doctrine of signatures

Dear Internet,
It’s late Saturday evening closing in on early Sunday morning and as of Thursday (the day, not the dog) I’m now 0/2 on the job front. Connecticut let me know this past week they were moving forward with another candidate and surprisingly? I was okay with it. Truly. Disappointed? Absolutely but right now this is turning out to be a good thing™ for a variety of reasons. Honestly.
And for now? On ward and upward. I’ve pulled out all my old job haunt websites, found 10 jobs near immediately to apply for and will work on those applications this week. I’ve got linux server admin to learn, websites to redesign, kickstarting my librarian website, and enough things to do to last someone a life time.
I am the queen of moving forward. I’m also tenacious. I’m very tenacious, sometimes scarily so.


Discovered recently a Kickstarter package was sent to my old address in Connecticut when I swore I had updated everything to the L-Ville address. 95% sure I had updated Kickstarter. 95%.
The 5% was enough to prove me wrong.
I contacted TheBassist about the package that was delivered to him in early December, not expecting much of a response as I have not heard a peep from him in three months. I don’t stalk him on the facebooks, the mutual friends and I are on collegial terms. It’s life. You break up, you mourn, and you move on.
As the days blended into another, I resolved to accept the package was a lost cause. I wasn’t terribly worried, really, as I have a digital copy of the book. It would have been nice to have the physical media but if not? It’s okay.
A week later he got in touch to let me know the package had been shipped and here was the cost (I offered to pay for postage). I was a bit apprehensive in regards to the thank you card I sent his family was in the package — and I asked. He responded absolutely not. I was thrilled to hear it had been opened, they knew of my gratitude, and it laid with the rest of the holiday cards in their kitchen.
This was a relief. His family are great people, how the last year went down was of no fault of their own, and I wanted to make sure they knew my gratitude and thankfulness for their kindness, hospitality, and generosity.
Truth be told, I’m aghast at my behaviour in the last year — especially in accordance with his family. If I were me now meeting me of the then, I would be appalled that someone was so — foolish? Careless? Something. I’m being too hard on myself, and as I well know, but as someone whose so fucking self-aware (as told to me by my current (and past) shrinks, TheExHusband, and close friends), it bears thinking about. If I were in that same situation now as I was then, I would be too proud to accept their kindness.
(Pride? Not sure how I would describe the feeling other than that’s the closest approximation I can give. I can’t help but think if the domino effect had not happened, I’d be in a wholly different frame and mired life of mine. As I mentioned to someone recently, it was around late 2013 when I lamented how stale my life had become and I only needed some kind of excitement to get it remotely interesting. Last time I ever say that again, I must point out.)
I waited for the box with much trepidation. I had zero idea what he would put in it. I admit I worked myself up in a near froth about the whole thing but by mid-week I was back in control of my emotions. I have a TheBassist box started (things that are of/remind of him) and agreed with myself whatever was in the box winging its way to me was to painful to view/use would go immediately into TheBassist box to be stored indefinitely.
He said the box was arriving on Saturday and I waited as the morning slowly made its way towards the afternoon. (Rip the bandaid off and all that rot.) I checked the mail around noon and nothing had arrived but 15-30 minutes later, I was awash of impending dread. I knew the box had arrived and sure enough, there it was. Almost taunting me.
(Yes, I am being overly dramatic.)
I slit the butcher paper and tape, slit the tape securing the box, pull out the plastic air bags, and there was my stuff. Not all of it, some of it. My favorite JoyDiv shirt I left for him, the last love letter I gave him, a copy of THE PLAN I had sketched out in December 2014 and was pinned to the bulletin board in his room. My personal coffee cup (that looked used?). Some random knick knacks I used to give my personality in his bedroom. The package and mail that had not been passed on to me.
(I can still recall the location of the shirt and the letter I left on his pillow before I left that early September morning. Time moved so quickly, I realized the last time I was intimate with anyone was with him and I have no plans to be intimate with anyone else for a very long time. (See: hot mess. See: swearing off relationships for at least a year.))
It was a strange, sad, and depressing affair, those items.
I refused to let myself read too much into the box — it’s just stuff after all. In my paper journal I wrote I would be terribly upset if he sent back the JoyDiv shirt, and here was the shirt, rolled up neatly, snuggling against the cardboard side. Here I am, heart broken, but not terribly surprised, not in hysterics, not really anything.
(I’ve prepared myself to accept he may send further boxes along with other things and into TheBassist box they will go.)
I’ve been ruminating on the choice of things he sent. I would have been gobsmacked if he sent along the Grand Rapids shirt I gave him all that time ago. The other love letters. The silly signs. The random gifts (Pops! Toys and other things).
I put the things he sent into my TheBassist box. The coffee cup is getting washed and it too will find its new home. The mail was sorted and the junk mail (most of the mail packed) was recycled. The unpacking, the sorting, and the questioning was over in less than five minutes.
Lunch was beckoning. I closed the front door, turned the lock, and that, as they say, was that.


You may have heard, Alan Rickman died this week, and like his cancer predecessors (Lemmy from Motorhead, David Bowie), the world has been mourning. It’s been a very good week for DEATH on all accounts and for various reasons.
I’ve been thinking about what tattoo #18 will be when I get some cash to get fresh ink. I knew I wanted it to be text of some kind, picking a phrase you absolutely love to carry on with you always is hard work.
I think I have found the answer.
Those of us who are Harry Potter fans remember all too well (and cried) when Dumbledore is gently surprised of Snape’s still in love with Lily Potter after all those years:
snape-always
And this will be tattoo #18, more than likely around my right wrist / forearm.
“After all this time?”
“Always,” said Snape.
xoxo,
Lisa
P.S. Krazy Kate tisked me into agreeing when the box arrived to not contact TheBassist to let him know the eagle had landed. Don’t hand over power, etc. I coughed up the excuse I needed to contact him: Mail from the Connecticut institution had not made its way to me yet even though they had my updated address. Could you please forward the mail on? Thank you. I also thanked him for the box, but I had to make a correction. Several of his friends informed me when TheBassist made his year end review on the facebooks, he had a line that went along the lines of, “And I broke up with the girl who loved me.” That wording has been plaguing me for months — it’s not past tense, it’s present. So the last line I wrote was, “Correction: It is not ‘a girl who loved me,’ rather it’s, ‘a girl who loves me.’ Always has been and so it should always be.”

