Election 2020

What a dumpster fire 2020 has been, and everyone knew the election was going to be no different. Between covid, and racism, and misinformation etc…it was a foregone conclusion. It was not possible to go well. Despite my best efforts to remain a pessimist, and my predictions that Trump would win again, a spark of hope did still remain deep down inside. I said when Trump won this time, I wouldn’t be crying like 2016, I’d just be furious, but I ended my long, very long day in tears again, hyperventilating and punching my car radio when Trump’s 2 am speech began. I went to bed in a combination of despair and anger, and woke up to…news that was not as bad as expected. Logically I knew it wasn’t over, due to all the mail in ballots that I know need to be counted, but it truly felt over and the morning news that it wasn’t was nice to see. So…it’s still not over, it’s still leaning slightly Biden, but no matter the results, it’s still going to be a shit show dumpster fire.

So…besides that. I decided in late summer to volunteer to be a poll worker. The Daily Show was talking about a shortage of poll workers, because retirees that usually work elections did not want to be exposed to covid, so I stepped up. I had to be at my location at 5am, and had to stay until everything was closed and taken care of, which ended up being nearly 10pm….that’s 17 hours. And while you get paid, and that pay is more than a day at work, my normal day at work is 8 hours, so it’s really not enough money.

You have to do a training class (yearly, if you remain on the list to work elections) but you are presented a lot of information very quickly, so in the end it wasn’t super helpful for the day of. They provide a ton of instructions in books that is supposed to step by step walk you through everything you have to do, but still…it’s so much. There were 8 of us and one is supposed to be the chairman, but we all arrive and no one seems to know who the chairman is. Including the woman who turns out, was the chairman. Now she has worked every election I’ve voted in since buying my house. That’s at least 12 years. You would think she would know what needs to be done, and you’d be wrong. So immediately setting up seemed like a shit show, not taking charge, not assigning jobs, not seeming to know what needed to be done. Luckily there was another experienced woman there who took a bit of control, and we got everything ready, but it was just shocking to me that something as important as elections are left to novices who really don’t know what to do.

I was the first person to vote, since it was my polling place, and we had a line from 6am to about 7:30. After that, it was just small groups and singles fairly steadily, but no real line. We expected a lunch and dinner rush that never materialized, but in the end our numbers were larger than they usually are according to the experienced workers.

I guess I was influenced by the fear mongering a bit, because I had expected issues…for example, you can’t Electioneer…which means you can’t advertise for a candidate on the ballot by wearing a shirt or hat etc, so I expected the MAGA hat crowd to be out all dressed up, and then cause problems when asked to remove the items. It didn’t happen. Yes there were 2 people I saw that had Trump gear on, that we had to ask them to remove, but they did without complaint. I thought there might be some intimidation, although I am in a republican area, and there wasn’t. I didn’t pay much attention to what was going on nationwide, but even today I have not heard anything about intimidation issues in other areas, so that’s good. Everything went smoothly between set up and close.

Because once again, closing was a shit show. The woman who knew more of what to do had to be the first to leave, as she had to deliver the memory cards from the machine to City Hall right away. The rest of us had to stay to shut down the machines, and do the rest of the stuff and leave all together. I had the extra job of taking ballots and other gear to City Hall (which I had some media-fear anxiety about, with fantasy situations in my head of being accosted by Trump crazies and shit, that obviously didn’t happen). But again, with no real leadership, while the chairman did do the things she knew had to be done, the rest of us was left to figure it out on our own. And there was so much she didn’t know, things that weren’t new for this year, that she just SHOULD HAVE. It was mind boggling.

In the end, everything was fine. The day actually went way faster than expected, at least until dinner time, where those final 3 hours felt as long as the previous 12. But it was a long, long day, and given my real job schedule, I was very tired. I had to take the day off, obviously, but I also had to take Monday off so I could try to sleep, and because I wouldn’t be able to work til 3 am at the casino, then work 17 hours for the election. I went to bed around 9 on Monday, up at 4, but it was terrible sleep. Once I was finished I went to Founding Fathers as has become tradition. Home around 2:30, made for 23 hours of being awake. Yikes.

