i am

  • Waxed
  • Double vaxxed
  • Full of snacks
  • Fully stacked
  • Listening to Basement Jaxx
  • Overtaxed
  • Aware of nymphomaniacs
  • surviving cutbacks
  • Pretty relaxed
  • A lover of knickknacks
  • Unable to fax
  • a fan of Drax
  • Enjoying my pax
  • A geocentric parallax

Facts.

holding out for a hero

At LEAST until the morning light. Possibly longer.

Things are happening, apparently. BC has completely ramped up the vaccination rollout much faster than we thought possible – as of this typing, anyone in BC born in 2009 or earlier (ages 12 and up) is eligible for their first dose of the vaccine. Yesterday, they (they being the shadowy government organizations that decide which microchips will be activated first) announced that second doses are starting pretty much immediately, with your second dose invitations arriving 8 weeks after your first dose. My 8 weeks is up on June 2nd, so while I’m not holding out for that exact flavour of hero, it’s looking like both Ed and I will be double-dosed by the end of June. That is much faster than the original plan, which had us getting our first shots by September, or the updated plan, which said our second shots would be minimum 16 weeks after our first. This is good.

Ed and I have had multiple discussions about what we’re comfortable with when it comes to societal exposure. We’re in agreement that we’ll still be wearing masks indoors in public places, because I don’t think my anxiety could handle a naked face in public just yet. I’m very, VERY excited at the thought of the border opening up again, because I desperately miss our US friends and also Trader Joe’s and my package depot. I haven’t started making lists yet, but I’m basically seconds away from mapping out our Grand Return to Normalcy (which, in our world, is basically a large bag of frozen corn and tater tots).

And yet, for all my eagerness for March 2020 to be over already, there’s one notable area I refuse to think about just yet:

travel.

Just as I was willing to be one of the last people vaccinated if it meant that frontline workers, teachers, and retail folk could go first (obviously didn’t happen), I am willing to wait for the world to *truly* go back to “normal” before I start thinking about international travel.

I don’t want part of the experience – social distancing, limited entry, hand washing, mandatory pants in public, restrictions – I want it all. I want to be squished into an elevator with 50 other tourists to get to the top of a tower. I want to hop aboard a bus with strangers and listen to a cheesy recorded tour set to upbeat, royalty-free music. I want to stand in line for an expensive hot dog and not be able to put my preferred relish on it but will make do with the same condiments half the city has used before me. I want to sample foods and drinks and take transit in places I have no business being. I want to experience every single part of “travel”, and I’m willing to wait for it: we’ve all spent so long compromising on our entire existence for the last 15 months that when we’re free, I want to truly be free.

I’ll wear a mask in public for as long as I need to and wear masks indoors if the air I’m breathing isn’t my own, but I’m not going to be hopping on a plane the day after I get my second shot. Hell, my anxiety ramps up if I’m away from my own house for longer than a few hours, so I’ve got a touch of agoraphobia to work through before I get to the point of needing my emergency travel underwear stash .. but it almost feels like it’s time to start hoping again. That would be nice. I’ve been burned out on nothing for so long that I forget what it feels like to have something to look forward to that isn’t sleep because there’s nothing else to do.

For the first time in a long, long while, I’m cautiously optimistic – cautimistic – that there’s something more than an endless sea of nothing just over that horizon.

it’s so noisy inside my head

suspicious minds

I need to preface this story with a confession: we were both high. THAT BEING SAID, this was super weird.

Last night we were hungry, but I had forgotten to take anything out of the freezer and none of the other in-house options were exciting, so we decided to order in. We were also bored of our usual suspects, so we went through our delivery options to find anything that looked universally appealing.

Way, way down on the list of restaurants, we found a place we hadn’t tried before. It was highly rated (9.8/10), had reasonable prices, and offered free delivery. Great! From that moment on, though, everything was .. suspicious:

  • The place had a very generic name, like “Good Food” – something hard to Google
  • There was no address for the place listed, just a street name
  • The menu was huge, which always makes me suspicious of a place
  • The food they sold was unusual – not that the available items were weird, but that everything was described oddly:
    • “Breaded munchies”, with no description of what a “munchie” is
    • Each pizza listing started with “popular pizza sauce” as an ingredient
    • “Hand-sliced mushrooms”
    • “Spaghetti noodles mixed with ..”
    • “Popular veggie sandwich”
  • You could add toppings to your pizza. In addition to toppings you’d normally find on pizza, you could add:
    • Sour cream
    • Ricotta
    • Spinach
    • Ginger
    • Garlic
    • Cilantro
    • Chili flakes

We decided we were just high enough to be adventurous, so we ordered some food. The weirdness did not stop there:

