WALK, FORREST, WALK!

So remember back on June 1st when I made that running total dynamic bar thing that compared how my yearly mileage totals accumulated for each year I’ve lived in Calgary? (This thing?)

Well, I updated it to include 2020 now.

I didn’t even really consider trying to beat 2017’s mileage until about half way through the year. Then it was a push to make it happen – which it did at the very start of November.

Kinda cool!

Walking 2020

Happy New Year!

As always, January 1st is dedicated to reviewing last year’s walking mileage. So let’s get to it! But before we do, a quick disclaimer: I am including my running mileage in all of these totals, too, but I’m just going to refer to everything as walking mileage because it’s easier.

K? K.

ONWARD!

Here are my walking stats for January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.

Total number of walks: 347
Total mileage: 5,160
Total number of steps: 11,687,919
Total calories burned: 355,903
Total walking time (minutes): 78,727.87 [that’s about 54.67 days]
Average speed (mph) per walk: 3.80

5,160 miles is approximately the great circle distance between Juneau, AK and Barcelona, Spain or between Naples, Italy and Cape Town, South Africa.

And for anyone who’s keeping track (probably no one), yes, this is a new yearly mileage record. I beat 2017’s record of 5,100 by 60 miles, which isn’t a fantastic jump in distance or anything, but it is a new record.

So yay!

2020 Music?!?!?!?!?

Happy last day of 2020!

I’d say good riddance, but I suspect 2021 will be just as much of a garbage fest (if not worse), so weeeeee!

Anyway, this is the first year since my Decade of Music project ended, so I have not downloaded a new song for every day of the year and thus can’t give you a full summary of the year’s songs to the same extent that I’ve been doing since 2010.

But I can give you my favorite songs (and maybe favorite music vids?) of the selection that I did download this year.

Yeah, let’s do that.

Top 5 Favorite Songs

Blinding Lights by The Weeknd
This is THE song of 2020. This is also, as I mentioned in a blog back in May, my pandemic song. I heard it just as COVID was starting to burn through Canada at the start of all this madness – back when no one knew how bad it would get – and I still get that little pang of anxiety I associate with that feeling whenever I hear the start of this song.
(Still love it, though.)

Sogno di volare (The Dream of Flight) by Christopher Tin
This is an amazing, beautiful, soul-lifting song. I mentioned this one in an earlier blog, too, talking about how I felt like I’d heard it before somewhere long ago.

FloriDada by Animal Collective
This song is so freaking weird and so freaking cool and so freaking WTF that I have to like it. Also, don’t look up the music video unless you want to have multiple seizures.

Bummerland by AJR
I love the energy of this song. AJR does great things with drum beats.

DVNO by Justice
The bass pounds my ears and it hurts so good.

Top 5 Favorite Music Videos

DVNO by Justice

Logo parodies/homages with smooth transitions + killer song = YAY

Bummerland by AJR

The only thing better than an AJR song is an AJR song with an accompanying fun music video.

Dynamite by BTS

I am definitely not “army” as this is the only BTS song I have (I heard it in a commercial and had to look it up, haha), but I love the song and I love how fun the video is. Also, Jung Ho-seok (dude in the “OBEY” shirt/red shirt) has an awesome smile.

365 by Katy Perry

Y’all know I like music videos that tell a story.

The Rest of My Days by S+C+A+R+R

Hypnotic dancing!

Runnnnnnn

If you know me in real life, I probably have never struck you as someone who would ever say they loved running (especially if you knew me pre-Vancouver).

But I LOVE RUNNING.

I’m addicted to it now. I’d go 14-ish miles every day if I could. The only thing stopping me is the thought that I do NOT want to go through another injury, either with my knee or with something else. So I’ll stick with a few times a week with the 16-mile walks in between.

But holy freaking crap, running feels so good.

It’s felt even better these past few weeks. I don’t know if that’s my body finally just getting used to 14 running miles the same way it got used to 15/16 walking miles or if the colder weather is just that much easier for me to run in.

It’s so relaxing and so freeing and so empowering.

