July 25th, 2014

accio bow tie

Bow Ties are Cool.

I made an appointment with my doctor to talk about my sleep problems, & he couldn't see me for a week. Then I went ahead & filled in the pre-appointment survey, & he called me up & was like "this sounds sort of serious, I can slot you in today?" & so in I went. Talking about it, he pretty much agreed with my diagnosis about a sleep deprivation loop, though he did through in the wild card idea that maybe I have post-traumatic stress disorder from the surgery. & then I went "wow, I totally have all this crappy cultural baggage that says 'if you weren't like, tortured by the Red Skull for three years in a POW camp, then your PTSD diagnosis is crap' huh? That's not cool." Anyhow, the moral of the story is, he called in the heavy hitters & prescribed me valium. I've taken it two nights now & had similar experiences-- that is, I still wake up fairly frequently, but then if I get up to urinate or just roll over, I'm able to fall back asleep. No freaking out about being abandoned by angels or crickets living in the walls; panic attacks & vomiting haven't even been a factor, & that is such a massive relief that I'm really hoping that I'm actually breaking the loop, not just putting a bandaid on it with medication. Which, frankly, even if I was doing the latter, I'd be happy for it. That is an important step; my phyiscal therapist said she thought I seemed to be hitting a roadblock in regaining some mobility lately, & that lack of sleep could be interfering in my healing. I'm trying to Behave Rationally.

Gerd is in town! If you are a gamer, you know the bond you can share with someone that you have played in multiple campaigns with; we played in Mike's Oisos campaigns together, notably the epic level game, the Spelljammer campaign, & Scott's game, plus he was a key member of my first full Oubliette campaign. I gave him a hard time about how he gave the messiah-baby to an angel after we explicitly all agreed not to let anyone have the baby, & the angel kidnapped it; he reminded me that it was after he survived six attacks of opportunity from a marilith to grab the baby in the first place, & that his cleric in another game had made my orc monk a white cape that let him use the spell wind walk. Good times indeed. Last night he came over for board game night, & so did Alicia & Rasheem & Jess, & if you recall, Rasheem & Alicia were in David's Temple of Elemental evil campaign, so we talked about the star-crossed lovers of the elf thief & the human thief who never resolved their romantic tension, & of course about Rasheem killing Zuggtmoy with a natural 100 on a rod of wonder. We played Snake Oil first, which I dominated, I must admit, & then Cards Against Humanity second, which Alicia dominated. Plus, I put on Jamie Lee Curtis' stripping scene for Jess, because she was surprised to hear that she was super hot. Yes she is (I think Jenny has a resemblance, but don't tell her I said that, because she doesn't particularly like the comparison.)
call of mordicai

Tariq of the Citavita. (29; 9:20)

Quintana of Charyn by Melina Marchetta.

Pluck the barb from flesh.
Clean. Sew with needle & thread.
Repeat as needed.

Phew. I'm finally done with The Lumatere Chronicles. I have powerful mixed feelings about this series. On one hand, it is the apotheosis of everything I dislike in fiction. On the other hand, I chainsawed through the series like a famished wendigo. There you have it, in a nutshell. I fundamentally disagree with the entire tone & structure &...everything of these books, & on the other hand they are an addicting, obsessive read. The answer to both questions is quite simply dramatic irony. The cards are on the table & you spend the book screaming at the characters to pick them up & look at them. The conflict in these books is driven by two things: the grimmest grimdark, like the institutionalized rape of children, or the dumbest of miscommunications. "Suddenly, all the characters you like had swords to each other's throats, because they couldn't take five seconds to have a quick conversation. I'd call it a classic example of Ebert's Idiot Plot if it wasn't so damn well executed, if it didn't....well, work. Basically this book is just "why don't you make yourself feel terrible & stressed out until at the end you get catharsis?" Which...whatever, I liked this book! All these books. They just infuriate me. They did succeed in making me like Froi, though, which is an awfully tall order. It came at the expense of Isaboe, though; she fell quite far in my estimation, especially from the first book where she was the only character I really liked. So. I feel really lukewarm about these books, powerfully lukewarm. Yes I know that is a contradiction. No, I don't care. This series is a soap opera of incredibly damaged people-- mostly, like I said, rape survivors, because especially in the first two books, that's what most of the main characters are-- but I found it an equally incredibly compelling read. If you like that sort of thing-- you might well, because that's a flavour of thing people like, I've noticed-- then you should check it out. When you find yourself gnashing your teeth, don't say I didn't warn you. & don't worry. You'll fall into a hole & ignore the world until you've finished, anyway. That's what I did.