[FRIAM] Friday AM

Marcus Daniels marcus at snoutfarm.com
Mon Jan 2 15:01:25 EST 2023

The last time I went in for a wellness check, the doctor seemed annoyed that I was there.   I left, humiliated.

But it has been a while, and I am wondering what it would take to actually learn something from a checkup.  Is there some standard package of broad blood tests and/or MRIs that would be a clue I was becoming gravely ill?  I was just shopping for new insurance and was excited to learn all the things I can prepare for (Aflac's various products).   What would I even ask for?

A few years ago, I had a car accident on the snow in Santa Fe and had to have quite a bit of work done on my car.   I have to say billing the insurance for that was very satisfying.  I had been paying all these years and had nothing to show for it.   It is especially true for my medical coverage.

To me going to the doctor is just an opportunity to get COVID-19 in the waiting room.  How can I get more from this experience?


From: Friam <friam-bounces at redfish.com> on behalf of glen <gepropella at gmail.com>
Sent: Monday, January 2, 2023 9:48 AM
To: friam at redfish.com <friam at redfish.com>
Subject: Re: [FRIAM] Friday AM

I've mostly been neutral about "the holidays". But as I age and my productivity tanks, I look upon all the little "reports" we get from friends and family with increasing sadness. It used to simply feel odd that "The So-and-so Family" year end report talked about how little Bobby has taken his amateur anime to new heights or whatever. But now it feels less odd, more normal ... and more digusting somehow. I guess it's a bit like the difference between the haughty _curriculum vitae_ and the more pedestrian, reflective, _résumé_.

I went in for a "wellness check" with my GP group the other day. Don't ask me what they mean by "wellness check". I don't know. But because I don't really care which GP of the group sees me, this was a new one. She asked me that bane of the cocktail party question "Tell me about yourself." WTF?!? I *should* have said something like "I want to be an apocalyptic nomad and you breeder/settler types annoy the hell out of me." (She's pregnant with a 1st kid at home.) I might have, had we been at a cocktail party. Instead I just hemmed and hawed and asked her what she wanted to know, specifically. [sigh] It ended the typical way. You drink too much. You're too fat. Your cholesterol's too high. Yaddayaddayadda. Nothing to see here. Move along.

I think the problem is I haven't been to a job interview in a while. Maybe that's what I should do this year ... try to line up a few job interviews so I'm forced to practice my narrative self elevator pitch.

Happy New Year, y'all.

On 12/30/22 16:36, Steve Smith wrote:
> On 12/30/22 1:32 PM, glen wrote:
>> Interesting tangent. As always, I only post when I feel like I have something to disagree with (or fine-tune in a way that might seem contrarian). I feel like the closing on whim or choosing hours that may be inconvenient for a population is how we *should* do business. There's nothing more inhuman/inhumane than, say, shopping at Safeway at 2am because you *know* a multinational corporation is trying to squeeze that last blood from the market (and its employees).
>> Convenience is one face of the Janus. Another is the optimized self ... e.g. tracking your footsteps to make sure you get them all in for the day ... or counting calories ... or Amazon-style, Taylorist "quantified self". *In*convenience is life. Attempts to avoid it are akin to suicide. And inconvenience is also pro-social. There's nothing more inconvenient than providing social support for a fellow human, sick puppy, or diseased ecosystem.
>> So, when I see a "gone fishing" sign on a local business, I get a bit of a dopamine kick. Good for you, dude.
> It might also be worth noting that this "renormalization" leaves room for excellence...  surely there will be *some* small businesses and individuals who will excel by striving to expand or refine their "value proposition"...
> I can see silver linings throughout but I  think there will be "ringing" in many dimensions. As for me, I am happy with my new "lowered expectations" and even, as you suggest, can applaud a "gone fishing" sign...
> My own interests in optimization tend toward expanding circles of context... in my youth (at least into my 30s) the circle was rarely much larger than my self, my nuclear family, my neighborhood, my workplace. Nowadays it has become dizzyingly large and too often abstract... probably to the point of absurdity and ineffectuality.
>   It was safer and perhaps saner when I limited my optimization ideations to people and places I interacted with daily...   I also discovered "satisficing" vs "optimising"  in my 30s which was a significant relief, and allowed more degrees of freedom in my optimization/satisficing intentions/habits.
> "Good enough for who it's for" is a much better mantra, IMO than the usual "... for government work".
>> On 12/30/22 12:16, Steve Smith wrote:
>>>> OPT Cafe is closed as well. What a way to run a business this is peak Family dining out Time.
>>> A new phase of customer service seems to have emerged after COVID. I have ambiguous feelings about it.   Previously I was a little offended by various examples of businesses not catering well at all to their customer's needs/desires/convenience.   Los Alamos as a community is somewhat famous for this...  the "captive audience" and the myriad flexibilities of LANL employees lead to things like retail businesses only open from 9-5PM M-F such that anyone who can't get away from work at a whim simply not being able to do business there... or restaurants that are satisfied with a short M-F lunch hour and/or closing early (by urban standards) and leaving business on the table.
>>> With the hammering that service personnel took with COVID (in spite of the myriad relief programs) as well as small-business owners (which can include franchise operators) I have been pretty sympathetic with businesses unable to return to the (sometimes generous) hours and services they kept before COVID.    I would certainly *like* to see the rich range of available services out there return to "normal" but also appreciate that the most vulnerable folks aren't out there 'hurting themselves' to meet my whims.
>>> The implications of spiking minimum wages and prices and corporate usury, disaster profiteering are all over the place for me... I think there will be a lot more "ringing in the system" left to be experienced in the aftermath of COVID.

ꙮ Mɥǝu ǝlǝdɥɐuʇs ɟᴉƃɥʇ' ʇɥǝ ƃɹɐss snɟɟǝɹs˙ ꙮ

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