Category Archives: Happenings

Synchronicity and the Bluegrass State

The past few weeks, I have experienced some kind of apophenia, when you see patterns in random things. If you ever watched the cult classic Repo Man, there was a scene in which Miller and Otto were talking about some unified theory. There Miller explained the Jungian concept of synchronicity in layman’s terms:

A lot of people don’t realize what’s really going on. They view life as a bunch of unconnected incidents and things. They don’t realize that there’s this, like, lattice of coincidence that lays on top of everything. Give you an example, show you what I mean: suppose you’re thinkin’ about a plate of shrimp. Suddenly someone’ll say, like, “plate,” or “shrimp,” or “plate of shrimp” out of the blue, no explanation. No point in lookin’ for one, either. It’s all part of a cosmic unconsciousness.

While I do not follow the spiritual working of Carl Jung, one can learn that people would see connexions in random events. When a woman becomes pregnant, she sees pregnant women everywhere. She is processing her own status as a pregnant woman and is aware of her future as a mother. She then prepares for her new identity.

During the last few weeks, I have seen various instances in which the word “Kentucky” appears out of the blue outside work and home. It has to be a random occurrence; visiting a liquor store and seeing a Jim Beam display does not count. And passing by KFC does not count either. The OTB, reading Blood Horse, my decor, anything of that sort, does not count. The key word is random. Here is an example: I was at the Van Wert County Fair in Ohio, and there were carnival games. One of them involved a mechanical race in one moves the horse via a skee-ball ramp and ball. My coworker’s partner said to me that he challenges me to this game. So I took up the challenge and looked at the horses. There was a sign that read “Kentucky Derby”. Yea, seems legit. But it brought me a chill and felt my hair stand up.

Let’s see: Two Persons of Walmart crossed my path, one wearing a Wildcats hoodie. A contestant for The Voice mentioned he was from Louisville, KY. A news article from the Verge talking about a Samsung Note 7 exploding in That Certain State. The church bulletin had an announcement for a youth trip to the Creation Museum, over There. And today on Facebook, there is a picture of beauty pageant contestants in swimsuits, with sashes. One of them read “Kentucky”.

My coworker suggested that it means we must visit Keeneland next April for the Bluegrass Stakes, plus visit the Coolmore stud farm. That is a great idea– the cure for cowbell is more cowbell. After we visit Gulfstream Park for the Pegasus World Cup. But this pattern pops out.

So today, I took the time why I am seeing a pattern. Why “Kentucky”? There, I must use psychology.

I drew word maps and did free association. From that word I got horses. Stakes. The time I attended the Spiral Stakes at Turfway. My outfit. Fascinator. Elegance. The Derby. American Pharoah. Spend A Buck. My childhood. Churchill Downs. The day I visited Churchill Downs. Now I’m getting somewhere. 9 May. No psychological pain on that day this year. Standing in front of Barbaro’s grave, realising that I have survived the wilderness years. I could have… but I resisted, Deo Gratias.

Liberation. Farewell to my old broken identity as a theology reject. Hello full-time career with benefits.

Weep No More.

There is the crux of this apophenia. It is my mind’s way of telling me that my life has changed and is now unfolding. All this time while seeing these words, I was transitioning to my new identity. Then, I tried to be normal. Now, I am openly Autistic without fear. Then, I hated God. Now, I come to the Sacrament. Then, I loathed my existence. Now, I accept myself.

Those random instances out of static are a mental signpost. I am going somewhere. I hope God goes with me. I will do my best at my job. And I have more things to do, places to visit, horses to be fed mints. Hopefully, I won’t be seeing much random patterns popping up in the future, but my coworker tells me she wants more– bring it on! Dude, you do not want to tempt the universe into giving me overload. I am typing carefully to avoid using the “K word”. I prefer exposure to the Bluegrass State controlled, thank you very much.

New Poster: Now with Correct Spelling.

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I thought, prior Kentucky Derbies had good prints, so I searched on various sites. And I found great posters. This one did not incorporate the year into the graphic itself. So I got the 2002 edition, and got a nice frame for it.

