Stupid medical shit and a dream about Loki

I’m actually only making this entry to describe the funny dream I recently woke up from, but since I am making it, I might as well talk about what’s going on while I’m at it. I’ll get to the dream in a minute here.

So last week (to coincide wonderfully with my deep sadness in regard to the decision I made), I was experiencing abdominal pain. Because I have multiple conditions that give me abdominal pain on a regular basis, I didn’t pay much attention, but I did notice it was getting worse. Eventually, on Friday, it had gotten bad enough (and had been increasing consistently enough) to give me some concern. So I went to the doctor, who referred me to a hospital for ultrasounds. And it turns out I have gall bladder stones and need to have the whole silly thing removed.

The doctor’s referral office set me up an appointment for today with a surgeon, and Friday to Wednesday seemed like a long time to wait — especially when they warned me very carefully what symptoms should send me to the emergency room over the weekend — but whatevs. I would wait. However, I wasn’t aware until Monday that I’d been misled by ‘appointment with a surgeon,’ and that this is just a consultation. I have no idea, as yet, when I can actually have this surgery, and an unknown period seems like an even longer time to wait. Because meanwhile, the pain continues to increase, and has with it that general feeling of ill health I hate so much and some nausea on the side, not to mention a lot of emotional distress that may have something to do with last week’s decision as well.

So I’m in too much pain to go to work, but not enough pain (yet) to go to the emergency room. I’m losing money every day, I don’t know how long this will continue, and Poe only knows how much I’m going to be out for the consultation visit (typically my specialist copay is $75) and the surgery itself (last year’s mass removal with no more than a local anesthetic ran me $500). I already had to pay $150 for the doctor’s appointment and the ultrasounds on Friday. Fucking gall bladder. I’m literally selling stocks in preparation for the next however long. AND MEANWHILE I’M STILL IN PAIN.

I was in no frame of mind to get any writing done over the weekend, though yesterday I wrote, like, four sentences on BC 22 (itself part of an entirely different emotional kettle of fish or maybe kettle of emotional fish). I’ve been working on my current RPG Maker project and a picture of two dogs, and watching a lot of Superman: The Animated Series. Just killing time, basically, until I can get this small and expensive bonfire removed from my side.

OK, but what I really came for. I had this dream:

These two minor gods were in some kind of trouble, and I was trying to get them out of it. But it was beyond my power, so I went to Loki for help — knowing full well it was a bad idea, but she was the only god I could actually communicate with. I explained the situation and asked if she would lend a hand.

As Loki replied, images appeared behind her as if she were running a slide show in the background illustrating everything she had to say. “I could help these two minor gods,” she said. “We could do such-and-such, and then talk to so-and-so, and get them out of their jam.” And the slide show demonstrated these potential actions.

Or…” she went on with a smirk, “I could turn them in for a bounty, and that would piss off…” And the slide show started scrolling rapidly through the images of every god in multiple pantheons, line after line after line of them, presumably listing all the many people who would be pissed off by Loki’s choice to betray these two minor gods. And it was pretty clear which option she was going to take.

The slide show thing and Loki’s smartassedness was so funny that I even laughed in the dream despite the situation having been made worse by my choice to go to her for help. I find it so funny in waking life that I had to write it down even though I haven’t logged a dream in a very long time.

And now back to my regularly scheduled suffering.

Edit: I have surgery scheduled for tomorrow morning. I’m so relieved to get it scheduled so soon, I haven’t been able to stop crying.

I didn’t really want to have to talk about this again

Long ago, the Saitou & Sano subfandom was full and active. There was ongoing conversation about the pairing, RK in general, and all the fanfiction we posted. For years and years I’ve been trying to get that back, and it hasn’t been working. These days there are almost no fans, there is almost no conversation, and my fics get almost no attention. I’ve long been aware that if I wanted something like that again, I would have to switch fandoms.

