Fox's Journal


I’m Fox, and welcome to the journal (of doom? possibly). I joined up in September of 2019, and pretty quickly after that, my life started changing rapidly. I haven’t been nearly as active as I’d like and spend most of my time getting confused by the puzzles. Research? I can handle that! Visual puzzles and ciphers and things? I’m rubbish.

My pronouns are she/her.

I’m a Verdurant-bearing Balimora. I tend to run around exclaiming at things and how they’re pretty or awesome, so this feels right to me.

I live in Central Texas fairly close to where I grew up. I’ve spent quite a bit of time in the Midwest (Nebraska and Wisconsin), but I moved back to Texas to help take care of my mom who is getting older.

I work in the emergency management field. I help train first responders how to prepare for and respond to large-scale disasters. I also work with different departments at my workplace (a university) to develop their continuity plans. It’s incredibly fun and rewarding - except when I have to deal with all the horrible stuff like mass fatality planning which is extremely interesting but also very sad. :sob: My current focus at work is helping to run our mass vaccination hub for covid.

I’ve been very focused on my writing this year, and I’m submitting stories almost once a week through Reedsy under a pseudonym. (There’s a published author who shares my actual name.) I’ve been shortlisted three times but I’m yet to win a contest. I also got an honorable mention for a 100 word horror story I submitted through Scribophile earlier this year. So that’s really exciting!

When I’m not at work or playing with my mostly-dachshund Scoops or writing, I can be found reading, knitting, or playing Animal Crossing. I’m also in the planning stages to create another computer game - this one will be about a witch’s familiar on a quest to find ingredients.


What’s it been like behind the scenes of a very different front line (in comparision to clinical)? Has the vaccination programme mainy been managed by volunteers like in the UK? How has this compared to other emergencies you’ve had to manage in your career?
Whats your favourite stitch in knitting? I’m learning to brioche (finding it super difficult).
Whats your favourite theme in writing?
Have a good day!
:two_hearts: :revolving_hearts: :two_hearts:


I’m extremely lucky to not be on the clinical side of things! My job is to make sure our first responders have PPE - and for the first few months, I was also working with the nursing homes and other assisted living facilities in the area to make sure they had all their supplies, too. Now, I’m helping run the mass vaccination clinic and manage all the public information aspects of that. The clinic was largely run by volunteers for the first month, then the state told us that we had to let the National Guard take over and basically threatened to withhold vaccine doses unless we agreed, so now a lot is run by the NG. Other emergencies I’ve handled have been significantly smaller potatoes - lots of manure spills (I worked in rural Wisconsin for a long time, and we had tons of cows) and flooding. I would say handling covid has been very similar to wedding planning only with more casualties.

I’m terrible at knitting and haven’t graduated from making rectangles yet, so I mostly stick to stockingette. I recently did a hat in long raindrop, though, and I was so happy (I knit flat then seam for hats). I’d love to learn to cable someday. What are your favorites? Brioche looks lovely - good luck!

I don’t think I have a favorite writing theme - my stories tend to end horribly for the characters, so when I wrote my last story, my beta readers were surprised it had a happy ending. That’s not intentional - I just go off down that path cackling wildly. Genre-wise, I’m all over the board. I’m working on a detective noir-style novel, and the short stories I write could be anything.


I have a confession to make: I hate April Fool’s Day. Hate it. I find most pranks to be mean-spirited and hurtful, so I don’t approach April 1 with anything short of dread.

My dad’s favorite “prank” when I was growing up was to tell me to pack a suitcase and wait by the door because he had found a better behaved orphan and was going to trade me for them. There would, of course, be a last minute change to plans, so I’d get to stay - but I still had to sit by the door with my suitcase for hours.

In school, pranks were things like hiding school supplies or changing someone’s answers on homework or asking out someone you really didn’t like and then laughing at them. I think pranks were played on people the pranker didn’t like anyway.

As an adult, there’s the slew of things like “I’m pregnant” or “I’m getting married” or “I’m moving across the country” or whatever. And yeah, I can see how those are mostly harmless, but I still really dislike them. Inevitably, someone will fall for them (and sometimes, that someone is me) - and the reaction from the poster is like, “Haha sucker, you said nice things about my announcement but you’re really dumb because it’s not true at all!”

How is this fun? :unamused:


I agree with you. I don’t think it’s any fun to have a day of not trusting anything anyone says. I’ve never liked pranks in general either because more often than not they’re only fun for one side of the exchange.


I’m don’t really do April fools and the pranks I play are an all year round, management sanctioned prank/security policy.

If you leave your computer unlocked while you step away from the desk you’re fair game for having your background changed to an image of desktop and all items hidden or adding an autocorrect eg swap Mark for Superman.

These are fairly innocent and can be easily rectified.
I used to work helldesk so I’d end up fixing and issuing the security lecture ’ lock your pc and it won’t happen again!’ Now my colleagues have that pleasure.

Yes it’s slightly mean, yes it has the potential to be embarrassing if they don’t notice the autocorrect. But it’s a lot better than potential data loss or hack.

Pranks that actively hurt or mock someone suck!


I am in full support of harmless and silly ways to promote cybersecurity!


Yesterday… was a DAY. You might have seen news about the mass shooting in Bryan, TX yesterday - that’s my city. My job is supporting first responders, so I was helping out behind the scenes and listening to the radio traffic as the manhunt dragged on for a couple hours. It was amazing to hear when the guy was finally caught - but the success was at a cost, unfortunately.

Then a couple hours later, we had a massive hail storm that tromped cars and houses and businesses.

AND there’s a new natural AND vaccine immunity resistant strain of covid that we’re in the process of reporting to the CDC.

On the bright side, a story I submitted to a contest was named a runner up! tiny flag waving hands