Monthly Archives of: December 2015


Exposé: I am Monkey

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I am Monkey.  A few years ago I was plucked from a basket of stuffed animals and adopted by a large striped grey cat named Gil Pender  (named after Owen Wilson’s character in Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris).  Gil Pender is a sensitive feline who is, as his vet diagnosed him, very maternal.  It’s like he believes himself to be the leader of a pride of lions.  Since the three humans in our house don’t always respond to his efforts to be herded into one room, (although a fair bit of the time they do) Gil Pender adopted me, a stuffed monkey with very long gangly limbs and a compliant manner.  If I remember correctly, I am the 7th Monkey. My re-generation occurs very much like Doctor Who – every so often my old tired body exits and a new version appears.  After re-generation occurs, I am the same Monkey, just a different color. I’m sure he’s noticed, but Gil Pender has politely never mentioned it.

Gil Pender takes very good care of me and always leaves me in very purposeful places.  None of the following photos were staged.  Gil Pender dropped me off in all these places for good reason:

No one is going to mess with me when I’m in the lap of this ginormous bear.


Two times Gil Pender left me in the care (and on the leg) of the lady of the house.

When Gil Pender is splitting his time between the first and second floors, I’ll be safely located halfway up the staircase.


When there’s no people around, I’m always given the whole couch to myself.  Gil Pender sleeps in a nearby chair.


And this time I was dropped off in an upstairs bedroom with The Lady of the House because The Man of the House was watching a very loud, very violent horror movie.  Not appropriate for Monkeys, I guess.  Maybe when I’m older.


I get the feeling that Gil Pender’s protective adoption of me is not a common occurrence amongst household pets.  In a world filled with reports of neglect and loneliness I thought my story might be worth recording.



Living Incurably Holiday Photo Edition

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Check out of the reindeer I created from a single branch found in the yard and two pieces of electrical tape.  I’m beyond proud of it, but no one else is as amazed so I suspect it’s one of those obsessions that occur when you stay home way more than anyone else in your household and your perspective starts to skew a little.

Bottom right is the snowy lemon squares I posted about the other day, and top right is the pasta we made from scratch Sunday (all ingredients we already had in the pantry).

Christmas parties.  Ready.  All stuff I already owned.

Making repurposed wrapping paper as a present for Mother Nature.  Packing paper from a delivery box + yogurt cups + acrylic paint (less than a dollar at craft stores).

All are welcome. All.


Hope you’re having as much fun as I am (for just as little money as I am!)



I really like being interviewed. Anyone else care to hear my thoughts? I’ve got lots.


I had an interesting conference call yesterday with some of the folks at a startup company named PillDrill.  They have been working on their invention for two years now and are looking to launch in 2016.  They had a bunch of questions for me about being young and chronically ill – my medication habits, experiences, etc.  It was fun speaking with them (in case you can’t tell I don’t mind sharing my opinion and talking about myself) and their product sounds quite intriguing.  It is a 7-day pill tray that in a variety of ways alerts you and tracks your medication intake. (EDIT: All the info connects to an app where you can enter prescription info and also view your info.)

It also offers an easy way to track your symptoms. See the little cube on the right?  It has different smiley faces on each side and you scan the side of the cube by passing it over the base that corresponds to how you’re feeling that day.  Favorite part.

When we talked I told them about the times I’ve screwed up my medication, how that happened and what the consequences were.  I also told them about how much I dislike parcelling out the pills into my pill planner once a week.  I worry I’m going to screw up again and have a horrible week, plus I just emotionally hate looking at all those pill bottles at once.  Their product couldn’t change that, of course but I did suggest that in their manual they suggest parcelling your pills in the morning when you’re sharp and then maybe some kind of little treat afterwards.  Like a cookie.  That would get me to do it at the proper time which would reduce mistakes.

We also talked about what kinds of symptoms I would keep track of.  Right now it would be headaches (my dry needling doctor always wants to know) plus my daytime sleep disorder episodes (which by the way was diagnosed as idiopathic hypersomnia + parisomnias, meaning falling asleep during the day at unwanted times + nighttime terrors/hallucinations).  A sister disease to narcolepsy.  I am interested to see how many of the little pods I would need though.  I take medications 4x time and right now I use 7 boxes, each box having 4 compartments – one compartment covers my whole day.  With PillDrill will I need 28 pods?  Also I keep thinking about the name “PillDrill.”  It doesn’t dazzle me.

If you have thoughts regarding how you take your medications or what symptoms you would keep track of, feel free to leave a comment (there’s a “Leave A Reply” command right at the beginning of this post)  and I’ll forward your opinions to PillDrill.  Maybe you’ll get to help shape their product and/or marketing campaign!