Angelic Paranoia

Paranoidangel's Website

Still mostly admin

I still haven't got a lot done this year. There's still a lot of life admin and dancing admin going on.

I currently have new glasses which mean I can't see and my nose hurts (and my head). I am back in my old glasses because life is not supposed to be that hard. But that's still being sorted out. The hospital need to refer me to a different department. Which in reality means the doctor refers me, like it's a fresh referral, so I won't have any more hospital appointments this year. At least on that. I have a referral from last March that maybe I'll get this year? But it's also for a solution that I don't want, so I'm not in a rush for that one.

I'm still watching a lot of Mr Selfridge and not a lot else (I have a lot of other TV to catch up on when I've finished). Amusingly series 4 includes Sacha Dhawan playing a character who might be auditioning for the role of the Master.

I finally found a drama/romance within it that was interesting. It's the boss's son and a shopgirl. So you have this whole employer/employee thing going on and they're different classes and it could have been really interesting. Except then the narrative skips nine years to where they're happily married and she's not really in the story any more. But I wanted to see all the bits where they dealt with their class differences and employment-related problems.

And no one has written any fic about that. Or anything else. (Most of the fic for Mr Selfridge is about Agnes Towler and a man whose name is not Henri Leconte. It starts Henri Lec, but the tennis is on at the moment, so that's where my brain goes.) But people have noted that in real life it was even more interesting because his family never approved and he kept their relationship secret. They only got married when Mr Selfridge buggered off back to America during the war.

Although it's got me starting writing again, after a month off. It's quite freeing that no one other than me will have a clue who/what I'm writing about and probably no one will read it. So I can totally indulge myself with all the history.

Although I am also planning to sign up for [info]seasonsofdrabbles also to help me start writing a bit, and because their RSS feed has started working again.

This year...

I had high hopes of doing things this year, but what I've mostly been doing is admin. Some dancing admin and life admin.

Like when I had two hospital appointments at the same time one in person and one on the phone. The phone one says don't go to the hospital. That at least I got sorted out, but I also have one that was texted, then cancelled by text, then emailed that it was happening. It's also straight after another appointment. The hospital thought that was crazy, but the private healthcare people they've outsourced the admin to don't see the problem. The only thing I can be sure about is that the first appointment is happening. Although I don't know why because it's for a test that was done in the summer and we already established that's got nothing to do with anything...

I also remortgaged, so my interest rates have doubled. Which sounded terrible in the summer, but had I waited until autumn they'd have tripled. But the people I've moved to randomly decided for no reason that my mortgage amount was the amount I owed in the summer, not the amount I owed when it all actually transferred this month. I found this out because they emailed me to say they were giving me free money and had explained it all. If I use that 'free money' to pay off as much as I can over the fixed rate I have, then it won't affect how quickly I can pay off the mortgage. And with interest rates higher I will earn a few pence interest from it sitting in my savings account. But it's still been a lot of extra admin.

And then I broke my glasses. Turns out in the ten years since I last needed glasses the frames have gone up 50% and the lenses 100%. With their buy one get one free offer I got a new pair and a pair of prescription sunglasses for 'only' £850. Also my spare pair don't sit right on my nose. Adjusting the screws has improved it a bit, but it's hard to do because you can make quite a big difference without seeing the screw turn. The opticians refused to touch them in case they broke.

I also set off my knee at the beginning of the year (too much bending and straightening). And then because I was trying not to bend it, managed to do something to my right side which then made it hurt to breathe for a few days.

And I discovered for the second time in the year that I've been working there that anything you leave there can be disappeared at any time. Since I have to go in once a week I don't want to have to carry everything with me every time (apart from my laptop, which is itself big and heavy).

So that's been my year so far.

I've also watched a lot of Mr Selfridge (and not a lot else), trying to get it all in to one month of an ITVX subscription (because they've found the most annoying way of showing adverts). It's more about the drama and I'm watching for the history and it's getting worse by the series. But we're now just about into the era I'm particularly interested in, so I'm keeping going.

2022 books

In 2022 my book goal was to read more books than I acquired. Which would then get my to read pile down a bit. I read 9 more books than I acquired. Which is good and I achieved my goal. It just didn't get my to read pile down by much...

