i had a weird dream, about working in an office and suddenly half the people are gone, away at an important meeting, leaving just the new hires behind. in this dream i should be in the meeting as well but they forgot to let me know. signs look dire as only the veteran employees were called to this meeting, and my gut tells me it's to discuss the future of the company, which might be closing. is it coronavirus-related? i don't remember. but when the meeting is over, one of the meeting attendant tells me i'll be compensate for the time i've worked for the company.
in the age of coronavirus, seems like everyone is a little paranoid when it comes to the slightest infection symptoms. for me, i have a slight cough that comes most often after i eat something, and it's not so much a persistent cough as it is a throat clearing. a simple cough drop takes care of it (i go through about 4 a day). my nose also gets a little runny on occasions, most often when i just wake up, or after meals, and usually one blow of the kleenex is all i need. earlier today when i was in the bathroom i felt a slight discomfort in my throat, but it disappeared soon afterwards. last night something weird happened, my sinuses got really clear, like the kind of clarity you get when you're on decongestants or maybe eating something minty. it was kind of thrilling, but today my sinuses went back to its usual muffled state.
i try to take care of myself. i wash my hands whenever i've been outside, and a few times during the day when i'm indoors too. i drink plenty of water, so much so that i go to the bathroom nearly every hour. i go to bed early, as getting a good night's rest is the best thing for the immune system. there's no reason to stay up late anyway, now that with all the late night talk shows are on indefinite hiatus. not even the evening news is worth staying up for, since it's mostly coronavirus coverage, as if nothing is happening locally anymore, apart from the weather and the latest brady news. i can be in bed as early as 9pm, just a few hours after dinner. of course i'm not sleeping right away, either watching a movie stream, surfing the web, or reading a book. the one i'm reading now is influenza: the hundred year hunt to cure the deadliest disease in history by jeremy brown (published 2018). it's straight up deja vu, everything the book describes is happening now, like a coronavirus playbook about a pandemic that happened a century ago.
i spent some time calling comcast today. first to get a flex box for my parents' place, which was supposed to arrive last week, but apparently never shipped. i then called again to see if i could lower the internet bill at my sister's place. they didn't seem to have the 100Mbps $60/month deal anymore, but they did have the 300Mbps $70/month deal with a 2-year contract and price guarantee of 3 years. i almost agreed ($8/month cheaper than what we pay now) but i think i can call again and try to find an operator who can give me the $60/month deal.
i had a chobani blueberry yogurt for breakfast. typically i don't eat breakfast, but just to give the predict 2 study more data points to play with, i'm doing breakfast as well until the weekend. this is the first day with no set meals, i can finally eat whatever i want, morning until night, just have to log everything.
kevin started making his lunch around 11:30am, i let him finish before i started my lunch. he was stirfrying some vegetables, the sounds of sizzling oil making me nervous. but it wasn't smoky and he used the large flat-bottom wok (he learned about this piece of kitchen just last week) so the splatter wasn't going anywhere. he finally finished cooking by 12:30pm.
instead of an english muffin i upgraded to an everything bagel sandwich for lunch. same ingredients as last time - fried egg, virginia ham - but instead of pesto, i used half an avocado, then drizzled sriracha sauce over everything. it was a decadent sandwich, so good it felt like store-bought, one of the best homemade things i've eaten since the coronavirus quarantine.
i got in touch with john, who told me he and his family were shacked up in the hamptons, riding out the coronavirus. yesterday i chatted briefly with frances, who told me the malls were still open in norway. i got in touch with eliza in paris, still no word back yet.
the rest of the afternoon kevin did his thing, i did mine. he stayed in his room, sometimes with the door closed, sometimes with the door open. i stayed in the living room, parked in my deteriorating nearly 2-decade old ikea tullsta tube chair. actually, coronavirus quarantine is a lot like how i usually go about my day, except i'm less incline to go outside, and there's the constant background stress of knowing someone is home with me all the time. plus, there's the added strain of the predict 2 study, needing to log all my foods, spacing out my meals and snacks at least 2 hours apart, and generally not being able to eat whatever i want whenever. by sunday it'll all be over though, saturday is the last day of the study. only other thing i need to do is visit the arlington question diagnostics lab and get my blood drawn.
