static, interference, intervention, intervene, get involved so as to alter or hinder an action, white noise, snow, fuzz, fuzzy, Fuzzy, ME

Saturday, July 22, 2017


Things have been going pretty well of late.  Not everything has gone as I would hope, but things are better than they have been and I have been reacting better to those things things that I didn't care about so much.  Last week, I went to Pitchfork and I had a lot of fun.  I saw friends there and outside Pitchfork and things were good.  I did seem to get an irritated eye on Saturday or Sunday.  Things didn't get better, so I thought that I might have gotten in my eye and decided to see my eye doctor on Tuesday.  He has had experience with things in my eye, so I trusted him.  He didn't find anything, but did notice that my eye was irritated and prescribed an antibiotic/steroid eye drop to try to take care of it.  This didn't help, and in fact, things got worse.  I started noticing irritations around my eye and on my scalp.  I saw him on Thursday and he did some more looking.  He then asked me before telling me anything if I have been under a lot of stress of late.  While things have been better of late, I did have to say yes.  He then told me that he though that I had shingles.  Two siblings and my mom have had shingles but they had them on their trunk.  I had never heard of it on the head.  He sent me to a specialist on Friday to confirm, which he did.  My eye hurts and things are very painful.  I have had a headache since Tuesday and the eruptions are very tender and painful.  It's worse in the morning, but things do improve as the day goes on (although never gets good).  I am taking an anti-viral, Valtrex, and L-Lysine to fight it.  Hopefully things progress quickly.  I missed three and a half days of work last week and I wan to have all of my work done before I go on vacation next week.

Sunday, July 09, 2017

Bad Day

I stopped doing affirmations because I wasn't really sure if they were doung much.  I do knoe that writing about my feelings does help somewhat becaus I have done it in the past to some success.  I will not say that writing brings me back to normal, but it does bring me out of a nosedive.  I am in a serious nosedive right now and am in a serious existential crisis.  I am very sad, a little lost, and wondering what the he'll I'm doing.  I am and have been dissatisfied with my job for a while.  I have remedying this for 15 years by volunteering.  The problem is that the organization that gets the most of my time is just about at its end.  I do volunteer at other places, but there isn't as much opportunity.  I need to find another place to give my time.  As far as friends or romance are concerned, there is nothing.  I have friends, but I really don't have anyone I can call in a minute and my love life is a joke.  I am on Tinder, but I have had very little luck there.  I have had a few matches, but only one that has written back to me and that didn't work after the first date.  This is kind of the story of my life.

I am going to meet the person here in Chicago that is probably closest to me.  While we are close though, we can't hang out at a moment's notice.  At the present point, I am wondering if there is anything holding me in Chicago.  I am very close to a few people here, but I also have very close friends in Midland, Washington DC, Indianapolis,  Detroit, and Greenville, SC.  I really don't know if it matters where I live.  Having said that, if I do leave, I will have to choose a place that has some good food.  My food blog, while it isn't read by many people and makes me no money is kind of important to me.

Sitting in Beermiscuous writing and listening to Broken Social Scene, my mood has improved quite a bit, so I think I will end here on a happier note than when I started.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017


I decided that I would put all of my affirmations in a single post because making a post that is a single line is simply a shame.

Wednesday, June 21:  I am very good at being there for other people, but tend to ignore my own feelings.  I did pretty well tonight bringing them out.

Thursday, June 22:  Today was very productive at work and I made significant progress on several important projects and responsibilities.

Friday, June 23:  I am glad that I am handy and was able to repair my toilet on my own.

Saturday, June 24:  Every month, I pick out a restaurant to dine at for brunch and I invite many friends.  This takes dedication, but I appreciate the payoff.  Several of the friends that I invite for brunch are not really foodies.  I did find out however, that even among them, I am having an influence which gratifies me.

Sunday, June 25:  Today went very well so it's hard to come up with a good affirmation for me.  I'm glad that I have a good memory, so I could remember where I could have possibly lost my money clip.  I'm also glad that I'm doing well enough that the possible loss of a few dollars doesn't really affect me.

Monday, June 26:  I'm happy I have a job that keeps me productive and gives me enough money to do the things that I like to do.

Tuesday, June 27:  I'm happy that I have enough foodie experience to be able to appreciate the dinners that I attend.

Wednesday, June 28:  I'm happy for my friends and happy to see that they care about me.

Thursday, June 29:  I biked almost 40 miles today.  I'm glad I'm in good enough shape that I can bike as much as I do.

Friday, June 30:  I am very that I am close with my family.  While I can't yet talk to them about therapy, I do know that they would support me.

