Kiss5Tigers

The 5 Tigers represent the big things in life. This blog is about facing them.


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Selfish or Lazy

I had a run-in with one of my roommates today. She is frustrated by something I don’t do, which is mostly because it just doesn’t occur to me.

“I know you like to blame it on your bipolar, but I can’t tell if you’re being selfish or lazy,” she said.

Now I try very hard not to blame character flaws on being bipolar. Taking on too many projects, shopping too much, yeah those are bipolar. Not watering the pets, well, that’s just not thinking of it. Since my roommate handles it most of the time, it just hasn’t been on my radar.

So that brings us down to selfish or lazy. I don’t think it’s selfish. I’m not thinking of myself ahead of others, I’m just not thinking. It’s not a case of “that task is beneath me” so much as “oh, is that something people do?” Although I will own that there are a few times I feel like, that really isn’t my problem. But if I am asked to handle it, I generally do.

Like vacuuming. I don’t think the carpet looks bad but my roommate sometimes does. He won’t ask the other roommate to do it, but he’ll ask me. He asked me the other day with her in the room, and they were both so gleeful. “You have to learn to vacuum,” he said. “You have opposable thumbs, you should be able to work a lighter and run the vacuum.” (My inability to work a lighter is an on-going source of amusement. To me as well.) I know how to vacuum. The sound of the vacuum cleaner is very difficult for me. I grit my teeth the whole time it’s running. But it has been decided for me that this is my chore, and I don’t want to be responsible for it. Someone must vacuum while I am deployed for work. Let that person continue doing it.

Anyway. I’m not mad, just saying.

So my roommate is irritated that I don’t change out the pet water, more so because my cat dips her paws in it and that tracks in cat litter. I don’t blame it on my bipolar or on being selfish. I can’t even say I’m lazy about it, because it isn’t a decision to not do it. I simply don’t think of it. It doesn’t occur to me to water the pets. Now it has been brought to my attention. So my solution is, I will change out the water while I am making breakfast. The toaster takes 5 minutes and I am standing there with nothing to do, I can change the water.

I said as much to my roommate. It defused her anger. She seemed surprised. I suspect she is ascribing motives to me that just don’t exist. I am oblivious in this matter more than intentionally avoidant. It’s not that big a deal to me and it’s huge to her, so I can just add it to my list of morning tasks. Like scooping out the cat box every time I go to the bathroom. If I lived alone, it would be scooped maybe daily, maybe 3 or 4 times a week. But one of the roommates kept complaining about the smell so I scoop it more often. I don’t understand why cat poop in a cat box smells and cat poop in a trash can doesn’t, but whatever.

So we’re down to lazy and I don’t think I can even own that. Lazy to me is an intentional decision to do nothing. I am very seldom doing nothing. I am often doing things that don’t look important to the people around me — like writing this blog instead of emptying my suitcases — but that’s a matter of personal priorities, not laziness. Yes, I am comfortable in my bed with the suitcase on part of it, I don’t know why that’s a problem for my roommate, but it is.

The biggest thing that looks lazy I think is the state of my bedroom. It’s bad, I know it’s bad, but I don’t even know where to start. I get in there and look at it, and get overwhelmed and walk away. Lazy isn’t the word for that. I know it needs to happen, I just can’t seem to find a plan of attack. Though emptying the suitcases will make a difference, I’m sure. This is an example of me being avoidant. But I am doing other tasks, so it’s not lazy.

In other news, I joined a gym today. I will start tomorrow. I had to buy new sneakers because the inner soles are pulling up in my old pair. I guess I need to throw away the old pair, come to think of it. But yeah, I needed sneakers and a lock for the locker. I’ll pack up a bag in the morning and go before group.

I need to get out some of my received mail and take a picture of it for This Zine Has Issues. I wrote a piece for the second issue and the editor asked for the picture. I’m published in the first issue, woot woot! Now I need to reply to the letters.

I should hear by the end of the week about the 911 operator job. I kind of hope I don’t get it, because I want to do other things. But if they offer it, I will take it. I might just make it through the training and decide it’s not for me.

I am still owed a check from the job at Michael’s. I got the first check and the last check, but I am missing the one in the middle. I need to call them about getting a copy of my pay stub anyway, so I’ll just ask about getting another check.

Ah, the 10,000 things that shape daily life. Tomorrow is Monday, a new week with new things. And I will do them. I have a list and I will stay on track. Happy Monday.


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More Work

I am doing my best at work but I feel my shortcomings very sharply.

