Self-Isolation Diaries – Week 32

Greetings, Internet! Hope everyone is staying as safe and sane as possible. I’m on the mend from last week’s ER trip, ordered and received my MIDI controller, and rediscovered my love of Radiohead’s OK Computer. Daily summaries below!

Day Two Hundred and Eighteen (10/16/20)

  • And we’re back on the road to Princeton to deal with that wound dressing issue! Oh, what’s this? A downpour on the NJ Turnpike? Of course.
  • The doctor at University Health Services said the wound looks clean, there’s no need for extra dressing, and to just keep doing what the surgeon told me to do. Hooray for peace of mind.
  • PCR covid test: Negative. More peace of mind. Within the past two weeks, I’d only been in my apartment and at PTW, and they’re hella cautious over there, so I really didn’t think I had the ‘Rona. Still, it’s nice to have it confirmed.
  • My mother and I got ramen. Because of the ‘Rona, we ate ramen in the car. It’s kind of tricky to eat ramen in a car, but you know what, it was raining (i.e. noodle weather) and we’d had a bit of a week (see last week’s entry), so we deserved noodles.
  • Went to Whole Foods, Wegman’s, and Target. Because we were in the neighborhood.
  • Drove back to Manhattan. My mother then went back to Brooklyn.
  • Movie night! “The Addams Family Values” holds up better than I thought (it was released in 1993). And I still believe the Thanksgiving play scene is what small children should watch to learn about Thanksgiving.
  • Number of times outside: Twenty!
  • Currently feeling: My mother is the real MVP. That is all.
  • Currently looping: The Foo Fighters’ recent performance of “Learn to Fly.”

Day Two Hundred and Nineteen (10/17/20)

  • Awoke to no fever. Yay! Am following the surgeon’s instructions and cleaning the wound.
  • My sister’s here! She brought Chick-fil-a and pumpkin cinnamon roll ice cream. You know, post-ER food.
  • We watched “Moneyball” and ate ice cream. I’m embarrassed to say I had never seen it prior to today. Also did not realize that Chris Pratt was in it. So, um, I loved it and might have almost cried at one point.
  • Edited some audio I recorded last week and took out a part that definitely dragged on for too long. I thought I’d have to rerecord, but my cutting and pasting strategy appears to have worked just fine.
  • Ordered in tapas because we were feeling fancy. Then watched Game 7 of the ALCS. Cackled a little when Houston lost (as if a pandemic would make me forget what they did).
  • Got in the standing frame for the first time since last Monday. My hip flexors were tight.
  • Ordered my MIDI controller! Have I figured out yet where it’s going to go in my room? No. But am I excited, regardless? Oh, heck yes.
  • Currently feeling: My mission this upcoming week is to be in bed before 1am (bonus points if it’s before midnight). I mean, fine, last week was a bit unusual, but I really do need to get back on a reasonable sleep schedule. I need to do more dissertation work before I go all in on “Val figures out what a MIDI controller does” mode.
  • Currently looping: No Doubt’s “Home Now.” Return of Saturn is such an underrated album.

Day Two Hundred and Twenty (10/18/20)

  • Did the FES cycle for the first time since last Tuesday. Went well!
  • Wound-cleaning. Fun? No. Necessary? Yes.
  • Triotime Zoom/phone call!
  • Watched a lot of YT covers because I’m trying to be a good subscriber. I didn’t expect to end up with musical YT colleagues, so it’s been a pleasant surprise. One thing I’ve noticed is that some people might have a couple hundred subscribers, but a low viewcount per video (i.e. relatively low engagement). I have the opposite issue (low subscriber count, but pretty high number of views per video given the low subscriber count). This gives me relatively high engagement, so I’m happy about that.
  • Added some finishing touches to the audio for this week’s cover. Now to record the video portion.
  • Did some guitar playing for the first time since last Monday. Oh, it felt good to hold a guitar again.
  • Currently feeling: So much to do! I wonder if I should get one of those planners where you plan out your day by the hour. I have this tendency to give myself a bunch of things to do, but then not consider how long each task would take, and then by the end of the day I feel like I didn’t accomplish all the things I wanted to get through, when in reality I just did a bunch of things that are all time-consuming. In other words, there is no way I would’ve accomplished everything on the to-do list anyway. This whole paragraph is me musing on planners.
  • Currently looping: The Naked and Famous’ “Young Blood.”

