to less patronage.

    Anyway, you note that your library doesn’t have certain books – have you tried Interlibrary loan? I’m a grad student so I use a university library and we have this really fabulous interlibrary system online where I can quickly request my embarrassing teen lit reads without any human interaction. More libraries should have that.

    1. i haven’t used interlibrary loan in lawrence yet because their system is (i feel) needlessly complicated. you have to fill out A LOT of information & it’s not automated. i used to use interlibrary loan all the time in boston, but lawrence isn’t big enough to have more than one branch, so i guess their interlibrary system is, like, all the libraries in kansas. which is a lot of libraries, but it’s a lot of really small, regional libraries. & i’m not a student, so i can’t use the university library. i can get jared to check books out for me there, but then i have to tell jared what to check out & he has to actually follow through (he can be a little forgetful sometimes).

      but…no big deal. the local library has most of what i want to read. if i have to fill out sisyphean paperwork occasionally to request books from kansas city, i can handle it. but this is definitely another thing i miss about boston.

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