Q is for…

Quirks:

1) My eyes don’t work together in the same way that most people’s eyes do. I am generally using my left eye, which focuses better, and my right eye just contributes peripherally, even though its vision is actually clearer. 3-D movies, puzzle pictures, stereo-microscopes, and binoculars don’t work for me. Well, I can use a microscope or binoculars, but I generally just use my left eye on the left eyepiece.

Also, driving at night in the rain, and playing ball games, can be challenging for me because my depth perception relies largely on angles, lines, lights, shadows, and perspective. All this is the result of surgery to correct crossed eyes when I was two.

Apparently, now crossed eyes can be corrected with glasses.

2) I’ve got a touch of hypermobility — my joints move more than they should. I started noticing it I think in my teens, when sometimes when walking it felt like one hip or the other would pop a bit out of joint.

It became a real problem several years ago — not sure how much was knitting and the computer and not having good hammer technique with my dulcimer, and how much was the heavy skillet full off fried rice one night, but I got bad pains in my left hand all around the base of the thumb — took a few months to resolve.

I now have neoprene braces that I wear on both hands when I knit, sew by hand, or do other focused fine motor hand stuff. I also have special dulcimer hammers with an ergonomic finger grip that doesn’t even involve my thumbs. And, when exercising, I am getting better at taking care of form and finding modifications to avoid bending my knees, hands, or other joints in the wrong direction or just too far.

3) I hate strong smells. Well, certain ones. Good food cooking almost always smells good to me, and many real flowers smell good to me, too. Likewise freshly cut lawns.

But most candles bother me. And people’s perfumes, powders, fragrant soaps, shampoos, and lotions.

And the cleaning chemicals used in rest stop bathrooms.

Hand sanitizer, and the same stuff in those “moist towelettes” when you get ribs or lobster.

And anywhere where you can smell the dishwashing station AND the kitchen in a restaurant. Good food smells plus bad food smells plus chemical smells equals yuck. (Another reason to dislike those towelettes — I don’t want to smell lemon and chemical along with the smell of ribs or lobster.)

Smoke is almost always bad. I don’t mind a wood fire at some distance, but no tobacco, and no burning trash.

And then there’s the smell of the compost container (the small one used to hold scraps in the kitchen) when its contents have just been dumped (in the composter in the yard) after sitting in the kitchen a loooooong time.

This issue of smells, along with sensitive skin and being somewhat crunchy, is part of why I mostly clean with plain water (often adding vinegar or baking soda), recently started making my own laundry detergent, and somewhat dread having to wash my hands anywhere but at home.

4) Those are just physical quirks. Listing my personality quirks would require many more hours and words.

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