Monthly Archives: May 2014

Sick, again??

Yep, this is something like the fifth or sixth time I’ve been sick this year. I don’t know why, because I usually have a pretty good immune system, but this year it seems to be on vacation.

I went to the doctor this morning. They’re having some very serious computer issues, so I couldn’t get an appointment, but I could walk in, so I did. It went fairly fast, which was nice, because I didn’t sleep much last night, and I walked out with a prescription for a Z-pak. I love those things. It’s 5 days worth of azithromycin, two on the first day, then one for the four days after that. And they’re not terribly expensive, which was nice.

I needed something to drink, so we stopped at Wendy’s. They have “homemade” lemonade, which I didn’t know about, and which apparently contains real lemons. I got that and a Frosty, because my throat still hurts like crazy, and when I got home, I had a slice of leftover pizza, half the lemonade, and my Frosty, then went back to bed. I slept pretty well, but I was woken up by the pain again in the afternoon.

I hope the antibiotics kick in soon. I’ve been taking generic Aleve to help with the pain, but it doesn’t do much. Ben has physical therapy tonight, so we’re looking at Wendy’s again, since chili and a Frosty sound really good to me. We got a keytag for $2 that means we get a free junior Frosty with every order, and that seems to help calm down my throat and ears, so it’s a win-win. At this point, I’m waiting for UPS to show up with my Amazon order, then the food, and as soon as I eat and get Ben to bed, I’m planning to crash again. Whether this actually happens remains to be seen, however…. my plans have a way of going awry all too often.

Amazon.com : Tuscan Whole Milk, 1 Gallon, 128 fl oz : Grocery & Gourmet Food

Amazon.com : Tuscan Whole Milk, 1 Gallon, 128 fl oz : Grocery & Gourmet Food.

This is really goofy. The reviews are hilarious. I admit I clicked on it in the first place out of curiosity, because it doesn’t seem like Amazon would be able to deliver milk without it going bad (unless it was in aseptic packs, which I do see that they have). I don’t have to worry, though… some intrepid souls even guarantee hand-delivery in the “seller” options.

If you’re bored and amused by human inventiveness, give these reviews and questions a look.

I’m tired.

I’m not sure why I’m so tired, except that there is a lot going on at home. Ben got sent home from school yesterday because he wasn’t controlling himself, so we picked him up and ran errands. We took him to the running store, and he was awful,arguing over everything and wandering around and touching everything. We didn’t end up spending $70 on shoes, because that’s ridiculous for kids’ shoes. For adult running shoes, it’s a little different, because they’re going to be used correctly and the runner won’t outgrow them.

We got bedding for Alex, who will be here a week from Thursday, if all goes well. That was a good thing, especially since it wasn’t too expensive. It’s purple, but the choice was between that and pink. I think he’ll be happy that we also got some laser tag kits on clearance.

When we got home from all of our running around, I noticed that my left ear felt weird, inside my head. It’s still feeling weird, dry and painful, but less so now that I’ve drunk half a gallon of iced tea. I’m hoping it’s just allergies and it’ll go away, because I didn’t sleep well with the pain.

Nothing profound going on here, just life. The weather’s been nice, but temperatures have bounced around over a 40 degree range, so my joints are unhappy and letting me know it.

An Assortment of Things.

This post is kind of random, so it’ll be all over the place.

Ben got his teeth taken out.

My gap-toothed, curly-headed boy.

Ben’s new smile

He said it didn’t hurt, and he was so very relaxed afterward. Nitrous is wonderful. If you care to, you can see his “big” tooth behind the vacated spots, off to the right. I’m personally kind of squeamish about teeth, as I’ve discussed before, so this is the most I’ve looked at the whole thing. I guess I’m ok as long as it’s on a screen.

He got to take his teeth home, and the dentist’s office even had a little holder for the teeth, and packaged that up with some gauze if he needs or wants it. I haven’t been brave enough to look at the actual teeth yet, and I probably won’t for a while.

He was so cute as we were driving. He asked, “Mom, do you know what the Tooth Fairy looks like?” I told him I didn’t, since I’d never seen her, just talked to her on the phone. “Oh. When you see her, will you ask her where she lives?” He comes up with the most interesting questions!

