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It'll be a good day

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Last weekend’s blc bingo included an instruction to “listen to your feel good” song. I don’t know that I have a particular go to track for that purpose, but on the weekend, I turned to the band, Yes, and the song, “It’ll be a good day (the River)” from their "The Ladder" album. Just something very hopeful, and peaceful about that song.


Today qualified, a few more pieces of paperwork dispatched efficiently to the sounds of a different Yes album (2001’s Magnification).

Went out to return library books, and took advantage of a piece of news I saw on line over the weekend to stop at a Dairy Queen on its opening day. Unfortunately, the owners weren’t at the location when I popped in. I would have loved to have said hello, as I’ve known them since I was a kid (even if I haven’t seen them in the past decade). I went with a small Mint Oreo Blizzard, and at first, I thought even that size was too much, the 40 degree temps not quite conducive enough for ice cream. But after stopping in at the library, I made short work of the rest of that treat.

Chose watching Michigan basketball over anything exercise-y, and the Wolverines pulled out an often frustrating 80-75 win. The biggest play was when the Purdue backup center, who beat his season scoring average 5 minutes into the game and then kept scoring almost at will, rolled his ankle. Might yet hit the exercise bike, it’s only 9:30.

Got a e-mail from Spark People today, offering $45 bucks of freebies for pre-ordering the new book, including 500 TOTAL sparkpoints (their emphasis), which is bizarre not only because of the all caps word, but also because I didn’t realize sparkpoints had any monetary value. Even more….well, I’m not sure ‘disturbing’ is the right word, but ‘annoying’ certainly applies, the language in the ad is just weird. It looks like the “The Spark Solution” book has a sub headline of “A complete two-week diet program to fast-track weight loss and total body health.”

The extended language in the e-mail gives more context, “But first I want to tell you about our new book! The Spark Solution is a two-week diet program to JUMP-START your weight loss and total body health. The idea behind it is simple: Why waste time experimenting with weight-loss tactics that don't work? With The Spark Solution, you'll spend the next two weeks SETTING YOURSELF UP to drop pounds and get healthy for the long haul.” (emphasis mine) In that statement, they don’t promise any quick fixes, just that you’ll learn what to do. But then, below, in bold, the message is delivered as, “With The Spark Solution, you could be just two weeks away from your healthiest, happiest self!” The thing that bugs me about this statement, as well as the sub-header, is that they seem to be promising quick fixes to the problem, using language in a way that this site really hasn’t done to date, as far as I’ve seen. Yeah, sure, there’s something to be said about marketing…but one of the things I love about Spark People is that it isn’t ever promoted as some sort of quick fix miracle, like so many of the fad diets are. And here they are, on the cover, and in the advertising of their new book, coming across as if it’s a “Two weeks to a new you!!!!!!!!!” fad. Sure, I know better. And people who buy it looking for that quick fix will be better off for it. But it’s annoying me anyway.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLPURNELL 3/7/2013 6:30PM

    I can understand the annoyance. They don't need to push it as a gimmick.

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KING_SLAYER 3/7/2013 4:41PM

    I also read that email with a bit of consternation. I'm all for people dropping the fluff and salesmanship and saying what they mean when they are trying to make a point. I don't have any room for truth stretching or even worse, falsehoods. Give me facts, tell me what this product (any product) can do for me without painting a flowery picture.
I would never make it in the advertising world! I'd come up with tag lines like "Volvo, it's boxy, but it's good!" *

* From a Michael Keaton movie about an ad exec that gets sent to a "funny farm".

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KMM1123 3/6/2013 11:19PM

    Michigan and Dairy Queen... oh the memories. Whenever I happen to visit the state it's mainly to visit with extended family in a little village in the north where the Dairy Queen acts as the main gathering spot. I spent three weeks up there with my family this summer and my fondest memories have to be swimming in the lake, picking blueberries with my grandmother and treating ourselves to Dairy Queen. I refuse to eat at their franchises down here in Florida... it's just not the same.