The idea never appealed to me, however. Nothing means as much to me as Saitou & Sano; nothing touches me like they do; nothing is as close to my heart. They’ve become such a part of my life that it’s been more than I could even imagine to give up writing about them, and where would I go then? No other fandom and no other characters come even close to making me feel what I feel (including the massive amounts of inspiration) for this pairing and this version of Saitou Hajime in particular; I can’t bend my fandom life around someone else.

But now the wicked behavior of Dead Author has struck what seems like a death blow to an already mostly dead subfandom, and I’m wondering: why go on at all? I guess I’ve always known I had to prepare myself for letting go at some point; why not now? I’ve only been writing about these guys for twenty years; they’re only my best friends; I only have Saitou’s motto tattooed on my back — no big deal, right? No, of course I’m not crying. Why should this be horrendously painful?

So what I’m saying here is that I’ll be tapering off. Obviously I’ll finish the in-progress fics I’m posting — you’d have to kill me to get me not to — and I’ll probably still work on the HoH stuff I’ve got going despite not having begun to post any of that yet… but the 30 other Saitou & Sano stories (and small handful of RK stories about other characters) in various states of startedness and finishedness I have sitting around on my hard drive will probably never be completed. I’ll convert what I can into original fiction (which obviously nobody reads, but at least then I’ll still be able to write it).

My heart is broken. I know it’s selfish to be focusing so much on the effect Dead Author’s inhumanity is having on my writing and my place in a community that already hasn’t existed for a decade rather than on the much greater and more life-destroying effect that type of behavior, on his part and that of others, has on its actual victims… but there it is. I’m not as hurt as the real victims, but I am very hurt by this. I’ve spent literally half my life on something I’m now feeling compelled to walk away from.

(Note: The next entry dealing with this contains less despair and more specific planning.)

Regarding Watsuki Nobuhiro and Rurouni Kenshin

I will continue to enjoy Rurouni Kenshin (and Busou Renkin). That version of Saitou, with his exceptional morality, will continue to be my favorite fictional character, and the romantic pairing of Saitou and Sano will continue to be one of my favorite things. I will continue to create and enjoy fanworks related to Rurouni Kenshin.

But to the pedophile Watsuki, who has contributed to one of the worst evils known to the world, who has put so many of my fandom siblings through hell, I have only this to say: お前 の 全て を 否定して やる.

And to those in the fandom that can’t bring themselves to separate the art from the reprehensible behavior and nature of the artist, and are forced to leave it behind, I understand. I’m sorry something like this has to take something you loved from you. Go well.

Ribbons and needs. I mean, arthritis and suck.

Although the neurologist referred me to yet another clinic for some radiographs trying to determine exactly what’s wrong with my hands/wrists, I haven’t actually done that yet because of Beeks’s surgery — I’m already in the hole at the moment, and don’t need to be dealing with more medical shit I can put off. The condition exists regardless of whether it’s tendonitis, bursitis, or arthritis.

And whatever its official name, it’s been flaring up hella bad lately, and I decided with extreme reluctance to try to avoid computer use this weekend to give my hands a rest. (My wrist braces help, so I’ll be wearing them as much as possible, but I’m in a lot of finger-joint-pain too, and at the moment I have nothing to help with that. I wish-listed some pressure gloves on Amazon, along with a speech-to-text engine, but I think I mentioned how much immediate debt I’m in.)

Yesterday I was foiled by a very busy (and subsequently very computer-intensive) day at work, but today and tomorrow I’m going to look for other shit to do besides working on stories and all the additional eight million things on the computer I have to work on. It would be a perfect time to get some recording done, but I have a cold with a sore throat, because of course I fucking do.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, it is depressing beyond words not to work on stories, and I am very sad right now.

I’ve been considering stepping away from the current HR chapter because it’s taking so long and a break from it might be helpful, and resuming work on that when I get back around to it in the rotation (meaning I would work on ASZz as soon as I’m off this hiatus). Nobody’s reading HR, whereas one person is reading ASZz and another is reading BC (which would come after that), so I think I’m safe to do this.

