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Possible Story Ideas In My Head

These are some of the ideas that are spinning around in my head today.  For some reason I'm having post-apocalyptic ideas today, mostly in terms of killer plagues and such, not zombie type of shit.   

We have sexually transmitted diseases so why can't we have sexually transmitted immunity?  What if there's a disease that is systematically working its way through the population, only a handful of people are immune or develop immunity after surviving the infection, and one of the ways to spread the immunity is through sexual contact?  Which cultures/societies would be OK with this and which would die out due to social/moral taboos?

Lots of stories are about surviving the apocalypse because the MC (main character) is "special" - immune, magical, tougher than everyone else, etc.  What if you survived because you were home bound for some reason - broken leg, anxiety, severe allergies, that kind of thing?  What would it be like to be a survivor not because you know how to deal with hardship or have some cool magic but because you had panic attacks the prevented you from leaving the house, thus keeping you from being infected?  How long would you last once you had to leave the house due to lack of food and water?

Is it even possible to avoid infection?  What is the latency?  How long can the virus (or whatever) live in the air or on surfaces?  If you were home bound doing online grocery would it be possible to get the plague from the boxes/bags the groceries come in?

Most of what goes wrong in post-apocalyptic fiction is due to the break-down in society - no electricity, no gas, no communications, no food production, no shipping, etc.  What if the population dropped dramatically but the majority was at the extremes?  People younger than X and older than Y.  Would we have the same breakdown?  If you lose 50% of the current population but the 50% that survive are between say 25 and 50 years old and spread evenly socioeconomically what kind of world would we be looking at?  Does it matter where the survivors are (Industrialized countries vs third world)?

What kind of governments would emerge after the plague is over?  Theocracy?  Autocracy?  Dictatorships?  Would we still have a democracy in the US? 

Say the virus, plague, whatever, isn't gone - it could mutate and another wave could come at any time.  What kind of restrictions would governments put on their people around movement, travel, gatherings?  Would it be real safety or security theater?  What about in less populated, more lawless areas?  How long would we as a society have to go without another outbreak before the restrictions would be relaxed?  Removed?

Too Much To Do

 I know.  I never blog anymore.  I'm on Facebook now but honestly I rarely post over there either.  I have become a very uncommunicative, anti-social butterfly.  

Work is work.  Busy as hell with all sorts of politics and bullshit.  Some days I like what I do; other days I hate it with the angry hate of a thousand suns.  I have yet to decide what I want to do - do I want to look for another job?  Would things be any different someplace else?  Do I even want to stay in IT?  If I could actually answer those questions (and the whole host of others swirling around in my head) I might be able to make some decisions and move forward.  As it is I'm pretty much in limbo.

So I'm focusing on non-work stuff for the moment.  Things like upgrades and renovations to the house.  Getting new toys now that I (FINALLY) got wifi at home.  Vacation.  You know, fun stuff.  

Here's the list:
1.  Schedule the first home visit with the bathroom re-modelers.  We did the phone estimate so now it is time to have him come out and measure, draw pictures, and provide a somewhat more accurate estimate.  If I'm cool with what he tells me (and I like him, that's a big thing) we'll move to the third step of picking out fixtures and finalizing the estimate.  

2.  Research the various tablets available and decide if a) I really want a table and b) which one.

3.  Research laptops and decide if a) I really want a laptop and b) which one.  
You might ask why I'm looking at both tablets and laptops.  Well, I have a desktop and I use that for surfing the web right now and when I work at home.  I'm thinking of adding a laptop to that so I can work via wifi and I'm not tied to my office.  I also prefer writing on a laptop rather than a PC because I can get more comfortable.  But I don't want to lug a laptop around when I travel or back and forth to work, etc.  Plus sometimes I just want to check FB or Tumbler without booting the PC up but with a bigger screen than my phone.  So I may get one or the other or both.  Yes, I like toys.

4.  Schedule excursion for the next vacation.  Dad and I are doing our usual thing of going on a cruise.  I just haven't gotten around to scheduling the excursions yet.  

5.  Schedule my vacation at work.  This is important!  

6.  Get a new couch.  I replaced the cushions on my old couch and that worked but now I'm ready to get a new one.  

7.  Have Goodwill or AmVets pick up the old couch.

8.  Other house stuff.  Like painting the mailbox.  And pruning the almost dead trees.  And cutting back the plants that are trying to take over since I haven't had time to garden this year.  

I'm sure there is more.  There is always more.  
Now it is time to go to yet another meeting (I swear I spend half my life in those).  I would promise to blog more but we all know I'd fail horribly so I'll just say later.  

We All Fall Down

 I fell today.  Yes, I'm a klutz.  

I was walking around my car in the garage, hit the slight lip between the driveway and the garage floor wrong, realized Whoa, I'm gonna go down, and dropped.  

Luckily years of bad knees and occasional bouts of vertigo mean I know how to fall without seriously hurting myself.  Bad news is that falling on concrete hurts like a bitch even when you fall "well".  

Even though it was my left foot that got all twisted up I managed to fall to my right (thank goodness) so I avoided smashing my bad (worse) knee into the floor.  My right knee is scraped and bruised.  My hip is bruised.  My foot is a little achy.  And despite trying to go limp I pulled some muscles across my shoulders just a wee bit.  

I got up, dusted myself off, checked that I didn't rip my pants, got in the car and came in to work. 

I am a dork.  A sore dork.  


Long Weekend

The last two days have actually been pretty good - got lots done and ended on a positive note.  We...won't talk about Monday and Tuesday.  Really.  Let's just pretend those days didn't happen.  These are not the droids you are looking for.

