Sep. 13th, 2017 10:45 pm
sareini: Image of the Bursar from the Discworld universe (Bursar)
I had to put the heating on today. In early September. That's just not right. Personally I could have gone a few more weeks without it, but Lily made her displeasure known to me this morning by climbing onto me and refusing to move, leeching my body heat. Such a prima donna; it's only one degree below 10 C. But I don't want her to be unhappy or uncomfortable, especially considering her health, so the heating goes on, at least at night, for now.

Bloody climate change.

I've been trying to catch up on my sleep and energy levels these past few days, which means I still haven't gone to see The Dark Tower as I had vaguely planned for this week. Instead, I've been playing quite a fair bit of XCOM 2 (even though I've not finished the first one yet). Still just as bad at base management and multi-tasking, but the ability to customise my soldiers and kit them out in full Mad Max gear more than makes up for it. Which is why my troops now include Imperator Furiosa, Max Rocketansky, Natasha Romanov and Jason Voorhees (he came wearing a hockey mask and became a Ranger, and one-shots people with a throwing axe. What other name could I have given him?). As for the game, I'm getting through it by degrees and a surprisingly low amount of save-scumming (saved for moments such as when a Viper gets a lucky crit and one-shots someone, for example).

Also today, while I was out getting the cat food so Lily and Callie don't eat me in my sleep, I ended up wandering into PC World and buying a microphone in the next step towards making those videos I keep theorycrafting. It seems to be a pretty good mic - USB, has a stand, volume and mute controls, supposedly noise-cancelling from certain angles, and a good deal cheaper than the other "pro" microphones in the store, which were all around £120, while this one was only £35. So now I have one less reason to keep putting this thing off, because even £35 is not to be sneezed at. I'll try to test it out this weekend.


Jul. 17th, 2017 06:26 pm
sareini: "I'm sorry, I'm having a bad century" quote from Neil Gaiman's Sandman (Bad Century)
I'm starting to believe someone recently put a curse on me.

Lily had a vet appointment today. To catch up; Lily has been receiving treatment for a condition known as cholangiohepatitis since the beginning of the year. It's an inflammation of the liver and bile ducts, and unfortunately in Lily's case it is chronic, which means it periodically flares up and can't be really cured, just managed. She's on a mix of antibiotics and steroids for this, and it's improved her condition tremendously - in January she was vomiting daily, severely jaundiced and had lost about 2kg in weight. Now she has periodic bouts of vomiting, but the jaundice is being kept to a minimum and she's put her lost weight back on and more, to the point where I'm having to put her on a diet. We're coping the best we can.

I was just starting to get things ready for the trip to the vets when there was a knock on the door. It turned out to be someone coming to read the gas and electric meters; something I was not expecting, plus I was in the middle of stuff and the front room is such a mess that it's not really possible to get to the gas meter right now anyway. I try to explain this to the meter reader but he just snarls at me, "You said this last time. You just don't want to have your meter read," and stalked off.

So that was asshole #1 to upset me.

So I chased Lily around the house for a bit, got her in the carrier and got the taxi to the vet. There she got checked over - jaundice levels the same as last time, no other problems - but then the vet (who was a locum I'd not seen at the place before) started talking about pancreatic cancer.

If Lily had pancreatic cancer I'm pretty sure we'd have noticed it by now, since she's been seen monthly and at one point fortnightly since January and ultrasounds have shown that the mass around her bile ducts in January reduced in size considerably after a month on the meds (we just can't take her off them because she starts being sick again). But thanks for worrying me unnecessarily there. Then, as I'm closing the carrier up and getting ready to leave, I mention that my goal is really just to get her to 19, as my readings had shown me a 5-year survival rate for cats with this condition, and while I know she's not going to live forever, if I can keep her strong for as long as possible I'll have done my job as cat owner. The vet responds, "Oh, I don't think that will happen."

...I guess I should just not bother then, should I?

Asshole #2 needs to work on his bedside manner.