  • The ordered arrived quickly, but there was absolutely zero identifying details on the packaging. The food came in a plain paper bag, a plain container, and completely blank pizza boxes. No logo, store name, menu, receipt – nothing but generic, blank containers and the food itself.
  • Speaking of the food, it was eerily perfect: three identical pizza bases with evenly spaced, totally uniform toppings. Honestly, it looked like what you’d get if you worked on the Enterprise and asked your food replicator for a 10″ Margherita pizza, warm.
  • We did, in fact, order the “breaded munchies” because we couldn’t imagine what they could possibly be. They were parmesan-garlic bread bites – not breaded, but actual bread.
  • The food tasted fine! Nothing to write a big blog post about, but perfectly edible and quite good – we’ve absolutely had far, far worse food delivered. If it wasn’t for the fact that a) we were evidently Conspiracy Theory High and b) all the things listed above, it would have been a routine, run-of-the-mill dinner order from a place we hadn’t tried before.

My current theory is that we stumbled upon a mid-range catering outfit doing pandemic business as a pop-up pizza place. Fake restaurants were all over the news a few years ago when food delivery started outpacing dine-in service, but mostly in big cities like New York and San Francisco – definitely not on the outer edge of suburbia, a stone’s throw from another country.

It was fucking weird, and it just kept getting weirder.

DINNER WAS SUS, Y’ALL.

i tried to tell roary my concerns but he did not care

rajas con crema

This recipe, if followed as written, will feed 4-6 people until they can’t move. You could probably shrink the proportions and make a smaller amount, but it’s very tasty and a major pain in the ass to make so cook up a lot at once then don’t think about it for a while.

Ingredients:

6 good-sized poblano peppers

1 jar of Mexican crema. The one I get is prolly 540ml or so.

1 can of diced chilies

1 can (or 1 cob) of corn (not creamed), drained. If you want to be super fancy, get a bag of Trader Joe’s frozen Mexican street corn and use it thawed. Feel free to also thaw the sauce pucks and throw them in to add extra flavours to your dish.

1 small white onion, cut into strips

Corn tortillas. Seriously, don’t use flour tortillas. You need corn for this.

MANY CHEESES. Get creative. My favourites to use include Monterey Jack, Cojita, Asadero, Oxaca – basically, anything you can get at an authentic Mexican or Spanish store. You can also use cream cheese for additional creaminess, but I am not a fan.

Diced chicken. I usually get a roast chicken from the grocery store, but you could use cooked chicken breast or chorizo or not use any kind of meat at all.

One (1) chicken bullion. I use a heaping teaspoon of this stuff, but a cube or powder-based one will work too. If you’re going for vegetarian, use a veggie bullion.

Black pepper

Some sort of pan lubricant x2

Prep:

You need to char and peel those peppers. It is going to be a catastrophic pain in the ass, but it’ll be worth it. Using a BBQ or a gas stove or a blow torch, place the peppers directly on some sort of fire. Turn them with tongs until the entire pepper is charred black, but the pepper is still firm. This is important: don’t overcook the peppers, you just want to burn all the skin off. When you have the pepper crispy black, place it in a large bowl and cover it with a plate. Continue until all your peppers are charred and in the covered bowl.

While your peppers steam a bit, slice up your onion and cheeses. Don’t worry about shredding the cheese, just cut it into pieces small enough to melt. Set it all aside.

Grab your steamy pepper bowl, and while wearing gloves (or bare-handed, idc) strip as much of the charred skin off the peppers as you can. Don’t rinse them in the sink for this, as you’ll wash off all the flavour juices. Once most of the skin has been removed, slice the peppers into strips and discard the core and seeds. This is a messy, slimy job. I hate it.

Cook:

In a large sauté pan, heat up one lubricant and toss in your onions. Cook over medium heat until soft. Add your poblano strips and protein and cook for a few minutes. Sprinkle liberally with black pepper and stir in your bullion.

Add crema. Start with about half the jar, and plan to add more whenever things aren’t saucy enough. Add the corn and diced chilies, then start throwing cheese in like your life depends on it. Add more crema and stir the whole mess as it cooks. 

Get a clean pan and very lightly lubricate it up (I use PAM for this). Turn the heat on medium-low and put as many corn tortillas in the pan as it’ll hold. The goal here is to just warm the tortillas up a bit so they’re floppy and delicious. I use my hands and flip the tortillas once while cooking, then transfer them to a tortilla holder because that’s a thing I own. Stack ’em up on a plate for communal eating. 

Scoop the rajas con crema into a bowl and serve with the warm tortillas. Top each taco with your favourite salsas and hot sauces (we use a super fresh pico de gallo and a jalapeño El Yucateco sauce) and cilantro unless you’re one of those people who think it tastes like soap. Pickled cabbage would be good here. Go to town. It’s a delicious place.

