The Times Between 64.

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My eye exam went well enough. My eyes seem to be in this limbo area of being good enough to not quite need bifocals, but also not being able to see detail well up close, or at a distance, anymore. So I’m getting glasses to see at a distance and maybe in a couple of years I’ll start getting bifocals. In the interim I’m going to have to just use magnification lenses if I’m working on something small. It’s annoying, but that’s just life, I guess. There were not any frames I particularly liked but I got a set that I think will not be too annoying. If they become a problem I have the skills to alter them to suit myself after the fact. Not ideal, but what in this world truly is?

In other news I applied for another credit card because so many retailers have dropped Discover recently. I’ve had a very good time using Discover for quite some time, and would just keep using them exclusively if I could, but my hand has been forced. I don’t particularly care for the business practices of Mastercard or Visa, but they functionally control commerce these days. Since I’m trapped at the house to some degree I need to be able to do business and buy things online. I think it’s fair to say that no company has clean hands anymore, so there is little choice but to give in unless you want to live off the grid like some kind of mountain man.

I’ve almost gone back to being able to sleep normally, so hopefully I can begin working on the actual story again before too much longer. Or at the very least do a better job with what I am doing while I try to put my life back in some kind of order. Things are such an absolute disaster, but if I was sleeping I could at least tackle more of it a day instead of shuffling around like a half awake corpse most of the time.

For now I’m tackling one disaster at a time and improving as much as I can when I can.

Anyway, if you feel like supporting my work please see the links above. Thanks for reading and I’ll see you… Monday, I guess. Unless I see you on social media.


Good luck with life and everything, thank goodness at least some things are going kinda well.

I’m enjoying the originally in this one. Never seen nothing but noses before….

This sequence is genuinely delivering a laugh a day. I fear disappointment when you get back on track.

I almost got bifocals.
But when they came in for me to try, no-one had explained beforehand that “Oh, the progressive shift between the two areas is in an hourglass shape, so the sides don’t really match up to either, and you won’t have decent peripheral vision.”
I tried them for a few days. After constant headaches, I flat refused to wear them anymore, took them back to the optometrist, and ordered two separate pairs of glasses. One for distance, the other for up-close.
Sure, it can be inconvenient to switch between them at times, but at least they each cover my entire field of vision.

Well, you could do lined bifocals too. There are also a wide range of progressive designs–they keep getting better, with wider viewing areas and less distortion. Admittedly, they are also expensive, so if you’re happy with what works, don’t mess with it. I just say this as someone who works in the field.

Don’t be too afraid of bifocals. They’re a huge improvement in vision. I’ve had them since my first pair of glasses, and that was in the 8th grade, over 60 years ago. I “graduated” to trifocals a couple decades ago. They have old-fashioned distinct lines between each lens section, so it’s very obvious which correction I’m using. My brain seems to like that. My only attempt at progressive lenses (which have the abovementioned ambiguous area) also left me seriously dizzy and dissatisfied: there was only one spot where vision was in focus for any given distance. This meant that instead of moving my eyeballs to look at something, I had to move my whole head. With the three distinct sections I have decent vision over 3 overlapping ranges of distance. Much more satisfactory.

I’ve had progressive lenses for a long time now, and never have been sure how much good they do for me.

Distance glasses for the world and reading glasses for work are a good choice for as long as you can get away with it. Hope it makes things easier for you.

Chase controls both Mastercard and Visa transactions. I worked for First Data/Fiserv for over 20 years, and they were pushing hard to remove the Diner card section (which is essentially Discover and American Express) because they didn’t want to use chips in their cards or evolve beyond mainframe 24 hour charge processing. Everything is same-time payments now (which is why I work at ACI Worldwide now), so any cards or processors not keeping up will eventually go away or not be accepted anywhere.

It’s an upside to merchants. Merchants want to know almost immediately if they are going to have a problem with a charge bouncing (not enough funds available) instead of waiting 24 hours like they did 10 years ago. Unfortunately, Discover and American Express did not want to keep up, so they are the smaller, less accepted cards now.

It’s been a whirlwind of change in the fin tech world since I started. I used to load data on to mainframes with punch cards and magnetic reel to reel tape, and then large tape cassettes and now it’s all DASD.

I am happy to hear you are getting back to (what passes for) normal, Jackie.

You have been entertaining throughout your drought. Suggest you go through your Times Between strips looking for plot hooks. Right here is a possible one to my mind.

“-shuffling around like a half awake corpse-” Now th├ít could would be a funny zombie movie; …Brains!! …Brains! …Brainz …Brainzz zzz zzz zzz zzz

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