Meanwhile, wish me luck not being depressed and doing other things. This post is already counterproductively long.

Sad day

My little dog Hiko has swallowed a wire of some sort. He’s staying at the full-service vet overnight getting fluids in the hopes it will flush out of where it’s been sitting and pass through his digestive tract. A third set of radiographs in the morning will give a new perspective, and then I can decide whether or not he will have very expensive and scary abdominal surgery.

I am exceptionally sad and worried right now. Please to be keeping Little Man in your thoughts.

Here is a picture of him sadly hiding in the closet because he was in pain. Suffering was never so adorable T__T

EDIT 9:45 AM: The wire has not moved at all, despite the fluids and some food. He’s going to surgery.

EDIT 1:30 PM: He is out of surgery and doing well. The wire was embedded in his duodenum, which is why it wasn’t moving, but the doctor says there was very little inflammation at the spot and he’s confident of a good recovery.

I am so relieved I can’t even.

EDIT 7:30 PM: Home at last. So happy to have my Best Dog back. Poor little guy. $1,500.

EDIT DAYS AFTER THE FACT: I figure I’ll put down the actual sequence of events in greater detail so as to have a coherent record.

On the Tuesday that was my last day off work before returning after my own surgery, at around noon I noticed that Beeks was declining treats and hiding a lot (as pictured above). My immediate concern was foreign body, and I started watching carefully for signs of intestinal obstruction. There were no such signs, however, so I was a bit puzzled. I thought maybe he had a little bug, and resolved to wait and watch. (Later, since my “guess” {intuition} turned out to be correct, I regretted not taking him to a full-service vet that day when I was free.)

Overnight, I noticed he couldn’t seem to get comfortable, and one time he actually got up and went to hide in the closet again, though I put him back on the bed. On Wednesday, before work, I was noticing kyphosis and apparent discomfort in general but especially when sitting down. He was still defecating normally, so I was still at a bit of a loss, and in any case I had to go to work.

At work, however, I received a text from my mom (Hiko takes a nap on her bed from the time I leave to the time she gets up) saying that she’d reached over to pet him and he’d snapped at her. Now, Heeks is the sweetest and friendliest dog in the world, so this was the final sign that something was very wrong. Since dad was working from home that day (THANK FUCKING TOLKIEN, since mom’s MS would have made this very difficult for her), I requested he take Little Man to a full-service vet.

(Of course at this point mom wondered why one of the doctors at my clinic couldn’t look at him, which surprised me a little — I’ve been there almost three years; surely she must understand by now how limited a clinic we are? Most pertinently, we don’t have an x-ray machine.)

I’ve actually had no need whatsoever of a full-service vet… um, ever… because I’ve never had an animal sick or injured before, and my own clinic suffices for the things we do (vaccines and spays/neuters). Which means I wasn’t on file anywhere in town, and had to choose a clinic to send Leeko to. I chose the place I did my internship at, because I liked them so much, and I was pleased to find that some of them there actually remembered me even after three years! How cool is that!

Anyway, dad took Teeks in there, and after a while texted me the images from the first set of radiographs:


I knew instantly what that was. I have these bead curtains on my bedroom door that are composed of long wooden beads held together with stiff wires. I’ve caught Beeks chewing on fallen beads before, but I didn’t think he’d be silly enough to swallow one of the wires. More fool me -__-

Anyway, they kept him at the clinic giving him fluids and planning to take more images at around four in the afternoon. If the wire had moved at that point, they thought he might be able to be sent home in the hopes that it would pass. If it had not moved, surgery might have to happen. So I got to fret all day about that.

In the evening, the new radiographs revealed that the wire had not budged. The doctor I spoke to said that it was still possible it might move, but that surgery then and there was an option. I chose the middle ground, having him stay overnight (so I could fret more) and receive more fluids, then see how a third set of images looked in the morning.

