Monday, July 27, 2015

Siblings & Paralysis

A few posts ago was Bro's & my version of knock-down, drag-out fight. We don't do anger well in my family <sigh>. At least Bro shares my preference for straightforward communication (speaking of Vulcan, Kazehana, he's an INTJ. Most definitely the Spock of the family, to be appealed to through logic, reason, and objectivity). 

I told them not to come for Gen Con. It's a terrible idea logistically and financially. K can bring Gram down for a film festival later on (hopefully? Othello has been busy with summer teaching and completely out of touch) where being a little old lady in a wheelchair won't be so difficult to manage, there will be other nice films for her to watch, and shy won't fry her brain trying to figure out cosplayers.

Bro & Mrs are suggesting swinging by over Labor Day weekend instead. Charlie and I would be settling into our new place, so could potentially bunk them in my room and I'd sleep in my second room. BUT one of the nurses at work is having her wedding in Las Vegas that weekend, and half the hospital is going. I'm positive they'll try to coerce me into working that weekend.

I have been mostly vegetablizing during a long stretch of days off (I ran once! for seven minutes!) and am faced with the panic of tomorrow being my last free day to complete my crapton of online training for work before deadline on 7/31. Ah well, it's 9 months late already. What's another month? Besides, I legit lost a solid week of function after the contaminated needlestick debacle.

I've somehow started overlapping bingeing and bulking, so I'm chowing down on chocolate cake AND protein shakes. In a quite bizarre place mentally/behaviorally as these things go. Did I have a point to this post? Not sure. I missed the "pleasantly nappy" phase post-Benadryl tonight. It's 12:17 AM, and I am wired.

Saturday, July 25, 2015


I'm an INFJ. What are you?

You can take the test here or here.

You can read about INFJs here and here (mostly copied to this post).

Beneath the quiet exterior, INFJs hold deep convictions about the weightier matters of life. Those who are activists -- INFJs gravitate toward such a role -- are there for the cause, not for personal glory or political power.

INFJs are champions of the oppressed and downtrodden. They often are found in the wake of an emergency, rescuing those who are in acute distress. INFJs may fantasize about getting revenge on those who victimize the defenseless. The concept of 'poetic justice' is appealing to the INFJ.

"There's something rotten in Denmark." Accurately suspicious about others' motives, INFJs are not easily led. These are the people that you can rarely fool any of the time. Though affable and sympathetic to most, INFJs are selective about their friends. Such a friendship is a symbiotic bond that transcends mere words.

INFJs have a knack for fluency in language and facility in communication. In addition, nonverbal sensitivity enables the INFJ to know and be known by others intimately.
Writing, counseling, public service and even politics are areas where INFJs frequently find their niche.

Top ten: INFJs are the type MOST likely to be. . . 


Top Ten Words That Describe Most INFJs:

Empathetic ... Visionary ... Perfectionistic ... Value-Driven ... Conscientious ... Planful ... Private ... Reserved ... Idealistic ... Sensitive

INFJs are “idea generators” much more than they are “detail people,” and they love to discover “win-win” solutions that have a long term positive impact on people. There are two phases of most projects or meetings: 1) the initial “big picture,” “vision setting” stage; and 2) the logistics or “action items” stage. Highly intellectually curious, INFJs shine during the former, and gain much more energy from “noodling” abstract concepts and ideas than doing straightforward detail-based execution. They spend more time than most reflecting on the complex nuances or shades of grey in issues. While they are perfectionists with exceptional work ethics, INFJs report that remembering concrete details shared verbally is not a natural gift.  As a result, they tend to rely heavily on copious note taking.

Inside the mind of all INFJs is a rich, well developed inner world that they tend to keep rather private. While they enjoy socializing and highly value relationships, an INFJ’s energy is quickly drained by highly active, social environments. Their best ideas come after they’ve had time to mull over the topic in their head for a while. This “percolating” process can take a couple of days, is not always conscious, and usually leads to a solution that just “pops” into their head.

Highly emotionally intelligent, INFJs love to inspire others, help them gain a new perspective, and reach their maximum potential in life. They tend to feel things very deeply and be sensitive in every sense of the word. With a particularly low tolerance for conflict, INFJs work to avoid unnecessary tension or confrontation, and are more likely than most types to take criticism personally. INFJs tend to spend a great deal of time preparing for and then reflecting on any negative interactions, and also tend to second- guess their decisions.

“Good enough” is not typically part of the vocabulary for the INFJ. Blessed with tremendous focuswill power, and perseverance, INFJs constantly push themselves to reach any goal they have set out to achieve. Striving to avoid “winging it” or surprises, INFJs find lack of closure and future “unknowns” to be more anxiety-producing than most types. As a result, they prefer to plan way ahead, and over-prepare whenever possible. Not natural multi-taskers, INFJs tend to do best when focused exclusively on one conversation or task at a time.

