Otterday! And Open Thread.

Today’s otter was taken by BlueRidgeKitties at Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina, USA.

Otter on rocks, standing up very very tall.

Please feel free to use this thread to natter about anything your heart desires. Is there anything great happening in your life? Anything you want to get off your chest? Reading a good book (or a bad one)? Anything in the news that you’d like to discuss? What have you created lately? Commiserations, felicitations, temptations, contemplations, speculations?

Categories: Life

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39 replies

  1. An interesting plug I saw at Feministe: A Bride’s Story (Central Asia is not a region I often see used as a setting).

  2. Anyone out there interested in doing a cartoon with me? I can’t draw cartoons (or I haven’t tried but I’d be extremely surprised if I could) but I just had an idea for a tongue-in-cheek feminist ‘superhero’. It’s making me laugh quite a bit.

  3. I meant to post this a few hours ago, but my daughter would like to make it known that there are definitely better ways to be woken up from a sleep-in than having the cat toss its dead mouse at you because you have failed to sit up and admire it as required by the loud brag-style meows.

  4. *like* Our cat brought a dead mouse to the door the other day, and was terribly affronted when I wouldn’t let her in.
    I have just spent the last two hours shoe shopping with my daughters. I’m exhausted. They are full of energy. The mission was at least successful, bar finding a pair of pretty shoes to go with Ms Twelve’s pretty dress for her school social. That’s going to an after school activity sometime this week. Oh joy.

  5. My grandmother died on Friday (“after a long illness” in death-notice style). Separately, two different and sad things happened to friends too. Good week to be an otter instead!

  6. I presume even otters have their bad weeks, Mary. I hope the next week is an improvement for you all, and that you and your relatives all had the time to farewell your grandmother fondly before she passed.

  7. For those with cable, the sequel series to Upstairs Downstairs (discussed back in April on Tansy Roberts’ guest Friday Hoyden post about Jean Marsh) starts on UKTV tonight.

  8. I used to have a cat who brought live mice into the house and let them go in front of us. Apparently we were grown up enough to learn to catch and kill our own food. Or something. He’d then watch as we chased the mouse.
    Today I made some quite small brown glass beads, it was rather tricky getting them to match in size and shape. (Yes, they’re for your necklace tigtog, I’m getting there!)
    I am about to dose up on coffee and try to work out where I’ve gone wrong with the new tablet weaving pattern I’m trying.

    • Wow, I never thought of you actually making those replacement beads, Mim! *lacks crafting imagination*
      FP, how exhilarating/trepidatious it all must be.

  9. Oh poor mini-tigtog. Yuck!
    @Mary: sorry you’re having a shitful time of it at the moment.
    I often think I’d like to be a cow: nothing much seems to faze them…or a cat. All that time napping in the sun sounds allright to me.
    This weekend is all about the essay and tomorrow’s appointment with the Dr to discuss possible anxiety medication.
    Having to read Abbott calling for ‘another’ ‘intervention’ and reading about him NOW being behind OPAL petrol as an important issue when he didn’t give a toss as health minister is really grating my cheese.
    But I am remembering to take breaks and see friends and enjoy family etc: tonight miniTBO is cooking chicken drumsticks with a monster salad and miniFP is cooking chocolate peanut butter cookies which he keeps telling me are MUCH healthier than other cookies. On account of the peanuts. And the brown sugar. 🙂
    Larger-sized TBOs/FPs will be dusting and packing books and making merry with updating the cashflow spreadsheets for the moving period, cos that’s how we roll.

  10. Wow, yeah, I misread that at first as ‘bought’ some beads because my brain did not make sense of made some! That’s super cool!

  11. Yeah: I think this week work stuff and anxiety really over took the ‘house’ stuff. But having just mapped out cash flow from here on in and talking about the removalists etc it’s getting to be both exciting and ‘trepidatious’ again…

  12. Hugs for Mary.
    A family of magpies lives near me, and they often catch mice. Apparently only the front half is tasty, because they leave the rest, um, behind. There’s a trail of tiny mouse bums all down my street.
    I presume even otters have their bad weeks
    Say it isn’t so! Sometimes if I’m feeling bad, I like to think that the otters* had so much fun, they used up all the happy. And then I get to imagine otters having fun.
    *or otherwise woodland creature

  13. Thanks all.
    Re time to farewell, yes, although it was an illness with many crises. So, I guess a long farewell over several times, rather than everyone being able to say goodbye when death was very near; we just didn’t know. I suppose it’s all a form of farewell, just gentler and longer than the standard narrative allows for.

  14. I’m sorry, Mary. My grandmother is dying too. It could take a few days more, but I’m hoping it won’t. These things don’t fit into standard narratives. Sometimes we just have to bear witness.

  15. I’m so sorry, Mary. *Hugs*

  16. So sorry, Mary, that’s really sad. Many many hugs. And to the others aroundsabout who’re having difficult times at the mo. Winter is clearly having its effect…

  17. So sad about doctor who being finished for the next few months 😦

  18. Oh – I just finished reading the Handmaid’s Tale (and totally loved it) – can anyone tell me if the movie is worth watching? I’d love to share the story with some non-readers that I know.