It’s of a crowd gathered around the jockey and his horse, with Churchill Downs in the background. One lady is holding a mint julep.

Best of all, no misspellings that make me twitch. I double checked that before ordering. Next year, I hope to get a giclee print and put it in the living room.

I also got a Preakness print as well, on special:

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It was in honor of the 125th stakes. The artist who did that is talented. That poster was quite big, but I managed to fit it on the other side of the bedroom. I looked for recent prints, but it looked like I would have to wait less than 9 years for an 150th stakes edition.

So now my room is properly decorated and tied together. That is the end of the poster typo saga. Less twitching, more sleep.

The Poster Typo Saga, Part 3: The Quest Begins

You’d think Walmart has poster tubes to send posters via mail. Not there. Office De[s]pot was closed and I had to look at Wally World for the tube. Not there, so I had to purchase the tube at the post office. Yesterday, I removed the poster, rolled it, and sent it back with a return form.

Now, my wall is bare. I have enough other types of wall decor in my room, like a crucifix, my diplomas, and wedding pictures. I have framed pictures on the dresser: in college with my spiritual director, a set of Winston Churchill stamps, and my ham radio license. But this room is missing a horse racing picture right on my wall.

What should I place instead? An old Derby poster seemed possible, but I have not watched the past events in over a decade. I wanted a giclee print, but the cost is prohibitive. Work is easy, but bills eat up my wages, as it is the way of living, no? I will have to earn it the hard way: exactas and trifectas.

So, my quest begins. First, it’s bills and food. What’s left over, I save. Then, I will choose a picture. With correct spelling. Stay tuned.

The Poster Typo Saga, part 2

Wrote an email to the designers this afternoon, that the C looked like a G. They assured me that the Art Deco font is correct, after all they sold many posters without problems.

Okay, fair enough. But how one explain the C in the Kentucky Oaks poster? The fonts does look similar… except for that C.

I’ve talked to my coworkers and on Facebook. They said that it sure looked like a G. So it’s hanging back on my wall, for now. But I am staring at it and will stare at the letter until I fall asleep.

My City Was Gone: Return to the Valley

I’m in the Valley to see my younger brother get wed. I am happy to say that the girl he married is lovable and decent. The ceremony was beautiful.

But this whole time I am here, I felt alien. Who wouldn’t? The areas that I grew up changed for the worst. Graffiti on ageing stucco. Strip club advertisements. Heretical storefront churches. Crap traffic. Crappier neighbours who would blare out Mexican oompa music at 2 am in the morning, let their unlicensed packs of dogs roam around the streets filled with dog turds. My brother’s dinky house has a huge gate that he locks every time. Back home, I locked the doors, no gates surrounding each house like a mini penitentiary. As if that was not enough, my mum broke her upper arm and the local hospital screwed up in stabilising her arm and she had to wait for a referral and someone to cast her. In Fort Wayne, the Parkview guys would immediately work on her and she could see a specialist the next 2 or 3 days. When Mum and Father move into Indiana, there will be lawns without sprinklers or yellowing grass. There will be more churches that look like churches. My parents can sleep in silence. Brick and wood siding, no cinder block gated fences. And best of all, fast service. No stupid bureaucracy holding up medical treatment, no two hour waits at the BMV to get a permit or plate renewal.

In-N-Out was why the forces of nature did not make California disappear into the ocean. It was super delicious. The magical flavor of grilled onion, sauce, and melted cheese inspires many top chefs, and is cheaper than most places. It tasted like home; however, it does not erase the strangeness of a different land. Like Chrissie Hynde have sung, our cities are gone. And I must return to the Fort Wayne area where I lived for 15 years. I look forward to returning home.

Belmont 2016: Weep No More


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Saturday afternoon, I told my bosses about being nervous over my picks, especially choosing 13) Creator as my pick. They told me it’s alright and it’s the nature of the game to make incorrect guesses. As long these guesses are informed guesses, it’s no worries.

A lady won a 500 dollar voucher and she must place a win bet. She asked me for advice, and I told her it’s my belief Creator will be the best choice, but ultimately, she must go for her gut feeling. She chose Stradivari. I advised her that she should view her chance as play money, and at least it was not her own actual money.