Would I do it again? I’m not sure. If my current job situation remains, probably not. My hours make it really hard. If my search for a new job ends up being fruitful (not looking good, as I didn’t even get an interview for a fucking customer service phone job), and I find a job with normal hours, then maybe. Taking 2 days off, and figuring out the sleep thing is just not practical. But with a day job, that would only need 1 day off, I’d be willing. We shall see.

Quarantine…again…but for real

“Quarantine” has been thrown out a lot when discussing the last 6 months. But as a smart person knows, “lock down” and “stay at home” orders were not actually the same as quarantine.

We were in lock down, with nothing open except essential businesses. We had stay at home orders, to keep away from people and hopefully stop the spread.

Now I am actually in quarantine. J tested positive on the 9th, after being sick for 3 days. He had a fever and GI issues, so I took him to get tested on July 5th as a precaution cuz I knew GI issues were accepted as a symptom, and having a fever as an adult is weird. But he got better, so we really didn’t think it was going to be covid, but just food poisoning or something. Urgent care called 4 days later with the results and boom, we are quarantined. He hadn’t worked because he was sick enough that he couldn’t, and once he had been tested he was not allowed to work until he got results. But me? I kept working 3 more days, cuz I was not sick.

And I am still not sick. I’m not sure how it is possible. The test takes too long, so in the meantime we were still sharing the same living space (separate bedrooms at least), and not being particularly careful about shared items (realized over a week later that we were using the same bathroom cup still, as well as toothpaste). The urgent care Dr had speculated that I’d get sick by the 12th. The 12th came and went, and I am not sick.

Based on the time line of sickness (lol), J will be non-contagious tomorrow, the 15th. I was advised not to get tested without symptoms, because I might be negative one day and catch it the next, so they would be useless results. He needs 2 negative tests to return to work, so we are going to both get tested on the 16th. My results at that point should be clear, and he can begin the process of returning to work.

And regarding work. He got to sign up for disability, however I am sitting here unpaid. Our job does not follow state law, so they did not have to provide 14 sick days to employees as per Cuomo’s law, and the federal law that they do follow excludes companies with over 500 employees (for some stupid ass reason, wtf)

Back to me not being sick. I really don’t think it’s possible that I didn’t catch it. I have a history of getting bad cases of every illness I have caught (all those chicken pox type diseases of childhood), and I fully expected to catch the full brunt of covid (hopefully minus the hospitalization) at some point in time. Am I really sitting here with a body full of covid and NO symptoms? There are stories of some patients only having a headache, and sure I have had a headache this week…but that is just my life! Could I have had it with only a headache? I mean, the tests are going to tell us, but it’s just kind of mind blowing to me either way….either I somehow managed not to catch it when sharing the same space as J, or I had it with no symptoms. And that in itself is scary, because in any normal time, we would have assumed J had food poisoning and not a communicable disease. If we weren’t proactive and took him for a test, we would have continued as normal, he even would have gone back to work 1 day that week because he was better. We would have been super spreaders, he not knowing he had it, and me not having symptoms and continuing as normal. That’s why this is such a problem. All these non symptomatic people walking around. Or people who are sick and don’t have insurance, and don’t get tested, but “recover” quickly and can still spread it. This is not going away. Wear your mask.

Work has been a whole other shit show. As soon as it came out that someone (J) tested positive everyone starts freaking out. Sick calls because people don’t want to be there, some that he worked closely with also put into quarantine (not sure if it was by work, or by the state). The contact tracing seems sketchy, as one of the friends we listed because she had been at our house never got called (luckily she is smart and proactive and got tested on her own, negative). Other friends are calling us, asking why we didn’t turn in their names….well the tracers only asked about the 3 days prior to symptoms…we can only give them the info they ask for. And if you are worried, get your own damn test! Being called by the state doesn’t actually get you anything. Ooooh they emailed me my quarantine notice, big deal. I also live with the positive test, I didn’t just have a beer with him outside on a restaurant patio. 😛

Anyway. I am quarantined until July 23rd, I guess regardless as to my test results. Tho if J is contagious until the 15th, shouldn’t I be quarantined for 14 days after that? Whatever. Just tell me what to do State Dept of Health and I’ll do it. (They send me a txt survey every day, asking if anyone has developed new symptoms, 9 more days of monitoring to go.)