In only tangential news, I’m trying a new sleep medication, and it had proven remarkably ineffectual up until this point. The doctor had told me I could go to two pills a night if just the one wasn’t working, and I thought this particular night — extremely worried and without my little dog to cuddle — was a perfect time to give that a try. And I’m cautiously hopeful about the outcome; I seemed to sleep OK that night and on subsequent nights with the double dose.

On Friday morning, a different vet from the full-service clinic called me (he was the one that specifically remembered me from my internship) at around 8:00. In fact I had a client in my exam room, and she was very understanding about my need to take a phone call in the middle of getting her dog checked in. The vet said that the wire had once again not moved at all, and he thought surgery was the next step. So I gave the go-ahead, and then could not stop absolutely freaking out for the next three hours or so.

When he called back, it was with the information I mentioned above: the wire had lodged in Hiko’s duodenum, allowing for the flow of fluids and even food through his digestive tract but causing him constant discomfort. It was removed with no problem and only a small incision into the duodenum, and he was all closed up and waking up from anesthesia with no complications. I cried and cried of relief and joy, and texted everybody.

My thoughtful supervisor and head doctor had been just about to allow me a long lunch to go visit Little Man, but the vet on the phone specified that I could pick him up that afternoon, so there was no need for that. It’s not impossible that my co-workers just wanted me to go see him because I was so completely useless while I so worried about him XD

That evening, when I went to the full-service clinic, I found a very groggy Beeks that nevertheless wagged his tail at me the entire way home. Also they’d saved part of the wire for me to look at, and I was confirmed in my assessment of its origin. I love my bead curtains, but I love my dog more, and they’re getting thrown away as soon as there’s space for them in the garage trash cans (we forgot to take the trash out, so those are all full XD). For now they’re still hanging up, because hanging up seems safer than lying down somewhere.

So that’s about the whole story. As I mentioned about, it cost me $1,500, which is very inconvenient right after I had surgery, but still about a thousand dollars less than I expected and pretty reasonable for the services he received. Poor little guy. I’ll only add at this point that Peeks has always been extremely difficult to pill, and with two antibiotics, an anti-inflammatory, and a pain med, we have a little rigmarole every twelve hours now. Pill Pockets worked exactly once :\

I love my dog.

Funeral report and whatnot

Sister P joined us from Georgia, and brought Malachi, her youngest (except for the one that’s incubating), along with. I shared a hotel room with them, and since Malachi is 23 months old and got sick for a while, there was a lot of Disney Jr. and not a lot of sleep.

Dad was the main speaker at the funeral, and, as he has always been an incredibly good speaker, that went well. There were a couple of poor musical numbers (we are a family of choir voices, not soloists), including the obligatory couldn’t-get-through-the-last-verse-because-crying-too-hard piece. Then we went to the cemetery for a short graveside service, including the military honors.

At least one of the Air Force Honor Guard members was a woman, which meant more to me than most other things that happened around these events. And I think I cried harder than at anything else when the bugler played Taps. Then, when they fired the salute, little Malachi very cheerfully said, “Uh-oh!” and that was the best possible touch.

Grandma did not attend any of the gatherings, because her Alzheimer’s is progressed so far that she would only have been miserable and paranoid at such things, but we did visit her afterward. A very kind and dedicated cousin has been living with and taking care of her; well done that cousin, and may she have a just reward.

Mostle and Jakebii also joined us from Utah, and it was the first time all six members of my immediate family had been together for several years. That was nice, but dealing with extended family is always a pain in the ass.

Extended family (unless you keep in close touch with them) is essentially a group of strangers, and your chances are just as good with them as with an actual group of strangers of finding common interests to discuss. But since they’re family, you’re forced to interact with them. Oh, and did I mention they probably have all of your personal flaws, too? Ugh.

In happier news, I did get to watch the Broncos game in the hotel room on Sunday. I seriously thought we had no chance against the Pats a second time, so I was very pleasantly surprised! We’re going to the Super Bowl!!!