If any of my readers run and are looking for good running clothes, I’d suggest Baleaf. I bought a pair of running leggings from them and a running jacket/coat thingy and they’ve both become my favorite things to run in. The leggings actually stay up around my waist (my other pairs are all too big around the waist and the Baleaf ones are just tight enough to stay in place but aren’t too tight) and the jacket has zippable pockets to hold gloves/music player, little thumb holes in the sleeves, and has a small fleece lining which makes it good for running in the 20-25 degrees range.

Anyway.

RUNNING!

Jazzy Update!

So it’s been a week since we took Jazzy in to get her eye removed and she’s recovering very well! The worst thing about the whole process for her has been the cone she has to wear, I think, but even that’s something she’s getting used to. Here’s a current picture of her. It’s blurry because she doesn’t like to sit still, haha.

She’s acting very normally given the circumstances, which makes me feel very optimistic about them being able to remove the cone at her check-up.

Now we just have to hope that the same thing doesn’t happen to her other eye. We’ve got medication for it now, though, so hopefully that will help prevent this from happening again.

Book Review: On the Road (Kerouac)

Have I read this before: Nope. I don’t think I’d ever even considered reading this one; it was just one on my list that consistently got overlooked.  

Review: Yeah, so this is a completely different style of storytelling than what I’ve been reading so far on my list, haha. I think it took me a bit to get into it because of that, but once I got past the first 50 or so pages, I was pretty invested in the characters and seeing what all their traveling back and forth across the US would lead to. I really liked how unsettled everyone was, especially Dean. Like, even when he was “planted” in a city, he was still unsettled. The impulsivity is interesting and, sometimes, enviable.

Favorite part: I like how Sal keeps attributing the weirdness of San Francisco to it being “on the edge of the continent” or the “edge of America” so anything goes. I think that’s a really poetic way of describing it.

Rating: 6/10

RESOLUTIONS 2020

‘Sup, nerds?

So it’s December 27th, which has become the day on which I review my resolutions for the current year, figure out how badly I did at keeping them, and then set up resolutions for next year that will likely be kept just as badly.

READY??????

A review of the 2020 resolutions:

  • ACCOMPLISHED: The blogs. Yup. And I actually posted them this year! HOLY CRAP
  • ACCOMPLISHED: Walk at least 4,500 miles. I’m actually getting at least 5,000, so that’s pretty cool. A review of my walking miles will come, as always, on January 1st.
  • ACCOMPLISHED: Do something with my writing. Finally.
  • ACCOMPLISHED: Run a half-marathon. I guess technically this should go in the “sort of accomplished” category since it was a virtual version of the Calgary half-marathon and not an in-person thing, but let’s be honest – that was really the only way to do it this year. So I’m counting it.
  • FAILED: Run a marathon. Wasn’t able to get my distances far enough fast enough because I’m a loser.
  • ACCOMPLISHED: Win NaNoWriMo 2020. Done! And I’m actually still working on it, which is new for me.
  • FAILED: Get my blogs in physical form. I didn’t even touch this project this year. Go me.
  • FAILED: Get a body composition analysis. Okay, to be fair, I had one scheduled for the beginning of April, but pandemic.
  • FAILED: I’m going to try to be more consistent in posting these blogs, but pffft. I mass-posted twice, that totally doesn’t count.
  • FAILED: I’m also going to keep trying to be better for Nate. I’m still the worst. And probably worse than normal because I’m not handling this pandemic very well, let’s just say that.

THAT’S A LOT OF FAILURES I’LL TELL YA WHAT

How about some resolutions for 2021?