Oh, also, my mom got sick 2 days ago…went for a test, no results yet. But she was our errand girl, and we needed groceries. Luckily Adr has been in town at her mom’s and grocery shopped for us awwwww.

Oh, one last thing. Quarantine is a little harder when everything isn’t shut down. I mean, I’m still totally fine not going out, but I do see an awful lot of good looking restaurant food on FB that I think, oh, I want that, and then realize I can’t, not even take out, cuz I can’t leave the house. 🙁 It’s national mac n cheese day, I want some good mac n cheese!

blah

I’m depressed again. The summer of George Sara is coming to an end. We’ve been called back to work. Short training a week from today, then presumably back on the schedule, though there is nothing official yet. That’s not the only reason why I’m depressed again, but there is no specific identifiable reason.

I have not yet heard anything about the Terminal job, and my attempts to reach out and ask about a timeline have not been answered. I know how they work though, things move slow, and that’s ok. I don’t have an immediate need for the job (I haven’t gone back, freaked out, and thrown my badge yet haha) I just want an idea of when they might start interviewing etc.

Searching for another job is depressing. I am not stupid, I can do ANYTHING, I can train in anything and then do the job well. I just don’t know how to get hired. Not that there are any other jobs, other than the Terminal, that I actually want just….I want something else to do with my life. But I don’t know how to read XYZ job listing, make myself appear to satisfy the requirements enough to get an interview, and then prove that I am the best choice. And there is the same problem I faced 20 years ago, exiting college, where every listing wants experience. Take all these jobs related to processing mortgages. There are A LOT of them, and I could do that. Teach me how, and I can do that. How do I get into processing mortgages when every job listing requires at least 1 year experience in processing mortgages? How do I find the job that gives me that 1 year?

And then there is the salary issues. I am in a position to take a pay cut, and I know that I am going to. That’s fine. But there is a limit! I understand an entry level job, say in mortgage processing, is going to start at the bottom end of the salary spectrum. But holy crap those bottom ends are soooo low. Everyone wants advanced education, experience, etc, but then doesn’t want to pay for it.

I know all these things I’m saying have been said by millions of others. It’s just where I am at right now. Facing the inevitability of staying in my current job because I can’t get anything else that will allow me to financially survive in my life. And while I have been looking at online job listings, I haven’t applied for anything, because of all this pessimism. I want a new job, but I’m depressed about my options, so I can’t get the motivation to apply for the ones that seemed do-able. 🙁

It feels like the end of Summer Vacation, when it’s time to go back to school, a feeling I haven’t had in a long time. The last 2 weeks of freedom, and looking back at all I haven’t accomplished in my 3 months off. All the hikes and outdoor activities I wanted to do but haven’t, parks I wanted to visit but didn’t, crafts I have but not yet attempted and now I won’t because I’m going to go back to the work, sleep, wait to go to work cycle. And as things start to open back up, I’ll be pushed back into being social and attending events I don’t want to attend, and having no “completely free” time because there is always someplace I am being forced to go.

And all this is not to mention the fact that going back to work is exposing me to the virus. No matter how much we clean, or if experts are right and it seems that covid doesn’t spread much on surfaces, I will still be in an environment that is too full of (shitty inconsiderate) people spending too much time too close together in recirculated air. Of course, people are going to fight the mask wearing, wear it wrong, etc. I am having none of it. I will not be silent. No mask, no action. Simple. I’ll end up getting fired for lack of customer service and then I will NEED a job haha.

*edit* Denied an interview for the Terminal position. I did not meet the requirements. Great. I will just return to my dungeon of despair and collect a paycheck for eternity.

Quarantine Revelations

I had a revelation the last few days. I am not depressed for the first time in my adult life. I’ve been off work for 2 months now, and while I was worried about being bored, I am still NOT BORED. I am not necessarily doing anything productive, but aside from a few nights where once it got late, I thought, might as well go to sleep, I have not found myself sitting here saying, I wish I had to work.

