17.3.17

Have I got a deal for you

Thanks to the delayed winter storms and Spring Break and a never-ending cold, I've been watching more tv than usual.  And because I've been a politics junkie for a while, much of that it stuff like MSNBC and C-SPAN, so I'm getting a lot of what's going on in Washington.  And... it's depressing, isn't it?  No matter who you voted for, you should be depressed by the tone of conversation, the lack of presidential demeanor and the spate of "fake news"/"alternative facts"/Tweetstorms pouring out of that city.

Yesterday's press conference was a case-in-point.  Reporters trying to get a clear answer from the Press Secretary, who actually gave one of the worst storytime readings I've ever heard (and I've judged the NYC storytelling competition, so I have some expertise in this).  They did a great job of not laughing in his face but it was close.  It's fascinating theatre.  Crap politics, but you can't have both, right?  (at least, you can't these days)

One thing that I think is getting lost in all the budget bother: our president claims to be a Master Negotiator.  Everything he does is framed that way, and most of his campaign promises were along the lines of "better deal" or "renegotiate".  The Draconian nature of this budget and his government reorganization may be just that, a position that simply can't be defended or that will pass but will serve as a point from which to negotiate.  And then, when the budget or government size his advisors (because I simply can't believe that Trump himself actually has a clue about any of this) actually want, it can be TRUMPeted (see what I did there?) as a HUGE WIN.  #MAGA.  Etc.

I'm reminded of the episode of Star Trek TNG where Scotty tells LaForge that he always padded the time needed for a repair so when it came in well under that prediction, Kirk would think he (Scotty) was a genius.


Lost in their calculations is that the way this is playing out means many people will feel as though no one has their interests at heart, from the president to their representatives.  Also lost is the fact that while ultimately I may send less to Washington, I'll be sending more to Boston (and you, dear readers, will be sending more to Albany, Sacramento, Austin, etc.) as programs fall on the shoulders of state governments and those taxes will rise.  And rise.  As our president says, Sad!

5.3.17

Sliding back and forth

Since Thanksgiving, things have been... difficult.  The fact that we spent part of that day at the animal ER saying goodbye to Mallory should have been a clue that there was more to come:

  • December 5 my eyesight suddenly took an odd turn, with a massively inflamed optic nerve in my left eye.  Things are still not back to what the neuro-ophthalmologist calls "baseline" but she did warn me that it could take 3-6 months.  And no, no guarantee that it will never recur.  
  • Early February, a migraine led to a norovirus which morphed into a head cold that is still (still!) plaguing me.  Even a wonderful shopping trip (new Lamy pen, new Hermes scarf) and high tea to celebrate turning 54 didn't help... on the other hand, doing all that with a fever probably wasn't the best plan I've ever had.  Every time I think it's all gone, it rears its ugly sinus-filled coughing head.  
  • Two weeks ago, BoyCat was running to the litter box ever few minutes.  I know that that means - a possible case of FUS (now known as FLUTD).  Back to the local animal ER.  No blockage.  The same pattern yesterday.  But this time his bloodwork said Urinary Tract Infection.  So today we're heading back for an antibiotic shot.  Oh, and BoyCat?  Really, really, really hates being touched, let alone going to the vet.  Should make for a fun afternoon.
The good news is that I'm reading for two book awards (Alex and the new Excellence in Science Fiction for Children award).  My staff is doing amazing work.  And in four days Spring Break starts.  Over two weeks to slide forward a bit.  Wish me luck.