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2015, 1999

An Errant Librarian

Dear Internet,

I know. It’s been forever. Let me catch you what’s been going on in roughly in the last 18 months.

  • Due to the new union contract, I decided to leave my last position when the existing contract ended and took a gap year to write a book July 2014
  • My yet unnamed book stalled November 2014
  • I’ve been steadily job hunting since February 2015
  • The #teamharpy case settled out of court March 2015
  • I’ve started selling a pieces to online magazines starting August 2015

Since April 2015, I’ve been applying for loads of jobs, getting a lot of interviews, which lead to getting two offers and having those two offers rescinded. The job hunt continues always.

I currently have one outstanding interview I’m waiting on a response (yay / nay). I also interviewed with another institution during that same time period and gave a presentation as part of the interview process.

That particular institution called me a month later to tell me they were pulling the job and absorbing the duties into the library department with the caveat if that had not happened, I would have landed the job. Honestly? I was relieved.

Yet, always the bridesmaid, never the bride.

These two in-person institution interviews were second step in the job process. Both jobs have a lot going for them but I feel I belong more in the Connecticut position rather than in Kentucky. During the in-person interview, I feel like the Connecticut people are my people. The job is more enticing, with a lot more opportunities.

If I do not land the Connecticut gig, I, as always, have a back up plan a, b, c, d, and e.

  • Plan A: Continue to apply for librarian positions
  • Plan B: in addition to applying for librarian positions, search for other positions that match my skill set
  • Plan C: I am set to join a cohort in in May with Code Louisville, with the intent of segueing into a system administration or developer position
  • Plan D: Get a fourth masters or get a PhD.
  • Plan E: Continue to write doing all of this

And this is where this site comes into play.

The longer the hunt has lasted, the more this site has gotten stale. I definitely needed to refresh the site and provide current content.

I’ve been writing over on my personal blog about the current process of the job hunt and other librarian pursuits, which got me thinking i should not keep lisa.rabey.net as a static site but to make it current and dynamic. Tada!

First, I began with revamping the theme to look more contemporary. I also rearranged the main pages for display the top pages. The current theme is nearly perfect except for a few aesthetic details that need tweaking, other than that, I’m pretty pleased with it.

Second, I started jotting down blog ideas on librarianship, the job hunt, and projects I’m working on relating to all of this. I have OPINIONS about such matters.

Third, I migrated the content from my last position, and previous positions, into this site. I’m also in the process of moving librarian-esque content from my personal blog over here to consolidate the information in one location.

Fourth, I’ve scaled back personal social media links and references with the exception of Twitter. To that end, I removed all social media accounts and with Twitter, I rarely use the service these days and most of it is to retweet something or to comment on someone’s tweet.

That’s pretty much it. The current main content on the site, my resume and so forth, are still going to be prominent but I’ll be updating a lot more in the near future.

Here’s to 2016!

 

 

 

thursday the pug (and other accouterments)

thursday
Dear Internet,
Meet Thursday the pug.
How she came into my possession: after Wednesday died on February 1, 2014, TheExHusband1 made the executive decision not to get another dog for awhile so we could enjoy “time together,” which as most of you know did not pan out. (He now believes if he would have let me get another pug we would still be married. I don’t know how I feel about this statement but I do think maybe my life would have changed significantly if that had happened. )
Since I was hopping across the US for the last year, getting a dog seemed impossible but it was on the list of things to do once I get settled. TEH suggested getting another pug would help my cycling since I would then have something stable in my life. I applied to two local pug rescues, was interviewed by both (and references checked). Within a week of acceptance of one, they contacted me as a 2.5 yo fawn female named Molly who just came into their possession and was available. She’s a pure breed bred to be a show dog candidate or as a breeding dog. She’s cage trained, house trained, and is probably one the most active pugs I’ve ever met. (She will walk a mile before she pees. Hello weight loss.) I’ve renamed her Thursday and in the 48 hours I’ve had her, she’s stolen my heart.2


Other accouterments:
tardishat
I’ve been knitting like a fiend. I finished a scarf, a cowl (of my own design), and the above repeating TARDIS beanie (pattern here) within the space of about a week and a half. I’ve had requests to do the beanie for other people (I’m just charging them for the cost of the yarn), so that’s going to keep me busy for the next few weeks.


USPS and I have been having words about the holiday cards. First they were sent back and USPS demanded another .22 cents to compensate for the unusual size. After sending out those cards, another stack came back with demands the envelopes were too small, then a third stack came back, the ones with the added postage, with the same bitchin’ about the too small envelopes. I found a pattern online for USPS approved envelopes and handmade nearly 40 of them and shipped them out. People have been reporting the cards are coming through just fine this time around, which to be honest thank fuck because I’ve had it up to my knee caps with this USPS business.


I aced, I think, my phone interview with the Connecticut university and I hope to hear from them sometime this week about a second interview if they are following the plan they laid out on recruitment. My in-person interview with the Louisville college is this upcoming week and I’m a titch nervous. I’ve started working on my presentation, which will be 30-45 minutes long, last week which is so unusual for me as I’m typically a wait to the last minute kind of girl.
All appendages crossed something comes out of the two in terms of a job offer.


I’ve been writing in a paper journal these last few weeks rather than updating here. When I’m writing here, as open as people think I am, I self-censor a lot. Mostly I repeat a lot of things over and over in the paper journal which goes back to how I work things out. I try to go through and look at things at every angle and work out the hows, whys, and the possible outcomes. It makes my brain and myself feel better on what has gone down AND I can free write. I finally filled a journal I have been carrying around for the last five years, starting on journal number two. Journal number two was purchased last year to work out who I wanted to be with (TheBassist or TheExHusband) and I decided to keep those pages in as a reminder not everything can be boiled down to black and white. There are always a lot of grays in the world.
It’s also a good reminder sometimes feelings are just that – feelings. It’s not about being bipolar or having some mental deficit but about being human. Sometimes there is joy, sometimes there is heartache, and all of the time you are living.


