First Doctor

Supergirl (no spoilers)

How does Kara/Supergirl afford such a nice apartment? Cat often mentions that she pays Kara very little. I don't think Supergirl makes any money saving National City on a daily basis, so how is she paying for that apartment?
First Doctor

I'm not tall enough!

When I moved into my house, there was a small stepladder in the coat closet. It has two stairs, and it's suitable for getting stuff off high shelves (though I don't really need it; my cupboards aren't that high) or for turning off the smoke alarm when I burn my supper. It's not quite high enough for me to reach the bird feeder that I use to feed finches, so Monster fills that bird feeder because he's tall enough when he stands on it. I got frustrated by having to ask Monster to do things that I can't do because I'm not tall enough (and I'm not short; I'm about 170 cm tall) so I finally went and bought a taller stepladder, one with three stairs instead of two. I can now reach the bird feeder, and I can reach the motion-sensor lights outside my house.

I also happened to buy some Christmas lights that I wanted to string up along the gutters on the roof of the house. (The lights are made with gutter clips on them.) Then I realized that the exact part of the house I want to put them on doesn't have gutters! Oh well, I thought, I'd just have to put them somewhere else.

Then I discovered that even with the new ladder, I can't quite reach the gutters on that side of the house. I can reach the edges of the roof on the part of the house that doesn't have a gutter, but the part with the gutter is just a little bit too high. So now what do I do? I don't want to go out and buy yet another ladder just for the purpose of hanging Christmas lights once a year, but I don't want to waste the money I spent on the lights, either. I can ask Monster to hang them, but knowing him, he won't get around to doing it until next Christmas.

If I could figure out some way to hang them on the side of the house where I wanted to put them in the first place, I can actually reach that part, but with no gutter, there's nothing for the clips on the lights to clip on to. So what do I do?

Searching for something

Is there a way to search an LJ comm's entries to find something that you've posted? Several years ago I posted a recipe to what_a_crock, and now I want to make that recipe, and I don't know even what year it was that I posted it there, never mind what month or day. I had hoped it was on my computer somewhere, but it's not in my recipes folder.

Perks to being bullied? Are they serious?

A couple of days ago, a website called "Autism Daily News" posted an article about the supposed "Perks of being bullied" for autistic kids. It was written by an ABA therapist. I won't link to it, but the "perks" included such things as an opportunity for the school where the bullying took place to raise autism awareness and to implement anti-bullying programs, improved communication skills for the child who reported the bullying, improved teamwork for the child's parents in working together with the school to combat bullying, opportunity for the bullied child to make more friends(!) and improved resilience for the child as a result of being bullied.

I was bullied as a child and teen. I didn't make any more friends (probably fewer) as a result of the bullying. It didn't improve my communication skills, since nobody listened to me when I reported the bullying. I wasn't diagnosed autistic at the time, and the school didn't have nor implement any anti-bullying strategies (nobody had those in the 1970s.) The teamwork between my parents and the school didn't improve, since nobody listened to my parents, either. It also didn't make me any more resilient. All the bullying did was confirm my belief that I was different and that nobody liked kids who were different and make me reluctant to try anything new or go anywhere new because I was aware that no matter where I went, I would be bullied (this included summer camp and church activities outside of school.)

Many people have written articles in response to the post, and many more have reached out to the website that posted it. The only response to the protests about the article was for the website where it was posted to move it to a section for "opinion" articles.

Answer for question 4506.

Do you enjoy traveling by airplane? Why or why not? What's the longest uninterrupted flight you've been on, and what did you do to pass the time?
I flew for the first time in August. The flight was only an hour and a half and I read most of the time. I didn't hate it but I didn't exactly enjoy it. I'm terrified of heights but at the same time I was intensely curious about what I would see from the window of the plane. I alternated being terrified and avoiding the window and being curious and looking out of the window.
autumn hunting

Inky's vet visit

For about a month now, Inky has had a bump on her head. At first I thought she had been playing too roughly with Katniss Kitten, but it isn't red like a scab, and it doesn't hurt her if I touch it. When it was still there after I came back from my trip, and it got bigger, I decided it was time to take Inky to see Dr. Diponio. I put it off as long as I could, because I know that vet visits are traumatic for Inky, and Monster kept saying that if it wasn't painful it was harmless, but I wanted to be sure there was nothing seriously wrong with my mini-panther.

