Archive for the 'Living Conditions' Category



I did one of those Ancestry DNA tests a while ago. Finally started getting some hits on relatives that aren’t sixth cousins and such. Some of them were even promising leads; 1st cousins, no shared maternal ancestor.

Silly me, getting my hopes up, thinking that maybe at last I’ve found a clue to who my father may be. I messaged them, hoping to untangle a branch or two – or at least narrow down the list of suspects, since if they’re a first cousin, it must be their uncle, yes? – and then I waited.

And waited.

And waited some more.

The three potential cousins all left me on read, and have left me there for over a week. Which seems really counter intuitive if you’re on a site that’s all about mapping your family trees. Maybe they just don’t want to acknowledge my father’s dark and mysterious past? Who knows.

Still, frustrating. Perhaps next I’ll take the 23&Me test, see if I get any hits over there. Until next time.


Retro Style Games

I think games have gotten too complicated, too layered and full of spectacle and obscure systems.

I’ve come to this conclusion after having spent a deal of time with Dragon Quest XI, specifically the “S” Definitive Edition. Now, I had the game before, and tried to start it four different times.

Four times, I got nowhere. I was bored and overwhelmed by the third town. At the insistence of others, I tried the Definitive Edition, because it has a “2D” mode. Basically, it strips it down to behave in most ways like the old NES iterations of the franchise.

I’m forty hours in and still enjoying it… at least, enjoying it as much as I do anything these days, but that’s still more than the newest, flashiest games are keeping me occupied. Maybe I’ve finally gotten old, and can’t deal with things if they’re not the way they were in my youth.

Regardless of the reason, DQXI is pretty entertaining in 2D mode, and has a pretty good – if bog-standard for a fantasy RPG – story. I recommend checking it out if you’re into JRPGs.



I am a moody creature. Comes with the assorted flavors of mental illness I suffer from. One minute I can be exhausted and depressed, the next full of righteous fury, moving on to a brief period of productivity, then back to exhaustion. The roller coaster is not very fun.

Today was very much an exhaustion day. Had doctor visits scheduled both early and in the afternoon. Didn’t leave a lot of room to work on the writing, and my mood was not productive. So I didn’t do much. Added a couple sentences to Believe Me, and that was it.

Instead I played Scribblenauts Unlimited, which would be good if it wasn’t for the godawful controls on the PS4 version. Just gimmie the regular system keyboard or let me use my USB one. The wheels they use remind me of trying to use T9 texting.

Perhaps tomorrow will be a better day, I hope so.


Gaming Anhedonia

I used to describe myself as a gamer. Every new release had me hyped up, excited, ready to tear into it.

I say “used to” because for the last six months or so that hasn’t been true at all. I can’t stay up half the night with deadly focus on the next mission in Hitman, I don’t drool in anticipation over the next release in the Yakuza series, I’m not twitching with anticipation over getting my hands on Far Cry 6.

I don’t know if it’s me or the games that changed. I know it was a slow process, that each thing released in the last year or so was a little more disappointing, a little more engaging. Longstanding series and new entrants alike failed to light a fire under me. Given that some things – like Assassin’s Creed Valhalla – haven’t changed significantly from previous entries, I rather think it’s me.

I don’t know what to do about it. Gaming is basically my last hobby. Without it, I feel like I’ll just float away with nothing left to do, and the idea scares me. “Get another hobby,” I hear you all say. I’ve run through most of the ones available to me in this state, and they all faded away already. I don’t know what to do.

It seems a silly thing, to be troubled just because I don’t like video games as much as I used to, but taken in greater context, it’s terrifying to me.



My family tree is a bloody mess. Between adoptions, marriages and one whole half of it being made up of giant question marks, I doubt I’ll ever know where I came from.

There’s those lovely DNA kits, of course, but today that’s the cause of my irritation with the whole thing. The other day, a new match popped up. One who does not show up anywhere in the maternal lineage. One who is listed as being a 1st or 2nd cousin. One no one in my family has heard of.

I was a little excited. This seemed like it could be the key to finally cracking into my mysterious father’s side of the tree… or at least shedding some light on which of the six stories about him, if any, are the truth.