Day Two Hundred and Twenty-One (10/19/20)

  • Cleaned wound. Still on the mend. If all goes well, this should be the last day of antibiotics. Huzzah!
  • Caught up on phone calls and emails. Exciting stuff? Well, necessary, I guess. I got a new primary care physician who isn’t in Princeton, so that’s great.
  • Guitar lesson! Learned about different modes within keys. My lack of music knowledge is kind of laughable.
  • Tutored Latin. My tutoree (tutee?) got Wheelock’s and I am so excited to pass on the amazingness that is Wheelock’s to the next generation.
  • Read the article I needed to read for this week’s reading group. I suggested the article, so I may have to give some background on it before the discussion. It actually ended up being really interesting (good interesting, not academic interesting (which is code for terrible)).
  • Currently feeling: I cringe when I listen to my own original demos. Cringe. What is wrong with me?
  • Currently looping: Muse’s “Resistance.”

Day Two Hundred and Twenty-Two (10/20/20)

  • Did the FES cycle. Watched a couple episodes of “The Defenders.”
  • Sat in on a Zoominar. Interesting stuff, although it wasn’t all medieval.
  • Recorded the video portion of this week’s cover. I’m actually excited to share it.
  • Writing workshop! Might’ve been the first one where I didn’t drink, on account of antibiotics (apparently, you’re not supposed to drink 72 hours after stopping antibiotics).
  • Currently feeling: Was so close to going to bed before 1am. Alas. Tomorrow.
  • Currently looping: The White Stripes’ “Rag and Bone.” I’ve been listening to Icky Thump on repeat lately. Love it.

Day Two Hundred and Twenty-Three (10/21/20)

  • Last day of wound-cleaning!
  • Did arm exercises while watching “The Defenders.” I wouldn’t want to watch “Iron Fist,” “Daredevil,” and “Luke Cage” (I still have two seasons of “Jessica Jones” to finish), but this one series is fun.
  • People leave funny YouTube comments. They’ll say things like, “I just joined! Hope you do the same!” and “I watched until the end!” They’re very much like, “I subscribed to you, so you should subscribe to me, or else I’ll unsubscribe!” I’m sorry, subscribe to me because you like my content, not because you want me to build your subscriber count (and we all know you’re going to unfollow me in a month anyway and hope I won’t notice). And “I watched until the end”? Why, thank you for trudging through my sub-four-minute video. That’s not a backhanded compliment at all. Subscriber counts are poor indicators of quality, if you ask me.
  • Called Push to Walk to cancel Friday’s workout. Just wanted to make sure the wound was totally healed up before going back. And then gave the Client Coordinator way too long of an explanation for why I had to cancel (because I am awkward AF on the phone).
  • Okay, playing with a metronome is really hard and I want to throw the metronome out the window. Who knew I was this bad at keeping time?
  • Went outside to pick up a taco order. The local taco place needs to survive the pandemic.
  • FaceTimed a friend I’ve known since elementary school. There was a most painful removal of fake nails. She was a trooper, for sure.
  • Total times outside: Twenty-one!
  • Currently feeling: That moment when you think you should donate to a senate campaign, but then all the holiday sales start up and you could get your holiday shopping done early and efficiently. But, senate campaign. Oh gosh, I know the senate campaign should take priority because we have to flip the Senate. Yeah, the Senate race takes priority.
  • Currently looping: Radiohead’s “Paranoid Android.” I’ve been listening to OK Computer after years of having forgotten about it. Still a classic.

Day Two Hundred and Twenty-Four (10/22/20)

  • Did the FES cycle.
  • Posted my cover of Blink-182’s “I Miss You.” I know people say it’s emo, but I’ve always thought of it as such a pretty and sad song. Hoping I was able to present it as such.
  • My mother’s here! She brought butternut squash bread. #butternutsquashseason
  • Therapy! Letting go of the idea of needing a partner, so that it doesn’t lead to resentment (i.e. single, lonely, and bitter (SLAB)). And welcoming the idea of getting over stage fright so I can attempt an open mic or two once it’s safe to do so. Reshifting priorities to get into a healthier mindset and all that. To be clear, I have zero intention of pandemic dating, or getting back into online dating. It’s just not for me. Let it happen without me feeling compelled to impress some stranger on the internet, or not at all.
  • My MIDI controller is here! As is the stand upon which it shall sit. She’s heavier than I expected, and I accidentally set up the stand incorrectly and had to redo it. Whoops. It’s feeling more like a home studio in my room now and I’m here for it. Her name’s Mad-Eye.
  • Give Kristen Welker a raise. And literally anything she asks for. Hot damn, that’s some moderating.
  • Currently feeling: When I look to my left, I see my acoustic guitar, my MIDI controller, and two music stands (one for the MIDI controller, one for sheet music). To my right, my flute and my ukulele, along with a bunch of guitar picks and a capo. My electric guitar is in the hallway. I cannot wait to play around with everything.
  • Currently looping: Radiohead’s “Let Down.” OK Computer is my favorite Radiohead album. Although I do really like Hail to the Thief (unpopular opinion?).

Thanks so much for reading! Stay safe out there, vote early/absentee/come up with a voting plan!

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