barely breathimg

October 5, 2019

i’m currently taking natural supplements daily to help combat my hay-fever (rhinitis to be technical),  It helps a little but I can feel when the pollen count is high (even when the entire house is closed) or even when it’s only moderate if a window’s left open.  It can manifest itself through itchy eyes, constant sneezing, blocked nostrils, or in really sever cases, an inability to breathe.

i noticed today that i exhibited the first two symptoms – which i noticeably have less of.  However, my wife propped a window open as she was cooking – even once i closed it i knew i was too late and the pollen had already gotten in the house because i couldn’t stop rubbing my eyes.  Later, i had a string of sneezes – which i now rarely do.

it was only once we lived in Adelaide that it became obvious – i lived in Melbourne for a year and was unaware of it then – some say it’s because the wind here blows through deserts.  even when i was in the Philippines and Victoria i sneezed consecutively ( my record is 27. if i recall correctly) so i must have had some form of allergy.

you need to understand that for someone with claustrophobia the prospect of not being able to breathe is a really terrifying proposition.  Moreover, sneezing “wildly” for anyone using a rollator, forget steering but trying to maintain upright balance.

it’s  more prominent now since it’s Spring.  It’s “harder” to do my daily speech exercises now as my nose is blocked. it can be quite challenging to produce the correct sounds while also multiplexing breathing with the mouth – co-ordination is not a strength these days!

learning to un-learn

September 30, 2019

my accent (along with my disability) makes it difficult for me to be understood.  My English was influenced by American (as they “imposed” their educational system on us, unlike the Spanish who “chose” us to be “ignorant”) but someone born Sate-side could easily tell i didn’t grow up in America.

we spoke English at home as my parents spoke different dialects – sadly it was their only common language.  i learned Tagolog (comprising most of Filipino) from the “streets” (as this was only a subject in school during my time – the medium of instruction is in English).  Suffice it to say, my vocabulary in Filipino isn’t “great” or “refined”.

Although i was taught the letter “j” in our alphabet, it is pronounced as “h” in our native tongue – so producing a “hard j” is more difficult for me (and is further compounded by my current speech quality).  During my education, “z’ was not part of our alphabet (i think it’s now included) so this is also not an “easy”  sound for me.  Essentially, my condition impairs my ability to produce “active” (that is, with the voice turned on) sounds.  While previously i made “fast progress” through daily practice and sheer will, i need to be more conscious now as i have a tendency to revert to old habits as my speech patterns are already well established {this is not helped by my age).  Case in point, (unlike consonants) there’s an “acceptable” range for vowels which children “easily” mimic and older people struggle with (that’s why it’s easier for you to learn another language ehen your “younger”).

i’ve got such a “bastardised” accent (as my pronunciation of syllables doesn’t “neatly” fall under one language) that i can pose a challenge to my speech pathologist.  =)

“walang masamang tinapay”

September 21, 2019

this is a Filipino expression that roughly translates to:  “no such thing as bad bread”.  It is used to describe individuals that always sees the good in others.  Being pedantic, it applies more towards their attitude.  For me at least, that is an important distinction.  They are not ignoring other’s faults but choose instead to focus on the “good” qualities of the individual.

in my experience, these people are also “nice”.  i’m generally mistrustful but there are just a handful of people you just instantly like (in the absence of rationale or actual dealings with them).  there are just a few “good eggs”. you just automatically know whom (did i use it correctly?) these people are.

while i dislike a few, they are at least true to themselves and are honest.  what i abhor are those that project a “nice” image but when you get to know them more that their motivation(s) for doing “good” deeds are rooted on what others might say, social expectation, or self interest.  they assume, quite wrongly IMHO, that the world revolves around their wants and needs.

