Back on May 2, 2016 I mentioned that I had three interviews with large technical recruitment firm, a large on-line retailer, and a medium-sized software company. None of these panned out, except to start my new collection of what we used to call "FOAD letters" back when they came in the postal mail. "FOAD email" doesn't have the same ring to it. Of course, the communication is excruciatingly polite, in the manner of all Human Resources template comms in the 21st century. The interviewers enjoyed getting to know me and they appreciate my interest. I was a very strong candidate but after careful consideration, they will not be moving forward with an offer. Now, reassuringly, they will keep my resume on file so that I may be considered for other opportunities in the future. Heh—nothing like some pipe linking* to work off the residual bitterness.

In health news the deep venous thrombosis in my thigh seems to have released, diminishing the pain in my leg but not the swelling. In fact my ankle and foot have gotten worse, yielding a new diagnosis of Postthrombotic Syndrome (PTS)**. I can walk fine now, but my left shoe doesn't fit. I'll write something about PTS once I learn a bit more. My new fashion accessory will be a compression sock for the foreseeable future. Yay. But at least it's not something truly awful, and testing to date suggests that this adventure is not being brought to me by the letter C, so I'm grateful for that. It's easier to deal with an annoyance when you consider how much worse it could be. Of course I'm grateful that I'm not going through anything as traumatic as The Custodian's adventure in Bariatric Surgery 2016 either, and I wish him strength in that battle.

So my "extended vacation" continues, though I had two decent HR-led phone screens on Tuesday, and I am cautiously optimistic that one or both will yield an on-site interview. In the meantime I'm wrapping up an on-line course in project management and eyeballing the Scala books I picked up at the library as my next project. Meanwhile, the SciFiQuest 3016 story that Leeves, the Yard Valet was the prep-work for stubbornly refuses to jell. Not so much writer's block as my inability to make it flow. This, in turn, blocks me from coming up with anything for Miniquest #2, and then I go off and read io9 and nothing at all gets accomplished. Feh.

mauler's The State of the Race poll doesn't allow me to choose "I live outside the United States and am deeply terrified of most possible outcomes," so I chose other, which became funnier when the CBS Sports poll that omitted the Toronto Raptors led to the day-long paroxysm of #WeTheOther outrage in Toronto. TheAnglican's ongoing updates about the 2016 United States Election are a great read for me, offering a perspective I don't see from my available Canadian media sources. Ah, but how I wish we could have dannye's unique perspective on those same doings.

Up in the north, our "sunny ways" Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in hot water for manhandling opposition MPs during a fractious vote, including elbowing MP Ruth Ellen Brosseau aside. Thus our heretofore affable Prime Minister displays a most non-parliamentary truculence which has set the twittersphere alight. Sadly the nastiness has also completely pushed the progressive transgender rights bill and the Komagata Maru apology right out of the news cycle, when both deserved additional coverage and national attention. At least in central Canada, even our fascination with the ongoing Fort McMurray fire takes a back seat to this unexpected and bizarre occurrence.

* I'd like to thank the invaluable "link view" for its assistance with laying pipe links in this writeup. It also shows several opportunities to spin useful factuals off of the hard links in this writeup!
** Wow. e2 may have a lot of odd gaps, but it sure knows a lot about different syndromes (but apparently not about the The Incredibles villain).

I am dealing with what I have come to realize is a bit of an epiphany.

So I’ve been going out to bars/restaurants with people and having water while they eat/drink. I’ve been sitting with people at office having lunch. Half-facetiously, I’ve been asking to borrow their food and booze to take a deep sniff of it to ‘practice’, to steel myself for doing this.

I’ve realized something fucking mindboggling.

In the entirety of my memory, maybe my entire life, I have never, ever, not once, not been hungry.

I say this because I’m not hungry now, and it’s something I’ve never before experienced.

When you’re hungry and you smell food, there’s that instant hindbrain connection that starts you salivating, makes it smell amaaaaazing, etc. etc. I had assumed this always, always, always happened, and always at full intensity.

The only times I’ve not eaten have always been because some countervailing but unrelated factor was stronger. Guilt. Pain because I’d just finished a meal and my stomach was distended. The desire not to puke in the restaurant from overeating. Maybe I was too drunk.

Every single time in my life I’ve not eaten something when presented with the possibility - from being offered a burger to walking past a Chinese restaurant and sniffing the air - I’ve literally been fighting with myself.

But never, not ever, did I not passionately and physically want to eat the food right then.

So for the first time in my memory, I’m Not. Fucking. Hungry.

I am now facing precisely how physically broken my body is/was.

I spent my life in a sea of fucking misery as a failure, because I was treating every single time I came across food as a separate and unrelated test of will. I considered that every time I ate food I didn’t need to eat, I failed. There were no successes. Ever. Because if I managed not to eat it, I told myself, ‘oh, I’m not hungry.’

Bullshit. I was hungry. And I chose not to eat it. And I won the fight way more often than I lost. But the wins weren’t wins, because I understood the phrase ‘not hungry’ as ‘chose not to eat.’ And that’s what normal people did when they weren’t hungry.

I feel like a goddamn methhead who just got hit with a dose of Narcan, and for maybe 30 minutes the drug has absolutely no physical hold on me. I’m realizing that I’m eating things when I eat them purely because my brain is telling me to eat. I’m struggling to eat more than 400-600 calories a day because that plus guilt plus the desire not to ‘waste the honeymoon period’ which they talk about after the surgery is so strong.

Now I’m fucking petrified that when the honeymoon period is over, the hunger will come back the way it was before, and the only weapon I’ll have is the restrictive quality of the surgery.

30 years of being an utter failure every day. Every. Single. Day.

(I mean, I still feel I'm a failure, but I hadn’t even thought about how much of it was due to that, it was just like air. Every day.)

This is weird.

Weight: 298.7

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