too many doorknobs
Wednesday, January 15 2020
I'd thought I'm mostly overcome the post-India illnesses, but last night after painting a mediocre picture, drinking too much, and taking a shower, my diarrhea came roaring back. It was similar to the kind I'd had a little over a week ago in that it was like urinating from my asshole, and it was similarly painless. This time, though, I also suffered pangs of nausea and the kind of acid reflux that antacids was powerless to fix. That diarrhea continued this morning, coupled with a mild hangover. My boss Alex had gone to a business meeting with our corporate overlords, leaving me to join the Ukranian outsourcers in a videochat all by myself. I'd been dreading this meeting for days, but I'd actually done a fair amount of prep work (and had real achievements to point to) so it didn't go terribly.
After that, I felt I could slack off for the rest of the day. For this time of year, the weather was gorgeous, with sunny skies and temperatures in the upper 40s, so it was a joy to take Ramona on our usual long 11:00am walk, which we did backwards (clockwise when viewed from space), starting with Ramona checking her peemail in the grassy strip between the parking lot and the street. As I was in this part of the walk, I chatted with New Dave, the friendly new infrastructure guy who is still in the process of taking over for the retiring Morning Dave. We mostly discussed our discomfort with all the new spring-loaded hallway doors that had just been installed in the building. It turned out that we're both germaphobes, and neither of us appreciate having more doorknobs to touch. New Dave told me about a place he used to work where the office would get free pizza for the office every Thursday, and guys would come in from the factory floor with hands blackened by the ferrite cores they were manufacturing and tear off their slices, each besmirching one of the slices they wouldn't be eating. I countered with my story about the time an old man sliced my bagel in half for me, inadvertently flavoring it with his cologne.
This evening after I got home, I went down the Stick Trail to where I'd been salvaging that oak from the steep part of the escarpment 150 feet southwest of the stone wall and processed a bunch more nice dry chestnut oak while some red-car-driving numbskull monotonously fired a gun down at the schoolbus turnaround. Then, in the murky remaining light, I hiked a backpack load of it home. On average in peak firewood-burning season, we burn through about four such backpacks every week. But the weather has been milder than average for the past week or more. Evidence for this is a large plastic tub (the old brownhouse cistern) outside the northwest corner of the house. All 30 gallons of water in it are liquid.
Ramona in the woods behind the field behind the strip of woods behind the office complex where I work. Unusually for this time of year, there is no snow. Click for a wider view.
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