Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The best intentions

So something always seems to come up. Always.

Have you ever felt like the universe has something against you? Like there is some Karma that you have to repay, but that you have never been told about?

I get a call yesterday as I'm getting dressed after working out - did this after work because Diane phones, and it was $0.25 wing night at Frickers, so we were heading there after Matt got back from open gym at 7:30 - i.e. I had plenty of time after work instead of doing it at lunch. But I digress. She calls about 6:30.

It is cold. The high outside yesterday was about 27F. Inside the house it is 57F. The fricking furnace has quit again. Again! In the four years I've had this house (my first), this is the third time it has gone out - always when it is bitterly cold. Not a couple of weeks ago when it was 60 during the day, and it just came on a little. Not at Thanksgiving when it dropped down then warmed up again. No, on the coldest night so far. At least, for once, it didn't happen on Friday night (which it has the other two times) and we would have to wait until Monday to get the parts.

Ah, but not everything goes wrong for once. Because in the seminars and our local parent support group, we actually know some people in that business - the owners of Kettering Heating and Air. So they had someone out pretty quickly, and he got it working. I wish we knew them last year at this time when it went out - because then maybe they would have seen the repairs that the other guy MISSED and prevented this whole thing! That is the most frustrating part - this was caused by something simple that needs to be replaced (we need to call for a normal service call to get the hose replaced and everything else checked out), which was obvious to the technician. And it wasn't something that broke suddenly - the hose probably should have been replaced a couple of year ago, before it started leaking and doing the damage it did.

Live and learn I guess. Get the thing checked once a year - kind of like getting your car oil changed. But at least we have heat again - it was warming up when we went to bed, and back to normal this morning.

Oh, and I got my replacement printer cartridge (for the defective one that I ordered) yesterday. So at least Dell was quick to get that out - for taking what seemed like forever on the chat session (over an hour - very very slow responses).

So maybe try to get some writing done tonight after Weight Watchers - where I figure I'll probably lose a point again as a reward for doing well. (You've been working real hard, and sticking to your diet - so now you get to eat less! Oh - and your exercise is also less effective, so you have to do more of that as well. And that stuff about you being less hungry - yeah that was bull$#it!). :-)

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Paranoid, with delusions of Adequacy

So it was a fun weekend. Diane received here Gold Club sales award (for selling over $1 million (insert Dr. Evil quote saying "One Million Dollars" here) last year) as well as a special award from the closing company. She drank a bit much there, but it was ok. I sat and clapped and tried to be the good, supportive wife.

Then on Sunday we almost forgot that we were going to the Funny Bone with our friends - that was a lot of fun as always. I had never heard of any of the comics, though the opening act was a local guy we had seen before. I know this because there can't be two former Dayton teachers doing standup around her. His bit translating the history of America using cookies is really good (The crackers came from across the sink. The part about sending the Dorritos back under the sink is real funny).

Oh yeah, and I'm an idiot. Not that it is a surprise to anyone. I spent most of Friday night attempting to decipher the IRS site and the tax code, to figure out how badly I had screwed the band over. I also made some calls. It turns out we have NEVER filed a tax return for the band. And until August we have never had to. Now we do (a 990 or whatever). But the law was signed in August, and our fiscal year ended in May. So we don't have to file for last year, just this year onward. So we aren't screwed. We aren't behind. The sky isn't falling, and I had to send out a bit of red-faced explanation stating, once again, that I'm an idiot.

In other thoughts, I need to get back to writing. Not that I'm a writer or anything, but I do find I enjoy the little bits I do. I find it kind of weird though that when I actually have free time and can do these things, I don't. It is only when I seem to be overwhelmed that they bubble up and become yet another source of stress - but they get done. So I need to sit down tonight and get some done. Update the WLD blog - we haven't played since before Christmas - this should be caught up, especially since we may finally play again this Thursday. Write another chapter of my life story. And not just sit on my butt in front of the boob tube.

Friday, January 26, 2007



No, nobody is censoring this (that I know of). I just want to keep it somewhat family friendly, and that was what was going through my head.

The fecal material has impacted the rotational cooling device.

I'm the treasurer for our high school band boosters. And today I found out that I am over three months late filing our tax returns. I was stupid, and assumed that it was calendar year - but for organizations it is fiscal year, and ours ends when school ends.