A group of gentlemen asked me about why I recommended Creator. I gave them a crash course of the Dosage index, a number denoting how pedigree influences a horse’s endurance. They did not know that this was a handy tool for races like the Belmont. (Note that it may not be a sole indicator to guess victors of the Kentucky Derby [i.e. Nyquist has an unfavorable number of 7] but it’s great to gauge classic distances.) I told them that horses like Lani (1.92), Creator (3.00), and Destin (1.43) has good dosage numbers… and alas, Exaggerator does not.

The race went and I was puzzled who was the winner? Destin? Gettysburg, the rabbit? The noise drowned out the announcing. After it was over, I saw the Winstar logo on the winner’s silks and then I saw the number on the saddle towel. WHAT? CREATOR?! I actually guessed THAT correctly?! I was very thrilled and most of all felt that I found my niche in life. An unorthodox niche, but it is MY niche. I quickly apologised to the lady on not being pushy enough to recommend Creator. The guys at the party table gave me high-fives for correctly guessing Creator. The bosses gave me fist bumps and high fives. The bartender who was pushing for Exaggerator smiled and flipped me off. I resumed bussing the tables. After my shift was over, I went to Kroger’s and one of the customers recognised me as the Girl who Guessed Creator. She ate at Voodoo and heard my recommendation.

Seeing my Triple Crown picks bearing much fruit was wonderful. The bosses and co workers noticed it, and even my mum thought it was cool to see me succeed. Deo Volente, I will be able to do this for a living, as soon my bosses give me clearance. I will find out within two weeks.

I’ve bought this bracelet in anticipation of my new path in life. On the bracelet, the engraving reads “Weep No More.” I first saw this phrase just before Derby weekend. A filly who was to run the Kentucky Oaks race was named that, it was a reference to Kentucky’s state song. As the horses processed to the post just before the Derby race, everyone in Churchill Downs would sing this song.

During that time, I was depressed, for it was around the time when the Deaconess programme advised me that due to my disability I must pursue another vocation. Since 2005, I had bouts of melancholia and wondered if I should end my life. I did not doubt the existence of God– for I know the universe is too complex, but my question was: Is God a GOOD god? Or is He the Cosmic Terrorist? Yet I attended the Sacrament, I attended Confession, and found great friends along the way.

When I saw these three words on the Daily Racing Form, it was oddly comforting. As if I was told that now is the time to live again because I have a future. I have a new job, and it was working great. So, I slept and I was all right. And after the Derby, I visited Churchill Downs and visited the Derby Museum. For the first time in years, I felt NO psychological pain on 9 May.

The Preakness was the time I must have got my bosses’ attention, as I got a trifecta and the superfecta right. And as the days went on, “Weep No More” became a beacon of hope and somehow, something will fall into place. They knew I was Autistic and they knew I can do many things well. My workplace accepted me!

Just last week, I found out that if things pan out, I will be working the programmes section and most likely, give wagering and handicapping tips. This involves a HUGE pay raise. At last, I will have a full-time job at a proper wage and benefits. I really hoping this comes into fruition. So, I bought this bracelet with these words. This Belmont Stakes, I was successful with Creator. It was not some fluke, it’s a reasonable guess that went well. God willing, I will see that I will no longer weep for my future, that my life has meaning, and my disability is no longer a liability but an asset. Please pray for me. In the meantime, I will hold on to that hope, that echo of the new earth that weeping will cease and I will see Joy face to face.

New Link Category: Horse Racing

Since Preggie got sick, I was at the Winner’s Circle off track betting, eating their pretzel bites and betting on horses. Liked the environment so much, I got a job there when Hoosier Park changed the format of the OTB site to include the Voodoo BBQ restaurant.

But the story of me and horse racing did not begin there. It actually began in 1985, the year when Spend A Buck won the Kentucky Derby.

