Onychophagia

Onychophagia - it's yummie with Raylex!
Raylex – it’s yummie!

Onychophagia

When asked about what their first memory is, most people recall something from the age 4 or 5. I remember vacations with family, crashing into my brother while we both gunned our BMX bikes through an alley on opposite sides and… onychophagia. I don’t recall how it began, but I know for sure it is an oral compulsory habit / parafunctional activity. So, what to do? Well a good dose of  denatonium benzoate should fix that!.  If you didn’t guess: I’m talking about biting nails. In this case for 30+ years and certainly not proud of it. But how to get rid of it?

Denatonium benzate

While sounding like a component of a weapon of mass destruction, it is used in medical placebo’s and discouragement of alcohols like methanol. I read that it’s the most bitter substance known to man. So the product with the highest concentration must be able to prevent me from putting my nails or fingers in my mouth, even when I’m acting on impulse, surely?  I tried out stuff like Byte-X in the past and I still continued biting anyways, so this time around, I tried Raylex. It’s some kind of marker pen, which you use to apply the stuff, full of denatonium benzate.

Marked for growth

It’s not that special, but you can actually get a companion app to remind you and coach you a bit and it does carry some ingredients to accelerate nail growth a bit. All said and done, being the ever skeptic, I started using it a couple of weeks before our holiday and followed the instructions through and through. I did found a small downside: it rubs off on your food as well, making everything very bitter. So I really had to think about the order of things to prevent a bitterness like no tomorrow. Not funny when eating a Wasa. Even avidly chewing gum doesn’t help for at least 10 minutes, meaning it really works well.

Onychophagia
Pen against onychophagia

So how did ye fare, biter?

Admittedly, I did bite 2 or 3 times over the course of more than a month, but it did make me feel sad since the rest was growing quite good. Bitten ones just fell out of tone and it shamed me to have a little relapse. “Surely I can keep  myself from this??” I thought by myself. Apply again. Ah. Forget to eat first. Dammit.

I had to clip my nails today for the first time since I can remember, because they were getting too long. And use a nail file, courtesy of girlfriend. Now that’s something new!
For most people a small feat, for me an honest personal victory. No more hiding fingers, folding hands on photo’s and the even bigger downfalls of biting nails. I do realize this probably reads like an advertorial, but this stuff actually worked for me.  I think that says a lot, coming from 30+ years of nail biting to this point.
I currently don’t bite my nails at all and I sincerely hope it stays out of my system for a long, long time. If you are having the same issue, be sure to try this out!

5 Stages of vacation grief

San Joan festivities
San Joan festivities

Ah… vacation. Waking up to the warm glow of the sun outside. Stumbling across the room, immediately changing sleep-attire for a swimming short. Sleepdrunk walking to the fridge, making a small breakfast and stepping out in the sun, walking past the swimmingpool and settling down beneath a hanook. Slowly eating breakfast consisting of the local prey from the Supermercado La Nucia. Spending the day warming up on loungebeds and dipping in the pool when it gets to much, only stopping the proces for primetime BBQ’ ing or visiting a restaurant. Or some funny festivity which involved putting up chopping a tree, carrying it to the village and setting it upright again with t-shirts in it.

The slower, but very good life. Vacation.

Aaaaand then you get back and must see through the 5 stages of vacation grief:

Denial – It’s not so bad!

Back at the office, still feeling the glow of sleeping late and forgetting this place actually existed.
Made some tea, thinking I actually have a job 🙂 Moreso, it is dry in the office, opposed to circumstances outside.

Anger – &(*()$&%!!!!

What the hell is all this mail?? Why the 180’s on stuff agreed prior to my leave? Why is a project timetable changed with deliverables due in 2 workdays?
Why does this place want my soul? Think happy thoughts. Vacation..

Bargaining – I can fix this

Well, I guess life is what you make it. If I can stay on top of the deadlines and this time NOT skip lunch as before the vacation, I’m going to be alright.
Maybe a refresher website or podcast on time management when I get home?

