Marc’s Micro Blog


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Medical Updates

Since my original post about my weird medical issue, I have some updates to share.

Medical Updates

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Medical Updates

Since my original post about my weird medical issue, I have some updates to share.

I want to thank my amazing wife, my incredible family, and my awesome friends for being so supportive of me during this period. Your check-ins and kind words have meant the world to me. I’m lucky to have you all.

I will share more updates here as I have them. It will likely be at least Wednesday before I have more news.

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I have been a vegetarian for two years as of today!

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Love the album Panamá 77 by Daniel Villarreal. Different from anything else in wonderful ways.

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The leap second is being scrapped and Meta has a new open-source timing protocol in its data centers.

Kinda fascinating to see so much time-related news in one day.

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My Incredibly Weird Medical Issue

It’s been a strange couple of weeks.

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My Incredibly Weird Medical Issue

I’m 48 and have generally been a healthy person. I don’t deal well with discomfort or medical issues. So, apologies that I’m being indulgent with this blog post. I’m grappling with a new, weird medical situation, and writing about it is therapeutic for me.

My Incredibly Weird Medical Issue

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My Incredibly Weird Medical Issue

I’m 48 and have generally been a healthy person. I don’t deal well with discomfort or medical issues. So, apologies that I’m being indulgent with this blog post. I’m grappling with a new, weird medical situation, and writing about it is therapeutic for me. If this isn’t your type of topic, you won’t offend me at all by moving on.

About two weeks ago, on a Saturday morning, I was getting ready to head to lunch with my wife and mother-in-law here in Jakarta. I had just brushed my teeth and went to gargle with some citrus-flavored Listerine. When I brought the open Listerine bottle close to my mouth and the scent hit my nose, it triggered what I’m now calling an “episode."

I smelled an incredibly intense rotten odor that wasn’t real. That odor was then coupled with a wave of dizziness and breaking into a full-body sweat. I had to lay down. After a few minutes, I felt better. Then, sniffing the Listerine didn’t provoke any response at all. It smelled perfectly normal.

Long story short, episodes like that one have continued over the past two weeks. They are no longer triggered purely by smell. They can come at any time of day. They can come when I’m physically active or when I’m sedentary. Sometimes, they are intense with rotten odor, dizziness, and sweating. Sometimes, I just suddenly feel like my whole body is tingly and that I’m a bit winded. My energy level drops significantly after each episode. It’s lovely.

I’ve met with a doctor and gone in for an MRI scan. The MRI has found two issues.

First, the mucosal linings of my sinuses have become abnormally thickened. This is generally caused by high blood sugar or a sinus infection. But, I don’t have either of those conditions. The cause of the thickening is currently unknown.

Second, I have localized swelling in my brain. There is a lesion affecting my left hippocampus and my inferior temporal lobe. In the vast majority of cases, this is caused by high blood pressure. But, I don’t have high blood pressure. The cause of the lesion is also currently unknown.

On Wednesday, I will be getting a Transcranial Doppler ultrasound scan. I will then be meeting with a neurologist to review the results and consider any possible next steps. I’m also starting to research medical options outside of Indonesia should I need them.

If you’ve read this far, thanks. It feels good to get all of this out.

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The Surprisingly Sophisticated Mind Of An Insect

Amazing piece that explores whether insects (and many life forms) have their version of consciousness.

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A rainy afternoon in Bogor, Indonesia.

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Trying to decide if my complete lack of interest in Mastodon is healthy or a sign of age.

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I was just thinking I’d like to hear some new Jazz and Apple Music immediately offered up a whole “Jazz Around the World” section. The day is going well!

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Learning a lot about hip abduction and how very bad my hips are at doing it.

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What Humans Can Learn From The Language Of Honeybees

This was an utterly fascinating article. I’m also intrigued by many of the articles from Noema Magazine, which I somehow managed to not know about until this week.

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Just went through a day where any strong smell (mouthwash, coconut water, nachos) was suddenly making me feel incredibly dizzy and weak for several minutes. My sense is that I may have been hyperventilating a bit during those minutes. It was very strange. I think/hope I am better this morning. Tested with some strong odors and am normal so far. Wish I knew what this was and what caused it!

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iOS Privacy: Instagram and Facebook can track anything you do on any website in their in-app browser · Felix Krause

This is really disturbing.

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Apple has decided to move the Featured section above the Up Next section in the TV app on Apple TV.

Coming on top of the recent App Store ads debacle, this really bothers me.

The need for “growth” is leading a formerly customer-centric company in a horrible direction.

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Learning about Sortition and the Sortition Foundation as a potential democracy reform. Fascinating, impactful stuff.

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Just discovered the Control D DNS service. Wow. Highly customizable blocking options for ads, trackers, malware, adult content, gambling, drugs, etc. Custom geolocation anywhere in the world per service. Unique profiles per device. This thing is impressive!

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For anyone looking to replace Twitter with another service, pause and ask yourself if you really need a replacement. Do you really need to join a new rat race for followers, likes, shares, etc.? Is that really going to bring you greater happiness or peace?

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Finally finished the first season of House of the Dragon. Too many characters. Too many time jumps with different actors playing characters. Too many deaths of characters I barely got a chance to know. Not feeling it.

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Just learned that Mavis Beacon of “Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing” is a character and not a real person. My mind is blown and I’m a little sad.

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Currently reading: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts 📚

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Finished reading: What We Owe the Future by William MacAskill 📚

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Hungry koi at Spirited Gardens on Jeju Island in South Korea.