Untangling Everything

In retrospect, any single one the things that I had described in the previous posts about migraines over the course of a lifetime would be innocuous:

  • chronic persistence of worsening migraines
  • some occasional, mild discomfort with abdominal exertion
  • occasional remarks from various practitioners over the past two decades that my WBC was on the higher end of average
  • significant injury (in 2016) that presented as a rib fracture, but no bruising observed and Xray revealed nothing
  • infection — demonstrable, evidential

We still don’t understand what the exact cause of the infection was. It’s not resolved until we’re certain of the vector itself. So, the big question would be: how was it contracted? When? How long did I have it? Was it something that I’d had since the 1980s? Did I live through Basic Training in 1989 with it? Was it worsened from the 2016 injury? And did that lead to the fall in 2017?

Sure, it’s been identified and treated. Mitigated, perhaps. But not eliminated.

Yet, I find myself wondering whether the infection itself, and the periodic brief episodes of light-headedness — not quite a syncope episode, but brief periods (fleeting, much like PVCs) of a half-second or less experienced in October, November, and December of that year — perhaps in a light-headed moment when I was atop the ladder, I fell.

Apart from the fall itself, any one of the issues above, by themselves, would be insignificant. Yet, together, over a lifetime, they would combine to lead to a realization which ultimately stopped the migraines with which I was contending.

From one perspective, I suppose that it could be said that I had to nearly die in order to accidentally stumble into a cure for the life-long migraines.


Sharing Mac Folders with Windows

If you’re wishing to access a Mac file share from a Windows machine, there’s one thing needed that’s often overlooked.

First, assume you’re just needing to have Windows machines access a file share presented from the Mac.

Creating the share — you can use any folder you wish, or even a drive. I’ll just use an existing folder to share with a Windows machine — and because I lack the “creative naming” gene, I’ll just call it WinBackups and put it on one of my Data drives.

Next, we’ll go to Sharing in System Preferences to add it as a File Sharing object. Here, you can see that I have one for Backups, a default public Drop Box for my own account, and the new…

I’ve set it to No Access for everyone, and because I’m going to use my own account, added it for Read & Write access.

Next, ensure it’s presented as a Windows share. Right-click the share name then click Advanced Options. Because I need to exist in a platform-agnostic world, ensure Share over is SMB and AFP. Everything else can be left unchecked.

Click OK.

And try from Windows…

That’s annoying.

But not to worry!

There’s another step — strangely — because some Windows computers handle the password exchange differently. So, in a way, Mac passwords and password handling is too secure (?), or something.

In System Preferences, go to Sharing > File Sharing > select the specific share point, then click Options.

Enable the checkbox to Share files and folders using SMB. Next, check off each username from the list presented. You’ll need to type each user’s password when prompted.

Click Done.

And, viewing it from DOS, because why not:

C:\Users\esthe>net view
Server Name            Remark

\\JOHNS-IMAC           John's iMac
The command completed successfully.

C:\Users\esthe>net view \\johns-imac
Shared resources at \\johns-imac

Share name                    Type  Used as  Comment

Backups                       Disk
John Shirley's Public Folder  Disk
WinBackups                    Disk
The command completed successfully.

C:\Users\esthe>net use u: \johns-imac\winbackups
The command completed successfully.

C:\Users\esthe>dir u:
 Volume in drive U is Data
 Volume Serial Number is 0000-0000

 Directory of U:\

03/07/2020  03:02 PM    <DIR>            .
03/07/2020  03:02 PM    <DIR>            ..
02/24/2020  07:36 PM     1,646,760,758 Microsoft_Office_16.34.20020900_BusinessPro_Installer.pkg
03/07/2020  03:01 PM    <DIR>            SCC
03/07/2020  03:02 PM    <DIR>            SFCC
               1 File(s) 1,646,760,758 bytes
               4 Dir(s) 1,637,838,020,608 bytes free

C:\Users\esthe>shutdown /s /f /t 0



A Homophone is, of course, a word that has an identical pronunciation to another word but differs in meaning.

Certainly not an English-only concept, Homophones can be found across many (most?) other languages. In German, I know of many (more perhaps), and can even think of several in Spanish.

In English, the pronunciation can vary slightly depending upon region and dialect. I’ve marked the ones that, for me, tend to have a subtly different pronunciation:

  • accept, except*
  • affect, effect*
  • allowed, aloud
  • ant, aunt*
  • ate, eight
  • bare, bear
  • bean, been
  • blue, blew
  • break, brake
  • cell, sell, sale*
  • cereal, serial
  • cite, site
  • compliment, complement
  • die, dye
  • doe, dough
  • fair, fare
  • flour, flower
  • foreward, forward
  • four, for, 4
  • great, grate
  • heal, heel
  • hear, here
  • hour, our
  • idle, idol*
  • it’s, its
  • knight, night
  • knot, not, naught
  • poor, pour
  • right, write
  • scent, cent
  • sea, see
  • sole, soul
  • son, sun
  • steal, steel
  • stele, stela
  • tale, tail
  • then, than*
  • they’re, there, their
  • to, too, two, 2
  • whether, weather
  • you’re, your*
  • you, u

The End of the Chapter?

…on our last episode.

I mentioned antibiotics… I underwent an extraordinarily intense, many weeks-long IV antibiotic regimen to address what was determined to be a Streptococcus anginosus infection.

What’s curious, I think, is that Strep-a is typically an ENT infection — it’s that “strep throat” thing. Same species of bacteria. And, yet, there it was having taken up residence in my liver. One might wonder, how in the world such a thing could get there. There aren’t many plausible vectors. But, there it was.

Nearing the end of the primary antibiotics — about two weeks worth — it dawned on me that I didn’t have migraines anymore.

The migraines had ceased.

The assorted and worsening symptoms of the prodrome with which I had endured for so many years. The classic “migraine” headache.



Now, about 18 months later, I haven’t had any recurrence of a migraine. I had also not been aware of until it was gone, that I had some abdominal discomfort — that I thought was just normal — for decades. Since as far back as 1988 or so.

Did the aggressive antibiotics put a stop to them? Scientifically, I’d say they didn’t. But looking back at all of the small, overlooked, issues that’d I’d become accustomed and desensitized to, I’m rather confident that there’s a solid link between them.

My experience is little more than a single data point — and a single data point does not a trend make.

But it’s interesting and something of a curiosity, to me, that the life-long recurrence of migraines completely ceased after the intense IV antibiotic put quite an abrupt halt to the unperceived Streptococcus anginosus infection.

Obviously, we can’t subject everyone with migraines to full-body CT scans in pursuit of zebras, treat the symptoms. But I think it would be interesting to investigate and observe the WBC trend is in those otherwise healthy patients who suffer from frequent migraines. But it wouldn’t be unreasonable to consider that an infection may be contributing.

* A few days before posting this, I had shared this backstory tale with my physiologist. We both reviewed the abdominal CT scans from August 2018 and the scans captured on the date of the fall (December 2017). We’re in agreement that it’s simply inconclusive. The scans do not provide any visible indication of infection within any organs, liver or otherwise. Yes, the scans from 2018 absolutely make clear that there was a significant abscess. But from 2017, there wasn’t enough information to indicate “Yes, there is.” Nor “No, there isn’t”.

Further study is needed.