I didn't like the previous records and have had a hell of a time trying to find what I need in them, and can't balance the checking account with the budget at all. That is one thing I've tried to do differently - keep all money that comes in or goes out tied directly to the budget.

So tonight and this weekend is reading what is needed to get last years filed, and writing a letter to try and not get fined for being late, as well as doing a thorough search of all the records I have given for previous returns - I've not seen anything yet, but I haven't done a deep dig through both file boxes. I sure hope those are there, it will make doing it again much simpler.

Looks to be a fun weekend.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Half way (officially) - finally!

Yep, reached the half way point last night - and I'm fairly happy because it has been a bit more of a struggle since Christmas; having two weeks where I went backward.

So I'm down 41.2 lbs - to 211.6. Slightly over half way to my goal for now. The lowest I can remember being as an adult was 202 several years ago when I was on Atkins - right before I had my gall bladder out and never got back on that. I've actually lost more now than I did then, but this time I started higher. That diet I lost 36 lbs - but gained 50 in the four years since I stopped it.

I can't imagine what I'll look like at 172. I still see myself as fat - though I've gotten several comments lately about it - all of them interestingly enough seem to think it was very sudden, and not since August.

The cool thing is now I'm no longer obese - I'm officially overwieght (BMI of 29.5).

Two thoughts also occur to me with this. One is that if I want to get my weight where it should be and keep it there, then I can pretty much never go back to the way things were - eating stuff like double quarter pounders and big steaks. But then the other thought hit me last night - and that was how much do I want that anymore?

I haven't been to McDonalds in over five months. Yes, a Sausage McMuffin w/Egg still sounds so good, but a burger doesn't really. Ok, I still have a weakness for KFC - but I do much better about it, and not eating as much as I used to. (I do wish they would quantify exactly what a 'serving' of their sides is though - good nutritional information for them except for that). I've been wanting to eat fish a bit more - and eating shellfish quite a bit more.

The thing I don't like is thinking about food all the time - I would like to get out of that mode, so I can eat 'healthy' and not have to be thinking about it all the time. And yes, I still feel hungry a lot - and writing about it now isn't helping that either. So a big glass of water for now (because we have parent teacher conferences tonight, then we have to call Katie's family rep, then a meeting for the band booster by-laws - so we are picking up chicken between things - and I have to save my points :-) and try to think of something else!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Hump Day

Hump day. Over the hump and slide into the weekend. Usually thought of as a good thing to most people, but a different interpretation occurred to me a while day.

Whether or not hump day is good depends on your perspective - are you the dog or the leg?

Lately I've felt like a solitary leg in a room full of randy mutts, and it has been hump day every day.

On happier thoughts - I got a new toy! I got a new toy!

Brand new, 21" Dell flat panel monitor. It is for work, but boy is this thing huge! And I'm extending my desktop to it, so that while I can't quite get twice as much done, at least I can see a little bit more of what I am doing.

Man I need one of these at home! The boys would go nuts playing games on this sweet puppy! And I thought my laptop had a nice 15" monitor.


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Friday, January 19, 2007

French Lick - NOT

What a name - French Lick Indiana. I wonder if it is down the road from French Kiss? Either way, it doesn't sound all that appealing to me. But Diane's friend and co-worker loves to go to casino's (as does she), and gave us a free night there. Tomorrow.

And now I have to work. So I won't be going, even though I could work remotely. But I'm not going to drive for four hours to sit and work from a hotel room. Plus this way it will be a little less expensive for us - I won't have to eat there or blow any money at the casino after all.

Not that I want to be in here, working on artificial deadlines, but it beats a kick in the face. Slightly.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


Ah yes, a quick visit to "Theodoric Of York, Medieval Barber" this morning for a good bloodletting.

Actually the CBC gave me a call again to donate, and the only way I could fit it into my schedule was to go at 7:00 am today. The problem with all this is that Diane got me started doing Apherisis, which is platellete and plasma donations. Not a big deal, but I'm a slow bleeder - and in fact they finally gave up and called time after I had been hooked up to the machine for two hours and still wasn't finished.