I tried to fill candy today, and was told to just run the register. Then I was waiting for a customer and I was told the coke refrigerator needed to be filled. Well I’ve never done that, I don’t even know where we keep the extra cokes. Of course then a customer appeared, so it was a moot point.

I just found out today that I’m supposed to be checking my hours online somewhere. First I heard of it. I have to find out more.

Also, I am not used to standing for so long. I didn’t notice my feet hurting because we are so busy, but my back sure gets sore.

Still, I am out there trying. I managed to pick up the phone a few times today so that was good.

I am trying to crochet some slippers. I did fingerless gloves that don’t exactly match, so I expect the slippers won’t exactly match either. I’m using long color change yarn so they won’t even be the same colors! But my feet are cold so I am giving it a shot. After the slippers, I’m back to hats. I ordered some yarn that should be here in a couple of days. I’m also going to work on a present for L. I can’t afford Christmas this year but I can probably make something. F won’t mind too much as long as I do something for L.

I might turn on the space heater in my room tonight. It’s that cold. I’m also thinking of acquiring an electric blanket, but with Charli peeing on my stuff, I’m not sure that’s wise.

I’m thinking of going to bed in a few minutes to see if I can get up early and do some art in the morning. My roommates keep the living room pretty dark — in fact, F would make it darker if L would let him — so I prefer to make art in the mornings when the light comes in the windows. It’s brighter then. I can see the colors clearly. Dim light gives everything a yellow-ish cast and I can think things blend that don’t actually match.

Looks like my daughter might be joining us for Turkey Day. National Gluttony Day, I guess it is. I enjoy getting together with family, but considering the history, I’m not sure how I feel about Thanksgiving as a holiday. Like Columbus Day. Some things are just gonna fall by the wayside.

I want some desert. I really want the coconut custard and sweet rice from Thai Thai. Or maybe some tiramisu. Or hot pecan pie with vanilla ice cream, talk about a sugar overload! Pecan pie is just about my favorite and I used to get it only at the holidays. Now my cousin’s kid has a tree nut allergy so we can’t have pecan pie. I guess it’s pretty serious, because frankly he’s old enough to simply not eat the pie, but some people can’t be around it at all.

Time for chocolate, then to bed.


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The Conversations We Have

This is going to be the first Friday of the month and Infliction has a $5 cover charge, so a group of us is going. Infliction is a BDSM club, so it will be quite an interesting night. No link to this one, I’m afraid.

You can tell, I’m not a prude. I’m not having sex in public (who am I kidding, I’m not having sex in private either) but I like the atmosphere. People are just plain body positive. They wear anything, and if you feel good in it, you’re good.

Last time I was there, I ran into my friend J. J is a cross dresser. He’s straight, so he’s not a transsexual. He has a girlfriend, although I haven’t met her. She won’t go to clubs like that so he goes alone. I don’t know if I could be in a relationship with someone that I couldn’t share my whole life with. But it seems to be working for them, so who am I?

Anyway, J was wearing a fabulous red dress and his good falsies, and it was fun to see him. I just don’t expect to find people I know from other venues (comic cons and renaissance faires) at the club.

This will be the second time I’ve been to the club. I’m not looking for anything, just good people watching.

I am thinking of inviting my friend T, just because he needs to get out. He could bring his latest conquest, or I suppose B. She’s a baby submissive. She might be interested in seeing the scene.

So tonight’s discussion around the house, roommates and I, is what you get out of the event. For me, it’s just to get out and go someplace I’m accepted in spite of not being pretty. For L, it seems to be the eye candy. For F, it’s about the exchange of energy.

There is a member of the group who has a foot fetish, and he is offering to give foot rubs to all the ladies. Another member is a little, not a diaper infant although we’ve seen those, but she has a youngster persona. I don’t find that sexy, but I guess someone does.

For me, I think I come across as a top but I am not. I want a man who is a stronger person than I am. I am a queen, but I want a king not a boy toy. I don’t get my jollies being in charge. And I don’t mean a jerk, I mean an alpha. Very few of those, however, and they prefer the hot chick, which I am not.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a great person, I’m just not hot, and I’m mostly fine with it. Or I’d be doing something about it, yanno? I mean, I could work out or something but I don’t. I could make changes to my body, but there are other things I want to do with my time, so that goes by the wayside.

Anyway, we are coming up on my birthday so I am counting this as a birthday outing. We are going for pancakes afterward, so I’m gonna make them sing “Happy Birthday” to me.

After all, if you can’t get a group of perverts to sing to you for your birthday, what’s the point? And yes, I guess I’m a pervert too. It’s what makes life interesting. Just another way I’m neurodivergent, I suppose.


