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ursulav

Talking to Socks

Back from tour! Not dead! About to head out to MileHiCon in Denver!

I have achieved nothing creatively since getting home, other than plugging away on hamster illos. Handed the Snow Queen book in to my editor, shooting for a February release. My brain isn't sure what to work on next. I have any number of half-done projects I could pick up and work on, but nothing is really grabbing me about the head and shoulders, and I have most of a year anyway.

I've been writing a lot of short stories lately. (Well, a lot for ME.) There will be two (maybe three?) out in November--I'll link when it happens--and another in January and another in short order after that.

Lacking inspiration, I cleaned the closet instead. Read the KonMari book on decluttering, which is very...animist. (Author spent a lot of time working at a Shinto shrine, I hear, which may account for that.) There's a lot written about it and joy and whatnot, but the part I fixated on was that you're supposed to thank the things you get rid of, partly out of respect, partly because this will get you over the weird emotional attachment most of us have to Stuff. Can't get rid of a thing you don't wear because you paid a lot of money for it? Thank it for its help. Then it's easier. (It is, too. Go figure.)

I am amused by the various angsty responses to this I have read, which range from "No way am I talking to my socks!" to some frankly weird radical Christian stuff that thanking your socks is definitely Wrong and possibly Satanic and you should say a prayer to the Holy Spirit instead for giving you socks. (I admit, my Catholicism is pretty lapsed, but I think God is probably a bit more concerned that we not be awful to each other than with briefly anthropomorphizing one's socks as one prepares to send them to Goodwill. Honestly, were I running the universe, I'd be like "Whatever gets you to give the socks to the less fortunate, DO THAT." But there's a reason they don't let me run the universe. Several. Not least that we would be hip-deep in axolotls. Well, anyway, the theology seems a little muddled to me. The important thing is that everybody's got socks going into winter.)

Regardless, whichever way you come at it, the chief source of resistance seems to be in talking to one's sock drawer. Mostly it seems to be that you will look silly doing it.

Then there's me. I read this book and went "Lord, I talk to my socks already! Finally, a book for me!" and spent six hours thanking my excess socks, shoes, light jackets, etc, and dragged four large garbage bags off to the thrift store. I have always been a bit of an animist by nature, and I gave up on not looking silly in private many many years ago. (Who am I trying to impress? I know myself too well to believe in my own dignity. I have tripped on perfectly flat ground and choked on my own saliva too many times.)

There is also a whole lot about the proper way to fold one's clothes so that they will be happy. It is also remarkably space efficient. The closet is cleaner than it has been in eons. I have no idea if I will continue the whole process, but I am surprisingly willing to believe that properly folded socks and underwear can make me happier in some small fashion.

Also, not to bury the lead here, but we met a dog at an adoption event that may be The Dog. Having a home visit after we get back from the con. English Coonhound mix who was dumped, probably for having no hunting instincts whatsoever. Beautiful dog, one of the ones who leeeeeans into you and looks up with a very hopeful expression, good with cats.

"Are you hound people?" asked the rescue people.

"Well," I said. "Better the devil you know."

They laughed. It was rueful laughter, with a slightly hysterical edge, but there it was. (We know all the hound problems and can deal with them. But never another beagle. There are limits.)


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I thank Google Maps after it has navigated me successfully to a place I haven't been before. Maybe it's just because it's voiced, but I feel a bit strange if I don't.

I talk to all of my GPS units. The lady is named Alice, because she always gives me very good advice and I very seldom follow it. I'll correct her, too, even when I have passengers. "No, Alice, I want to go this way. Thanks, though."

I have gotten some really weird looks for that.

Mine are all named Maggie. For Magellan. The good news is that it's contagious and now my whole family does it too.

Mine is Roger - because he barks orders at me and it is all very military and "Roger that!"

Ours is named Joyce Kilmer, because we live near Joyce Kilmer Ave, and when we googled who Joyce Kilmer was, we found out he was the guy who wrote "I think that I shall never see/ a poem at lively as a tree" and for some reason we found that hilarious. Sometimes we rephrase his directions to fit that poem: "I think that I shall be bereft/ if at this light you don't turn left."

We call ours Nurvi - because my husband thinks it's stupid that Garmin decided to throw in an umlaut for aesthetics. :P

Mine too! All GPS units are Alice in my family. It throws people. Very fun.

My fathers is Gertrude. I don't know why, as this is also the name of our household huntsman spiders (we get lots. Australian).

The house I grew up in had an apple tree. There was always at least one squirrel who made its home in said apple tree. The squirrel's official name was Mildred, regardless of gender.

Heh, yeah! I admit that I apologize to the GPS sometimes when I can't or don't want to take its suggested route, and I tend to imagine it being a little confused as to why its dumb humans can't follow directions.

We call our GPS Cassie, short for Cassandra. She's always telling us to take a different route because of traffic doom but we never listen to her and then she turns out to be right.

People I drive with reassure the navigation program if we go off-course. "Turn left at Sheridan Avenue." "Oh, there's the Target, didn't we need X?" "Turn left at Sheridan Avenue." "No, we're going to Target." "In 500 feet, make a U turn." "It's okay, honey, we're just going to Target. You can tell us how to get home later."

P.

Yeah, both I and my spouse do that too. "We'll get back on the road in a minute, we just needed some gas."

I found out on a trip to Vermont that the sat nav in my Nissan had a six hour trip plotted while my I Phone had a four and a half hour trip plotted. I spent the rest of the drive, by myself, mocking the Nissan.

Nissan "In 1000 feet turn left"
I phone "in 800 feet turn right"
Me "Hah! I refuse to listen to you, Nissan! My phone is smarter then you!"

On the way home the routes matched exactly. W. T. F.

My Garmin, Kerensky (named for the navigator in Red Shirts) has an unhealthy fascination with boats. No matter what the journey, s/he'll try to put us on a ferryboat. I've been directed to every little ferry landing on the Willamette River (where more often than not, the boat runs on alternate Wednesdays). It's gotten to whenever I go anywhere northwest of I-5, I keep Google maps running backup on my phone to make sure I'm not driving off a dock again.

Oddly enough, when they do give the same directions, they do it at different intervals. In .6 miles turn... In .5 miles turn... In .3 miles... .2 miles... It's like kids arguing.

Edited at 2015-10-24 02:01 am (UTC)

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