Monday, December 07, 2009


Bunches of thoughts going through my head. With little, if any, coherent order. Was trying to find a theme for the post. But it is all randomness behind my eyes. Like puddles in today's rain.
  • Where did 2009 go? It is almost gone and it doesn't seem to have even started. 
  • Put up our Christmas tree yesterday, Usually try to do it on Mom's birthday. But she came over early and we pulled out the decorations.
  • Went to Ocean Spring's with Cindy, yesterday. After my workout. Had $80 worth of tapas and drinks. And bought another $80 worth hand-made jewelry from my cohort Tracy. Nice items. Nice food. Strong drinks. We had fun. The price tag seemed about right. 
  • Funky weather as of late. Low 30s one day. Snowed just north of us. Rain this morning. Then twenty degrees warmer as I came home. Supposed to be approaching 70 soon.
  • Things are much better with the kids. Much calmer around the house. And we're able to have fun together most weekends. Good to be past the chaos in the wake of Liam's unexpected surgery last year. I think we're all saner.
  • Trying to get the Beetle wrapped up. Finalizing the brakes now. Rear view mirror. Car computer. A few last touches. And we're done done done.
  • Need to get some projects under way on the house. Kitchen. Or bathroom. Or additions. Been too inactive lately. But we're leery of doing anything expensive in these troublesome times. Hopefully the economy gets some stability. We'll feel safer to start something new. I'm growing anxious in the meanwhile.
All in all, good days. I hope they continue to get better. We all do.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

In The Gym

Been having success in the gym as of late. Worked chest and triceps today. Two great records to report. For my fourh and final set on the bench machine, I pressed 240lbs, six times. And on my last set on the machine fly machine, I hit 190lbs, ten times. Both are weights I've never hit before. Never. They aren't world records. But for me, they're personal milestones that I never thought I could hit. Even before I blew my shoulder out, I maxed at 220lbs. And now I'm able to do more. It's very empowering to know that I'm pushing through my self-imposed limits. To reach new levels.

On a different note, I think perhaps I'm over-training some days. At some point I think, "Do I tough it out? Try to fight through it? Or take it easy?" One side says, "You're not a kid any more. You should take it slow." And then my other side says, "You took it easy for 30 years, dude. Wake up!"

And I'm gaining weight, again. Even though my waistline is shrinking. Probably muscle gain. I hope it is muscle. I was down to 201 for a couple of weeks. Now I'm up to 205. Maybe I need to switch off the heavy weights. Focus on the cardio. Or maybe those "spin" classes.

Anyway, I'm so happy to be back in the gym. And I'm feeling great. Not the slightest bit of hint of trouble from my shoulder. And my energy levels are through the roof. Just a shame that I had to get serious in my late thirties. Hopefully I can get the kids to see the error of my ways. And they can avoid my decades of sloth and stupidity. Only time will tell.

Thursday, December 03, 2009


A brief interlude from the complaints about myself to complain about the soiled, damaged hobo that America has become.

First, I'd like to dwell on the fact that the "stock market" it up, all the banking Executives on Wall Street are gleefully looking forward to record-breaking bonuses measured in the hundreds of billions of dollars, and the current White House administration is claiming: the worst is over, the recession is over, and happy days are here again.

In the meanwhile, US unemployment, no matter how you measure it, U3, U6 or SGS, has gone up about 100% in the last 20 months, and 60% in the past year alone.One in five Americans is unemployed or underemployed. One in eight families are on food stamps. Over one hundred thousand households are filing for bankruptcy every month. And one in eight families can not afford to pay their mortgage this month.

And yet, our leaders, our President, and everyone in the financial system is telling us the recession is over? And they're able to say it with a straight face?

