MetaGoodness June 20, 2018 2:12 PM   Subscribe

Tell me something good. Something happy. Maybe it's a thing you did. Maybe it's a thing that was done for you. Share something good with me and the rest of us. I feel like we need some of that. There's been a lot of serious happening the last few days and I want to just hear something good, positive, and light. I like this place and all of you. Be kind to each other, love yourself. Tell me something good.
posted by Fizz to MetaFilter-Related at 2:12 PM (276 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite

My job is really awful, but I just got a pretty nice job offer at a bigger company and everyone I interviewed with was really pleasant so I’m pretty excited!
posted by SpaceWarp13 at 2:18 PM on June 20, 2018 [21 favorites]

Last night I learned of a comic strip that's been published for a few years -- Wallace the Brave -- that's nominated for two Eisner Awards and is supposed to be something along the lines of the second coming of 'Calvin and Hobbes'. I haven't gotten far into it but I'm pleased that it's all online.
posted by mr. digits at 2:21 PM on June 20, 2018 [13 favorites]

This is a silly little thing, but I discovered the Outshine coconut popsicles are really good on a hot day.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 2:22 PM on June 20, 2018 [15 favorites]

I just finished rereading The Lions of Al-Rassan by Guy Gavriel Kay and it's one of those novels that I re-read when I get into a serious funk. It lifts me up because it's a beautiful story about cultures colliding and one of the few books that moves me to tears because of its ending.

It hits me hard but in a good way and this is me saying that you should check it out if you're looking for a book that takes the history of the Iberian peninsula and throws in a bit of a fantasy element. It's a good book and I've never been let down by Guy Gavriel Kay.
posted by Fizz at 2:23 PM on June 20, 2018 [17 favorites]

A dear friend of mine found out she is in remission this morning. No signs of breast cancer after surgery a few months ago.

Lots of happy crying this morning.
posted by zarq at 2:23 PM on June 20, 2018 [51 favorites]

I'm bike commuting again.

Never should have stopped!

Also, Race Invaders is back!
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:24 PM on June 20, 2018 [17 favorites]

I went to NYC last week and blew more than $300 at Mood Fabrics and others.
posted by Melismata at 2:36 PM on June 20, 2018 [19 favorites]

Also the World Cup threads on Fanfare have been fun to read along with.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 2:38 PM on June 20, 2018 [7 favorites]

I posted a question last week about naming a new cat. We still haven't decided on a name yet but kitty is arriving in just an hour and I'm so excited!
posted by Neely O'Hara at 2:40 PM on June 20, 2018 [30 favorites]

I made some ice-"cream" (nondairy) right before the weather got hot. My daughter was really excited and told me that she thinks my homemade stuff is better than store-bought and has been asking to have some every day.
posted by Margalo Epps at 2:42 PM on June 20, 2018 [21 favorites]

My six month old got her first two teeth! I might have found a job closer to home thus cutting my commute from an hour to five minutes! My car might be mechanically salvagable! There’s a new season of Kimmy Schmidt which means more Titus! Janelle Monae is still in our world! Beyonce and Jay-Z dropped a new album! I live in my favorite city in the world! Tonight I’m making chicken katsu for dinner! My bed is comfy and my child looks like an irl angel when she’s asleep in it next to me! My union has given strike notice and every nurse in New Zealand who works for a public hospital is about to walk off the job for better pay and safe staffing! I have a pile of graphic novels waiting to be read! Every month I’m volunteering to make meals for our local homeless shelter! I’m playing The Swords of Ditto and it’s adorable af! Our Prime Minister has gone into labor and we’re all excitedly awaiting the arrival of First Baby!
posted by supercrayon at 2:43 PM on June 20, 2018 [32 favorites]

I have a 10 week old baby and he's super sweet and adorable as fuck and we're traveling around Europe with him for 2 months and it's a blast
posted by naju at 2:45 PM on June 20, 2018 [42 favorites]

I recently moved from a city to a more suburb-y kind of place and I do grouse sometimes about missing things in my old neighborhood, but this morning I saw a gorgeous northern flicker land in my front yard and watched him dick around in the grass for a bit, chow down on a grub, and then fly away in a wild burst of tawny black and gold stripes and right after that a fat green shield bug bapped me in the face so I retreated indoors, mildly pleased by all of this.
posted by missmobtown at 2:46 PM on June 20, 2018 [19 favorites]

I may have mentioned that we have a grandson. We're visiting him. He likes pears (best with sound up).
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 2:49 PM on June 20, 2018 [42 favorites]

The book City of Brass is seriously good and I am so happy to have a muslim-themed historical YA that is grounded in actual Islamic myth and history AND well written. The only flaw is that it's book one and the next two aren't released yet.

Also the movers are coming in like, 8 hours and our house is maybe 75% packed and I'm not panicking yet because the new house is also not actually finished in that we don't have electricity, lights, doors... But we're moving in anyway this weekend! We have to vacate our house by Sunday and I'm so stressed by the move (renovating the entire place in basically 3 weeks - my contractor is also trying to stay calm) that I have ascended beyond stress to a sort of, hmm, we shall camp on the floor and eat takeaway by the light of our phones!

This is my house, bought post-divorce and the first home the kids and I have had that will be from the ground up made to be ours. We've been talking about different ideas, and while we didn't get the indoor climbing wall, I managed to give each kid their own tiny room, a kitchen for us all to cook in and a big living room we can hang out in - a house that will start with happiness and pizza and brightly coloured walls hung with art and filled with plants, cats and friends. The past week, I have been either so stressed I start shaking or so happy, I start crying. Mostly happy!
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 3:04 PM on June 20, 2018 [38 favorites]

After over a year, Trader Joe's finally got their champagne vinaigrette back.

The Room Old Sins (chapter 4) is out on Android.

And The Peach Truck is coming to Michigan next month.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 3:10 PM on June 20, 2018 [11 favorites]

My apartment ceiling is currently dripping because our upstairs neighbors had a tub overflow. But nothing important got wet and they were extremely nice and apologetic when I went upstairs to see what was going on.

It is summer and tomatoes are delicious for the next few months, and local cucumbers are making the best infused water.

In other summer good news, I can go for evening walks and see fireflies, which always makes me feel like the world is pretty great.

My friend and her husband successfully flew 3 cats cross-country for their move from DC to Seattle, and everyone survived the ordeal!

The Cubs are currently 1st in the NL central.

I have not seen as many World Cup games as I might like, but the ones I've gotten to watch have been pretty great.
posted by the primroses were over at 3:13 PM on June 20, 2018 [10 favorites]

my mother bought/shipped me a lovely copy of Little Women when I mentioned that I'd never read it and always meant to. So she decided to gift it to me out of the blue. No relevant holidays or birthdays - just a little gift to me.
posted by acidnova at 3:19 PM on June 20, 2018 [18 favorites]

There's not a bug in my ear, which I can assure you is the single most wonderful feeling in the world.

My best friend just alerted me to the existence of a soon-to-be-released book about "lesbian necromancers explor[ing] a haunted gothic palace in space" and I actually teared up because for once I am absolutely, 100% the target demographic for something.
posted by a hat out of hell at 3:22 PM on June 20, 2018 [73 favorites]

The first date I mentioned on a Metatalktail Hour a month ago went really well. We closed down our initial bar and wanted to keep chatting; the only place open at that hour was the local punk bar, which is how we wound up outside a sparsely attended ska show at 11 pm on a Sunday. The second date was similarly great and involved a dog agility show, cocktails on the river, walking off said cocktails in the park, ordering Chinese delivery, and watching a Sean Connery heist movie. Fast forward to a few days ago and the shortest Define the Relationship talk I've ever had: "'So I'm not seeing anyone else....' 'I'm not seeing anyone else either.' 'Is it ok if I call you my boyfriend?' 'Only if I get to call you my girlfriend.'" I'm absolutely smitten and I haven't been in years and it's a weird and excellent feeling.
posted by bassooner at 3:29 PM on June 20, 2018 [73 favorites]

There's not a bug in my ear, which I can assure you is the single most wonderful feeling in the world.

Omfg it was a moth! A moth! A tiny moth? Was it still alive? Did they let you keep it? What were you doing moth?! Why were you in an ear?!? Was it satisfying in a gross way to get the moth removed? I am a nurse and I am like this about this situation. Go home moth you’re drunk.
posted by supercrayon at 3:35 PM on June 20, 2018 [17 favorites]

I found a box of Ghirardelli brownie mix in the pantry that I'd forgotten about! It's like surprise money but made of chocolate!
posted by Mouse Army at 3:37 PM on June 20, 2018 [30 favorites]

I have tickets to see New Order in August and Mr Kris10_b brought home wine and chocolate ice cream.
posted by Kris10_b at 3:41 PM on June 20, 2018 [10 favorites]

I was just looking at our summer calendar and we have fun stuff scheduled just about every weekend. This whole downsize so we can spend more time (and money) on experiences thing is working out fabulously.
posted by COD at 3:44 PM on June 20, 2018 [16 favorites]

I’m walking very well (stitches out on Friday) and my garden is doing great! I have many carrots in the ground- the zucchini is flowering along with the beans and I have more herbs than i know what to do with. I also have many pepper plants- fingers crossed for a warm SF September through October because that way I am getting a ton of peppers. Got a couple of hatch, a couple of red bells- one shishito and a chihuecle negro (sp?) (it’s a Mexican mole pepper!) August is going to be great!
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 3:49 PM on June 20, 2018 [13 favorites]

It was only a moderately-tiny moth, it was entirely too big for an ear, and I think it wandered on in Sunday night, when I was on an otherwise wonderful camping trip. It was just 100% horrible to get it removed tbqh, the moth had battered the inside of my ear pretty badly and it fluttered around a lot while the doctor was looking at it. It didn't even occur to me to ask to keep it until I was heading home, but it had broken little bits of its wings all over the place in my ear so it wouldn't have been very impressive. Poor little thing, it must have been just as awful for the moth as it was for me! I hope there is a moth afterlife, with lots of cool lights and tasty bugs and absolutely no ear canals.
posted by a hat out of hell at 4:04 PM on June 20, 2018 [38 favorites]

I made Maximum Chocolate ice cream a couple days ago.

What makes it Maximum Chocolate, you may ask? More cocoa powder than sugar by volume, which also means it's pudding-dense when cold, which makes me really glad we have a serious ice cream maker.
posted by Making You Bored For Science at 4:14 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

My 2 year old daughter is in love with the music of the cartoon Steven Universe, and we've played the soundtrack enough that she can kinda-sorta sing several songs from memory, with her adorable toddler pronunciation of consonants. If you haven't seen the show, it's lovely and fun and delightfully gay, and she claps every time two of the characters (Ruby and Sapphire) kiss and cuddle.

She has pulled down a coffee table book that is "a Smithsonian tribute to the American musical" and is leafing through the pages, kissing all the people in the pictures.


Had to take a break for a minute because she wanted to play a game where we pressed our foreheads together and closed our eyes and she said "night night papa" and then I said "night night Mabel" and we repeated that like 20 times.

Also, she just put on a pair of my sunglasses and shouted "LOOKING GOOD MABEL"

She is in a very fun mood right now.
posted by duffell at 4:24 PM on June 20, 2018 [52 favorites]

We're adopting a dog on Sunday! Still working on a name.

also I met someone and went out with them four times in a week and am deeply smitten and haven't said anything to my real world friends yet but will whisper it to you here
posted by Flannery Culp at 4:34 PM on June 20, 2018 [35 favorites]

We live in a tiny cabin on a lake, which is great. But, we only have one vehicle, and my husband works weird hours, so he's usually rolling in at about quarter to 8:00 at night, which means I am alone a lot.

I like rockhounding, and we are fortunate enough to live about 45 minutes from a local dig-and-sift place. We don't get out there much, errands to do on his days off, etc.

The other day, I was waffling between going there for the first time this year, and going grocery shopping, and decided, what the heck, let's go looking for rocks and gems. He was all for it, and we drove over hill and dale, and got there in good time. The place isn't quite open for the season yet, so it was a very narrow window of time before they sold their last bucket of mine tailings (aka rocks and sand from a local tourmaline mine).

We spent $15 on the first bucket, and then decided to buy another, and had a nice chat with the lady running the place that day. I did find a nice little green tourmaline on the first bucket, that's why we got another one, because you never know what's in there, right? Fill up the bucket, sift out the sand, rinse it off, dump it out and boom! You might find a gem.

I have lots and lots of rocks, and crystals, and mineral specimens, I have rocks from the sea shore, from all over the world, I have a lot. But I always love hunting for the gems. They're sparkly, very sparkly!

So I picked up something from the second bucket, and it was clearish, but not quite green, and I took it out from underneath the tent, and held it up to the light, and it was blue. Blue tourmaline. Which is decidedly rarer than any of the other colors. The little tip of the thing glowed in the sunlight. I forgot the nasty horsefly bite on the back of my neck. It's blue! I found a blue tourmaline!!!

It's not quite a gem, it's not worth something as someone's bangle on a necklace or ring, but it's pretty cool.

Here are some pics, of the stuff I found, the blue tourmaline is the top left, then next to that is a rock with some pink tourmaline growing in it, some minty green tourmalines, the big chunk on the left is black tourmaline with green growing around it like a shell, the lower pieces are lepidolite, which is a purplish form of lithium and mica together, and the rest are all just sort of opaque green tourmaline.

Getting away, no phones or computers, just digging around in the dirt, sorting through rocks, picking out which ones I like, then driving home in the afternoon, reaching the river, and knowing we're close to home, was very nice. Not a bad day out, for $30, and 2 baggies of rocks to prove it. I threw some pics of the river and view at the above link. There's nothing like Maine in the Spring (almost summer).
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 4:42 PM on June 20, 2018 [34 favorites]

I will tell you about a nice email exchange that made me feel really good. Apologies in advance for the length.

The college I work for had its graduation last week. I organize roughly half of it, which is a shit-ton of work, and I direct the ceremony from backstage. One of the things I am not involved in is coordinating the people who speak during the ceremony.

During the rehearsal, I chatted a little bit with our student speaker (who is a DACA student and was graduating that day with his teaching credential), just letting him know when to go to the podium and what to do when he was finished. I'd never met him before, didn't know a thing about him. He was soooo nervous. On top of that, his wife and the ten members of his extended family who would be attending didn't know he was the speaker -- it was going to be a surprise. And he was doing part of his speech in Spanish, because his grandmother was going to be in attendance and her English is limited.

So, neat story, but the kid was so incredibly jittery and anxious that I worried all day that he was going to bomb.

He very much did not bomb. He not only did not bomb, he brought down the house, 1,800 people in the audience. This was my 9th graduation at this job, and he was by far the best speaker we've ever had. I was so happy for him -- and inspired, too.

Like I said, I'd never met him before, and I will probably never see him again, but I wanted to let him know how great I thought his speech was. I totally dithered about it, but I finally decided that I would email him a note. "Oh, just do it," is what I told myself. "Even if it's a little socially awkward, it's a nice thing to do and he might appreciate it."

So I sent him a note, and I didn't hear back from him. And didn't hear back from him. And I'm thinking, "Oh god, why did I do that? He now thinks I'm some random crazy lady, or I was too effusive, or he thinks I was flirting" and on and on and on. (I've been having some anxiety issues, so, yeah.)

After about a week, I did finally hear back from him. His response made me glad that I'd sent the message, and it was a nice little reminder that sometimes all you have to do to make someone feel good is genuinely tell them a nice thing. Even if doing it requires you going a little out of your way (I would never have had any other reason to email him), making the effort can pay off -- for them and for you.

The note I sent him:
Subj: "You are the future of education, and that's pretty awesome" [which was a line from his speech]

Dear XX,

I’m the [Firstname] who shook your hand before the graduation rehearsal yesterday. I wanted to write to you to let you know how much your speech moved me. This was my ninth attempt at helping to organize a [school name] graduation celebration, and yours was by far the most inspiring speech that I’ve heard.

I love working for [school name] because of its dedication to inclusivity. I grew up in a very small, very conservative town in Texas (in the 70s and 80s, which dates me), and it was never a place that felt safe or welcoming to me. The open arms of [school name] have been a comfort, and I’m so happy to have found my place, and my people. (Many of whom you know.)

My journey through Texas schools, in an environment that didn’t feel welcoming, would have been so much easier if I had teachers like you: Teachers who care about and treasure their students as individuals – diverse individuals, not all of the same mold, each with different strengths and weaknesses, with all of those strengths and weaknesses being things worthy of respect.