I’ve been keeping up with my work out mentioned a few weeks ago, with week four starting this week. It’s two minutes at easy walking pace and then the pace is nearly doubled for six minutes resulting in eight minute sets until I hit the two mile mark, five times a week. I’m working up a sweat, which is a very good thing considering I have to work twice as hard to generate even a glisten. I’ve cut out the sugar and reined in the dairy, though I’ve cheated on the dairy because pizza! (Have you had vegan cheese? It’s an abomination unto the good lord.) Due to these changes, I’ve lost seven pounds in the last two weeks. I’ll keep on this until after the holidays and then start with the calorie count.
A post has been started with pictures of me at my heaviest weight (with a side and frontal view) to track how my body looks with every 25 or so lost pounds. TEH was very adamant this was a bad idea for unspecific reasons. When I find posts like this on blogs, I love the inspiration they give for me to want to do better on my exercising and eating habits. Fuck’em.


I’ve started seeing a clinician a few weeks ago and there is currently a kerfuffle with my scripts: I’m covered with insurance instead of a co-pay, I’m getting the full cost of the drugs when I go to pick them up. The pharmacy keeps rejecting the script with the nonsense I’m not active in my insurance (false) and my clinician is not authorized to prescribe in Kentucky (also false). This struggle has been on going for the last two weeks and it’s frustrating as fuck. Thankfully I have/had nearly a month’s script left for me to make it through until this gets settled. I cannot and will not go drug free again.
The clinician and I are having words about Klonopin: He says it’s addictive, rattling off loads of celebrities who have died from Klonopin abuse, and I’ve proven I can handle the script just fine as my current script is from November 2014. I cannot imagine my world without Klonopin though he says he will give me a non-benzo version of an anti-anxiety drug. As of this week, I’ve got him talked into giving me a script of Klonopin in the next few weeks if ONLY THE FUCKING PHARMACY WOULD STOP DICKING AROUND.
The clincian requested blood work from me after my first appointment and the results came back: I scored perfect on thyroid, cholesterol, live and kidney functions, and I’m not pre-diabetic (which continues to shock me since both sides of my family have diabetes going back to the dawn of time). He said he’s never seen anyone with such excellent numbers on anything before.
SUCK IT FAT HATERS.
In other mental health news, I have my first appointment with my therapist on Monday which, thank fuck, I need so much. There is only so much exorcising one can do in digital and print journals. Plus getting a third point of view into my life who is not directly involved will be awesome.
This mental health check-up has prompted me to add contacting the DBSA sometime this week to start attending their regular meetings.


Who knew I had so much to say?
xoxo,
Lisa
1.TEH and I are not back together. There was some concern as I’m crashing at his pad I jumped back into a relationship with him. Have not and no intention to do so. The money I’m borrowing is going to be paid back once I get a job. Pinky swear.
2. If you want to increase your friend likes on any social media site, add cute photos of animals. True facts.

This Week in Lisa-Universe: 2013, 2011, 1998

indefatigable

And I’ve been looking for my truth
Since God was a boy Guy Garvey

Dear Internet,
I’m taking a break from making holiday cards as there is only so many pithy messages one can write before the hand gets tired. The breakfast bar looks as if Michael’s has thrown up glitter and paper everywhere. I’ve received so many responses for the cards I closed down the form because a girl can only make so many damned cards. What is surprising me the most is I have not sliced a finger with the Exacto knife or glued things together that are not paper.
Edit: I’ve made all the damned cards and have loads of extras. If you want a card, go to bit.ly/HolidayCards2015.
I’ve been getting back into crafting again to help quell my brain and the satisfaction having a finished product made by oneself. I started with coloring this summer, moved on to knitting again when I found my knitting supplies. This, of course, meant I had a ton of projects started and no idea now who or what said projects are for. I tore each project back to a ball of yarn, using said yarn to knit myself a long scarf. Nothing fancy, just a garter stitch back and forth. I forgot how to fucking purl, cast on, and cast off. These are all simple stitches and if it were not for kind friends on Facebook and YouTube, L-ville would hear the brunt of my swearing on why I could not do what I had mastered so long ago.
A million and half years ago (2010 –  2012) I ran an Etsy shop, Excessively Diverting. I sold handcrafted holiday bulbs, pins, bookmarks, and other trinket specializing in out of copyright books and authors such as Jane Austen, the Bronte’s, Charles Dickens, and so forth and so on.
The shop was successful but the time & cost could not justify keeping the shop open as the majority of sales came during October, November, and December. When breaking down the wholesale cost of making the items and I was paying myself $0 per hour to keep prices competitive, meant I was barely breaking even. I kept all of the templates and other similar items in a box for said store re-opening sometime in the future, but I don’t even have a permanent place to live so that’s not happening anytime soon.
Back to crafting! I also do cross-stitch, which has been slow going. I started a project of matryoshka doll style Avengers ages ago as gift for someone I now have no idea who for. Captain America and the Hulk were finished before I realized I had fucked up the dimensions. That project is just hanging out in one of my craft boxes for something as I do not want to waste what I have already completed.
Then there is the holiday cards, which I’ve been steadily working on for the last week. I was perusing Etsy, Amazon, and other sites for cards to send this year, as you do, when TheExHusband suggested I make the cards instead. This is marvelous idea as I owned most of the major supplies required and all I needed to purchase was paper and a few colored glitter gel pens to finish the cards. Buying office supplies? Oh twist my arm. I have a large vintage tackle box chock full of pens of all sorts (gel, glitter, fountain), colored art pencils for the coloring, nibs and ink for said fountain pens, highlighters for paper and otherwise, drawing marks, and disposable calligraphy pens. Then there is my notebook collection which has grown so large, I have at least on packing box filled to the brim.
One could say I have a fetish for office supplies.


It’s been a couple of days since I started this entry, not finishing it as I didn’t really haven’t the heart. TheSads are again attacking, which probably amounts for and while TEH has been great on cheerleading me on to not dwell, but when you hurt, everything hurts: brain, body, emotions, feelings. Every change in inflection from whoever sends a cavalcade of feels from my brain to my toes.
It’s in that particular space I don’t want to be touched or spoken to. I want to do my thing (crafting, reading, watching TV, whatever) because I don’t have to think when I do these things. This is where I can not worry about my actions, my words, my being intrusive to someone else. It’s where the crying jags come, less frequently now but still appear nevertheless.
The non-touching part can be problematic when you’re around people who simply care about you and want you to feel better.
A friend on the Facebooks shared a mantra, of sorts,
momentofsuffering-web
Which has been a gods-send for me to remember that TheSads are a part of life, are not permanent and will leave at some point.