In California, Santa Anita Park and Los Alamitos play their commercials regularly. My dad used to work at an Italian restaurant where Joe the boss has a penchant for horses and the Rat Pack. I thought gambling on horses was cool. AT SIX YEARS OF AGE. I would read the green sheets in the Sports pages of the newspaper. One year, Joe asked me what I thought of a certain race. I said that Brave Raj would win. Sure enough, he won and I got 20 bux. :D

Other concerns pressed on my mind over the years. And add the Evangelical/Pentecostal dictum to avoid gambling, and then college studies. Got married, and then focused on working.

Then the Brewpub opened. I wanted to visit, but I did not know how Confessional Lutherans would react to me going there. That changed when I’ve heard of American Pharoah and his Triple Crown bid. I’ve spent my breaks reading on the right trifecta box. Carpe Diem and Frosted? Maybe.

Got word of an undercard race the day of Belmont and I’ve heard that Big Blue Kitten and Sleeper will do well. So, after work, I stopped at the Brewpub and used their kiosks. I bought a program for 3 bux and studied it a bit and I did an exacta for Big Blue Kitten and Sleeper. I also did a trifecta for Materiality and Madefromlucky with American Pharoah, plus an exacta for AP and Frosted. Picked up Preggie, went back and found out I won the undercard. WOW!

Visited for food regularly only after that, but it changed when Preggie went to Parkview. I would watch Delta Downs or Charles Town while thinking of how would Preggie would live, with his health problems. Jonah would make me a cocktail, I get pretzel bites, and relax. Several of the staff would ask about Preggie’s health. I did not want to bother cooking big meals at home. Just give me a Diet and a burger, please.

My work as a sample lady was great. However, it was a far commute. When I have heard that Winner’s Circle was hiring, I applied and went to the job fair for an interview. I was stoked when Human Resources extended a job offer on the spot. And from that point on, I decided to reimmerse myself into horse racing, just like I was a kid. I’m still learning, and I am just learning how to read the workout sessions– 12 seconds per furlong is decent. I stick to two main tracks, Gulfstream and the New York Racing Association circuit (Aqueduct, Belmont, and Saratoga). My favorite jockey is Javier Castellano.

My ability has improved. No, not gonna enter a handicapping contest, I fear I’d pick all horses that would go into last place. But I would look at various sources including the Daily Racing Form and make some reasonable guess. My bosses would call me to ask me what would be a good horse for some stakes in the future. I thought I would stink at the Preakness, nearly avoiding wagering altogether as it was a muddy mess. BUT, I received various information I cobbled up and used them to make the guesses. I even had weird Preakness dreams. NOT supernatural woo woo, but the re-organising of information in my brain as I rested. (Listen, guys. I believe in Sola Scriptura. Dreams, no matter how clarifying, can NOT replace Scripture as the SOURCE of enlightenment and salvation– even if said dream “reveals” the winners of the Preakness, okay?) This was the gist of the information: 1) Cherry Wine won his maiden race in the mud. Chances are, he will excel in the muck. 2) Exaggerator is a mudder as well. Nyquist has not tried running in mud at that time. 3) Stradivari is a threat. So I would follow these contenders and I made a trifecta box and a superfecta. Showed these observations to the bosses. Gave the usual disclaimer. They were foolish to take my advice and they were amazed at the results.

My workplace wanted me to improve in this craft. I am not at liberty to discuss specific plans until things get official, but I will say that the bosses would like to see me to become a handicapping expert so I can teach new gamers how to wager with confidence. When things go through, I’ll announce it on Facebook and on this site.


“All I want is for the illusion of competency to pass over me once a day.” –Nancy Gabalac.

In the meanwhile, I will post some stuff, some guesses that may or may not be crappy. I am excited that I’m doing something that I did as a child, and maybe I would get paid for that. Keep your eyes peeled for Belmont thoughts!

“I will love you today and I will love you tomorrow.”

After posting up the Benny Hill clip, Preggie went to the hospital. He was sleeping for hours and I checked his oxygen. 70%. I called 911 and he was on a BiPAP machine and the folks at Parkview did everything they can to prevent him from drowning due to congestive heart failure. They also found pneumonia and gave him strong antibiotics.