I am so proud to be affiliated with [school name] because it produces educators like you. There is no doubt in my mind that you will make a huge, positive difference in countless students’ lives. I’m so grateful that you’re heading into our public schools to make a difference. (And I say this as a person without kids.)

My work brings me into contact much more with our school's faculty than with its students, but I wanted to let you know that students like you are why I do the work I do.

All the best to you on the next steps of your journey,
The response I ultimately received:
Dear FirstName,

Thank you so much for reaching out to me and telling me this. You have made my year! I am so grateful and appreciative that I was able to go through this program and learn things such as inclusivity and diversity, and be able to take that knowledge and teach the next generation of kids. I don't think I could have chosen a better program.

After reading this e-mail, it occurred to me that your story is very similar to mine because I also grew up in a small town here in California with no diversity and lacked a warm environment for all students. I want that to change, and that is partly why I chose to become an educator. Thank you so much sharing your story with me.

When you mentioned it's people like me why you work the way you do, it made me feel special, and I thank you for that. Truthfully, it's people like you that make [school name] run so smoothly and effectively, that it makes it such an appealing place to attend. THANK YOU for everything you do, because what you do is what attracts students like me to [school name] to begin with.

I will forever remember this e-mail and carry your words with me during my tough days of teaching. Thank you again for your kind words.
It was just, like, two people intentionally saying nice things to each other, and it revealed a silver lining in what has otherwise been a challenging few weeks. It was a feel-good feeling exactly when I needed one.
posted by mudpuppie at 4:46 PM on June 20, 2018 [81 favorites]

My surgery went well, my recovery's been going well, and people at work have been very supportive and helpful during the "no heavy lifting" part of my healing up. I was really anxious and afraid of this whole thing, but it's gone very smoothly indeed.
posted by theatro at 4:47 PM on June 20, 2018 [22 favorites]

My stepson is getting married this weekend.
posted by The Gooch at 5:11 PM on June 20, 2018 [17 favorites]

I just made a delicious blackberry mojito including mint from my garden and local-ish blackberries.
posted by pointystick at 5:12 PM on June 20, 2018 [17 favorites]

It stays light until well past 9 and I love that.

The grocery store is full of cherries, berries and peaches.

All of my tomato plants have lots of green fruit. Soon I'll be eating home-grown tomatoes.

My hubby is returning home from a two week business trip in a few days.

I helped a work friend, a fellow special-needs parent, with a problem and it's going to impact her little son in a big way and I feel really good about that.
posted by Kangaroo at 5:31 PM on June 20, 2018 [17 favorites]

Oooh I've got a bunch.

1. Today I was eating a plum. and my sister-in-law looks at me, smiles, and says, "I'm really glad you like plums." Mind you, we don't have an excess of plums in the house; in fact, we only have plums because I bought some, because I like them. Having no idea how else to respond, I said, "You're welcome?" and she burst out laughing, and I still don't know why it makes her so happy that I like plums but it was a beautiful exchange.

2. I started a DnD campaign last week and the primary achievement of my character was acquiring twenty-five (25) bottles of beer, because I rolled 20 on a stealth check when I went to investigate behind the bar, and when I asked my DM how many bottles of beer I could fit in my bag, she checked my inventory sheet and told me 30. I did initially take the 30 bottles of beer but later found some candles and so took 5 candles and replaced them with 5 bottles of beer. I have no idea what I'll do with all this beer but I'm sure it will be fantastic.

3. I made spaghetti last night. Crucial to this story is that I am 24 years old and really don't know how to cook. I can reliably fry an egg about 85% of the time and that's about it. But I've been trying to gain more cooking skills and I wanted to make dinner for the in-laws and spaghetti's not that hard, right? Reader, it was not that hard, but I have absolutely no concept of proportion whatsoever. I had no idea how much spaghetti would be a reasonable amount of spaghetti, and I was afraid of there not being enough, so I just put more in. I didn't break it up ahead of time so I didn't really see how it fit into the pot until it had all cooked down and, um, let's just say that there was a lot of spaghetti. I could barely stir it. There was so much fucking spaghetti y'all. However, that was the only thing I fucked up, and apparently I did the rest of it pretty damn well, because guess what, y'all. They ate all that damn spaghetti. Every last bite. My father in law had three bowls. Mission accomplished.

4. I recently had Ethiopian for the first time! I was apprehensive because I have an extremely sensitive stomach, and I did find even their mild meats too much for me in large quantities (small quantities were great though!), but oh my god. Injera? Injera is the most amazing creation. I'm the sort of person whose food likes/dislikes center 95% around texture more so than flavor, and injera is like a texture designed specifically for autistic people. I loved it. I'd never had anything like it. It was spongey! But also squishy! And sticky! And doughy! And not super sweet so it doesn't make me sick! Ahhh!! Anyway maybe the novelty will wear off but I'm still on the sensory high from that injera.
posted by brook horse at 5:37 PM on June 20, 2018 [37 favorites]

This past weekend was super awesome. My wife's birthday was on Saturday so we took the ferry to Provincetown for the day. Even my jaded, determined-to-hate-everything teenage son ended up having a great day. We rented bikes and biked through the biggest sand dunes I've ever seen and ate, like, a billion clams and mussels.

Sunday I made some pulled pork, smoking it on my grill for about ten hours or so, and it was amazing. I used apple wood. The bark was perfect, the smoke penetrated nicely, and it pulled apart like butter. I had some just now in some tacos and... wow.

The Red Sox just tied the game.
posted by bondcliff at 5:52 PM on June 20, 2018 [13 favorites]

Thank you, hurdy gurdy girl! Your post, In difficult times, lift up your voice and sing, brought Choir! Choir! Choir! into my life and last week I had the chance to attend a C!C!C! event. Singing Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" with 700 or so other people lifted my heart in a way that I sorely needed. I would not have had the chance to be part of it if not for you and MetaFilter.

I convinced a friend to go with me, and she was initially kind of meh about the song choice, but I kept looking at her during the big sing, and her grin just got wider and wider. My face had a huge grin too. Because it really was a joyous experience, being attuned to so many others in such a positive atmosphere. And then "Jet Plane"? Might have had tears as I sang along. So moving. I'm grateful to y'all for opening the way to this experience. Thanks!
posted by MonkeyToes at 6:00 PM on June 20, 2018 [19 favorites]

I saw a gorgeous northern flicker land in my front yard

I saw one today in my backyard! First of the season, so cool.

I've had extra weird energy lately so I decided to really whale away at the backyard which has gotten totally overgrown with bittersweet and blackberries. I had started last weekend and finished today. I mean it looks like the site of a very bad haircut but I'll take it, the trees aren't choking anymore.

Also *I* got a haircut and now I am not covered in a gross wet tangle of long hairs every time I get out of the shower. And I can even shower before bed!
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 6:01 PM on June 20, 2018 [15 favorites]

This Saturday my son is graduating 8th grade and then I'm the mom of a high schooler, and he wasn't even born when I joined under my first account here, so you've all answered questions and heard about him growing up!

He had his first graduation practice and his teacher said he did great, so fingers crossed he gets through the ceremony without trying to escape the stage from anxiety.

I'll come back and post a picture on Sunday.
posted by 80 Cats in a Dog Suit at 6:02 PM on June 20, 2018 [15 favorites]

I am loving ALL of these shares. It's good to know that there are happy things in life. I struggle to remember that about my own life, but's there.
posted by Fizz at 6:11 PM on June 20, 2018 [16 favorites]

My friend won tickets to Arroyo Seco music festival in Pasadena, and he can’t go, so he gave me the tickets! I head down there on Friday for a (hopefully) fun-filled, sun-filled weekend!
posted by greermahoney at 6:13 PM on June 20, 2018 [10 favorites]

I found this kitty video (youtube) and it has made my week
posted by kitten magic at 6:18 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

I've started taking the East River Ferry home from work. It's beautiful!
posted by maggiemaggie at 6:28 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

I've started taking the East River Ferry home from work. It's beautiful!

If you're open to it, share some photos of the view, I'd love to see that perspective. I'm glad you're finding some beauty in nature.
posted by Fizz at 6:50 PM on June 20, 2018 [7 favorites]

My younger sister works as a nanny for adorable six month old twin boys. We had lunch last week and I met them for the first time. One of the little guys has some medical issues that make his life tough and my sister told me that he typically has trouble with new people.

During our lunch, he started getting restless in his baby seat, so I decided to try holding him for a bit. And then, out of nowhere, he and I completely bonded. We were both wreathed in smiles for nearly an hour as we played peek-a-boo and I told him silly jokes. I've never made a legit baby friend before, but it looks like I've got one now!
posted by WaspEnterprises at 6:53 PM on June 20, 2018 [28 favorites]

Tonight's episode of Nature is about pets, which means it probably won't do what it does with wild animals and get me emotionally invested in some critter only to have it die at the 45 minute mark. That's nice. Also, it just showed me footage of two hamsters running next to each other in the same wheel until they both ended up going around the full loop with the momentum they had created, and I ended up laughing quite a bit after a crappy day at work. That was also nice!
posted by hippybear at 7:13 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

I went to a queer book club meeting tonight. We had a great discussion of Torn by Justin Lee and have made plans to meet up again in July. It was a fun group of people and I am so happy that I have made some new friends!
posted by janepanic at 7:16 PM on June 20, 2018 [12 favorites]

I have a job and it doesn't suck and it's positive and involves helping people and food and a lot of music and community and it's basically perfect for me. I also have now put together an amazing, tidy little mobile office.

Imagine, if you will, nerdy, goofy, excitable me sitting with a laptop, a portable file box, a cute little pen case that stands up on it's own, a clipboard and my headphones or portable speaker. Imagine me sitting at a picnic bench or dockside bench overlooking the water with a view of mountains and forests and islands. Right over the edge of the dock in the eelgrass and kelp bed there are occasional otters, seals and even sea-faring raccoons. In the sky - crows, ravens and bald eagles. Osprey, too.

Earlier I ran errands looking for a new power supply, found a suitable one, and then came home with another pair of really nice KLH bookshelf speakers for a few bucks each. On my errand I took the bus up hill, then idly went downhill after the thrift store towards lunch. At some point I was rolling through a field and a short bit of single track and public path and surrounded by flowers and I just started grinning like an idiot 'cause it's just that nice out.

Lunch was a nectarine, a piece of fried chicken and some berries and a giant pickle.

I just took about two hours of nap after a shower, and I'm feeling about as limber as a sun-baked cat.

Tomorrow is Make Music Day, a townwide (and national?) event. Through my job I'm curating/hosting a make electronic music day. I have something like 5-7 known confirmed presenters bringing everything from vinyl DJ rig to digital multitrack recording demos with a proper Focusrite sound interface. We'll have at least four synths and a drum machine. Someone's doing a digital DAW/synth demo and all kinds of stuff.

In organizing this apparently I've triggered a number of call outs for work. One business I know is missing fully half of their staff tomorrow because they're all going to be presenting/demoing electronic music at my thing. There would be another to add to the list if they weren't conflicting with a staff meeting.

And I'm about to get legally stoned out of my fookin' gourd on some kind of science fiction-looking weed vaporizer that I bought from the store my bosses husband works at and play with my synth.

To be perfectly clear about this, doing this is... a pretty wild, heady thing. I mean, weird bleepy techno noises are already pretty good when you're stoned out of your gourd, but it's even better when it's coming from your own fingertips and it's just this source of endlessly variable sound that's always different all the time.

A good synth can be so mind altering on it's own it's amazing they haven't tried making them illegal yet.

Ok, power supply is about ready.. now to find my headphones.

3... 2... 1... See ya! *jumps*
posted by loquacious at 7:41 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

This year I went from intermittent volunteering to managing a hockey team, sitting on a board, and helping to run our school's hot lunch program.
posted by furtive at 7:58 PM on June 20, 2018 [16 favorites]

There is this you-tube video. I've posted it to Metafilter before, and again just tonight.

I'm a new hire who was just utterly humiliated in front of another department by a guy who'd been on the job for two years, and has three years experience to my twenty five in this field, but I didn't know the ins and outs of the undocumented data network of a Fortune500 outfit three weeks into the gig. Stupid noob me.

Haha. Provisional hire, contract to perm, haha.

I cannot laugh at or take joy in anything right now.


It's a game I play with myself, and I keep losing, because I grin and hyuck even tho I know it's coming and I must steel myself. HONK.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:59 PM on June 20, 2018 [12 favorites]

I’m in a friend’s basement, doing some rough tracking to prep for recording an EP next month. Been a long time since I’ve done this sort of thing and it’s exciting to be mucking around like this again.

Typing this on my phone while they track drums and bass; gonna hit post here and then go rip up some post-post-Beach Boys riffs on my L6-S.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:10 PM on June 20, 2018 [13 favorites]

I've picked about a combined four pounds of tomatoes in my Los Angeles back yard in the past week. I also got about a pound of jalapeno and shishito peppers (grow shishito peppers, y'all, I've got four more new plants in the ground now) from overwintered 18+month-old plants, as well as a few eggplants from similarly-aged plants that have just now exploded again in the heat and are blooming like crazy. My okra seedlings have just new gotten some umph going, which means I've got garden-fresh okra and tomatoes in my future.

This is the closest thing to magic I've ever done.
posted by Lyn Never at 8:14 PM on June 20, 2018 [19 favorites]

OMG you people who don't nearly live in Canada, how DARE you be getting garden food already?!??!

That's really great!

I found out that Ball makes special screw-lid freezer jars and doing a jellyroll pan (lined with foil) of cut up veggies with olive oil and italian (or other) spices and then roasting that and freezing it is a great way to have veggies even out of veggie season.

Granted, this depends on your freezer space, too.
posted by hippybear at 8:18 PM on June 20, 2018 [8 favorites]

20 years ago today, I got married to the woman I plan on spending the rest of my life with.
posted by madajb at 8:18 PM on June 20, 2018 [31 favorites]

A few weeks ago we saw an adaptation of Macbeth called Mac Beth, which was great. Even better was the overture and music used during and after, which I loved as soon as I sat down. I wrote to the theater and asked about it, and this week they sent me the Spotify playlist the music director created.

It's full of woman-fronted powerpop, punk, rap and more. Includes Rodeo by Pssy Pwer, which fills me with glee.
posted by Gorgik at 8:26 PM on June 20, 2018 [11 favorites]

I just freaking love our kitty. His weird-ass vampire fangs. His insistence on being carried to the couch every morning. His yowling at dinnertime. I've said it before but I really think our family unit is a cat sandwich, with cat in the middle and myself and husband on either side doting on cat.
The fictional second cat we talk about bringing home "who will be white and named 'Shirobei' and smarter than certain current cats," we say, casting a sidelong glance at the black loaf on the couch, has recently started sounding less like a joke and more like a tentative plan. (Though we don't really care that much if it's white)
posted by sacchan at 8:42 PM on June 20, 2018 [21 favorites]

I’ve been levelling up my Sunday afternoon manicures recently, and it makes me happy every day to look at the prettiness.
posted by ellieBOA at 8:46 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

Because nobody needs earplugs until the ride starts; I brought extras and was able to help the rest of my team for our brief ride in a Chinook.
posted by Afghan Stan at 9:19 PM on June 20, 2018 [12 favorites]

my band just got offered an australian tour next march (2 - 3 weeks and the individual band members wouldn't have to front any money which is HUGE)

we will do it, we will do ok financially, right now we are negotiating whether we can make it so we do slightly better than ok financially.

i would have never gotten to do nearly any of the cool shit that i get to do if i weren't in this band. we're still not even close to famous or popular but it's farther than i'd ever thought i'd get to go with music, which is literally the only thing i love

(i like video games, and roller skating, and computer programming. but i LOVE music.)

the fact that i get to do the ONE THING that i LOVE and it's financially feasible to an extent is just so awesome. i don't know what i did to deserve this. it wasn't good enough, i still don't deserve it.
posted by capnsue at 9:26 PM on June 20, 2018 [21 favorites]

My four-year-old told me I’m the best girl in town and he wants to marry me... it just really warmed my heart because his behavior has been a little challenging since his baby sister was born.
posted by beandip at 9:41 PM on June 20, 2018 [21 favorites]

Also I had a baby and she’s three weeks old and doing great and just as snuggly as can be.
posted by beandip at 9:44 PM on June 20, 2018 [32 favorites]

I went to a dinner party that a group I volunteer with had for a visiting out-of-town researcher who is a big deal in our field, and I spent a lot of it feeling awkward and hopelessly behind on my knowledge of the topic. But my friend from the group just texted me to say he was so glad to see me tonight and the brownies I brought were the highlight of his day, and now I feel so much better about the whole thing.
posted by ActionPopulated at 9:47 PM on June 20, 2018 [13 favorites]

I finally completed the fence around my yard, so last night in the early evening, my little flock of chickens got to free range for the first time ever. They were so cute, rushing here and there, each trying to be the first to find all the tasty treats. My dogs watched over everyone protectively, and even the cat came to hang out and enjoy the evening with us. The sunset was gorgeous and I felt so peaceful and contented.
posted by WalkerWestridge at 9:55 PM on June 20, 2018 [21 favorites]

The kind people who responded to my recent post in AskMe suggested I wear some bold red lipstick to help boost my confidence. Yesterday I did, and I paired the red with a plain black dress and a lot of black mascara, just in case.