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EMMAEKAY 3/6/2013 10:55PM

    Actually, the "Two Week WOO" thing has been around forever. It's called the Spark Diet, and when you first make an account you go through all the learning steps and phases. If you hover over "Articles and Videos," you'll find the Spark Diet page.

It's basically just a how-to page on setting goals and controlling foodlust.

I have NO idea why the email sounds like it was written by the ghost of Billy Mays, though.


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I did not answer the 6 o clock bell this morning

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Contrary to any assertions made in this space last night, I had not, in fact, thought myself out of thoughts, and those thoughts (and Dr. Horrible, and the first episode of The Guild, both of which I'd somehow, incredibly, never managed to see before) kept me awake until approximately 2 AM. As a result, waking up at 6 AM and going to run around with the frisbee kids didn't happen. Too bad, because it was the last time they were slated to practice indoors. Might have to scout out their schedule, and see if I can catch one of their games some time.

Morning came at around 8 AM, not a bad time, but not near the time I need to keep starting next week. I was counting on the extra hour of sleep Sunday night due to returning to the central time zone, but I'll be robbed of it by the springing forward of the clock and the beginning of daylight savings time. Or is it the end? I can never remember. Either way, spring forward, and no extra sleep for me.

I did get an e-mail from the employers, and apparently I'll be getting a welcome package with a t-shirt in it. Might be the most exciting part (so far) of getting the job. I'll let you know if that's still true after I get my first paycheck. I suspect the t-shirt won't be able to compete.

The information contained within also included a link to enterprise car rental, so as to reserve vehicles at corporate rates. Corporate rates don't preclude the price of a rental nearly doubling due to taxes and fees, apparently. On the good side, I am now a member, amount of pride yet to be determined, of the Emerald Club, National/Enterprise's frequent rental club (or something like that). I'm most excited about that because of the name; as a May born kid, with the emerald as my birthstone, I'm down with that.

I did finally make it back to the gym. Got there at 4:30ish, left at 7:30, near three hours of pickleball, without too many breaks, really. Gave myself credit for 150 minutes, wondering as always how you're supposed to judge what portion of that was spent playing vs waiting for serves, etc. Figure it's a defensible number. After all, if you're on a tennis court for an hour, you're gonna take credit for an hour of tennis. This is a similar case. The wrist that's been an issue since playing volleyball two (or three?) weekends ago was really whining at me all day, but I ignored it, as I'm not going to be playing all that much pickleball soon. Beyond that, I also managed to smack myself in the ankle while trying to track a ball whacked at my feet, and I've got a nice little lump swelling up just above the ankle. That'll be annoying tomorrow.

Dinner was leftover turkey, with ranch dressing due to the fact of no gravy nor barbecue sauce in the place. Hey, it works, what can I say? And then the Red Wings beat the Avalanche, in what is a sad remnant of a once incredibly fierce rivalry. Doesn't matter, I still enjoy seeing Colorado losing whenever possible. Frickin' Nordilanche.

All in all, a good day. Tomorrow's weekly number won't be a step in the right direction, but I'm not sweating it. Since I actually forgot to record last week's number in SP (it was properly reported to the blc authorities), maybe it won't look like much of a change. But the lack of sweat means just that. This week is a freebie before the real challenge starts.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLPURNELL 3/7/2013 5:49PM

    LOL you have to post the new t-shirt! You are starting your own little t-shirt collection.

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KIKKI-G 3/6/2013 4:56PM

    Woo March birthdays! mines the 8th!

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MYOWNHERO 3/6/2013 2:29PM

    Dr. Horrible is a completely acceptable reason. Carry on.

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PRIZM96 3/6/2013 11:59AM

    Well, hell! the t-shirt makes it official!! :-)

I bet those frisbee kids are so going to miss you hanging with them!! So does your motel have a kickass fitness center in it? You can download a bunch of Def Leopard on an ipod or something so you don't feel so homesick!

hehehehe I'm so happy things are going so well for you! Well, at least until we actually see what this t-shirt looks like.......