In the Denver airport, I had to take a selfie with the signs I’d read about on the internet, because I love thems:

One night, as I slept imperfectly in a hotel bed, I dreamed about a zombie infestation in the mansion I was in. I was trying to find a sock for one of them. Then the paladins arrived, led by Deanna Troi, and I knew we were shifting genres from survival horror to action. That was a relief.

We got home from Washington late (by my standards) on Monday evening, and Beeks spent an hour jumping four feet in the air. Today I went back to work tired and with a super cold out of nowhere (seriously it sprang at me at precisely 11:30 this morning), but it’s been a decent day. Next week we’ll go to Disneyland for a more cheerful time out of town.

My grandfather always loved photography so much that I must not neglect to end this entry with the customary random assortment of pictures.

Seriously what does this look like.

Once I saw this squirrel as I was pulling out of the garage.

OK, you can’t even see her if you increase the brightness, but WAYBEE IS IN THAT BOX. A black box was around, and even though it was on the counter where she’s not supposed to be, she couldn’t resist getting into it and camouflaging. Ju can just see a bit of one little foot. ACH WAYBEE.

And the day will end for some as the night begins for one

In one dream, I was a badass swordsman that successfully defended the colony (which lived in the Jamboree building, of course) from zombies or something. I wore a super cool fantasy outfit and had Sword of Darkness II, which I even made fun of in the dream because it’s the most common fantasy sword that every nerd has on their wall and it’s not even sharp.

There were all these dudes that rallied around this one older guy swordsman that was disdainful of me because I was a ladytype. Despite the fact that I’d singlehandedly saved the colony, they were all sneering and such about women being swordsmen.

This guy challenged me to a duel, and then looked all skeptical and superior when I didn’t know the little duel-specific flourishes one is supposed to make at the beginning. It was a very structured and not very practical sort of duel, and he beat me easily, and I was kinda like, I don’t have time for this. Then he condescendingly asked if I wanted to try again, and I said, “If I lost, I lost.” And walked away. XD

There was another dream I wanted to record, but I’ve completely forgotten it now. Like, I can’t even vaguely remember what it might have been about. I just remember waking up afterward thinking it would be amusing to have written down. Ah, well. On to sadder things.

Zombie Girl is back in town(country) because her mother had a stroke. This, of course, is horrible, but nonetheless I am always glad to see my dearest friend again. Here’s hoping her mother has the fullest recovery she possibly can.

Speaking of hospitals and such, my dad and his siblings have elected to stop the no-longer-effective cancer treatment on their father and take him home. Last I heard, the doctors had no estimate on how much longer he’ll live; dad and uncles speculate a week or two. I have no great attachment to my grandfather, but I am quite attached to my father and will feel extremely bad for him when his dad dies. At least everyone’s known it’s coming.

Interestingly, my grandfather worked at a plant manufacturing nuclear bomb parts when he was younger, and apparently everyone that ever worked for that company and later developed cancer gets all their cancer treatment paid for without question by the company. I guess they knew they’d never win a lawsuit and just decided to be gracious before anyone came at them.

And speaking of cancer and dying, great thanks to David Bowie. 372 songs of my 12,724-song collection are yours, sir, and even though you had a terrible habit of throwing older songs onto the end of new albums over and over and over (so that I think I have about twelve copies of Space Oddity from different places), that doesn’t change the fact that I have more music by you than by any other single artist.

Stardust: The David Bowie Story was the first biography I ever read, and that long before I had any idea that I’m gay or even much of a concept of what ‘gay’ was. I’m grateful for the enlightenment and for the music. We’ll miss you, goblin king.

And now I think I’ve gone on longer about David Bowie’s death than I did about those of a couple of authors in the last few years whose work meant far more to me than his. Or about my own grandpa’s XD

Well, I’ve been quite productive this weekend, and I’m hoping to continue to be productive today. I don’t think I have anything else to say in this entry, so I’ll post some pictures and go away.

