Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Jay: Happy Birthday

To former blogger Paul Burgess, who is 52 today.

11:08 AM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Monday, June 23, 2008

Jay: New Benchmark

This morning I appear to be down to 251, after a previous low of 253 and a week or so steady at 255.  That puts me down 57 total, 47 this year, and puts me back, as far as I know, at least ten years in weight.

Go me!

It must have been the supper of kielbasa, eggs and hash browns last night that did it.  Or perhaps the lunch of leftover black bean, corn and beef chili (which came out so good I must make it that way more often).

My favorite T-shirts were a design called Alchemy for Dummies, essentially a wizard working at a computer.  The ones I had were getting old and ratty.  When we still lived in Stoughton, we sought to buy more by mail from OffWorld Designs, only to find they were being discontinued.  We bought some, forget how many, in a size that was available and I might hope to shrink into.  I was in the habit of wearing XXXL, so I guess we got some XXL shirts.  We tucked them away.

Deb recently said if I shrunk into them she’d even hang them dry, as I used to do with T-shirts to make them last absurdly long.

I must fit them, or will soon, even if they run small.  There are shirts I’m wearing now that have never been so loose.  Guess we’ll find out, but I want to wait until I’m good and ready.  Not like I have a shortage of shirts, and some of them are even still good.  Ooh, this means some of the dress shirts will fit better too.  Cool!

Speaking of clothes fitting, that’s the other thing.  I can get into size 38 pants.  I’ve gone from fitting a 42, if loose, through 40 to the point it’s hard to keep them up, and into 38 fitting, if a bit tight depending on the pair.  Good thing IO still have some, even if I ruined a bunch of the best fitting ones painting my apartment in Quincy.

01:44 PM | Food & CookingMedicalTotally Random • (1) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Collected Aspie Posts

Once upon a time, I learned that a thing called Asperger’s Syndrome exists.  Even though it and most such labels do nothing more than put names on shades of normal - no different from being labeled geeky or athletic or musical - it still provides fascinating insight.  It even makes autism seem less odd, since it adds fuzzy shading to the borderlands between “us” and “them.”

Over time, I have posted on that and related topics, and this is an attempt to collect and revisit that, most notably by reposting the hard to find first post, less than two months into my blogging career, on my rapidly abandoned first blog.  Some of the links are dead, notably those to Dandelion Wine, but are included for the sake of exactness.

This is that first post, which actually post-dates the beginning of my interest, but brought it online:

Saturday, April 19, 2003

Asperger’s Syndrome

A while back, Wired, to which I subscribe, had an issue with an article on ”The Geek Syndrome.” It was a fascinating look at Asperger’s syndrome, which is a form of autism, on the autism spectrum of disorders; sometimes also called high functioning autism. People with it tend to lead a reasonably normal life, and tend to be disproportionately computer/programming/engineering oriented. Thus the article was looking at the idea that a high rate of autism in Silicon Valley and the Route 128 region might be a genetic result of the large number of geek, and therefore possibly Asperger, parents in those areas.

I was reminded of all this by a post on the topic at Dandelion Wine

The Wired article had a sidebar of an “Autism Quotient” test, which purports to measure where you fall on the spectrum. From what I have seen, many people don’t think it’s a particularly viable test. Nonetheless, I found it interesting and so I link to it here:
AQ Test

My score was 30. They say at the top of the test page that “Eighty percent of those diagnosed with autism or a related disorder scored 32 or higher.” Looks like I push the envelope a little.

Related to this, Dandelion Wine also points us to a brain quiz, ostensibly ”how male or female is your brain.”

I took the interactive EQ test and then, clicking from those results, the interactive SQ test. Both require Flash. There’s an option for manual tests as well. From the test pages you can then go to this final page to work out what type of brain you have, using a grid to plot the results of EQ and SQ and see which shaded area you fall into.

For what it’s worth, my scores were:
EQ of 41
SQ of 53
Overall brain type “Extreme Type S”


The original Wired article and AQ test led me to actually buy books on Asperger’s and to read all about it online, because I seem to approach but not quite cross over to it myself, and I suspected my nephew was so afflicted. That and it was inherently intriguing, as I find anything to do with brain function to be, given my own history. That has always applied to IQ testing as well.

- Jay Solo, 2:25 AM

The next relevant posts I located offhand were at Accidental Verbosity, in the form of:
Autism As Extreme Male Brain
Asperger’s Schizophrenic Hyperactivity Deficit Disorder

That second one points to a related discussion, starting from adult ADHD and going into more in the comments.  It predates Caltechgirl having a blog, rather than being an avid commenter.  Her comments on the set of topics are especially cool.