  • The blogs, as usual.
  • Try to be more consistent with actually posting my blogs. No more of this “once every 500 days” nonsense. Maybe…every few months at most?
  • Walk at least 4,800 miles. I could probably try for 5,000 again, but who knows what nonsense 2021 will bring and I think 4,800 should be reachable.
  • Run twice weekly whenever possible.
  • Keep working on my 2020 NaNoWriMo. I’ve somehow managed to keep working on it after November ended this year, which is unheard of for me. But I like the story even though it’s a dumb idea and I have no idea what to do with the ending at this point in time, so let’s keep truckin’.
  • Run a marathon. Hopefully this year I’ll be able to get my distance up to that point. It’d be nice to be able to do an in-person marathon, too (preferably the Calgary Marathon), but I seriously doubt we’ll be at that point with COVID come the end of May.
  • Win NaNoWriMo 2021. November is always the busiest month of the year, so LET’S THROW A NOVEL IN THERE TOO WHY NOT
  • Do stuff with my writing. What? Who knows. That’s part of the fun, I guess.
  • Try once again to get my blogs in a physical format. I really need to do this. I fear losing them, which would be losing almost 15 years of daily logs.
  • Revamp my “200 Books” list and keep reading fiction. Ever since I’ve gotten Kondle, I’ve had such an urge to read. It’s been quite a few years since I’ve had that urge. I think it’s because I feel like I can get any book I want whenever I want it and I don’t have to be limited to whatever measly selection the U of C library has (for whatever reason, it’s selection seems way worse than UI’s library) or how prepared I am to carry a chonking 600-page book around with me.
  • Respond to all the blog comments I’ve gotten over the past several years. I’m really bad at that, sorry.
  • Work out my arms. My legs are strong (from walking/running). My back is strong (from hauling tons of nonsense in my backpack when walking). My core is relatively strong (from walking/running/other stuff). My arms? Carrying a gallon of milk up from the car to the condo makes them burn like the center of the sun. I hate strength training so much, but I’d like to get my arms on par with the rest of my body.

I think that’s everything. I’ll add more if I think of anything.

SURVATRON 2020

The year is almost over. I’d be more excited about that if all the chaos and death and awfulness that started in 2020 actually ended with the year. But it won’t; it’ll drag into 2021 (and probably beyond) for who knows how long.

But hey, let’s do that end-of-year survey anyway just to reminisce about exactly how bad everything was!

What did you do in 2020 that you’d never done before?
Wear a mask in public?
Quarantine?
Fear for the lives of all my family and friends in the States?
I could go on.

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
There will soon be a blog post regarding this!

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes, at least one person.

Did anyone close to you die?
I don’t think so. My friends and family have been surprisingly untouched by COVID (as far as I know) and there have been no deaths due to it. Or to anything else.

What countries did you visit?
None. The land border has been closed for most of the year.

What would you like to have in 2021 that you lacked in 2020?
BITCH DON’T GET ME STARTED

What date from 2020 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
In this hellish year where all the days blend together into one mass of FUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK?
The day of the US election, I guess. And yes, I know it took dayS this year, but the day itself was pretty memorable for how freaking close the votes were. COME ON, PEOPLE

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Tenure-track!

What was your biggest failure?
Existing.

Did you suffer illness or injury?
No, surprisingly.

What was the best thing you bought?
Uhhhhhhhh either the treadmill, Kondle, or my sunglasses (though I think technically I bought those last year)

Where did most of your money go?
Dental work.

What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Absolutely nothing. Absolutely. Nothing.

What song will always remind you of 2020?
Blinding Lights by The Weeknd. It’s my pandemic song, yo.

What do you wish you’d done less of?
Bought frivolous stuff. Stress shopping is apparently a thing I do, unfortunately.

How will you be spending Christmas?
Christmas was a few days ago. We opened presents on the 24th, so we didn’t really do anything special on Christmas itself.

Did you fall in love in 2020?
stayed in love in 2020.

How many one-night stands?
Nada.

What was your favourite TV program?
I got back into Chicago Hope thanks to it being on YesTV for most of the year. PUT IT BACK, YESTV!

Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Nope.

What was the best book you read?
A Prayer for Owen Meany was fantastic.

What was your greatest musical discovery?
There were a few good ones this year. I’ll probably blog about them on the 31st as is tradition.

What was your favourite film of this year?
Movies weren’t a thing this year.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 32. I don’t remember what I did. That was pre-“COVID invades Canada” so I don’t remember it very well.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably satisfying?
HAHAHAHAHA NO PANDEMIC HAHAHAHAHA
Fuck this year.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2020?
Working from home in no pants?

What kept you sane?
Sanity wasn’t a thing this year.

Which celebrity/public figure(s) did you fancy the most?
Leibniz. Always and forever.