Mt. St. Helens, Words, and Hunter Thompson again

I have been writing all day so this may very well be a short post. Geologists are watching Mt. St. Helens closely again because there was a small explosion on Tuesday. Air traffic had to be rerouted because the resulting ash cloud rose to 36,000 feet. 5 of 7 monitors that were in the crater before the explosion are no longer responding and are thought to be disabled. There is thought that this is the beginning of a more active period in the mountains eruptive cycle.

I found this really cool website about words. It consists of 19 pages of word oddities and trivia from various dictionaries. While it all is pretty cool, some of the words aren't English, so they don't (in my mind, count).

Hunter Thompson's family is looking for a cannon to follow through with his last wish, which was to shoot his ashes out of a cannon over his compound. They have put a request out for people with cannons to submit a 1000 word essay with a picture of the cannon. Ideally, they would like to have a cannon with historical significance and hopefully one from Kentucky. Send your pictures to the Thompson compound in Aspen, Colorado.

Music: Paperwings - Damien Jurado
Book: Last Call - Laura Pedersen
Iraq: March - 15
Total - 1513

Sunday, June 18, 2017


I am writing this in a place that no one will ever see.  I am much better at expressing myself via the written word than verbally, so I am going to see of this can be cathartic for me.  I have been depressed for a while and I finally decided to try to see if I could do anything about it.  My life disappoints me.  I know that I am intelligent and am very good at what I do, I just don't know how to convince anyone of that so I can get to where I want to be.  I have talked about being the world's worst salesman.  Everything comes down to convincing people that you are the guy whether that be in work, in life, or in romance.  I have problems in all three areas despite being recognized as being very good at who I am, I can't convince people that I can (or should) make the next step.  Recent personal issues have brought that to a head (losing my wallet, my mother's illness, my job's apparent dead end, my relationship with Julia and questions about where I fit in, the fact that I haven't been able to volunteer recently).  I will grant that if I keep myself busy, I generally don't have issues, but if things stop, I sink into a hole.  I'm not sure if the writing will help because when I write, I'm doing something and the darkest feelings get pushed to the side.  Having said that, I am writing about my feelings and trying to expose the darkness, so it might help.  I was in a pretty dark place this morning, but I have reached a better place since I have been writing, not just this, but my food blog as well.  While I didn't talk about it on that blog, that was an emotionally charged couple of days, and simply writing about it, made me think about it.  I think I will end here because, I don't know if there is anything that I really need to write about.  I will probably write here a few more times to see if it works.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Nato Protest

It was a Sunny May Day on the day that I went to Grant Park to protest NATO.  Police and the media were making a big deal of things and warning people not to go downtown because of the gridlock that would inevitably occur due to the protest and the transport of the NATO conference members.  While people were warned away, it did strike me as funny as I walked through the Loop and saw almost nothing open.  I will grant that the protest that I attended was on a Sunday and many places in the Loop don't open but this was like a ghost town.  There was one business that I saw open as I walked to the park from where I parked my bike (I parked my bike outside the Loop in the event that things did get bad so I wouldn't have to worry about it).  The one open business was a Starbucks and it was doing a bang up business with everyone.  While there were many issues people had (and many protests), the focus of the protest that I attended was one of peace.  There was going to be a ceremony at the end of the march in which many veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan were going to "return" their medals.  As a veteran of the first Gulf War, I agree very strongly with this and I wanted to go to stand in solidarity with them. 

While I am a veteran of the Navy who served during the first Gulf War, I am also a pacifist.  So why does a pacifist join the Navy (or the military in general?  I can't speak for all pacifists but I joined in order to help myself pay for college.  I joined during peace time (even though we were at the end of the Cold War) and from what I could see, it didn't look like we were going to see any action.  When Iraq invaded Kuwait, I hoped that things could be worked out peacefully and I was very disappointed when the fighting started.  I was on an LPD, an auxiliary ship with no offensive weapons but carried Marines and their landing craft so they could make an amphibious landing if it was necessary.  While our mission was to stand off the coast threateningly, we did not do a landing.  That does not mean that we didn't have any casualties or have to deal with a constant threat level.  In any case, we made it through and I finished my service in 1992 at a time when it seemed that we were reducing our military size.  This, I thought, was a very good thing.  I am proud of my service but I think that our military has become too active.  I have been somewhat active in the anti-war movement for many years.  I have been to many protests although I have only been arrested once.  Getting arrested has never been a goal for me for any of the protests that I have attended although after having it happened, I am not afraid to risk it.  I do let friends and family know that there is a risk that I may be arrested so if they don't hear from me to start looking.

