pressure in my jaw joints
Monday, April 29 2019
This morning when I went out to the Subaru to begin my drive into work, I found a film of frost on the windshield. It's getting a little late in the season for that, but stranger seasonal anomalies have happened, such as a frost in early June at my childhood home south of Staunton, Virginia.
There were a couple new roadkills along my morning commute that had appeared over the weekend. One was a raccoon on the double yellow line a little north of Hurley on US 209. The other was a dead deer tangled up in the metal barricade between the north and south bound lanes just north of the Route 28 cloverleaf.
I'd metered my drinking pretty well last night, taking a more-than hour-long break before driving down to Ray's house for Game of Thrones and then having only two glasses of wine (a blush or rosé) there. Nevertheless, though, I felt shitty this morning at work. It wasn't the feeling of a normal hangover, though. Instead, it felt more like the description of a migraine headache (which I've never had). It wasn't pain so much as a feeling of pressure. And it wasn't behind my forehead (the usual locus of head pain), but seemed instead to be centered in my jaw joints. as if the problem might actually be in my teeth (or perhaps, the hypochondiac in me whispered, resulting from tetanus). Mercifully, all the symptoms were gone by about 10:00am.
Throughout the workday, I maintained video surveillance of my house in Hurley using the new Raspberry-Pi-Zero-based bugs. Due to a configuration problem, only two of the three video feeds worked. But they gave me a comprehensive sense of what the dogs and cats were up to. Diane the Cat spent a lot of time darting about the yard, and in the early afternoon Ramona went outside to lay in the driveway to take advantage of the sun. But then clouds began to arrive and Ramona moved inside to the living room couch. Gretchen returned home in the Prius from Washington, DC at about 2:30pm and I could see the dogs Ramona and Neville celebrating her arrival.
I returned home at around 4:30pm and Gretchen told me all about the DC leg of her book tour. Things took a bad turn early when, fearing the ubiquity of ticket-writing cameras, Gretchen stopped at a yellow light as it was about to turn red and some car rear-ended her. This made the Prius shoot forward enough to give Gretchen enough backlash to cause a sharp (though temporary) pain in her neck. She marched up to the car that had hit her and asked for insurance information. The driver responded by saying the accident had been totally Gretchen's fault, though (tellingly) he had no interest in getting Gretchen's insurance information. Gretchen then noticed other people in the car and made a sarcastic observation about the example the driver was setting for his family. But then it turned out that this was a Lyft driver and those were his passengers. By now Gretchen's neck was fine and there didn't appear to be any damage on the Prius (the Lyft driver's car, on the other hand, was visibly fucked-up). Gretchen was tired of driving and didn't want to deal with the situation, so she climbed in her car and left the scene.
The weekend improved markedly after that. There was a delicious dinner at an Ethiopian restaurant in Bethesda with Andrea, two different readings (attended by over 80 people total) and dozens of book sales. A real highlight of the weekend was Gretchen staying up until 1:00am with her parents and NPR's famous Mοrning Edition host Scοtt Sιmon (wait, how can he be staying up so late?) and his wife (they live only a few doors down the hall in the Watergate).
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