Missing Appetite

My appetite has gone missing again.

It vanished the first time, understandably, when Nancy was in the hospital, and then after she died, and then when my Nana died. Supposedly my appetite can not handle such stressors and chooses to leave until they pass.

I thought it was creeping back, and was looking forward to being back to normal, when it suddenly vanished again. I am unsure why. Perhaps the recent botched visit to the rheumatologist? Oh wait, I forgot to tell the internet that story. Later.

Anyway, I took myself to the grocery today intent on buying a treat–something to lure Appetite back from wherever it was hiding. I went up and down aisles, pointing to various tasty things. Do you want some fruit snacks, appetite? Remember how we used to be able to eat a whole box of those? What about some chocolate creme-filled donuts? Some tasty fruit, perhaps? We could make a smoothie! A steak for dinner, perhaps? What about some sugary breakfast cereal?

All to which Appetite replied “eh,” or “meh,” or “nah.” That is, until the end, when it said “take me home right now, or I’ll tell hands and wrists to flare up!” to which I said “but!” and then flaring and writhing ensued.

I’m not sure what to do, or if I should just not worry about it. I worry about too many things.


I have never been able to think recursively.

It wasn’t until a year after the concept of recursion was introduced to me in some Comp Sci class or another that I actually started to get inklings of a grasp of it, rather than just faking understanding.

Human brains just aren’t built for recursive thinking, or so I say, because I do not want to admit that I just. Can’t. Do it. It is like forcing my brain the wrong way through a meat grinder. It fights tooth and nail every step of the way towards understanding, rejecting recursion like some foreign body.

There have been times, usually during a test in Dr. Shannon’s class or late at night before a program is due, when through sheer willpower I have suddenly understood enough to be able to write a recursive function. But the understanding does not come as a new, enlightened imprint on my brain. Rather it feels a lot like falling down a flight of stairs–the idea is suddenly within my grasp, and builds and builds and builds until I reach the solution, after which I stand up, slightly shaken, not quite sure how I got there, and pad off hastily as if nothing ever happened. Thus recursion slips quietly from my brain once more.

The next time I confront the problem of recursion, it is back to the beginning, pacing back and forth at the top step, trying to remember how I got to the bottom last time. That, and the impending dread that something terrible is about to happen.

I often wonder if it is just a certain personality type who is able to grasp recursion and think recursively without effort. I should like to meet such people, so that I can nose them and watch them and figure out what they have in common. I have no theories as to what kind of person this would be other than it would probably be surprising to me. I’d like to do a secret investigation of people who know nothing of computer science, pluck out the ones who have a mysterious knack for recursion, and study them intently. Perhaps a great life secret of some sort can only be solved by thinking recursively.

The reason this all came about is because I’ve run into a situation at work where I have suddenly realized that I could perform a function recursively. This is maddening to me, because I’d convinced myself upon graduation that recursion was a programming fairytale, and that I’d never actually have to write a recursive function myself in the real world. Of course, at the time I’d also convinced myself that I would never be a programmer, so there you go.

Who finds recursion easy? Raise your hand, please. *readies clipboard*

Spaghetti Sauce

I’ve been experimenting over the course of several months with trying to make a good spaghetti sauce. I’ve reached a point of consistency, and test driven this sauce with a couple of people (with good results), so it is time to share the recipe with the world!

It’s not terribly exciting sauce, and it is quite basic, but tasty. The best thing about this recipe is that it’s for a SINGLE SERVING. Having to cook for myself most of the time, I’ve found the typical family-to-dinner-party sized recipe to always be way too much for just one (or two).

Anyway, onward to the one-person spaghetti sauce recipe! (Which can be easily doubled)

* 1 tsp olive oil
* 1/2 medium onion diced
* 1 garlic clove finely chopped
* red wine vinegar
* 1 8-oz can of tomato sauce
* Basil
* Oregano
* Chopped bay leaves
* Black pepper
* Cinnamon
* Parmesian cheese

I use a skillet to make this, but I suppose a sauce pan would work. Heat the oil in a skillet on medium-high. Add onions and garlic and cook for a bit. Add some red wine vinegar and stir up the onions, cook for several minutes. Add the tomato sauce and stir, reduce the heat to medium-low. Add spices in amounts to your liking, you only need a very small amount of cinnamon. Cook the sauce until it starts to thicken (maybe 5-7 minutes), stirring frequently. Add parmesian cheese to your liking (I usually use like 1/4 cup) and stir. When the sauce thickens it is ready to serve! It is the perfect amount for pasta for one person.

An Update!

Another website update! I’ve put up a photos section, which is meager, but has some shots from my visit to Savannah.

So many long stories. I went to Savannah to visit Will, and many events were had. I am too tired to tell stories.