I'm conflicted, because I feel that it is good to give blood, they keep asking me to, and then I end up wasting half a day (with the half hour screening process and drive) - and I'm not even sure they can use it since it isn't a full donation. I've had problems before with some of the machines, where they had to stop it because it wasn't working right. Not only that, but after about an hour or so, it seems like the attitude of the vampires there (or phlebotimists, or nurses, or whatever they are) changes a bit - I start feeling like a burden. The last few times I've almost felt ashamed because of the time it took, like I'm a burden to them or something. And the person who I start with is not the one that ends taking me off at the end.

It's not like there are no empty machines when I leave, so I don't appear to be holding anything up. And once I'm hooked up it isn't like they have to do a whole lot - most of the time (until today) everything goes fine (if long) and they don't even have to adjust the machine. Even today, it only went off about 3 times. But I guess just lying there quietly, listening to my ipod, having my blood sucked out, spun and pumped back in for two hours just makes me a big burden to them. I don't know.

It does feel like a complete waste of time to have it stopped close to 90% of the way done.

And to make it worse, I gave up my workout today because of it. Now normally we would have our weigh in tonight, so I'd work through lunch and work out at 5 (just before weighing in at 6:30). So when they called to ask me to come in, I figured I could do it early and make up some of the time at lunch (since I didn't work out at lunch on Wednesdays anyway). So I told my boss I'd be in late (knowing it would take me a while) and work through lunch today. Then Diane found out that Jill Conner Brown is at Books & Company in The Greene tonight, so we went and weighed in last night instead (on the positive side, I did lose the 1.8 lbs I gained last week, so I'm back to 214). But it also means I need to head over there right after work (we know there will be a big line, and since I'm right down the street I'll go there right after work to get a line number so she can get her stuff signed). And thus no workout.

I hate when real life interferes with my plans ;-) (God am I a whiner or what!)

The sacrifices I make - I should be a saint :-)

Monday, January 15, 2007

Shadow of my former self

That is how my wife described me as I stepped out of the shower this morning, referring (I believe) to my weight loss. (Otherwise it isn't nearly as positive a comment, but being male, I will take it as intended, not in the worst possible way that it could be).

I (finally) put away my 44 pants - after officially losing 37 lbs they just hang on me, and are uncomfortable now because my belt bunches them so much to keep them up. Today I pulled out some older 42's - and they are loose. In addition, they aren't the stretchy ones that I've been buying for so long. I may actually be able to get into my old 40's, though I haven't tried quite yet.

When I look in a mirror, it is an improvement. My BMI still shows that I'm obese (at 30), but it is down from 35 that is was. I'm close to just being overweight, which is good.

My point is (and yes, for once I do have a point, aside from the one on my head) that I still don't feel like I've done much. When I look down I still only see a fat, flabby belly. It never was quite so big that I had "dickeydo" disease (you know, where your belly sticks out further than your dickey do) but I still feel fat. Not uncomfortable, that went away fairly quickly, and my snoring and sleep apnea are pretty much gone, but still I just don't feel like I've done much.

Maybe it's a low self-esteem thing, I don't know. It sure seems that I've never really liked my body; either I was too skinny as a kid, or too fat as an adult. I can't really imagine what it will be like to be under 200 lbs - even though I was very close four years ago.

Also, why is it so much harder now that I have more points to eat each day? It should be easier, but I find that I'm struggling more now that I remember doing before. Is it because I've relaxed a bit from what I did (having baked potato chips (technically they are potato crisps, not chips) with lunch that I wouldn't allow myself before)? I feel like I'm obsessed with this, and yet the program seems to encourage it. Food and exercise are constantly on my mind it seems - planning on my next meal, if I can have a snack and what it will be, what I can eat for dinner, worrying on the days I can't get any exercise. Is that healthy?

Is that one of the changes after hitting my goal, which is 43 lbs away? (I figure 80 is a good, round figure, and puts me a pounds inside of my goal range, so that if I gain a little I'm not instantly back to being fat. And it is the original top of the old program range as well). I shouldn't have to constantly be worrying and tracking everything.

I think part of it was gaining so much last week - that has really bothered me. Before even my bad weeks I lost. I think I'm headed for a good week, but then at this time last week I thought so as well. But they say the scale never lies, so we will see on Wednesday.

