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Monday, March 26, 2018

Tacoma Outdoor Singles

So, my co-worker Dora told me about meetup.com and specifically a group called "Tacoma Outdoor Singles" who organize hikes. There are over 1,000 members, but obviously only a few sign up for each hike. On Saturday, I went on my first hike with the group.

Although I want to gush about the location (Deception Pass State Park), this is more about my personal experience and something that I didn't even realize had happened until after the fact.

I wasn't scared. Like, at all. Re: very little to no anxiety. I mean, if you know me, you know that I freak out and overthink about everything. This is a prime example of my thought process. I mean sure, I had a moment the night before thinking I might end up miserable because chances were good it was going to be cloudy and cold and possibly rainy, and I was hiking with a bunch of people I'd never met etc. But it didn't last long.

I ended up carpooling with a couple of nice ladies named Lisa and Tracy. I had no trouble talking with Lisa about a variety of topics. In fact, Tracy was decidedly more introverted (re: silent) than I was. And oddly, Lisa is very introverted as well. It was a two hour drive there and back, and even though there was a rain/snow mix up in Marysville, by the time we reached Deception Pass, the clouds had parted and it was completely gorgeous. I met a lot of nice people. Some were faster hikers, and some were slower. The group leader had no trouble waiting for the stragglers. He was very nice. 

I even had no trouble agreeing to dinner afterwards with the group. Can you believe it? Not 5 hours ago I had met these people for the first time and just did a 7 mile hike, and now we're all going to a sit down restaurant to eat! Not a lick of anxiety!

...Where the hell did it go? lol Did I just randomly change a huge part of myself? You know, I didn't feel hardly any nervousness in meeting the Trailsiders group either. Although we haven't gone on any hikes yet, I've been doing weekly conditioning walks with them and there's people dropping off and joining every week. 

It's just... so unlike me to not feel any apprehension when meeting new people or doing new things. My brain was blessedly silent. I wonder what this means.

Anyway, I'll leave you with a couple of pictures of Deception Pass. If you live local, I highly highly recommend a visit. If I lived closer I would go all the time. It's one of the most beautiful, mind-blowing parks I have ever seen.

One of the ladies in our hiking group


Yes, that's a rope



 tilt shift

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Photography

I've had a lot of bloggable ideas in my mind rattling around for a while, but I just never had the gumption to write anything down. And then, if I forgot about them within a few hours then they probably weren't worth writing about anyway.

But today, I feel like writing about one of my hobbies. My friend Dave and I both got into photography at roughly the same time, although he probably started a few months before me. Oddly enough, the fact that my father is a professional photographer did not lead me to be interested in the slightest. What got me there was working at a hospital and seeing professional photos of what I like to call "blurry water" - long exposures that blur the movement of the water.

 My first attempt at blurry water. Editing is not my strong suit

I told myself that I wanted to learn how to do that. And I slowly began to research because that is what I do best. I learned that point and shoot cameras will never allow you to get that kind of effect, so I would have to upgrade. I began to read about lenses, and I remember getting annoyed at the fact that I would essentially have to give up digital zoom - a favorite feature of mine. I still get frustrated sometimes, that I have to switch lenses if I want to do certain things, but it's par for the course.
Since Dave is an electrician and much more technical-minded than I am, he was easily able to grasp the mechanics of photography, while I still struggle to this day with some more advanced concepts. He also went backwards - rebuilding super old cameras as a hobby because they allow him to take photos in medium and large format. Digital cameras today can barely do this, and the ones that do cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.


I still struggle with concepts like depth of field (dof) when it comes to aperture settings. I get confused when Dave tells me that any photos that I take with my 1.8 aperture on my lens will not be sharp regardless of whether the shot is in focus. 

Who knew that "in focus" and "sharp" were not the same?! Mind blown.

There are still a lot of things I don't understand about photography. It's not nearly as easy as snapping photos with a point and shoot (P&S). I mean, my first real camera was a Sony NEX-5N. I bought it because it was small like a P&S, and had a lot of good software so that you could treat it like a P&S, but also allowed you to switch out lenses and set the camera with manual settings. It was a perfect learning camera. When I finally felt like I had grasped the basic concepts of most of the manual camera settings, I wanted to move up to something more advanced. 