This “freedom” to do anything, despite not being able to do much due to virus LOL, has just been so great. With the steroids for the headache I haven’t been sleeping, and I do feel really tired, but I slept 4 hours yesterday, got up ate an amazing piece of toast (what?! It was amazing again today and I’m going to eat the whole loaf), cut the grass, went for a walk, scrubbed the basement bathroom, and got inspired to make baked beans. I never am that productive EVER. In my pre-virus life, I sleep for 9 hours, lay in bed for another hour, move onto the couch for a few hours until I have to go to work and then start over. Is this what it is like to not be depressed? Is the lack of obligation that freeing? The requirement to do something or be somewhere that restricting? Because I am realizing in my usual life, I tended not to do anything on work days, cuz…I was just waiting around to go to work.

So the main revelation, other than the depression, is I think I’m going to quit my job. Not immediately. I’ll go back when called. But I think it is beyond time to move on and I want to do it by 2021. I don’t even need to find a good job, or a job with equitable pay, I just need *something else*.

Sitting here as parts of the country try to reopen, I’m feeling the dread creep in. That dread that I recently realized I have lost. I don’t hate my job, I may dislike my current boss a bit, but I don’t hate him I would just rather him not be there. It would not be the end of the world to go back for another 10 years. But thinking about getting called back…next month, the month after, whenever…I do not want to return to that dark dungeon of miserable people and continue my “work” (I do nothing).

I’ve always had delusions of being able to create a side hustle business out of something I can make…photography, crafts, whatever. You know, live that artisan dream. I know it’s unlikely to happen, or happen on a scale to live on, but these 2 months off of stitching, and surfing pinterest for crafts… I think I need to do something creative, even if that is just working in an arts and crafts store. At this moment, I could see myself perfectly happy stocking shelves at Michael’s, even if it’s around annoying shoppers and children. Just because it is something that is not a dark dungeon of despair.

Does this mean once I go back I won’t fall right back into the easy money, the lack of responsibility my job brings, and this mindset falls aside again? Honestly, I probably will. But I’m going to TRY to remain in this head space and move forward.

All that said….before the shut down the CTRC had posted a job listing for, basically, a community outreach organizer. It’s sort of a fancy official title for a whole ton of the things I used to do there for free. It was exciting and I had thought about applying. Enter the imposter syndrome – I don’t necessarily meet their qualifications, I don’t have experience in X, etc. I need my feminist friends to remind me that this doesn’t stop mediocre white men from applying to jobs, and to just do it! I had pysched myself up to apply, though I had a ton of concerns. Regardless of the pay cut, a job for a non profit seems like maybe not a smart financial decision in the long term. If it’s a contract job, is it a year? 2? Then what, I have to start over again. What if funding runs out? Then everything shut down, financial crisis, makes it seem like an even worse financial decision to make.

Well they re-posted the job yesterday amidst my revelation. Seems like a sign. So I am 100% going to apply. And those concerns? Well of course they are still there, but I am worried less about them. Oh man, in my shower fantasies, I can see myself in the job, doing great meaningful things. I can give the perfect interview, and get hired on the spot, and set up my office in the dirty dusty non climate controlled Central Terminal and be a happy camper.

So off to work on a cover letter. It’s been a while since I applied externally for a new position.

covid-19 etc

It’s been over a year since I last posted, and that was a dream. And before that it was books I read. As I’ve aged, I just have nothing to say here. And with facebook (and other social media that I don’t use like twitter) there isn’t so much need for personal blogs. You just put your single quick thought on another platform for everyone to like and comment on, because you know you have an “audience”. My attempt to return here to do the same never happened. But my hatred runs high for facebook right now, and while I haven’t been able to cut the cord, maybe I’ll end up back here in the end.

Anyway. I/we have been out of work for 4 (or is it 5?) weeks now due to non essential businesses being shut down for the covid-19 virus. I thought it would be a good time to come back and write here, about my “quarantine” experience, but like I already said, I don’t have anything to say. Initially our shut down was set for 2 weeks. Then 3, and now indefinite. When there was an initial report that we’d be shut til April 20 I had a moment where I thought WTF am I going to do for a month? I’m gonna need to go get a job at walmart for something to do. But the 20th is 2 days away and it looks like NY is shut down at least until May 14th now…another month. And…I am not sad. Or bored.