I dislocated my thumb last night, so I’m wearing a brace, which makes typing a challenge. It’s a very frustrating thing; I can shoot a shotgun without dislocating my shoulder, but sleeping will do it. I dislocated my thumb from the extended pressure of holding my tablet. Mar said when he gets paid, I can get this tablet cover:

It has a strap to make holding the tablet easier. I love my tablet, but its big drawback is that it’s fairly heavy, at almost a pound. I tried to make my own cover, but I got something wrong and it doesn’t hold my tablet in. I’ll probably revise it and figure out the details at some point, though. My current project is making myself a new bag. I can’t find one that fits all my specifications, like “big enough to carry my tablet” and “with a long enough strap that it falls comfortably by my hip”. (I ¬†have a long torso, not that anyone could tell with all the padding.) The best part is that I have all the supplies; J gave me a bunch of fabric remnants she’d picked up, and there are two big pieces I’m going to use for the inside and the outside, and two long pieces I’m going to use for the strap. I do wish I had some way to make the strap adjustable, but I don’t, so I’ll make do.

Ben is hungry, so I’m going to go make veggie mac’n’cheese with crushed meatballs. The meatballs are done already, and they smell great! Aldi’s is a great place to shop.

Quiet Days.

The weather turned again, rainy and cold. I’ve been snuggled up with my tablet reading, mostly. I haven’t been playing any Fallout because I installed a story mod that I really don’t like, but I wasn’t paying attention and saved over the save just before I started it. The most recent one I have is back in Dead Money, and the end of that was so frustrating that I’ve been reluctant to do it over.

Ben had a field trip to the zoo today, which I forgot about, and they weren’t back in time for his dentist appointment. It’s rescheduled for next Wednesday, which will be a total blast…. I should cancel his physical therapy, since I don’t think he’ll be in any mood for it.

Mar seems to be doing OK. I can hear him yelling at Dark Souls 2 downstairs, but that seems to be his favorite activity lately.

I’ve been reading the Stephanie Plum books, by Janet Evanovich. They’re fun and they don’t require a lot of brain power, which is exactly what I need. When the weather changes, I end up hurting. This time its not just the arthritis, but the bursitis in my right hip. It’s times like this that I wish I had insurance so I could get pain meds and cortisone shots again. Ah, the glamour of EDS. As if that’s not enough, Ben put my cane somewhere and I can’t find it. Its a nice one, as far as canes go, leopard print and adjustable height, but sometimes it’s still kind of depressing that I’m 35 and need a cane.

Possibly something more cerebral later this week.

The Dark Side of Mother’s Day.

I hope everyone had a good day. I know for some of you, this can be a painful day; for some, it’s a reminder of the mother you miss, while for others it’s a reminder of what you never had. For some, it’s also a reminder of what they can’t have, that they’ll never be mothers. My heart goes out to all of you hurting on this Mother’s Day. Nobody talks about that, though. It’s all “mothers are the best, you should be thankful and tell her what a great job she’s doing and how much you appreciate her!”

But what if she’s not the beat, not doing a great or even mediocre job? Should you still be grateful? Or what if you want so badly to be a mother, so much that it’s a physical ache, but you just can’t for whatever reason? This is the dark side of Mother’s Day, the side nobody talks about.

For some, this day is a reminder that their beloved mother is no longer with them. I know that at least one of my friends is still mourning her mother’s passing, so today is probably very difficult for her. I imagine it’s even worse if a person had a complicated relationship with their mother; today can dredge up a myriad of emotions, including guilt, anger, shame, and frustration, even if one’s mother hasn’t passed.

Many people have extremely complicated relationships with their mothers. While it’s nice that there’s a day set aside to appreciate the hard work that mothers do, it’s also a painful day for many. I think acknowledging that is important. A dark side only festers if it is not exposed to the light.

Dead Money DLC – Ending

This DLC introduced me to some very unlikable characters. Dean Domino tried to backstab me, and Father Elijah was crazy and greedy beyond reason. Anyway, here’s the rest of the story.