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ATTACKFATCAT 3/6/2013 11:42AM

    May baby here as well! I feel like I'm part of a elite club now!

I didn't do my 6am workout this morning either. I managed to yesterday, but not today. I'm thinking it's going to have to be baby steps. One morning last week, two this week, and so on!

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KMM1123 3/6/2013 11:26AM

    I'm glad to see your paranoia about the job in your previous blog was unfounded. Sending you a t-shirt sounds pretty official to me - I'm sure they don't send them to just anyone willy-nilly. If only they knew about your love of ugly t-shirts. Maybe there's still time for you to negotiate a monthly t-shirt into your salary package...

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SIMONEKP 3/6/2013 9:14AM

    I don't know, the t-shirt sounds pretty tempting....

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ADARKARA 3/6/2013 8:11AM

    I second the may birthday high five! I'm the 19th!!

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SHRINKING_SARA 3/6/2013 1:03AM

    Woo May birthday high five!

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I'm never gonna lose 100 pounds

Monday, March 04, 2013

Wouldn't be much left of me if I did.

Exercise I don't wannas ruled Monday, too.

See if I manage to wake up at 6 AM tomorrow for the frisbee with the kiddies. The alarm will ring, a matter of whether I answer the bell. Right now, I really don't feel like it, and it hasn't even rang yet.


You need a special dictionary to translate that last line.

Am I paranoid for wondering what the hackensack is up with HR not getting in touch with me about the next phase of paperwork today? I've already paid for two weeks of flights (overpriced for short notice), and don't want to lay out for hotel and rental car until I talk to them. (the answer to the question is yes)

Can you tell the mind is unfocused? Would an illustration of a squirrel help?

Staring down a box of pepper jack cheez its. Taken my one serving out (only 25 crackers, as opposed to 27 for regular, and 29 for reduced fat, what a rip off!). Want more. Bottle of water next to it, half full. Want more of that, too. The pepperjack has created a pleasant buzz.

May or may not play in a trivia thing next weekend, immediately before starting work. I'd be a fill in, at a championship event. Like a rookie stepping up to the plate in the 9th inning of the last game of the world series. Or, make it the 8th, and call me Avasail Garcia.

I know a lot of useless facts, but I've never liked bar trivia. Not sure why. I answer a fair share whenever I do play.

Listening to the new Stratovarius album today. Used to chat with the keyboardist (Jens Johansson) on IRC back in the 90s. Can't recall if he ever dished on Yngwie Malsteen or not, Jens was on that guy's biggest albums.

Fave stratovarius song, Hunting High and Low, www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2l8K

A bit of Yngwie's neoclassical wankery, Far Beyond the Sun, www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlCnV

Haven't touched any more cheez-its yet. Also haven't done a lick of exercise. Don't really think I'm making it in the morning.

Bad time for exercise motivation to fail me, eh? I'm sure it's temporary, although, to tell truth, I've felt rather bored with spark people as a site this past week. Not sure if that's real, or just a "too much other stuff to think about right now" side effect. Ask me again in three weeks, y'know?

Think I've thought the thoughts right out of my head. Good night.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JUSTLIKEALICE 3/6/2013 10:33PM

    I love this blog.

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SIMONEKP 3/6/2013 9:15AM


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KING_SLAYER 3/5/2013 6:49PM

    You're gonna do what you're gonna do and that's all you're gonna do. Some days you'll get up nice and early and go play, other days you'll say "screw it" and go back to sleep. That's the prerogative of being a grown up!

You could lose 100 lbs, if you really wanted to... not that it would be healthy or that you would even survive, but you could do it, I know you can!!

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CLPURNELL 3/5/2013 6:00PM

    You will get over the blahs!

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PRIZM96 3/5/2013 4:31PM

    Blah, blah, blah! If you stayed away from Sparkpeople, who would send me the occasional teddy bear to throw against the wall in utter frustration?!?! Who, I say???