Private and reserved at first, INFJs are perhaps the type that is the most difficult to judge by a first impression. Only as part of their inner circle do you really get to know the warmth, passion, insight, empathy and witty humor of an INFJ. While they can sometimes come across on the serious (and even a bit unapproachable) side at first, the more time you spend with them, the more you grow to appreciate the depth of their wisdom and insights about both people.

INFJs tend to be avid fiction readers, as this pursuit provides INFJs with much needed recharge time. They likely see themselves in many of the main characters, who are often INFJs, as fiction novel authors are commonly INFJs. To the rarest type (approximately 2% of the population), always on a quest to better understand themselves,  this is both appealing and validating!

1. Be highly ethical with exceptional integrity
2. Virtually never compromise their personal values
3. Treat each individual differently based on their needs/personality
4. Be too hard on themselves; perfectionistic
5. Seek spiritual fulfillment
6. Feel anxiety and worry about future “unknowns”
7. Find it difficult to stay focused on the present moment
8. Aim to know themselves as deeply and thoroughly as possible
9. Leave an organization based on lack of shared values
10. Take criticism to heart

Ambush Averted

Bro finally gave up on calling, and texted me. He was trying to talk about plans for him, Mrs. Bro, the urchins, Gram, and K (already local, but he would pick her up and drive her here) to see my film at Gen Con.

With less than two weeks notice?!

I had already told them (or just mom?) that Gen Con wasn't the best way for anyone to see it because it's downtown in a massive convention, it's an expensive event, it's difficult to get to, and hotel rooms are going to be charging event prices.

I guess they were thinking of surprising me? I don't know, but all it did was irk me. Bro talked about maybe having WS watch the kids so Mrs. Bro could see the film at Con (no go, WS has a bad back - no good for babysitting a two-year-old). Bro would have to sign interpret as the movie went. He asked if I had my own copy, and I told him I had the low resolution version Othello sent me for writing captions. He suggested brining his projector and having a movie night at my apartment and maybe going to Fogo de Chao with the money saved - from them not going to Gen Con even though they would come on Gen Con weekend?!

People? In my apartment? Houston, we have a problem.

Five adults plus two toddlers simply don't fit in my current living space. Also, I am uncomfortable in the extreme with having people in my apartment. I wouldn't normally mind family so much, except for everything else that's been going on between us.

The biggest kicker is that before I changed to wound care nursing schedule, that was my weekend to work. I requested Friday and Saturday off, and I would have worked Sunday.

Gen Con is Thursday through Sunday, and I had planned on spending all day Friday and Saturday (and maybe Thursday if I could) because I have a motherflipping FREE pass to the ENTIRE Con because of my film involvement.

So family visiting would mean either ignoring my family (who would be coming from two other states, neither of them adjacent to mine) or losing out on my event pass.

I don't want them coming. It's a stupid idea, and I don't really want to see any of them right now except for my gram, who I haven't seen for a year because THEY HAD CHRISTMAS WITHOUT ME. So I bit the bullet.

Well. That only took six months.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

And God said, "Let there be Benadryl"

I got myself a FitBit Charge HR a few days ago. It's a fancy activity tracker. I've still mostly been a potato, but it's a pretty cool device. I'm fascinated by the sleep tracking feature.

I've had some days off, so I've mostly let Xander be my alarm clock, but I took Benadryl Friday and Saturday nights to try to sleep earlier, as work shifts start at 7 am. 

The blue lines are restless/awake periods. It's not good at telling periods when I've woken up, but it's fascinating to look at sleep length and quality. I wonder how my stats will change as I go through my cycle, which has a dramatic effect on my sleep due to the night sweats and such.

I'm so out of shape that a 6 minute (well, 6:40) run left my heart rate elevated for the rest of the day. The HR readings during the run were a little sketchy as I was sweaty and the band kept slipping on my arm. I'll work on technique as I go.

It's not a perfect device, but I'd say it's already worth the cost to have the info it's collecting. I can't wait to see my resting heart rate (and my post workout HR recovery time!) drop as I get stronger.

Just need to do the "get stronger" part. 

Friday, July 17, 2015


I have not been so hot this week.

I missed a follow-up appointment for the needlestick yesterday. Kept noticing that I'd added it to my phone's "To Do" list but not getting so far as putting it on a calendar so I'd remember it. "Did you tell your employerrrr?" the receptionist asked me tartly. No, I have not spoken to my employer since Sunday night. At some point I have to work up a complaint e-mail to the CEO, and that's going to be even more draining. The clinic couldn't fit me in around my work schedule til next Friday. It doesn't matter that it got delayed; it's only going to be more bloodwork.