i called my parents when i saw the expensive moutai had been opened in the dining room. apparently my father in a fit of anger when my mother said he couldn't have anymore wine tore open the 30+ year old moutai to drink. my mother also showed me the white gardenia flower that'd bloomed yesterday. currently in the living room, she said it was very fragrant.
in the afternoon i made a fruit smoothie to see how my body would react. i learned that drinking a freezing cold beverage makes me cough. after i finished the smoothie, i quickly made myself some tea.
a big box arrived on the doorstep, had to be kevin's. not only was it big but heavy too, and i figured maybe he ordered more bags of rice in addition to the 40 lbs. he already has. but turns out it was 20 lbs. worth of dehydrated vegetables. when told me "dried vegetables" i was thinking something more in the lines of pickled vegetables, not actually dehydrated. it reminded me of fish flakes, or animal feed, or something you'd line the bottom of a gerbil cage.
while looking at my aquarium, i noticed i now only have 4 tetras. i thought i had 5 yesterday, maybe i accidentally killed one during the water change yesterday. i got these fish september 2017, so they're just 2-1/2 years old. that may seem like a long time but tetras have surprising longevity, with a life span of a decade. originally i bought 11, but their numbers have dwindled since then. once all the fish are gone, i might retire the fish tank for good.
something happened today around the evening news. ever since last week, when trump has been giving his daily coronavirus briefings, all the networks carry it. he does it right during the evening news - whether that's strategic or just when everyone's available - and serves up an hour of his usual pontifications and lies, flanked by bored experts who have no reason to be there and not observing the safe social distancing lengths at all. these are trump's new rallies now that he can no longer hold his usual big crowd rallies. but tonight our local WCVB channel 5 decided not to carry the briefing, but instead broadcast the regular news instead, which is more important locally anyway. they did move their broadcast to their sister station channel 5.2. i expect more local channels to do the same, as people start getting bored with these briefings, or just don't want to watch trump kabuki theater hour.
i started making dinner around 6pm: quiche! i first logged in all the ingredients before i did anything, then put the frozen spinach in the microwave to thaw (i forgot to thaw it this morning) as well as the ready made pie crust. kevin - though he had his dinner ready from when he made his lunch - made dinner again. he was trying to test out his dehydrated vegetables, cooked 2 cups of the stuff along with some pasta. i sampled the hydrated vegetables, it actually wasn't that bad, just a bit bland, and more on the sweet side of things because of the hydrated carrots. he kept adding different sauces into the pot until he had something with some flavors.
i'd forgotten how long a quiche actually takes to make, completely forgot about the bake time, and then the wait time to allow the cheese pie to cool down. i didn't eat until almost 9pm, and by then i was so hungry, anything would've been good.
earlier in the evening kevin said he was going to go to the bank. "if you're thinking about getting cash to pay the rent, we could try paypal if you want," i told him. i then helped him set up his paypal account. he tried using a debit card, but the fee was over $20 for the transfer. i told him to use his actual bank account instead. but that's when i realized if he wired me money via paypal, he'd see my paypal email, which would reveal the existence of this here website. i tried to talk him out of it, said maybe a check would be better, but he wanted to try paypal. so i temporarily disabled my weblog and changed my paypal e-mail address. when he tried to link his bank account to paypal, his bank sent him a verification text message but he couldn't receive it. i told him he could also write me a check. the concept of checks is completely foreign in china, and when he created his checking account and they asked him if he wanted checks, he said no. so we're back to square one; he said tomorrow he might go down to harvard square and get the money from the bank.
later in the evening i heard repeatedly thumping sounds coming from kevin's bedroom, as he was exercising. i was going to say something (like: "don't smash your weights into my walls") but decided it wasn't worth the effort. can't fight every battle, can't win every fight.