Bizarrely, here’s a picture of the mountains looking cool that I took from some parking lot other than Wal-Mart. What is the world coming to??

Northern Spy Apple Crisp is apparently a thing. I want to be a spy and have a special apple crisp just for me.

And here’s Waybee looking startled. She does that a lot more these days with younger, less appropriate animals around.

Last of all, a chinchilla I saw once at a pet store doing the best pose.

Is it safe Talib this to the defense?

Quote of the day, courtesy of Rick Riordan and pretty clearly intended for fans of Saitou and Sano: “You don’t call somebody an idiot that many times unless you’re really into them.”

Man, I am 54 parts into recording Confrérie, and of course then I would get a cold. Not like I can’t finish later, but, man, I was on such a roll.

This cold has gotten worse over the last couple of days, too, and almost completely ruined my weekend. I have accomplished nothing, which makes me very unhappy. But at least my Broncs won.

So I dreamed that Saitou had invited me and my family to this wedding, and my brother Sano was extremely upset because he thought Saitou was the one getting married — when in fact Saitou was just playing a lovely violin solo. So after the ceremony, I stormed off to give Saitou a piece of my mind for letting my brother be so unhappy. I would say I woke up giggling (mostly at Saitou playing a lovely violin solo), but I actually woke up coughing.

That’s really all I have to say.

There was this one time Waybee attacked a pinwheel that I had:


Also then why the crap did I take this picture I don’t even know:

BOWLS!!

My McDonald’s

I almost don’t know how to start this entry. It’s such an insignificant thing, but the difficulty I’m having writing this attests to its emotional impact.

My McDonald’s is closed.

I don’t think anyone is left reading these entries that was around during the McDonald’s days, and it’s possible that the history I’m about to relate won’t really convey what this means to me, but here we go.

It’s exactly half a mile from my house, a very easy walking distance even for kids and young teenagers — which is what my siblings and I were when they built the place about twenty years ago. The neighborhood, as I recall, threw a fit at the idea of a McDonald’s right in its midst — the builders had to agree not to install a sign taller than the building, which itself (including the PlayPlace) could not rise above a certain height, and there was to be no drive-thru speaker creating noise pollution — but my sisters and I were ecstatic. Walking up to McDonald’s for ice cream was far more exciting to us than it probably should have been.

Of course, back in those days they had the Flavorburst ice cream machine that, on the rare occasions it functioned, sent a ribbon of colorful flavor (your choice from among quite a few) twisting through your vanilla ice cream. It was delicious and picturesque to the point of being an almost magical experience, especially when you’d scraped together change to afford it and walked half a mile through a hot summer day to get to it.

This McDonald’s started out with a thorough (one might almost say aggressive) 50’s theme to its decor, and even had a jukebox that, though it accepted coins, was technically free. Whether it was our habit of setting Bobby Darin’s Splish Splash to play a hundred times in a row or whether the thing just broke, it was the first element of the theme to go. Gradually, all the other 50’s memorabilia from the walls and eventually even the sparkly red booth seating disappeared and was replaced by more traditional, modern McDonald’s items. And the Flavorburst (which I had the feeling was always a huge thorn in the side of the employees) was also axed (hopefully, for the employees’ sake, literally).

And eventually I went to work there. It was the second semester of my senior year of high school, I was 18, and it was my first job at a commercial establishment. Somewhat pathetically, I’d always wanted to work there, and even said so in my interview. Did they believe me? Probably not, but it was actually true.

Contrary to my expectations, however, though as anyone could have told me, McDonald’s was a wretched place to work as crew or management, a soul-crushing hell-hole that to this day sometimes still gives me nightmares. I only stayed long as I did (almost seven fucking years) because I’m lazy as shit and really hate job-hunting. Plus it was half a mile from home, so transportation was never a problem.