Depression – It’s all so meaningless!

Damn, woke up too late. Means getting the traffic penalty. Twice.
Oh hello desk, again. Was this place always so dim? And why is everyday becoming a repetition of the previous one?

Suddenly, it feels like I need a vacation but we only returned a week ago. Oh well..

Vacation
“Nuestra” casa en España

Acceptance

Let’s mark some dates for the next vacation, preferably with a lot of sun and fun. Rinse and repeat.
Maybe get a few days extra this year 🙂

Current stage: 5th! Let’s quickly organize something to look forward to 🙂

Windows 10, Hunting boxes and WTF is wrong with some people?

W10

I’ve been on the Windows Insider’s fast ring for Windows 10 (W10) and so far, so good. I’ve enjoyed the beta’s, both closed and open and I can honestly say I’ve never seen the like of a release like this before. W10 is know humming about quite content for some time now and what surprises me is that I actually do not have a lot to say about it, in a negative context. Well, maybe the Start menu at first but since it has just the customization options I need it was quickly setup to my liking. Well alright, two false notes: My antivirus program stopped working altogether, but it seemed more AV-vendors didn’t have their programs ready for W10 for a bit. Nothing ol’ MS can do about and it’s not like you’re completely vulnerable, MS Defender fills the gap against the worst crap around. The other thing was VMWare Workstation, which had to be repaired. Not a biggie though, after repair (5 mins) it worked fine again. I still think it’s the best free OS out here today for the average consumer (if you look hard enough, you can even upgrade unlicensed copies to fully activated ones ;)). But truth is, with the world shifting to different service models for the plain consumers, I wonder how long this will last.

Hunters be like..As I’m typing this though, I have an eye on my left portion of the screen where an iBood-hunt is taking place. Still want that damn box. Last one it was in my grasp but the payment went all haywire. No box. Meh.

For those unfamiliar: iBood is a site for daily offers below the normal going rates. Well, sometimes it’s worthwhile, sometimes it’s not. A couple of times a year, an iBood Hunt is organized, where a lot of previous offers pass on for even lower prices and the infamous iBood Box. It costs either ~ 50 or ~100 euro’s and contains at least that worth in several goods. Sometimes, the actual worth is 8-12 times what you pay for it, so it’s really nice if you can actually score one.

At least my girlfriend surprised me by buying new socks in one of the Hunt’s offerings today, so I do have that 🙂

And then for the last part of this blog’s title: I’m seriously out of ideas when it comes to what some people are thinking when I read news like a shooting where the perpetrator posts his attack on social media. What happened: a news crew was interviewing someone, when a guy opened fire on them from very close range. Well, nothing new for good ol’ Murica with all the gunslingers around ‘ cause it’s their constitutional right. But what’s really creepy? This (Warning: Shocking footage). He filmed it himself and uploaded it to his Facebook and Twitter where it got removed very quickly, but hey, when the Net has it.. It resurfaces easily enough. Time for another take on your constitutional rights?

But this is easily dwarfed by the ongoing crimes of war and spreading hatred by IS (but as much as the ones opposing ideology with violence). It’s kinda of-putting and sad to see that thousands of years of so called civilization still results in a reporter + cameraman getting killed on first person view and thousands of peoples fleeing their homelands because it’s teared up by wars. About what? Jealousy, money, oil, resources, self enrichment, not getting along or simply denying each other’s happiness. What are we teaching, what are we reaching? Or do people simply fail to see what is to be learned, even if it stares them in the face?

Makes me want to enjoy my freedom even more and keep on pursuing happiness.

Like getting iBood’ed socks when you’re hunting the box and be perfectly happy about it, because it’s a funny surprise little gift from the missus.. Even if I don’t get to order it again, I’ ll still have socks 😀 Small things, but steps in happiness.