Again with over- and mis-diagnosis, the attention deficit stuff is as much as anything an excuse for drugging kids into being uniformly submissive, passive bots who can bear not to have recess and won’t have normal traits some people find inconvenient or hard to understand.

These Quizzy Things are only marginally relevant, but I remarked about the Aspie relationship to the perfectionist quiz especially, but even the other two are about being a certain way or collecting certain facts.

In You May Just Be An Aspie... I linked to and quoted extensively the best of this You Might Be An Aspie If page of collected behavioral anecdotes.

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Aspieness had me linking a slicker AQ test, on which I scored 32.  These always seem to vary depending on mood and change in thinking over time.  Having written that, I took it again, going on a year later, and scored 36.  Oops.

Most recently, last October 29, in How Aspie Are You? I linked another quiz, which interestingly I just retook and scored 138 and 58, versus 161 and 54 last time, an improvement.  I must have gone less wishy-washy last time.  Basically it’s no/never, or kinda yes/sometimes, or really yes, all the time, with a 4th option for not sure/don’t know.  I saved the PDF, but didn’t bother with a screenshot.

I probably wrote about this elsewhere and didn’t find them all, but basically that’s what I had out there.  Besides any instances where I mentioned autism and slammed the idiots who won’t let go of the vaccine preservative autism nonsense people grasp at like so many straws.  But that’s an entirely different topic, though obviously these posts touch on it because of the clear genetic connection.  Geeks beget geeks.  Sometimes the curve goes too far and we call it autism.

It’s hardly shocking for two high IQ people with geek tendencies (remember, Deb went part of the way toward an engineering degree before resorting to expedience to graduate sooner) to have had Sadie, Valerie - who increasingly seems to make Sadie look normal and ordinary - and even, it appears, Henry.  You never know, after all.  I started out as charismatically sunny, amused and communicative and physically quick as he is.  He doesn’t merely look like I did.  He’s already getting into the “taking things apart” or “seeing how things work” kind of trouble I’d have thought would take longer.  None of which means aspieness, but it’ll be interesting to watch.  And again, nothing wrong with that.  Someone has to fall on that part of the range of human, and it’s not like you can’t function.  Well, kind of.  Mostly.  Sometimes.

12:30 PM | BloggingGeekeryKidsControversiesMedicalNewsQuiz or Meme • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: No Birthdays

Another day with no birthdays to mention, and so it gets a placeholder post.  Don’t you feel special?

This is a full working day for me, whatever that may entail, as it’s an off day for Deb.  In effect, we both “work” seven days a week, and let it never be said that taking care of the kids - or house, to the degree the kids allow it - is either “not work” or “woman’s work.” I’d like to think we’re a bit more enlightened than that in 2008.  It is 2008, right?  Yeah.

Some of these posts, and the birthdays, have been pre-posted in a batch, dated for the appropriate time, so I don’t have to get up every single morning and post any birthdays there may be, or feel obligated to post something to keep the blog looking lively.  Presumably there’s been some stuff between the batch posts, but if not, well, it’s something anyway.

10:39 AM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessKidsMoneyTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Jay: I’m a Depression Era Husband for Sure


As a 1930s husband, I am
Very Superior

Take the test!

Via Charles, who scored 73.

12:14 PM | Quiz or Meme • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To my former colleague Maureen Kirby, who shares my birth year of 1961.

11:19 AM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger John Cole.

11:18 AM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Jay: This is not the only blogging venue, go look

I’ve been blogging a lot at the other sites, which are easier because WordPress works well with w.bloggar and Expression Engine doesn’t.  In particular, I’ve accumulated a ton of links dating back months, which I’d intended to post, even in “here’s a link” fashion, so I’ve started catching those up at Tersosity, which is exactly the place I’d intended for quickie stuff like that.

However, there have also been and likely will be more posts soon at Reality Bucket, which fair warning is our political and cultural fuckyouwesaywhatwethink blog, and at Geek Practitioners, Married Guy Cook (where I need to post about Hell’s Kitchen before we get to the final 3 episode and Corey gets eliminated), and Bizosphere.

There will be stuff here, too, as I get a chance, between things I need to say, and reposts I have more or less queued, besides the fact that at least one post per day will appear for the rest of the month even if I drop dead of ifhewerentafatpighedbealivenowcuzweknowskinnymeansimmortal syndrome or something in the meantime.