It was very good advice.
posted by Hermione Granger at 10:27 PM on June 20, 2018 [28 favorites]

Hrm, I'm back because my synth's sound pre-amp output board seems to be crashing or overheating, and it's a known issue with this model. This is the first time I've used it to drive speakers instead of headphones and this is annoying.

And, well, I got it for free and my dad picked it up for like 10 bucks bolted into some weird desk, so it was that and the price of shipping up here.

In better news the power supply I hacked together worked and I did manage to get the polarity right and not blow up my mini T-class amp. The not blowing things up part is really good because it's a 3 amp supply in the laptop brick switching style, which is awesome because this little amp finally has full power as it this model can take something like 9V 1A to 16ish at whatever, and 12V 3A DC from a high quality supply is about the sweet spot for my amp and speakers.

The new speakers I picked up work great, too, so I know own two pairs of very clean, loud and nearly indesctructible KLH outdoor/indoor bookshelf speakers that cost me a whopping $5 a pair.

So, get this, nearly studio grade bookshelf speakers and monitors, amp and power supply cost... 16 dollars?

When people talk about hi-fi audio on a budget, this is what we're talking about.

Next up is a better amp and one of them new-fangled 12V battery packs.

Why? Backpack portable sound system and DJ rig. With the right amp or pair of amps and those four speakers I could actually put about 200-240 watts of sound, the battery pack, a laptop and DJ controller and the battery pack into a backpack and be able to provide sound or DJ for up to 8 hours.

Minus the laptop and DJ controller, the speakers, amp and battery pack cost is going to end up being less than about $150-200 max and choosing a really good amp and battery.

Other cool work news is my new coworker and friend, who is an old friend of my really close "chosen family" friends who recently arrived in the area. I also vaguely know them from time spent in another city with our mutual friend over 15 years ago. We have a ton of shared parallel history and experience and values.

My mutual friend gave them my number without asking, which is super rare shenanigans for them, they texted me, it was a good moment to say hello and catch up for an hour. I was actually kind of anxious and thought it'd be weird because you know, fifteen ish years, but no, no it's been great.

They ended up joining me for dinner and my DJ gig, then fast forward a couple of weeks and they're now a valued and well-fitting coworker. We worked the booth for our workplace at pride and totally rocked it and had a ton of fun.

Well, damn. I haven't ever experienced this before and it's really cool. They're like an old friend I never knew I had. And I mean friend, like, bro/sis and a missing piece of my family.

I've been having trouble even articulating how great and synchronous this all is.
posted by loquacious at 10:46 PM on June 20, 2018 [11 favorites]

I've walked 30 minutes or longer 19 out of the last 21 days. The past few nights I haven't taken my dog because it's been hotter than the surface of the sun...and not having a dog with me has meant I've been able to approach a few huge dogs that I always see. (A 140lb St. Bernard/Boxer mixed named Balthazar and his pittie/boxer mix sister Luna, a super friendly black labradoodle, a gangly -not-quite-fully-grown black great dane, a huge brindle mastiff, and a delightful frenchie.) Tonight I realized that dogs and cats are a thing that rates 200% good right now because when I'm interacting with one or even just thinking about them that means by head is not tripping out on political or personal frustrations.

I watched Hannah Gadsby's special Nanette on Netflix last night and it blew my face off in a good way to see her anger and truth because a lot of it is very similar to my levels of shame, etc.,
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 10:59 PM on June 20, 2018 [15 favorites]

It is that morning.

Midsummer, or the summer solstice, dawned and this year I found myself with several other druids and pagans, partaking in a natural ritual on top of a hill as the sun rose. Last year I celebrated alone, but this year it was somewhat more sociable (though the unclothed nature of the ritual means strictly no cameras or photographs this time). Elsewhere across Albion others have been gathering since nightfall, in large numbers at Avebury and Stonehenge, smaller groups or individuals in many hundreds of outdoor locations with some historical significance.

As the surprisingly strong sun hit my somewhat crumpled 49 year old skin, I felt the recent building anger, rage, thoughts of vengeance and head-consuming frustrations with people living and deceased wash and fade away. Words were quietly spoken; a communal chant, louder; a horn filled with mead passed around, followed by some nice cake; silent prayer and acknowledgements made; suntan lotion applied to forehead and nose and nipple by a few. I left the hill much calmer, drained of cognitive toxins, peaceful and settled and hoping this is a more permanent state of mind, of soul, for a personally interesting year ahead.

I also left the hill with a large wheel of cheese. Us druids like our food.

A short nap after submitting this, then I need to head north - for the exact point of the solstice, at 11:07am - to be at the Neolithic burial mound in the wood I was at on the Beltane. There won't be bluebells this time, but it will still be good in a place where the current brushes close to the distant past. As with this morning, there will be reflection, acknowledgement of our ancestors, acknowledgement of the significance - but also the insignificance - of our individual place in the greater cycle of nature and the natural year.

Later, in the nearby inclusive church the selfie-loving local vicar, buzzing after a run of recent weddings, will lead evening prayers with, today, a distinctly natural world tone, underneath the carved Green Man figurine which has held a central place high above the congregation for the last five hundred years or so.

And also later today, in this settled frame of mind, I will instruct my solicitor to sell the house my parents owned and lived in and raised me in for the first twenty years of my life, as I resume the journey back northwards.

Nature is lovely this morning. Wherever you are on this solstice, I hope you encounter it at some point today. Peace to everyone, and this planet and world we inhabit.
posted by Wordshore at 11:07 PM on June 20, 2018 [34 favorites]

It’s summer in Seattle. Seattle’s pretty great all the time, but summer is when it becomes The Best Place To Live In The World. Sunshine and greenery and water everywhere and surrounded by views with snow capped mountains and the entire populace which spends most of the year under varying degrees of depression is now breathing a huge sigh of relief.

Today is my usual admin day where I catch up on reading and paperwork and I have been carefully preparing a plan which I finally executed today. I rode my bike into work and after my morning meetings I packed up my laptop and some paperwork and rode the 6 miles on the Burke-Gilman trail to Golden Gardens, stopping at the Other Coast Cafe for a massive sub sandwich (The Mantooth). I set up my folding chair and sun shelter and did my stupid paperwork sitting on a sandy beach overlooking Puget Sound and the Olympics. This is my plan for every Wednesday for the rest of the summer.

Those few of you who know me and care about what’s going on in my life know that I’ve been going through some tough shit. I got into medicine to Do Good, as did my wife, and these have been trying times. We mostly work in the safety net which had meant our lives depended on the state and federal government’s budgets. Then the affordable care act came around and suddenly all my homeless drug addicted marginalized transgendered and undocumented patients who can’t get care anywhere were suddenly enrolled in Big Insurance Co managed care plans. Having spent some time in private practice in the past, I sounded the alarm bells five years ago. “Big Insurance Co is going to fuck us for profit! Big Insurance Co is going to fuck us for profit!”

Well, last fall Big Insurance Co fucked us for profit. And our brand new leadership team, fresh out of MBA school, with not a single clinician among them, simply rolled over and said “oh fuck, we are getting fucked, we need our doctors to start generating a shit ton more revenue or Big Insurance Co is going to put us out of business!” We were all mandated to increase visits across th board by about 20%. No input from doctors was solicited and none was received by senior leadership. Predictably, many providers left, many went on FMLA due to stress, and medical errors for this uniquely vulnerable population have skyrocketed.

For a while, I though I should just quit because fuck these bean counters who have no idea what’s really involved in delivering quality health care. Then I realized, this has been my own personal mission that I’ve poured my heart and soul, and personal fortune into for at least 25 years and these MBAs who make double my salary who have been here for 2 years who are telling me to work harder practicing half assed medicine really need to go fuck themselves. I spent much of last fall meeting with academics and policy makers about what I should do and gradually came to the realization I needed to get a graduate degree in health systems management and beat these people at their on game. As it turns out, the University of Washington has one of the best grad programs for this in the country. I applied last spring and just found out I’d been accepted for the fall.

This week I had the meeting where I told my employer what was happening. I’d been planning this for weeks because I’m so filled with white hot rage about my patients and coworkers that have been harmed by the fucked system we put up with but I knew I needed to be diplomatic and gracious if I was serious about creating something positive with my life and somehow I was able to pull it off.

The tuition and lost income while I go back to school is a substantial financial investment and I still haven’t paid off my Med school loans and it’s been stressing me out. We pulled our kids out of private school to attend the local public school next year in order to help make this work. 5 years ago when we looked close at our neighborhood school, it was a total shit show and that’s how we ended up at private hippie-shit school. But in ththe last five years the school has really got their shit together and both Bartfast Boys spent the day visiting in classes this week and they loved it. On top of this, my wife found out someone above her at Prestigious House of God teaching hospital is retiring and she is very likely to get a promotion and a pay raise.

So this week, it feels like th universe is aligning to make this plan come together,

And then another interesting side note — my nurse’s response to all the fuckitude going on in the safety net was to contact a union representative and organize. Over th last six months we’ve been meeting, organizing, and lobbying and as of this week it looks like we have enough support to pull this thing off.

It takes a lot of work and sacrifice to smash the system, but it can be done, people. Don’t give up! Fuck capitalism, fuck privilege, and fight the power wherever you can!
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:10 PM on June 20, 2018 [67 favorites]

The pea and strawberry plants in my garden are churning out fruits and vegetables at a great and alarming rate. A friend and I are going to have a fancy ceviche party and are sending each other aspirational recipes. I made lavender/honey/nectarine ice cream and a friend came over with a bunch of peaches to eat with it. The familiar-looking weed in my backyard has turned out to be purple foxglove. I'm doing really well at handling a complicated and stressful month at work and my kiddo is having a hilarious and delightful phase.
posted by centrifugal at 11:21 PM on June 20, 2018 [14 favorites]

I ate a belated zong zi for duan wu jie, and I saw a very good dog today! It was a very large black poodle mix, sufficiently wide (so many doodles are too narrow), with adorably placed white markings. My coworker also brought in his corgi.
posted by batter_my_heart at 11:21 PM on June 20, 2018 [9 favorites]

Oh and I finally have a hair appointment for tomorrow. My hair is starting to need its own area code, so I am glad that I am booked for a shearing. (meaning I will ask them to take off a perfectly conservative amount and thin it out, and it will be a small pet on the floor)
posted by batter_my_heart at 11:23 PM on June 20, 2018 [10 favorites]

I asked my manager if I could eventually become the tech lead for my team. He was amenable.

Also he's going to give me concrete goals to get there.

I can do this.
posted by bendy at 11:29 PM on June 20, 2018 [27 favorites]

It’s always a delight to hear from you wordshore- I hope your solstice cheese is tasty!
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 11:50 PM on June 20, 2018 [9 favorites]

First holiday in four years is coming up tomorrow and I could not be more excited! Even more excitingly, we have actually left ourselves enough time to pack without having to cram everything into a bag five minutes before we leave...

Making this even better is that its my kid's third birthday in a few days and yesterday he was talking about how his friend's scooter is brilliant and he wishes he had one- and there is one in the back of our car just waiting to be wrapped! My partner even had to whisper 'Be cool...' to me because I was in danger of giving the game away!
posted by threetwentytwo at 12:09 AM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

I was waiting at the airport for an international flight, and someone across from me didn't have a charging cable for his noise canceling headphones. He was talking to his wife about buying a replacement, but I loaned him the use of mine instead.
posted by spindrifter at 12:21 AM on June 21, 2018 [14 favorites]

I'm a severe, chronic insomniac, but over the past week I've been having the best, most restful sleep of my life. Like, twelve hours some bights. And incredible, vivid dreams, the kind where it's disappointing to wake up. Good dreams, not nightmares. I usually don't sleep deeply enough to have dreams I can remember in the morning.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:33 AM on June 21, 2018 [22 favorites]

We will be moving into our new bedroom soon. It's next to the new bathroom that we built from scratch (everything except for the outside wall) and that still feels festive and luxurious to me every day. The new bedroom will be larger than the current one, and is on the cooler side of the house; it will have a sink, and we're getting some good, designish wardrobe closets, second hand from a friend. We will install carpet tiles (some samples should arrive in the mail today), and a lovely ceiling lamp from the 1960s. It will probably be the best bedroom ever.

Furthermore, the bursitis I had in my hip recently is almost gone, and all that it took was a visit to my doctor and some ibuprofen taken at regular intervals. It was the first time I met my doctor (after she replaced my old doctor who retired) and she is really nice!

One of our cats, Pepper, got hit by a van in March and lost half of his tail. By now, he has forgotten all about that and his fur is coming back in nicely. His shorter tail looks really cute on him, it reminds me of the antenna on the cell phone I had in the 90s. He used to be quite chubby but for some reason he shed the extra weight after his surgery and he is now in excellent shape, and as affectionate and clumsy as ever.

And the bag thread inspired me to get this laptop bag. In purple of course.
posted by Too-Ticky at 12:38 AM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

I have found a book that lists all the important dates and facts in the history of my town's university: who was employed when and with what title, as well as the titles and dates of all the licentiate and PhD theses. The licentiate part is especially amazing, because PhD theses are, at least where I live, published as "normal" books and can be found in library catalogues, but licentiate theses are not. I cannot possibly express how good this book is – I edit Wikipedia a lot, so lots of obscure dead people will have their articles fleshed out with their academic careers!
posted by Vesihiisi at 1:38 AM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

On Sunday, I took part in the annual London to Brighton charity cycle ride for the first time. It's 54 miles - the most I've ever ridden in one day by a long shot (previous best: 12 miles). I did it without too much difficulty, including riding up the notorious Ditchling Beacon climb which, being very near the end of the ride, defeats a lot of the participants (it's 1 mile, averaging 10% gradient). Cycling up the whole thing going past all the people walking their bikes was Extremely Satisfying.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 1:42 AM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

Next week I'm auditioning for a Shakespeare play for the first time in something like a year and a half.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 2:08 AM on June 21, 2018 [14 favorites]

The young hawk in my neighborhood has been taking parent-supervised flights over the last couple of days. First time I’ve witnessed raptor fledging. It’s beautiful, and that cry so haunting.
posted by Nancy_LockIsLit_Palmer at 2:19 AM on June 21, 2018 [19 favorites]

I’m having a hard time in a foreign country and a mefite was kind enough to come sit with me and bring me pudding and some apple baby food. I don’t know if she wants to be publicly credited but it was so amazing to have a human make such an effort to be present. She let me vent my frustrations.

I am overwhelmed with gratitude.

I’m also very grateful for the NHS and for travel insurance. I’m being well cared for. Oh guys how did it get so dusty in this frequently cleaned room?

Also the sky is so blue out my window and perfect cotton ball clouds are floating by.
posted by bilabial at 2:30 AM on June 21, 2018 [32 favorites]

I am loving ALL of these shares. It's good to know that there are happy things in life. I struggle to remember that about my own life, but's there.

Fizz, something I really like about your regular updates is the way you talk about your family. I think your love for them really shines through, and it's something I really like reading (if you need a reminder about things that you like!)

For me:

1. I've been battling a chronic foot injury for nearly a year now, and had a big regression recently but squeaked out a 10km run tonight, and - fingers crossed - I'm feeling pretty good so far. I'd really love to get back to my old mileage, even if it's only on a treadmill.

2. My youngest is at her aunt's tonight, and we just got off a whatsapp call with her. She was talking to us, but transparently watching her own face in the video, so opening her mouth, sticking her tongue out and scrunching up her eyes, whilst pretending to care about anything we said. It was adorable.