I had decided that I wanted to get into Milky Way photography. I began to do more research on different lenses and cropped sensors (APS-C) vs full frame sensors (see picture above), and decided to stick with Sony because I like the electronics they make, and I like the idea of a mirrorless camera. I'm a lady with small hands - having a camera that isn't the size of your head can be helpful. And less moving parts means less can break or get dirty. Plus, I could use the lenses I'd already bought for my NEX until I could afford to switch them out, even though they were cropped lenses made for a cropped camera. Win win. 

The picture above is of a Sony A7II. Mine is similar - I decided on an A7R. There are downsides to having a Sony camera. Unlike Canon and Nikon, Sony is fairly new to the camera market and not a lot of lenses from outside companies (like Rokinon or Sigma) are making lenses for Sony. They are also playing catch up themselves trying to pump out their own lenses. And Sony's lenses are a bit bigger than their Nikon or Canon equivalents, which is the downside to having a camera with no mirror. But, I still think it's worth it. Sony is a software company first and foremost. Even though my A7R has a lot more knobs and buttons on the outside body than my NEX did, a lot of settings are still in the software, so there's a learning curve for anybody that is used to a Nikon or Canon body. But that also means that the software can do a lot of work for you to help you take better photographs.


 Hurricane Ridge

I'm still learning. This is me not knowing how to set a bulb exposure for 2-3 minutes in order to grab the foreground and blend it with the background. It's still one of my favorite shots, but I'm very much still an amateur. I'm 100% self taught. Even though I have taken a beginning photography class and a milky way shooting class (this picture was taken before that) I hadn't learned a whole lot that I didn't already know.

My goal is not to become a professional photographer. My only goal is to take a photo worthy enough to be printed large on a sheet of metal to hang in my apartment. Being an artist (especially a novice) I have a critical eye of my work, and my criteria is basically "am I willing to spend $120 to print that out on a large sheet of metal?" 

I think I'm pretty close with one of my latest pieces: 

Kubota Gardens in Seattle

 I'll get there one of these days.


 

Monday, January 1, 2018

It was a Dark and Stormy Night

It was roughly 2am and I couldn't sleep. The year was 2009, and I had been on unemployment since March. A lot had happened that year, some bad, but mostly good. As I look back on it, I lost my job at IBS due to the recession that kicked up around October of the previous year, and sales were slumping for everyone. I was slated to get married to my now ex-husband on May 23rd, and had already invited almost all of my co-workers to that wedding (how awkward).

It was also the year that I finally started to work on my weight - as not even the anticipation of a wedding was motivating me, but a co-worker of Justin's told him about a product she was using called hCG and it was helping her lose weight. After a ton of research I finally decided to try it myself. 2009 was the year that I finally took control of my weight and my health in general. It was also the year that I got hired on to work at Franciscan Medical Group with Dr. Saffari - a job I still have to this day and am always grateful for. 

But that was all in October and December of 2009. Before that, around the same time as my honeymoon, I discovered a show that would also change my life for the better.



I had been out of work for around 3-4 months and was getting discouraged. I had no official college education (only technical college) so it was difficult to find work. Not working had my circadian rhythm all out of wack, so flipping through TV channels at 2am was not unheard of for me. I had probably scrolled through the list at least twice, seeing Good Eats pass by, when I finally decided that whatever this show was, it was better than the other random stuff on so early in the morning.

I hated cooking shows with a passion. They were so boring. The hosts were always so perfect, so calm and cool and collected; making everything look so easy. Nothing ever happened in these lame, 30 minute spots. Chop the ingredients, listen to a stupid story about how their mother used to cut onions, throw them in a pan with other stuff, talk about their first thanksgiving, cook the stuff. Take a bite. Say yummy things. The end. I wanted to stab my eyes out. (Martha Stewart and Barefoot Contessa come to mind). It probably also didn't help that I hated to cook in general.

Some shows didn't need to have celebrity guests
in order to make them watchable

My parents had tried to teach me some basic things when I was younger but I just wasn't interested. Cooking seemed like way too much work and gave such meager, useless results. To be bluntly honest (sorry mom) the food I grew up with was not "blow my mind" delicious, so what I had was all I knew, and I didn't know it could be better. Oh so much better.

