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Posts by Kate Paulk

Blurring into undifferentiated mush

I’m seriously losing track of things here. I’m managing to mostly keep up with what day it is, but what week it is is a different matter. Even with a calendar open and my computer showing me the date I needed three tries to find the correct week.

I think what passes for my brain is rotting.

That said, I do like the benefits of working from home – the commute that consists of turning the work computer on in the morning and turning it off in the evening, getting loved by whichever cat has decided he or she needs attention, having a nice view out the window… The problem, such as it is, is that I never really set up to work from home as a semi-permanent thing. I have the work laptop on my desk beside my keyboard and monitor, and it’s not really the best possible position or particularly ergonomic.

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What Your Rulers Should Not Do In A Crisis

Because I’ve had entirely too much experience with this in the last week – before that as well, but particularly this last week.

So, your fiction is going along nicely, and your plot requires that something terrible happens causing a great crisis in the land/empire/whatever. The person (or whatever) in charge has to make decisions about how to handle said crisis.

If said leader is supposed to be competent, there are some things that you should absolutely avoid.

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Culture and the Writer

A mistake that creeps in to a lot of work is the monoculture – the whole idea that all  x share the same views and culture. That tends to tag onto the notion that culture is both somehow genetic and consists of interesting costumes and food.

I can’t really blame schools for this, not entirely, since they don’t have the time to go into the details enough to cover much more than interesting costumes and food, and not many people are capable of twisting their mind through the kind of maneuvers that let a person have a decent grasp of how a different culture works.

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Life Goes On

So, week six since the US went insane, and not much has changed here. I will admit to liking working remotely enough to have asked my manager what chance he thinks there is of the Boss of Bosses okaying work from home two or three days a week. His answer is somewhere near zero – it has to do with the dynamics of a company that grew from a control freak founder and still largely has the mindset that bums on seats equals productivity.

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Another Week

Nothing much has changed at the House of Paulk. The Husband’s job appears to be having him work alternate weeks, mine has me remote until mid May at the earliest, the cats are rambunctious and I’ve decided that the next time I get a new work laptop, it must have a side-mounted on switch to protect it from feline shutdowns.

Oh, and I should probably order a new network cable from Amazon, because the little plastic doovy that keeps it sitting in the port until you press down on it has broken off which means every time the cats get excessively frisky my work machine gets disconnected. So, yeah, several times a day.

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The Madness… oh, come ON!

So it’s now week 4, at least for me. And yes, it’s getting ugly – but I still think the ugly has more to do with the mandatory lock up than with anything else. I mean, the last time I looked my state has 1/6 of the estimated workforce having applied for unemployment, and that money has to come from somewhere.

Unlike some folks seem to believe, money always has to come from somewhere. When governments are involved, the somewhere is invariably taking it from someone else because governments do not produce.

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Ye Madness Continueth

Here in PA life continues to be nuts. Supermarkets are… interesting. Items just drop out of stock seemingly at random – with the exception of toilet paper, which I’ve yet to see in stock. Thankfully we at Casa Paulk are well stocked right now.

The Husband is back at work, although we don’t know how long it will last. Shipping management isn’t exactly amenable to working from home, so obviously he doesn’t.

Meanwhile, the numbers being reported continue to resemble “flu season” rather more than “black death” (you can tell I’m surprised by this, right? (Yes, that is sarcasm)). Honestly, if I were an evil ruler, something like this would be an absolute delight.

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