Farewell to ElJay

This has been pretty long in coming. The ads and spam finally got to me, so I'm on wordpress now at user name rtayce. My hope is to actually start writing more! And maybe to set a feed to keep up with folks...

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It struck me the other day how similar anger and depression were for me. Each has the quality where I feel like I could grab it by the corner and flip it, but I am often thoroughly reluctant and almost lazy to do it.

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"I'm here because I want the training to pull out the people stupid enough to put themselves in these kinds of situations. And y'alls are here to receive the training to /put/ yourself into these kinds of situations?"

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Last night was the final WRFA class. It was a really good experience, though stressful in kind of unexpected ways, and right now, I'm glad to have the evenings back (well, really, evening, because the Wednesday that was WRFA from 6-9 is now MTR from 6-10).

At the class afterparty last night, Annamarie brought up the BCC, the Boealps basic climbing class. I love the idea of taking a climbing course, and this particular class seemed really cool, because it involved going out every weekend with the same team and working through climbing challenges /as a team/. I love mountains and mountain meadows and the views and the sunshine, and the eating lunch at the top, so the gut feeling is "beautiful and fun and serene and full of good company." My main experience with snow (ie going off-trail on the mission last weekend, the last bit of the Wonderland trip, and the horrible trip to Camp Muir) involves going way too fast and getting hurt, so the related gut feeling is "fuck that". So figuring out last night that this was a snow class quickly turned all feelings of excitement into feelings of "and I would want to do this why?" But of course today I looked at the pictures, and I now have a why. It actually looks really awesome. Even if it does involve *cough* ice axes *cough*. (Regardez). I still can't do it this year, since I want to take the ESAR rigging class and help out with at least a couple of the Course IIIs... but maybe next year.

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Thinking back on the mission last night - a recovery for someone who seemed like a great lady. It was good to be out there; the adrenaline rush immediately got me out of the slump I was feeling stuck in. I wasn't of particularly much help, since I slipped on an icy slope and fucked up a finger on my right hand, but I learned a tremendous amount about equipment (due to apparently being horribly under-prepared). What I had would have worked great for ESAR terrain, but on snow, my boots were full of suck (which was why I slipped). At base, they had us borrow avvy stuff, snowshoes and a radio (all of which turn out to be a pain to pack if you're not expecting it and also with my pack with its broken clip), but what I really needed turned out to be a trekking pole and crampons. Another team member really wanted me to carry an ice axe, but I think with crampons, that's much less necessary (for slides). Though also I honestly am just not comfortable with equipment I'm not used to that I can stab myself in the face with and that takes up a hand to carry. The trekking pole and crampons though - or rather without them - oh my god.

Great people. Beautiful night. Sad reason to be out there.

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Being furloughed in February turns out to not be such a great thing. The SAD tends to hit me pretty hard in Feb (and always kind of unexpectedly, since Dec and Jan are so unproblematic), and it's hard for me to not have a task, a team, and a plan in general. In theory I'm going back to work at Sublime on the 14th, which is not the worst thing in the world. In practice, I'm about ready to start working for an EMS company. I resubmitted my applications to AMR, TM, and R/M. Apparently I'm applicant #68 with R/M, so likely no dice there, but the plan is to call AMR and TM on Monday and see where I stand with them. Or at least get TM to fix the broken link on their site.

Lying in bed this morning, I've been thinking about changes I've been wanting to make in my life and in my schedule. One has been to start writing and to start writing things down (which is obviously happening). Right now this writing is far more for me than for anyone else; a way of restaking my grip on reality and where I want to be, but I want to leave most of this open as well.

Another has been to start going to bed and getting up earlier. I become pretty much a vegetable around 11; the only night it really makes any sense to stay up past then is on Wednesday when I have practica until midnight. I do on that note want to start going to more practicas, but I think this means Max's practica on Sat afternoon. Ok, so bed around 11, wake up between 5 and 7 (which should also help with the SADs), meditate for 15 minutes, godforbid stretch (that's another thing that's been bothering me), have coffee and breakfast, write or practice guitar, go to work by 8:30 or 9. Get off work by 5, go home, practice guitar and godforbid cook dinner and eat, do evening activity of the moment and call it good. Which seems to be pretty ok for sane days.