So my 2023 book goal is to read 12 books from my to read pile. That's a rate of one a month, so that should be a do-able goal. I either have to finish them or decide I don't want to finish them and move them to the get rid of pile. Any books I acquired before 2023 that I am partway through reading don't count.

What I am reading Wednesday

What I Just Finished Reading
Still Just a Geek by Wil Wheaton. I persevered with the footnotes, although they drove me slightly mad. And made it impossible to tell how far I was through the book. It was just so interesting though, to see all his thoughts 20 years ago through the lens of him now, having worked out that his feelings about acting were actually all wrapped up in the feelings for his parents.

What I'm Currently Reading
Terry Pratchett: A Life With Footnotes by Rob Wilkins. A Chanukah present - a rare full price book in hardback. I'm only three chapters in and I'm really enjoying it. Especially when it talks about the second hand bookshop PTerry went to as a child and I've been there! And also that he would sign anything even if it wasn't one of his books, which reminded me of the time at uni where a friend of mine got his maths textbook signed by PTerry (in fact he passed PTerry to get Ian Stewart to sign it, since he'd written it).

What I'm Reading Next
Maeve of the Chalet School by Helen Barber. It was the book I was going to read next, but Still Just a Geek took a while (just loading the footnote took so long I'd generally read the next couple of sentences by the time it popped up) and I wanted to read the Terry Pratchett biography.

What I am reading Wednesday

What I Just Finished Reading
The Wonder by Emma Donoghue. I wrote about this book last week, but it did have a satisfying ending and reason why the girl wasn't eating. Interestingly, it was written thinking about the 'fasting girls' in Ireland that were documented around that time

Quantum Leap: Random Measures by Ashley McConnell. The Quantum Leap Podcast is going to talk about this one next, so I re-read it. Also, I had a cold and could do with reading something that didn't require too much brain. It wasn't anything exciting really, although I had totally forgotten all of it, so it's just as well I re-read it, so I'll know what they're talking about when the podcast comes out.

Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton. I spent the whole of the book wondering why the TV series changed the name of her best friend and when I got to the end I found it was much less loosely based on her life than I thought it was, even down to not changing any names. Also the TV series finishes halfway through the book. I liked the book more - I was never quite sure I liked the TV series I just kept wanting to know what what happened to these characters.

What I'm Currently Reading
Still Just a Geek by Wil Wheaton. The library had the ebook of this, although I have pre-ordered the paperback (a year ago when using some book vouchers). I've only really read all the introductions and pre-amble, but I suspect the physical book might be easier to read. I already spent ages trying to read the footnote on a chapter heading because every time I pressed it it took me to the chapter listing.

What I'm Reading Next
Maeve of the Chalet School by Helen Barber. I was thinking that with this cold what I really wanted to read was a Chalet School that I hadn't read. And then one came through the door.

What I am reading Wednesday

A Kobo Black Friday special, where this year I bought three books (for 99pm each) and am actually reading them.

What I Just Finished Reading
No Ballet Shoes in Syria by Catherine Bruton. This sounded like it was going to be like a Sadlers Wells books, but set in the present day with a Syrian refugee. And it was! So I enjoyed it. And I found out at the end that the author had also enjoyed the Sadlers Wells books.

A Day Like Any Other by Isla Dewar. I don't know what made me think this was worth 99p. It was easy to read and kept me interested. But I can't decide if I liked it or not. I can't even describe what it's about.

What I'm Currently Reading
The Wonder by Emma Donoghue. This is a bit of strange book. It's set in Ireland in 1859 and is from the point of view of an English nurse who's been sent to watch over an 11 year old girl who purportedly hasn't eaten for 4 months. At first I really wasn't sure about it, but keep reading because I wanted to know the solution to the mystery. But two-thirds of the way in, when I thought I knew what was going on, then I really got interested.

A Dance with Dragons: Dreams and Dust by George RR Martin. This isn't a Kobo Black Friday book, it's from my to read pile. I'm not getting through it very fast, partly because it's hard going. And I'm questioning whether I want to read it at all, given that it's hard going and I don't know that I really care that much.

What I'm Reading Next
I came to this section and thought: I wonder what new ebooks the library might have. Turns out the answer is Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton. I saw the TV series and sort of liked it and it would be interesting to know how similar it is to the book.