Derik Badman's Journal

2019-07-07 00:00

Buddy started meowing at 6am this morning. I've tried to make a point to not show any indication I notice when he does that. Don't move; don't get up; don't yell at him. If it's actually time to get up, then don't get up right away when he starts meowing. I don't want him to ever think it's because of him. Thankfully, after waking me up, he stopped, and I got to sleep a little longer.

I've been trying to ascertain if he is acting any different since Zoe died. They were never close and mostly ignored each other, but surely he should at least notice that one day we carried her out the door and she never came back. It feels like he is asking for more attention, but that might just be my perception, since I'm probably giving him more attention since it's not as divided now.

I still occasionally find myself acting like Zoe is around: expecting to see her appear, saying something about the "cats", etc. On the phone last week my mom said she still does that with the last cats she had and it's been quite a few years since they were alive. I guess it will be awhile until I'm over it.

It's another hot, humid summer day, where spending any significant time in my office is unpleasant, so I did some reading this morning on couch in the front room (the parlor?). Lately I've taken to sitting there: it's comfortable, nice light, I can look out at the bird feeder outside the window, and there's room for Buddy to sit next to me for pets, and it's much cooler than the office.

Currently reading too many things at once, so I need to try to focus a bit and get some of them done, especially since I spent the Powell's credit I got for selling them books to buy more books that will be arriving soon. I don't know what thing it is that keeps getting me to buy more books, what void it fills, or need it temporary mollifies, but it's been going on most of my life so I guess I shouldn't expect an easy answer.

Yesterday I finished Christie Malry's Own Double-Entry by B.S. Johnson. I picked it up in one of the used bookstores in Shelburne Falls when we were up there. Somehow in the time I was reading a lot of mid-century postmodern/metafictional novelists I failed to read Johnson. I knew about his "book in a box" The Unfortunates (one of the books I just ordered from Powell's) but at the time it was out of print and I never looked up any of his other work. This one jumped out at me in the used bookstore as I was scanning the fiction shelves. I read a few pages and it seemed amusing so I bought it. I ended up reading it in a day and quite enjoying it. It was smart and funny, filled with the expected metafictional asides and fourth-wall breaking, and even a bit political (not so common with that genre/period). So I'll be reading more Johnson in the near future.

Another recent read, also picked up at a bookstore up in Massachusetts was James Tiptree Jr.'s Brightness Falls From the Air. I'm not sure I've read her work before (maybe something short when I took Samuel Delany's sci-fi lit course), but as I've been reading more sci-fi and fantasy lately I thought I'd try it out. It is a really engaging novel that takes place in basically a single location over a single day. In reading it, like much sci-fi from the past, you have to suspend the disconnect between the futuristic technology in the book and our current tech, but she does a great job of creating an interesting web of characters and generating suspense. The point of view in the chapters shifts a few times in an effective way.

Spent some time today working with █████ on making floating shelf end tables for Lianne's and my bedroom. I don't know that what we will end up with will be stylish or attractive, but I at least hope they will be functional (i.e. not fall off the wall when we but stuff on them). We don't always have all the right tools or exactly know what we are doing, but it's fun to figure it out. It reminds me a lot of doing stuff with Pop in his basement workshop when I was a kid. I always wish I had spent more time learning stuff like that from him. I learned some things, but I'm sure there was plenty more. We got the basic boxes of the shelves put together today and cut out notches for power cord management before calling it a day so the glue could dry.

It's only 3pm and I'm just not sure what else I'm doing today other than waiting until it's time to make dinner. I'm tempted to just go play a video game, though it is probably hot in the office. I've been pretty good about not spending excessive amounts of time doing that lately. I can read more; I could watch a movie; I could prep for the next session of my game though that is a few weeks off still, and generally I prep best at the last minute.