Yet a couple more days have passed since the above update. TheSads lasted all of one day, where I soaked TheExHusband’s shirt with tears. The following day I was feeling slightly right as rain and the day after that only got better.
For about a week I’ve been walking 17 minute miles on the treadmill since I wrote the above and the endorphin high has been awesome at keeping sad feelings at bay. I get up in the morning, throw on my workout clothes, eat breakfast, and head down to the in-house gym with a bottle of water and workout for about 40 minutes. The workout is two minutes to warm up, walk two miles at 17 minutes a mile and then cool down. With my Spotify “get fit” mix in my ears, the time passes quickly.
I haven’t done yoga since we’ve returned back to Louisville and while one could point out I was being lazy, I will retort there was no space in the condo for me to lay my yoga mat down. True facts.
The lack of space has much to do with my stuff taking up all the available space. Over the past weekend we moved all of the boxes down to TheExHusband’s storage unit and now the condo looks huge. After some furniture shifting, there is now space for my yoga mat and the condo doesn’t seem as claustrophobic as it once was. I joked to TheExHusband that as we’ve shifted all of my things into the storage, I will now get a job.
You can bet on it.


Speaking of such, my Louisville job interview went really well as they are bringing me in for a two day in-person interview in a few weeks. My Connecticut interview, via Skype, is tomorrow. I’m nervous but I feel pretty confident about both situations. I need to get a mutha-fucking job. Full stop. I’m doing research on both positions and living in both locations. If by some grace of the gods I get two offers, it’s going to be a really hard call. The bennies for both are nearly identical but the pay is wildly disparate: $20K between the two at their minimum pay rate. Taking into account the cost of living for both cities, the Connecticut job will allow me to pay down my $20K credit card debt that much sooner. (Which is crazy to think about when the cost of living is a bit on the high side.)
You might be thinking, “Okay. Get through the damned interviews first” and I get that. I do. But I have to think about these things so I’m not making half-assed jumps for one over the other. Both positions are awesome and I can do a lot of good at both institutions, so if I come to this crossroads, I’ve got a lot to think about.
It should go without saying if only one position offers me the job, that is the one I’m taking. A girl cannot be picky.
If neither offer me a position, I’m starting the search again in January when the academic job search reopens.
It should be no surprise I’m exhausted from the amount of job hunting I’ve done over the last 11 months. But it will get better soon, this I do know.


One of the last things I said to TheBassist before the break-up was I’m emotionally exhausted and that is still true. The idea of dating right now makes me nauseous and compounded with reading OkStupid, just ugh. (I would implore you to not read OkStupid for the simple fact it will depress you on the state of humanity.)
I’ve resigned for not dating for year but I will be open to finding new friends in the area I’m living in permanently. In Louisville it would be super awesome to go out with other people not TheExHusband and it would be super cool to meet new people on the East Coast. Friends are good. Dick pics are not.
I dragged TheExHusband out to a social event last week and that went…not so well. It was run by one of the larger social groups in Louisville and the crowd was mainly yuppies and other ilk; not my scene at all. TheExHusband and I met a few people, mainly creeper guys who were there to pick up women and “get free shit” (as told to us by one such individual). I was feeling anti-social, part of TheSads, and TheExHusband was amazed he was the one making introductions rather than myself. I’m a pretty outgoing person when I need to be but I just wasn’t feeling the vibe of this particular group of people. TheExHusband mused we need to find our own people, geeks and such, and there are socials for them so that will be on our agenda in the upcoming weeks.


I’m leaving the house on a daily basis, I’ve cut sugar out of my diet and eating as little dairy I can get away with, I’m exercising, and meditating (131 days in a row and counting), — you know, all the things that I need to live a life and that I should be doing anyway. But I loathe to talk about ThePlan, in this space, right now because I always have good intentions and then they peter out. I want to make these changes permanent — and I think this time they are sticking. I don’t feel rushed about doing these things, I just do them. I may not be talking about such matters in-depth as I am wont to do but I will at least give some kind of update every now and then
A big part of my feeling better will be when I get a damned job. That’s a certainty that cannot be denied. When that happens, everything else will fall into place.


Finally, it is a mere 209 days to Lisa-mas.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2014, 2013, 1998

hapax legomenon

Dear Internet,
I’m procrastinating terribly. I have to finish (well, to be truthful, start) my homework for How Writers Write Fiction 2015, I have a review to write for Nerd Underground, I have a few reviews I need to get up for No Flying, No Tights.  PLUS! I have to possibly do some homework for a coding project I’ve been working on (waiting to find out if I’m in the group needing to complete this or not), prep for NaNoWriMo, Plus look for jobs, do yoga1, shower, and god knows what else I need to do today.
It doesn’t help I didn’t wake up until nearly 13:00.
My sleep has been off kilter these last two weeks and it shouldn’t come as any big surprise. I go to bed at a reasonable hour but getting up seems awful and terrible. I want to cozy down with Teddy2 and sleep the day away. But I get up eventually and do my things.
But today I procrastinate.


Monday I received a phone call from a local university if my references check out, they will be scheduling a phone interview. An email showed up today with the available times. I whooped and hollered about said email. I’ll be back in Louisville sometime this weekend and fingers crossed (and other appendages) I get this gig. The tuition remission is amazing: Up to 18 credit hours a semester. This could mean I could go for a third masters in Art History, or Writing, or something else completely. I can get a third bachelors in Italian or French. I am salivating at the thought.
Obviously, I need another degree.
Leaving my last position was of my own making, which isn’t really a determent on how I feel about the last 18 months. Really. But if I get this gig, that app would have been 160th CV I’ve sent this year. If I don’t get this gig, I’ll start applying in January when the academic cycle starts again.
I’m more thrilled at the thought of living on my own! Paying my own bills again! Having money to buy things! You know, all the good stuff.