We left off yesterday with the PC getting everyone to their places. Then she (my character’s female) had to get to the top of the bell tower, in the north “Sunrise” (it’s “[something] Del Sol” in Spanish, but I can’t remember which one was which) section of the villas. As a side note, Sinclair, the guy who paid for this place to be built, really screwed up with the architecture in the villas. It’s probably authentic (-ish), but the “streets” are so narrow that they’re almost claustrophobic. To keep people in a good mood and willing to spend money, you need wide avenues to stroll along.

So. Suffice it to say that the place she had to get to was all the way across the villas, inevitably with more Ghost People between her and her destination. Another side note, the Ghost People are creepy and horrifying and pathetic, all at the same time, especially when you figure out what they are. Through terminal entries, you discover that the corrosive red mist that is in (some of) the streets originally came up through the ventilation system. Because it eats away at any exposed flesh, someone came up with an Auto-Doc harness system, kind of like a space suit that will give you stimpacks as needed. Great idea, but the cloud corroded the clasps shut on the suits… so the Ghost People are dead, but kept “alive” by the suits, which is why they can get back up after you “kill” them unless you dismember them.

They have a weird lurching sort of movement, which is slow enough to get away from; then they see you and they “zap” places by jumping, if they’re close enough to you. Ugh, it gives me the shivers. But if you just run past them, they take a second to figure out what’s going on, and by then at least some of them have forgotten you. I know you were meant to sneak around them, but I’m just not patient enough to sneak. Maybe if I’d been smart and installed this mod, maybe it wouldn’t have been so frustrating, but I got really tired of trying to sneak past them and ending up in the middle of a mob. (The mod, as it explains on the page, changes the Ghost People’s Perception to 1 instead of 0; a Perception of 0 means that they basically have infinite Perception, and thus are impossible to sneak past.) This was, by the way, with a Sneak of at least 75, with an extra 10 on top of it from a sneak suit.

Back to the story. So she got to the top of the bell tower and triggered the Gala, and yay, the gates are open! Run and dodge through the narrow, twisting streets of the villas and there she was, inside the casino! And there are the other three! Wait, what? Why is the screen going dark?

She wakes up and Elijah’s yapping at her (the man dearly loves to hear his own voice), and you notice that the other three aren’t in the lobby anymore. And of course, there are speakers everywhere, which make your collar freak out. After a quick exploration, you discover that there are security holograms everywhere, but they’re not too tough to sneak past, and that there are four main doors leading to the lobby, but three of them are locked. You have to turn on the power to get the security to shut down, and of course this is really complicated.

There were a couple of puzzles, and eventually at the end I just made a run for it. There was kind of a red herring in one of the terminals, about an older lady who was walking on the rafters over the casino floor. I tried that, and the holograms still saw me, but at least it was only one of them. Once the power was back on, I had the opportunity to trade chips for pre-war money, which was nice, but whatever. I also found out (at some point) that the others had been transported to wherever the casino thought was most appropriate.

I headed to the Tampico Theater (I expected gallon jugs of “orange drink” of questionable nutrition, but alas, no) to find Dean Domino, since he was a big pre-War singing star, and discovered that the jackass was going to double-cross me. He hadn’t planned on me finding the backstage key, though (and damn that heavy curtain, it was practically a wall! ūüėõ ), nor had he thought I’d figure out his plans. He just kept flapping those ghouly lips, though, and he didn’t know that as long as I managed to get far enough away in a certain amount of time, my collar wouldn’t go off if he died. So, since my choices were to kill him or let him shoot me, I went with self-preservation.

Next I went looking for Christine, who had a voice again, yay! It wasn’t “her” voice though; she even commented that it “sounded like she’d been chain-smoking for years”, or something to that effect. She’d been transported to the suite belonging to Vera Keyes, Sinclair’s starlet girlfriend and the model for the hologram at the fountain, because her vocal cords had been healed to sound like Vera. Apparently Dean’s plan to break into the Vault was to make Christine sound like Vera, but it got interrupted. When I confronted Dean earlier, I found out that he was blackmailing Vera to steal the treasure (Treasure of the Sierra Madre) from Sinclair; he needed her, or at least her voice, to unlock the elevator down to the Vault. When talking to Christine, you find out that Vera had some sort of terminal illness, and her vast amounts of chem usage, primarily a combination of Med-X (morphine) and Super Stimpaks, were related to managing the pain.