We were robbed four or five times over the course of my stay; at one point I was the only manager in the store that hadn’t been present for a robbery (and in fact was never present for one). I was taken to the hospital in an ambulance from that store once because we thought I was having a heart attack (I wasn’t). I called 911 for the first time in my life when somebody crashed into the retaining wall just outside and was thrown through his driver’s side window onto the lawn. Some of the worst moments of my life (I say it without exaggeration) happened there.

But not all the memories are bad. Of course the good ones mostly have to do with things we did to keep ourselves sane, or even shouldn’t have been doing at all… like the songs we made up about the business and each other and sang together all the time… or how, by sacred tradition, we’d turn on The Offpsring’s Americana album every night the moment the store closed… or the time Markus decided at random to see if he would fit into the dishwasher (he did)… or the wet t-shirt contest we had in the PlayPlace one night when we should have been closing… or the later sacred tradition of the Phil and ‘NSync version of Trashin’ the Camp the moment the store closed… or the time someone climbed into the negligently unlocked drive-thru window in the middle of the night and picked up the three-hole punch intending to use it as a weapon to smash things up, only to be startled into fleeing (with the three-hole punch still in his hand) by the alarm going off… or when we made a homemade movie on the security camera by staging a robbery that was foiled by a bunch of dudes that came and beat up the robber with the “Wet Floor” sign… Oh, and ketchup surprises!!!

I remember sharing so much anime with my co-workers, and the long and enthusiastic discussions we’d have about it at work after they’d watched it. I actually dated three different guys that worked there (this was during my dating-guys phase), and casually made out with a fourth who was, like, ten years younger than me at that point XD I came out as bisexual (which I thought I was at the time) at that store. I once walked over to a nearby haircutting place on my lunch break and got a mohawk.

I wrote a lot of fanfiction at that store, mostly on Saturday mornings when I was taking orders in the drive-thru and had free moments between cars too short to go do dishes but long enough to scribble a sentence or two onto a small piece of receipt paper I could easily tuck into my pocket.

I specifically remember writing out bits and pieces of And the Moments Drift Like Snow and realizing that there was actually going to be a sequel to As the Years Go Up In Smoke after all. I remember the day when the idea for Distraction Sufficient hit me like a slap in the face while I was working the grill, and I got so excited to write it that whoever was managing at that point, observing my agitation, actually let me go home early to get on that.

I remember Greggie My Eggie (everyone had a nickname) telling me about losing his underwear after sex with some random guy and inspiring Red Silk Thong; I remember a co-worker playing a pirated-straight-off-the-radio copy of Saliva’s Always (then not yet even officially released) and inspiring a songfic that even eventually got a sequel. Of course those stories are no longer around, but the experiences are ingrained in my heart.

At the age I am now, I spent 1/5 of my life working at that McDonald’s.

They told me (“they” being “just about everyone ever”) that, once I’d worked there, I would never be able to eat the food again, but in fact it turned out quite the opposite. To this day I adore McDonald’s food, and, though some items require some tweaking to remove onions and such — and salads, with my allergies, are only a very occasional indulgence — there is nothing on the menu I don’t enjoy. I’m certainly not in the store nearly as often since I quit, but I’m still there pretty damn frequently — especially given that their fountain Diet Coke is my mom’s favorite.

But… all that’s over now. And I just don’t know how I feel about it.

I have a tendency to become overly attached to things, to assign a lot of emotional value to anything with consistence and longevity, and nostalgia carries a lot of weight with me. So the mere history of this particular restaurant gives it a perhaps unwarranted place in my heart, and I can’t help crying a little as I think about it disappearing.

This past Wednesday was its last day open. Evidently the owner didn’t want to renew the lease, and I guess he gave his employees exactly one week’s notice. It this is the same owner as when I worked there, that comes as no surprise. Brother drove past it yesterday and reports that there was a line of people like ants going in and out of the building gutting it of movable equipment. I haven’t been up there yet to see; I kinda don’t know if I can stand it.

There’s really nothing else to say. My McDonald’s is gone, and I’m in shock.