Previously, when I forgot I had scheduled vacations with no plans, and I just sat home for 9 days with nothing to do, it was a struggle. But honestly, I am not having many issues here. I have crafts to work on, books to read, tv to watch. I have fallen into a routine where I don’t turn the TV on until around dinner, or even after, and I read in the afternoon. Night time brings tv, crafts, movies (watching all the Marvel movies in chronological order). There is no where to go except the grocery store, so we’ve gone in the car to drive around and play pokemon/wizards unite. When the weather was getting nicer (before this week where it decided to snow every day!) I was going for walks, looking forward to being in the garden. I haven’t been “forced” to go to bars, and listen to shit music I can’t stand, and be social with people I don’t like. And of course, I haven’t had to go to work. I keep saying, that I am living my best introvert life right now.

This week wasn’t particularly great though. I’ve been on these new injectibles for migraine treatment for about a year, and I’d say they’ve been more successful that previous treatments. But not this week. I’ve had this current headache for 6 days now, which hasn’t happened in a long time. And that brings annoyances and irritation. Like J’s constant coughing/throat clearing/human noises like breathing and chewing. Driving me nuts. And interactions with my mom bring me nothing by aggravation. And I know I’m being an asshole but I can’t stop. I am so annoyed by everything, and given that there is no where to escape to, there is no where to be alone. And J hit a parked car with my car. Great. Right bumper and side panel is fucked, and it should not be driven cuz there is a bad noise of something rubbing against the tire. So even if I wanted to escape in my car while he is using his (since now he has to), I can’t, until HE gets it fixed.

All this weirdness has opened up new ways to stay in touch. Not to say I haven’t stayed in touch with Eric, Adr and Mary, we have a group chat through FB, but we have used a video chat app to have drinks “together” and play online trivia, which has been fun. A few people I haven’t talked to in ages…I mean, 20+ years…have reached out, which is weird but also nice.

And since, for the most part, I am not having issues with this isolation I have started to worry that going back to “normal” life, whatever that ends up looking like, is going to stress me out.

A few things I do “miss” though…I desperately want to get my hair cut, but I can’t. And I can’t wait to be able to go to a sit down restaurant, be waited on, be served hot food (not take out!), and have dishes be taken away to be done. (I did put my foot down regarding household chores, I refuse to do any more dishes. That is J’s job now. If I’m going to be the one doing all the cooking, and cleaning, yard work and laundry I absolutely am not doing anymore dishes or putting the laundry away, and I’d rather like to not cut the grass either.)

And the internet is horrible. Facebook is horrible. It’s just full of everyone’s stupid opinions, political shit, and everyone is getting even meaner than normal. Quarantine stress? I guess but….wtf. It’s awful. It is not helping.

I guess that’s it. Maybe it won’t be a year til I have something to say again.