Add to that the Spanish Plume that's headed our way this week (temperatures up to 28 degrees, then thunderstorms and heavy rain!) and the deaths of George A Romero and Martin Landau, and I'm feeling pretty beaten down today. I think I'm going to spend the evening eating ice cream and crafting. Maybe watching stuff to put my mind on autopilot. Tomorrow will be better.
sareini: The truth shall make thee fret - Discworld (The Truth)
1) What's the weather like where you are today?

2) How does this type of weather make you feel?

3) What's your favourite time of year (thinking about the weather)?

4) Is there any weather that just makes you want to hide away indoors?

5) If you were moving somewhere purely for the climate, where would it be - what's your perfect year-round weather scenario?

1 - It's... grey. Lots of cloud, but it's white/pale grey so not really overcast. AccuWeather tells me it's 16 degrees C, with no rain. So basically your regular English summer day :P

2 - Comfortable, really. I do not do well in hot weather, being of larger frame and pale skin, but of course it's no fun when it's freezing and pouring down with rain either. This is nicely in my weather comfort zone.

3 - Autumn. It's getting cold but not too cold, and it's often windy. I like wind (not stuff like hurricanes or tornadoes, of course, although I did get to walk to school in the Great British Hurricane of 1987, because my mother believed every word Michael Fish said).

4 - Extreme heat. Like I said, I don't do well in the heat, so when it gets too hot (and I'm talking about when it gets to 25 degrees C and above, because I'm British and we're just not used to temperatures like that) I tend to try to go into a reverse-hibernation.

5 - South-East Ireland. Yes, half my family comes from there and I spent a good portion of my childhood there so I might be biased, but the weather there is much the same as it is here, with the exception that when it's warm it's more comfortable because it's on the coast. Other than that, just anywhere where there aren't any extremes of weather. I'm pretty easy-going on this subject otherwise.

(From here.)
sareini: Bub from Day of the Dead (bub!)
There was supposed to be thunderstorms and (at the very least) rain today. When I briefly left the house this afternoon I could even feel it in the air. I could smell it in the air. But it never happened. So right now we're still sitting at 24 degrees C with the hope of it dropping again tonight like it did last night for a while, allowing Lily and I to sleep and feel a little better today. Although there's a possibility I'm getting either a kidney infection or a kidney stone now. Ow.

Today I finally managed to watch The Belko Experiment, having finally tracked down a decent copy. Its poster has a quote describing it as "Battle Royale meets Office Space!" and honestly, I take that as a challenge. It's a basic story: 80 employees of the Columbia branch of the Belko Corporation find themselves locked into their isolated office building and told that they have two hours to kill 30 of their fellow employees or 60 of them will die. Oh, and they all have mini-bombs implanted in the back of their skulls that explode if they try to escape or break the rules (they were told they were GPS trackers to guard against kidnapping). We then see the different reactions of several of the staff as they try to survive, with it ranging from the one guy who wants to try to save everyone without killing to the inevitable guy who would have eventually gone on a killing spree anyway (played by Dr Cox from Scrubs!), to the COO who decides that it's his responsibility to save as many people as possible, and the only way to do that is to execute 30 employees.

So it's an edgier version of Battle Royale but with adults and with a tacked-on "social experiment" explanation. And because nothing will ever beat Battle Royale in my heart, of course it's not as good. I mean, it's not bad, but it's not better than its obvious inspiration. There's moments of black comedy throughout - some moments are good, while others are too obvious and fall flat. I found myself more attached to incidental characters rather than the protagonists and antagonists, and I found the ending to be (a) predictable and (b) rather trite in one big way. But hey, James Gunn and Greg McLean (of Wolf Creek infamy) certainly tried hard. And it's very bloody - splattery, even. So in the end I guess I recommend it - just don't expect sublime things from it.
sareini: (hiding)
The continued heat, even at night, has started to cause me another problem: I can't sleep. Last night I tried using Nick's old room fan to cool things off a little, and while Callie was enthralled by it and the very concept of "wind inside a house", it came at a price: I couldn't hear my music over the noise of the fan, which meant I still couldn't sleep. So that, coupled with worried about Lily who's having a flare-up and several personal things getting to me and weighing down on me, left me feeling very depressed this morning. I tried calling my social worker, but even though she's back from her holiday she's now off sick, so I'm still left twisting in the wind and that only made me feel worse.