3. My eldest (I love that photo so much, everything about it makes me happy) is such a ray of sunshine. She was bouncing home with me the other night, chattering away and being silly, and I remarked how happy she was. She replied, "You know what, Daddy? I am just full of hokey pokey tonight!" This comment was spurred by discussion of the hokey pokey dance the day before. I loved her creativity and accuracy.
posted by smoke at 3:33 AM on June 21, 2018 [27 favorites]

After a long convo and exchanges, I received the right size of a supremely sparkly multi-coloured zircon tennis bracelet and just looking at my wrist makes me smile.

I also planted ginger rhizomes two months ago and completely gave up on them working out when there was no sign of sprouting after six weeks, but this morning I looked under the overturned plant pots protecting that spot from being treated as a litter box, and I have three plants that are somehow over 10cm tall each despite not getting any sun and only whatever water seeped through from other plots. Life, huh?
posted by I claim sanctuary at 4:03 AM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

I just bought a guitar, and I'm going to wander in to town to collect it. A Fret-King Ventura in candy-apple red and with the mini-humbuckers. I hope that Google Images link works for you. Bonkers, yes. I chose the candy-apple red rather than the laguna blue because I already have a matching strap.

This is probably why I shouldn't take days off. I get all relaxed and in holiday mood and the next thing I know I have a Fret-King Ventura in candy-apple red.

(Fret-King is the personal marque of errant guitar genius Trevor Wilkinson. The company's been struggling a bit, I think, largely because it's called Fret-King though partly because of the design - they mostly look almost like traditional guitars, but very slightly wrong, which I love. And the headstock, of course. If he'd called the company Wilkinson guitars and made more traditional designs I think it would have been more successful, but I love the fact that he didn't. He's also responsible for designing the much more traditional and successful Vintage and even more bonkers, though niche, Italia guitars. It's a shame about Fret-King, as they're superb guitars and in terms of quality far outstrip the price, even new. I got this one ex-demo, and I think they're trying to dump the stock, so it was a bargain at less than half list price. I actually took the days off to do recording, but hopefully I can do that later on my new guitar, eh?)
posted by Grangousier at 4:51 AM on June 21, 2018 [11 favorites]

This is my last day in the office until July 11th. Hallelujah! Off to Wales for a family wedding tomorrow, seeing friends up country on Monday then 2 weeks in sunny northern Italy! 4 days of gluttony in Bologna then a week walking it off in the mountains. Cannot come soon enough. Please be crossing fingers against volcano eruptions, ATC & rail strikes, etc.
posted by biffa at 5:11 AM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

I have a full-time IT job that I sort of hate, but I also write music for TV on the side, mostly for music libraries. I've been feeling sort of down about it lately, since I don't have a lot of time to work on spec, and it's really tough to make inroads with the high-end libraries that actually pay for your copyright and will generate reliable royalties.

Out of the blue a few weeks ago, I got an email from a company I'd worked for in the past -- who are awesome to work for and whose catalog gets used plenty -- asking me for some more music. This is great, because it pays real money up-front (plus a tiny production budget to hire a drummer! who is a personal friend!) and will hopefully get used and generate at least some tiny royalties for years to come.

The downside of library work is that you sometimes don't know when your music has been used until you get a royalty check, which is delayed by three quarters. The upside is that sometimes you get a nice surprise. Last Friday was royalty day, where I learned that one of the tracks I'd written for this library has been airing as the theme music for a weekly show on a cable news channel. The money is good-not-great, but it's a huge, huge pressure relief on our budget at home, in particular because it seems like they're still using the music and I can hopefully expect a similar check for the next few quarters.

So yeah, nice check, and nice confidence boost that I know what the hell I'm doing (because usually it feels like I don't).
posted by uncleozzy at 5:14 AM on June 21, 2018 [19 favorites]

I just had a tiny cup of pineapple juice and it was so amazing I cried. Now I’m listening to the Mac Beth Spotify linked upthread. It’s great. My day has really improved in the last 20 minutes.
posted by bilabial at 5:27 AM on June 21, 2018 [18 favorites]

EndsOfInvention, I used to dread walking up Ditchling Beacon when I was younger on family walks with the dogs!
posted by ellieBOA at 5:38 AM on June 21, 2018 [4 favorites]

I've been slowly doing a few things that have been falling by the wayside - just starting one new improvement a week. Two weeks ago I got an appointment for an optometrist, last week I ordered new glasses and re signed up for a gym membership, this week I get the new glasses, went to the gym, and made a hair appointment.

My current pair of glasses are so scratched up that it's like looking through a visible smudge all the time, and I've been bummed about logistics and weather making it difficult for me to bike to work this year, so this feels pretty big to me.
posted by dinty_moore at 5:43 AM on June 21, 2018 [10 favorites]

Thanks for this, Fizz, and everyone who's posted. This week started with an earthquake and has kind of gone downhill from there, and it ain't Sunday yet, but...
My box of books that I bought and posted from NY arrived today, and I've already started tearing through them. Elizabeth Acevedo's The Poet X is fantastic, bone-deep satisfying. Reminds me a bit of Isabel Quintero's Gabi, A Girl in Pieces, if only in that they're both first-person novels about teenage Latina poets and that they both are wonderful reads.
Also I discovered the Frankfurt Radio Symphony channel on Youtube, with a lot of wonderful stuff. Ibert Flute Concerto, anyone?
posted by huimangm at 5:48 AM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

I’m going to be 19 weeks pregnant tomorrow and I’m finally getting comfortable telling my social circle. Those in the most inner circle have been there for our infertility struggles and know that we used a donor egg for this pregnancy. When I told each of them I was pregnant, all of them cried tears of joy at the news. I feel so lucky that we have such a loving supportive network and this baby is gonna be loved so so much by so so many people.

Also I think this thread is going to make me reach my favourites limit for the first time so thank you.
posted by like_neon at 5:53 AM on June 21, 2018 [18 favorites]

A Fret-King Ventura in candy-apple red and with the mini-humbuckers.

Jeezly Pete, that's a beautiful guitar. Congrats!

I mentioned this elsewhere on the ol' MeFi, but I recently had a really cool experience on Twitter, of all places, and I think it is OK to selflink here. This tweet about a proud father reading his daughter's thesis (in my own Master's subject, no less) inspired me to reply "I am a Dad, and I will read anyone’s thesis if they would like a Dad to be proud of them." Well, apparently it stuck a nerve, as it got hundreds of likes, and dozens of responses. I read an amazingly powerful article about burnout in ICU nurses (my wife has been a veterinary ICU nurse for 10+ years, so I know a little something about that), and I really felt like just a few kind words really helped some others. Still haven't gotten to read any theses, though!
posted by Rock Steady at 6:11 AM on June 21, 2018 [20 favorites]

My older kid was adopted through foster care - placed with us before she was a month old but not adopted until she was three and a half. When she was a toddler I never let myself imagine the future with her because I didn't know if I would be a part of it or not. Specifically, any thoughts of her at school were immediately and promptly squished down. Well, yesterday, she graduated from kindergarten, and I sat there watching her and cried because I get to be her mom forever. I sent pictures of the day to her birth mom, who responded that she's beautiful and looks so happy and we're doing a great job. I'm very, very lucky.
posted by SeedStitch at 6:19 AM on June 21, 2018 [38 favorites]

Last year, my mother-in-law died. One of the things I did afterwards was organize her financial paperwork, and that project snowballed into finally getting our own paperwork in order and filed.

That work has really started reaping benefits this week: we've applied for a mortgage, and responding to the documentation requests from the lender would have been an utter nightmare had our papers not been organized.
posted by metaquarry at 6:34 AM on June 21, 2018 [13 favorites]

I petted my sleepy cat and she made a quiet "prrp!" and stretched her toe beans. It was the most pure thing I've seen in my life.

Also, I finally got onto some medication for my anxiety and I'm slowly rediscovering what it is to be excited about things. I was riding in a car last night and for the first time in what feels like forever, I was happy and content.
posted by specialagentwebb at 6:37 AM on June 21, 2018 [31 favorites]

I just had my first annual review at my new(ish) job, and my boss told me he's very happy with my performance and that I'm exactly the kind of person he was hoping to hire. So there's that.

No raise, but you can't have everything. I get a small automatic one in January anyway.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 6:40 AM on June 21, 2018 [13 favorites]

I surprised my parents with Hamilton tickets for when they are touring in Boston in the fall!!!!!!!!!!

Of course, my mother repaid me by texting me to say "Sorry, I think we lost your cat" and then sending me this picture. Don't worry, though - Triceratops appears to have re-emerged.
posted by ChuraChura at 7:03 AM on June 21, 2018 [21 favorites]

It's the first day of summer! It's Pride week in Toronto! I'm going to have friends over for a little party on Friday. Yesterday I went on a special excursion to an Italian grocery store where I was able to find the cherry peppers I wanted, and tonight I'm going to stop by a butcher shop where a friend works to see what other treats I can find. I'm also planning to pick up some shishito peppers (which I just learned are the same things as the curry peppers I have always wondered about at the Korean grocery store) and try them for the first time.

Then, when Pride's done, it's just another week until I go camping for the long weekend with a bunch of friends. Woo!
posted by sevenyearlurk at 7:22 AM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

Thanks, for the super timely and much needed thread, Fizz.

mudpuppie that is such a great story - good for you on taking time to write him and it sounds like both of you will remember that for a lifetime. You have a lot to be proud of, not the least of which is yourself.

After losing 50% of our pet population in May, we have a new yellow lab pup and he is just pure adorable and made of love! We named him Graham. (I sort of suck at imgur, so if that's not viewable, lemme know. Here's more Graham in case you need it.

We had some nice thunderstorms last evening that skirted us. We didn't get the rain but we did get the nice cool outflow boundary air & opened the window for the 1st time in weeks.

The new sod in our backyard dogwalk area is happy, and the dog owning neighbors were all very cooperative about staying out of the yard for 2 weeks while it took hold. Tomorrow we all get to get back on it!

Today is my mom's birthday. She would've been 86. I remember her fantastic sense of humor and go get 'em, just be you approach to life everyday, but especially today. It's fitting that she gets the longest day of the year as hers!

Love all you guys.
posted by yoga at 7:25 AM on June 21, 2018 [15 favorites]

I'm off to England next week, where I will conference, meet up with a fellow Mefite, see the English branch of the family, and read three really terrible novels at the British Library. (One of which is four volumes long. There may be irate live-tweeting.)
posted by thomas j wise at 7:51 AM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

The beau brought home a flat of peaches the other day. I looked at him and asked why he thought the two of us needed an entire case of peaches. "They smell so good! Try them."

I love fruit, especially summer's best peach bounty, so I had one. It was delicious. He brought another flat home yesterday. We've already eaten half of it.
posted by PearlRose at 8:01 AM on June 21, 2018 [15 favorites]

That reminds me that I finally saw berry flowers yesterday, so berries aren't far behind. I must have eaten 20+ pounds of berries last summer.

Say what you will about the Himalaya and blackberries around the PNW being invasive non-natives, but being able to bike around and plan lunch around free food and sun-warm berries is just frickin' amazing. Sometimes I'll get a bit of brie or some gelato or sherbet and then add freshly picked berries. Or some yogurt and oats - add berries.

This year I'm adding Oregon grape, salal berries and thimble berries and know some good patches.
posted by loquacious at 8:12 AM on June 21, 2018 [7 favorites]

We are going on holiday to Norfolk (UK) tomorrow - yay! Also I am starting a very nice new freelance gig when I get back training youth workers on the delivery of creative activities for children and young people. Said freelance gig also pays quite nicely, so I can now actually afford to start writing the book I have been planning for some time.

Also, my one of my awesome PhD students passed her Viva this week with (very) Minor Corrections. Also, the Dear Old Dog is still here snoozing and snuggled up to me as I write this, despite a quite serious health scare this year, so I'll take all of the above, and feel grateful for time and health and opportunities and great students and family.
posted by Chairboy at 8:14 AM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

My 44 yard long custom woven glitch tapestry is on view in an exhibition in Dublin! The launch party is in 90 minutes! (If you're in Dublin - party admission is free if you RSVP)

I'm starting a new job for a tech organization that is (as far as I can tell) not even slightly evil.

I have three kinds of cheese in the fridge and peaches and avocados in the fruit bowl.
posted by moonmilk at 8:35 AM on June 21, 2018 [22 favorites]

That reminds me that I finally saw berry flowers yesterday

Yeah! The neighbor with whom we share a short chain-link fence has a raspberry bush right on the property line, and it produces a nearly-endless crop of raspberries all summer long. Last week we started noticing a few flowers starting to bloom, poking through and over the fence. In the height of summer we go out to water our garden and wind up eating half a pint of raspberries along the way. It's the best.
posted by uncleozzy at 8:35 AM on June 21, 2018 [4 favorites]

Ooh, that reminds me that I saw wild strawberries growing in the park in the shade of the giant burdocks. I wouldn't eat them because all the dogs pee on the giant burdocks. But still - wild strawberries next to a major road in NYC!

I have a grudge against burdocks because they make those nasty prickles that stick to my dog (and dogs love to pee on burdocks for some reason). Would it be wrong of me to go walk my dog with gardening shears and cut off the flowers before they can turn into prickles?
posted by moonmilk at 8:40 AM on June 21, 2018 [4 favorites]

Oh! We also have volunteer strawberries in our yard. No idea where they came from. I think we put in a strawberry plant two or three years ago that didn't do bupkis and was planted over with flowers, and suddenly, early this spring, we said, hey, are those strawberry leaves?

Sure as shit, it's taken over half the bed. No flowers yet, though.
posted by uncleozzy at 8:45 AM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

In the height of summer we go out to water our garden and wind up eating half a pint of raspberries along the way. It's the best.

I know, right? When I set up my little container garden experiment I did some berry cane weaving, mild pruning and maintenance to get them to run along the fence more for easier picking this year.

Yeah, they'll eventually tear down the fence but that's going to happen anyway. Old fence is held up by wishes (and strategic propping) anyway.
posted by loquacious at 9:04 AM on June 21, 2018 [4 favorites]

we have a new yellow lab pup and he is just pure adorable and made of love! We named him Graham.


@PearlRose If you end up with leftovers, homemade peach jam is the peach bomb and tastes like summer in January.

@moonmilk I spent my teen years picking burdocks out of Toby the Tabby. So glad my current cats are willing to stay indoors.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:06 AM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

I sort of suck at imgur, so if that's not viewable, lemme know. Here's more Graham in case you need it.

Graham is pigging gorgeous, but you're not wrong about imgur, you've left evidence of your giraffe kidnapping scam all over the next page.
posted by biffa at 9:17 AM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

I think I’m slowly coming out of the funk I’ve been at work for a while. The key was actually empowering myself to raise a little hell about my Spanish teacher provided by work. Everyone was complaining about the poor level of teaching but everyone was just sitting and hoping to change class in September. I decided I couldn’t take all the random moods and not actually learning anything until then and talked to my boss. He can often be hard work, but he stepped up and lobbied the training dept. as long as I committed to take the training seriously. So for the last month and a half, I’ve been in classes with a new teacher and my confidence in the language is coming back. Oh, and everyone else said thanks for raising hell on their behalf too.

Today I took my team here in Madrid out for lunch and invited one of the retirees from last October to come and join us. He told me that my Spanish had improved a lot since last time we saw each other in March. Big confidence boost and I can see my engagement with the team is improving too. Pequeñas victorias.
posted by arcticseal at 9:18 AM on June 21, 2018 [11 favorites]

Chairboy I am v jealous of you going to Norfolk because it is scene of one of my favourite holiday memories ever- floating downstream talking about how we'd love to see some kingfishers and then three swooping in front of us, one after the other. Magical.

In my own holiday news, I am fully packed. With like, 20 hours to spare. A new and unknown sensation, and not one I'm comfortable with.
posted by threetwentytwo at 9:22 AM on June 21, 2018 [7 favorites]

Pride was last weekend and I went with my partner and her other partner and I'm starting to tell people I'm poly and queer and things feel right.
posted by deezil at 9:37 AM on June 21, 2018 [10 favorites]

I forgot the most important thing! Yesterday I got to take a tour of the Jim Henson Muppet Workshop. I got a hug from Grover and met a 40 year old Oscar. I also got to see a drawer full of spare muppet eyes.
posted by moonmilk at 9:39 AM on June 21, 2018 [31 favorites]

I forgot the most important thing! Yesterday I got to take a tour of the Jim Henson Muppet Workshop. I got a hug from Grover and met a 40 year old Oscar. I also got to see a drawer full of spare muppet eyes.