Several of TheBassist’s friends got in touch with me in the last few days and well, it’s been good for my soul to sort things out. Some things were confirmed about what I assumed and made a small tear in my heart. But he has been adamant with them, and with me, I was his one and only and I take small pleasures with that information. I’m not so angry as I thought I should be because as I said, I was also party to this game. I can’t fault him too much, though I have tried.
I said to one of his friends:

I love him and I’ll always be in love with him. But I fell apart (not because of him, but it didn’t help) and I need to gain my whole self back. If he comes back, he does. If he doesn’t, well, he doesn’t. And I’m ok with that.

At the crux of it all will remain true for a very long time.
Meditation and yoga has been helping, which is a big part of the reason I’m not flying around on my broom stick wanting to physically eviscerate him. I feel pretty good actually! Not the, “I will say I’m feeling good and I don’t,” kind but the, “You know life is pretty okay at the moment. This was a temporary set-back and I will recover from it” kind.
What is bothering to me, and I think is worthy to be bothered about, was his direct request to tell him when I disappear from his life (which I took to assume he meant off of Facebook — because you know, it’s my “preferred method of communication”). So I told him. And the way Facebook works, much like texting, you can see if someone read your message or not. He hasn’t. I’ve been banished to the otherworld, much as he did to me before, much as he did to the women pre-me. As I mentioned this in previous posts, I get the radio silence — I’m his “kryptonite.” He often reiterated he could quit a lot of things but he couldn’t quit me. He even alluded and remarked on the break-up call he’s not too bright when it comes to leaving me alone and we very well could pick up future endeavors.
I write to understand, to look for patterns, to soothe my feelings. I will have to accept it is what it is and not anything more. There are a million and one reasons he said what he did (to break it gently, to be cruel). I hope not to continue on this path of naval gazing in regards to him. Not much more can be said or done at this point. I’ve aired my dirty laundry, I’ve done what I can to soothe myself on the past, present, and future.
Plus, I promised Krazy Kate I wouldn’t turn this from a post here or there to a fucking book.
So there’s that.


I’ve started to get excited for the Louisville move. It will be nice to see my things again, have my clothes in drawers and hung up in the closet. To unpack my books, put together my Lego MINI, to have a desk again and not sitting on these hard ass barstools as I’ve been wont to do these last two months. (Two months! Jesus.)
Louisville is becoming a lovely city, everything Grand Rapids is slowly becoming. There are a lot of active groups around town, a great music scene, bourbon, and great food. There is, of course, my requisite Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s (someone has to keep me up to cookie and cocoa swirl cookie butter. Delicious with pretzels).
TheExHusband lives in a condo downtown, which makes getting to a lot of things by foot. He’s around the corner from the soccer stadium, we caught a few games this summer, which also cheers me up. Plus the food. Did I mention the food? One of my favorite breakfast places ever is located on the first floor of his building.
So while I like Louisville but not really love it, it will be a good chance to kickstart my life. Which is more than I could ask for.


NaNoWriMo kicks off on Sunday and I’m going to wholeheartedly do it this year. (Ignore the 13 years, according to my profile, I have tried to “win” and never did.) I’ve been working on my Edwardian mystery during the Writer How To class and I’ve learned quite a bit on writing, structuring, and plotting. The first chapter, or so, sounds loads better than the first draft I started all those months ago. I’ve been plotting, in my head, how I want this story to flow and I think, hopefully, possibly, I can get it kicked off again.


I stretched a truth, more about TheBassist:
He attempted to argue, and I disagreed, he’s not a factor in my life. He’s holding me back. But knowing him, as I know him, if he check’s up on me, and see’s everything is going swell in my new locale, it will cement his desire not to contact me. He would be a determent to my life, he’d think, and I vehemently disagree on, even with his bad faults I swung around like a bat, there is so much he has given me; he IS a part of my life and I’d want him to share my success with him and hopefully we could work out the downsides.
Wishful thinking.
xoxo,
lisa
P.S. 1. Yoga circuit is as follows: Circuit 1: Greeting post, mountain pose (30 seconds each, rotated through 3 reps). Circuit 2: Superman, cobra, hare, diamond, and dancing shiva poses (15 seconds each, rotate through until completed 3 reps). Circuit 3: Shoulder/pec stretch (30 seconds each, 3 reps) and calf stretches, each leg, 30 seconds each, 3 reps.
2. Yes, I am a 43 year old woman who sleeps with her 40 year old teddy.

P.P.S. Don’t want near daily emails or can’t make it here everyday but want to keep up with what’s going in my world? Subscribe to A Most Unreliable Narrator, a monthly-ish newsletter roundup of what’s happening. Bonus! Comes with GIFs!

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2013, 1998

things I have written

Dear Internet,
It’s been a busy week over here in Lisa-Universe. For starters, the written word pieces I mentioned a few weeks ago, published. The first piece, “How To Divorce Your Mother In Three Easy Steps,” is available over at WittyBitches.com. The piece proved to be pretty popular.

Preen.
Preen.

That was pretty exciting.
The second piece published, for No Flying, No Tights, is a review of a new manga series, Manga Classics, which specializes in classic books translated into visual prose. My first review, Manga Classics: Emma, is now up! I interviewed the author, Stacy King, yesterday (I’m currently transcribing a 45 minute video call into text. Oi!), which will be published sometime in the next few weeks. The nice thing about doing reviews of this calibre is the publisher is sending on books from the current collection for me to read and review. I adore that this job has a lot of perks.
This, of course, means I got to update my bibliography and resume. I’ve also added a few sample clips that I churned out this week for writing jobs. It’s nice to see published pieces from places that I do not own. This has been, in the writing world, a pretty awesome week.

I’m on the East Coast now and have been for the last few weeks. The whole reason I am here is to go job hunting, which — isn’t happening. I’ve had nary an interview or even a phone call since I’ve been here; it’s incredibly frustrating. I’m forming plans, as I always do, but what I can tell you is I am mentally and emotionally exhausted. While I don’t necessarily feel as if I’m at the end of my rope, I do feel as if I’m running up against walls.
If it were not for the published pieces, I don’t know how I would feel.
In order to keep myself relevant, I’ve been teaching myself to code. I know, I know, I’ve been on the offense in regards to coding not the only thing in the tech world. But as more and more positions I’m interested in start to advertise they want coders of varying degrees, it was time to bit the bullet and get with the program.
I’m constructing my entire education around various coding classes I bought over at Stack Social and Udemy. I’m also looking into Code Academy for additional classes.
The thing that is having me chomping at the bit is where I’m located, there is nay a place for women coders to hang out. Interestingly there is very few social clubs for programmers as a whole. I’m only a short train ride away from NYC and yet this area is a wasteland. I’m working on finding online spaces for women to get together and that has also been slow going.
It’s all a wait and see game, one of which I have grown weary.

