Monday, December 10, 2012
Starting to remember dreams after I wake, it's twice in a couple of months it's happened, when the usual rate seemed to be once every two years. But of course, that could be a product of faulty memory in and of itself. Anyway, after about 4 hours of sleep, I woke from a dream of a carousel breaking apart. Rather than do the smart thing of rolling over and going back to sleep, I reached for the phone to soon the darn wheel. 56 day streak, don'tcha know? Feel like DiMaggio. But then I saw on the friend feed that someone listed a blog and it had links, and those links had links and now it's an hour later and I'm awake. Must say, I've developed some bad habits that I'd be well off unlearning.
Anyway, this early AM, I'm musing on the bounty of gym visits I've harvested in the past 6 weeks. In this space, I've previously noted how I'd hardly ever go to the gym when I lived 2 miles away, and am making the effort now that I'm 8 miles away. Hoping to continue going to the gym when I get to Michigan, but we'll see if that happens. Need to replace ugly t shirt with some other carrot, for one thing.
Having gone to the gym so often, Sunday's trip seemed a little tame. About a half hour on the stationary bike, the same on the elliptical, 10 minutes rowing. Didn't shoot a basketball or hit the punching bag, thought about doing exercise ball stuff ( crunches, largely) but declined for going home to watch the Lions and Packers play.
On the drive home, I'm thinking to myself, wow, what a slacker I was today. And it took a couple of minutes to cut through that thought and realize that two months ago, my reaction would have been more along the lines of "good job getting to the gym woo hoo".
Now, I'm not entirely sure that this is a good thing. The accelerated pace is borough on entirely by the need to go often enough to get that t shirt before I move away. If I hadn't been on the verge of moving, I think I'd still go more often because of that dangling prize, but it'd be at a much much more relaxed pace. And as such, even if I find and join a gym in Michigan soon, I'm unlikely to recreate the 4-5 times a week pace I've been hitting lately. Curious how I'll react then, given the (mild) self-critism I found myself indulging in when, objectively, I did put in an hour of exercise.
Given the thoughts above, is the key here that it was an hour, or that the nature of the hour might not have been as intense as recent such hours. My answer's probably changed from a couple of months ago, and might be different yet a couple of months hence.
One other thought occurring to me and needing recording lest I forget about it before I next wake up: despite all this recent exercise...I DON'T love exercise. I don't have a need to get to the gym, except for the incentive mentioned ad nauseum. Fear that's a recipe for backsliding.
Sunday, December 09, 2012
Had lunch with a friend Saturday. I got to pick the place, so I went with the Free House, so I could get an ABLT. The owners of that place also run my favorite bar in town, and the ABLT at the bar (The Library) has avocado paste, and one can order Cajun fries on the side. The Free House is a slightly fancier place, with a couple of different bar areas, with distinct looks, and a trio of dining spaces. The ABLT there is similarly upscale with sliced avocado instead of the paste. And, instead of cajun fries, they have garlic parmesan fries with parmesan flakes rather than sprinkles adorning the fries. Delicious stuff, less friendly dietarily than the Cajun fries, I suspect. But no matter, it's what I went there for and its what I got.
I got there a few minutes before my friend, was seated, asked for some water to start. Now, this is a place with quite a good selection of beers from around Wisconsin, and I'd intended to grab one...but I never quite got around to it. It wasn't because we had a quick lunch, as we were there nearly three hours. Might have had something to do with the idea that I was going to the gym afterwards, something that didn't end up happening. Maybe it had to do with the hint of downward scale movement that morning and not wanting to jinx that. Not sure, really. It didn't have to do with the topics discussed, as we were in full ramble mode. Lots of discussion about her golden retriever puppy, as he's a relatively new addition. I guess I just never got around to grabbing that beer.
After lunch (getting on toward 4 pm, as we met at 1), she asked if I wanted to meet the puppy and of course I said yes. Ended up hanging out with her the rest of the day, and playing with not just her golden, but her housemate's Pomeranian, and a mini black poodle they were dog sitting. Lots of puppy love Saturday, just a wonderful relaxing day...at least until a couple more of our friends showed up and we watched the Da Vinci Code. The movie was a lot better than I remembered it being, and I might be tempted to stop the next time I see it on TV.
The weird thing about the day was that lunch was the heavy meal of the day. After we returned to my friend's place, we didn't have a specific "meal" for dinner. Her diet is relatively spartan due to a host of allergies and intolerances, and so when she first got hungry in the evening, she microwaved a steamer bag of broccoli, and that was essentially the main course. Broccoli with some garlic salt (I was offered more condiments, but half the time, I'm satisfied with garlic and pepper...case of simple tastes rather than rude host!). Later, we did a quick grocery store run, to grab a couple things before the other friends showed up. We went by the deli counter, but nothing looked great. I'd had a heavy and later than usual lunch, and a bowl of broccoli, so I just grabbed a bit of yogurt, and that ended up being the second course of my evening, with frozen yogurt as a dessert. It was rather strange for me, as I'm usually doing the traditional heaviest meal in the evening thing, but I wasn't ever really hungry in the evening, so it felt fine. Maybe it was a case of being distracted by the dogs?