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MARTY728 3/5/2013 12:52PM


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1PEACEBUNNY 3/5/2013 7:45AM

    It gets that way with SP for alll of us I think....I took a sabatical but the good folks keep bringing me back and I remember that I had a goal when I started this and I would like to see it through eventually. So while you don't want to lose that 100, maybe I will keep trying to lose it for you and myself....I wouldn't miss it! Keep sharing your thoughts, I like to ponder them....hmmmm and its good for the spirit! emoticon emoticon

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GARDENCHRIS 3/5/2013 7:01AM

    you love us to much to stay away! emoticon

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Dazed and bemused

Sunday, March 03, 2013

The dazed part is just because I'm tired. Long day, though with no particular exertions. Watched a couple of games, played with the nephew, and chatted with the bro and sis-in-law, and her brother, who was visiting, a guy that has been in the consulting business since he graduated college back in 2004. Picked his brain a tiny bit, even asked what he does to stay thin while on the road. Sadly, he had no insight on that, as he's one of those creatures who actively try to gain weight, and fail, due to freakish metabolism. If only we all had that problem.

Got home intending to do some semblance of exercise, but it'll have to wait until tomorrow. The scale won't be kind this week, ate external food a couple times this weekend, with a third meal consisting of thanksgiving type food - we bought a turkey at some point, and finally got around to cooking it up, and when you have turkey, mashed potatoes and stuffing aren't far behind. Enjoyed the grubbing, now to try and reset to where I was middle of last week before the real trials begins.

One other thing got taken care of this weekend with a minimum of effort. My brother is one of those bargain hunter types, who will grab three shirts at once when he needs just one, if he's found a great deal on it. As you might imagine, that leaves him with excess stuff, which encroaches onto his wife's closet space. Rather than going shopping for the new gig, I, uh, liberated some of the excess, thus earning a modicum of gratitude from the sister-in-law, and some decent threads for that best of prices: free!

Oh, and for the record, the "bemused" part is for the lack of reaction to the "I saw a dead guy lying on the side of the highway" portion of my previous blog post. I mean, I get it, after all, how the heck are you supposed to respond to something like that? Someone else writes it, I'd have absolutely no clue what I was supposed to say about a situation like that. But that was something I didn't even think about, until I woke up in the middle of the night thinking about that guy. My apologies for any awkwardness you might have felt reading about that, whether yesterday or in this rehash.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLPURNELL 3/5/2013 3:33PM

    LOL It's Detroit and I am from Chicago.... Unfortunately have seen way too many of those for my liking. What I take away from it life is short make the most of each day. because one day it could be us under a sheet.

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1CRAZYDOG 3/4/2013 3:46PM

    OMG, I totally missed that in your previous blog. How awful! That happened to me only once (and me, being ever the diligent nurse) stopped to help till the parameds arrived Happened that in the care behind me was another nurse I'd worked with. We both stayed there till the parameds arrived. Don't know what ever happened, but honestly, still think about it daily!

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ATTACKFATCAT 3/4/2013 1:39PM

    I had to go back and read your posts from the weekend. I've seen some incredible photos (albeit depressing ones) of Detriot and the abandoned buildings in some of the areas. It's really sad how much that city is struggling and that is definitely something I've never witnessed before. Hopefully that's not a situation that commonly occurs there, though I'm sure the cops have seen their fair share of such.

So traveling workouts...I found a cool little site last week called nerdfitness.com with some free articles and they have a 20-minute Hotel Room workout (mostly ST, but you could throw in things like jumping jacks or buy a jump rope):

One of the success stories included a guy who travels 2-3 weeks out of the month for his job, and he relied heavily on these types of workouts.

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KIKKI-G 3/4/2013 11:31AM

    I totally fell off the wagon as far as "grubbings" as well this week....I hate the reset period when you switch gears back into healthy....
get back on again & keep at it. I will be too.