MINI watch
In other good news, I took Jeeves in for an alignment this week and the wait was three hours longer than they had quoted me — so the manager gave me a MINI watch. With my MINI car collection (nearly a dozen and growing), my world domination of MINI is coming to fruition.

Mentally? I’m doing – okay. Not 100% great but not down in the dumps either. I’ve long correlated my mania is a tip off of my hormones racing at the beginning of my period but this is one thing I find I cannot 100% control. Hell, even 50% control. My feelings of sadness, anxiety, and loss of overall control have very realistic seeds and I have to keep reminding myself of those things are natural, not disease based, things.
I’m seeing a therapist now and I have signed up with the local Depression Bipolar Support Alliance group, giving me a support system in place. I’m also mediating daily — I’m on a 37 day streak! But I still feel anxious most of the time, I’ve got a new fear of driving, which is apparently not unusual but it makes for interesting dichotomy in regards to the fact I’ve been driving for over 20 years, including several coast to coast trips. Why now? It’s a new thing, for sure, but why and what is what perplexes me.
Therapy better fucking help. I’ve got things to do.
The therapist and I talked about my hyper-sexuality and the coinciding factor I do not get a lot of pleasure out of the sex act itself. She pointed out, with my sexual history, by initiating and fucking someone first, I’m in control (as opposed to previous experiences where my control was taken from me). Once those words tumbled out of her mouth, suddenly everything clicked into place and I sighed a huge sigh of relief. I no longer had to be the goddess of fuck anymore — and that in and of itself is freeing.
xoxo,
Lisa
P.S. Don’t want near daily emails or can’t make it here everyday but want to keep up with what’s going in my world? Subscribe to A Most Unreliable Narrator, a monthly-ish newsletter roundup of what’s happening. Bonus! Comes with GIFs!

This day in Lisa-Universe: 2012, 2010, 2003

I need to be in the town where they know what I’m like and don’t mind

Dear Internet,
It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve done a serious update, thus it’s time to keep everyone abreast of what’s happening in my little world.

First up, I’m moving. Again.
I’ve been holed up in Kentucky these last six weeks, staying with TEH, as I’ve run out of day to day living money.The GR apartment was pre-paid for a year and I received my refund for the remaining six months, but that would only cover monthly expenses sans rent/food so it was time to go. The plans is I would be responsible for paying my bills and TEH would cover food/housing/gas. (We have the weirdest divorce, ever.) One of the conditions of me living here was keeping up daily chores and job hunting, which I’ve been doing with aplomb.
TEH decided to head up to the cabin for a month or so, starting in the first week of August, in which I would fly to CT to stay with TheBassist as I could not take a break from job hunting. Then TEH decided he was going to go up later than planned after which my open return ticket had been purchased. Since we’re now looking at me being out in CT for roughly two months now, I decided to cancel and swap the ticket over to TheBassist, whose flying out here on Sunday with planning on driving to CT that day.
Follow that? Okay good.
Right now my packing is skilled enough that it’s frightening. If you ever need help to pack for a trip or a house, I’m your girl.

Speaking of jobs, as of July 30th I am up to 113 applications from everything to librarianing to content curation and (now) retail (bookstores). I’m also heavily looking for positions as a tech/copywriting/content. No stone unturned and etc.
My interview rate is about one in ten, which is above average. I often get second interviews and then! Rejection. One place rescind an offer 24 hours later after extending said offer exclaiming I did not “show enough interest in the job” though I drove an hour one way for a 30 minute interview. So yep, totally not interested. I was shopping for apartments in Lexington, KY when they called to rescind the offer. Was it because of the case?
Probably.

Speaking of writing, I sold my first writing piece to a web ‘zine and I’m super excited about it (natch). I cannot publish the piece here nor do I know when it’s going to be published, but I can tell you the title is, “How I Divorced My Mother in Three Easy Steps.” It is non-fiction and clocks in at about 1800 words before editing. My beta-readers said, “It’s impossibly dark.”, so that should give you an idea of the atmosphere of the content. As always, I keep it real.
In other writing news, I’m doing reviews for No Flying No Tights, mainly in adult graphic novels. I assumed I had spread the word for this but apparently not! This is not a paid gig, but it will help with my bibliography (or clips) page. I’m super excited about this possibility.

Flipping back to the job thread, I am using Udemy.com to build my own education, concentrating on front end web development, content, and SEO to extend my skills. TEH and I purchased bundles from them over the years as well as taking advantage of free classes is allowing me to do this on the cheap. I know, I know. I KNOW. I was on the defense war path that coding was not the only technical thing and yet, here we are! I do apologize deeply to those who got tired of that schtick. It’s pretty clear a lot of jobs require some if not all of these for the typical unicorn they are trying to catch, so why not?

Mentally, things have been more or less okay. Last week was awful with the mania where I was hopping off the walls while crying for entire days. The only recourse, at the time, was to drug up on Klonopin and sleep with Ted E. Bear.
Things came to a head when TEH and TheBassist both insisted I up my Lamictal to the last dosage as approved by doctor in Grand Rapids and take myself to the free clinic to talk to someone.
The free clinic in Louisville is designed mainly for the homeless and those on their last hopes. As a walk-in, I was told they could see me when first available slot came open. Four hours later I requested more info to discover the therapists were all at lunch and they closed at 3:30. Would I liked ot make an appointment? Sure, why not. Okay, we can fit you in two weeks. Two weeks? Yes. What if I came back tomorrow? You’ll have to start the waiting process all over again.
(…)
I called six places in Louisville and every single one was booked out for weeks and months. If I was suicidal, which I wasn’t but I was in crisis, I could check myself in at the local emergency room who could throw me in a locked ward for 48-72 hours. THEN I could get help.
(I don’t know if I told you all this but I was stuck on the east coast during a massive blizzard back in January with an appointment with a medicating therapist in GR the following day. I called and canceled and explained why, they said they couldn’t fit me for another five months. This is an emergency I insisted. Doesn’t matter they said. When I finally say said medicating therapist and told her about the run up, she said they had policies in place and times open for just things. It should not have taken me five months to see her.)
Thankfully I had an appointment set in CT JUST IN CASE if I happened to come back that same time, so I’ll be okay in CT. I’m also set up in CT with a local bipolar support group.
I’ve, and others, have said over and over again the state of mental health wouldn’t be this tenuous unless the pain was physical and obvious. It’s frustrating, anxiety inducing, and pointless. But that is a rant for another day.