git smart

September 15, 2019

i don’t remember if you first have to “authorise” a device to work with GitHub – i did it a long time ago for an online course so i’m not sure whether i need it in order to perform the following actions.  Sorry, i know this can be frustrating for a beginner as i’ve experienced the following:  1.) i’ve tried Googling it but sometimes the results are nil if you enter an “improper” search term, 2.)  Sometimes it isn’t in the returned link at all or you need to read a lot to eventually get to what you were after or 3.) Sometimes it leads you to a “forum” where in order to feel “superior” they make those asking questions feel dumb and sometimes their solutions are “overlycomplicated” (sans explanation because they are either too impatient or incapable of offering a “simpler” answer), don’t even work (as they are careless or don’t even bother to test it first, or are “emotionally unintelligent” enough to NOT give a possible solution and just a “snide” comment (and i’m not really sensitive).That said, i’m open to revising this information if anybody knows or my answers are wanting. =)

 

Communal input, IMHO, is a good thing because:  1.)  Nobody knows everything (as much as some people assume they do), or 2.) There are times when someone else knows a “better” way (e.g, easier, more intuitive, faster, less resource intensive, etc.) to do something.

 

Follow the steps to clone a GitHub repository to a Mac folder: https://help.github.com/en/articles/cloning-a-repository

It uses the git clone command.

I then used git add <filename> to reflect the modified or added file.

I then used git status to check if my last command was successful – the font colour of the filename should appear in green.

I then used git commit -m <comment> to accept the change(s).

And, finally, I used git push to save this.

Here’s my updated GitHub repository:  https://github.com/LinsAbadia/python

While these are the steps i used,  i don’t pretend to be a “power user”.  Kindly let me know if there’s an “easier” way to do this so we can share it.

 

as an educator i’ve always kept that saying in mind.  However, it’s not until i became an online student that i fully appreciated it. Having been a Subject Matter “Expert” (SME) on most of the courses i taught, there was a “barrier” of sorts in trying to design it to maximise student learning.  In learning Python i’ve encountered difficulties despite my experience, academic qualifications, and, most recently, having completed a professional certification. There is still much I have to learn in the field of Data Science.  With this in mind i’ve recently made a new Github Repository with a MIT license that’s publicly accessible (https://github.com/LinsAbadia/Python) that i hope to gradually populate – properly structuring it will involve trial and error.  This is to 1.) Develop my “Code Portfolio” and show i can still be productive in spite of my “disability”, 2.)  Help document and assess my progress, and 3.) Helping me understand concepts fully by seeing if i can explain it “simply” to others (e.g. pointing out “gotchas” in learning and the language).

 

 

 

left behind

September 11, 2019

since i’m right-handed, i always knew my left side was weaker.  But yesterday at my neurophysio it became obviously apparent.  They say disability is often more pronounced in the non-dominant side.  My therapists have long known this and tried to design activities to strengthen it but since i’m more aware of it now and seem not to exhibit “cognitive deficits”, I should consciously lead with my left in performing routine activities and my daily home programme.

system of a down

February 7, 2019

they showed The Godfather series on free-to-air TV (i rewatched the first two instalments but not the third which i don’t really like.  IMHO, the second film is one of those rare gems when the sequel is as good or better than the original).  I felt bad for the character Michael.  Like Abigail in the film The Favourite (side note: the Academy recognised the Aussie screenwriter), (in my experience) it usually doesn’t really matter if you start out as well-meaning but being part of a “corrupt” system changes you accordingly.

As Trevor Noah talks about apartheid, Hannah Gadsby about marginalisation, and Dave Chappelle about #MeToo, they all point out that these issues are systemic and deeply-ingrained.  Good individuals acting independently are insufficient to effect cultural change – it takes targeted actions (sometimes done in concert) for meaningful results.

i know New Amsterdam is just a tv show (mostly involving trite Hollywood pablum) but occasionally Dr. Goodwin showcases important lessons for us all: he may be over-idealistic at times but, essentially, the key is to understand the underlying structure that causes systemic issues.  It is difficult to improve systems but a good understanding is a vital start.