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10 August 2012 @ 12:41 am
Strafing-run-style update...  
We got back from vacation on Monday, and discovered that our troubled fridge/freezer tried to commit suicide while we were gone. Big puddle on the floor, raised linoleum, and no ability to open the freezer door. HalfshellHusband spent two days with a hair dryer and a butter knife, talking it down off the ledge. Food in coolers all through the laundry room, and we lost most of what was in the freezer. Now that the glacier is out of the freezer, we've powered the thing on and have the fridge half back. HSH is awaiting a part he needs to fix the freezer... but I'm ready to be done with this sucker. It's 22+ years old, and it's failing on us more than once a year. Ugh.

We visited family, and did all of our usual things in Portland and Eugene. No running at Tryon Creek, though—we had to stay at a motel, and it was just too far away. We saw MiB 3, which was much funnier than we expected. We watched a lot of the Olympics (too much beach volleyball!), and none of the DVDs we'd brought except for the kid-appropriate Bride And Prejudice. That was actually a re-watch, but it had been about 7 or 8 years. I still remembered the tunes from the first time, though. ;)

No Interwebs to speak of, which gets frustrating when you're trying to do online shopping for two kids' birthdays. I read The Coffin Dancer (another really good Lincoln Rhyme novel) during gym workouts, and finished The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks over the last few days. I rarely read or like nonfiction much, so the compelling need to finish that (overdue and on-hold) book should tell you something!

Besides the fridge, we've had both kids' school orientations this week, my daughter's birthday party today, and HalfshellHusband's initial hip surgery is on Saturday. That is not the hip-replacement surgery that was originally planned. His surgeon is wimping out and doing some stupid preliminary removal of the steel plate and screws as a test of how much HSH's muscles are going to fight him. We've already told him: a LOT. He needs to seriously investigate alternate methods to quiet/reduce the spasms, because the general anaesthesia isn't going to do that. I'm afraid he'll get in there, discover that it's as horrifying as he's been told, and then decide not to do the followup replacement surgery down the road. :(

In other news: I'm about 1 month behind on my friends-list, so I've missed a lot of important updates and news. I apologize if I've missed yours, and will try to catch up as much as I can.

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Vice Captain of the Universesweeny_todd on August 10th, 2012 10:27 am (UTC)
I actually want to see MiB3! It looks quite enjoyable!!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 05:11 pm (UTC)
Do it! It was funny, and some of the digs at pop culture (including past pop culture) were priceless.

Boy, I love those movies. Anything that refers to trash rags like The National Inquirer as "the best investigative journalism on the planet" hits my humor buttons extremely well. :D
similiesslipsimiliesslip on August 10th, 2012 02:08 pm (UTC)
I really liked the Herietta Lacks book. I think it's sad that the family suffered so much though but I'm glad the book was written. It was really well done. It made me think a lot about things like who owns the blood you send for testing etc.

My 3 kids have their orientations next week.

I'm sad for you about the hip thing for your husband. I hope things change somewhow and they do the real surgery early.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 05:17 pm (UTC)
One of the things I didn't understand, before reading the book, was why her family was so upset. Nobody plans to keep biopsy tissue for themselves (it's a medical waste product), and the snowball effect of what happened with those cells was an unexpected miracle. But the two main things that became clear was that her family really didn't understand cellular science or what any of that meant (are the cells the person, how do they perpetuate, how CAN they be used to advance science?), and that at some point laboratories were selling those cells to other labs (making a profit) while much of Henrietta's own family was impoverished and had health challenges. It was an unlucky combination, but the author really gave the family a voice and recreated the person behind the cells, and once you read that you know how much both of those things were deserved and needed.

Orientations: even next week seems too soon! Our school starts next Thursday, and as a parent and vacation planner, well... wouldn't you think Monday through Wednesday of next week would be the time to drag the families and kids in? Have some respect for other people's schedules!