He woke up, but his short-term memory was greatly reduced. He has vascular dementia and due to the various health problems, I was advised to place him in a nursing home. So I did, knowing that he will be in a safer place than home alone while I work.

So now, everyday, I visit Preggie. Wheel him around the facility, getting to know the CNAs and nurses who help him. He now lives in a private apartment, and I put up pictures and diplomas on the walls. I would bring snacks to put into the pantry and cans of Diet Coke for him to enjoy.

January was a hard month for me, with the transitioning, plus a medicine change for me. Olanzapine made me gain 60 pounds and the good shrink and my family doctor figured it’s too dangerous for me to remain. So the shrink placed me on Geodon. BIG MISTAKE. It did not make me feel good. It gave me extrapyramidal effects (aka “the twitchies”) and I felt very fragile. During Symposia, a retired District President noticed that I was not at my best and he prayed for me as I tried not to reduce myself into a weeping puddle. I JUST CAN’T EVEN. So I told the shrink that I need a different medicine. So I was placed on a new generation medicine called Rexulti. The shrink warned me not to drink my usual Rockstar. She was right. Energy. Alertness. 3am, waking up alert. But, the melancholia disappeared. So I coped better with the transition.

My mom came to visit us, and we cleaned up the house of years of clutter. Bags of ill-fitting clothes went to the Salvation Army. Old junk was tossed out. The fridge and pantry was cleaned out and I got new food to replace old products. My bedroom has changed. A twin bed in place of a queen-sized bed, my makeup table, and a bookcase. My office will be my parents’ bedroom. They will stay with me.

During this time, was I angry at God over all this? Believe it or not, NO. Not pissed off at Him at all. You see, Wayne smoked for decades, from his college years on. Preggie brought it all to himself. He was addicted to these cigarettes. There is a visible cause-and-effect, it was not an “Act of God.” I made sure that Preggie and I get spiritual care during all of this. I arranged for the pastor to give Preggie the Sacrament weekly. Now that I wake up early, I attend early morning church and I too receive the Sacrament. I would listen to Pirate Christian Radio and Issues Etc. I love listening to people shredding Theology of Glory hucksters and pious claptrap from the dominant Protestant culture. Confessional Lutheranism is my last stop. I cannot go to other places, can’t go home to Rome, can’t swim the Bosphorus to Constantinople, can’t stroll to Azusa Street, and certainly I can’t be an atheist.

I also got a new job. Yesterday was my last day at the Kroger Marketplace at Coventry. I was an event specialist, a sample lady. But I need to be closer to Preggie and needed regular hours. So now, I will work as a hostess at Voodoo BBQ inside the Winner’s Circle Brewpub and off-track racing. I need a high energy environment. I got to know my new coworkers and regulars who would follow simulcasts and betting on stakes and maiden races. I immediately had a crash course in horse racing. I subscribed to the Daily Racing Form’s online site, learning to read stats and past performances. I’m learning about the progeny of Tapit and Mr Prospector and Storm Cat. I’m learning which jockeys at certain parks are good performers. In a few days, the folks at Hoosier Park will train me and other new workers at their casino in Anderson, then various test runs back in New Haven. I am very excited about my new job.

I told people to pray for us and to check up on me regularly. And during all of this, I hold my Preggie’s hand and we tell each other “I love you.” I hope we continue to say this to each other as much as possible, as long as possible.

Makeup Fukubukuro!!!!

DO I FEEL LUCKY, PUNK?

Sometimes, I would buy a mystery bag of something. It’s hit or miss but it’s enjoyable to guess what I will get. One year, I got almond-colored caulk from the hardware store. Another time, I got 500 floppy disks (which I dropped off at the computer lab at Ivy Tech, and giggled when the profs wondered what the frell does a box of 500 floppy disks has shown up out of nowhere). And if I go to a place where Sanrio has a shop, I always buy their grab bags. To this day, I drink coffee from a blue Hello Kitty mug.

So here I am in the Hoosier State, with no Sanrio in sight. Woot crashes on my browser when their Bag of Crap is offered, and I am really not interested in almond caulk.

This year, the guys and gals of Beautylish has something for me.

