Tuesday, November 30, 2010

see that photo up there?

For a while I have thought that there was too much wasted space above the dinner. The books and all are nice, but it detracted from the subjects. I dropped it into MSPaint, and cropped it down to the above image.
Well.....for me, that just changed it ALL around. Why? No worries, I'll explain.
The Patriarch is my Mom's Dad, who we called Pop-pop, or just Pop. In my mind's eye he looked like Picasso. The kids above are (l to r) my cousin Sandy (my sr. by 3 months), my sister, Weeb...umm..errr...Lynette (younger than me in terms of the calendar, but much wiser), me (with my fly-away collars), and my cousin Shannon (Sandy's sister, younger than me by 3 years, i think...).
so what? well, it has been two days since i started this post. so? well, when the original picture was there, I paid more attention to the books and such, and less to the people.
Now, however, my attention is drawn to the word "accountability", Pop's facial expression, and my cousin Sandy's face and hand. The whole thing looks to me like Pop is trying to hold her accountable for something, and she is trying to deny culpability. well, if you knew the things that are going on in her life right now, you would understand that this is really funny, and if Pop were here, he WOULD be trying to hold her accountable, and she would be trying to deny culpability. Her sister, Shannon, down in the corner there, seems to be saying to the camera...are you flippin' KIDDING ME????? (which i think she says more often than not as things relate to Sandy. I know I do....)

so i give you this example to point out that often when we think we have seen all that there is to be seen, a simple change in perspective may open up that you hadn't noticed before. apply this to life, work, love, family, running, training plans, all that stuff........

Friday, November 26, 2010

Fun photo Friday

this actually happened on Thursday (yesterday), but I think that the photo was fun enough to wait for today to post it. It is, i think, my new favourite photo.
Hi, MOM!
We had been planning to run in a local turkey trot to support Zack's Place. We had participated in a World Record breaking event 2 years ago (longest continuous moving line of wheelchairs), and we really think that they do great work for our area.
Well, race day started off COLD. It was 18 when i woke up at 6. by the time we got out the door at 830 ish, it was only 22. Our initial plan was for Bryce and I to start running together, me pushing an empty stroller. After he got tired, he would hop in, we'd run until the last 100 meters, then he'd hop out and cross the line with me. We'd practiced our fists-pumping-in-the-air poses for the finish, and we were psyched!
yes, i know the bib is off center.
While we were hanging out in the gym before the race, B kept saying that he was cold. His eyes looked like death, and he was fairly quiet, which is not the norm for this 4 year old. Tracey suggested a new plan for the race: B and I would start together, then meet her a little way down the road. She'd take B and get in the truck to stay warm. They'd seek out a spot near the finish (ptp race, not a complete loop) and wait for me. When I got to them, B would jump back on the course, and we'd finish together. (I swear she's a genius!) So that's what we did. B and I hung back with the walkers so that we could be sure to be seen by T. That's when she snapped the picture above. 
As for the race itself, it was pretty good! The start was a complete MESS, and we were waiting around in sub-freezing temps for it to start. We started 15 minutes late, which translates into 25 minutes of standing there......
Since i started back with the walkers, i had to weave in and out of traffic for about a quarter mile after i dropped off B with T. no worries, it was kinda fun trying to spot open spaces up ahead. Once the road opened up, i just trotted along. I hadn't thought of this as a race, and wasn't planning on a PR. It was fun to look around and see other hats and get-ups. Next year I'd consider running it in a turkey costume. why not?
Here are the winners coming past T and B while they waited for Dad:
The first female was cruising! Me? Not so much. This was the first time that I had run on the road without music. I have no idea how people do this on a regular basis. The footfalls of other runners, their harsh breathing....all distracted me from my running. Good thing I am not headed for elite status anytime soon.
I'll leave you with some final pictures. We had a great time, B is still a bit under the weather, but the run definitely helped me get through the rest of Thanksgiving!
headed for the final stretch!
enjoying the endorphins!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Man the bilge pumps!