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GARDENCHRIS 3/4/2013 9:28AM

    nice thing on the shirts! have to go back and find the guy... I Think?!?

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ADARKARA 3/4/2013 9:10AM

    Don't worry, his metabolism will catch up with him one day. My dad was a STICK until his late 40s, died looking like he was going to have triplets.

*hugs* It's going to take a while to get that guy out of your head. I'm sorry you had to see that.

Grats on the free shirts!

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The running free

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Coheed and Cambria with partial credit for the blog title inspiration tonight

with the other part going to Iron Maiden

Not anything earthshaking, just that I finally went a full mile jogging, on Friday night. Took me 10:32, and I did a second mile (3W/6R/3W) afterwards in 14:08. Not sure what was different yesterday, except perhaps the fact I started jogging first thing upon getting to the gym, rather than after playing something else. An ankle whined about it during, and a knee wasn't happy when messing with the leg press machine afterwards. But that's a minor barrier breached.

Spending the weekend at my brother's house, chasing the nephew. That's the fun part. Getting up here was a bit of a different story, one detour leading to me somehow losing a highway. The sad part is that I've done it before, getting dumped onto Gratiot Avenue in Detroit rather than continuing up I-75. Still have no idea how I managed to do it. Ended up traveling through the city instead of backtracking, and that was depressing, what with the abandoned houses and downtrodden storefronts telling the city's sad tale. Eventually, I got to the I-94 junction...and chose the wrong direction, going east rather than west back towards I-75. That led to more detouring, as I eventually jumped on I 696 west, in an effort to get back to I-75. Unfortunately, I'd been listening to music rather than a station that gave traffic updates, because that meant I didn't know that particular highway was closed a couple of miles before my desired exit, due to a guy jumping off an overpass and getting hit by traffic. When they finally opened two lanes of the highway, as we passed by the phalanx of cops still in the two right lanes, there was a figure on the side of the road, with one naked leg, from about mid-thigh down, sticking out from beneath a sheet. Might be seeing that one in a dream tonight.

That aside, it's been a pretty good day. The nephew's worth many smiles, and hey, my brother and sister-in-law are pretty cool, too. Came out here early-ish, so I didn't make it to the gym, but definitely burned a couple of calories chasing after the kid. About to try and put together an exercise bike my brother bought, wish us the luck to not lose any screws!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEECHNUT13 3/6/2013 6:41PM

    Better than calling it "justice in murder" and being inspired to do just that... ;)

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MAJORDISASTA 3/5/2013 4:03PM

    Wow. Hope you are OK. I saw an amazing film about Detroit and was in awe. I live in Bristol, UK which has it's fair share of empty office blocks and abandoned buildings but it hardly compares. I once called the emergency services because some lunatic was hanging off a bridge over the motorway and I was driving with 2 young children in the car. They closed the whole route for hours creating tailbacks for miles and miles but they managed to talk him down. I was quite shaken up. Imagine if he had jumped under my car! So sad but also what a selfish way to go. xx

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PRIZM96 3/5/2013 3:22PM

    Good Lord! Now I think *I'm* going to be seeing that in a nightmare! How crazy!

Oh yeah! And great job on the jogging! :-)

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CLPURNELL 3/5/2013 3:04PM

    Great job on the jogging!!! That is pretty darn quick!!! Sorry about the traffic mishaps!

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GARDENCHRIS 3/4/2013 9:30AM

    glad you had a good time with family..... sorry about the guy for a whole bunch of reasons ... why and HIS family.

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RABBLERRABBIT 3/2/2013 10:37PM

    I think 10:32 is no longer considered jogging. You go with that running thing.. yay, you!

PS. I enjoyed driving around Ann Arbor/Detroit. Traffic jams very special for such a sparsely populated state. I kid. But no. Not really.... what is with the traffic in Ann Arbor???

PPS. Coheed and Cambria = nice!

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1CRAZYDOG 3/2/2013 9:55PM

    glad you had a good time!

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