Tommyjournal  archive    July 2006

Friday  07.28.06

I've been feeling a little better. I spent Wednesday and Thursday climbing up near Lake Tahoe; I'm glad I had enough energy to pull it off. I'm tired today, but not totally wiped out.

You shouldn't leave food in a backpack at the base of the climbs we were at; squirrels will take it. I've had a squirrel operate the zipper of my backpack there. If I leave a pack near those climbs, I leave it open and with nothing edible in it. (Reminds me a little of how a friend of mine would leave the glove box in his car open (with nothing in it) when he parked his car in dicey neighborhoods.)

I had just started up a climb yesterday when I heard my partner on the ground yelling at a squirrel that was dragging away a banana of his. This squirrel was brazen; he came right up to us to take our food, didn't wait until we'd left the ground. My buddy got his banana back, gave the squirrel the part that had tooth marks in it, and kept the rest.

The Tahoe area wasn't getting the monsoony air that Lone Pine is. (A good thing; it would've sucked if a thunderstorm had rolled in while we were in the middle of a long climb.) This has been the monsooniest summer I've seen here.

Friday  07.21.06

A German journalist and blogger recently remarked that SWIFT's logo looks like something out of a bad James Bond film. With its 5-letters-with-dots acronym, it reminds me of the logo from The Man from U.N.C.L.E.:
Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication United Network Command for Law and Enforcement

Thursday  07.20.06

Went to an endodontist for an emergency root canal job today. When he asked how I knew that tooth 29 was the offending one, I said that it was sensitive to percussion. (Couldn't resist.)

I brought a book to read, but they didn't keep me waiting long. Decent music was playing in their office; e.g. David Bowie. The endodontist may be the first doctor I've ever had who was younger than me, which reminded me of the first time I got a ticket from a cop who was younger than me. How irresistible it can be, to see events as milestones.

Monday  07.17.06

I got a call today asking if I'd go climbing at around 5:00. My response: "I don't see why not." It's 4:22 now, and the thermometer reads 103°F. Heh.

Thursday  07.13.06

In case your local news buried the story:

The USA vetoed a UN Security Council resolution today that would have condemned Israel's disproportionate use of force in Gaza (and also called on the Palestinian Authority to stop the violence). The vote: 10 for (Argentina, China, Congo, France, Ghana, Greece, Japan, Russian Federation, Qatar, Tanzania); 4 abstentions (Denmark, Peru, Slovakia, UK); 1 veto (USA).

T cells:  350 > 260. CD4 cells per µL

Wednesday  07.12.06

A good friend is moving out of town; I helped him load boxes, furniture, appliances, and other stuff (including one huge photographic enlarger) into a rented truck this afternoon. Early tomorrow, he heads out on a 350 mile drive to a town in the foothills on the other side of the Sierra Nevada.

Moving can be emotional. I've moved a bunch of times over the years, and it's usually been associated with an opportunity I was excited about. But moving also means leaving friends behind.

I used to like the physical act of moving, I found it satisfying in the way that most forms of physical activity are satisfying. That was back when my body that could take lots of abuse.

I would like to be driving with my friend tomorrow, I'd like to be with him to help unload the truck at the other end. But I'm just not up to it; I'll probably be resting for most of tomorrow, to recover from today.

I lived in the foothills on the other side of the Sierra Nevada, 23 years ago. I like the terrain on the east side better; it's striking not just because of the mountains and the open spaces, but also just by dint of how much it's unlike most of the rest of the planet. As I wrote here a few years ago--
Drive down Lee Vining canyon from Tioga Pass some time, look out over Mono Lake, and tell me it doesn't feel like you've abruptly left the ordinary world behind. (Some people may not like this feeling.)
My friend loves the landscape here too, he knows that where he's going doesn't compare. When I spent six weeks on Long Island this spring, I was struck by how much I missed the environment I'm used to. I kept thinking, where's the sky.

He's leaving mainly for social reasons. All of us who love him totally understand why he's leaving, but we'll miss him.

Monday  07.10.06

I felt lousy for most of last week: fatigued, depressed, annoyed, and so on. I don't know how much was from HIV, how much was from antivirals, how much was from sunspots (just kidding), how much was just dumb luck. But I can say that I feel a little better today. I mean, this was the first day in a while that I felt good enough to want to climb.

I stayed around the house all day so that I wouldn't miss a call back from a doctor's office with test results from blood I had drawn 11 days ago. But did they call? Noooooo.

Am I the only one who's had enough of
fucking YouTube videos on every other blog that you read?

no fucking YouTube I hereby declare Tommyjournal to be a YouTube-free zone. If I want to refer readers to a video clip, I'll do that with a link--not by festooning my page with a 425×350 pixel Flash app that takes a while to load a blurry preview image.

Saturday  07.08.06

Today's weather:
  monsoonal air,
  dark foreboding clouds,

(I just like the word monsoonal.)

My father always said that in the fifth draft he introduced that note of spontaneity for which his writing was well known.
- Peter W. Galbraith

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