By most important thing, you obviously mean the most important thing in the history of MetaFilter. I am melting with jealousy.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:41 AM on June 21, 2018 [15 favorites]

I had the uneasy realization yesterday that I've been periodically taking out some work frustration on one of my co-workers. I sucked it up and ate crow, and she let me know that she really had been bristling at it and wasn't happy about the situation either. The problem is definitely mine, and I have to just sit with owning that fact for a while. Which is never fun. Important, but not fun.

This thread is helping me metabolize the "I'm ashamed of myself" chemicals, so thanks.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:06 AM on June 21, 2018 [14 favorites]

The Underpants Monster, what's your secret?
posted by platitudipus at 10:09 AM on June 21, 2018 [3 favorites]

Good stuff: I made cookie dough last night and put it in the fridge to mush all the flavors together, and tonight I will bake up a big batch of NutJobber Chocolate Chip cookies.

Also my niece is home for the weekend and we will have dinner together on Sunday.

And this afternoon I'm having drinks with some former coworkers, which will be nice.
posted by suelac at 10:12 AM on June 21, 2018 [7 favorites]

My wife and I are running to be on the Democratic county committee for our area and literally everyone we’ve asked for a signature has enthusiastically given it to us and people are surprisingly excited. None of them even really knew us except having seen us in the apartment complex but once they found out what we’re doing were super nice.

If the party doesn’t run anyone against us (they’ve threatened to) we automatically get on with the signatures so uh in a few months we may or may not be an actual part of the Kings county Democratic Party process. At the very least our names are gonna be on the ballot which is exciting.
posted by griphus at 10:51 AM on June 21, 2018 [25 favorites]

I've been listening to this thread for the past 20mn of my lunch break and it's been the highlight of my week. Listening to other positive stories make me feel also positive about the future.

As of July 5th, i will have been employed for a year, and paying taxes; I've also been recommended for a raise. As of the 23rd, I will have survived another year, which I wasn't sure I would be able to. As of last week, I've been able to keep up my rowing routine, and when I checked my rowing records this morning, i realized that my heart is so so much stronger than it was last year. Maybe I'll do that marathon by december.
posted by tedious at 10:57 AM on June 21, 2018 [15 favorites]

I petted my sleepy cat and she made a quiet "prrp!" and stretched her toe beans. It was the most pure thing I've seen in my life.

The author Tom Cox has christened this the Cat Activation Noise.

My old cat is not dying (well, at least not dying as quickly as I thought she was, given that she's 19). I took her to the vet, thinking it probably wasn't going to be that visit, but it might be the visit before that visit. She was skinny as a rake, falling off tables standing still, back legs would slide out from underneath her like she was a drunk ice skater, but also very old with a long list of health problems.

Turns out she also has a potassium deficiency, and after a month on supplements she's better than she's been for about a year. Back to her old annoying attention-seeking self, putting weight on and waking me up at sunrise to shoot the breeze (and it was the solstice today, so yeah, thanks cat). I wouldn't have it any other way.

Anyway, moral is, don't write off old animals.
posted by Helga-woo at 11:12 AM on June 21, 2018 [15 favorites]

The missus and I are going to see the Mr. Rogers film tomorrow, and for the first time in my life I'm taking Kleenex to a movie.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:14 AM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

Also, I found out that what I had meant to be good-natured ribbing about a MeFite's art on Facebook had been taken as puzzling hostility for quite a while, so I got to grovel both publicly and privately whilst reminding myself that the failure mode of clever is "asshole."
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:22 AM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

I used to play Dungeons & Dragons quite a bit, but it's been more than 25 years since I last had a regular game. Just this past week, I got my copy of Invisible Sun in the mail, and it is just gorgeous. Like, so beautifully and elaborately designed that I suspect it can't possibly be a viable product in the long term, so it's a good thing they went the Kickstarter route.

And I've talked my daughter and my two nephews into participating in a game this summer, which is especially awesome, because my mom died a few months ago and I've been looking for opportunities to spend more time with my extended family.
posted by Ipsifendus at 11:30 AM on June 21, 2018 [7 favorites]

I think I might actually be dipping back into my work and remembering what I love about it. I'm writing this paper--slowly, crabbily, but I'm still writing it--and plotting my upcoming summer of experiments. I'm reaching out to people who write papers I like and telling them I liked them, and having conversations about things that bug me about the research generally. I think my research program is going to be boilable down to the word context and I'm happy with that. I think I'm finally beginning to get some of my confidence back, and I have two conferences coming up which are historically rejuvenating for me.

Also, in two weeks I'm going to have bedroom floors again. I'm so excited about that I can taste it.
posted by sciatrix at 11:32 AM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

My wife's sister has a new baby making her entrance into the world imminently, and we just made plans to visit the family in PDX in August.
posted by emelenjr at 11:38 AM on June 21, 2018 [8 favorites]

Apologies, I forgot the cat tax. Here's an old cat in the sun
posted by Helga-woo at 11:55 AM on June 21, 2018 [16 favorites]

I bought my first real on-my-own car last week and I am getting compliments on it. I don't have long to enjoy it but it's mine. I really love it.
posted by Freeze Peach at 12:17 PM on June 21, 2018 [10 favorites]

As I enter into middle age, I've started playing my first regular D&D game. It's really fun, and everyone at the table seems totally into it.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 12:41 PM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

I love old cats. They're just so over it and most cats are over it to begin with and can barely be bothered with our tired human shit, but old cats, even more. They're so chill and done and it pleases me.
posted by Fizz at 12:46 PM on June 21, 2018 [7 favorites]

The Underpants Monster, what's your secret?

posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:46 PM on June 21, 2018 [5 favorites]

Meanwhile on the young cat front...
posted by drlith at 12:53 PM on June 21, 2018 [10 favorites]

My two year old son refused to go to sleep last night, so I picked him up and put him on the big bed, gave him his favorite toy cars, and I laid down next to him. And there we were in the dim light of a night light for an hour, while he played with his toys on the bed and giggled and sang and talked to himself, and eventually he snuggled up to me and went to sleep. It was the best.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 1:08 PM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

I had a really awesome interaction with my kid a couple days ago thats been giving me some serious hope lately.

He was drawing at the table while I was making dinner and just blurts out "What's a demon?!" And I just shrugged it off and told him it was kind of like a ghost (It should be noted, this is my only talent as a parent is taking very adult concepts and explaining them in kid-worldview-terms: People on a labor strike = People having a parade to tell their bosses they need to be treated better; demons = ghosts; etc).
He says "Oh, okay. So they're not real, and just in stories like unicorns, monsters and god?"
"Uh, yeah, pretty much."
"But some people believe their real, right? Like kids at school?"
"Yeah, some people do."
"But I don't. Neither do you and Mama. Grandma and Poppa do though, thats why we don't say goddamnit around them, right?"
"Yeah buddy, people can believe whatever they want to, but the same goes for yo-"
"HEY WHATS THAT OUTSIDE?!?" he blurts out and darts for the backyard as the ADHD takes the wheel.

It was just a little two-minute conversation between us, but it hit me so hard. The most awful parts of being raised in a conservative religious sect still reverberate and ripple through my life and still alter my day-to-day, and probably always will. In that moment though, I realize that massive amount of anxiety/guilt/terror/shame stops with me. I get to do therapy and repair work because of the way I was raised, but he won't need to. He is totally free of that; he doesn't feel the constant weight of religion and deep, deep fear of going to hell. This was the first time it was just so obvious it's not even in his brain-space. In his worldview, religion is just something some people believe. He's surprisingly respectful of that (because...uh, I'm not always the best role model in that department), but could really give a shit otherwise, and sometimes likes stories with those pieces in them. He also doesn't need religion to be good, sweet, and caring. He is all of those things without the constant fear of being a 'sinner' and going to hell.

I'm just so deeply thankful that he doesn't have to feel those particular awful feeling day after day for years and years on end. They're just not going to be a part of his experience, which, for this humanist is the greatest comfort.
posted by furnace.heart at 1:11 PM on June 21, 2018 [20 favorites]

My niece turns two in a couple days then my birthday is two days after, so we're having a family birthdays celebration at my parent's this weekend. My mom apologized that she ordered a cake with my niece in mind, that I'll have to share a Moana cake with her. I said, are you kidding a Moana cake is awesome!
posted by peeedro at 1:11 PM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

Earlier in the year, my UU Fellowship had a Pay It Forward style reverse offering. Each person got an unmarked envelope with between $1 and $100 in it with the charge to 'do good' in the community with it.

It was shortly after I read this link and gave me the push to contact my local library to see if we could start an overdue fine forgiveness program. It took some back and forth (with a really excellent library staff person) and they're piloting a program to accept donations in September starting with the seed money I donated.

I'll be writing a church newsletter article later this summer to alert the congregation if they want to contribute as well. I'm as pessimistic as I've ever been about the future but feel like helping make sure more people gets access to all the beneficial things a library offers is a little way to help make the future better.
posted by Twicketface at 1:17 PM on June 21, 2018 [18 favorites]

"HEY WHATS THAT OUTSIDE?!?" he blurts out and darts for the backyard as the ADHD takes the wheel.

Thank you for that lovely phrase — can so relate to my own day-to-day brain.

Also the rest of your comment — one of the greatest things I ever accidentally did was have a stepson who helped me heal my own upbringing (not unlike yours it sounds like) just by being himself. Even though my ex and I did not work out, having that kid in my life made all of the struggles worthwhile.
posted by Celsius1414 at 1:44 PM on June 21, 2018 [8 favorites]

I really fucking love frosés.
posted by octobersurprise at 1:49 PM on June 21, 2018 [6 favorites]

I finished the Glasgow Men's 10K on Sunday. Slower than the last time I did it, but I don't care: I trained, I showed up, I started, I finished! It won't be the last race I ever enter - I can improve later.
posted by Wrinkled Stumpskin at 2:25 PM on June 21, 2018 [11 favorites]

I really fucking love frosés.

I'd never heard that word before and I am immediately on board.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:26 PM on June 21, 2018 [8 favorites]

Speaking of young cats, the kittens I rescued are doing great - the meezer and this darling girl went to their new homes this weekend, and Mr. chatty (video) is going to his new home tonight. If you need a black kitten, hit them up.

The girl kitten went to one of my co-workers and her family is in love with the kitten, so I get to hear stories about her antics every day, which is a great start to the morning.
posted by mogget at 2:27 PM on June 21, 2018 [10 favorites]

I'd never heard that word before and I am immediately on board.

Taste our pleasures!
posted by octobersurprise at 2:41 PM on June 21, 2018 [2 favorites]

In other summer good news, I can go for evening walks and see fireflies, which always makes me feel like the world is pretty great.

I had forgotten that fireflies exist, and remembering that fireflies exist makes me immensely happy.

Also mudpuppie's story made me cry.

Yesterday I finished my arbitrary challenge to myself to walk/hike 100 miles between May 19 and Solstice. I only counted walking for walking's sake, so not running errands, daily walking during the course of work, etc. I thought I wasn't going to make it, then I pushed down to 10 miles needed in the last two days -- then my aunt let me know I had the date of Solstice wrong and that I had THREE days, the last of which (yesterday) I had already scheduled to take off work early. So rather than having to trudge through a bunch of kind of dispiriting obligation-walks around my work parking lot, I got to finish up the 100 miles at the top of a local peak on one of my favorite 5-mile hikes. There's a picnic table at that spot that overlooks all the surrounding hills and vineyards, so I also sat and meditated there for 20 minutes before going back down.

Yesterday was pretty much a lovely mix of things: I was reasonably effective with a difficult client at work and gave some important coaching/feedback to a supervisee; I went on a lovely 5-mile hike up a mountain; I meditated; I went to the gym and stretched sat in the sauna and hot tub until I started to feel human again (100 miles is a lot of miles!); I went to a pro-immigration rally; then I went home and ate leftover pad thai and scritched the cats.

Other lovely thing: For the last few mornings, when I'm drinking my morning tea, I can look out the window and generally see a Great Heron stalking in the field, a gaggle of three adult turkeys and about 25 turklets, and a Red-Shouldered Hawk parent teaching its teenager how to hunt. (Luckily the hawk does not seem to be hunting the turklets.)
posted by lazuli at 2:51 PM on June 21, 2018 [14 favorites]

I have been self-medicating my ADD with caffeine for quite awhile, which was working okay right up until it very much was not, and my panic attacks have been getting progressively worse for awhile for partly personal reasons and partly, well, the world. A lot of why I was trying to avoid meds was because I'd had such a hard time with doctors and the state treating me like a junkie for needing scheduled substances. I finally got an appointment made and got into a psychiatrist today, and he was night and day better than the last couple I've been to, and I have meds now. That doesn't fix everything in my life but it's one less thing to freak out about and it helps so much.
posted by Sequence at 3:00 PM on June 21, 2018 [18 favorites]

Oh! And I tracked elevation and ended up climbing 7072 feet over the course of the month, which I discovered is the height of Mount Hua in China, so I got to read a bit about Mount Hua last night.
posted by lazuli at 3:03 PM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

I was invited to speak at a conference in Vail tomorrow. Vail is awfully pleasant in the summer (well, and in the winter too).

After my parents gave her a sleeping bag, my 2.5 year old is fired up about camping, so we're going to smash my new-ish truck up some 4wd roads and camp near treeline and it's probably going to be awesome (though it could potentially be terrible).

When I was picking up a book at the library, which is across the street from my office, they were having a book sale and now I have an embarrassingly heavy bag of new books and presents for my wife and daughter.

I got to surf before work today, and I live in a land-locked state. River surfing is awesome.

Last weekend we went to a wedding with some of our friends, who also have a 2.5 year old, and we got to stay at a beautiful venue in the mountains and turn the kids loose on each other and in the big meadow next to the lodge. And kiddo is super cute at the moment, with giant curls, and though people probably took more photos of the bride than of kiddo, I don't think it was by much.
posted by craven_morhead at 3:06 PM on June 21, 2018 [9 favorites]

This thread is wonderful and so needed. Thanks, Fizz and everyone who posted!

As I mentioned in the state of the site thread, I have a new job! After five months of looking I wasn't able to be that choosy, and there are things that are not ideal about it, but the people are wonderful and I have a really good feeling about it.

Also I made this Golden Coconut Lentil Soup today and it was nom and now I feel like a kitchen wizard. (I could have posted this in the Budget Bytes thread, I guess)
posted by sunset in snow country at 3:40 PM on June 21, 2018 [15 favorites]

We have now tried the Maximum Chocolate ice cream and it is, as advertised, more than a little chocolatey.

It's so dense that the ice cream maker basically couldn't push as much air in as I'd have wanted. It's scoopable, but that's about it. Very much a self-limiting treat (as in, you only want a little bit).
posted by Making You Bored For Science at 6:33 PM on June 21, 2018 [7 favorites]

I won't be homeless.
posted by Freelance Demiurge at 6:56 PM on June 21, 2018 [30 favorites]

Almost 20 years ago I got to play Eleanor of Aquitaine (when I was just over 30). I get to do it again in July, with all my terrible life decisions since then to give it extra oomph. It's playing at my lovely home theatre, The Incinerator, in Ipswich from 11 July. Here's a little snippet.
posted by h00py at 8:24 PM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

I had forgotten that fireflies exist, and remembering that fireflies exist makes me immensely happy.

Oh! Thank you for the reminder, as I had forgotten too. And because of that comment, remembered had bookmarked a nice short video of fireflies in Iowa.

...which led to going through other bookmarked but long forgotten vimeo videos, and re-enjoying on the biggest screen I have:

- The Northern Lights in Finnish Lapland, a tourist board film.
- A slow-motion of a cheetah, set to New Seeds by Boards of Canada (there was an FPP a few years back?).
- The Earth by night, seen from the ISS.
- Some timelapses of cities, mostly at night, made at the time everyone was putting that particular track from Inception on their timelapse. In this case, it worked.
- A timelapse (yes I went through a timelapse phase) of the Northern Lights in rural Norway, most of it being one night-long tracking shot, set to Macquarie Ridge by Boards of Canada.
- Woodkid's Run Boy Run video, which I sometimes used as a motivator before tackling something difficult or hostile.
posted by Wordshore at 11:10 PM on June 21, 2018 [12 favorites]

Wordshore's fireflies video reminded me of another good and wholesome story! Gather round, mefites.