The last member of the party, Dog/God, was transported to the kitchen of the casino’s restaurant, but there’s a gas leak and the doors won’t open! At least, not without finding the override key and going through the hotel entrance. You have to talk him down, because the room is absolutely swimming in gas and he’s about to trigger his collar, which will kill you because, well, you’re in the room full of gas. (I’m very glad for saves, because they’re not very clear that you have to talk to him NOW, and I tried to go around fixing the gas valves first. Not the best plan.) I managed to talk him down and work with him to integrate both personalities, but as a side effect, he didn’t remember most of what happened. I’m not sure what he calls himself now, either.

With everyone squared away (or blown away, DEAN), you splice together several audio tapes of Vera’s singing that you collected, so that she can “speak” the code to open up the elevator. Once down there, it’s a mess, and very tricky to get everything right, so I highly advise you save early and save often. I must have died fifteen different times, either from the character’s collar, or the security holograms, or falling off a catwalk into the Cloud/falling endlessly, or breathing the Cloud… but eventually I got there.

Right outside the Vault is a holotape (and Frederick Sinclair’s body, although I looked in the wrong place for it) to Vera, rather angry about her betrayal. Inside the Vault, however, was another letter to her on the terminal, saying that the Sierra Madre was to have been his gift to her, the Vault to protect her in case of war, but when he found out about her betrayal, he had set the Vault to trap her inside. He cautions her not to read the entry titled “Sinclair’s Personal Accounts”, which was still a trap, but set for Dean. He also explains that when he tried to set the security systems to let her out if she was indeed trapped, he couldn’t reverse the process.

Of course, right after reading this touching account, the PC is contacted by Elijah. (He’s such an ass. At one point he was complaining about how slow things were going, and I yelled out loud, “Then maybe you shouldn’t have put this stupid collar on me!” I got a funny look from Mar for that.) Anyway, the PC goads him into coming down to the Vault, which seems to take a bit of time. I put that time to good use by tossing most of my inventory, because the treasure of the Sierra Madre is a nearly obscene number of gold bars. At 35 pounds each, it’s very easy to get overburdened, and I didn’t want to let anything slow me down; my most important goal was getting out of there.

There’s a confrontation with Elijah, and then you have 60 seconds to get out… except that the short way isn’t available. You have to backtrack and get out using the same elevator you used to get in. I died at least three times in this section.

Eventually, though, I got to the elevator, and ended up back in the courtyard. This was the end of the content, but now I had free reign to explore the Villa. I didn’t explore much, though, just enough to get the snow globe. Then I went to the gate and left as fast as I could.

The tagline for the Sierra Madre Casino was “Begin Again – Let Go”, and that’s really the lesson that the PC has to take to heart. Yes, my character¬†left a lot of gold there… but it wasn’t worth her life. Apparently there were a lot of people who didn’t understand that.

There is one post-script to this DLC, though. Once back at the abandoned bunker, you can access Elijah’s terminal and download a voice log. If you go to the 188 and find Veronica, then exhaust her dialog tree regarding Elijah (it starts with “Tell me about yourself”), when you back out of that choice, you have the option to tell her that you found him, then give her the audio log. Optionally, you can tell her you found him and have her unlock the audio log, then keep it yourself. Whoever ends up with the audio log gets a bonus to their unarmed and melee combat, and if it’s Veronica, she has a melancholy commentary about it.

This was a nerve-wracking DLC, but overall, I liked it. The casino was very art deco, which is a style I appreciate, and it was interesting finding out the other characters’ stories. In retrospect, I should have done¬†Old World Blues first, then¬†Dead Money, then¬†Lonesome Road, because Christine mentions that Ulysses saved her from Elijah at the Big MT (although she simply calls him a courier; apparently she didn’t get his name), and that he had mentioned looking for another courier. It’s definitely him, because she mentions the flag he wears on his back. Additionally, some of the terminal entries mention the Big MT in regards to the suits that the Ghost People wear, and I believe Sinclair is mentioned as being connected to the experiments there, as well. Still, the story here was quite emotional, and I think it was well done.