When do your kids actually begin school? I've never gotten over it happening before Labor Day. :0
Port: all the gin jointsdesertport on August 10th, 2012 03:03 pm (UTC)
Ack! Sorry to hear about your fridge. I hate when that happens. After 22+ years, a new fridge might be a good investment, if only for the flooring. :/

I'll keep my fingers crossed for HSH's surgery. I hope it gets wrapped quickly and as painlessly as possible. *hugs*
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 05:20 pm (UTC)
I was walking barefoot in the kitchen this morning, and parts of the floor are more... bulgy... than they used to be. We might have to activate the insurance policy for some damage there. :(

The lineolum needs replacing, but no loss there. I'm more worried about the effects of water on whatever is down below that.

I'd really like HSH's surgeon to trim off the overnight stay. Our copays with Kaiser have gone up a lot this year (my office has gotten cheaper), and TWO surgeries where only one is needed is going to cost us. Argh. Plus, better to recover from a broken hip in August/September than in November, when everything's wet and slippery. :( :(
Lose 10 Pounds of Ugly Fat...  Cut Off Your Head.n3m3sis42 on August 10th, 2012 06:02 pm (UTC)
Ugh, that sucks about the hip surgery. I hope it goes better than you fear it will. :\
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 06:53 pm (UTC)
HSH just updated me that the surgeon is also evaluating whether he needs to make new tools to handle the replacement surgery.

Now, the fact that he's considering that means that he IS thinking. So that's a better sign. HSH suggested the surgeon write a paper afterwards, and the guy laughed. But honestly, there will be other people with this neuromuscular problem, and the issue will come up. Why not be the first to try to develop a good workaround?
cindytsuki_no_bara on August 10th, 2012 09:28 pm (UTC)
i was just flipping through the immortal life of henrietta lacks in the bookstore a couple days ago! it was good, huh? it looked really interesting but also kinda sad.

how can you have school orientation already? the month isn't even half over. yeek.

fingers crossed for hsh's surgery!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 09:55 pm (UTC)
It was kind of sad, but the family's story deserved to be told. The HeLa cells have done SO much for medicine, but their unexpected fame has also wounded her surviving family. I think the publication of that book has finally brought them peace.

School orientation... ugh. There's this obnoxious fad in our area to begin schools HECKA EARLY so that the high school kids will finish their first semester finals by Christmas break. Helloooo-- that's in DECEMBER. How about delaying the start of school instead, cutting out some of those teacher work days and the February "ski break," and having those tests be taken later so that the kids have time to regroup? Or--ooh, ooh!-- try the trimester system. It's not rocket science.

So, this year school begins on AUGUST FREAKIN' 16TH! Next year, they're targeting August 12. Kill me now.

Thanks for the good thoughts on the surgery!
Princess Robot Bubblegum!astrothsknot on August 10th, 2012 09:43 pm (UTC)
How much do freezers cost in the US?
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Yikeshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 09:57 pm (UTC)
A good model of the kind we'd want would be about $1500. He's balking at the hassle, the cost of removing and hauling off the built-in fridge that's there, and then cabinetry rework in the kitchen.

I.e., it's a mountain-out-of-molehill-based decision.

That fridge has ruined our kitchen floor, and caused us surprise grief again and again. I want it gone.

"But the part's only $50," HSH says.

Yeah? How much is fixing the floor going to cost? :(
Princess Robot Bubblegum!astrothsknot on August 10th, 2012 11:07 pm (UTC)
Sometimes you're just wasting money repairing things. Is the fridge one of those double door things? Because damn, white goods are expensive where you live.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 10th, 2012 11:26 pm (UTC)
It is-- it's the side-by-side door configuration, which honestly is the kind we like best. The top-freezer bottom-fridges are much less expensive, but we use a lot of freezer space. Always have. :0

I agree with you about wasting money repairing things. Cars eventually hit that point, and this is a 22-year-old fridge!