Who did you miss?
My mom.

Who was the best new person you met?
I didn’t meet anyone new.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2020:
Humans are idiots. I knew that already, but BOY HOWDY was it confirmed this year.

Fun Christmas Activities for 2020

  • Walking in the snow/cold
  • Wishing it wasn’t winter
  • Crying
  • Hating your life
  • Hating everything else

Freaking party time.

All Along the Water Tower

A visual representation of how we all feel at the end of 2020:

Empty, broken, and ready to fall over? WAIT, I FEEL LIKE THAT ALL THE TIME!

I love the sounds they make when they hit the ground. Very satisfying.

Also, side note to the guy who flipped me off while I was running because he got stalled in the snow as he stopped to let me cross the street: if you would have used your blinker like a courteous human being, I would have known you were going to turn down that side road and I would have stopped to let you go so that you could have kept up your momentum. But you didn’t use your blinker, so I figured you were just going straight and thus I kept up my speed to cross the street, thus causing you to have to stop. Not entirely my fault, bro.

Book Review: 1984 (Orwell)

Have I read this before: Yup. I want to say high school or the first year of college, but I actually have no idea. 

Review: This wasn’t quite as I remembered it, but was a good re-read. I love how so many ideas and concepts of this book are still used (Big Brother, 2 + 2 = 5, thoughtcrime, etc.). Hell, Muse has an album that mentions 1984 concepts throughout (“Resistance”). And we all know I love Muse.

I don’t really have too much to say about this one; it’s definitely a classic and one that I think most people have read. But if you haven’t, read it! It’s both terrifying and fascinating on a lot of different levels.

Favorite part: 

“He turned over toward the light and lay gazing into the glass paperweight. The inexhaustibly interesting thing was not the fragment of coral but the interior of the glass itself. There was such a depth of it, and yet it was almost as transparent as air. It was as though the surface of the glass had been the arch of the sky, enclosing a tiny world with its atmosphere complete.”

I just thought that was a particularly striking paragraph.

The interrogation/torture scenes at the end were also one of my favorite parts.

Rating: 6/10

Winter. Winter Never Changes.

Today we had to take Jazzy to the vet for her eye removal surgery. We had to be there around 8 AM.

And in true 2020 fashion, on the one day we had to leave the house, the weather did this:

That’s about nine (edit: 10.6) inches of snow in the non-drifts. But we had to get to the vet because the next open appointment for the surgery wasn’t until January 5th and her pain and light sensitivity have been getting worse by the day it seems.

So we braved the snow. Nate had to practically shovel us out of the parking lot and the roads were kind of iffy to get to the vet, but we made it. Then we got stuck in the vet parking lot. Then some guy helped push us free and we just parked on the street while I took Jazzy to the drop-off area. Then we had to make it back home. But rather than try to get back into our parking lot, Nate decided to park over at the hospital. This ended up being a good plan because he could get 24-hour parking for about $15, so we just left the car there, hiked back home (only about a half a mile, but through a lot of snow and wind), and waited for the vet to call to give us an update.

Jazzy’s surgery went very well. She did fine under the anesthesia and there were no complications. So around 4:00 PM we hiked back over to the hospital (after helping push a guy out of our parking lot, haha), drove back down to the vet, and picked up our girl.

She had a cone on to help prevent her from scratching at the stitches in her eye and she managed to get the cone off within three minutes of us leaving the vet (she wedged it on the circular indent in the top of the cat carrier and jerked her head forward to pop the clips open), so I had to watch her to make sure she didn’t start scratching on the way home.

We had to park back at the hospital because our lot wasn’t shoveled yet, so we had to carry her as gently as possible through the snow to get her home.

But once we got her home and out of the carrier, she immediately started purring and flopping…until we put the cone back on her. Then she was very disoriented and upset and started panicking every time she ran into something with the cone. Luckily they gave us some pain meds that are quite sedating, so we gave her one and she zonked out after a while. She actually seems okay about missing her eye, but she hates that cone. She’s got to wear it for two weeks, though, so that will be fun.