Dead Money – Fallout: New Vegas DLC

I started Dead Money today. It’s giving me a headache, not because it’s hard, per se, but because it’s extremely tense.

The enemies are referred to as Ghost People, and they’re extremely hard to kill. They’re attracted to light and sound, so sneaking is the way to go… which is all well and good, but I¬†hate sneaking. I think it has something to do with how easy it is to get startled in that mode, and if there’s one thing I hate more than sneaking, it’s getting startled. I could avoid that adrenaline rush for the rest of my life and be happy.

The DLC starts in the abandoned BoS bunker near Camp Forlorn Hope. As you advance, you see a bright yet fuzzy light in the distance, but when you draw near, you’re knocked out, presumably by gas. When you wake up, you’re somewhere else and you don’t have your stuff. And, oh yeah, there’s a hologram yapping at you. Eventually you figure out that you’ve been teleported to the Sierra Madre Casino, or at least to the grounds. Your supplies got left behind because they had radiation on them. And the hologram talking to you is Veronica’s beloved Elijah, ordering you to do stuff. How can he order you? Because while you were knocked out, one of his agents put a radio collar around your neck, kind of like a slave collar. He informs you that you are going into the casino after you round up a little band of people and manage to get the casino doors open. You will be scavenging for him, and if you get any ideas about killing your team members, you’ll all die; he rigged the collars to all go off if one of you dies or gets too far from the group. Oh, and the collar will detonate if you get too close or spend too much time in the area of a radio or speaker. Conveniently, though, it will beep to let you know when you’re getting close, and beep faster if it’s getting close to exploding.

Well, with no other options, off you go. The first group member you find is Dog, or, as Elijah refers to him, “the FEV reject”. He’s a nightkin, a type of super-mutant, but he’s not aggressive toward the PC. Just to add more complication, Dog has another personality, God. God is intelligent and ¬†well-spoken but resentful toward Elijah and, as an extension, you. Balancing these personalities is a challenge.

The other interesting thing about Dog is that, when he’s the dominant personality, he will eat the limbs of the Ghost People. Since the Ghost People can… reincarnate? reanimate? get back up and start fighting, in any case, if they retain all their limbs, this trait is useful.

The second person you “recruit” is Christine. After a puzzle that involves shutting down a speaker system, you find her inside an Auto-Doc, a machine that looks like the single-person fallout shelters from Fallout 3 but which, obviously, heals you. At least, that’s the idea; this clearly didn’t go according to plan for Christine. She’s scarred and bald and mute, but with sign language you come to understand that the “bald” part was her choice. The scars are from some surgery she had, apparently at the hands of Elijah,¬†but the muteness is because the Auto-Doc cut her vocal cords. I can only speculate that she was screaming because she was trapped, and the “solution” is pretty horrifying.

Christine was a scribe with the Brotherhood of Steel, and she communicates that she came to the Sierra Madre looking for her girlfriend. Elijah is responsible for their separation, and I’m guessing she wants to kill him. To do that, we have to get inside the casino, since he got himself trapped.

The third and final member of the group is Dean Domino. He’s been ghoulified, and doesn’t look anything like his posters, seen on loading screens. He also seems to think he’s better than everyone else, referring to the PC and the people who came to the Sierra Madre before as “tourists”. He has a similar attitude toward Dog, but when he meets Christine, he tries to chat her up. (Given what I’ve read on the wiki, this is really disgusting. Sad, because I wanted to like him.)

He also knows the history of the Sierra Madre, as he knew the man who built it, and he knows the woman the hologram over the fountain is based on.

The next thing on your quest list is to get everyone to their places to start the Grand Opening Gala. It’s a light-and-music extravaganza that taxes the power system enough that the front doors can be opened, as the locks rely on electricity.

That’s as far as I’ve gotten; I still have to get Christine to her place. More when I’ve played more.

Lonesome Road DLC [spoilers]

I finished Lonesome Road, the Fallout: New Vegas DLC, and it was surprisingly emotional. I think I saved and reloaded three times, because the final choice tree was so difficult.