I made the appointment for Saturday afternoon because I was sure I'd need Monster's help in getting Inky into the carrier. The whole day turned into a comedy of errors due to the fact that both of us had other plans for Saturday in addition to the vet visit. I was going to a fundraising brunch for my local NDP candidate in the upcoming election, while Monster was going to Men's Health Day at the mall. Men's Health Day is the only time Monster ever gets any form of medical care other than seeing his optometrist. He gets his blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol and PSA tested.

About half an hour before I left to catch the bus to the brunch event, I checked my blood sugar and discovered it was a lot higher than I had expected, so I took a single unit of insulin to correct it. Then I finished watching Amazing Race Canada and walked down the road to catch the bus.

I soon discovered that there was nobody at the brunch that I knew, and the people who sat at my table chose to sit at the extreme opposite end of the table and ignore me. Unfortunately, my work schedule and my job's rules about not being seen in public supporting a political cause mean that I can't attend a lot of local NDP events, so I am not one of the insiders who the candidates know by name and who all know each other.

Before I headed for the brunch buffet I checked my blood sugar and found that it was even higher than it had been before I took the single unit earlier, so I was afraid that my Omnipod was malfunctioning. However, I hadn't brought any spare insulin with me, so I couldn't change my pod. I decided I'd go for the lowest-carbohydrate options on the buffet, only to find that there was nothing there that was low-carb except for some scrambled eggs. Even the ham was marinated in maple syrup. I finally chose some green salad, some scrambled eggs and some hashbrown potatoes. I then took a huge insulin bolus and tried to eat, but the high blood sugar meant that my tummy was not happy with me, and I coughed a lot (I cough when I am nauseated) due to that and also due to the dryness of the potatoes. In fact, the food was horrible. The eggs and potatoes were dry and the ham was tasteless. I lost what little appetite I had and didn't eat much.

I sat and listened to the speeches, and then it was time for me to leave. I didn't have time to stay for the women's election forum. I did speak to the candidate briefly. Unfortunately, he couldn't answer my questions about either prescription drug coverage or autism services, though he did ask me to come back after the election and tell him what I think he should know about autism, presuming he is reelected.

Unfortunately, because I stopped and talked to him I missed my bus by just a few minutes, and buses on that route don't run often. I waited for the next one, but that one was a different route and I went to the wrong bus stop, so I missed that one too. Seeing that the next bus after that, of either route, wasn't for another half hour, and knowing that I had to be back to take Inky to the vet, as well as to get a birthday card for Monster, I walked home with a stop at the shopping centre to get the birthday card. When I got home my blood sugar was back to normal, so I was relieved to not have to change my insulin pod.

Meanwhile Monster got held up because somebody decided to try to cross the road against the lights and got hit by a car, so the road to the mall (where the Men's Health Day was being held) was blocked off and traffic was diverted while the police investigated. He got back to my place just a few minutes after I did, and we both got there just 15 minutes before we had to leave again. But we did get Inky into the carrier and caught the bus to the vet. Inky cried most of the way there.

While we were at the vet, Inky growled at everybody. She growled at me. She growled at Monster. She growled at the vet tech. She growled at Dr. Diponio. However, she didn't try to scratch or bite anybody. The vet tech was scared of her. Several times Inky put her paws around my neck and asked me to hold her, and she did the same to Monster. Happily, this time she didn't pee all over the place. She pooped on the scale, though. She also "expressed" her anal glands on the vet and the vet tech.

The lump on Inky's head is not serious. Dr. Diponio isn't 100 percent certain, but she thinks it's a clogged hair follicle or sweat gland, so either folliculitis or a sebaceous cyst. The description of folliculitis that I read online sounds exactly like Inky's bump. It's too small for the vet to do a needle aspiration, so unless the bump gets bigger or starts to hurt, we won't do anything about it. If it does get bigger, Dr. Diponio will sedate Inky and remove the bump.