dream

There was this band made up of 10-12 high school students who everyone in the area loved. So we went to go see them play at the Rainbow Mall, and it was packed. It was me, Adr2, Bliss, Adr2’s mom and another person who was sometimes Adam, sometimes Jason, sometimes just a figure. Adr2s mom loooved this band, and she’d be dancing and singing along. I had to find the bathroom or something, so I left and went to the back of the mall, but by the time I got back they were gone. I didn’t have my phone, but I had a weird Sega Gamegear looking internet accessible device, and Adr2 had txt that she’d had enough and had gotten a cab home. So now Adam and I didn’t have a ride home. So we’re outside the mall after the show, and Adr2 shows up again all panicky. Bliss and her mom never came home so she had gotten a cab back to the falls. I’m like, it’s probably fine, they’re probably there now, you just missed them in passing. But we still have no ride, so I txt Adam, who apparently is not with us anymore, to see if he’d come back and pick us up but he’s like ok it’ll be an hour and a half, so I’m like nm, we’ll get an uber. But Adr2’s still freaking out that they are missing, so I’m like fine, let’s go walk to where the car had been parked. So we end up on goat island looking for them, and suddenly Bliss is there holding this giant ball…think large beach ball, or slightly smaller than normal fitness ball, and she’s also panicky and is like “I was just given this ball” and we’re like, big deal, but she’s like, no there’s a message on it. She turns it around and there is writing on the ball basically saying that mom had been kidnapped, and there was a bunch of anti-semetic stuff about why she had been taken. So now I’m like, ok, enough we have to call 911. So I call on a flip phone and explain that she’d been kidnapped and we got a message from the kidnappers, and the cop says well they could send someone out, but it costs a lot of money, and they just don’t have it, so basically they weren’t going to send anyone. I’m trying to beg just to have a cop on their regular drive arounds come find us and check all this out, but they wouldn’t. So basically we have to investigate ourselves. We manage a car or a ride and we are driving through the falls, but I’m lost and don’t know where we are or where we are going really. We pass a house that is related to these kids in the band, so we sneak inside even though there are people there, and we end up in the attic. But there are 2 kids up there going through luggage and we don’t want them to see us. So I like…use brain power…to get them to find some silly string, and they start spraying each other, and then us, with silly string. So I guess I conjure up some more and everyone is spraying silly string. We are kinda laying on the floor of this attic and this wood panel above us gets sprayed with string, and suddenly names appear on this board. It’s all the names of these kids in the band, and somehow we know it’s like some kind of occult blood pact somethingsomething. There are other random words on it, anti-semetic, and one is “dominion”. So we sneak back out of this house and into our “car” which is weird because we are facing each other across a table like on Amtrak. We start driving again, and pass this big church, which is a Jehovah’s Witness kingdom hall….but not like real life ones which are just little buildings. This one is giant, and ornate while being plain all at the same time. It’s name is Dominon so we’re like, this must be it we have to go in. There are all kinds of stairs and woodwork and everyone is really friendly. We wander around and find little references to the things on the attic board, so we think we’re on the right track. But we want to leave, and can’t find the exit so we ask and a lady says it’s down these stairs, so we go down, I was first. I get past a few steps and suddenly it’s like SUPER gravity, and I’m like, omg I can’t lift my arms. There is so much weight I can feel it pulling on me. But we keep going down because it’s the only way out. Downstairs there are other people in different poses, because they are like stuck, there is so much gravity. I can see the door so I keep trying to get to it, but Adr2 and Bliss are basically all giving up, so weighted down and not moving. So I’m like, come on, you have to keep moving. I start screaming trying to motivate these people to keep trying. I get to the door and open it, and while the gravity doesn’t wooosh out, it gets a little easier, and people are like waking up and starting to try to move. So we all get out, and back into our train car, and it’s like we’ve got it all figured out. This band is evil and trying to take over the world or something. We end up driving our train basically through a school and we pass the band all sitting together, so I make whoever was driving stop. The smug kid who leads the band walks over, and acts all triumphant and tries to get us to do something, but I’m like NOOOO, and he looks at me and is like, you think I don’t have the support of the devil, and his eyes are just black holes now, and he’s grown horns, and another devil-y friend joined him and they tell us to stand up, and Adr2 and Bliss start to stand, but I yell SIT DOWN and they do, and I just look at the 2 boys and I’m like, you think you’re the only ones with power? And they realize that they can’t match me (lol) and give up and give Adr2 a gold box that is supposed to let her find her mom. She opens it and there is a piece of paper with an address inside, but then it says Jason at the bottom, and I realize he has disappeared (cuz apparently he had been there LOL) and I’m like shit, where’d he go, now we have to find him before we leave….

December 2018 books

I might make it to 52 this year!

50. 2am At the Cats Pajamas by Marie-Helene Bertino – 24 hours in Philadelphia as a group of characters lives intertwine, sometimes in big ways, sometimes small. They all converge at a jazz club who is struggling to survive. Cute story, quick read.

51. The Immortalists  by Chloe Benjamin – this book was on a ton of “to read” lists. It was fine. I liked it. But I expect books on must read lists to be mind blowing, and it wasn’t. The story follows 4 siblings after they visit a gypsy who tells them when they will die, and who was accurate. It’s interesting enough but I wouldn’t tell everyone on earth that they need to read it.