The protest was to start at Petrillo Music Shell in Grant Park.  When I arrived (just before 10 am when events were to start), there was a line of media trucks parked at the curb and a bunch of people ready for the event.  There were some police there but it wasn't overwhelming. The veterans were, for the most part, gathered as a group across the street from the music shell.  The schedule of events had two hours of music (including Tom Morello from Rage against the Machine as The Nighwatchman) followed by a series of speakers and then the march at the end of which there would be a ceremony where the veterans would introduce themselves, explain why they were there, and why they were giving up their medals.  It was supposed to be very peaceful if dissident in it's view point.  There were some black bloc anarchists there so it was obvious to me that there was going to be some conflict although I was going to try to avoid that if possible.

The program started and it was pretty nice even if they did have sound issues in the beginning.  The musicians played a variety of styles although it was all basically protest music.  Because of the sound issues, a few of the musicians did their songs via mic check (using the crowd as their microphone) and Tom Morello took it one step further and joined the veterans (who had joined the crowd).  After the musicians came the speakers and there were many speakers.  There were many issues addressed but it all essentially came down to the idea that the money spent on military actions by NATO and their individual countries could be spent better elsewhere.  Along the same lines is the same idea that because so much money is spent on the military, the powers that be feel obligated to use it much more often than is actually necessary (If your only tool is a hammer, then everything looks like a nail).  And collateral damage is much more than those people that are injured and killed in an actual battle setting.

The speakers ended and the people lined up for the march.  For the most part, this was fine but the black bloc wanted to try to make a rush at McCormick Place where the conference was being held so they made a push to get to the front but they were kept back.  From where I was walking, things stayed pretty peaceful for the journey to the end of the march.  I heard later that there were a few clashes between the black bloc and the police who were lining the route but I didn't see it.  The march ended about 1/2 a mile from McCormick Place and the veterans did their thing.  To me, it was very moving.  It reminded me of videos I have seen of the Viet Nam protest in 1971 in which the VVAW (including future Sen. John Kerry) gave their medals back on the steps of Congress.  At the end, they did ask people to leave peacefully which most people were happy to do.  There was, however, the black bloc group that might have numbered 100 people that shouted "NATO is east" after the police gave us the option of leaving to the west or the south.  These people were kids, probably late teens to mid-20s for the most part, who were simply looking for trouble and wanted to be contrary.  While I don't fault the police for their actions against these people (for the most part), I have to wonder what the black bloc would have done if they hadn't faced any resistance.

My journey home was uneventful although it was a long walk back to my bike.  It would have been possible to take the el back to the Loop but when I left my house I decided to pack light and didn't bring anything with me in the event that things would have gone bad and I would have been arrested.  I didn't want to risk losing my money and I didn't think there was a point to having my ID on me because when I did get arrested and I did have my ID, the police still got my name wrong (I was named Kenneth Gary Grice).  I did joke with my friends later that it might have been better to have been arrested because the police station that they brought the arrestees to was within walking distance of my house.  At the end of the day, I was tired, sunburned, and gratified that I was able to go out and stand with people who believe like I do that war is not the answer.    

Sunday, November 12, 2006

I'm Moving

No, I am not physically moving but I am moving the address where I do my main blog. This has been my main blog for two years and I do have a few people that read it regularly, but more of my friends visit my MySpace page so I will begin doing my main blog there. I may post here occasionally but if you want to find out more regularly what is on my mind visit me on MySpace.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Election Judge

I posted early yesterday with not much to say because I worked as an election judge and I knew when I finished, that I would be too tired to say anything. I did say what I thought was the most important thing for yesterday by telling people to go out and vote. Polls were open from 6 AM to 7 PM so I had to be there from 5:15 AM until we finished. We did get one break but it was still a very long day. We finished packing up and cleaning the voting area just before 8 PM and then two of us took the results to the township hall for tabulation. I got home at 8:30 PM. We processed 313 voters (which was about 55% of the eligible voters in that precinct) and referred about another 10 to their proper polling place. From what I have heard, it seems that our amazingly trouble-free shift was the exception rather than the rule. We had no equipment breakdowns and the only problem was when we seemes to lose a couple of the special pens used for marking the paper ballots. We were giving them the pens without caps so that people would be less inclined to walk off with them, but it seemed, at the time that a couple of people did. We made a trouble call and received two new pens and shortly thereafter the two missing pens reappeared. While the results were, for the most part, as I had hoped, in reality I don't expect any major changes in the direction we are going any time soon.