Poison, poison, happiness. This is how
some oils are made :D

I wish I could remember the first episode I ever saw. I'll say it
might have been Tender is the Pork, because that episode first aired May 26th, 2009, while I was on my honeymoon and the 2am showing might have been a recent repeat. All I remember thinking was that it was entertaining. The guy hosting the show was a geek. He wore glasses, he was smart, he was quirky, and he was funny. And I was learning. I had forgotten how great it felt to learn.

I told the DVR to start recording his show, and I began to watch them almost religiously. It took me a long time before I ever made my first recipe of his, though. But, Alton Brown of Good Eats was the first person to ever convince me that cooking wasn't nearly as hard as it seemed. But how did he do it, you ask? Well, Alton and I are like of mind in the fact that we must know why. 

Why do I need to add cream of tartar to my egg whites? (If I have to run to the store for this vital ingredient, at least tell me why it's important!)
Why do I need to add acid to my brine? (fun fact, when you add an acid it becomes a marinade)
Why did John Montagu, Earl of Sandwich, invent the sandwich? (Okay, that one wasn't something I had to know, but it was an entertaining answer)

I think the first recipe I ever attempted of his was guacamole. It seemed easy enough, and turns out - it was! And definitely cheaper than buying it premade in the store. After that, the flood gates had opened. Good Eats was not only entertaining me, but I was learning and actually wanting to cook the things he was making. All because he explained how things worked. Gave me the science. Told me why. Turns out that's all I really needed.

[This is an old list where I was keeping tabs of all the Good Eats applications that I was making. I'm sure it has expanded by now!]

Good Eats ran alongside my new, thinner me (which would take years to accomplish, and I'm still working on it), and gave me the confidence I needed to try my hand at other people's recipes - healthy versions of food I already knew. And in some cases, feel bold enough to change them up how I knew science would allow, and make my own recipes

Crazy, right?

It all led down this path to self-reliance. To not have to buy pre-packaged, processed foods. To know how to eat healthier and to save money. And that's all Alton Brown's goal ever was: he wanted people to learn how to cook for themselves. And he definitely accomplished that with me. Sometimes I wonder what my life would have been like if I'd discovered his show when it first aired - in 1999, I would have been in 9th grade; a prime time to begin learning how to cook for myself. And then sometimes I wonder where I would be today if I hadn't been up at 2am that fateful night, bored and tired and begging to be entertained.

It's interesting to wonder about, but I'm glad I'll never know.



Sunday, August 27, 2017

Donating Plasma

This is one of those situations where Biomat ended up on my spite list. I'd heard about donating

plasma for money from a facebook group, and they listed Gilfols as a place that you could donate plasma for cash.
Now, I don't give much in society, but what I can do is give blood. I have O-; the universal donor. And I will gladly take time out of my day to donate as much as I can. The process of giving blood is pretty quick - usually takes about an hour (including the prescreen, the blood draw itself takes about 17 minutes) unless they are slammed. But plasma is a bit different. With plasma, you are hooked up to an aphresis machine and it separates your plasma and returns the red blood cells back to you along with saline. Due to this, the process takes roughly one to two hours. Plus, plasma regenerates in the body very quickly. While whole blood takes 56 days, plasma takes about 48 hours. Another downside to plasma is that it takes 6-10 donations from the same person to make just 1 dose of medicine for someone, where as whole blood can save up to 3 lives for one donation. So, because of these caveats, it makes sense that companies have to entice people with monetary gain in order to keep coming back to donate. A sad but realistic truth.

Anyway, I'm here to tell you about the process of donating plasma in case you were interested. Gilfols is only one company out of dozens that do this and each place is a bit different, but this was my experience. And I can tell you straight up that they really really need to streamline their process. Although returns visits will take under 2 hours, first timers (me) took 5. Yes, FIVE HOURS.

So the reason that Biomat [Gilfols] was on my spite list was because on my first trip out there they ask you to fill out as basic form that lists your medications. Well, being a good citizen, I noted that I take Phentermine but only once a week. However, they didn't like that and wanted a note from my doctor saying it was okay to take it and donate plasma. Fine. Sent my doctor an email and she said no, she will go by whatever they recommend. FINE. So, I stop taking the phentermine. I go back. I fill out the form again. Then they say I need a note from my doctor that I had stopped taking the phentermine. Sigh. So, turned away again! Finally get the note that I stopped and now we can proceed from stage 1, which was a quick nurse assessment of the form/medications.