52!!! The Professor, the Banker and the Suicide King by Michael Craig – a non fiction poker book about the biggest stakes game(s) in the world. Between a group of Vegas poker pros and a Texas banker. The story is good, but the book is repetitive in it’s telling. It could have been half as long and still told the story well. But alas. You get little bios of all the pros, and Andy Beal the banker, and a good deal of talk of all their matches. A poker game is a poker game is a poker game, and they didn’t aaallll need to be discussed haha.

53. The Music Shop by  Rachel Joyce – If you like music you’ll like this book. A very cute story beginning in the 80s, about a man who owns a record store and is able to always find the music a customer needs at that moment. Romantic without really being a romance, and great reverence for music and what it gives you if you really listen.

I’m still in the midst of HP5 and started a new one but I’m unlikely to finish either in the next 5 days. 53 though, a new record! I think I need to also start a list of books I want to read and the reason why, so I can remember when I’ve completed a book and was left wondering what interested me in it in the first place.

November 2018 books

47. You Can’t Be Neutral On A Moving Train by Howard Zinn – a historical memoir of Zinn’s involvement in the civil rights movement in the south, as he taught in Atlanta and then Boston. I bought it after the election to feel inspired, but I didn’t realize it was a memoir, so it didn’t have that exact result. But a great read.
48. Blackout by Connie Willis
49. All Clear by Connie Willis – these 2 books were excellent. The future discovers time travel and historians use it to get first hand knowledge of events in the past. These 2 focus on WWII, but something goes wrong and the historians get stuck in the past. The books follow them as navigate their current situation and try to figure out how to get back to the future. That might not seem super fantastic but they are. The characters are likable and you care about what is going to happen to them as they face challenge after challenge.

In Progress: HP5, some poker book, The immortalists

October 2018 books

42. Less by Andrew Sean Greer – a book that was on yet another list of funny books that wasn’t funny. There was the odd amusing bit, the irony of Mr Less’s life, but it was not funny. A story of a gay author who goes on a world tour to escape the fact that his ex is getting married. A comedy of errors happens from time to time, but as a whole, he’s reviewing his sad life, and it’s just sad. It has a happy ending, but…I only kept reading because I kept thinking it would get funny.
43. The Girl with the Red Balloon by Katherine Locke – a teen historical fiction, and the most recent historical fiction book I’ve read – Berlin 1988. There is a bit too much teen drama/love story in it to be ranked against some other teen classics, but it’s a good quick read, with a good connection between the main characters history and her current situation.
44. Forever Barbie by M.G. Lord – I watched the Toys that Made Us on Netflix and the Barbie episode mentioned this book. I looooved Barbie, I still love Barbie. The book is a history of Barbie’s beginnings and history, sociological theories, and controversy. It’s interesting if you like Barbie.
45. The Guest Room by Chris Bohjalian – another book from some list that sounded interesting. I don’t remember why. It was alright, an action thriller. Made me want to find out what happened, but not “high literature” by any means.
46. The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker – from a list, again I don’t remember why it was appealing, but it was a good read. 2 women meet in college and end up working together in animation. A lot goes on, it almost feels too much, but then again I don’t know what could have been taken out. Friendship and family, life and death, a bit sad, but enjoyable.

In Progress: Harry Potter 5

September 2018 books

38. I’ll Be Gone In The Dark by Michelle Macnamara – True crime on the Golden State Killer, published right before he was actually caught. Reads like fiction, until she died mid-writing and associates had to finish it. Unbelievable at times, and paranoia inducing haha.
39. Shrill by Lindy West – about feminism and fat, great book for women to read about being women.
40. Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh – I loved this book when I was a kid so I wanted to reread it and see why. I learned to play Town, which I did all the time. But the story itself is kind of sad. I still enjoyed it but I didn’t at all remember the sadness.
41. The Flying Troutmans by Miriam Toews – enjoyable read, a road trip story surrounding a slightly screwed up family. A mother with severe mental illness goes into the hospital, and her sister takes her kids to find their dad. Sounds sad, but is actually funny and amusing with good characters, and not a depressing ending lol

In Progress: Harry Potter 5, Forever Barbie, Girl with the Red Balloon