I also really want to start working on the self-education environment (whether with Alexey or some other folks). So that work will have to be an "instead" of some sort, probably a morning "instead". Which is fine; I'm sure it will involve plenty of writing and reflection, so it'll still help me process life.

Ok, but today specifically: I have two workshop classes with Jaimes and Christa in the U district (which will be interesting and intense and a beating, and all kinds of wonderful). There may be a thing with Adam's store afterwards. It sounds like cocktail hour is happening at 8. If Adam's thing is /not/ happening, I think what I want to do is work on my resume. I want to have three versions of a resume available at a moment's notice if and when I should need it: one for computer and web dev/design gigs, one for pm stuff, and one for ems stuff. So, that.

I also really want to work on creating a website for myself. That's been a to-do item for a while. But resume first.

I also need to drive around and get to know the Tukwilla and Kent areas sometime in the next couple of days before I call TM back. That was one of the questions that burned me on my interview with TM, so it makes sense to correct it before I talk to them again (but also to not put off talking to them again).

Yay, plan! Workshop now, resume/paint scraping later, cocktail hour next. Then tomorrow driving around scenic Tukwilla, workshop, resume or paint scraping, and then Compline. Then Monday, call AMR and TM and finish resume and work on website (unless there's a mission), then WRFA.

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The other problem with no-but instead of yes-and, especially when it's perceived as (regardless of whether or not it actually is) a pattern is that it sets people up for a crouched, adversarial interaction. This means that 1) the things put forth in the first place will be heavily filtered, 2) the things that DO get verbalized, will be done so in a defensive manner, and 3) there will be much less silliness.

3 especially makes me sad.

The moral of the story is that I don't care if what the other person is saying doesn't make sense. Find what does make sense about it and add an "and". Not that I'm not guilty, etc, etc.

The end.

Reaction time

As I was driving home from the studio today, the car in front of me swerved. I looked to see what was going on, and staggering across the road was an incredibly drunk-looking miniature mutt with a very human face. It took me a second to react, then I swerved in turn as the mutt staggered around some more. It took another few seconds to process that if the dog didn't get off the road, someone soon would /not/ swerve; maybe another minute to decide to turn around. Maybe another minute to find a place to do this, park, start walking back to where I had seen it. I didn't find it, or any signs of it having gotten hit, which was both good and bad, since the reason it was staggering around like that probably was that it /did/ get hit at some point.

This bothers me. On the one hand, I seemed to be the only one that stopped. On the other hand, I remember driving around AZ with Alexey whose response times to people being stranded and hurt were much sharper. I tend to be very languid and easy with things I do, with my movements, decisions, the ways I walk and move, the way I think. I'm very 40 in 2. That's not *bad* in the objective sense, and sometimes it's great, but it is bad in the "hasty response" part of emergency situations. It again becomes not bad after the immediate response.

I /like/ the languid part of myself, I just don't like that it's such a default for me. It's something I've been working on.

Goals of 2011

This was going to be part of the 2010 entry, but that was getting to be pretty huge. So to start with, a brainstormy-type list. It's really important for me to get this stuff down in writing; I feel like there are all these things I want to do, but they are so nebulous in my head that mostly they stress me out.

Also put down (today's) interest level (0,1,2,3) with 3 being active, 2 being things I feel I should do, 1 being "meh", and 0 being no actual interest

(2.5) Get experience working for an ambulance company (AMR, TriMed, or Rural Metro)
(2.8) Follow up on EMT classes (CBTs)
(3.0) Volunteer at Burning Man for REMSA
(2.8) Take OEC
(3.0) ESAR missions/hikes/training

(3.0) Hikes in general (I-90 corridor)

(2.9) Self-Education Environment (talk to A about this on Tuesday)
(3.0) QRC cards for DAT
(2.0) Software for Language Bank
(1.0) Volunteer in office for language bank - (talk to Irene about this)
(2.5) Bookfest volunteer

(2.3) Tango (no blues)
(2.5) Guitar
(2.5) Singing and Dickens Caroling
(2.2) Music theory
(2.1) Bartending experience
(2.1) Skiing
(2.0) Suzuki movement training
(2.9) Reading more
(2.8) Meditation
(1.8) Cooking
(2.3) Gardening
(2.3) Microexpressions