Never did make it to the gym, leaving me 6 days for the four visits I need for the ugly t shirt. Suspect I can get there, despite social engagements and other obligations. I have put in too much sweat not to collect on this prize, dubious though it may be!
Friday, December 07, 2012
If you ask me about places I'll miss in Madison after I move away, a food pantry will be near the top of the list. The name of the place is The River, located near the airport in Madison. I've been fortunate enough to not need to be a client of the pantry, despite unenployment. Instead, it is one of those places that you can go to, help out in a small way, and feel good about both for yourself, and for the crucial good it does for those it helps.
It's a place that certainly faith based, but doesn't club you over the head with that aspect of its function. That's something I definitely have appreciated over the years, due to my own not very religious tendencies. Funny thing, I first volunteered there when tagging along with an ex girlfriend's church life group, and I continued going there even after that relationship ended over issue of religion. I don't think its something I would have continued doing if the religious aspect was an in your face presence, as can be the case at other food pantries (especially those associated with specific churches, which is understandable).
Basically, it's a place I looked forward to getting to whenever I could, even when it meant a 45 minute commute through rush hour traffic on a Friday from my previous job. It's a place that I've volunteered at since 2006 or 2007, and tonight was the last time I'll go there on a Friday, the busiest session of the week. I'm planning on going to one of the midweek sessions next week, to get one last little fix of the good people who run the place, Andy and Jenny Czerkas, who've won awards for their work at the River. But I'm a little sad right now, because I'll definitely miss the River and its people.
Hoping to find something similar in the Ann Arbor area.
Thursday, December 06, 2012
Went to see the band Psychostick play the other night, the finest practitioners of the humorcore genre (mixing comedy and metal). If you've heard of them, it's probably for their Beer song (beer is good! Beer is good! Beer is good! And stuff!). I've seen them before, and it was a great, fun time as ever. Favorite part of the night might have been the slow motion moshpit, as called for by the band's singer, and hilariously executed by a good portion of the crowd. Look on YouTube for a video titled "Psychostick - Numbers(drowning pool cover)/Sandwich/ABCDeath - FRESNO, CA - 9-14-12" for a taste of their humor, including the slow mo pit. I'd post a link but the mobile site for YouTube doesn't easily lend itself to figuring out a corresponding URL. But trust me, it's a very educational video.
Wednesday was a non starter, as my to do list gathered moss. Thawed chicken, ate soup. Wrote out a check, didn't have a stamp. Didn't go get a stamp. That sort of thing. Finally, went to the gym at 8, after watching Home Alone, after consuming many Doritos somewhat mindlessly. Now, that wasn't necessarily on the list, but with 10 days left to get to the gym 5 times for the ugly t shirt, it's a wild card entry on every day's to do list. Might have overdone it a bit, this edition of early AM (although at 6 AM, it's ok, right? Just early for me) blogging is another one where I've been asleep, and woke up and wasn't able to fall back asleep. Tweaky back the culprit this time, can't quite tell if it a real issue, or that I finally did enough crunches to feel them. Actually, now that I think about it, I had another go at the punching bag, and that might be the culprit, the way it feels. Funny thing, I didn't feel anything until I stood up to grab my water glass, placed, as ever, out of casual swatting's reach. And then I felt compelled to try and recall where I might have put the ibuprofen.
The fact that I'm sore does highlight something I've been wondering about during this month and change when I've been going, really for the first time in years, steadily to the gym. When I work out, I do so to sweat. I've been making pretenses at strength training, a couple sets of crunches and squats and miscellaneous stuff with various weight machines on most of these gym visits, but nothing structured. Moreover, I'm not doing anything particularly strenuous, where I'm really feeling it the next day. Figure I'm doing something, if not wrong, then at least halfassed (let's see if the lack of a hyphen gets it past the censors!). In that light, maybe the back is saying, "about time you put in a full cheeked effort!"
Curious what it'll say after a bit more sleep?
Wednesday, December 05, 2012
Thought comes of inadvertently landing on someone's spark page and deciding to befriend them on musical tastes alone. Did let the person know I'd done so, and gave the option of reciprocating, or simply telling me to go away. But I suppose there's the third option, of being unaware of the request. After a year plus on spark, I've probably done the same at some point. So, I'm curious to know if there's a way to look at mutual friends versus the one way streets. Might also tell me how many true (reciprocating) friends I have on here, and who I should jettison for not being aware of my existence. OK, so that's overstating things by a quantum leap, but it's where my brain is.
As said brain really should be sleeping, I think I'll try to see if I can't make that my reality.
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