The basic story is that you’re drawn to the Divide by mysterious messages, such as “Go home, Courier Six”. I think there might have been a radio broadcast, but I could be mistaken. Anyway, you go through the canyon wreckage and find a land ravaged, by what you don’t know yet. You have to get through a missile silo, but you can’t decode the military encoding. But in a nearby room, you find… ED-E the Eyebot? No, not your ED-E, but a very good replica with his own history, which is revealed through audio logs at various times. As a nice addition, you can understand his beeping to a limited extent when he “talks”.

After unlocking the station to turn the power back on, you fight your way through the missile silo against robots and find the corpses of Marked Men, who look like ghouls from both the NCR and the Legion, but wear cobbled-together armor that looks like nothing in particular. Odd, but whatever. Then you get outside, and ED-E starts talking in a deep, disapproving voice and informs you that you caused all this destruction, and you will answer for it, and a lot of rambling symbol-laden ranting, but you are also informed of three very relevant things: first, the voice taking over ED-E is a courier named Ulysses; next, that the creatures living in the Divide were once men, but have become irradiated and insane, but not entirely ghoul-like, as they can still shoot at you; and last, that there is a laser detonator that can explode the nuclear warheads that are still around, and thus when you find it, you can clear a path to Ulysses.

Yay. Smart, angry ghouls who hate and attack anyone not like them. You set off into this ruined landscape, and I have to give credit where credit is due: the landscape FEELS oppressive. It’s not the same sort of oppressive as Fallout 3, at least not to me. In that case, the landscape seemed indifferent to people, not going out of its way to either help or hinder the PC. In the Divide, it feels like the land itself hates you, like Ulysses hates you, like the Marked Men hate you. Like every turn you’re going to find a mass of concrete and rebar blocking your path, and there’s no way around, just through.

At one point you have to go through a tunnel, and you keep hearing things skittering in the darkness, but when you turn, there’s nothing there. At least, not until you make the last turn, and suddenly you’re attacked by Tunnelers. They’re explained by Ulysses as something that lived beneath the ground, until the ground was split open by the warheads and they glimpsed the light. They’re somewhat hit-and-run fighters, but they’re also surprisingly tough. I found that the H & H Tools nailgun worked really well.

After traversing miles of this ruined, twisted terrain, you ¬†meet Ulysses. The conversation doesn’t go well, of course, and after you kill him and the Marked Men that appear, you have to try to stop the missile launch that he started, aimed at the Mojave and specifically at the NCR. There were several options: stop the launch completely, redirect the missiles at the Legion, or redirect the missiles at both NCR and the Legion. I think there were a couple more, but they clearly weren’t important enough for me to remember them. The snag is that when you choose “stop the launch”, the consequence was that ED-E would explode. There’s an audio log that outlines that during testing, the Eyebots could break military-grade encryption, but at the cost of overloading their circuits.

This decision was very tough for me. I despise the Legion, but if I aimed the missiles there, I’d be the same as Ulysses, punishing people who had no choice about being swallowed up by the Legion. On the other hand, wouldn’t it be better to be dead than be a slave? I could go back and forth on that one, and undoubtedly there are some who feel that way, but I couldn’t do it. Obviously I wasn’t going to blow up the NCR; I disagree with some of their decisions, but overall, I approve of them much more than the Legion. Which left the option of sacrificing ED-E, who had become a “he” to me fairly quickly, with a personality and a history and had become a companion. But that was the only real choice left to me.

I wish I could replay this DLC, because it was very well done, and I know I missed some stuff. There’s an achievement if you detonate all of the warheads, which I think I missed by three, and another one to find all the posters of RALPHIE, a robot that looks similar to an Eyebot and apparently was the star of a children’s show. And I missed finding the Courier’s Mile, an area that was hit by a warhead launched in the middle of the story. It sounds really depressing, but I like getting everything out of an area. I’m considering starting a new character and using the console to level her up to 25 just to replay Lonesome Road.