So, after curling up in bed with Lily who senses when I'm bad like this and came along to purr on me for three hours so I got some sleep, I decided to take quiet day today. Worked on Ross's birthday present, drank raspberry lemonade water and watched random stuff.

One thing I watched was a J-horror mockumentary found footage movie called Noroi The Curse. It's one of those movies that holds your attention for the near two-hour run time, but then when it ends you have to rush off to Wikipedia to work out what you just watched. I enjoyed it greatly - like I said, it held my attention for the whole thing, and was just the right amount of creepy without any overt jump scares - and with notes of Ghostwatch, The Blair Witch Project and a kernel of what would become Paranormal Activity but I also strongly suspect I'd have understood parts better if I had a better understanding of Japanese and Shinto customs.

Now I'm playing League of Legends (because what better thing to do when feeling low than play Abuse Simulator 2017?) and drinking yet more raspberry lemonade water, because that stuff is like crack.
sareini: "Did I mention that my nose was on fire? That I have fifteen wild badgers living in my trousers?" - Babylon 5 (Nose on fire)
28 degrees C! I swear, we British are not equipped to deal with temperatures like this. Well, at the very least *I'm* not.

Lily has come up with the best way to beat the heat - she just climbs into the big cardboard box and goes to sleep in it. It's shady and cool and I wish I could fit in there with her. Callie just lies flat on the upstairs landing, where there are no windows and so it's a little cooler than the rest of the house. Meanwhile I sit and seriously debate the merits of just taking all my clothes off and pulling the blind down in the living room before I remember that still leaves me uncomfortably sticky and I can't go into the kitchen then.

I might have to put ice cubes in the cats' water soon, although whenever I did last year they just looked at me as if to say, "Mummy, why have you made the water lumpy?" Then Callie started trying to play with the floating ice cubes.

I know that others are enjoying the hot weather, and that's great. I just wish air conditioning was a thing in the UK for those of us who don't do well in the heat. If nothing else, it's sapping my concentration for doing stuff as well...

Still Hot

May. 26th, 2017 02:47 pm
sareini: (surprised)
It's 24 degrees C (and likely to get hotter). I've published a review (Intruders) and now have ice cream.

I'd say anything else I do today is a bonus.
sareini: default (Number 13)
It is cold. -6 degrees celsius (that's 21.2 degrees fahrenheit) to be exact. As a result, Nick is wearing socks on his hands a la Jeff Hardy (I've threatened to get some brightly coloured fabric dyes and paint stripes on them) and Jelli, once she's on our laps or in fact anywhere where there's a duvet or chance for warmth, refuses to move. She's perfectly happy to employ her claws in this as well.

In trying to keep my hands unfrozen and have the blood keep running through them, I'm trying to knit gloves. Only I don't have any sircular needles and I don't know how to shape fingers, so they're likely to end up as some sort of freaky handwarmers or something...

Oh, and there's also snow. I hate my country's weather.
sareini: default (Discworld - Thunder rolled)
Two days ago, I woke up to heavy snow falling and about two inches already on the ground. There had been no weather warnings for the snow.

Last night, I saw on the BBC that heavy snow and blizzards were expected for parts of the country, including mine. Instead, it just rained a little and all the snow that hadn't already melted disappeared.

I love British weather.
sareini: default (000 cats)
It is cold here. Too cold to do very much but complain about the cold, as is the British tradition.

I got my hair cut at the weekend, thanks to Nick the Hairdresser (his secret talent, useful for when we don't have the money for getting my hair cur by a professional). Apparently I now look a little like Dorothy Parker. Whether or not that's a good thing I don't know; I just know that I like it.

Jelli has been having a mad day; hurtling round everywhere, jumping on things and generally being a streak of black and white fur about the house, who periodically stops dead to clean a paw slowly and carefully, and then zooms off into another room again.

