Insomnia and Narcolepsy: Since I've been having trouble sleeping--I either toss and turn for hours after going to bed or awake with a start at some ungodly hour like 5 in the morning and then fall soundly asleep just when I should be getting up--I decided a couple of days ago, after a particularly ruthless morning, to take an anti-anxiety pill before bed. Well, I slept alright--straight through my alarm. I slept for nearly 12 hours, in fact.
What woke me up? A fucking JACKHAMMER. Yes, a jackhammer, just outside my bedroom window. The house next door was just vacated and apparently is undergoing quite the renovation. I have no idea how long this will be going on, but I'm not looking forward to it.
Last night, I passed on the sleeping aid and woke up at 5:55 this morning.
"Oldtimer's Disease": When I was a kid, and perhaps when Alzheimer's first started making the rounds in the media, I called it "Oldtimer's Disease," which I suppose was appropriate. I remember my grandmother chuckling when I mentioned it one night, saying, "I'm glad you don't have Oldtimer's Disease, Nana." She was 65 years old when I was born, after all. And she still may not have it, but at 96, it seems she's got something.
I talked to her last night, and she was convinced that while having dialysis yesterday morning, her primary care physician and urologist were both there and decided she didn't have to have dialysis anymore. I called my mother as soon as I got off the phone and told her to check in with her doctors today. As I suspected, there's no way my grandmother could go off dialysis. With her kidneys and heart in the state they're in, she wouldn't last a week.
She imagined the whole thing. Up until this point, her mind has been pretty steady even as her body has declined. But now, her mind is going, too, and fast. While my mother and I have been trying to figure out a way to move her here from Springfield, it seems we might not have the opportunity.
And finally--and understand that this isn't the time to argue with me: not only are you probably wrong, but I'm in a just-ranting-stick-a-knife-in-your-face mood, not a have-calm-rational-dialog-about-our-diff
Fear of Oakland: When urged to come to my side of the Bay, I don't want to hear about how far such-and-such is from BART. Half the time when I'm in the City, I'm with friends who have no qualms about walking twenty minutes from the train station to a destination deep in SoMa or the Mission or, worse, sitting on MUNI for an hour to get to some far-flung locale out near the ocean or by Fisherman's Wharf. So, complaining about the distance from BART to a film screening, a bar, or a house party in Oakland when your ass is perfectly willing to make the same hike in S.F. is irritating.
If you happen to be white and voicing this complaint, I'm going to wonder if this is really not about just your laziness but instead or also about your fear of being in a city with "so many" black people.
And if that is the case, let me break it to you: blackfolks make up just under 13% of the United States of America. Thanks to an economy that favors the white and well-off and decades of gentrification, including racially-motivated "slum" clearing in previously black middle-class areas like the Fillmore District, that "bastion of diversity" called San Francisco has an African-American population of just over 7% and shrinking. You're not living in a city that is representative, so maybe you've grown used to the lack of melanin.
Now, before you start trotting out your anecdotes about the violence you've experienced or been threatened with in that scary city across the Bay, I'm going to counter with my own personal anecdote: I've never been threatened with a knife or gun over here in the bEast, but I was threatened with both in San Francisco, and each time the person holding the weapon was white. I'm also going to say something really fucking obvious: There are bad neighborhoods everywhere, and if you choose to live in or visit them, that's the risk you take. And I say "choose" because most of the people I know who live in "bad" neighborhoods don't actually have to--white, young, single, and childless, they could afford to live somewhere with fewer gunshots and less cultural cachet.
I should also point out that people are mugged, raped, and murdered all over the Bay Area, in all kinds of neighborhoods, and more likely than not, it's people of color who end up in the morgue.