So if you’re bored and haven’t been paying attention, check those, especially solojay.com, because the volume of links will give you lots to go read.

07:00 PM | Blogging • (1) CommentsPermalink

Jay: No Birthdays

Another day of no birthdays so soon?  Well, it’s only the 4th of 6 during June.  Seven, if you count as none the one where there was a birthday of an obscure relative, of unknown mortality, I barely saw fit to mention.

Presumably this is the longest day of the year, all 24 and a fraction hours of it.  It’s all downhill from here, but I guess we can take solstice in it taking six months.

Actually, looks like the solstice was technically the 20th, but at a minute before midnight, so yeah.

This is a work day for Deb, so for me it’s a day being nibbled to death by ducks, in the form of a slew of kids, while trying to get something, anything done.  As I get into a groove of more work that pays or generates money indirectly, I will definitely need cheap babysitting part of the time I am here alone with the gang of three.  The great thing is even that will have flexibility.  Even a day of it, in the absence of scheduled out of house work, would be helpful, and it shouldn’t matter which day, so if I have my mother come down, it needn’t interfere with the bit of sitting she still does for my brother.

11:02 AM | BirthdaysBloggingBusinessGeekeryKidsMoneyNewsWeatherTotally Random • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Forgot to mention

Henry was 10 months old yesterday.  You’d never know it!  You’d think he was about 2 years old, based on size.  Except he looks too babyish, stands expertly but doesn’t take steps, and has limited words.  He’s also a twerp, waking thoroughly before Deb leaves, then falling asleep on my lap once it’s too late for me to get more sleep, leaving me sleepwalking my way through the day.

That also means I have 2 months to raise at least $3000 to stabilize things further, as well as increasing revenue on an ongoing basis so we can afford luxuries like gas and electric subsequently.

10:51 AM | KidsMoney • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Speaking of Cheese…

Valerie has decided she loves blue cheese dressing the way some people love ketchup, and must have some every night with supper.  Apparently giving her some with salad recently created a monster.

01:24 AM | Food & CookingKids • (0) CommentsPermalink

Friday, June 20, 2008

Jay: Say, Cheese?

I’d meant to note that Henry ate cheese that Valerie helpfully gave him the other day, colby jack, with no apparent problem.  That followed a couple instances when he’d sucked on but apparently not injected anything from dried slivers of the same.  It’s the all-around cheese we buy for the sake of having some cheese in the house, sometimes.

That would fit the histamine theory regarding the cheddar.

It’s also of interest in relation to the milk he apparently had issues with being flavored, and there always being a chance it was that, as well as the possibility cheese would be processed enough to be fine, apart from the histamine thing.

He’s fine so far with everything wheat, and he seems fine with beans.  He seemed to react to something in orange Kool-Aid.  Not clear about the lemon Kool-Aid.  He’s been fine with both Country Time and generic lemonades that already contain sugar, but not with the same basic stuff in punch flavor.  I’m still not completely convinced he isn’t bothered mildly by something in Club crackers.  His skin’s been variable but overall better than ever since eliminating sweet potatoes.  The variability could be spices or stuff that’s moderate keeping it active to varying degrees.

Anyway, just meant to mention the cheese thing, which is intriguing.  It’s a good thing he doesn’t have a peanut allergy, as the girls are very helpful at keeping him from avoiding foods completely.

04:54 PM | Food & CookingKidsMedical • (1) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Only 64?

My uncle, David Bryant Ellis, would have been 64 today.  Assuming my year of birth data is accurate, anyway.  That means he was but ten years older than my oldest brother, the same gulf between me and my youngest brother.  Talk about generational blurring.

He has been gone now for many years, and even though I knew he was markedly younger than my father, he was very “old” by the time he died.  It was unsurprising almost the way it would be for an octogenarian.

David was amazingly talented at drawing.  I see Sadie’s distinctive drawing and think of him.  He loved science fiction and comics, but mainly of the darker variety.  The glum SF for which the sixties were known was just his thing.  I remember him when I read something he might have enjoyed, or wonder what he’d have thought of something in the genre.

Funny how you can miss someone with whom you had such limited contact.

12:48 PM | ArtBirthdaysBooksGeekeryKidsTotally Random • (1) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger Katie the Mango.

11:46 AM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink

Jay: Happy Birthday

To blogger Jaynee.

11:43 AM | Birthdays • (0) CommentsPermalink
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