Edit: Nate trimmed the cone the next morning and it fits her much better. She can move around a lot more easily now and can get to her food and water. I don’t want to post a picture of her because the eye area still looks a little rough, but maybe once it starts healing I’ll give a visual update.

Poor girl.

Noooooooooo

They’re taking down the last of the four cranes at the Cancer Center.

I am FREAKING SAD.

As I mentioned in a blog earlier this year, those cranes had been over there since 2007. Three of them were disassembled in September, and now I guess it’s time for the fourth and last one to go.

I’ll miss you, son Crane #2.

SUCK IT, DOUBTERS

I just surpassed 5,000 walking miles for the year, and I did it one day sooner than I did in 2007, the last (and only) time I hit 5,000 walking miles.

So for everyone who didn’t think I could do it again, take THAT!

I’m also going to likely beat 2007’s total mileage of 5,100, too.

Ha.

VO2-The-Max!

Aloha. Let’s talk about my VO2 max.

According to this site, “VO2 max, also known as maximal oxygen uptake, is the measurement of the maximum amount of oxygen a person can utilize during intense exercise. It is a common measurement used to establish the aerobic endurance of an athlete prior to or during the course of training. It is one of several tests used to determine an athlete’s cardiovascular fitness and performance capacity.”

Typically, the more endurance sports/activities you do, you are more likely to have higher VO2 max scores. And of course, correlation does not equal causation, but there does tend to be, you know, correlation between these two things.

So what have my VO2 max scores been since the start of the year? Let’s see.

Ohhhh, okay. Random. Cool.

Note that there’s a break in the graph because I had to stitch together two different display screens from my Garmin app.

Of course, another disclaimer here is that I’m not getting my VO2 max professionally measured here; these readings are coming from my Garmin. But I would think any measurement error would be somewhat consistent across time, right?

I just find it weird that there seems to be no pattern whatsoever, and I bet if you looked at this you couldn’t be able to tell if I’d started seriously running at any point during the year and if I’d stopped seriously running at any point during the year.

(Serious 13+ mile runs twice a week started around the end of April I think; I have kept those up ever since, so there hasn’t been a stopping point.)

And like…I am very consistent with the type of exercise I do as well as the duration. It’s not like I’m doing dramatically different exercises on these days. I’m either a) running 14 miles or b) walking 16 miles. That’s basically it.

I also find it weird that I think my circulation has gotten worse since I started running, but that’s whatev.

Body, you’re strange.

Book Review: Main Street (Lewis)

Have I read this before: I don’t think so. When I chose this book I thought I’d read it in junior high as one of my first books off my list, but I feel like I certainly would have remembered this story if I had.  

Review: The alternate title for this should have been “An Anti-Tourism Pamphlet for the Small Town American Midwest.” I get that it’s a satirical take on small towns in the US, but holy crap. Lewis does do a good job of making Gopher Prairie (one of the said small towns) incredibly unappealing to Carol, the main character who came from a bigger city, but very homey and endearing to her husband, who is from the town. This was a very frustrating (but engaging) read because it’s hundreds of pages of Carol trying to better the town, the townspeople shutting down her ideas, Carol trying to conform to their ways, the townspeople shunning her because of where she came from, and this constant war she has with herself over feeling like she is basically losing every aspect of herself by being beaten down by the small town life (and trying to conform to it) and feeling guilty about wanting out and wanting to go back to the city.

Favorite part: As someone who grew up in a relatively small town (Moscow) and moved to a big city (Calgary), I really related to Will (Carol’s husband) upon returning to Gopher Prairie after an extended time away. He finds joy in the smallest, simplest changes about the town that he notices, like a new sign on a store or a neighbor’s new roof. I feel like I have that same sort of reaction every time I go back to Moscow, haha.

Rating: 7/10

DJ Earworm, you magnificent soul

This is so freaking cool.

I love that it’s an instrumental so that you can hear how the basic sounds of songs have evolved over the past 50 years.

I also love that once it hit the early 90s I was like “I KNOW MOST OF THESE YAY!”

Earworm is amazing.

2020 Absolutely Sucks

COVID? Yes, of course that’s the main reason.