That’s pretty much it for me at this time and juncture. Sunday is the 12 hour drive day so it might be a few days before I post here again. Happy weekend everyone.
 
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2014, 2014, 2012, 2012, 2008

State of the Lisa Address

Dear Internet,
TSTBEH and TheBassist have been very concerned about my state of well being now that I’m living alone. Others have also expressed concern so it seemed like a good idea to do an update.
I’ve been busy every day with errands since I’ve been here, so I’m getting out of the house. Today is the first day in over a week I don’t have plans or errands to run so I decided that I’m going to couch all day watching Father Brown, and we all know I have a thing for crime solving priests.
I had a meeting with my business accountant on Saturday and he’s suggesting it would be far easier for me to get a co-working space rather than trying to build out a home office (as you’ll see in a moment, there is no space for me to build out a home office). My talking therapist, Dr. P., is encouraging me to not do home workouts but head to the gym. Originally I was going to sign up for yoga at a local place that Bethums have scouted out for me, but I have to go to the Y so I can get walking AND swimming thrown into the mix.
Those two things are on my agenda this week.
Mentally, I’ve been okay. Thursday night I started crying because the enormity of the situation has finally taken its toll. The tears didn’t last long but knowing I was here alone, without two people who care about me the most. I have friends here, close friends, but it’s not the same.
The interesting thing is that I’ve not been getting myself in knots about any of the messes I’ve gotten myself into. And for that, I am grateful.
I saw my GP last week and she’s upped my dosage of Lamictal, so instead of 25mg three times a day, I’m now taking 50mg in the morning and 25mg in the afternoon, and another 25mg in the evening along with 10mg of Abilify. The ability to feel rational and not overwhelmed emotionally has been fabulous. So far, this has been the best bipolar cocktail I’ve ever been on. If this is what “normal” feels like, I’ll take it.
I’ve been on this particular cocktail since November and this is the longest I’ve felt stable. I had some of the cracks starting to show about three weeks ago which signified that the drugs were starting not to work, which is why I went off to see my GP. I have an appointment with a medicating therapist in February to for her to manage my scripts and see about possibly getting on ADHD drugs (again).
Creatively and productively, I’ve been feeling good. When I’m home, I’ve been working on my book(s) almost none stop. I think I’ve calculated I’ve spent 50-60 hours in designing the cover, editing, and more. Working on the print version has taught me a lot about book design and formatting; I have made numerous mistakes getting it just right but instead of getting super frustrated, I kept chugging along. Hence I know the drugs are working.
Last week I had an interview for an entry level IT position for a local corporate company here in GR. This was approved by everyone (TheBassist, TSTBEH, Dr. P.) because it would get me out of the house, interact with humans, and plus make some extra scratch. My budget right now is super tight but this would give me some breathing room.
With my name being dragged in mud due to the lawsuit, in addition to changing my last name, I’m looking at changing careers. It’s been over a decade since I held a pure IT job, so this look like a good entry point and the money isn’t bad.
The first interviewer said this is the first time in his career he’s interviewed a person with a double master’s for the position. No one asked me with my education and background, WHY I applied until it was time to ask questions of the interviewers. Eight candidates are interviewing for three positions.
So the apartment. Here is a tour.

Front of the building.
Front of the building.

The building was built in 1870 and was used as a hospital in the area and pre-dates other hospitals in Grand Rapids. There are five apartments, which are cobbled together from patient rooms. Though my apartment is #2, #10 and #9 are on my doors. The buzzer doesn’t work and I will have to make arrangements for shipping items, but all and all, the front of the building is gorgeous.
newlivingroom-before
Living room from the front door.

newlivingroom-before2
Living room from Kitchen door.

newlivingroom-after
Living room after.

newlivingroom-after2
Living room from the kitchen door.

The apartment is only 600sqft but it’s cozy enough for my needs. All the mouldings, floors, and appointments are original to the house. The transom windows are adorable but the landlord leaves the lights on in the hallway so light is always shining through the living and bed rooms.
The apartment faces north and west, so I don’t get early morning sun. Even when it’s sunny out, I have to keep the lights on at all times.
mantelofminis
Mantel of MINIs. (11 in total.)

Most of the furniture and accoutrements are from Throbbing Manor, what TSTBEH didn’t want or was going to sell to consignment, so it worked out. The couch, bed, and TV were bought specifically for the apartment. When I move out, TSTBEH is going to take some of the furniture (mainly the TV, bed, and possible one or two pieces of furniture) for Throbbing Cabin, which works out for both of us.
Interesting, neither of us miss Throbbing Manor. Nearly four years and we don’t miss it one bit.
newkitchen-before
New kitchen – before.

newkitchen-after
New kitchen – after.

The kitchen is tiny, there is no getting around that bit. The oven temperature gauge doesn’t work (yes, I know. Go buy a manual one) and the stove is a bit sketchy. Thankfully, I am a grazer which means my meals are simple and not overly complicated. If I need something more substantial, I have instant meals (soups, frozen, packet Indian, etc) at my disposal. I was planning on crockpotting meals and freezing them but I haven’t bought a crockpot yet but that is on the list of things to do.
newbedroom-before
New bedroom – before.

newbedroom-after
Bedroom after.

newbedroom-after2
Bedroom after.

The bedroom is basic and does its job. Teddy enjoys it very much.
viewfrombedroom
View of downtown Grand Rapids from my bedroom window.