In Chicago - I actually felt kind of pretty.
That was three weeks ago, and I can't remember what it felt like.

I have been ignoring calls from Bro and texts from Mrs. Bro. They want to FaceTime so I can see the kids, and I can't handle it. How the hell do you say "I can't stand the idea of seeing myself moving on a computer screen" with the intensity that keeps me from communicating with family? Also my ASL is shit, so there's the guilt that comes with not being able to sign for Mrs. Bro, then the following anger that she doesn't exactly meet me halfway by being willing to text or e-mail.

Bro was supposed to call me after an incident in June where a panhandler at a gas station threatened to kill me. I couldn't find a post about it here; maybe I only wrote about it on Tumblr. I picked up pepper spray that night. Bro wants me to get a concealed carry permit. I told him I didn't want to end up on the news, I just want a way to keep the motherfucker away when I run into another one like that. He never called. We did, however, have a group text conversation (Bro, Mrs. Bro, mom, and me) where I sent a pic of a toy I'd just bought for their toddler that was a modern version of one both Bro & I had as a kid. Mrs. Bro replied that mom had already gotten them one for Christmas, and the kid didn't play with it anyway.

Fucking Christmas. Where they all planned a gathering without me. Where no one took any ownership of it except my mother. I never expected resolution with K; if I learned anything in the years as roommates, it's that his motto is "death first" before admitting that he did anything wrong. But I expected more of Bro. Nothing.

Mrs. Bro keeps saying how they miss their Auntie Tem and it would be great if I moved down to be near them. A few years ago I was more keen on the idea of spending some time near them when the little squirts are small, but Bro would never have uprooted his life to be near me, and they might move again when the whim suits Bro and his ever-evolving career plans. The accidental message is that I have nothing worth staying here for, and nothing worth going anywhere else for. I can't stand it.

I have theater (for one more semester, at any rate) and I have Charlie. Before last Friday I was feeling pretty good about my job, too. It's not much, but it's something.

So I ignore the FaceTimes and the calls. And I hope that the message Mrs. Bro just posted to FB doesn't mean they're pregnant for the THIRD time in just over two years.

At least I did a few semi-functional things today. Got my car back to the mechanic for a click when the wheel turns left (I just spent $2,900 on repairs, I am NOT messing around with new noises) (it's a minor thing that's under warrantee so can fix at my leisure), called the clinic to reschedule appointment, and, if I an make it another 30 minutes without running out of steam altogether, I'll be paying my August rent and giving Officially Official Notice that I won't be renewing my lease come September 1. 

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Quit Needling Me

I am too tired to fully explain it again, but the bottom line is my hospital totally jacked up handling the situation and I will be having words with management


I did start HIV prophylactic meds (which are apt to make you violently ill, so I guess we'll see how tonight and tomorrow go as they work their way through my system)  and someone did finally get the patient to consent to HIV testing.

He is negative, so I don't have to do a month of prophylactic hell.

I have called in sick tomorrow because I am just so fucking angry about the whole thing I can't see straight.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

On Whiteness and America (In Which Tempest Tries To Not Be An Ignorant Asshole)

*I am exhausted in many ways so this is a little helter-skelter. See previous post for more well-composed thoughts. Alas that I didn't get screenshots of all my 'read more's before unfriending Lumberjack.*

Racism: Holding negative beliefs or acting with prejudice because of those beliefs about a person or group of people solely because of their race.

Systemic racism: A socioeconomic environment that puts minorities at a disadvantage. An underlying culture with racism so pervasive and subtle that we don't see it and don't think to question it if it doesn't damage us. Being racist often without realizing you're being racist.

Privilege: having things easier than another person or group of people through no merit of your own. (please, please check out the link, a brilliant and concise depiction of the concept of privilege)

I didn't consult Merriam-Webster, I'm just trying to communicate the basics of these terms as I use and understand them. I never use the term reverse racism because I don't believe racism deserves a different term based on who is being racist toward whom. I do, however, recognize that racism from people of color that occurs as a result of being mistreated has nearly 0 power to damage white people.

There has been a run of very public black deaths at the hands of police over the last few years. These deaths have been mishandled, in some cases cops who are clearly murderers walking away unscathed. There has been a combined increased media coverage and awareness of these events plus social media platforms ensuring that people can learn more even if mainstream news outlets aren't reporting fairly.

Some of these deaths are controversial. Many are not.

Here is Kazehana's personal description of growing up black in America.