Also, I've had a headache for two days. It's very annoying and distracting from my writing, which I've really got to catch up on after I've had a bath. Bleh.
sareini: default (Discworld - Exclamation marks)
- I'm now 29. Got Supernatural season 3 (Dean is still such a woobie!),the complete set of American Gothic and a month's subscription to Warhammer Online from Nick; a box of Lush stuff from my brother and nieces (Rachael now has pillar box red hair. I approve!); and two of those Scraperfoil kits and a bar of chocolate from Nick's mother.

- It snowed here on Monday and Tuesday. Snow. In October. What really did it for me, though, was seeing the news reports of it: "Meteorologists say snow caused by Arctic air". Well I never. Next they'll be telling me that cold weather is caused by a drop in temperature.

- I broke our microwave. And quite possibly the light fitting in the kitchen. And Nick's keyboard. My friends have dubbed this ability the "Luddite's Touch". I like it.

- Everywhere I look there are zombies (although, sadly, not literally). I'm just kicking myself that we don't have cable so I can watch Dead Set on E4.

- I have done practically no preparation for NaNoWriMo. It's going to be a fun November!


May. 11th, 2008 04:41 pm
sareini: default ("bad century")
I was going to post about things like the weather and one of my new all-time favourite movies here, but instead I have to go to the local A&E with Nick now, because Nick's hay fever has gotten him so bad that one of his eyes (yes, the actual eyeball) has swollen up (along with the rest of the surrounding area) and currently looks like he has a huge blood blister on his eyeball that's about to pop.

So instead you can hear me rant at great length about my local healthcare system when I get back.

Oh, and it's too bloody hot.
sareini: default (discworld - truth fret)
Apparently, I have a typing speed of 15300 ksph (that's keystrokes per hour) or 51 words a minute. Although it goes down to 42 words per minute when you factor in typos.

Heh. 42.

So, I managed to get down to the place I was having the interview despite the snow - in the end I just dressed in my brand-new 'interview' clothes, which consist of a pair of dark brown formal trousers and a blouse-pullover combo (one of those ones where the bouse is actually sewn into the inside of the pullover) in white and tan, and walked into town in my sneakers because they had better grip. Once I was there I changed into my 'work' shoes, which are black, have no heel whatsoever and are actually comfortable because they're in that new 'ballet shoe' style that's apparently sweeping the nation.

I got snowed on the whole way there and nearly went snowblind on a couple of occasions, but it wasn't all that bad, just really really cold and windy.

Interview wasn't that bad either - just got asked a lot of the same questions you get asked at any interview - "What are your strengths?", "What kind of job are you looking for?", that sort of thing. The guy didn't have the faintest idea what CFS was, so I had to try to explain it to him while, for possibly the first time ever, trying to make it sound like it wasn't as bad as it could have been.

Anyway... Turns out the job is for Royal Mail, and if I got it I'd be working Customer Service for them, taking enquiries and complaints over the phone, that sort of thing. I get the idea that they might be a little desperate for workers, as I'm going to an assessment with them tomorrow morning despite the job brief saying that it's essential for clients to have had at least 3 months' experience in the Customer Service industry. Also, the guy I saw today said they were focussing less on qualifications and more on what people were like, which is another sure sign that they're desperate for workers.

Had to do a typing test, which is where my score came from (incidentally, the minimum requirement for the job was 3500 ksph, which now seems pretty damn slow to me), and apparently tomorrow I'll have to do some sort of spelling/grammar test, a postcode lookup test and a mock phonecall (the latter taking me back to my Nightline days...) Then I'll be told right there if I've 'passes', and if I have I'll then be taken into the Customer Service floor to observe and listen in to some actual phone calls.