Stage 2 was a quick vein check and was told to read a binder about plasma donations and medications I can't take etc. If you give blood, this is similar to that. Then back out into the waiting room.

Stage 3 is watch a short video on an ipad about how donating plasma saves lives etc out in the waiting area.

Stage 4 is getting called back into the prescreen area where they ask you to answer 65 questions about sexual history, tattoos, needles, diseases, travel etc. Again, similar to the whole blood questionnaire. And then they take your vitals. Anything here can disqualify you. Hematocrit, temp, blood pressure, protein levels. My temp was too low and had to wait 15 minutes for another retake.

Stage 5 Getting called back to do the physical. He/she will make you do a urine test and has you rewatch the short video while that's processing (really?) They then read from a booklet that basically restates what you just watched (really?).  Then they will check your reflexes, eyes, nose, ears, ankles, abdomen, basically checking for any sign of infection or needle injection sites.
[By the way, the guy whom checked me and who was the same paramedic who stroke me off the list for the phentermine (which only has a 28 hour half life ffs!) is such a cocky bastard. I can imagine how much of a joy he must be to work with.]


Stage 6 Eat, and wait. Because you've been here for almost 4 hours at this point and you're damn hungry and need to eat before you donate plasma, and they have cup noodles and Gatorade. Yay.

Stage 7 DONATE. This is a bit different than whole blood. They want you to pump your fist the entire time that it's drawing from you. I'm not sure what the cycle timer is but it feels like a while, maybe 10 minutes, and your hand gets tired. Then, the pressure on the cuff will release and you stop pumping your fist as your red cells get returned back to you. You can watch as each cycle drops more plasma into the container and you can see how much longer you've got. I watched an episode of The Flash on Netflix while I did it. You just have to be cognizant of when you pump your fist and when not to.


Stage 8 Wait to get paid. For the donation center up here, the pay scale goes like this:
$75 for the first and $75 second donation (they teach you that you must donate at least twice or the first batch gets tossed. That makes me sad)

$50 for the 3rd and $50 for the 4th donation

$100 for the 5th donation (which is weird because they say they need at least 6 to make a dose of medicine so I'm not sure why it's like that)

$50 for the 6th donation (if it's within the same month) and every subsequent donation adds $5 to your running total that month [In a new month, it starts at $25]. Since you can donate basically up to 2x a week that can add up pretty quickly, but remember, its 2 hours out of your day. So, it's a toss up. Just think though, it's not just about getting money; you are saving lives, even if it's the pharmaceutical companies shilling for your bodily fluids.

I just donated for my 6th time. I will get up to 7 before I turn around and donate whole blood on September 1st. Then I have to wait 56 days before I can donate plasma again. My body needs a plasma break anyway. I've started to bruise easily and I have to take a double dose of my iron pills just to keep my levels high enough to pass the screening. Not to mention that I need to slam back even more protein with weight training and plasma donation. It can be tough. But, I thought I'd let you guys know the process just in case you were interested!



Thursday, August 24, 2017

I AM STILL IN AWE

You bet your bottom dollar that I would travel to see this eclipse. I may never see another one again in my lifetime, and a little travel and traffic isn't going to stop me from experiencing the greatest astronomical event ever.

Leading up to the big day was very stressful for me because I had planned on photographing it. Reading up on it and doing research (including downloading Photopills to my phone which gave me data about places, times, direction and azimuth) helped, but I am very much still an amateur and I knew I was only going to get one shot at this and if I messed it up I was going to be really upset. I wasn't going to expect perfection out of myself, but I needed this to be decent at least, which is why I knew I was going to do a time lapse.

I had also made my own solar filter by buying a flat sheet (certified of course) of material and cutting a circle to fit in between two UV filters. That worked amazingly well. I chose Lime, Oregon for my destination solely on it being in the direct path of totality (for the longest exposure time). I will talk more about my actual trip in another post, though. For now, I want to focus on the eclipse.

I do not have the words to express how amazing, how awesome, how incredible seeing the eclipse was for me. Let me try to describe it for you.

You're sitting in a camping chair at 9 o'clock in the morning, surrounded by hundreds of other people that are just as excited as you to watch this phenomenon. It's already at least 80 degrees outside; the sun is beating down on you and trying to burn your skin but you were smart enough to put sunscreen on. You begin to get anxious. At 9:08, you put on your very uncomfortable solar eclipse glasses that you got for free from the library and look up at the sun.

