Saturday, September 15, 2018

Dream: Blossoming Oak Trees and Flat Tire Service

I’m in the backyard of the house I grew up in, but now my wife and I live there.  The massive oak trees that tower above the house in the backyard have blossoms, like large, solid-colored pansies in lavender and indigo.

I call to my wife who’s indoors.  She comes out to see it.  I suggest that we take a picture from the front of our house and send it to her mother.  The blossoms are too high to take a cutting for indoors.  But I see one that fell on the ground, so I pick it up.  But it’s not a blossom at all.  It’s a weed that’s on top of a load of dog poop.

I get in the car and start it so I can drive to the front of the house.  But then I realize how silly that is, so I park the car, backing in against the house under the master bedroom window so I can walk around to the front.  But I notice that when I put the car into park, the transmission doesn’t lock.  The car continues to roll.  I point this out to my wife.  As well, I hear a grinding sound from the rear at the end of the maneuver.  So when I get out of the car I circle around to look at the rear passenger side wheel.  A thin rim of rusty metal is sticking out al around where the tire meets the rim.  I try to pound it back into place with the back of my fist.  But I also notice that the tire is flat.  The other rear tire also is flat.

Since it’s Saturday, I decide that I’ll have to hurry and remove both wheels so as to drive with them in the other car to have them repaired at the Honda dealership before it closes.

But as I start to remove the wheels, the car slowly transforms into something a lot smaller and resembling something like a carpet cleaner.

I’m at the Honda dealership now.  The “car” is in a carpeted office rather than a repair bay.  I explain the problem to the manager of the repair department.  He calls in a mechanic who takes a look and then goes away.  [This part is a bit foggy.]

Now a female mechanic has been assigned to the car.  She asks me where the car is, so I point in the direction of the office.  She doesn’t believe me that it's in an office.  So she goes looking in the direction of the repair bays.  I decide to bring the car to her.  Although the car is easily picked up like a consumer-grade carpet cleaner, it’s in several pieces, so I can’t carry all of it in two hands.

I pick up the main part of it as well as the front wheels.  Now the mechanic and I are in a reception area of the dealership.  She’s blonde and wearing a white uniform.  I also see my wife’s best friend Lisa there.  Lisa is talking on a landline telephone that has an extremely long coiled cord.  She’s also wearing white.  She has a small, glittering, heart-shaped sticker on her left check.  She does not see me or acknowledge, and I refrain from saying "hi" because she's on the phone.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Dream: Visiting the NYC Work Location

I’m in New York City visiting an office / residential building.  One or more floors of the building is occupied by my employer, an international company that I just started to work for.  The IEEE occupies the fifth floor.  I’m primarily here for work, but I also think I should visit IEEE and meet some people while I’m here.

I’m walking in a hallway of the building, not really paying attention to where I am.  I go through a glass door and a large blue parrot with white or light grey underbelly flies through it in the opposite direction.   I suddenly realize that I'm in the hotel / residential part of the building, and I assume that the parrot is someone’s pet that escaped.  There are glass doors at the end of the hall – the entrance to the gift shop.  I turn around and head back to the office areas.

I walk out the main front doors and see a cellphone on the pavement of the parking lot.  It has separated from the fall, so I pick up the pieces, which include the back cover, the battery and the SIMM card.  I know I should probably bring it back inside, but having just left, I don’t feel like going back in.  So I continue walking toward the street where there’s an open-air cafe.  Fortunately I see a high-level administrative assistant walking briskly away from the building, so I show it to her.  She wants to know where I found it.  She draws a diagram of the parking lot on a piece of lined parper.  I show her on the diagram how it was in the main aisle of the parking lot, behind the third car.  She identifies the parking spot as JP’s, a “Chief” executive, so she seems willing to take the phone in case it’s his.

I start wondering about the long drive back home, especially about what time I should leave in order to avoid lots of traffic.  (There’s really no traffic-free time to leave NYC, but any time close to “rush hour” would be especially bad.)  I keep seeing a large analog clock that reads 6pm, an especially bad time to leave.  It’s puzzling because it appears to be midday.  But then I notice that the clock appears on a very large TV screen, and it’s part of a commercial for a medication called Xarelto.  So it’s really much earlier than that.

I walk over to the outdoor dining area of a pub, which is behind the large building.  At one round table I see three young folks that I know because we once took a class together.  I’m happy to see them, and the table seats four, so it looks like a great place to sit for a while.  But I see that they’re done with their meals, so I decide to just say “hi” and walk on by so that they don’t feel obligated to stay with me when my food eventually arrives.  After all it’s lunch time, and I’m sure they’re on a lunch break from their jobs, so they won’t be able to linger.  I see an older man who’s alone.  (He’s older than those folks, but about my age, I suppose.)  I sit down at his table, and we start chatting.  He mentions that he used to turn his garden over every Spring before planting, but now he no longer does so because experts say it’s bad for a garden.  I agree with him and say that I, too, used to turn over my garden, but I stopped.  Then I go into an explanation of why it’s bad.  It has to do with fungi.  There’s a huge underground network of mycelium that gets damaged by heavy-handed shoveling.  (But I can’t think of the word “mycelium” and I either mumble it or say “mycology”.)  I explain how the mycelium process the minerals in the soil and provide plants with nourishment (as I’ve read in an excerpt of the research of Paul Stamets).  I wonder if I’m annoying or boring the other man – I seem to be monopolizing the conversation.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