One of my favourite dishes from La Taqueria in Vancouver has always been the rajas con crema. It’s one of the few things I haven’t found a suitable replacement for way out here in Suburbia, so I ran through a few test runs before I came up with .. not a perfect recreation, but definitely a delicious one. This dish is kinda complicated to make, because it comes together extremely quickly when actually cooking but the charring and peeling of the peppers is somewhat of a nightmare. The fact that I make this dish as often as I do is testament to deliciousness, because I am a very lazy person at heart yet I will still do every annoying step needed to make something that ends up feeding us for several days in a row.

Poblano peppers are really mild, so this is not a spicy dish. If you like spicy, you can add pickled jalapeños or hot sauce(s). It’s also not the most attractive dish in the world, but it is REALLY FRICKIN’ GOOD so I think it’s worth making. It’s hearty, creamy, ever-so-slightly spicy, sweet, and tangy all at once and everyone will be extremely impressed with you and offer you baronets and shit. There will be a NetFlix special, but hold out for Disney+. You can swear there now.

Also, if you’re in the Vancouver area, you can get the crema, chilies, and hot sauces at Los Guerreros on Kingsway or in Langely. It’s a tiny place, but they’ve got an awesome selection of Mexican groceries. We go once a week or so to stock up on their pico de gallo, which I go through by the bucket. Super affordable, crazy delicious, and really authentic if you’re into that sort of thing. You can also swap out the crema for sour cream if you really want, but it’s such a nice touch that I encourage you to go balls out on the Mexican ingredients.

call me, hollywood. i got more of these.

A Sunday afternoon in the middle of a stay home order called for a trifecta of Lilac OG (a new favourite from Mota Cannabis), 10th Planet (heavy hitter also from Mota), and a smidge of Sky Cake (an excellent AAA Strain from Budmail).

I spent the afternoon as the clumsy, quirky, loveable, and perpetually single best friend of Paul Rudd’s wife (TBD, but probably Leslie Mann because why mess with a working formula) in a Judd Apatow coming-of-middle-age comedy, in the scene where the couple (who’ve been having marriage issues), find their teen kid’s weed stash and decide to smoke it in a montage set to an album Paul Rudd puts on and dances around the room to. I really hope I’m Margaret Cho. I love her.

.. wat

make it reign

For all my freaking out about my EXTREMELY CLINICALLY VULNERABLE diagnosis, I just realized there was only a two week difference between my vaccine and Ed’s.

That is not much of a head start.

Maybe I’m not as half dead as I feared.

Neat!

I love these tweets.

barbed wire tattoos

I HAVE A THEORY

A THEORY ABOUT ADRENALINE

Okay so beta blockers. They’re kinda keeping me alive right now. That’s cool, but what do beta blockers actually DO?

Beta blockers work by blocking the flow of epinephrine, which is known as adrenaline.

Well that’s interesting! What happens to your body when you have too much adrenaline?

  • rapid heartbeat (that’s why we’re here)
  • high blood pressure (my blood pressure is catastrophically high)
  • anxiety (hi have you met me i’m anxious about fucking everything)
  • weight loss (I attributed this to my lack of appetite and love of barfing, but)
  • excessive sweating (don’t have this anymore, but it was an issue for a number of years)
  • palpitations (so be it, Jedi)

Yeah so I have all of those. Also of note is the extreme vertigo I get whenever I have an actual rush of adrenaline: my body gets super excited when I get angry and also when I’m looking back over my shoulder while attempting to reverse for some reason. I’m like Bruce Banner but instead of being a genius who turns into the Hulk when he’s angry, I’m a slightly chaotic whirlwind who gets dizzy when she looks over her shoulder to parallel park. Practically the same.

I know medical professionals hate it when you play Google Doctor, but doctors in Canada can be stretched pretty thin at times, and I don’t want someone to (yet again) chalk all my issues up to the fact that I’m fat. I’m gonna take the time to advocate for myself, and advocating starts with research. After all, research diagnosed my goddamn heart failure at least a month before it was confirmed. If I had gone in leading with that line, I’d probably have received help a lot sooner than I did.

All of this is to say I think I might have an adrenaline disorder. It explains all my symptoms, including some that I wouldn’t normally attribute to my current bout of “what the fuck is wrong with Kimli”. It explains why I reacted so damn well to the drugs – not just in this instance, but last time too. I think I even wrote about how weirdly quickly I immediately felt better when I was given medication, and while I’m certain a lot of that was psychosomatic, there’s a chance my epinephrine was going hog wild and reining it in made the sweating and dying go away. I could totally be wrong about this, but it all fits together so neatly that I feel like I should push for someone to look into it. Call a committee. Have your people talk to my people. Take this to the next level. Does it scale?

Anyway, it’s interesting to me and also a puzzle to solve. Part of my overwhelming negative self image has always been attributing everything bad in my life to my weight (thanks, mom), but like .. what if all of this *gestures wildly* isn’t because I really like bread? What if there’s an underlying clause everyone has overlooked because of my rotund figure and jolly disposition?

