Friday, October 30, 2020

A peculiar serenity washed over my fingertips yesterday afternoon. Was it boredom? Exhaustion? Have I simply aligned my innard-parts with the flow of the cosmos at last and settled into the hungerless complacency I’d been seeking my entire life? Was it merely my heart responding to the knowledge that my acupressurist, whom I haven’t seen in more than a decade and whom I thought had packed up his shingle and left for the mountain-tops is back in town and taking patients? Maybe it was the knowledge that I could fill the hours with whatever, because I knew the next season of The Mandalorian was kicking off today. Who knows? There wasn’t much on the menu to celebrate yesterday, so this is all we managed:

National Massage Therapy Awareness Week

A good massage – and here we are talking the ‘therapy’ kind, not the ‘happy ending’ kind – can change a person’s life. Jodie went in for a massage to help with the scads of pain she’d been experiencing lately, and she left feeling magnificent. Downright buzzed, even. She also, as I alluded to in the intro, learned that the acupressure guy I used to see, and who disappeared during the few months when I felt I didn’t need his help, is back in town and back in business. This guy was incredible. There were days I’d sit and talk with him and get literally no acupressure done, and I’d still leave his office feeling cured. The guy works with some crazy voodoo energy and I love it. I plan on calling to book an appointment for next week.

This week should be a week for those of us with health packages through our workplace to look at what we can get out of them. I think Jodie and I get hundreds of dollars to use for massage and most of the time that money simply goes unused. We work for the province though, and this particular government is currently in hostile negotiations with both of our unions so that should be another tip-off that we need to enjoy these benefits while we can.

Even if you don’t currently suffer from any chronic pain (and I’m sure there must be someone out there who doesn’t), just book yourself for a relaxation massage. Or a scalp massage. Fifteen minutes of quality head-rubbin’ and you’ll start to see colours and shapes and whatnot. Unlike physiotherapy, which targets a specific ill, a great massage can simply be a way of treating yourself to feeling awesome. And there’s nothing to feel guilty about when it comes to feeling awesome.

National Hermit Day

Anyone feel like cuing up the laugh track for this one? In a year when most of us have been living the hermit lifestyle, at least to some small extent, yesterday was the day to truly embrace it. Maybe it was the day to figure out what you actually liked about being quarantined in 2020 and doing your damnedest to drag that stuff into next year. This has certainly been on my mind a fair bit lately.

Pictured above is the view that haunts most of my daytime hours. I sit beside this window for over 8 hours of a workday, plus however many hours afterwards I devote to these articles, and to playing video games. I hardly ever leave the house, apart from our weekly doughnut runs, supply runs, and to pick up the occasional meal curb-side. And the funny thing is, I don’t want to. I am happy being a hermit. At least, I’m happy being this particular breed of hermit, one who has a wife and numerous friends he communicates with on his phone.

And that’s really the hermit lifestyle, isn’t it? Forsaking all those people and the technology that binds us? A true celebration of hermit culture would involve shutting off those communications and truly isolating myself. That’s more solitude than I’d like to invite into my life right now. I spend plenty of time up in my brain with the wacky characters who populate the sitcom that is my mental state, and I don’t need to binge that anymore than I already do.

So this view, this is the hermit-ness I want to stick with. I will continue to fight to work from home, since leaving the house seems to tie my insides up in knots lately. Thankfully, all is well and good in this little corner of hermit-dom.

National Cat Day

I confess, I did not solicit my friends on social media for another batch of cat pics, as we’ve done that several times this year already and it was starting to feel like a cop-out. This is the big one though, the official National Cat Day. I mean, there’s nothing official about it, but this is the only day we acknowledge as such. So let’s learn a little bit about the cat.

I know they were revered as near-royalty in Egypt, and that they have been part of humankind’s domestic friends-circle for millennia. I didn’t know that the population of abandoned, stray and feral cats around the world has become such a problem, it has led to the premature extinction of several bird, reptile and mammal species. The South Island Piopio, also known as the New Zealand Thrush, no longer flaps its wings in this mortal realm. The Chatham Rail, a flightless bird also from New Zealand, has seen its demise at the hands of too many domestic cats. More than a million reptiles are killed every day in Australia due to cats, though in all fairness I think everything tries to kill everything else in the wilds of Australia.

Cats are the only domestic pet to whom we dispense recreational drugs and it’s socially okay. I don’t know what cat nip feels like, but it looks to me to be one hell of a trip. Cats will also bring home what they’ve killed to their owners, which I always found to be rather amusing. It’s like they’re saying, “Hey human, your murder skills are sorely lacking. See how it’s done?” Kind of sweet, really.

Cats are more standoffish than dogs, and they do not slobber their attention all over their humans in the same way. Some people prefer that. They want to work for that affection, and they respect a cat’s demeanor as an independent being who is allowed to behave like a right prick when it wants to. Cat people are great people, and I totally get the appeal, despite my greater love for dogs. I’ve known several deeply awesome cats in my day, and I wish them all the best on their unofficial official day.

National Oatmeal Day

I don’t think there’s really much to say here. Jodie had some oatmeal with lunch yesterday, and… that’s really the entire point, isn’t it?

I love oatmeal in cookie form, and I’ll eat the stuff in its breakfast variant, but it doesn’t really inspire passion in me. Jodie adores it though, as evidenced by the delicious sampling that was featured here a couple weeks back. Yesterday’s offering was home-made though… well, home-made out of a bag with water and milk added. We didn’t steel-cut the grain stalks ourselves or anything.

The thing I like about oatmeal is that it lends itself to enhancement so wonderfully. It’s a blank canvas, upon which you can add berries, bananas, cinnamon, brown sugar, chocolate syrup, maraschino cherries, pecans, tomatoes, Skittles, flax-seed, sprinkles, honey, peppercorns, Big League Chew, wombat poop-cubes, or anything you want. Okay, maybe not Big League Chew. Put that stuff aside and chew it afterward.

But it’s a food that can be decorated to the diner’s tastes, and I respect that. I just don’t get excited about it. But it was welcome yesterday, since the calendar told us it must be so. This is the way.

Today we plan on bursting through the doors of the weekend like Cosmo Kramer on a sugar-high. Here’s what we can look forward to:

  • National Frankenstein Friday. I guess this is a pre-Halloween monster party? Neat.
  • National Breadstick Day. If this is some seedy way of making me eat at Olive Garden, it won’t work.
  • National Speak Up For Service Day. Not a day to harass waiters and waitresses. This is for recognizing young people who have helped out in their community.
  • National Candy Corn Day. Let the debates begin!
  • National Publicist Day. I don’t have a publicist, which is probably why I only have about three fans (hi, Mom!)
  • National Checklist Day. I’ll make a checklist and hammer through it.
  • National Text Your Ex Day. Or… don’t!
  • Haunted Refrigerator Night. Great. Here I was hoping for a fun weekend, and now I have to contend with Zuul.
  • Buy A Doughnut Day. We will celebrate this one a day late, but damn! I’m glad this exists!
  • Mischief Night. Nah, I’m not the mischief type. I’m more into felonies.
  • Create a Great Funeral Day. Fun?
  • National Bandana Day. Of course it is. Liberty, our #3 canine research assistant, will field this one.
  • Sugar Addiction Awareness Day. Yep, I’m aware. NOW GIVE ME MY DAMN CANDY!!!!
  • World Lemur Day. Cool creatures; I’m glad they get a day.

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