The combat was fairly challenging, especially near the end when the Marked Men were using Stealth Boys. I’ve found that overall, I prefer not to use VATS when I’m playing on PC, and that was very helpful when I¬†couldn’t use VATS on the Stealthed Marked Men. Even at the beginning, though, both the Marked Men and the Tunnelers required some strategy. Take LOTS of ammo. For close-up, the nail gun worked really well, and I found that the Sniper Rifle was my friend for dealing with enemies at a distance. The Marked Men have rocket launchers, so expect to be blown up and have limbs crippled. It says that level 25 and up is recommended, but I’d suggest your character be at the highest level you can manage before curiosity demands that you play.

Overall, it’s a very interesting and heart-wrenching DLC, and I would recommend it.

Doctor Day

As in “Day of Doctors”, not an actual doctor named Day.

We went to the pediatrician this morning, and got a referral to a rheumatologist to get a definitive diagnosis for Ben. I’m not sure why EDS falls to rheumatologists to diagnose, but it does, so within the week we should get a call to schedule an appointment.

I really like Ben’s pediatrician. She’s really good, knowledgeable, friendly but professional, and she’s not afraid to acknowledge that she doesn’t know something. We waited in the exam room for a bit, though not excessively long, and when she came in, she explained that she’d been looking up EDS because she didn’t know much about it.

We came back and hung around the house a little until the dental appointment. Mar took a nap, because neither of us slept much or well last night, and Ben snuggled with me while I edited and tested a radio mod for Fallout 3 called iPip. I finally got it working, so that was nice.

The dentist appointment was much easier than I was worried it would be, mostly because they took Ben back by himself and I didn’t have to be in the room. I gave the nurse/hygenist the EDS information I’d printed out, and she actually read it, which was nice. They used nitrous, and she said it worked really well; they put the mask on him and he asked, “What’s that funny smell?” and then just went boneless, for the most part. She mentioned the adult tooth that’s taken up residence, and explained how the process of them coming in works. Apparently, the adult teeth somehow “saw” through the roots of the baby teeth, and that’s how the baby teeth fall out. That makes sense to me, because the adult tooth Ben has is lightly serrated, but actual adult front teeth aren’t.

Anyway, he has an appointment to get both bottom front teeth pulled next week, to make room for that rather large adult tooth. I am somewhat optimistic about his tooth moving into place well, because EDS lends itself well to teeth moving, and even if he does need braces, they should work fairly quickly, though he’ll have to wear a retainer for longer than usual. Six of one, half dozen of the other, I suppose, although it sounds like it will be less painful this way, with a shorter amount of time needed to actually¬†move the teeth. They just require more persuasion to stay where they’re put.

By the way, if anyone is curious about EDS and the things I printed out, I can do an entry about it and about my experiences with it. Google can tell you the clinical information; how it actually impacts day-to-day living is a bit harder to understand.

In geekery news, I ordered my tablet! We came into a windfall and I ordered an off-brand tablet (Latte, for the inquiring minds) as my Mother’s Day present. It came in and it was pretty good for what I wanted, which was internet and e-book reading, although it was a little slow. Still, no big deal; I could work with it, and it was a lot easier to type on than my phone. I got up the next day and things seemed fine, but I glanced over and the screen was flashing. I unplugged it from the charger and tried to turn it on, then plugged it in and tried to turn it on, and… nope. So I returned it. I sent it back Monday and got my refund from Amazon today, which is pretty impressive to me.

One of my online friends had sent me a link for a Lenovo ThinkTab, refurbished by Lenovo, that was $9 more than the no-name tablet, with free shipping (from nomorerack.com, who I’d never ordered from before, but I trust the friend that recommended it). Even better, it’s a bigger screen, a quad core, and double the memory. The website said “we¬†ask that you allow 10-14 working days for shipment. Although, often times, items ship much faster than this.” I certainly hope so; I’m excited to get it! Once I have it, I might attempt making a cover for it. I remember seeing a tutorial somewhere online, and it didn’t seem outside my skill level. Yes, I know, I have other projects in various stages, but this is something I can do when the weather isn’t conducive to painting. I think I have enough fabric remnants to make something nice, but I’ll have to figure out how to get some thin but sturdy flat plastic. Maybe plastic canvas? Something to think about.