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Paying For What You Already Own

For the last, oh, 4 days, I have been texting my daughter with no response.

A day or two with no answer, well that could be bad timing. It happens. It’s unusual because you can text back at any time, but whatever.

This was 4 days, and I could see she’d been on Facebook, so I decided to call.

I’m glad I did.

A man answered the phone. We had a hard time connecting, it was as if he couldn’t hear me at first. I thought it was one of my daughter’s friends being funny, so I said, “This is Elcie’s mom. Is she with you?”

“I found this phone in Deep Ellum,” the man said. “I’ve had it for a couple days. This is the first time anybody called.”

That’s probably true. Most people text these days and my daughter lives with her friends so she they don’t need to call.

We made arrangements to meet at the 7-11 to do the phone swap. I figured I’d buy him some cigarettes or a 6-pack as a thank you.

I got to the 7-11 and there was no place to park. In fact, the store was closed down completely for remodeling. Good thing I had a little cash to give the guy.

I thanked the man for being honest. He said his mother raised him that way. I told him his mother did a good job, and he blushed. I think the compliment meant more to him than the money, though no doubt the money was welcome.

In the meantime, Elcie and her friend C also called the phone and got the guy. He said he was on his way to meet someone, and they assumed it was another friend. After I got the phone and left, they met him but of course I already had the phone.

As I was waiting outside her apartment, the phone rang. It was a Houston number but I answered anyway. Turned out to be C. They headed over to the apartment.

The price of getting the phone was only $35. I just resent paying for something we already own. I don’t begrudge the man his reward though. I guess that makes me ambivalent.

For my daughter, the price of the phone was spending an afternoon with mom. She made out pretty good though. We went to Aldi‘s and ordered curry from Thai Thai. We also watched a so-bad-it’s-funny movie called Kung Fu Hustle on Netflix.

So it cost me a few dollars, but I got to spend some time with my daughter. And that’s always good. I wish it was under better circumstances. I think I’m gonna Gorilla Glue that phone to her body.


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Some Days Are Not as Good as Others

I’m having kind of a crappy day.

I’ve been having kind of a crappy few days.

First of all, I went shopping. Shopping is bad. I spent $70 that I shouldn’t have spent on art supplies. They are still in my car in case I decide to return them, but I probably won’t.

Then this cough. I am still coughing. The doctor says allergy. Well, that’s fine, I’m not contagious. But it annoys the people around me. I can’t have a conversation. People back away. This is a nasty cough.

And the whole bed bug debacle. It’s not my fault this time, but I am still being blamed.

I was minding my own business, sitting on the sofa, when my roommate L comes up to me. “Did you poop when you went to the bathroom?” Well, no, I hadn’t, but I instantly felt accused of something. Turns out there was some kind of poo streak in the toilet and it mattered whether it was my fault.

Then L spent the day out of the house visiting family. When she came home, I was in the laundry room. I heard the dogs bark and came out. I had automatically locked the front door when I came through it, and I hadn’t turned on the outside light, so she was struggling to get into the house. I opened the door and got an earful. “I think of you at night and leave the light on and unlock the door,” she reminded me. I was more worried about exterminating bed bugs and my other roommate being sick. I didn’t think of the sun going down. And I certainly couldn’t have predicted that she’d come home when I was in the back of the house.

Today I came home and was met at the sofa by L. She was looking at me expectantly. I had no idea what the thing was. She pulled out a sheet that she uses for sitting on the sofa. “Is this your blood?” she demanded. I don’t know but I’m having my period so maybe. “I need you to check yourself,” she said, “this is just gross.” Well it wasn’t something I did on purpose, and it was so faint I didn’t even notice it until she pointed it out. I offered to wash the sheet, but she put it in her hamper.

F is on me about money. I know I owe the phone bill. Sometimes it takes me a couple of days to get to the bank. I don’t appreciate being told to go to the bank. And I don’t appreciate being asked what I”m doing today with an agenda. He is counting nickels and dimes lately. I am not the bank. I thought we were friends but lately I feel like I am just a source of funds.

Now I know this will pass. I will get over my period and be less sensitive. Things will go back to normal. Money will work out.

My general horror about having a body won’t go away, I’m afraid, but I’m used to that. I won’t enumerate the grossnesses at this time. I’ll just try to convince myself it’s worth it to be able to pet the cat.

And tomorrow will be a different day.


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The Bed Bug Saga

About 2 years ago, a friend and I took a road trip. A couple of months later, we both ended up with bedbugs. We assume we both picked them up at a hotel while we were on the road.