I’ve started getting into rituals, which after the last seven months, have been a godsend. I get up in the morning, use the bathroom. Contacts get put in; slippers found and slipped on. I turn the kettle on for tea and refill the humidifier so I don’t strangle myself in my sleep from the dry air. Breakfast is procured and then I check email, Facebook, and Twitter.
I plan the rest of my day, which typically includes appointments and errands. I get dressed and do what I need to do; come home and depant. Then I do the household things and once those are done, work. Work on my writing, work on my books, work on myself.
It’s a quiet life. No drama. After the last seven months, it’s a welcome relief.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2014, 2011

In Case You Missed It: Top Posts for 2014

Dear Internet,
2014 was a banner year with my dog dying, my marriage busting up, finding new love, getting sued for defamation, getting back on the bipolar drugs, and losing my job. But the big question is, what did you favor on my site in 2014. Below is a breakdown of the top posts written and viewed in 2014.

  • About That Job Description In which I reveal that my position at GRCC was announced in January and my decision not to reapply. Add in the Internet getting my back for this line in the posting, “Ability to demonstrate the mental health necessary to safely engage in the librarian discipline as determined by professional standards of practice,” and you now know why I decided to move forward with my career.
  • I am the bitter fat chick who told you “no” In which I reveal an ex-high school boyfriend who kept sending me Facebook messages every couple of years in some fucked up attempt to “win me back” and his responses each time I said “no.”  Also explained my decision to change my name across various social networks only to be forced to change it back on Facebook due to “valid name” concerns.
  • For The Case of Humanity In which I reveal why I will not shut up about my feelings in regards to the $1.25M defamation lawsuit, job hunting, and other unpleasant topics.
  • About my article in American Libraries on libraries, technology, and gender  In which I reveal the background on an article I wrote for American Libraries Magazine, a publication of the American Library Association.
  • Librarian How To: Graphic Novel Collection Development in Academia In which I reveal my process on collection development, promotion, use, social media (and more) of graphic novels in community colleges.
  • into which the cosmos will collapse once again In which I reveal the break up of TSTBEH and myself.
  • #teamharpy tweet clarification In which I reveal that no, we’re not deleting online content in regards to the lawsuit.

Thanks for a wonderful year, dear readers.
xoxo,
Lisa

This Day in Lisa-Universe: 2013, 2012, 2012, 2012, 2002

for the case of humanity

Dear Internet,
When I was out on the east coast for those two months, I applied for jobs. The original plan was I was going to wait until the new year to do so, to give myself some breathing room, but with the selling of the house, divorce then in limbo, and my savings running low, that seemed like a luxury, not a necessity.
I applied for eight jobs. Most were public librarian positions while the rest were academic. Out of the eight, I had two interviews and one hint of an interview that fell through due to funding. The last interview I had, I felt like I was a shoe-in for the job.
For that particular interview, I was asked to give a 15 minute presentation on an emerging technology that I either used and built myself or collaborated with others. I presented on my use of social media to do collection development, teaching, and promotion of graphic novels in academic libraries. I talked about a wide range of tools from using individual services such as Twitter and Pinterest, to my own site, to using LibGuides and other similar software.
My deck was awesome. I practiced before the interview (something I typically do not do) and made sure I looked as regular as humanly possible (nose ring out, hair reasonably coiffed, tattoos covered).
The interview was brilliant and they loved me. We had long discussions about upcoming projects, how I was to either run or contribute to said projects, and they were even more impressed with my topic. I had my deck online for the off site interviewers that I was able to give to them with a specialized bit.ly link. Because yes, I just am that thorough.
They were so excited about me, they started discussing my second interview with the dean and president of the college. The director was coaching me on how to handle myself at the second interview while she walked me to the main library entrance. I posted in FB I was 90% sure I scored the second interview and 85% sure I got the job.
Finally, a break.
Weeks have gone by and I heard nothing from the college. I emailed them over this past weekend and received a note from the administrative assistant that they have already interviewed the three candidates for the second round.
I was not one of the three.
I lamented about this on FB today that I was reasonably sure the reason why I did not get the job was because of my involvement in #teamharpy. A clean search (not logged into any service, using incognito mode) through Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo showed me what I already knew: The first hits were my websites (EPbaB, lisa.rabey.net, and lisarabey.com) and after that, within the next 10 search results, were links to and about the #teamharpy case.
I am, as I speculated months ago, untouchable thanks to this case. I am a risk. I am a liability. I am an unknown that carries massive amount of danger to her name. Hiring me would be like hiring a bomb because you never know when this case will go off and with it, the potential damage and or liability that would affect my then current place of employment.
Some have speculated what I got from the interview committee was nothing more than mouth service at the time of the interview – I get that I do. But as I said, when they are openly talking about your second interview and the director is coaching you about the second interview, it’s hard not to want to believe them. Or start planning for the second interview. Or start thinking about your career future.
It could also be that I really wasn’t genuinely chosen for other reasons. That’s a reasonable suggestion, but, given what transpired during the interview, the interviewers excitement over me, and how well I seemed to fit within their culture, I’m arrogant enough about my skills as a librarian to think this is not necessarily true.
It’s also been suggested that I not discuss any of this publicly – who knows who may be watching. Again, good advice but one I will not heed. Everything here is already public; for their worth, search engines do not lie. But I decided that I’m also not taking their advice for one very simple reason: my humanity.
#teamharpy has been racked over the coals across the comments, blogs, reddits of the internet. I’ve been called everything from unstable to a fat whore to a lot worse. The platiff’s American and Canadian lawyers have taken to disparaging us on Twitter (I have screenshots) before we even set food into a court room. This is intimidation, pure and simple, but it’s also a matter of oppressing our humanity.
I won’t back down.
I refuse to do it. I won’t do it. It is not happening. Even if this means I have to live in my car and my savings are depeleted, I am not letting them take away my dignity or my humanity.
I have every right to factually discuss the case as well as discuss my own emotional involvement of the ramifications of the case. I do not, and will not, shut the fuck up. If I don’t get a job now or in six months or even in a year; even if I have to leave the profession permanently, I am not backing down.
I am scared. I am frightened. I am angry. I am frustrated. But this makes me human. The ability to feel and to rationalize and to process these very stressful things  is what makes me, well, me. Did I not get the job because of #teamharpy? More than likely but I will never really know. Will my job hunt be successful in the future? Again, more than likely but until I get back in the game again, I can only reasonably guess what’s going to happen.
I really, really hope I’m wrong.
xoxo,
Lisa