A few years ago, a college friend of mine from England (we met on my junior year abroad) was visiting DC. We were showing her around town on one of those lovely and rare warm-but-not-too-warm, muggy-but-not-too-muggy summer nights, when we passed by a field. My friend stopped in her tracks and her eyes grew wide with wonder: there were hundreds of fireflies lazily hovering over the grass, flickering on and off.

Not only had my friend never seen fireflies, but she had somehow picked up the idea that fireflies were not real--that they were mythological, like unicorns. And now she was staring at hundreds of them.

It's rare that you get to witness an adult overcome with childlike wonder. It's absolutely lovely.
posted by duffell at 11:20 PM on June 21, 2018 [30 favorites]

I'm sorry for skipping to the bottom, I promise to dip into your good things soon I need it for sure but it's late now and I just saw Fizz' prompt and I wanted to think of something good but I'm straight over from the Poli—well, I'll skip that shit too and say I thought of something good eventually. Here goes

In the course of my work I get to sit with parents and their children and look at their officialest documents. It's paperwork, bureaucracy, and the kids have to be there for it. Event he parents really don't have to be there and though the process to get out of the meeting is super-mega-onerous parents go to the trouble all the time to avoid coming in on behalf of their kids. But their kids don't get that choice, the meeting's about them, they have to be there.

They, and me. So I figure it's about them (not about the 'rents) and mostly just conduct the interview with the child(ren). This is difficult and hilarious in varying degrees depending on age, but there's a big sweet spot around 5-13 and doing this is my favorite thing I get paid to do so,

Have you seen this before? NO?
Well, do you know what it is? I mean, it's about you.
Yep, it's the story of the day you were born. A pretty short version, obviously, but still I need to read it to be sure you were born.
You were born, right? I mean, did you hatch? Like a dinosaur/lizard/bird (I have to throw some variation in here, and often they have suggestions for other things that have hatched)? NO?
Huh, and you didn't fall off a tree and grow out the ground? No, I didn't think so.
After all, this says you were born, right there at the top. Birth Certificate. Certificate means it's official, so I believe this story.
It's on fancy paper too, with little threads in it like you see on money. Super official.
Plus, there's a seal on it! (for the 13y/o who just isn't having this schtick, I go ultra ridic here and mimic balancing a red ball on my nose and say "OHR OHR OHR," which at the very least is good for an involuntary and quickly-corrected half smile.) Seals are the most official aquatic mammal.
So good news! Definitely you were not assembled from spare parts and clearly you were actually born. Like a human.
Look, there's your name right there.
[We spell the name if dictated by child's present education level.]
That's you, right? Well, then. And here's the day you were born, June 5 2011, right? So you're....?
Seven! Just as I suspected. And you'll be seven for just one year?
Oh I see, yes definitely, I say stay young. (The previous question is deliciously absurd to the point that it stops most kids cold. This joke may just be for me, and maybe I throw a bone to the chauffeurs and accountants—I mean parents.)
And it says here you were born at 17:57. That's the time of day, I guess, but I don't see it on my clock? It only goes up to 12.
[Occasionally we talk about clocks and how many hours in a day, time zones, etc.]
Anyway, that's a drag for you: You can't celebrate until after dinner! Your sister gets to celebrate as soon as she rolls out of bed in the morning on her birthday, since she was born at 1am your poor mother.
Har har, just kidding, you should celebrate all week!

We look at the parents' names and talk about mom's mom and mom's dad having a different name (sometimes).
I tell them the name of the doctor (or whomever, depending) who caught them (or suctioned them out as mom sometimes interjects) and made sure they didn't bounce on the ground.
Mom or dad's signature, ward supervisor's signature (weird people sign your birth certificate, it turns out), and that's usually the extent of the info.

So that, Child, is the very short story of the day you were born. I'm sure if you wanted to know more about it you could ask mom and dad here, it was pretty much the best day of their lives at that point. [Lots of nodding.]

And sometimes I get to this point and I need to turn around and fake a sneeze to wipe the tears out of my eyes. Sometimes I don't get to read BCs with their owners, and like I said some parents don't show up for their kids or it's apparent otherwise that performing the schtick wouldn't be appropriate. But often enough it is a Good Thing to talk to a kiddo about the day they were born (not dropped off by a suspicious UFO).

Also good is the next part of the meeting, where I take the kid's picture. Have you had your picture taken before? Oh good, so you know how cameras work? =D
posted by carsonb at 11:37 PM on June 21, 2018 [18 favorites]

Melismata: I went to NYC last week and blew more than $300 at Mood Fabrics and others.

Haha, I did exactly too, and got a nice sunny day yesterday to prewash and line dry my fabrics. The Garment District is a wonderland.

Relatedly, I got married a couple of weeks ago and spent my honeymoon in NYC, and it all went smoothly - the wedding managed our goal of "a normal but great day" with 6 guests, and New York was amazing. I'm trying to hold onto that feeling of being lucky and grateful.
posted by carbide at 12:29 AM on June 22, 2018 [8 favorites]

moonmilk: My 44 yard long custom woven glitch tapestry is on view in an exhibition in Dublin!

Oh wow, your piece looks amazing - thank you for mentioning it, I'm going to check out the exhibition next time I'm in town.
posted by carbide at 1:47 AM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

The book City of Brass is seriously good and I am so happy to have a muslim-themed historical YA that is grounded in actual Islamic myth and history AND well written.

Hi dorothyisunderwood, you need some Saad Hossain in your life!

This thread is great, sometimes you need your eyes opened to the good things happening all around you which don't make the headlines.

My good things:

1) I'm revisiting Terry Pratchett as a comfort measure, and it's working. His work has aged quite well for me given that I first started reading him 20 years ago.

2) Using advice on clearing out books from AskMe, I have done a big book clear-out. It's hard saying goodbye to books, so it's really useful to get good advice from fellow bookworms with limited storage space.
posted by Ziggy500 at 2:27 AM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

I thought of a good thing:

Earlier I talked about being in a bit of a funk because of work. I did fuck up while handling work frustration, and I do still need to own that and work on improving.

But when I mentioned that all to my roommate yesterday, he very vocally and passionately came to my defense - I hadn't done anything wrong, I was being given work that wasn't mine, and that deserved my speaking up and protesting, dammit! I'm not sure I completely agree, but hearing someone so vocally in my camp helped a lot.

I've had roommates recently who were just sort of keep-to-themselves, cordial-but-separate folk, which suited me fine at the time. It's been a long time since I had a roommate who really felt like they were anything above and beyond a financial collaborator and was being a friend as well, and I forgot what that felt like; it's a blessing.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:54 AM on June 22, 2018 [9 favorites]

My two year old just opened the Tupperware with the graham crackers and made sure to hand me one before getting one for himself.

Managed to survive the work big annual fundraising gala on Wednesday. And got a last minute ticket for my husband so we could snatch a few minutes together in a garden - and I had a few sips of his Bellini.
posted by sciencegeek at 4:55 AM on June 22, 2018 [8 favorites]

So everything is fine in my life, but I have been unable to feel satisfaction for like years, so have been trying unsuccessfully to find something good to add to this thread.

I mean my job is fine, family is fine, running is going fairly well, but there is no spark, right? I realize I should count my blessings, and I am thankful that everything is fine, but it just isn't exciting.

Anyway, that all changed this morning when the kids woke up at like 6am. I decided I wanted to Netflix and chill (which means they watch Netflix while I chill), and when I turned on the tv for them I found the answer to this question, which I asked more than fifteen months ago. I know that in comparison to everything else it is so small and inconsequential, but man, I am tickled pink.
posted by Literaryhero at 5:26 AM on June 22, 2018 [10 favorites]

Seals are the most official aquatic mammal.

I approve of this message.
posted by arcticseal at 5:46 AM on June 22, 2018 [12 favorites]

I got the shishito peppers yesterday and cooked some to have with my dinner (just blistered in cast iron skillet and sprinkled with salt). They were quite a bit spicier than I had been led to believe... I like spicy, but have never chowed down on a bowl of unadulterated chili peppers before. Maybe I just got a hotter-than-average batch.
posted by sevenyearlurk at 6:35 AM on June 22, 2018 [4 favorites]

I will be taking my almost-16-year-old on her first two college tours tomorrow. It's bittersweet to think that she's that much closer to leaving the nest, but I'm immensely proud of her and excited to see what she thinks about these schools.
posted by cheapskatebay at 6:37 AM on June 22, 2018 [5 favorites]

Maybe I just got a hotter-than-average batch.

Hi, shishito evangelist here. It's still a little bit of a mystery why some are hotter than others, but my backyard experience suggests that the chances of getting a hotter one might correlate with how long they stay on the plant. I just harvested and cooked my first handful of peppers this year (on a 2-year-old plant that's only given me a few hot ones) and they were mild enough to feed a baby, but later in the summer when the plant is huge and the damn things hide from me, I'll start getting rogue ones.

As an experiment, I'm leaving Plant 0 where it is, next to a similarly-aged jalapeno plant, and Plant 1 is next to another hot pepper, but planting my other 3 well away among cucumbers and tomatoes and no other peppers, to see if there's any kind of cross-breeding factor involved.
posted by Lyn Never at 7:56 AM on June 22, 2018 [4 favorites]

As a shishito pepper eater but not gardener, I know that the culinary wisdom is that in a bowl of blistered peppers, you'll occasionally get a super-spicy one and there's no real way to tell which individual pepper might be spicier than the others. I'd love to hear if it is something to do with how individual plants are grown!
posted by lazuli at 8:09 AM on June 22, 2018 [2 favorites]

In other summer good news, I can go for evening walks and see fireflies, which always makes me feel like the world is pretty great.

One of the few things I like about my house was the fireflies. I say was, because they had disappeared for a few years. But a few weeks ago, I was sitting on my porch and caught a flicker out of the corner of my eye. I sat there for so long, smiling so big, with the happiest of tears of my eyes.

But that's not my good thing.

Kid Ruki is 16 and had never seen a firefly. We came home at dusk a few nights ago and I showed her the fireflies. We stood in the driveway together and watched them in awed silence. For a brief moment I got to turn back time as I looked at my amazing, accomplished grown-up daughter and saw the face of a child.

I have always loved fireflies. I love them even more now for giving me that gift.
posted by Ruki at 8:17 AM on June 22, 2018 [14 favorites]

Reason 2 to say "yay my roommate rocks" from last night, this conversation:

ROOMMATE: So now that my voter registration has switched over to this district I should look up who the rep is and get on his case about protesting the family separations at the border.

ME: Oh, I know this - it's Hakeem Jeffries. I don't remember seeing any statements from him, but it's safe to say that he's on our side.

ROOMMATE (indignant): Being "on our side" isn't good enough! I want a public statement of condemnation, dammit!

posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:55 AM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

EmpressCallipygos: Man, I hear you on good roommates. The whole no-bedrooms situation is really, really making me grateful for my two roommates, who have rolled with the punches without batting a hair and gamely thrown their shoulders into making this whole shitty situation better for all of us as well as they can. I fucking love them. It is so, so, nice to live with other adults who get you and like you and who you like back and who have your back like you have theirs.

also my rep last night sent us all an email furiously condemning the family separations and placing the blame exactly where it belongs and I love him a lot, too
posted by sciatrix at 8:58 AM on June 22, 2018 [5 favorites]

This time a week ago I was buying Dessa tickets. I got great seats and briefly met Dessa herself and I AM NOT OVER IT EVEN A LITTLE, she is a goddamn delight. I might have convinced an awesome friend to join my DSA chapter, which is doing extremely good shit right now. Tomorrow I'm doing both tap dancing AND handstands, in that order.
posted by clavicle at 9:04 AM on June 22, 2018 [7 favorites]

Oh shit a new Lizzo video
posted by clavicle at 9:09 AM on June 22, 2018 [5 favorites]

A general rule of thumb with growing peppers (which I think has been somewhat proven, although I might have had the wool pulled over my eyes), is that a pepper plant that undergoes some stress produces hotter peppers. That could explain why peppers that stay on the plant longer seem to be hotter than those that are picked earlier. Staying on the plant longer presumably means enduring the warmer parts of the growing season, and possibly dryer soil/occasional wilting, all of which could put stress on the plant.

This has been your Friday-morning edition of Hypothetical Horticulture.
posted by mudpuppie at 9:11 AM on June 22, 2018 [9 favorites]

So I just had a great performance review, I'm getting involved with the local theatre group, my cardiologist has said I'm fine and I most likely just need to cut down on carbs and get more exercise...

...and just now as I got home I got a notification that one of my smaller student loans that I'd completely forgotten about has been paid in full, and I have no idea how that happened.

I keep going back and forth between "Hey, things are actually going pretty well" and "I wonder what terrible thing will happen to balance all this out".
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 9:47 AM on June 22, 2018 [9 favorites]

I got a pixie cut last Saturday and it is amazing. My hair was down past my shoulders before, and I have no idea why I didn't get it cut sooner, because I hated dealing with my heavy hot mess of hair.

I am now team short hair forever.

Oh, and I'm going to a D&D meetup on Saturday, with my level 1 half-orc paladin. I don't know any of the people going, but hopefully it will be a good time with plenty for my character to smash.
posted by minsies at 9:56 AM on June 22, 2018 [13 favorites]

My son, who has never really had the best time in school, earned the Outstanding
Student Award from the STEM curriculum, presented as an award at his middle school (8th grade) graduation. He was caught completely by surprise, and it was a great feather in his cap to end a tumultuous middle school career. I'm a proud dad.
posted by OHenryPacey at 10:31 AM on June 22, 2018 [18 favorites]

I've been trying to break into Canada's writing scene for years. I sold one story on my second attempt in 2004 and won a few small, local awards for it, and then everything stalled, with nothing but rejection after rejection. I got a lot of stuff like "we really like it, but it's not for us" comments, but no sales. I managed to find work as a book critic and as an editor, which keeps me involved, but getting my own work out there just never seemed to happen.

Until now! I sold another story, to a really excellent venue. They snapped it up almost immediately upon receiving it, made some excellent suggestions for minor edits that will make the story much stronger, and it's going to see print later in the year. It's been 13 years of submission after submission (and more than 10 years, for this particular story), but things are finally moving again. I am over the moon about it.
posted by Fish Sauce at 10:33 AM on June 22, 2018 [29 favorites]

-Just got my cholesterol checked and it's down 75 points thanks to my half-assed attempts to limit cheese, bacon, salami, I guess.
-I'm going to have a fifth grandchild in a few months, probably the last one, 5 is more than enough.
posted by mareli at 11:17 AM on June 22, 2018 [10 favorites]

Mr. eirias and I ordered new glasses and new prescription sunglasses this week and I can’t wait til they get here.
posted by eirias at 12:00 PM on June 22, 2018 [5 favorites]

We are getting a puppy on Tuesday (!!!!!!) Even the idea of it is such an island of happy in the middle of so so much despair that it's almost breaking my brain.
posted by Mchelly at 12:13 PM on June 22, 2018 [19 favorites]

Mchelly, we'll be needing photos later in the week.
posted by Fizz at 12:21 PM on June 22, 2018 [8 favorites]

It's pretty modest, but: this week, I received as a gift out of the blue a t-shirt which says "MY MACHINATIONS LAY UNDETECTED FOR YEARS," which tickles my inner supervillain no end.
posted by praemunire at 2:19 PM on June 22, 2018 [10 favorites]

I recorded a harpsichord solo CD two years ago on initiative of a harpsichord owner who wanted his instrument documented. So: a vanity project, the engineer a friend who now is 91 years old, me sitting two days in a church, playing. Trying to make the product professional, I helped with the editing and had another friend smooth over some rough patches in the silent tracks that came from the old equipment used. Afterwards we scraped together some funding for having it published, I got a label interested, and it was issued a few weeks ago, and the first thing that happens is that it gets an outstanding online review.
The review is in German so the bragging stops here. And I'm writing this only because it does make me happy, and because it's what my mom (and by implication my dad) would have liked to see happen (both died before they could see/hear it happen), and also because I have been spending my vacations for years in Staunton, Virginia, which is a beautiful place, and because I have had a shitty day because of Staunton featuring unfavorably in the world news today, and I needed to post something positive here.
posted by Namlit at 3:01 PM on June 22, 2018 [13 favorites]

yesterday my baby
looked me in the eye
& said "i love you papa."
she smiled & jumped
up & down a few times:
"i love jumping" she said
"& i love blue!"
posted by 20 year lurk at 3:03 PM on June 22, 2018 [15 favorites]

Finally getting set up with a new primary care doc, which I've been dreading.. i went into the appointment, first thing up is to weigh..