Now, on a completely unrelated note: I need to find the time to do some writing - not just this blog stuff, or even my life story, which I also need to work on, but I've just had some thoughts that I'd like to explore more in depth, and I'm not sure how to even begin. Maybe this is the place, I don't know. I'm not even sure how to go about exploring philosophy. But it has been itching at the back of my skull for quite some time. I guess the main idea I want to explore, so that I will understand it more, is "Why are the things we define/recognize as 'Good' always the difficult ones, while the 'Evil/Bad/Selfish' actions are so easy?"

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Delusions of Adequacy

Ah, yet another blazing opportunity to keep my huge ego in check. And believe me, I need all of those I can get.

Played in a Confrontation tournament yesterday. A lot of fun. But I decided to not go with the 'broken' lists that people have said I've taken before, and went with a lot of cheaper Wolfen, and no predators.

Got my ass kicked, and hard. Having a dragon eat half your army on turn two kind of smarts a little. Trying to have my 'balanced' list compete against a 200 pt dragon character who can summon a 175 pt dragon for free - no contest.

Not like the first game - where I got kicked even worse (if that is possible) because there I didn't manage to kill a single model of my opponent - at least against the dragon I did kill a few elves before being completely wiped off the board. But at least there it seemed to be a bit more balanced - it was his entire force that was kicking my butt, not one model.

I'm a bit conflicted though. On one hand I'm against all the restrictions that the Italians and Belgians are pushing, and really believe you should be able to take nearly anything. On the other, I've always felt that some armies just can't compete against some things - i.e. dragons. And now that they have a dragon character (at least before, if you took a dragon you couldn't take much of anything else because you had to take a character as well, but now it can be both.
That one 200 pt model took out my entire 500 pt force, most in one turn.

I try really hard not to complain - but man some of these spanking really smart. (I've faced knight armies as well that have wiped me out to the man without taking a wound also).

In the end what frustrates me a lot is that I know I'm a mediocre player and painter. (Of course you can check out my models here) but I'm stuck in an area of extremely stong players and painters. To the point where the top 4 players in the nation all come to the local tournaments here last year - and most of the time kick my butt. (The number 1 ranked player from last year has basically quit the game, and #2-4 were there yesterday (the #4 ranked player had the dragon that so thoroughly kicked my ass in the third game - he won the trip to France at Origins last year (ironically, with the almost the identical list I would have brought had I played in that tournament)). Now granted, these guys are good players, and great painters - I just don't feel in their league at all. I get a bit lucky, but they hand me my ass every time we meet, consistently.

But it does keep my ego in check any time it threatens to do something stupid, like make me feel adequate or anything.

Friday, January 12, 2007

da blues




I'm just feeling down right now. It seems like things are just going badly, and I'm having a real hard time rolling with the punches and letting it go. Gaining weight. Being turned down to staff Discovery. Work right now really sucks. We have a major project that is due to begin testing on Monday, and while development is done, getting it deployed is a nightmare. And all this rush, but they plan on being in test for like 9 months! So I have a hard time coming up with a sense of urgency about it.

What is really getting me is just that I've felt like this for a couple of weeks now, and since I have a past history of depression, I try to watch for when I start moving into a depressive episode so that I can take care of it - whether is means going back on welbutrin for a few months or what.

Thursday, January 11, 2007


Damn. So, thinking back, I figure I just waaaay under estimated my points, probably starting Friday night, but defintitely Saturday and Sunday at Great Wolf Lodge - eating too much. Then not really trying to cut back the rest of the week to make up for it. Also Tuesday night, when we went to bd's Mongolian Grill, thinking I could 'treat' myself and not just have shrimp and scallops, and again probably under estimating.

But up 1.8 lbs - that just shocked me. I knew it didn't look good, but I didn't think it would be that bad.

2 out of the last 3 weeks I've gained. So officially I stand at 37 lbs down, 215.8 lbs.

I do think the new plan is a bit more difficult, as I have no leeway to go over like I did. So adding more points makes it harder, not easier. Especially when they so push that you should eat your points every day, it ends up being much more exacting.

Then to top things off I went and bought a Baby Ruth candy bar last night. Not that I can't have some candy, but I didn't really need it.

Then, to top things off, my request to staff Discovery next month was turned down - apparently it is full. So I cancelled my request for Focus - I really wanted to do the pair and follow a group through. But that gives me 5 vacation days back, which is good, especially if I'll need them to visit Katie.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

After Christmas

Ok, so I'm late, slow and lazy. My story is that I've just been really busy, and haven't been home on a weekend yet. Still, having my Christmas lights still up on January 9th - ok that is a bit excessive.