There was only one snag - at one point the guy giving me today's interview said "And make sure you dress for an interview tomorrow - wear a suit or something formal like that". I think I managed to make my face stop falling just in time, but I guess that mans my new 'interview' clothes just aren't formal enough... which is a bit if a problem as I can't afford any more and didn't have any time to buy any anyway. So I guess I'll just have to hope there...
sareini: default (B5 - karma)
You. Fucking. Bastard.
sareini: default (Angry Princess (one))
One )

Two )

Three )

Four )

Five )
sareini: default (Default)
A man from the Water Board has just been driving up and down the street with a loudspeaker announcing that the water is going to be cut off so that they can effect emergency repairs. I'm betting that these repairs are probably a burst pipe or something after last night's snowfall (which has thankfully melted now) and freezing temperatures.

So I rest my case.


Also, I currently want to find the person responsible for the programme ads on ITV2 and beat them with a heavy blunt object for continually showing ads for the new season of Supernatural, with all sorts of exciting happenings and stuff... and then just finishing with "Coming Soon". Yes, I know it's "coming soon", but I want a bloody date!
sareini: default (Discworld - Curse)
Aaaahhhh! Snow!
sareini: default (Discworld - Thunder rolled)
In case you hadn't heard (which would only really happen if you weren't currently in the UK), we're currently being beaten to a pulp by gale force winds over here.

A few minutes ago I went out to the local shop (electricity top-up) and as I rounded the corner to leave our road I noticed that the main road was cordoned off. About 50 meters up the road there's another cordon, and a couple of flat-bed trucks and workmen and the like.

Turns out the church that's about 50 meters up the road from where I live has literally had its roof ripped off by the wind, and to make matters worse it's demolished part of the building as well. It literally looks like one of those Monty Python feet came down and trod on one corner of the church and squashed it flat.

If I can find a picture (because these sorts of things always make the news when there's bad weather, because half-demolished churches tend to be newsworthy) I'll post it or link to it.
sareini: (hiding)
I am too hot and I feel sick.

I'm hot because of the weather. No other explanation needed, really.

I'm feeling sick because I'm out of my medication, and because we don't have any phones with credit on them right now I couldn't call the doctor at 8am to try to make an appointment. So I decided that I'd try going in in person and making an appointment.

Earliest they had was Monday afternoon. Never mind that there's a lack of medication NOW, I'm just going to have to suffer.

Bloody doctors' surgery. I swear, sometimes I almost feel sorry for them, hearing how the government and the local NHS trust is fucking up the finances round here... and then stuff like this happens and I remember that they could have all the money in the world and still be complete assholes to their patients.


Jul. 19th, 2006 04:14 pm
sareini: default (Bast)
...we may be getting another cat.

Remember back when I started putting the food out, it was originally for a pretty-looking white-and-tan longhair that had been hanging around?

Well, although Jelly was the one who ended up getting the food and eventually moving in, we've still seen the white-and-tan around a few times. Interestingly, several times we've seen it sitting on the wall of our backyard, while Jelly has been sitting either on the ground or on a wall as well. A couple of times it's even apparently been 'waiting' for her when she's gone out for her evening 'constitutional'. They've never fought as far as I've seen.

Well, last night I was curled up on the sofa watching a movie (Maniac Cop III: Badge of Silence if you really want to know... not really very good), and Jelly was on her chair cleaning herself after dinner. I suddenly see a flash of white out of the corner of my left eye (the one near the kitchen door) and turn to look.

The white-and-tan cat had come in through the open back door and into the living room, and was looking at Jelly. Jelly glanced up at it, meowed briefly, and went back to cleaning. No issues about territory whatsoever.

I turn to the new arrival and say hello in my best cat voice, but it must have thought it was going to be punished because it dashed back out the door. I followed it out into the backyard, despite it being pitch black and me not having any night vision, and I saw it sitting on the wall. I called to it but it jumped off the wall into the alley.

So, we figure we've got a couple of possibilities here:

- this is Jelly's boyfriend (Nick's idea, I'm not to sure because how often do male cats hang around?)

- Jelly and this other cat were pets together in the past, and were abandoned/ran away together, because I don't know if stray cats generally become friends.

Nick says we don't have the room for a second cat, but really, if the latter possibility is true, can we really separate them?

(I probably shouldn't be trying to come up with names for the white-and-tan, should I?)


Oh, and on the weather front: 34 degrees C! Arrrggghh!

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