Secondary effects of mood stability

Content warning: diet, food

I’ve spent most of my life mitigating what many people call being “hangry.” That is to say, whenever my blood sugar got too low, I would become incapacitated. I couldn’t solve challenges, I got mean in ways I simply am not the rest of the time, and I couldn’t track more than one thing (at most) at a time. I dealt with this by carrying snacks with me everywhere to prevent the onset, and I would get really quiet if I felt the symptoms setting in so I wouldn’t harm people around me. The more active I was being, the more often I would need to eat. To be someone who gets hangry (AKA “hypoglycemic”) is expensive, time consuming, injurious, and distracting. But it has been reality for all my life that I can remember.

There’s this human I’ve been dating for awhile named Reed. We like having conversations about difficult topics and going for long bicycle rides together, among other things. And I started to notice that he could know that he needed to eat, but still be a totally pleasant person and/or get the rest of a ride in before eating food. We talked about if that had always been the case for him – it hadn’t – and what had changed – his diet (keto).

“Seems worth a shot,” I thought to myself.

I’ve never been on a diet before. I’ve always been pretty physically active (although even more so in recent years) but haven’t paid attention to my food intake. I know I am rare in this, and give many thanks to my parents for a healthy home (no scale, no beauty magazines, healthy food only around, structure around sweets) in this regard. So I was worried about making it stick. I’m now 2 months in, and my mood has indeed stabilized.

This has been great. But there are also some second-order effects of this shift worth talking about. Continue reading


So as much as I love being in Seattle, I’ve been severely lacking in structure. Going from having the crazy-busy schedule in Bloomington to job hunting online (and occasionally on foot) and attempting to fill my own time has led to some mental ruts and general funks. So I started forcing myself out of the apartment, seeing friends, volunteering at events, etcetera.

Today I received a job offer, and while it’s not quite as much as I need to be making, it’s a start, and it’s at a really neat place. I can live off of it, which means getting my own place, a much-needed hair fix (I’m hoping we can get a stark white in with the blue, with some teal highlighting), and an even-more necessary gym membership.

I’ve also been keeping myself busy in other ways. Been spending a lot of time with various people. Today I’m going to Tilth with a friend visiting from NYC, then to a play another friend is in, and then likely the drinking. Tomorrow Nathan and I are going to see Rossum’s Universal Robots. This is neat because it’s the first time the Czech word for forced labor, “robota,” was adapted into noun form. Then Saturday I’m volunteering at Little Red Studio again. Last week I helped out for their production of Hello Penis, which is nothing like the name suggests but actually a pretty poignant play about what it is to be male in our culture, and all the expectations placed on you. Sunday is the volunteer cast party for SEAF (at which I looked this hot. Yes, that’s a privacy headset, the one that registers vocal chord vibrations).

I also went to the Fluevog store here in Seattle to buy these shoes:

Stevenson, the store manager, I know through Nathan and Kristen. He’s awesome and super friendly. When I went in with Anita to put my shoes on layaway (no, I don’t have my babies yet), I hugged Stevenson and he said “Willow, I want you to meet someone. This is John.” My response was, “you mean… like John? Um. Eep. Hi.”
So we had a lovely chat about the wedding he had just attended and Vancouver, and I met his very awesome wife, and he made sure the shoes fit right, and then he jokingly signed them. So after I gather another undisclosed amount of dollars, I will have a signed pair of what my brother describes as “sex with a sole” (actually, that comment refers to his pair, which are the hottest things ever).


That about wraps it up.

Oh yeah, I’ll be at Axis on the 24th. Come hug me.

wine snobs, cloned meat, and The Future

So there’s this whole cloned meat debate thing going on right now, or starting to happen.

And since I’ve been hanging out with wine geeks (and am becoming one myself), an interesting conversation relating to this has come up a few times.
The culture of wine has to do with being able to smell, taste, see where something has come from. Because it’s still just grapes. But you get all these different things out of it, which point you to what sort of life the grape vine had that year and the years before, that are complex enough that someone who’s good at it can name the varietal, vintage, and vineyard that a wine came from.
And while there’s not this sort of established culture around being able to tell what breed and area your steak is of, a recent article in Gourmet Magazine tied it in with wine in my mind.

See, there’s this thing called AOC. And part of why it was initially put into place was to keep emerging vineyards from taking business from established ones. (This is on my fairly limited research into a very complicated subject) Certain guidelines had to be met to obtain different levels of certification, giving legitimacy. Now these guidelines were initially pretty meaningless (as they were just meant to limit who could be labled as Fancy-Pants for getting all their grapes from one area of a specific region and going through the rest of the process in the same spot instead of pulling from grapes all over the place, mixing barrels, etc), but as wine making became more regulated and localized, the differences between regions became more noticeable, as well as more predictable. They’ve done the same thing with cheese, and now flour (the flour bit was what the article was on). Similar things are being suggested for beef if it’s to be of the non-cloned variety.
The guidelines don’t just mandate what type of grapes you use in what percentage in order to label your wine as a certain varietal, but also where they come from, how they are taken care of, harvested, etc. Cheese cultures can only come from the region that the cows/goats/sheep you’re milking for the cheese, etc. The flour has to be from grains in your region, ground in your region, etc. And the producers in these regions that adhere to the standards are government-subsidized.

The government is making it possible, even encouraging, these places to maintain a way of life which is basically a snapshot of when they were certified. We are building our Reservations (an idea described in Transmet).