For 75 bux, I bought a lucky bag of makeup. I was glad to see past pics from fortunate customers. They got Z Palettes and Lit glitter and that thing in which streaks your hair an unnatural color. Some even have a Wayne Goss brush.

Watch this blog so I can post pics of this year’s Bold Lucky Bag!

The Renaissance of My Mind

Several things prompted me to update my blog, but one factor came out: My mind is more clarified and light-hearted. No, I did not attend some cultic “auditing” session. How my mind got more motivated is quotidian: my medicine is Just Right. Not only that, I eat better.

It started when I was taking medicine for bipolar disorder (do not know whether it is I or II or in between). I found out that autistic people tend to have co-morbid disorders. That is, if someone is autistic, chances are he is struggling with other disorders. I was no different. What happened to me in 2005 triggered the whole damn thing. Tried various medicines, including one for ADHD. (Ended up in an emergency room when the Concerta speeded up my heart.) So I did some research about how autistic people cope and I found a psychiatrist that also does Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. After tell her my story, she asked me some questions, and she said: “Your previous doctor should not given you that Concerta in the first place. You do not have ADHD, you have bipolar disorder.”

“What?” I then told her about the various stereotypes of bipolar folk I heard over the years via media: periods of happyhappyjoyjoy…then ohf*ckIwanttodie; the periods of wild and manic behavior– wild sex, wild shopping, impulsing Type A behavior that would fit well in an 80s drama movie. She told me that in real life, it’s more of a period of irritability than the high joy. At last I had an explanation, a diagnosis that made sense.

Over time, I tried some types of medicine and found one that really helped me. But it came at a price: I gained weight. I returned to Atkins and stuck to it for over a year, but it did not work. And I still have those sad episodes, though less frequent and I was in a doldrum-like state. But it was better than the alternative.

I was driving from an assignment in Warsaw IN when I had an episode. I called Preggie on my cellphone and he told me that I must stop my low carb diet. He has suspected that my diet made my mind crummy, despite the positive treatment. So I ended up going to a pancke house and ate pancakes and hash browns. One hour later, something happened. That fog lifted. I arrived at my assignment in Columbia City very energetic, as if my medicine actually worked better than ever. Later, I found out that my brain must function with carbohydrates.

Voraciously, I ate plenty. Granite City pretzel breadsticks… Thick fries at Red Robin… Ample portions of spaghetti, and other things passed my lips. I gained 40 pounds, but I did not care, for I had to choose between my mind and my body and I chose my mind. It was only when Preggie told me that he was concerned with my weight and increased risk of diabetes. I finally have to care. I cannot buy new clothes every month when I gain a size. So I am now on Weight Watchers, and it does work, so far– about 7 pounds lost.

Today, I regularly take Symbyax and Nuvigil to counteract my drowsiness caused by Symbyax. My regimen works very very good. I am grateful for that, for I have heard that other people who have bipolar disorder would try every type of medication only to have nothing happening or worse, adverse effects.

Yesterday, one of the fieldworkers at my church told me he misses seeing new articles on my blog. And who can deny him his enjoyment? I have no excuse to let my life get neglected because I work and what had happened to me. I had an idea to write something on the prophet Joel and the calling of a ‘Sacred Assembly’ as I remembered my former pastor at the Assembly of God church used that verse to do some revival service.

My mind is better. Thank you for your prayers. And I hope I continue to feel better.

Impossible Christmas Wishes

Between the merchandising work and posting snarky “trololo” pics on Facebook, it is a rare thing to maintain the blog. But I am so glad to find time now.

The Christmas spirit is strong throughout the 15+ stores I visit in Indiana and Ohio. Everyday, I get to listen to holiday songs. Right now, I do not mind the piped-in music as I tolerate that better than the usual soft-rock/easy listening crap I hear the other 10.5 months of the year. The gifts for sale are proudly displayed on the shelves, waiting for some guy seeking something practical.

Me? I seek also the impractical and the impossible. I have already purchased work clothes that conforms to the dress code I must follow. I’ve braved the Black Friday queue at Best Buy so I can replace my aging netbook. And the Prediger is going to buy me the Urban Decay 15th Anniversary eyeshadow set. But those impossible dreams remain. And they involve people I won’t be able to see again.