I'm down FIFTY POUNDS since my cancer surgery last September!!!!!
posted by mrbill at 3:46 PM on June 22, 2018 [13 favorites]

I've enjoyed reading everyone's positivity in this thread, so I guess I'll share something I haven't told too many people around me because it might come across as bragging a bit but here goes.

A Japanese movie that I subtitled in English was screened in the competition at Cannes this year. It's called Asako I & II in English (Netemo Sametemo for those of you in Japan who might catch it when it's released later this year. No English subtitles in Japanese theaters though, unfortunately).

I've been subtitling films for over twenty years but don't have a say in what I work on; they're thrown my way and I just do them. So the long list of films I've churned out subtitles for include everything from Crayon Shinchan movies to teenage rom-coms to zombie gore and it's not like I deserve any credit for this particular movie being recognized at Cannes. But it still makes me happy because my life is basically sitting in front of a computer day in and day out translating stuff in my little corner of the world, so when something I've worked on gets the recognition it deserves, it's very rewarding.

The Palme d'Or went to Hirokazu Kore-eda this year and probably wiped out everyone's memory of Asako I & II having been screened there at all, but if you happen to catch it at a film fest or on a plane somewhere, do see it because it's a good movie and please stay in your seat until the end because my name will (probably) be on it. (^ ^)
posted by misozaki at 4:28 PM on June 22, 2018 [22 favorites]

My current client came through the office at 3:00 on Friday and said “Is anyone working on something burning my urgent that has to be done right now? No? LET’S GO TO THE PUB”.

MeFites, we went to the pub. She bought the first round.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:34 PM on June 22, 2018 [11 favorites]

My manager sent everyone home an hour early today. As I was getting ready to leave, her 11 year-old daughter, who is autistic and has some challenges with social interactions, came up and shyly gave me a hug and said, "I love you like a friend." So that made my day.
posted by lazuli at 5:45 PM on June 22, 2018 [13 favorites]

(And I of course told her that I loved her like a friend, too!)
posted by lazuli at 5:46 PM on June 22, 2018 [9 favorites]

My dad texted me yesterday to say that he was going down to the bay to go fishing and did I want to come. I haven't fished with my dad since I was a kid. We went, caught (and released) a few fish, enjoyed a really great summer solstice sunset, and overall just had a really nice time together. He's been doing quite a bit of hiking (my thing) with me lately, so it was great to do some fishing (his thing) with him. Hopefully it'll become a regular event.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:18 PM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

Oh, and I think this summer we'll get to do an overnight trip where we hike out to a pond, camp, and do some fishing for our dinner, which will combine both of our things. Really looking forward to that.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:20 PM on June 22, 2018 [3 favorites]

I'm meeting another MeFite this weekend for a lunch. They're in the Niagara region and we made plans to eat some good local food. I'm quite excited, we've never hung out before but I'm sure it's going to be super chill. :D
posted by Fizz at 6:44 PM on June 22, 2018 [8 favorites]

...came up and shyly gave me a hug and said, "I love you like a friend."



I love all of you like friends. Thank you for this thread.
posted by mudpuppie at 6:54 PM on June 22, 2018 [26 favorites]

I love *you* like a friend, too!
posted by lazuli at 6:56 PM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

d'awwww, you guuuuuys. C'mere, you.
posted by duffell at 7:10 PM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

Shy hugs to all MeFites!
posted by lazuli at 7:15 PM on June 22, 2018 [6 favorites]

I like hugs.
posted by Fizz at 7:18 PM on June 22, 2018 [5 favorites]

Also, only 1 more hour in my work shift and done for the weekend.

It's slowed down, so I'm just checked out mentally and watching Northernlion play some Binding of Isaac and it's calming me down, so it's a nice way to end this hectic work week.
posted by Fizz at 7:25 PM on June 22, 2018 [4 favorites]

More toddler chronicles: I just learned that yesterday at daycare, when the kiddos were shirtless in preparation for finger-painting, my child started happily chanting, "I have two nipples, I have two nipples" and pretty soon all of the kiddos were chanting "I have two nipples!" The teachers thought this was very funny.
posted by duffell at 7:31 PM on June 22, 2018 [15 favorites]

I heart duffell's toddler!
posted by lazuli at 7:33 PM on June 22, 2018 [3 favorites]

* raises hand for attention *

* clears throat *

...I have just finally gotten around to watching The Great British Bake Off for the first time ever and my god it is adorable and I want to hug absolutely everyone on the show.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:38 PM on June 22, 2018 [14 favorites]

I love fruit, especially summer's best peach bounty, so I had one. It was delicious.

In the PNW, summer means the arrival of Rainier cherries. They’re only present for about four weeks in June and July so everyone knows to gobble them up while you can. More like miniature sweet and juicy plums than cherries, you can’t do anything with them besides eat them fresh and they are delicious. Over the years, they’ve become more expensive and bags are smaller which makes me think they are starting to get popular for export but they are still as sure a sign of summer in Seattle as the appearance of life guards at Green Lake and the arrival of the Seafair Pirates at Alki and Shakespeare at Volunteer Park and the fact that most of you have no idea what I’m talking about makes me relish even more the unique loveliness of summer in Seattle, when no one takes vacation because why would you want to be anywhere else?
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 2:10 AM on June 23, 2018 [6 favorites]

Rainier cherries!!! The list of foods I’m going to eat when I get home is as long as my arm.

I’m awaiting a slice of pizza and have been salivating overvthe thought for nearly an hour.

Tentative release from hospital is Monday morning. Looks like I fly Monday night.

I’m in a different quarantine room today. Bright and sunny with a view of a helicopter pad. I hope nobody needs the helicopter today but I’m so glad it’s here if they do.

My heart is just full to bursting with wonder and gratitude. I didn’t die this week because an enormous team of people work very hard. I am so lucky.
posted by bilabial at 3:57 AM on June 23, 2018 [17 favorites]

I recently finished my year at a woodwork, blacksmithing, and handcraft school in northern Sweden. For my final project I decided to make an automaton, and it has honestly been one of the hardest challenges I've ever had - lots of problems to solve, lots of new thing to learn, lots of new tools and tequniques, lots of things going wrong. But I got there! I took it to a market recently and it was so wonderful to see children playing with it, being amazed and fascinated by it, and reflecting the sense of wonder that I've always had with similar things.

I also just finished making a little film of it, which is here.
posted by twirlypen at 5:06 AM on June 23, 2018 [22 favorites]

twirlypen, that thing is amazing! I am in awe of people who can make things like that. Well done!
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:56 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

I just realized that the I've Pet That Dog kid lives about an hour away from me. If I had a dog, I could totally have that kid pet it! I am contemplating dog ownership but not sure I'm up for the responsibility, so for now I'm settling for looking at the doggies on the animal shelter website and following dog picture accounts on Twitter.

(I was worried that I've Pet That Dog would turn out to be a milkshake duck, but I found Gideon's mom's twitter, and her politics are fine. And Gideon is nine, which I think is too young to be a milkshake duck, because nobody has politics when they're nine.)

My basil plants are growing like gangbusters. I think I may need to make and freeze some pesto.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 7:16 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

Thanks! I've also always been amazed by people who can make things like that, and it feels a bit strange to... be... a person who has made a thing. Maybe it's much easier to see talent and confidence in other people's work, and only the mistakes and the imperfections in your own :)
posted by twirlypen at 7:37 AM on June 23, 2018 [5 favorites]

twirlypen, that is wonderful! The video made me happy; I can't believe how amazing it much be in person.
posted by lazuli at 8:35 AM on June 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

That is so cool, twirlypen! I'd love to hear/see more about it and how you made it. A post for Projects, maybe?
posted by mogget at 8:42 AM on June 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

In the PNW, summer means the arrival of Rainier cherries. They’re only present for about four weeks in June and July so everyone knows to gobble them up while you can.

Did you know you can dry them? I've never seen them commercially dried, but if you do it yourself, they taste incredible.
posted by Margalo Epps at 9:04 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

Thanks mogget, and lazuli. I remembered that Projects exists after I posted here, and submitted a post there (currently waiting for mod approval). It's pretty thin, but I can add more detail about the process once it's up.
posted by twirlypen at 9:20 AM on June 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Here's a good thing that happened to someone else: National Treasure Alexandra Petri got married.
My favorite parts of other people’s weddings were when things went wrong; filibuster toasts, things being lit on fire, unexpected and bizarre requests from the officiant during the course of the ceremony that the couple struggled to perform. I first tried to set up a wedding where as much could go wrong as possible (“Why don’t we hire a Hamilton impersonator and a Burr impersonator, and make them fight?”), but then my mother became involved in the planning.

Fairy tale or not, it seems unfair that this nice thing should be happening in this small corner of the universe when so much else is going on. But I suppose that in the most practical sense, that’s what marriage is, if you have no cattle to bestow: a nice thing that is happening in a small corner of the universe. A vow to try to decrease the entropy in the spot where you find yourself, at least for one other person. Through some combination of contributing energy and contributing order, we will manage perhaps to make this corner of the universe nicer at least for each other. I will contribute the energy, and he will contribute the order, and sometimes vice versa, and sometimes both at once. And if suddenly we discover any cattle in my apartment, they will have to come along.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:20 AM on June 23, 2018 [9 favorites]

Rainier cherries made it to Minnesota a few years ago, and though I have also noticed the bags getting smaller and more expensive, I still look forward to them every year and buy more on every trip to the grocery store until they disappear again. It's my big grocery splurge of the year.
posted by Flannery Culp at 10:02 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

My wife and I closed on our first house last week! It's a bit eerie owning a house after spending the last 14 years renting apartments but we are excited to have a place that we can make our own.

On the subject of the house, it is quite old (by American standards) being (mostly) built in 1801. The original house was a trinity - a modest three story home with one room on each floor hence the name. This style of rowhome is still somewhat common in the older parts of Philadelphia. Anyway, sometime in the late 1800s or early 1900s an addition was built adding a second room to the first and second floors. The previous owner added a second room on the third floor about a decade ago.

We aren't moving till the middle of next month so we have time to get some things done. Our contractor just finished installing a range hood that vents outside instead of just recirculating all the aerosolized grease from high temperature cooking which was one of my most desired improvements. My wife is keen on painting both the kitchen and the living room and we just picked up the paints last night. The next few weeks will be rather busy as we paint those rooms and ALL THE DOORS. The previous owner for some inexplicable reason decided to paint all the raised panels on the interior doors the same color as the walls in that room. We are... not fond of this look so we will be repainting all of them.

On the professional side of things, I found out that a half dozen products that we had been working on will be going into Bed Bath & Beyond which is quite a relief considering that we had been working on them with BBB for over a year in one case. Our recent product launches at Home Depot and Walmart are also going really well. One of my favorite parts of my job is going into stores and seeing the products I helped develop on the shelves.
posted by nolnacs at 10:04 AM on June 23, 2018 [9 favorites]

To my surprise, the red guitar I bought the other day sounds remarkably like a (pedal) steel guitar using the bridge pickup, the whammy bar and lots of reverb, and it demanded I write a piece to celebrate this discovery. I've posted a demo to MeFiMu. And linked back to this thread, which should create a feedback loop.
posted by Grangousier at 10:58 AM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

More like crossing the streams, you lunatic!

Nice axe, man. Add a B-Bender and you're in business!
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:04 AM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

As promised.

I cried through most of the ceremony. I can't believe I'm the mother of a high schooler now. There are mother pictures at the Facebook page linked in my profile in the album marked 8th grade Graduation.
posted by 80 Cats in a Dog Suit at 11:47 AM on June 23, 2018 [8 favorites]

Tell me something good, indeed.
posted by Splunge at 12:46 PM on June 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

A few days ago while descending from the top of Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid we noticed a group of people who, instead of admiring the insane view, were instead raptly studying the trees below the edge of the road. On inquiring, we learned that these were birders from Ontario who’d come down for the sole purpose of spotting a rare migratory Bicknell’s Thrush during its brief, high-altitude nesting season. After a day’s hunting they’d heard calls, and individuals had been spotted, but not by the group at large.

Just as we joined, one beautiful specimen broke clear of the trees to alight below us where he seemed to pose for photographs. The birders were astonished, exclaiming they’d been looking hard for hours—a clear sighting with so little effort was unheard of. I even managed to get decent video of the little fellow in song. The Bicknell’s sounds like a raspy Wood Thrush (my favorite songbird). After that the birders were elated, with high fives all around, thanking us for being their lucky charms and declaring their day a major success.

The mountain summit was incredible, but the bird sighting was the sweet surprise cherry on its top.
posted by kinnakeet at 3:07 PM on June 23, 2018 [12 favorites]

For anyone wondering, this is what a Bicknell's Thrush looks like.
posted by Fizz at 3:21 PM on June 23, 2018 [5 favorites]

I survived the CFA level 2 exam today! Going out to dinner at a new restaurant nearby to celebrate (not that I'll know if I passed for another 2 months). Now I really have no excuse for my unemployment, so time to ramp up the job hunting.
posted by Kris10_b at 3:50 PM on June 23, 2018 [6 favorites]

Arlo Guthrie is doing four straight weekend shows at "The Church" (Alice's old church) in August.
posted by KazamaSmokers at 4:08 PM on June 23, 2018 [6 favorites]

Based on all the love for used ThinkPads in Ask, I just bought a new-to-me laptop five minutes ago! Under $200, nice specs, and a battery that lasts for dayyyyys. My current laptop quit charging the battery months ago, so I'm particularly excited about that.

I'm in Portland, it's a sunny day, I have fun plans with friends and then I present a poster next week.
posted by momus_window at 4:32 PM on June 23, 2018 [6 favorites]

I just got back from my first longer-than-a-holiday-weekend & outside-the-US vacation in I don't know how many years. Back in high school my family hosted an exchange (AFS) student from Sardinia who we've kept in touch with over the years. He was having a 50th birthday party which coincided with my brother[who works in Saudi Arabia]'s vacation time, so he suggested we all fly out to attend. I was pretty anxious about being away from work for 7 business days, the potential for all our worst family dynamics being brought to the boiling point during car trips, and worry over how my cat (Snow) would cope with loneliness and being pilled daily by a pet sitter.

But it all worked out pretty well. Sardinia was lovely, my family's dysfunctions stayed at minimal levels, Allessandro's birthday party was delightful, and the Italian/English translation apps I downloaded were a great help. I saw the Santu Atine Nuraghe, was introduced to the taste of Mirto liquor, and had some terrific seafood. And then I had 2 days in Rome for the major tourist sites (Vatican, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, Colosseum, Palatine Hill & Forum). And now I'm home with my cat, who is not letting me out of her sight and whose fur seems softer than I ever remembered. And unless there were a ton of email chains I was left out of after the first out-of-office bounce-backs, it seems like there weren't a ton of rush/crisis issues at work during the week, so Monday shouldn't be too jarring a return to routine.
posted by oh yeah! at 5:11 PM on June 23, 2018 [10 favorites]

I have a LOOOOOOOOT of strawberries from my CSA - easily 8 pints - and I managed to fit the churn for my ice cream maker in the freezer.

(Incidentally does anyone know of any good recipes for strawberries pls we already have tarts and shortcake and cake covered kthx)
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:54 PM on June 23, 2018 [5 favorites]

Work is being Eight Days Of The Week level wank again, but I've got this Sat and Sun off. Not a football fan, but hoping to catch up with most of my friends who I haven't seen for months to watch the England match and catch up tomorrow. Online interaction (forums, email, WhatsApp™, etc) is an absolute godsend for me and I'm not even the most geographically or situationally remote member of the group by any stretch. Shooting the shit, chewing the fat and a bit of human interaction with your mates are things which have value beyond measure.
posted by I'm always feeling, Blue at 7:02 PM on June 23, 2018 [3 favorites]

Ooh, ooh, I almost forgot: I found the best ice cream flavour in North America.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 8:27 PM on June 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

EmpressCallipygos: “good recipes for strawberries”
We stopped by a nearby roadside stand and found the nicest strawberries we ever ate. Wound up buying 20 pounds of them.

We made Chef John's strawberry jam. It was both more trouble than it was worth just like he said and so satisfying to can something after a long layoff. We also tried an America's Test Kitchen recipe. Food Wishes wound up very thick, but still good to spread. ATK didn't get as thick, so it doesn't stand up as well to peanut butter but still has a great flavor.