My friend noticed the bugs right away and took steps and hasn’t had a problem since. Good for her!

Me, now, the bugs don’t bite me, or I don’t welt up when they do, so it took me a lot longer to notice there was a problem. (Mosquitoes don’t bite me either, I assume it’s blood type or psych meds or something I eat that renders me unappealing.)

Plus when I first noticed them, they were under the cats. I thought they were some kind of flea. I kept treating the cats to no avail.

Soon enough the bugs migrated throughout the house and became a problem for my roommates. We spent a long time working on getting it under control. I bought a LOT of bug death, since it was my fault that they got into the house.

For many months we have been bug free. But they are back.

Both of my roommates have complained of being bitten. I have no welts and haven’t felt itchy. However, the roommates’ response to this is, I must clean my room.

Because I am now the epicenter of bugs.

Today I spent several hours working on my room. I took the bed apart and sprayed (no bugs in the mattress corners, which my roommates were convinced I had). All the bedding is in the wash.

Spray the hallway, says my roommate, because they migrate.

You know what else they do? Lay eggs in the beds and soft furnishings of the house. Eggs that hatch in that location. Bugs that think of the sofa as home, not migrants from my room.

Oh, but they could be hiding between the dresser and the wall, say the roommates. Spray your whole room. Maybe you should spray up near where the walls and the ceiling meet.

So I have done these things. I figure, there are 2 possibilities: Either there are no bedbugs in which case I’ve done no harm. Or there are bugs I’m not seeing, in which case I’ve addressed the issue. And in either case, the roommates feel heard.

When they go out of town in a couple weeks, and I can sleep on the sofa, I will bug bomb the room. Which I do quarterly anyway. Just because.

So this is a cautionary tale of sorts. Don’t get bedbugs. They are nearly impossible to get rid of, and the reputation is even harder to shed.


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Zines!

*Cough cough hack hack* That’s sound effects. I have developed a cough that I just cannot tolerate any longer. I have an appointment with the doctor tomorrow.

In order to help me feel better, I ordered some zines. Some from Broken Pencil, which I’m so glad to see is still in print! I miss Factsheet5, which used to be for sale as a business. Only I didn’t have $10,000 to give them to own the name. I don’t imagine it’s still available.

I am taking a course from Leonie Dawson about making e-courses. The thing is, I need to pick a topic I know something about. I don’t have to know everything about the topic, but I can’t know nothing. I don’t feel like I know much about anything! And yet I must know things about things, I mean, I’ve lived this long and been pretty successful at it. Not amazingly successful, but I’ve made it this far, and I can keep going.

I am thinking about dinner. I don’t know what I want. Probably chicken and pasta, since I know we have that. Though I could go with a salad from Subway. But that would involve going out and spending money, and I just spent $70 on zines and books. I spend too much on printed material and I have no place to store it.

Speaking of my bedroom, I need to tear it apart one of these days. F and L will be out of the house for a long while on Friday so I am going to see how much I can get done with them gone. I need to move stuff out of the bedroom and re-pack it, but I don’t have anywhere to put stuff except the living room and that’s hard to do while people are using it.

F is having issues with bed bugs in his recliner, and he assumes they are migrating from my room. Now I will own it: I brought the little buggers home from a trip with a friend. She also got an infestation so I believe we picked them up at a hotel. So originally, they DID migrate out of my bedroom to the rest of the house. However. They have already colonized his recliner. I am not having issues in my room so I don’t believe they are migrating, I believe they have been reborn in situ.

F doesn’t agree. I don’t know if he thinks I’m lying or so oblivious that I wouldn’t notice bug bites or what. So I will tear the room apart and spray everything. It’s a pain in the ass but what else can I do? Either I have bed bugs that I’m not aware of, in which case I need to spray. Or I don’t have bed bugs but F doesn’t believe me, in which case I need to spray. To appease him. *shrug*

So Friday, while everyone is out of the house, I will remove some of the big pieces out of my room and spray. Then later while they are gone for a few days, I will bug bomb the room. I can sleep on the sofa while they’re gone overnight and give the poison time to work. It will actually be good to clean my room, I just hate doing it.

Actually, I hate cleaning when I feel like I’m being observed. That’s why I don’t vacuum with people in the house (well, besides the fact that I don’t vacuum, but I’ve already told you about that). I don’t enjoy cleaning to start with and I don’t like feeling watched. Watching me do something that I resent doing makes me very unhappy.

Well, time to find food. My tummy is telling me it’s empty so I’m off to raid the fridge.