I want to let them know that I am doing okay with my life. I enjoy my job, I’ve figured out how to manage my manifestions of Asperger’s Syndrome, and most of all, I found the love of my life.

An example: The presidential races and church/state issues reminded me of my history professor, a Confessional and a pro-life Democrat. He was happy that I do not subscribe to the Evangelical/Calvinist Religious Right, but was chagrined when I became Libertarian. If he was alive today, I want to ask about his stance on same-sex marriage. How would he, a devout virtuous guy, come to his conclusions? I do know that he would want me to review past Supreme Court cases and urge me to consult the Bill of Rights. He would also advise me to read Scripture.

Another person: My sixth grade teacher, a devout Catholic. She would be thrilled to see me again doing decently. That would bolster my faith greatly! I doubt my elementary school (now a charter school) still has the means to contact her.

I do believe in the Creeds, about the communion of the saints and all that. They might have some clue about how I am faring and probably are praying for me. But I really want to see them in the flesh and be sure that they got the message. I know, impossible. And no amount of tangible gifts can change that.

General Update for “1Q 2011”

I finally figured out how to get rid of that European spam for cheapo V|@gr@; however it meant that you cannot comment on older posts anymore. After 14 days of posting, comments will close.

Now, for the rest:

With the help of with my employment specialist from the regional Easter Seals, I’m working for one of the largest merchandising firms in North America. She’d call me once a month to check up on my work and this week she will see me work in nearby Auburn. Do you know how liberating for me to be honest with myself, not worrying about “pretending to be normal?” My bosses are aware…they simply care that I do my job right, which I’ve been doing since I was hired. I’m looking forward to telling her that I’ve been receiving bonuses for 95%+ completion, plus a bonus for pulling off one memorable sale involving using Google Translate on my Droid.

From the “You Nostalgia, You Lose” department: I came across an Avon catalog and they have scratch n sniff pages. I found one for Odyssey perfume and it was exactly like I remembered. I looked at the products and wondered whether it would be better to try out their products. The impetus was when I looked at MAC’s Big Bounce Eyeshadows and tested one at the counter. After two hours, it creased on me. I thought it was sub-par for the price listed. I thought: maybe I should try products from a company that has been there for years and do not have to pay for the overhead. So I signed up and I’m now the Avon Lady. If you live in the Fort Wayne/New Haven area, I’m more than happy to help you look good!

Return from Hiatus

Much has happened. Glad I have some time to write up some updates.

1) I’m now a merchandiser. It does not pay much, but the schedule’s flexible enough to attend to my Prediger’s needs. If I ever meet the guy behind Volition.com, I owe him a beer.

2) When not merchandising, I help out at the IT committee at Science Central. I’m learning a lot about systems administration. Got more to observe IRT virtualization.

3) I had to give up Atkins. It was a great diet. But my gallbladder was angry. The surgeon will remove it via an outpatient procedure. But after that, I just cannot return back to Atkins. In the meantime, I have to eat differently. So I’m on Weight Watchers. They have a new points plan, and new algorithm to calculate the allotted points. They even gave me a special calculator. At least I can eat all the fruits (avocados excepted) and most veggies until I’m satisfied.

4) I had an idea that I need to toss out to my pastor (or any other Fort Wayne-area LCMS pastor). I am openly autistic, of the Asperger variety. As a kid, I’ve had difficulties in the Catholic Church, mainly from the attitudes of the parish. There is a big opportunity to address the spiritual needs of those of us on the Spectrum. I would like to see, at the bare minimum, an autistic-friendly church service. If we need to self-stim, we can do that without the glares of the neurotypical folk who do not know the modus operandi of stimming. Sensory matters will be kept to a minimum. The service will be liturgical. (Maybe a social story handout would go along with it.) Over time, catechesis will be available as well as pastors’ workshops helping them out with their own congregation. If his workload is too much, maybe someone else can assist me.

