Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Alurt and Alive

Hello everyone. I've stopped snoring now so you can all uncover your ears in complete safety. My goodness! Two entries in less than twenty-four hours! Aren't we special? Call in pennance for sloppy upkeep in the past month which was partially but not totally due to illness. I feel very well rested at the moment which, incidentally, is right around nine o'clock. I remember at least a part of a couple of dreams I had last night which I take as a positive sign of things to come sleep-wise. I'm not going to hold my breath about this. However, rumour has it that at long last, Blio will actually be launching today. I've heard that song before only to discover that there have been yet more delays. Blio is a new epublishing service for electronic books whose software has been designed for everyone to use but with blind people in mind right from square one. The days of waiting well over a year in most cases for a book to be made accessible to blind people by the CNIB digital library may at last be behind me. That would certainly add spice to the coming Winter. I don't mind budgeting for books if I'm not asked to pay four or five times as much for an unabridged audio version when all I'm really after is to have the damned story made accessible to me. I'm quite used to my computer's syntheti speech reading books and it sure as shit doesn't cost publishers much at all to produce a straight-up accessible electronic copy.

People have at times wondered what kind of social life I would deem a good and successful one. Given my limited financial resources, that's a good question. I'm simply not in the same financial league as most of my working contemporaries. On the other hand, I'm also not as hung up on appearances and also not in debt. I do have to space out my more costly outings. Presuming I don't save up, I can spend something on the order of $120 per month if I make relatively painless cuts in other areas. For instance, if I knew that I was going to be out with people regularly, I wouldn't spend as much on junkfood, audio dramas, and other things which help pass solitary time more pleasantly. If I knew, for instance, there was a place I could go to once or twice a week where I could engage in some activity which let me actually get to know people and develop meaningful relationships, I would cheerfully make those cuts. I have yet to find any local club for disabled people or even for so-called "normal" people who want to expand their social circles. It's like there's an unwritten rule that you have to be too far away to meet in order to have the time to do so. I can attend online chats regular as clockwork with people in the US or other provinces but can't find a few people around my age to go out for coffee with once a week. There's just something fundamentally fucked up with that picture. I want to achieve more of a connection with people in my community. If I can get there and back without crippling myself financially, I'm quite happy to volunteer somewhere if it gets me out of the apartment and isn't a solitary activity. I have plenty of work I can do on my own already right here. Alright? I don't think I'm asking for the moon. Just the sense that if some unfortunate accident befell me, someone outside my immediate family might wonder where I was before I began to decompose.

This friday, if nothing comes up for her, I should be seeing Minney. She's a woman I met in the Clearview church who still talks to me regularly by phone. She's working as a nanny and a cleaner so when she's not busy, she tends to be flat out exhausted. It'll be the first time I've actually physically gotten together with her in at least a year. She feels the need to bring over some food for me to try. I'm fine with that but said that she should come back on another occasion and try some of my cooking. As with a lot of people, I have my doubts that she'll take me up on my offer. A lot of well-meaning people out there are quite willing to jump through hoops to help you. However, trying to aim for a more balanced, healthy and reciprocal relationship seems to be like pulling teeth more often than not.

When I've reached the stage where I can hear about an event in the GTA and know someone who would truly enjoy going to that event with me, that would certainly tell me that I'm on the right track. I hear about so many things like festivals or conventions that I just can't get to even if I have the money available. I'd like to make some friends who would naturally want to go to these things as opposed to people who go out of a sense of helping me experience something they're not interested in that I otherwise couldn't.

When it comes to friendships, I'm not really after quantity of friends as much as I am quality. This generation seems to be all about how many "friends" one has on Facebook. I'm after depth of relationship. Friendship in my book is built on shared time and experiences of common interest. I want to have a sense that I'm giving as much as I'm getting. Unfortunately, most of the friends I have a deeper relationship with are ones I can't get together with very often. Steve Murgaski is a prime example. I've known him since grade school. However, it's harder to share new experiences with him since he doesn't live very close and both of us are blind. That limits travel and experience possibilities. I want to have friends who don't hesitate to ask *me* to help *them* with things. I've found that the only person who actually gets me to help him assemble stuff rather than just doing everything for me while I sit there like a lump, is my father. Nobody else thinks it worth taking the time to describe what needs doing, let me feel the parts or tools involved, and actually help with the process. I know I'm not an expert carpenter but just because my eyes don't work doesn't mean my brain and hands are useless.

I believe that things are finally beginning to move in a positive direction here in the social department. It's just going to take quite a while longer than I think it should in order to undo the effects of having five years of progress undone when my marriage fell apart and then not being settled in a permanent place of my own for so long. Thanks in no small part to the church I belong to, I'm beginning to have more of a life outside family. Every once in a while, I'll probably still go to Symposium Cafe on my own in order to stave off cabin fever and enjoy the wonderful food and service. However, I'd much rather go there with other people and have reached a point where I've got to do less of that on my own so that I'm financially able to eat out with others. Being determined to enjoy my first Summer here whether or not I had people around, I've spent extra to do that. I certainly don't regret those decisions. They've allowed my favorite season to pass far more pleasantly than otherwise. However, things do have to change now if I hope to have any wiggle room next Summer.

By damn! That pineapple was flipping perfection. Probbly ate more of it than I ought to have but Man! That was splendid. It's pouring rain out there now. My balcony is somewhat curved in a way that means I can actually step out onto it around half a meter or so before I start to feel the rain. Otherwise, I just get some of the wind going across. Call me a simpleton but I find that rather nifty. I think it's due to the curve of where th rail meets up with the bedroom window. Well, folks, I'm just about finished this cup of Blue Diamond Vanilla Almond Breeze Non Dairy Beverage. Now there's a marketting mouthful for you. It's proved to be one of the more successful grocery experiments of the last while. Somewhat richer than milk but quite refreshing when cold. Two cups up. On the other side of the coin in my latest order was San Pellegrino Chinotto. I won't be ordering that stuff again any time soon. I figured it would possibly be an interesting change from softdrinks. What I got were six very small bottles not even containing half a large glass worth of liquid. These bottles are thin at the top but thicken as you go down. They're quite weighty for their sise. The bottom third of them are so thick that I wonder whether I could even crack them with my hammer. Perhaps, I should try it just to get some bang for my buck. What's in that bottom third of bottle anyhow? An emergency supply of pressurised air, or perhaps an enraged djinni travelling economy class?

I'll rap this entry up with another of my more successful purchases. ZBS is a favorite place for me to acquire audio dramas. They came out with an addition to the Jack Flanders series called Steam Dreamers. It's a shorter entry but I found it an interesting couple of hours. It explored the natures of both reality and adiction in a fairly unique way and thereby helped a couple of solitary evenings pass more pleasantly than they otherwise would have. Hats off to the crew at:
They've kept a good thing going for decades. I look forward to whatever they come up with next. Later, everyone.

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