I deserve to find out.

.. later, though. Ed got his shot yesterday (AZ) and it is kicking his ass. I’m gonna go pretend I’m a good human and adequate nurse maid and tend to his aches and pains. In the meantime, take this personality quiz thing from Adobe. The animations are neat, and my results pegged me to a T, right down to the orange fur, out-of-control eyebrows, and blowjob mouth.

i have too much of this, maybe
like looking in a mirror

peachy keen, jelly bean

Beta Blockers are the shit.

After my first bout of Fucky Heart, I was put on beta blockers to .. block my beta, I assume. I never really knew what they did, but my doc was pleased with my progress so I followed his orders. Eventually, I was weaned off my heart drugs and went on my merry little way, picking up other mysterious and complicated diseases along the way. It’s kind of my “thing”.

When I had to wear the Holter monitor overnight, my resting heart rate average was about 117. That is almost double the optimum amount of heart, so there was much concern, beard-stroking, and tutting. My new cardiologist started me out on a tiny, tiny dose of beta blockers, then had me wear the Holter overnight again to see if the medication helped. We had a chat this morning, and with my betas being well blocked, my resting heart rate is hovering below 80. Science is marvellous. I love science! Now we just need to fix everything ELSE currently wrong with me, but at least we’re off to a good start. I’m still waiting for my echolocation appointment, but New Doc is happy with my progress and I will absolutely take this win.

Ed is scheduled for his first vaccine this afternoon. He was actually scheduled for yesterday, but there was a massive traffic jam on the bridge leading to his appointment and no way we’d make it in time. Luckily, as we were leaving for this jab, he received an alert from another pharmacy saying he could book his appointment. While we were waiting for a break in traffic to duck out of the jam, I was able to book him a new appointment at a pharmacy 5 minutes from our house for this afternoon, then cancel the original appointment with 10 minutes to spare. I hope they were able to jab a walk-in patient, but the accident on the bridge was out of our control and I haven’t yet mastered the art of teleportation. Everything has seemingly worked out so far, but I’ll breathe easier (no pun intended) after he gets poked this afternoon.

If I’m being honest, I’m a little concerned about the follow-up vaccine process. I’ve been reading reports of the Pfizer vaccine needing a THIRD jab to make sure it takes hold, but I’m not at all confident I’ll be able to receive my second before the first one runs out of juice. I have range anxiety, in vaccine form. It figures.

Speaking of range anxiety, I ordered a magsafe compatible battery charger some time ago and it arrived yesterday and life as we know it has changed: you can charge your phone while on the go and not need to deal with cables at all. I’m very used to having a cable snaking out of my backpack while off on adventures, but now I can charge my phone and have full range of movement. I don’t know why I’m so excited about this – I haven’t had to use a portable battery since we were in Amsterdam 13 months ago – but ONE DAY it will happen again. And when it does, I can charge my phone without cables. Goddamn, I love gadgets.

Yeah, I’m buying AirTags. And I was thinking about getting a new iMac anyway, so I’ll be upgrading that too. What? I need to celebrate my heart somehow, and electronics make me happy.

There are worse things I could do
Than buy a new toy or two
Even if most of Twitter thinks I’m a sheep and a fool
I suppose it could be true
But there are worse thing I could do

swed: the live blog

I am very concerned about what modern Mickey Mouse looks like. Is he the round flat, or the retro modern pointy nose?

It took me an inordinate amount of time to calculate the modern equivalent of future time LMM’s writing about you today – this some no math bullshit.

Too high to say sausage roll. Very sad day.

Trifecta high for 4/20: Lilac OG+Dutch Crunch+Sky Cake.

Being very confused at how to explain my Future Hamilton timeline starring your life right now
What will the rousing statement in the big opening number introducing you be?

PSA: this is not a regular Tuesday high I think I 420’d too hard

TITULAR.

random ASBO thoughts

Over the weekend, a friend of mine shared that she drove around to a bunch of Free Little Libraries in Vancouver and topped them all up with donated books. I am 100% in love with this idea and thought maybe I could do the same thing out here in the sticks.

Then I remembered that I donated most of my books before we moved, because they were taking up a LOT of room and I had digital copies of everything. I did keep some books, though – maybe I could go through them and make a donation pile?

THEN I remembered that I am me, and the books I kept are not appropriate for free little libraries. Or children. Or people over 50. Or anyone.

.. then I started to think that it would actually be really funny (to me) to secretly donate like 6 copies of “Bear” to every FLL in the area and see how long it takes to make headlines about the bored pervert flooding neighbourhood libraries with weird CanCon smut.

It would be very, very funny to me to do this.

Can you be a bad influence on yourself?