And now* I'm off until Monday so I get a three day weekend!  I know, I probably shouldn't be this excited over an extra day off but seriously, if you were living in my head right now** you would totally understand. 

No plans.  I should probably clean the house because damn.  Otherwise I got nothing.  I may be creative and write or paint.  I might go run around.  Or I might indulge in bump-on-a-log-ism.  Three days to do whatever I want.

I'm giddy.  GIDDY I tell you!

* actually I have to do a production move tonight but that will only take 10 minutes so I'm not counting it.

** be thankful you aren't in my head with me.  Its kind of a mess in there most days, its so full of work stuff that there's just no room.  Plus, eww. 


No-Work Weekend

I really should be working.  There's a metric shit-ton to do and just no freaking time.  The weekend is the only time I have where I'm not getting bothered or in meetings or answering everyone else's questions. 

And yet here I am on the weekend NOT WORKING!  I did log in to work for about 5 minutes - long enough to block out my work calendar in a vain attempt to carve out some time for me to do my own assignments rather than attend meetings, etc.  Then I logged out and said forget it.  Not working today.  Yes, it means I'll have to work 10-11 hour days this week but damn it I deserve my weekends.

So I'm not working, and not feeling all that guilty about it either.  I am tired and sore - cut the grass for the first time yesterday then today I roughed up the bare spots & seeded, overseeded the front-and side yards, put down plant food + weed control on all the flower beds, spread fertilizer on the entire yard, and watered.  All that after the trip to Lowe's to get the seed and stuff. 

Tired puppy is tired. 

Now if you'll excuse me I'm going to go play.  Or take a nap.  Or something.  Anything but work!


 I'm doing a quickie post before my meetings start just to get my head in the right space.  

After yesterday sucked so much ass I went home at a decent time (5 pm for the Win!), had a PB&J sandwich for dinner (yeah, I know) and read more of my book (Beasts of the Walking City by Del Law).  It was a quiet evening and pretty much exactly what I needed.  Didn't stay up too late, got a decent night's sleep, and woke up actually hungry for once.  Although that probably has more to do with only PB&J for dinner thought, huh?

Right now I'm getting my head into the right place to get shit done here today.  I have a meeting at nine, out of which I'm not expecting much.  Its a stand up where we are supposed to say what we've gotten done, the next task on the list, what is in our way, that sort of thing.  Instead it usually devolves into finger pointing, accusations, and general all around crappy feelings.  Mostly because our PM doesn't know how to facilitate a decent meeting to save her life and doesn't care to learn.  I want our interim PM back - she rocked!  The current one pretty much sucks.  Sometime I step in a take control so the meeting doesn't degenerate into the grown-up equivalent of a playground argument but last time I just didn't have the energy and boy howdy!  I don't know what I'll do today.  Given my mood recently I might just sit back and smirk while everyone turns on the PM.  (OK, I won't because I'm a professional but I can dream, can't I?)

But hey, only 30 minutes, right?  Then I can put on headphones and go heads down for a couple hours to get as much of the shit that landed on me yesterday out of the way.  Then another meeting followed by I hope another couple hours of heads down desk time.  

Wish me luck.  

Brief Update

 I'm still here.  Yes, it has been months since my last update.  Sorry about that.

So here's what's going on in a brief list.
  • Mom passed away January 9, 2013
  • I got back from Texas on January 13th and came back to work on the 16th.  So I was gone nearly a month. 
  • The first couple weeks back everyone pretty much treated me like I was made of glass.  
  • That didn't last long
  • I was finally, finally moved to the Architect team (I've been doing the job for over a year but haven't reported to that manager)
  • It was a move, not a promotion.  Still have the same title and the same pay, just report to someone new and get assigned as an Architect resource instead of a Developer
  • Every project I'm assigned to is currently exploding or imploding or something.  Lots of ploding.
  • Pretty much the only resource left on my old team, the one I'm supposed to be turning development stuff over to, just had surgery and is out for three weeks.
  • Almost everything that was moving to her is back on my plate.
  • Almost everything that was all hers is on my plate
  • I am losing my freaking mind
So yeah.  My stress level right now is not great.  I'm dealing with my grief over Mom.  Maybe not well but dealing.  And I was trying to do better at the work/life balance thing before today.  Now I just don't know.  

I know, I know.  One day at a time, one thing at a time.  I get done what I can, tell all my project managers, etc, what I can't get done, what needs new dates, etc.  And I'm doing that.  Just today hasn't been so good what with lots and lots of shit getting dropped on me.  I'm not quite at my best right now and my ability to bend with this stuff is at an all time low.  I'm trying but today feels more like breaking than bending, you know?

So.  Deep breath.  And back to the salt mines.  

* I'll try to update more often but damn, things are nuts right now.  

Home Again

Got home from Texas on Sunday. 

Mom passed away aroung 10:35 pm Central time on Wednesday January 9th.

I go back to work tomorrow.

Blogging will resume soon. 

Cancer sucks

This is quick and from my phone so please excuse typos.

I am in Texas, and have been for over a week, helping to provide care for my mom and support for my dad. Mom's cancer turned out to be terminal. While there are treatments she got too weak too fast to do any of them.

She is in hospice at home where she is most comfortable. This is the hardest thing any of us have ever done.

I may post my feelings about all this at some point or I may not. Right now everything is just roo real.

Fuck cancer.


DSCN1145 by tanalia9
DSCN1145, a photo by tanalia9 on Flickr.

My new phone. So much bigger than my old one!



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