Second, I'd like to elaborate on the current administration's false notion that we can achieve and maintain some kind of "recovery." Recover to a society that spends 110% of its annual income? Recover to a society that spends $600/ft on a flimsy McHouse that's made as cheaply and quickly as possible? Recover to a system where a painter making $30,000 per year can buy a half million dollar house, fill it with 60" plasma screens, and park three Escalades out front that he uses to buy cheeseburgers, glazed donuts, and 90oz Super Sized jugs of Coke for each meal?

For the record, we've depleted all of our cheap, clean, easy-to-reach natural resources. We've all-but-destroyed our manufacturing base. Our national infrastructure is on life support. We continue to reward Big Business for out-sourcing our Knowledge Based Businesses. We continue to encourage Big Business to avoid paying taxes that our local and federal governments desperately need just to stay afloat.

So please, explain to me in simple, easy-to-follow terms, what our recovered society is going to look like, and how can we possible get there, from here? Get sock puppets if you have them, because I don't see how anything short of the Second Coming is going to do anything other keep our heads above the dark waters.

Third, I'm curious to know why our national media outlets continue to distract us from the real issues. Tiger Woods wrecking his Cadillac doesn't affect the national debt that has a rocket on its ass and is diving straight up into the stratosphere where only our children will be able to find it. Two reality TV shysters sneaking into a White House dinner (where they could have BOUGHT a ticket) does nothing to bring our tired troops home or reconcile the two TRILLION dollars we've airlifted over to Iraq in order to find some sneaky WMD that have elluded us since 2004. And why are do we blindly accept the idea that a new "surge" of 30,000 troops (at a cost of close to $1M/year per person, or $30,000,000,000/year for the "surge,") in A'Stan will work when every report says that we should empower the local tribes, enlist Afghans eager to fight the bad guys, don't force them to support a corrupt central government or bow to foreign forces - and keep picking off Al Qaeda with Special Operations troops and drones.

We're all damaged. Mentally. Physically. Spiritually. Our nation teeters on the edge of the abyss. But our leaders tell us the recession is over. Our President says we trust him, we can all get better cars, better houses, free health care, and a free college education. And our corporate-controlled media companies tell us to smile and ignore the men behind the curtain.

Wake up. Wake up! WAKE UP!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Yargh, Day Two!

Still a big bunch of meh behind my eyes. YARGH! Day two. I don't know what the hell happened to my motivation. Or my mental energy levels. But I'm dragging ass horribly. Trying to psyche myself up. Find some kind of second gear and go from there.

Got this plan to bang out a couple of lingering issues. Going to try and make some progress on them each day until they're complete: One, consolidate a couple of old 401K accounts into my current provider. Dos, knock out an old car payment and consolidate my bills into one new car note for the Lightning Bug. Trois, refinance the house at a lower, fixed rate while the lower fixed rates are still good. If I can bang all three of those out, it will put a nice dent on my monthly bills and be a large burden off my mind.

Fortunately, I'm still motivated enough to get into the gym. Hit it hard, tonight. Back and biceps. Then a 30 min run that cut off 400 calories. Ended up sweating like a cold beer in August. Completely soaking my shirt. And helping my mood in the process.

Going to weigh in on Friday. Praying I'm closer to 200 than 205. Started around 217! And have gone as low as 201. Before Thanksgiving assaulted my waistline.

I need to bring the thunder. But there's no spark in sight. Have to find my inspiration, again. Maybe if I invoke her with an ancient prayer:
Sing to me of the man, Muse, the man of twists and turns driven time and again off course, once he had plundered the hallowed heights of Troy. The man of constant sorrow!
Who else in the 21st century harkens back to Homer? I'm such a loser. Constant sorrow, indeed.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Ho Hum

My motivation is currently Missing In Action. Nothing during the day. Nothing at night. Fortunately I'm still inclined to go to the gym. But otherwise all that has my attention are movies and books. Not writing, and not working on side projects that need my attention. It is all just: Ho hum. Quite an unusual mental low for me.

Had a massage today. That seemed to help. But not much. Have to find some inspiration. Get back on track.Find my mojo again.It is out there. Somewhere.