You see nothing.

But then, other people proclaim "I can see it! It's starting!" You look back up at the sun and finally notice it - just a little tiny shadow over one corner. Your heart beats faster. The heat from the sun sears your sensitive skin but you don't care. You lean back in your chair and stare at the sun until your eyes begin to cross. This is a very slow process, you think. You're excited, but can't look up forever. You take several breaks as the moon creeps closer to the center. You notice that the temperature is seeming to drop even though it should technically be getting hotter as the day goes on. The moon is not only blocking the light but it is blocking the heat. It's flipping awesome and very relieving. Staring up at the sun all this time was making you second guess if the amount of sunscreen you put on was enough.

You begin to feel an anxious excitement again as the moon gets closer and closer to the center. The sun is just a sliver now as you start to realize that the world around you is getting duller. It's not exactly getting darker per se, just oddly grayish, as if everything around you is losing color. What was once a temperature of 85 is now closer to 75.

Then, all at once, totality. There is a bright flash as the last remaining bit of light is being blocked by the moon, and you remove your solar glasses so that you can see what is going on. The world immediately plunges into darkness as if someone hit the light switch of the planet. It's not completely black - more like an early morning or late twilight. You notice Bailey's beads... they're little red specks on the corner of the sun before the moon completely covers it.Your heart seems to stop as the corona of the sun is now visible; undulating white wispy waves coming out of a black hole in the center. It reminds you of angel wings - you know this is what they look like even though you've never seen them. It's hard to breathe. You can't even think but to repeat how beautiful it is. A couple of stars appear, winking at you as the moon hogs all the glory in the moment.



It's so hard to look away, but you want to see what everything around you looks like. It's far from silent with so many people. The twilight seems very unnatural; it would be unnerving if you didn't know what was happening. Since not all the light is gone, the only stars you see are the two next to the sun - they are probably Venus and Mars. But, you can't look away too long - the eclipse is finite; you don't want to miss a single moment.



It's almost as if everything is taking in a collective breath and holding it. You wonder if time has stopped, but then another flash appears as the Diamond comes out - a bright ball of light in the corner, and you know it's over and you must put your uncomfortable solar glasses back on again. The light immediately returns and people clap and woot and yell as if the sun would bow at its performance. I would, if I were the sun.

Many people begin to pack up and leave now that the "best part" is over, but you can't tear yourself away. It's not over yet. The moon still has to pass over the other side. Color begins to return to your surroundings as the temperature begins to rise again. The only stragglers left are the astronomers and photographers.

Once it's finally over, time seems to resume. It's almost as if you were on another planet for 2-1/2 hours, where nothing existed but the sun and the moon, competing for space. 

Totality was so short, but it's now seared into your mind forever. The time, the travel, the traffic. It was all worth it for those two fleeting minutes of your life. A moment you will never forget for as long as you live.


Friday, July 7, 2017

Gel nails and IBX

My nails suck. And I've been trying to fix them for many years. The ends peel and thin the nail bed to the point where they are soft and pliable and then can easily tear. I haven't been able to grow my nails long for basically my whole life.

I've tried just about everything from Sally Hanson's line of Hard as Nails, to Essie's Millionails, to products like Nail-Aid Maximum Collagen builder. My diet has drastically improved over the years and I get enough iron and other nutrients; plus I've tried putting collagen powder in drinks and eating several months worth of Skin and Nails Biotin. I've also tried just soaking them in vitamin E oil and almond oil, which is basically all vitamin E only less viscous. I've tried gloves when I shower (although that didn't last very long; it's surprisingly annoying plus water still gets into the gloves) and painting my nails week after week to try and protect them from my hot showers [and life in general], which has been the main culprit in damaging my nails further. Nothing has worked. The problem with all these attempts is that they take several months of doing before you realize it's not working once the nail grows out. 

I'm pretty sure my issue is genetic at this point, but that's not stopping me from trying things. My latest attempt was deciding that gel nails was my answer. After buying all the stuff and painting it on, I was astounded. I loved the stuff; it made my nails hard and it lasted a good week before I even needed to make touch-ups. The problem was taking the gel off. As I went through the process each time, I was thinning out the nail plate while trying to get the base gel layer off; each subsequent application was making my nails thin and weak. Although I managed to keep the length of my nails in tact (they were growing, omg!) I was still making them worse.