But another reason came for us today after we took Jazzy to the vet/ophthalmologist for a follow-up on her previous appointment. Her right eye is responding to the meds we’re giving her and her inter-ocular pressure is back within the normal range in that eye. But her left eye has not responded; in fact, the pressure is higher.

So they recommended that the best option for Jazzy is to have her left eye surgically removed. The pressure will eventually cause her to go blind and will cause a good amount of pain in the meantime.

She will have the eye removed next Tuesday.

I guess we should be looking at the good in this in the sense that the bloodwork they did on her came back completely normal, so there’s no underlying condition like leukemia or diabetes causing the eye issues, but it still completely sucks. They think the cause of it might just be from a virus she had when she was younger (probably in the crappy living conditions she was in before we got her) that triggered some sort of auto-immune response where her immune system started treating that eye as a foreign body.

We’ll have to keep special watch on her right eye to make sure it doesn’t happen to that one as well, though there was no visible sign of issues in her left eye until we first saw that blurriness on the 27th (I checked other Jazzy pics I had on my phone; there was no blurriness prior to that day).
I feel really guilty about not taking her to the emergency vet that first night we noticed it now, but I’m not sure if that would have actually made any difference (except maybe getting her some painkillers and some treatment faster) given that her left eye isn’t responding to the meds at all.

2020 blows.

THE DECA-LIST 2020-STYLE

  • I’m 62.23 miles away from hitting the 5,000 mile mark for this year’s walking distance eeeeeeeeeeee!
  • I can’t imagine being a healthcare worker during all of this, especially someone who’s considered “frontline.” Don’t they just want to punch everybody at this point?
  • I hate winter. Hate, hate, hate it.
  • Nate and I watched Deadpool 2 the other day and there was a reference to how Rob Liefeld cannot draw feet. That made me re-read this article, which is still one of the funniest things I’ve ever found on the Tubes. “His pants are so uncomfortably tight that his groin is puckering into some sort of overachieving asterisk” is a fantastic sentence.
  • No, I will never stop referring to the internet as the Tubes. Fight me, Al Gore.
  • The only thing bad about the above article is that it reminds me of grad school at UBC, ‘cause I stumbled across it one day while I was avoiding work on my thesis.
  • GOD those two years were just terrible. I remember when they banished me to the Botany Annex building because they needed more room for the Personality students and figured “LOL the quant student is expendable, let’s throw her in a trash building with minimally-functioning heat and tiny windows, maybe she’ll just die in there.” It was always so cold and so dark and I spent most of my time pondering the consequences of just quitting the whole stupid program.
  • UGH now I’m sad.

End of list.

Hippity Huppity, I’m Feelin’ Uppity

I finally organized my earrings after having them in several chaotic piles around the house. Observe!

Yes, I have a lot of earrings. They’re the only type of jewelry that I wear. And the more ostentatious, the better.

(I know, I know, no one cares about any of this.)

Book Review: Look Homeward, Angel (Wolfe)

Have I read this before: Nope

Review: This is a very beautifully written and insightful coming of age story in the early 1900s. It’s long and covers a lot of the family’s history and Eugene’s growing up, but I like how it all works together and how it all is shown to shape who Eugene becomes when he finally leaves home. Also, the way it is written is very engaging and beautiful. Some of the descriptions used are so specific and perfect that they really stand out.

Favorite part: Ben’s death was particularly heartbreaking, because he’s built up (at least in my opinion) as a very sympathetic character and because of how close Eugene was to him. Also, a few phrases:

Gant trying to wake up his sons in the morning:
“‘When I was your age, I had milked four cows, done all the chores, and walked eight miles through the snow by this time.’
Indeed, when he described his early schooling, he furnished a landscape that was constantly three feet deep in snow, and frozen hard. He seemed never to have attended school save under polar conditions.

Ben, Eugene’s older brother, to Eugene after they have a fight over Eugene’s inability to let go of a woman he’d fallen in love with:
“‘There are a lot of bad days. There are a lot of good ones. You’ll forget. There are a lot of days. Let it go.’”

On Ben’s death:
“We can believe in the nothingness of life, we can believe in the nothingness of death and of life after death – but who can believe in the nothingness of Ben?”

