Wednesday, June 30, 2010
I work with a guy, I can’t say like or hate him, I nothing him. I don’t think he is evil, just a loud, ogre of a man. At the same time there appears to be nothing overtly evil about him. He just isn’t the type of person that I would hang out with on a social basis. But I see a bit of myself in him.
When we started working together about 4 years ago, I was envious. He was not an athletic looking person, but he was around my height and “overweight”. But he carried it so well. He had large looking arms, with a large midsection, but it wasn’t “fat”, it was just large. I looked at him and thought “Man, if I could look like that! I would be happy, that would be sweet!”
Flash forward to today. We have swapped bodies. I don’t think I look as good as he once did, but he has defiantly fallen face first into a pile of lazy. He is just like I was, fat and lazy. His once large midsection has progressed to morbid obesity. I feel a bit of sorrow looking at him nowadays. He is now where I was, where I stood for 30 years. At the edge of hell with too much fat to carry myself back from the edge.
Around two months ago he joined a gym. Judging by his current body state I would say that he joined, but no longer attends. I feel like I should say something. Like I should go up to him and offer some words, support, time, whatever to help bring him back from the edge of hell, I just haven’t done it yet. I’ve thought about it, but we don’t really have that sort of relationship, it would be…awkward….
Screw it, I’m gonna talk to him …
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
..."What would you say if I bet you $500 that we could put this sheet of newspaper flat on the floor, I put my toes on one end and you put your toes on another, you swing as hard as you want, and you can never hit me. In fact, you couldn’t even touch me, if you do the money’s yours.
Bob opened the paper to its full size and displayed it for me. OK it’s a news paper, its no more than what, 24 inches? Bob said “There it is jack. Put it on the floor, you stand at one end I stand at the other, take your best shot. If you hit me, you get $500.” Bob reached into his pocket and pulled out his wallet, he threw some hundreds and twenties onto the table.
I said “Bob, hey, man I could never hit you.” And Bob laughed and said “Oh I know bro, because you love me. But put love aside for a second. You cant touch me no matter how hard you try.” … I was getting nervous now I said Bob are you joking or is this for real? Because I don’t know anymore.” Bob got a steely look in his eyes and said “Its for real, and to make it even more real, why don’t you put down $500 to?” I said “I don’t gamble Bob, and it feels like I’m gonna lose somehow.” Bob smiled and picked up his money and said “Most of the time feeling like you’re gonna lose is the same thing as losing. Let me show you.”
Bob lit another lucky strike, picked up the sheet of newspaper and said “Follow Me.” I got up, as all the others around us did and we followed bob through the bar. Bob took the sheet of newspaper back in the direction of the office and Bob called out to the manager who was tending bar “Gonna use your office for a second.” He laughed and with a sweeping gesture of his hand said “Be my guest!”
Bob put the newspaper on the ground on the doorway of the office and said “Stephen, go stand on your end.” I went into the office and put my toes on the edge of the newspaper. Then Bob closed the office door leaving his half of the newspaper outside the office. The heavy oak door closed with a clang and Bob yelled “OK Bro, swing away!” The crowd erupted in laughter. I opened the door and was the butt of a joke. Bob was laughing and said “You see, you were right. You would’ve lost. Sometimes thinking you’re gonna lose is the same thing as losing.”
We sat back down at the table and had boilermakers, with Irish Whiskey and raw eggs. I asked Bob if it was sanitary, he said “Don’t worry about it, the Irish cooks it.” then Bob handed back the newspaper and said “I always want you to remember the newspaper and the door. It’s a lesson for ya.” And I said “In want, not taking barroom bets?”
Bob said “No, In the different between honesty and truth. Most people live their lives and they think it’s the same thing. But they’re not. People can use honesty to tell lies. Like me saying there’s no way you can hit me standing toe to toe on a newspaper. But honesty never tells the whole story, it only tells part of the story. The part you want to be heard. The port where you’re right. But the truth is closing the wooden door. It not only changes the way you see the situation you are in, but it changes the way you see the world from that point on. You can use honesty as a blugeon bro to hit people over the head but you can never go back from truth. I’ll bet you from now on, you will never comletely believe your eyes. And ill bet ya from now on youll always guess theres a missing piece. "
I drank a bit of my boilermaker and smiled “Thanks. I’ll remember that.”
Bob smiled back and said “I Know you will bro, I know you will.”
The above was taken from the masterful podcast “The Tobolowsky Files” Brought to us by Stephen Tobolowsky. Stephen is a veteran actor who uses his immense talents and experiences to bring us a brief glimpse into his life. Do yourself a favor and give his podcast a listen.
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
So, what is it that sends you to hell, the hell of higher numbers on the scale?
There are many things I can point to, but for today I will focus on one item.
For me all it takes, actually all it took, was one incident. It was October of last year. I was sick, and the only thing that stem the tide of awfulness that was washing over my body was eating. Not real eating, the kid you do for nourishment, but double-fisted, mindless devouring of anything and everything within sight. Since recovering from that illness I have not been right. I have had brief spells of eating right, I even had a stretch of 11 days of eating right and tracking everything, but for whatever reason that will power that came to me so easily last summer was completely annihilated by that one onslaught. That all began with a simple act “I feel terrible, maybe if I get some fast food on the way home? After all I’ve been good, I deserve it. They say it’s OK to cheat once in a while.”
Well that isn’t the case with me, cheating is death. The only reason I have not exploded in a cloud of self destruction and self pity is my time at the gym, I’m there for more than five hours a week endlessly combating the forces of evil and fat.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
I like dramatic titles that grab your attention. To be more accurate I should have title this "Some Lawyers Cause Events Which, In Extreme Cases, May Cause An Early End to Life for Some Less Fortunate People."
I work at a school, where one of my perks is free lunches. One day I was late, I usually go between lunches, but this time I showed up after last lunch. It was hot ham and cheese day. The lunch lady just started throwing sandwiches (wrapped in foil) in a bag. After about a dozen she asked if that was enough. I laughed and said sure. No, I did not plan on eating a dozen sandwiches for lunch, but I thought they would make a fair snack for the kids at home. I did however wonder to myself, so I just asked her:
"Why did you give me so many sandwiches?"
"Its either that or we throw them out."
"Seriously? Cant you give them to a soup kitchen or a shelter?"
"... why not?"
"Because if someone gets sick we would get sued so hard the school would shut down."
Our conversation was more detailed, but that was the jist of it. The school administration will NOT allow the donation of un-purchased lunches to any organization. Period. The threat of a lawsuit has tied our hands. My school, which is a CATHOLIC school, is not allowed to help people. All because an opportunistic vagrant might get a tummy ache, EVERYONE has to suffer.
Why cant lawyers just leave people alone who are trying to do good!
Wednesday, June 09, 2010
I never take time off from work. Mainly because I never know when I might need time off for family. Well my vacation time refreshes on July 1st, meaning all time I DID NOT take off is trashed and they give me 10 fresh days to spend anyway I want.
I looked at my most recent paystub, of the 10 days I started the year with, I have 10 left over.
Told you I never take time off.
So, next week is vacation week. I will sleep in until about 7, go to the gym for two hours, go home and clean 3 rooms, five if you count the garage and attic. Actually, as bad as those two places are, i think i would be better off just moving
Wish me luck!
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