Or… you know, not.

I’ve been left on “read” for several days after I tried to reach out to this person, which leaves me with the question of the day: Why on earth would you join a site that’s explicitly for tracking down and sorting out your relatives, upload your DNA so you can cross reference it to the world at large, and then just ignore a potential close relation? Seems rather counter intuitive to me.

Oh well. I am beginning to suspect the mystery of my father will never be solved. Perhaps I should get me a lightsaber, then. Make it more exciting, at least.


Beware the Binge

Netflix is a wonderful but terrible beast. So many shows and movies, all available with just a click of a button.

But it’s a trap. That little bar that pops up at the bottom when one episode or movie is over, scrolling past almost too fast to notice it, that serves up your next bit of entertainment? That’s the death of productivity, right there.

It’s hard to tear yourself away, especially when the system is purpose-built to keep you there.

On the bright side, it also means I don’t have to push anything when I’m sick and just want background noise while I doze and wait for the fever to go away. On the down side, I stay invested and don’t get anything else done.

Probably won’t be a writing prompt today – not because I’m binging Netflix, but because the fever it keeping coherent thought from taking root and being put to use – but hopefully tomorrow.

Until then, it’s Supernatural reruns for me, and bedrest.

Stay safe, everyone… but beware the binge.


Ill, Again

God bless my wonderful constitution…

…is what I’d love to say.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a wonderful constitution, and the cavalcade of meds they’ve got me on don’t help any; immunosuppressants for the win, am I right? So yet again I am sick, though worse than last time. Nausea, fever, coughing fits, the whole nine. Hooray.

So I have to ask for patience from my adoring public. Going to try to do a writing prompt a little later, but don’t know if it’s going to happen. I know every time I’ve warned that I’ve pulled through… but I’d rather warn and then manage than stay silent.

Stay well, everyone out there.


Got Sick

Woke up this morning with all the signs of impending illness: weird taste in the back of the throat, slight fever, headache, runny nose, asthma tuned to 11.

I don’t think I’m going to manage a writing prompt today. I’m not too upset about it, since I’m technically “ahead” from all the days I did two or three, but still feel a bit down.

Hopefully this passes quicker than I’m expecting, so I can get back to work. Stay safe, everyone.


Doctors, Doctors Everywhere

Got another new doctor today. This one basically heard me out, threw his hands up, and said “I can’t help you.”

Then he backtracked, saying what he could do was offer referrals to a shrink, a pulmonologist and a disability assessment specialist, and he could take some more blood for some more tests – apparently when it was suspected arthritis, the previous doctor neglected to check for the rheumatoid factor, which would strike me as an important factor to look for if you think someone might have arthritis, but hey, I’m not a doctor – printed out the referrals and then sent me on my way.

I really wish Dr. House was real. Maybe he could fix me. It would turn out to be some stupid thing that was missed, some minor detail, and he’d catch onto it and make me magically well. Plus, I might get to meet Dr. Cameron. Bonus points there.

So that’s where it stands; I have dumbfounded yet another member of the medical profession, who decided all he can do is play with seven vials of my blood like some kind of bizarre biblical metaphor, and offload me onto specialists. Hooray.

I am so sick of doctors. I wonder if that’s a disease or condition in and of itself. Probably.


Just Write. Right?

“Write,” the voices say. “Write,” the internet says. “Write,” my friends say.

Well, that’s all fine and well, but in order to write, one not only has to have the urge and the ability, one has to have something to write about, which is where the problems start cropping up.

I can’t think of anything of value to put down on the page. I wrack my brain, trying to think of something – anything – and come up empty. It’s getting to the point where I dread my pledge to do a writing prompt every day, because coming up with something for those is becoming its own special kind of torture.

There isn’t much that changes or occurs in my daily life; I have very little input or stimulation. I suppose that causes part of it; garbage in, garbage out as some programming wit or another once said. But I’m not exactly in a position to seek out that stimulation, either… and that’s aside from the current plague.

I’m still going to keep trying with the writing prompts, but if they dry up and nothing takes their place, you’ll know why.

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