Rating: 6/10

HEY YOU!

YES, YOU!

Are you thinking of traveling to see people this Christmas? Are you thinking of driving or flying or taking a bus somewhere?

If so, I have a tip for you:

DON’T
DO
IT

You are not immune to catching COVID, and you are especially not immune to spreading it to others, even if you don’t have symptoms.

The rules apply to you, just like they apply to everyone else. Do. Not. Travel.

Stay home.
Please.

Does it suck? Hell yeah it does. I haven’t seen my mom since the beginning of January, whereas in a normal year I would have seen her at least once over the summer and would probably be visiting her right now.

But it’s worth it to know that I’m choosing to actively try to prevent the spread of COVID by staying home. It’s worth it to know that I’m not going to inadvertently give my mom COVID and possibly cause harm to her or anyone else due to my inability to suck it up and not travel.

Is your family worth it? Are your friends worth it? Of course they are. But if you’re planning on traveling to visit them, you’re not treating them like they’re worth it.

So please.
Stay.
Home.

ZOMG MASHUP TIME

It’s here it’s here it’s here!

I live for these.

He used Blinding Lights as the main beat, which makes me SUPER HAPPY because that’s my top song of the year. I would have guessed Dynamite as the main beat, but I was wrong.

As usual.

I know I’m not doing my Decade of Music project anymore, but would y’all still like to see an end-of-the-year music recap?

(Does anyone care?)
(Does anyone even read this blog anymore?)

The Joy of Lego + The Bow

Things I learned today:

There is a Lego-building group that focuses on constructing landmark Calgary buildings.

It took Roy Nelson five years and about 8,500 pieces of Lego to build my favorite Calgary building, The Bow.

Here’s a side-by-side comparison:

(Actual building pic from here, Lego building pic from the site linked above)

Isn’t that a beautiful building? The fact that he’s got a giant Lego head as that wire mesh head statue is pretty awesome.

If I had money to spare to buy this, I totally would. I dig this kind of stuff.

The Jazz

So our sweet kitty is having eye issues. Back on November 27 (a Friday), I was playing with her by throwing her toy mouse at her as she sat in my chair, and I noticed in the sunlight that her left eye was blurry and her pupil was fairly dilated. Pic:

This was the first time I noticed it, so I told Nate about it when he got home and we decided to call our vet. Jazzy was just getting over pink eye in her right eye, which we had been giving her an ointment for. We figured that maybe whatever was going on with her left eye was its manifestation of pink eye as well. The vet said we could either take her to an emergency vet that was open 24/7 or we could try giving her the pink eye ointment in the left eye for a few days and see if that helped clear things up.

Speaking from hindsight, we should have probably taken her to the emergency vet. However, she was not acting any different than normal (like, not at all different. Still purring, flopping, playing, zooming around the house, eating, drinking, etc.) and wasn’t acting like she was in pain. We also were hesitant to take her to the emergency vet because a) she stresses like crazy when we put her in her carrier; b) the vet she would see would not be her usual vet and thus might stress her out more; c) at this point it was like 7 PM on a Friday evening and the emergency vet would probably just end up keeping her overnight or maybe even over the weekend – which would stress her out even more. So we went with the ointment.

But by that Monday, there didn’t appear to be much of a change in her eye, so we took her to our regular vet once we were able to get an appointment. She didn’t have the equipment to do a thorough eye exam, but again recommended the emergency vet because they did have an ophthalmologist that could take a look at her. So we took her there today.

They measured the pressure in both of her eyes and found it was elevated in both of them but more so in the left one. The ophthalmologist thought this increased pressure might be due to some inflammation they found in her eyes, so they gave us a bunch of eye drop meds (which she hates, oh my god) and we’re going to give her those until next Thursday when we take her back for a follow-up.

If she responds to the meds it’s likely they’ll just have us give her those for a while until things clear up, but if not, they talked about the possibility of having to remove her left eye, as the increased pressure causes pain and, if caused by glaucoma, will eventually cause her to go blind anyway.

So hopefully she’ll respond to the meds. It’s basically all we can do at this point.

Poor sweet girl.