She talked about times when she was and is singled out because of race. She has been publicly degraded by cops, she has had neighbors die at their hands. The replies to her words are, to my mind, absurd. Have a paraphrase: (feel free to read the original, as I'm sure people will feel I'm mischaracterizing them with my comment summaries)

Comment one: That's nice, but personal responsibility.
Comment two: Violence against white people isn't the answer. Move on. Don't kill people. ALL lives matter. Parent properly. White people struggle, too! Race game, woe is me game. Race baiting creates division.
Comment three: I never said X, you assumed X [no one had accused person of X]. Black process file. Personal responsibility! Chip on your shoulder.
Comment four: You assumed. You decided. You called me racist [no one had]. Don't wallow. "What would be your solution to the "inaction of an indifferent majority"? I mean other than accusations? You could have had a supporter in me, but you just thoughtlessly lumped me in as the enemy. " [LITERALLY SAID "I WOULD HAVE BEEN AN ALLY BUT I DON'T LIKE THE WAY YOU PRESENT YOURSELF."] Other people struggle. Personal responsibility, not revenge. When black people do bad things, white people are going to talk about it. Stop putting words in my mouth.
Comment five: I've been told that I'm racist because I don't like Obama's politics. Admit you have a chip on your shoulder. "I wasn't supposed to dialogue. I was supposed to sit down shut up and listen to what I was told. I apologize."
Comment six: I played with a black kid! The no-good black people make the rest of them look bad, and I can say that because a black person said it. Change comes from both sides of the fence.
Comment seven (directed toward me): "So it is okay for one person to state their opinion, but not for another to express their dissenting opinion. And THAT is why nothing in race relations will never be settled. Fear not Tempest, I don't go where different opinions are unwelcome. But if you only want your side told, if you want to pontificate and not have dialogue, then I guess you already have the world you'll get."
Comment eight: *link to an article where a BLACK person committed a CRIME* "This is where my point about personal responsibility comes in, and where the idea of cultural trauma goes out the window IMHO." Because PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY!
Comment nine: You didn't read what I said. PEERRRSSOOONAAAAL RESPONSIBIIILLLITTTYYYYY! You think I'm pseudo-racist and don't want me to speak. You didn't read what I said, you just decided what I'm saying.
Comment ten: You accused me of things. You didn't read what I've said, Kazehana just doesn't want to listen to anybody. You didn't try to understand me. Tempest and Kazehana are bent on telling people how wrong and evil they are. Tempest wants to solve racism by white capitulation [OMFG] instead of cultural education. [to me] "Have a nice life."
Comment ten [to me]: You're not listening to me. You haven't given this a moment's thought. You're intent on the attack. Tempest and Kazehana are attacking me personally, so I am the victim here. I'm "unwilling to accept that an admittedly flawed society is the ONLY reason for the kind of life most minorities, whether black, women, or martians, suffer;" The fact that people continue to disagree with me means they are twisting my words into something they're not WAAAH.

I'm touched that the commenters are so concerned with poor white people, purple people, and Martians; however, that is not the topic at hand. The topic is being minority - most notably black - in a racist United States.

The underlying claim of the comments was that respectable people will be respected. This is bullshit.

As I shared in the link to Lumberjack, antiblack prejudice starts against black CHILDREN. They are perceived as older and less innocent than their white peers. Black people are shot and killed at disproportionate levels in no way sufficiently explained by differences in crime rates.

The DOJ investigation into Ferguson police after Michael Brown's death revealed a violently and pervasively racist police force. Black people were more likely to be pulled over, LESS likely to have committed an actual crime, and MORE likely to be charged with one. Ferguson does not exist in isolation.

People with black sounding names are less likely to be called for a job interview. Black people with criminal backgrounds are less likely to get a job than a white person with the same conviction. But remember how black people are disproportionately charged? A white kid has weed and he's just experimenting. A black kid has weed and he's a user, a dealer, a criminal, a thug. He's arrested, charged, convicted. He can't get a job so he can't afford an education so he lives in poverty and is more likely to resort to further crime. BUT PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY!

A white person is not expected to bear the responsibility for all the crimes of white people the way we just love to do for Middle Easterners (terrorists!) and black people (thugs!) or we'd be afraid of mass shootings every time we saw a white male in a school, theater, or workplace.

Show me a city where the well-to-do people of color have moved to cushy suburbs away from the impoverished inner city of white people, and I'll believe there's no institutionalized racism. People cry "Black lives matter!" because no one has ever told us that white ones don't.

People are not wallowing because they relay the personal stories of how they are hurt in the here and now by racism. They are not refusing to cooperate because they want white people to take responsibility for their half of the situation. They are not racist because they don't accept your excuses. You have no right to demand they be The Right Kind of Black to earn your respect.

The "personal responsibility" idea is not a new or clever idea. It's a copout.

*crawls back under blanket and continues to brood about everything*