Wheeler also came to visit recently, it was also fun times. Again, too tired for storytelling

This weekend, Carleton’s little brother and his friend are down visiting. He’s going to look at Centre tomorrow. It’s all fun times, we tried to fly a kite at Waterfront park, but kite flying proves to be tricky.

I am in desperate need of an introvert weekend, would people be too terribly upset if I didn’t go to Thunder?

Lastly! I added a link to Will’s Website on my page, because it is up! I helped!

Blah stuff

The end of the fish dynasty

Anne was kind enough to adopt Ottobot. I am very happy that he is in a new home that I’m sure will be a good one. (Btw, Anne, I just realized that I forgot to pack those algae wafers I had! I can bring them when I’m down there on the 17th).

That being taken care of, I have now packed away all my fish-keeping goods in a crate. It hasn’t really made me feel any better. I don’t know if I’m ready to rush off for a new pet, or if I should just stick to tending my garden for awhile. I’m not really sure what would be best for me.

Meanwhile, if anybody in the area is rearin to start an aquarium (which I do recommend, fish-keeping is wonderful! I just need a rest from it right now), I have plenty of things to lend!

Please let me know if you are interested in some of the following:
1 5-gallon mini-bow tank (with lighted lid)
1 2-gallon critter carrier
1 1-gallon tank (with lighted lid and undergravel filter/airstone bubbler)
1 1/2-gallon tank (good for hospital purposes or temporary housing only)
2 Whisper filters (1 has a low flow setting)
Cotton carbon whisper filter cartridges
1 100 watt aquarium heater
1 50 watt aquarium heater
2 tank thermometers
a plethora of fish medications (ick, fungus, parasite, velvet, maracyn-2)
a plethora of water treatment items (stress coat, melafix, aquarium salt, algae control substances, water chemistry test kit)
1 net
various decorations and hidey holes (including coral castles, small terracotta pots, and silk plants)
lots of glass beads and river stones
2 gravel vaccuums
1 tank divider
various foods (betta pellets, freeze-dried bloodworms, generic flake food)
1 acrylic tank scrubber (with long handle)

Plus, I’d help you set up your aquarium and help you stock it and help you if your fish ever got sick! I…just don’t want to be the mother.

Let me know

Anyone in need of aquarium tenant?

I was building up to write a big long post about Nancy sometime after her death, and with my grandmother’s death so shortly afterwards, it seems unusual and possibly callous to post about a fish. Oh well.

McKinley, the betta that Ken gave me as a Christmas present to cheer me after Mr. Laguna’s death, has died today. He was the last in a long chain of fish deaths over the past few months. I am mostly sad that I had him such a short time, I feel like it’s some lack in mothering skills that led to his short life span, but perhaps that’s being unfair.

I am taking a break from fish-keeping. As much as I am delighted by bettas, I need a pet with a little longer of a maximum lifespan at this point in my life. Maybe a turtle. Cari’s turtle gave me a bit of a look into the sort of interesting and spunky personality a turtle can have. My apartment’s strict no-mammal policy limits me otherwise.

I suppose I am being slightly unfair, for there is one fish left. It is little Ottobot, the Otocinclus catfish. He’s a maintenance fish, and is tiny and swift and usually hides, only coming out to rasp away the algae. He is full grown and barely an inch. A lone maintenance fish in a 5 gallon tank does not seem an appropriate life, and I do not want to get any new fish for the tank. I really just want to take down this tank altogether.

Would anyone be interested in adopting a little otocinclus catfish? He is a very hard worker and needs a good home. Surely someone out there near me has an aquarium that could use a good rasper. Much better than plecos, I might add, because those things grow to be like a foot long. Ottobot is a good fish, you’ll never get a peep out of him.



For the most part, my analytical brain helps me out, but from time to time it gets in the way. I am very bad at the “what would you do with 1 million dollars” sorts of questions, because even though I know the real question is “what are your most prominent superficial desires,” I cannot seem to answer as such.

Growing up, I believe I missed the point of the “is the glass half empty or half full” question. When proposed, I simply thought, “Well, how did it start off? If it started as a full glass and half was removed, then it is half empty. If it started empty and was filled halfway, then it is half full. Duh!!” I couldn’t answer the question without knowing the previous state of the glass and where the state was going. If the person asking refused to tell me these things, I would simply refrain from answering the question due to insufficient data. I did know what they were really trying to get out of me, but for some reason I couldn’t answer the implied question, only the literal one. Honestly, they should have just asked me if I was an optimist or a pessimist and been done with it.*

I am thinking this fond analytical memory should teach me something about myself and how I work, but I can’t put my finger on it.

* I do recall one instance where we were all asked about this, and someone who thought they were very clever puffed up and said they were a realist in a very smug way. I followed up saying I was a surrealist and that the glass was melting all over.