An Interview With Square Peg

James Lipton, host of the cable TV show "Inside the Actors Studio", gives his guests the following list of ten questions. I thought it would be fun if I tried to answer them...
  1. What is your favorite word?
  2. What is your least favorite word?
  3. What turns you on?
  4. What turns you off?
  5. What sound or noise do you love?
  6. What sound or noise do you hate?
  7. What is your favorite curse word?
  8. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
  9. What profession would you not like to do?
  10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

  1. I can't decide between "fortuitous" and "serendipity" as my favorite word. As they are akin, I choose to answer with both.
  2. I don't have a least favorite word, and I'm not willing scour my soul to figure it out.
  3. Kindness, altruism, fairness "turns me on" in a sense, no matter whether I am fortuitous enough to receive it or whether I can spread it.
  4. Greed is abhorrent to me.
  5. The trickling of a babbling brook is pleasing to me, but even better is the smacking sound my four cats make when they eat breakfast together at dawn.  It's better because the cats are getting replenished, whereas the water just goes somewhere.
  6. Loud, discordant noises upset me.  Active construction sites are my least favorite places.
  7. My favorite curse word changes over time.  Currently I'm using "Crappazoids" as one might say "Crap" when getting to the traffic light just as it turns red.  If I want to call some asshole something bad, I would use either "F*ckwad" or "F*ckhead".  Oh, wait, "asshole" is curse-like, too, isn't it?
  8. I had tremendous difficulty in high school deciding what to do after graduation.  A personality test that I took in the office of the Guidance Counselor suggested that I should go to a college in Oregon to study Forestry.  I think it would've been a good career choice, at least in terms of being fulfilling.  Whether there was money in it, I have no idea.  I'm currently an Electrical Engineer.
  9. There are financial folks that negotiate mergers between two companies.  The mergers usually involve firing hundreds of people just to make wealthy people wealthier and to show continued growth on a balance sheet.  Those financial folks are detestable.  It's another matter if one of the companies is failing and the merger strengthens it and saves jobs, though.
  10. I would like to hear God (or Whoever) say this to me, "I'm so very sorry for all the shit I put you through."

It's your turn, please let me know your answers!

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Wednesday Weigh-In 20180426

It's possible that putting oatmeal on certain skin conditions will make things worse. Sure oatmeal is soothing, but it can also feed populations of yeast, which might be the cause of the rash.

Waist = 43.25"
Height = 5' 9"

  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Balance Body Composition Bath Scale
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Wednesday Weigh-In 20180411

I'm focusing on getting at least seven hours of sleep each night and at least 64 ounces of water during the day.

Waist = 42.75"
Height = 5' 9"

  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Balance Body Composition Bath Scale
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Wednesday Weigh-In 20180405

I'm trying to include a serving of vegetable with each meal. Today for breakfast I included sauerkraut with my sausage. I had asparagus in the fridge, but I didn't feel like cleaning it and then steaming it. Also, I've started to take vitamins again: D3, Multi, plus a fish oil.

Waist = 42.75"
Height = 5' 9"

  1. Wikipedia BMI page
  2. Balance Body Composition Bath Scale
  3. Javascript must be enabled to view the data.

Monday, April 2, 2018

How I Treat Stubborn Dandruff

When large portions of skin began lifting off my scalp, I tried the usual dandruff shampoos such as products that contain pyrithione zinc or selenium sulfide, the latter of which seemed to work marginally better.  But I wasn’t satisfied with the results, so I went to see a dermatologist.

The doctor described it vaguely as yeast and as an adult form of cradle cap and prescribed Ketoconazole 2% shampoo.  It worked amazingly well.  However, the condition also affected my eyebrows, and it was difficult to apply the shampoo there without also getting some in my eyes.  Also the condition would flare up again and again, and I’d have to treat it again and again.

I did some research into “cradle cap” and found that the itchiness I would experience was not a symptom.  I decided to forget about Ketoconazole and treat it like eczema.

I swapped shampoo for Dove Sensitive Skin Beauty Bar, which I was using on my face anyway.  And afterwards, I applied an eczema lotion such as Gold Bond Eczema Relief lotion or the equivalent store brand.  Finally (and probably most importantly) I cut back on ingesting dairy products and sugar.

This regimen works very well, although occasionally I shampoo a second time with the selenium sulfide shampoo, especially if I fail to stick to a healthy diet.

Commercial lotions for eczema are expensive.  They contain 2% colloidal oatmeal, along with a great deal of other suspicious chemicals.  As oatmeal is quite inexpensive, I wonder if I can just let some oatmeal soak in water overnight and then apply that water to my scalp to rinse out the Dove soap.  So the next step is to try the “oatmeal soak water rinse” to see if I can eliminate the lotion.

I do see a recipe for a DIY oatmeal shampoo, but that seems like too much work at this time.