A Week in the Life: August 20, 2022

I’ve been writing this post on and off all day as I do other things and at this point I’m not sure I have much coherent to say. This evening I’ve been packing for another trip to Redlands to help my mom a little bit. She had her mastectomy on Monday, but is doing pretty well already. I’m tagging out my sister to keep my mom company while she recuperates.


Here are some things I’ve recently read, watched, or bought.

Books and Other Words

  • Bodies on the Line: At the Front Lines of the Fight to Protect Abortion in America by Lauren Rankin. This is a very interesting account of the early days of clinic escorts through the present state of abortion rights and the role escorts play now. I did not realize how vehement the anti-abortion protests were in the early days of abortion, to the point that clinic defenders would show up before dawn and create human chains to safeguard the clinic entrance.
  • The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. This is a re-imagining of the Island of Doctor Moreau told from the perspective of his daughter. I enjoy Moreno-Garcia’s books a lot and this was no exception. I like how she situates the story in 19th century Mexico to give it a new perspective.
  • A Mirror Mended by Alix E. Harrow. This is a sequel to A Spindle Splintered and, for both books, I thought they were just okay. I like her other work more (like The Once and Future Witches), but these books are fun reads.

Meanwhile, on the internet:

  • California could transform how fast food workers are treated via Vox. There’s a bill in the California legislature that would improve working standards for fast food workers. Given how many fast food jobs there are, this could be a big step for labor rights in the state.
  • Twitter is becoming a lost city via The Hypothesis. The social media landscape is changing. As much as I love to hate twitter, I also just love twitter, so this is a bummer. I hope we get better social media in the next go-round.
  • How Gen Z teens accidentally blew up the myth of the lazy millennial via The Washington Post. This article is good although this subject makes me completely insane. The youth of today observed that it’s very easy to find a job right now and companies are more willing to hire inexperienced teens to do jobs. This is in contrast to when I was a teenager, and no one wanted to bother hiring young people because there was a glut of employees. Truly shocking news!!

TV and Music

I’ve been watching a lot of TV lately while I work on my knitting. I started re-watching Steven Universe with my mom. Other than that, my friend Lito suggested I might enjoy the new season of So You Think You Can Dance and, in fact, I did. Though I do find it funny to hear so many young 20-somethings talking about how being on the show is a “lifelong dream.” Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but being on a reality competition show is kind of a bummer as dreams go.

Rampant Consumerism

I bought a fancy new laptop! I wasn’t really planning on it, but since I was traveling to help my mom a couple weeks ago and will be traveling more, I wanted to have a computer I could use for all my computering activities while out and about. I also realized I could set it up in my office while doing my Spanish and Icelandic classes, which is much nicer for me because my PC and Kirk’s are so close to each other.

I also spent a ton of money on new glasses again! Why even have insurance? I started wearing neurolens glasses last year to take the edge of my binocular vision dysfunction. Insurance doesn’t cover the lenses at all and they cost $600. This is to say nothing of the frames.

Making Things and Doing stuff

Program for a play called Proclivity for Kiting held up so you can see the set in the background
Proclivity for Kiting

I saw a hilarious play called Proclivity for Kiting with my friend Abby. It’s been really fun to go to some plays and ballet performances with friends in the last year. I was into drama and performing arts in high school, although I wasn’t too serious about it, I did like going to shows. I have enjoyed participating in culture again (instead of all my free weekends on roller derby business) (not that there’s anything wrong with roller derby, but variety is nice).


I finally got the scores from the Spanish exam (the Diploma of Spanish as a foreign language, aka DELE, at the C1 level) I took in May. I passed! I’m relieved! I am not sure what I would have done if I didn’t pass because I don’t know if I’d have the strength to take the test again. I am very glad I passed but a little disappointed that I didn’t score all that well. I did great on reading, respectably in listening, and kind of limped along in the writing and speaking. Those are definitely the harder skills but I think my writing is normally better than what this score shows. However, it doesn’t really matter because I passed the test and it never expires. I won’t have to think about this again unless I want to go super hard mode and take the C2 test, the top-level exam, at some point.

a rubric showing the results of the DELE exam broken down by category and the overall score of "APTO" (passed)
DELE scores

Knitting and Crafts

a pair of handknit socks with a varigated purple yarn as the main color and a creamy color on the cuff and toe. There's a small cable pattern running along the side of the sock.
Hazelnut socks

I finished these socks a few weeks ago and realized I hadn’t shared them on the blog yet (thanks to my intermittent blogging schedule lately). This pattern is called hazelnut socks and I think they look really cool!

I’ve also been knitting furiously to finish a big, chunky sweater I want to be able to wear when we go to Iceland next month. I feel like summer is a good time to work on my knitting though because outside is disgusting.

Kitchen Witchery

a bowl of corn soup, red-orange oil diffusing across the surface
corn soup with chili oil

I haven’t been cooking a whole lot partly because it’s hot and partly just for low energy. I did, however, try a new recipe from the cookbook Ruffage (sister to another cookbook I enjoy, Grist). I made a corn soup with chili oil that came out quite good. I’m looking forward to trying more of the recipes from the book.

Cat Therapy

Finally, here are some cat photos for your nerves.

a photo taken through shutter slats showing a small tabby cat relaxing on a paving stone in our front yard, tucked away behind a bush
neighborhood visitor

We have had a neighborhood cat visiting our house lately. She’s (I think it’s a she) been lurking in our front yard and hanging out by the door. She approached Kirk last week and I ran into her while checking the mail a few days ago. She was eager for some affection. After I pet her, she settled down in the front yard to observe us from the window. She has a collar, so I know she belongs to someone, but it seems like she might be adopting us all the same.

Meanwhile Huey has discovered the joy of sitting on the Fluent Pet buttons. She was sitting on the “pets” button, which kept activating it. Maybe this will help someone learn how to use them on purpose, but it seems unlikely.