And then I was introduced to IBX. I'm not sure how I heard about it online, but once I started seeing pictures and reading reviews, I was sold.



IBX works differently by sinking into the nail plate and fusing all the keratin layers together. Now, it is technically a long-term application system, which basically means you'll have to use it for a long while before you see any results, but I can tell you right now that after one application I have already noticed the difference and that's why I'm writing about it today.

My nails are still thin and pliable thanks to the gel, but they're not peeling. They've only grown a tiny bit for the last week but they haven't torn at all from being so thin. It's amazing.  (I clipped them all the way down in order to "start over" once I started using this). In the meantime I'm not applying any gel; just regular polish, so nothing is stopping my nails from tearing, and yet they're not. I'm almost crying in joy.

There's just one issue you need to know about before you rush out and buy it.
It is for "professional use only". It's not sold in stores anywhere. Technically, it's for nail salons so that they can charge a customer some $10 to add IBX to their gel regimen. But, thanks to forum posts, I found a website that supplies it (and no, not ebay, although you can find it there for super expensive). It's called beautysupplycanada.com, and you actually need to register an account and be approved before you can even see the price (hint: it's $46.95 for the duo pack). So yeah, it's not cheap, but if it works it works and it's definitely worth it to me.

Once I grow my nails out for a full cycle, I'll start putting gel polish back on, which makes me super excited. I keep ordering new colors from Wish for like $1 each and they take a whole month to come but who cares lol they're stacking up and I can't wait to try them!


Sunday, June 18, 2017

WTF Lyft?

Dear Lyft,

I have a suggestion for you. Do you have a suggestion box? Probably one that looks like this:



But I'll try anyway. This is a change that probably wouldn't be too difficult to implement and wouldn't cost you any money (hooray!) I mean, now that you have a dedicated driver app, which you like to point out that that means more features can be added (detailed driver summary anyone??) I would hope this would be something that can be easily changed. Here it is.

Why do we, as drivers, need to know how much we could have made? I'm trying to figure it out.
Here's my example:

That big number in bold at the top? Not what I made. Not the "driver payout". That number is the tiny one under "balance". In other words, Lyft took its cut of $13.98 and I get paid the rest.

This has two possibilities that I can think of. They want us to feel like we're making more money than we actually are. Or, they like the bait and switch technique.

Lyft: Here's how much you could have made if we hadn't taken out 25%! Haha!

Lyft: Here's how much you made but not really.

Why - WHY - would I ever in my life want to know how much I would make before Lyft took its cut, and why is it so prevalent at the top of the screen to confuse me? If I wanted to know how much money I made without the 25% cut, I could do the math. But I have no reason to. If I really cared, I could look at my driver summary.

The reason I bring this up and the reason it really really bugs me is a ride I gave just yesterday. The guy asked me how much this trip would cost because he's not the one who ordered the ride. I told him that I didn't know until after it was all said and done. Well, he stuck around (unloading his stuff) and after I rated him I let him know that I made $11.98 so he would probably be charged a bit more.

Well that was my last ride of the day, and because of that incident, I specifically remembered that fare so I went home and got onto the Lyft website to look at my detailed driver summary (again - put this on the Lyft driver app I hope???) and did not see an $11.98 payout anywhere. No, the total was $8.98.
Wait.
Are you trying to tell me that not only does Lyft give a big bold number at the top of my app for an amount I'm not getting, but it also TELLS ME THE AMOUNT BEFORE LYFT'S CUT FOR EACH RIDE?

Are you fucking kidding me, Lyft? Sorry for the language but what the hell?! Why in God's name would you want to make drivers feel good about their payout just to be disappointed when they look at their summary/actually get paid? Now I feel disheartened. Now, I will do a long drive, see a payout that feels good for the amount of driving I did, and then remember that that's not what I'm actually getting paid. Gee, thanks.

This is stupid. It makes no sense. Uber doesn't do this. For all it's faults, at least it gives you a detailed summary of each payout and tells you exactly what you're getting paid. It doesn't throw these happy numbers at your face just to make you sad later. Ugh I am so upset by this, mostly because I don't understand why your system was built this way in the first place.

Please, please change it.

/end rant