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Saturday, March 11, 2017

My Post-Lapsarian Diary: on the fifth day, there was food.

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Hello, everyone.

It's Day 5 PF (post-fall).

I find I still get tired more often, and more easily, than I did a week ago. So last night I put myself to bed at 10 o'clock. And that was after a mid-afternoon nap!

I think a part of it is that I need to sleep more because I do not sleep well. I wake up a lot, probably from having gotten stiff and uncomfortable.  

Happily, when I do wake up, it tends to be an easy matter to roll over, make some adjustments to where things don't ache, and doze off again.

Part of it, too, is that I am stuck in a patch of what I call bureaucratic dreams.  See, I don't really have nightmares. I just get stuck in dreams that seem to drag on forever.

The common plot devices that I am trying to get somewhere or accomplish something, and everyone else is intent on keeping me from arriving or doing. More often than not, I know the people obstructing me. This tends to raise the vexation quotient of such dreams.

In the worst of them, I reach a point where I have to decide to wake myself up and just make the damn thing stop. It is a rare event when I can remember what one was about when I do that. I am glad.

I know I had a couple of those.  And when I woke up at my usual time -about 6:30 a.m. - I thought, “It’s Saturday. I'm going to sleep some more.”

So  I did.  I finally rolled away the stone at 9:30 this morning.

No trouble getting out of bed- physically- which was very nice indeed.

Determined to claim back some territory every day,  I opted for a dress shirt for the Rare Book Cafe broadcast this afternoon.  The buttons were easier than yesterday, and I was able to get my right cuff closed.

I got in several hours worth of work with less difficulty typing than yesterday. At 1:30 I decided to try a necktie, and with relatively little wincing, I got it tied. From 2 o'clock until 2:30, we handled set up matters, mostly successfully.  

We started 4 minutes late and ended 9 minutes late.  I am a bit of a Calvinist when it comes to time management: judgmental and relatively unforgiving.

The countervailing view is that, hey, it's the internet, we don't need no stinking clocks.

“You do if you want to sponsor to give you money for this stuff,”  I counter.

And around and around we go, like agents Otto and Olive arguing with Oscar the lab guy on Odd Squad about which gadget came first-  the chickenator or the egginator.

The show itself went well, and I had some fun reading a chapter by Amanda McKittrick Ros-  arguably the worst writer ever in the English language-  to my colleagues to see how long they could go without laughing.  That was a popular Oxford undergraduate game in the World War I era, when Mrs. Ros was still in her lugubrious,  humorless heyday. As an aside, if you want to see how long you can go without laughing, you can find a free, downloadable copy, of her 1897 masterpiece, Irene Iddlesleigh, at gutenberg.org.

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Imagine an Irish Country Hyacinth Bucket, and you have Mrs. Ros pretty much in the frame.

All day, it was a pleasure to notice that, every few hours, things hurt less.  I got outside to get the mail, left foot first down the steps.  Couldn't do that, yesterday.

No mail, either.

I am also getting much better using voice typing.  I discovered that I was talking too fast before. Voice Typing does not like that, and tried to politely suggest that by making the transcription less and less comprehensible.

Voice Typing is not like Siri or Alexa:  she cannot talk. I think I will call her Margaret.

Developing a familiar working relationship aside, voice typing has significantly improved since yesterday.  I just have to talk a little more slowly and enunciate a little less slothfully. Margaret thinks I sound like former South Carolina Senator Ernest Hollings these days.

It is really pretty easy: I open a Google doc,  start dictating, proofread it,  and then copy it into wherever I want it to go.  If Facebook has a lick of sense, it will build in voice typing for being online.

Amidst all this late afternoon euphoria,  and speaking of Facebook, my profile got hacked again today. Thanks to a friend online, I learned that hacked into broad generalization I, like many, use because I just don't know any better.  Most of the time, apparently, when we get hacked on Facebook - or, I should say I think we have been hacked - what has really happened is that someone has simply glommed onto our name and photo and used it to set up an account to try and do things for Fun and Profit and practicing ESL.

My friend explained to me how to go into my profile, make my way to one of the myriad editing points, and make who can see my friends, and the groups I belong to, private. Done, and done!

Nor was that the only kindness shown me by friends today.  At 7:25, there came a knock at the front door.  A nice man stood there with several bags of groceries and instructions to deliver them to me.  I asked if he would mind bringing them in and setting them on the dining room, as I had only one 100% functioning hand.  

He not only agreed, but unpacked the bags for me.

The service is called Swift. I do not know anything about it except that I like it!

And I am immensely grateful to my friend, who lives in Northern Virginia, placed her order this afternoon, and got it to me this evening,  complete with a garlic and herb-roasted chicken! As Frank Doel wrote to Helene Hanff in 84, Charing Cross Road “It is a long time since we saw so much meat in one piece.”

My main meal needs are now met well into the coming week, by which time my friend figures I should be ambulatory and foraging again. It is humbling to think that someone I have never met in person - and who is dealing with an ongoing set of problems of her own next to which, my transient injuries are trivialities - would be moved to make such a nice gesture.

I made a lot more money doing work I despised- for people I knew despised me- as a lawyer, but I didn't know a fraction as many nice people as I have come to know since becoming a mendicant bookseller.  

I joke with friends that Lent is a year-long observation for me, and that one year, I hope to give up Lent for Lent.

And this week, I get to do it!

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