Of course, when I finally get home on an evening with nothing else going on, and there is a tiny bit of light out, is it still one of the nearly 60 degree days? No, by the time I can get my butt outside it is finally acting like January, and it is friggin cold!

But I get the lights down. It is a bit white trash, but we tend to accumulate junk on our front porch. Most of it is finally gone, but we still have a big, old dresser out there - and I actually really like it as it is a great place to store the christmas lights!

And I took down the tree and inside lights as well last night, so everything is finally back to, well I hate to call my life normal, but as normal as it gets.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


I've said before that I'm a creature of habit, and like a routine. I don't know if that is good or bad, but it does seem to work for me.

I was down 4.2 lbs this week - and I attribute it to getting back to my normal routine. I also noticed that both weeks I've done 'badly' were when I wasn't able to follow my routine for one reason or another, and both were followed up by 'big' weeks. It makes me wonder if it wasn't the change that made the bad week show up, as opposed to actually not loosing those weeks.

I don't see where I should have lost over 4 lbs over the new year, but it does make sense that I've actually lost 2 each week, and the one weigh in just didn't reflect it.

Or I could be just making stuff up again. But I'm now at 214, which is 38.8 lbs lighter than what I was in August, and I have now officially lost more weight on Weight Watchers than on any other program, including the 36 lbs I lost on Atkins 5 years ago. 12 more lbs and I'll weigh less than I can ever remember as well (ok, I was a skinny runt in high school (when I graduated I was wearing 28" waist pants, but that won't ever happen again, and I don't want it). But I can't remember when I was under 200 before. I remember getting pissed during my divorce at having to buy "fat" pants - but I don't remember if those were 44's or 42's at the time. Even my 42's fit loosely right now, and the 44's are almost to the point where, even with a belt, I can't wear them. Even my boxers that I wear to bed are hanging on me - soon they won't even do that - they'll just fall down when I take a breath.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

New Year!

Happy New Year, to both of my readers.

Ok, I'm just kidding. I know that is exagerating it quite a bit to think that I have two readers, but I can always hope.

I'm finally back at work, meaning that once again I'm wasting time at lunch
sending off random thoughts into the ether. Don't get me wrong, I like my job ok. Some days much more than others (and unfortunately lately it has been a vast majority of the latter). But so far it keeps the lights on and the bills paid. The one nice thing is being able to get back into a routine.

I have one bit of frustration over the holidays, and vacations as well. I am definitely a creature of habit. I find the best way (for me) to do something, and I stick with it. Being off of work for 11 days blew that all to hell and back. I gained weight last week, I haven't been able to work out like I want because everywhere is closed for the holidays, I haven't been drinking my water or eating my veggies (ok, so I don't eat my veggies most days anyway). I do like a bit of routine that I can work with.

So I'm back to my usual routine at work. Worked out at lunch, had a sandwich and cup-a-soup for lunch (though with more points I added in some baked potato chips). Tomorrow I plan to work out after work, right before weighing in, and going very heavy on the water all day (though I don't know yet if I'll do the liquids all day beforehand or not - that isn't such a good habit).

Of course, weigh-in days are the one day I can actually do lunch out - but the one day when I don't want to eat much, at least before I weigh in. Afterward I then end up with so many extra points I can kind of pig out.

On a related note, I think that with the new Weight Watchers system it is a little harder, having more points. I know that doesn't make sense, but let me explain. Before, I felt that when I stuck to the plan perfectly I wasn't actually getting enough food, falling into that 'too few' calories area, where you don't easily lose weight. So I'd go over a bit on weekends, and I'd did fairly well. Now, they've increased my points, which makes up for what I felt was missing, so I can't afford to go over at all. So on a weekly basis I'm not supposed to be eating what I was cheating with before. And if I go over, it now matters MUCH more than it did before. Really, I've added more than a days worth of points, and I don't think before I ever went 35 points over when I went over. I can't really check, because when I blow it and go over I quit tracking (like I did Sunday night - I just marked down all the rest of my points for the day and week, and didn't track it).

Tomorrow will tell, but I don't think it will be all that bad. Not all that good, but I don't think I will have gained.

Now to get back to doing audit reports for work. :-(