Meh…

I’ve been more at Twitter and Facebook than this blog. For some reason, I’m more comfortable with being a twit and posting up FB updates than anything else. I’m going to ask Necessary Roughness which plug-in could post up a digest of my Twitter updates.

Census work? I’m done, unless the LCO informs me otherwise. Did not want to get in deep doo-doo and have the Bureau give me the banhammer. I did have a great time, with occasional hiccups IRT some one-celled beings. Best person I’ve met was actually an older lady at this trailer park. Will have to bring her some farm fresh veggies, as she grows green peppers.

Just think… I’ve been through three phases (GQE, NRFU, and NRFU-VDC). It helped pay for my car repairs, bills, and best of all, my trip to OSCON. I learned about the resources available for people in need in Fort Wayne. I saw the increase of foreclosures as I walked around New Haven. I’ve listened to the stories of a few neighbors whose children were grown-up and wished they can pay a visit. I saw, for better or for worse, the anti-government sentiment. I have to tell them that we’ve been doing this since 1790, with far worse intrusive questions than today.

Been reading two strictly unofficial blogs, My Two Census and LooseFemme, who has finished her NRFU gig and is now an union organiser in Oakland.

I was giddy when Matt Harrison got the nod for Synodical President. I hooked up my lappy to the telly so Preggie can watch the convention. He was excited that he can enjoy it without travelling to Houston. If we were to attend the convention, we’d be sitting in the back of the hall, watching it from a screen because GK and MH would be specks from our vantage point.

Here I am, back into the jobless limbo. I have a few new O’Reilly books from OSCON. It means between now and “you’re hired” I will have to earn a few bux doing odd jobs. I am thinking of getting a 30 watt soldering iron and practice using it. On the bright side, I succeeded in fixing my Ubuntu part of the laptop. The battery level would warn me that I have FOUR MINUTES until hibernation, despite having a full charge. Glad the updates are there.

Long Time No Blog

It has been a while since I’ve posted something. I’m still alive and well, posting update at Facebook and shooting the breeze at Fark.

Part of my absence is job-hunting, looking for gigs and full-time work. Still searching, though I’ve got temp work at the end of March.

Another reason is more medical. No, it’s not cancer nor some serious stuff like heart disease or something exotic that the Mayo Clinic would analyze. Prior to February, I dread a certain time every month. (ACHTUNG: Womanly matters are mentioned.) The first few days, I cramped hard that I find myself confined to bed. After my time at Ivy Tech, I realized that these times will affect my job search and my career if I do not treat it. I asked my doctor about some options I have, and figured that some procedures will help me. After thoughtful consideration and theological consultation from my Prediger, I decided to undergo the Novasure ablation plus a tubal ligation. Actually, it was not a problem regarding the Novasure; it’s the finality of the ligation that I was concerned. Since pregnancy after the ablation is very dangerous to the woman, plus the complication will mean a definite peril to the child’s life, I said to myself: The Principle of Double Effect can be invoked. I prayed, I thought, and ultimately, I placed things in God’s hands.

I figured that this would be a short procedure, in the hospital by morning, out in the afternoon. It turned out to be a more serious matter. Bluntly, the doctor found two benign dermoid cysts, one in each ovary. One was so big that they removed my left ovary. The average size of an adult ovary is about the size of those green olives– 3cm by 1.5cm by 1.5cm. The left ovary was about 9cm by 8cm by 6cm, like a clenched fist. The right was saved, though they removed a sizable cyst. The doctor told the Prediger and my pastor that I would be in great pain later down the road if I have not been treated.

After recovery, my parents and my pastor visited me and I felt better than expected. The month came and went, without pain. It was the first time ever that I do not have such pain. I’m really looking forward to busy activities and job hunts without getting held back.

As for my sterility: I’ve made peace about it and knew that God has something in store, a role in life just for me. No kids of my own, but it is filled with days of devotion to my husband…lots of doggie kisses from “Teh Sarah”…tinkering around with Linux…and spending more time with the Church. Best of all, I’ll be the aunt who will spoil the niecelings and nephlings silly– and at the end of the day, return them to their parents. :)

So now, that’s my absence in under 500 words. Now it’s time to resume my antics.