The weather was warm, and while we were waiting at the bus stop, Inky started to pant. I felt like a bad Meowmie for taking her on the bus and not calling a taxi because Inky was too hot. But we made it home and Inky suffered no permanent damage. The other cats were hissy at her for the rest of the day because she smelled like the vet.
Cute Neal

I need a hobby

I would normally say that geocaching is my hobby, but geocaching is dependent on the weather. I won't go out and hunt for caches if it's cold, wet, rainy, windy, etc. I also don't want to do it if I have my period and have cramps, and I don't do it in the dark. It's already getting dark a lot earlier than it was a few weeks ago, and when I start work there won't be enough daylight left at the end of the day for me to do any geocaching. Indeed, I will still be at work when it gets dark once the clocks change.

I want something to do in the winter time other than surf the net all day. I don't do any kind of handicrafts due to my lack of fine motor skills, so no sewing or knitting or needlework or crocheting or anything like that. I seem to have lost my ability to write fiction. I watch less and less TV these days. I subscribed to Netflix but the selection on Canadian Netflix kind of sucks compared to U.S. Netflix. Maybe if I found a good slashy TV show I might be able to start writing again. I've been meaning to catch up on the last couple of seasons of White Collar; maybe that will give me some ideas.
hamster and cat

Autism is not a mental illness, but you're not allowed to say that or it's ableist

I used to follow an "Asperger Syndrome Awareness" page on Facebook, but lately I've been getting more and more fed up with it. They posted a blurb from a parent who said that she wanted to "give hope" to other parents because her child is so bright and talented and going to a "normal" school and blah blah blah. I commented, "Is there some reason parents would not have hope?" Then there was a meme that showed people with weapons hunting something, and the caption was something about autism parents defending their children. I commented, "Wouldn't this be the case for most parents, not just parents of autistic kids?" I was told that I obviously don't understand. No, I don't understand why parents of non-autistic kids would defend their kids any differently from parents of autistic kids.

Then today there was a post promoting "Invisible illness and mental health awareness" that wants people to, on a certain day, paint little faces on their arms in different colours depending on what medical condition they have: fibromyalgia, anxiety, depression, autism, etc. I commented that autism is neither an illness nor a mental health issue. That got people accusing me of being in denial and hating people with mental illness, people saying that if it affects the brain it's a mental health issue, and people saying that people SUFFER with autism so that makes it an illness.

I didn't want to get into a place where I was making it sound like being autistic is superior to having a mental illness, nor did I want to denigrate people with mental illness, so I went to an autism group I belong to (the one I complained about in an earlier post) and asked advice on how to clarify the difference between autism and a mental health condition. I got told off for using the word "condition" and told that we shouldn't distinguish between autism and mental illness but rather be "proud" to stand alongside people with schizophrenia and bipolar, etc. The reason I went to that group was that I couldn't find the group I actually did want to post to, and also because that group is, at least, good at telling people how to NOT use ableist language. I didn't know that "condition" was considered ableist! I've been trying to say "autism spectrum condition" instead of "disorder" because this group objects to the word "disorder," only to find out that I can't say "condition" either.

Unfortunately, Peter, a member of the autism group I run in "real" (offline) life, got into trouble for saying that he thinks mental illness should be treated and cured, and that is also against the rules of the group. I have long thought that Peter should not be a member of that group because he has a tendency to talk (or type) without really listening, and in that group you have to really police your words very carefully lest you use one of their forbidden words like "condition."

Personally, I thought that people generally wanted mental illnesses to be treated and cured. I'd love it if my depression and anxiety could be cured, or at the very least treated without having to endure the side effects of the various medications I've tried. But I guess there are people who don't want that. I was unaware of this. I just thought that autism shouldn't be treated like a mental illness because mental illness treatment is generally very different from autism treatment. In France autism is treated as a mental illness and treatment generally consists of psychoanalyzing the parents (sort of like Bettleheim's "refrigerator mothers") and the kids.