  19. I haven’t read the book or seen the movie so can’t be of any assistance there alien tea, though perhaps the book can go on my holiday reading list.
    So after a long time of insisting that I had anxious feelings but not anxiety requiring medication and depressed feelings but not depression I have done my research into anxiety conditions, and particularly into chronic pain associated with anxiety. I’ve found a medication that claims to help with generalised anxiety, panic attacks and particularly headaches/muscle cramps. I’m hoping that with exercise and CBT I might be able to get rid of/minimise the three-to-four day excruciating headaches that have been part of my life for fourteen years, and minimise the sort and severity of panic I experience at work (and who knows possibly even alter the low self esteem that continues to tell me there is no possible way my partner could desire me?).
    Have spoken at length to TBO about it and decided that given things are going so well with us that this might be the perfect time to try it out and see how it goes. If it doesn’t work well you know…the headaches will still be there and we can try something else?

  20. Good for you, FP, I hope you get the results you want.

    Now I seem to have put myself at the top of virtually every current thread, my self-important work is done, and I shall to bed.

  21. Trying to sustain patience with a fourteen year old who *just so happens* to forget to write down his homework, and then *just so happens* to be unable to remember the name of any kid in his maths class who could tell him what chapter they were supposed to work on, and then *just so happens* to discover on the evening before returning to school this incomplete record and that there is far too much for one evening. He then decides to carry on like a complete turdburger over being given the most generous/lenient of consequences and somehow manages to act like all of this is my fault and some sort of plot to make him miserable rather than an ongoing aspect of his inattention to his schoolwork. So…standard 14 year old stuff I suppose. But SWEET JIMMINY CRICKETS it taxes my considerable powers of patience and positive parenting!!

  22. FP, that sounds horribly, horribly familiar. We’re currently dealing with a 14 yr old’s history assignment that is apparently going to simply fade into the ether if it is ignored completely enough. There is much resentment over us disrupting the intense ignoring.

  23. Hehe…sigh. Well at least I am in company. I sentenced him to doing some chores and then reading a book for his research project. I just caught him with the book covering the ipod on which he was watching something. Argh!!

  24. @FP and Mim
    In my day I had to hid a book inside my homework book. I did have a small handheld game, but it beeped and would have given me away…

  25. Heh, Mindy, yes I was *quite* the slacker. I have this incredible *guilt* though, that as miniFP has Aspergers I am *responsible* or *responsible-er* for remembering/managing: I don’t keep quite the eye on it that I tell myself other parents do and I’ve got my head down with my own study so when he pulls this stuff on a long weekend Monday night I start in on a guilt trip about how I always let this happen, blah blah…though I’d never think like that about other parents. Anyway: hopefully he’ll begin to take it somewhat seriously (she says hopefully). And when we all move in I’ll be able to tag TBO in on the nagging/reminding. Also the consequence has been no more video games and sitting and reading for the project and even though he’s quite enjoying it I suspect it might help him to remember next time. I can live in hope anyway…

  26. I’m just wondering if anyone else who’s used anti-depressives have found themselves feeling quite ‘reactive’ for the first little while? I feel fine most of the day but am a little surprised by the vehemence of my responses when irritated.

  27. Yes. It’s like a mental equivalent of… I’m used to everything being heavy all the time, and suddenly something is lighter than I expect and I lift it with too much force and almost throw it.
    Mood swings are a symptom of my depression too, but I do see differences with my meds, mostly when it comes to “extroverty feelings” rather than “introverty ones.”

  28. Yes, that is what it feels like SN! I’m actually feeling a bit like that generally: a bit too ‘light and floaty’ compared to what I’m used to. Normally if I felt like this I would panic that I wouldn’t be able to concentrate, so wouldn’t get my work done, so would fail or get fired from my job, but at the moment if I sit and read and focus then I am actually fine, which I didn’t used to be if I was having issues with concentration…
    Yes, a while ago I was seriously worried about the extent of my mood swings, but I was doing a fair bit of work on it and it hasn’t happened like that for a long while, so when I felt a bit like that again I was worried it was an exacerbation of that tendency, but if I had to guess I’d say it’s more that I’m feeling spacy and tired and doing the ‘whoops too much force’ thing while I get used to it. Thanks! A bit scary without feedback from people who’ve ‘Been there, done that’.

  29. Back at’cha.

  30. There’s several things going down in my workplace at present, and one of my colleagues sent out a general e-mail today, in response to some other e-mails. Reading it, I felt hugely concerned. She’s on the verge of collapse, and I’m scared for her. I can see the signs, and I know them all too well, because it’s exactly what I did myself back in 2004.
    I did one immediate practical thing: I knocked on her door, and offered help with school pick-ups over the next week or so (her daughter is at the same school as mine). But my help won’t address the real problem, which is overwork.
    Our boss may not respond… and now I’m wondering what to do. Most immediately, get her out of her office for a five minute walk around the building tomorrow. But what next? Universities are intensely hierarchical, and appealing above your own lord’s head can be hugely problematic. Even worse, my husband is a lord, ‘though not mine, so I could create huge problems for him. Added to all this, the particular stressor at present has come from an overlord, and it is unnecessary one, designed to enhance his own glory. And while I agonise, my colleague could collapse. I’m hoping that our boss will respond to her e-mail, but if there is none, then maybe I should do something. I’m just not quite sure what.

  31. @Deborah That sounds really, really hard 😦 I hope the other people around her are as perceptive and caring as you and that the right things happen.

  32. Maybe she could do a list of what she’s expected to do and ask her immediate boss which ones aren’t important so she can focus on the new stressor? Might work if you have a reasonable boss, but of course no one wants others to think they can’t cope with their workload.
    At least you noticed. I’m sure that made a big difference for her.

  33. Just saw the new anti-plain-packaging ad. So subtle! What could the huge “nanny” badge and the bookshelves of binders possibly mean? I just don’t know!

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