We also used a Food Wishes recipe for strawberry semifreddo which was divine. We made a Biscoff crust instead of the shortbread Chef John used and it was so good. You don't have to do it in individual ramekins and mess with plastic wrap like he does. We put it straight into 2 cup square Pyrex storage containers and it was fine.
posted by ob1quixote at 9:00 PM on June 23, 2018 [2 favorites]

I have Monday off work, so it's a fantastic, needed three day weekend! This coming Wednesday kicks off the first book club I've ever been a part of -- Summer Body Liberation book club! My nutritional therapist facilitates it and we're reading Body Respect by Linda Bacon, PhD and Lucy Aphramor, PhD. And when the book was picked I looked right up at my bookshelf and realized I already owned it but hadn't yet read it! Win win! Loving the book and so excited for the discussion.
posted by bologna on wry at 9:23 PM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

Twirlypen, that is indeed amazing. And now you clearly have skillz for making other amazing things. I can’t do anything that advanced but I love having skillz. I can bust out the perfect knot for any random application that requires rope to affix something and it’s cool how people are like: “sorcery!” Also I can make an amazing homemade pizza with little notice and can at least diagnose and sometimes fix car problems with little more than a description of the problem and a quick look under the hood. I can use one of my mom’s old discarded sewing machines to repair or improve any article of clothing anyone in my family owns. These random and seldom useful skillz must be savored and cherished.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:08 PM on June 23, 2018 [4 favorites]

I took my, two months shy of 70 year old, dad on an 8 mile hike with a bunch of elevation in the north Georgia mountains for fathers day weekend, and he handled it like a champ. I never thought we would finish the whole hike.
He is not as fast as he used to be, but damn is he country strong, and it just meant we had more time to talk. After he agreed to the idea, I started to think about all the reasons it might be a bad idea, but it turned out to be one of the best days I have had in a long while.
posted by mumblelard at 4:28 AM on June 24, 2018 [4 favorites]

If you're making a relatively small amount and it doesn't have to last for months, refrigerator jam is easier to make.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:14 AM on June 24, 2018 [2 favorites]

Also, loose strawberries freeze OK if you have the room.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:15 AM on June 24, 2018 [2 favorites]

Empress Callipygos: have you tried freezer jam? We had a similar glut of strawberries earlier in the year and turned a whole whack of them into strawberry-basil jam. Takes very little skill--you just mash up pectin, fruit, and if desired herbs and let it sit a minute-and tastes great. Especially over ice cream.

I am en route to the San Antonio Zoo with my partner and roommate in tow after a very productive week in which my sneaky partner bet I couldn't get my poster done by Saturday and ha I got it more or less put together and I found a cool new pattern in my PCA. So now I get to the zoo where I hear that they have animatronic dinosaurs and they definitely have a lorikeet feeding station and an elderly tapir I am quite fond of.

Also this gives us an excuse to go to Bucee's, the best truck stop in Texas, and I'm gonna get fudge and the good jerky. Aw yeah.
posted by sciatrix at 6:49 AM on June 24, 2018 [4 favorites]

I found the best ice cream flavour in North America.

Nope, the best ice cream flavor in North America is Superman ice cream.
posted by elsietheeel at 7:13 AM on June 24, 2018 [4 favorites]

Update: The peaches are gone, so I'm up to my ears in berries now. I made blackberry caramel brownies last night and they were SO GOOD.
posted by PearlRose at 7:18 AM on June 24, 2018 [4 favorites]

Anyone interested in pectin/jam: you want Pomona's pectin, which doesn't require sugar to set. It is so much easier to use and the jam is so much more delicious. You may have to visit a couple groceries, depending on how popular canning is near you.
posted by momus_window at 8:45 AM on June 24, 2018 [2 favorites]

Oh, I know about jam. The problem with jam is that I don't eat toast much, and my roommate already has some store-bought jam.

I'm also preplanning because last weeks' strawberries from this CSA started to go soft after only 2 days, so I'm trying to think ahead to "processing" ideas to keep them around longer that also don't require two people to subsist entirely on cakes and pies for the entire week. (I've already gone with my backpocket recipe, the strawberry rhubarb crisp bars from Smitten Kitchen.)

However, I did successfully clear enough room in the freezer yesterday to get the ice cream churn in there finally, so maybe a bunch of them will get converted into sorbet in a couple days.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:46 AM on June 24, 2018 [3 favorites]

Jam is excellent on plain yogurt ... not just toast.
posted by sciencegeek at 9:15 AM on June 24, 2018 [2 favorites]

Other uses for jam: Victoria Sponge.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 9:42 AM on June 24, 2018 [2 favorites]


I just remembered I have a recipe for a funky dessert where you first make a pudding using corn, and then when that's chilled you cut up some strawberries, put them on top, and then pour clear gelatine over that and chill it again. It sounded intriguing and looked really funky, and it would use up some frozen corn I've had in my freezer.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:35 PM on June 24, 2018 [3 favorites]

Nope, the best ice cream flavor in North America is Superman ice cream.

That contains only fruit flavors. If it doesn't have a caramel or caramel-adjacent substance (sponge candy qualifies), then it cannot be considered for Best Flavor. I'm sorry, but I don't make the rules.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 5:04 PM on June 24, 2018 [5 favorites]

Update: today I had a 90 min conversation with my Spanish teacher on the plot of Hereditary which we saw at the weekend. Had lots of fun talking about the 2 halves of the movie and now I know the Spanish for several horror terms that I will likely never need to use in business meetings! El mal!
posted by arcticseal at 6:29 AM on June 25, 2018 [3 favorites]

I'm wasn't sure which thread I wanted to put this in at first. I came home today -- after a decent day of work and some light shopping -- to find that my freezer door had been ajar for near 24 hours at that point. The meat is spoiled, some fruit popsicles leaked all over the bottom, the meat in the fridge sweet and bad since it leeched the cold from there, too.

But late May, my doctor futzed with my prescription amounts (twice a day instead of all at once, which was putting me to sleep mid-conversation); and by now I can tell something is working, because I cleaned it all up, mostly tired and detached, and now I'm just waiting on the ice to freeze to prove it's all working again. Three months ago I would have been crying on the floor.

Last night I laid out my blanket on my darkened living room floor and watched Jupiter cross the sky from the balcony windows. I got from level 16 to 20 in Pokemon Go. Found an apron with flamingos on it today, bought it; it was between the flamingos and some hedgehogs, but two days ago I told a friend "gosh I love flamingos" after seeing an Imgur post and I feel like it was a moment of prescience. I checked the meter, and the freezer mishap did not eat up as much electricity as I feared. The milk seems fine.
posted by lesser weasel at 6:38 AM on June 25, 2018 [11 favorites]

If anyone wants recipes for off-the-beaten path strawberry recipes, both sweet and savory: I have pretty good ones for strawberry cream pie, strawberry-arugula salad, strawberry salsa, strawberry caprese, strawberry cornmeal muffins, and of course, all the usual strawberry suspects.

They may or may not be one of my favorite foods. (I bought some yesterday because of this thread.)
posted by PearlRose at 6:48 AM on June 25, 2018 [2 favorites]

Here's something good that happened to me today.

I was out shopping, and went to the Store where Everything is Cheap and Some of it is Usable (that's not what it's called but it is what it is) hoping to buy a rubber broom. They're great for sweeping cat hair off of rugs. I was lucky because yes! they had them, so I bought one.

Riding my bicycle home, with the broom in my saddle bags (the handle is telescopic, so it wasn't very long) I saw three young boys sitting around an open drain in the street and looking in. I overheard something about bike keys. So I turned back and asked what the problem was: couldn't they reach them, or couldn't they see them? It turned out to be both. But I had just bought a thing with a long telescopic handle! And there's always lots of rubbish in my saddle bags, some of it might be useful.

In one of the saddle bags I found a hook from one of those elastic luggage straps that had broken. There were also some tie-wraps, that had been used and cut; some were still long enough to reuse. So we tied the hook to the broom handle, and the unlucky owner of the keys fished them out of the dirty water within five minutes.

The boys were very polite and thanked me at least five times for helping. I told them I enjoyed solving puzzles, and this one was like one of those computer games where you have to combine the things in your inventory to get a certain task done. And I said: who knows, I may have a problem some day, and then one of you might be nearby.

We parted in high spirits. And the broom works very well.
posted by Too-Ticky at 9:39 AM on June 25, 2018 [18 favorites]

Too-Ticky's story kind of explains why I find it hard to throw certain things away. I might need that hook or piece of dowel or fabric scrap someday! The very day I throw it away, probably!

If it doesn't have a caramel or caramel-adjacent substance (sponge candy qualifies), then it cannot be considered for Best Flavor.

I do not like caramel. Strangely though, I make very good salted caramels.
posted by elsietheeel at 10:19 AM on June 25, 2018 [5 favorites]

We can still be friends then.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:07 AM on June 25, 2018 [3 favorites]

Oh are we still here and doing recipes? Perfect. A good thing that happened to me yesterday is that a friend gave me a grocery bag stuffed full of fresh rose petals. I'm definitely doing simple syrup and infused gin, but what else? Infused heavy cream?
posted by clavicle at 1:11 PM on June 25, 2018 [3 favorites]

I did a spiced rose brandy once that turned out really nice. Otherwise, yes, infuse that cream and then make rose ice cream. Rose and cardamom. Or rose and raspberry.
posted by elsietheeel at 1:15 PM on June 25, 2018 [3 favorites]

I'm a severe, chronic insomniac, but over the past week I've been having the best, most restful sleep of my life. Like, twelve hours some bights. And incredible, vivid dreams, the kind where it's disappointing to wake up. Good dreams, not nightmares. I usually don't sleep deeply enough to have dreams I can remember in the morning

Well, that was nice while it lasted.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 2:30 AM on June 26, 2018 [1 favorite]

I completed an undergraduate degree in mathematics after a bit over four years and some dithering.
posted by solarion at 3:52 AM on June 26, 2018 [18 favorites]

posted by Dashy at 6:44 AM on June 26, 2018 [14 favorites]

Congrats, Dashy and solarion!

Sympathetic solidarity in sleeplessness, The Underpants Monster.
posted by lazuli at 6:46 AM on June 26, 2018 [2 favorites]

I mow a lot of grass here on the farm. Acres and acres of it. I mowed for almost 5 hours today. More than 8 acres and over 13 linear miles.

One of my great joys in life is that in the spring and early summer the swallows will come out from the barns and join me while I mow. They're after the bugs that I disturb as I cut the grass. As they dart and weave picking off the bugs, they get so close I could touch them. They'll fly right towards me and then veer away at the last possible second. They'll swoop in from the side and cross right in front of me just above the tips of the grass. They'll fly in formation and slash across my path diagonally. It's a real sight to behold and fills me with joy to watch.
posted by ob1quixote at 7:47 PM on June 26, 2018 [9 favorites]

Yes, the swallows! Like being wreathed in beauty and grace, just for a moment. So glad that you have this small but mighty joy in your life, obi1.
posted by MonkeyToes at 7:59 PM on June 26, 2018 [3 favorites]

1. I've started boxing again. i'm getting back in shape and carrying around more power in my hands;
2. i'm playing lots of Necromunda, which is a great social and creative activity;
3. My SC2 APM has almost doubled this year;
3. I hit my target for billables in 2018 by mid June, so i'm going to have plenty of resources at my disposal in the latter half of the year to support my spouses new business and some local charities.

it actually seems like there's a positive correlation between my efforts and my successes these days. i'm appreciative for that.
posted by LegallyBread at 9:09 AM on June 27, 2018 [3 favorites]

I just did another interview and I think it went better than last week's.
posted by elsietheeel at 11:41 AM on June 27, 2018 [4 favorites]

Now I've got "One Man Went to Now a Meadow" stuck in my head! ;)
posted by The Underpants Monster at 1:33 PM on June 27, 2018 [1 favorite]

Guys, working out is really helping me with the stress/anxiety/depression. Which is really, really good because I'm shit at taking antidepressants.

Also, it turns out that using my inhaler before exercising helps with the asthma, who knew.

I spent years half thinking that my exercise induced asthma wasn't 'real' because when I went to a GP they just sort of shrugged and gave me a prescription for an inhaler and it's not like I'll die without it and then spent years wondering why every cold I had lasted months and made me feel like I was dying and not taking it before doing things that weren't 'real' exercise like hiking and it wasn't as bad when I was cycling so I wouldn't take it then, so like letting myself take medicine and feel better is a new thing.
posted by dinty_moore at 7:45 PM on June 27, 2018 [6 favorites]

Well, they're already calling my references, so here's hoping they like what they hear. However, the problem with doing tons of interviews at once is that I have no idea which job is calling. I hope it's the one where I work for the man in a fancy uniform.
posted by elsietheeel at 8:25 AM on June 28, 2018 [6 favorites]

I guess they liked it. The man in the fancy uniform extended a job offer and I accepted. Holy cow.
posted by elsietheeel at 10:26 AM on June 29, 2018 [17 favorites]

The puppy has landed. I repeat, the puppy has landed (!!!)
posted by Mchelly at 11:55 AM on June 29, 2018 [9 favorites]

posted by fluffy battle kitten at 11:56 AM on June 29, 2018

posted by lazuli at 12:14 PM on June 29, 2018 [1 favorite]

holy dingdang look at that little pupper
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:05 PM on June 29, 2018 [2 favorites]

Workouts and puppies and jobs, oh, my!

That is one grade-a dogger there. Is he part Chow?
posted by The Underpants Monster at 1:21 PM on June 29, 2018 [1 favorite]

Dear god that puppy head tilt. /melts
posted by Celsius1414 at 1:45 PM on June 29, 2018


From angry sky god too 🌞 but mostly puppy head tilt 🐶
posted by Celsius1414 at 1:45 PM on June 29, 2018

I can't form coherent sentences now because puppypuppy o puppypuppy
posted by Namlit at 2:11 PM on June 29, 2018

She's a keeshond. Her name is Piper. Also I'm sorry to threadsit, but this.
posted by Mchelly at 2:32 PM on June 29, 2018 [4 favorites]

Oh, threadsit away! I haven't known very many Keeshond, but I gotta say, the ones I have known have had some of the most lovely, polite, beautifully trained demeanors of any of the dogs I've met. Obviously work goes into that, but I've always had an impression of them as beautiful temperaments inside a cheerful layer of floof.

I grew up with Jack Russell Terriers, so the family across the street with the Keeshond who would heel perfectly on walks without any need for a leash just blew my mind as a kid.
posted by sciatrix at 3:11 PM on June 29, 2018 [1 favorite]

posted by loquacious at 3:13 PM on June 29, 2018 [2 favorites]

posted by The Underpants Monster at 3:17 PM on June 29, 2018

And congrats Elsie!!!
posted by Mchelly at 3:21 PM on June 29, 2018 [2 favorites]

My work update: I fired myself for 2-3 days. I realized last week I've basically been on and going non stop for 2+ months without any kind of actual day off doing jack diddly squat like I like to do, so I'm doing that and recharging my batteries.

Yesterday I slept in till 2, visited and lounged on several beaches, ran into our town's de facto and rather wild grandma where we killed a whole bottle of wine (uh, each) and talked for a few hours, then ended up at a house party till dawn that was really good, and then got to do my walk/bus ride of shame home in the unblinking daylight for the first time in months.

Tonight is a live hardware/software dance show from some of my friends, so right now I'm just lounging about, cat napping and eating pickles and avocados until it's time to go boogie.

This time I'm packing light, as the last few times I saw them play I was doing photo/video shooting for them, so this time it's just going to me and my nice shoes actually being there for the show and maybe even (gasp!) dancing.
posted by loquacious at 3:24 PM on June 29, 2018 [3 favorites]

The last episode of the last series of The Bridge (Danish/Swedish original) finished earlier this evening. Not giving spoilers here. It was ... emotional. Very. The first time I think I've applauded a TV program - especially the lead actress - since The Wire over a decade ago, now.

And, heck, Sofia Helin can act (interview with Andrew Marr). Guess have got the opening credits and a few clips on YouTube until picking up the four season box set next week.

A few of the lines of dialog were also coincidentally weirdly very personal to me in this final episode, so am off for a long walk and to look at the lovely moon in the southern sky and have a think about them.
posted by Wordshore at 4:21 PM on June 29, 2018 [3 favorites]

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