And BAM! just like that, the winter Holidays are upon us. Soon we'll be headed over the river and through the woods, sitting down at tables full of wonderful food, surrounded by friends and family who we may not have seen since last year's Holiday gatherings. Joy of Joys, the World comes together and like Bob Marley said, "Everything's gonna be alright."
Or will it?
If you don't want to read about a Derrick Downer, then leave this post now and run. Fast. Get in a good HIIT workout, then come back later in the week. Maybe i'll have posted something interesting by then.
This is the time of year when i sink into a dark place and struggle to come out. I don't like it there, I don't want to be there, but....there it is, and here I go. What is difficult for me to grasp is the WHY. I have a great family. we have a nice house. we have food, jobs, pets. wait. mebbe it's the pets. nah, just kidding. they're cool.
this year i have managed to stay 'afloat' longer than ususal. in the past, i have started sinking in the middle of october. this year, the leaks started just last week. so...WIN, i guess.
Here are some things that I have decided to try to incorporate this year in an effort to plug the leak, or better yet, find myself a better boat...
1) I will focus more on the children and less on the adult BS.
2) I will allow myself to make time for myself.
3) I will run more and enjoy it more (see #2).
4) I will reconnect with family members who i have lost touch with.
5) I will take up a new hobby that won't take me away from home.
I think 5 is a good start. Reminder, these are NOT resolutions, but rather changes in attitude, which should bring on changes in latitude, if only metaphorically.
Thank you for enduring this post. Tomorrow we will be back to our regularly scheduled shenanigans.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Great White North

when i was in high school, Bob and Doug McKenzie were the biggest thing to hit our area since the Redcoats decided to tax us without allowing us to represent ourselves. (Hello? Taxation without Representation? Beuller? Anyone?)
I dunno how many times i was kicked out of the library (just kidding, Mom!) (no, i'm not) for singing their crazy song (no beer bottles involved, Mom) (at least not in the library). At anyrate, I've been to Canada a few times, and have yet to run into either Bob or Doug.
Although i may have 'met' their cousin.
Enter Neil. aka Barefoot Neil Zee. He and i have so much in common that we have called each other "Brothahs from an International Mothah" (no disrespect intended, no animals were harmed in the typing of this post).
ANYWAY, all that family stuff aside, last week I had the idea of  posting some alternate uses for your Garmin. Remember? It got cast aside in favor of some pictures of me and Steve with our CHIMO staches. (thanks, Rachael, for that new vocabulary word. Like how i used it in a sentence already? Boo-ya!)  Well....imagine my surprise when I looked at Neil's blog this morning. Yep. Pretty UNBELIEVABLE!!! I mean, I HAVE THAT SAME HAT!! (not really). I won't spoil the whole surprise. Just go to his site and check out an alternate use for your Garmin. Mine is totally lame compared to his.
Take off, to the Great White North.
Take off, it's the Beauty way to go.
Take off.......


Friday, November 19, 2010

it is Friday again...

and you know what that means, boys and girls...oh wait. i mean LADIES AND GENTLEMEN. NOT boys and girls.
so i have a MO going. about a week or so ago, Rachael over at http://www.snarktart.com/ said on Twitter that I looked like a p e d o phi le because of it. rats, i can't find the tweet. anyway, i told T about it, and she cracked up and then AGREEEEED with her. then she told one of her friends, and SHE agreed, too. now her kids can't come to the house. just kidding abou that part. but her friend DOES agree...
what? hmmmmmm....not really showing the MO love.
then today i read Steve's blog where he shaved off his beard. here is one of the pictures and the caption (i kid you not. go check it out for realz. I'll wait......):
"Then I trimmed it down to "pedophile" length:"
 Whaaaaat? HEY!!! that looks like MINE!!!! this is SO not fair. Now, just because i took this picture (below) while i was sitting in my truck while it was parked behind a hotel yesterday, DON'T JUDGE ME. See??? there are WINDOWS in the truck. It isn't some broken down chevy van parked down by the river....and oh, never mind the rain coat hanging off the back of my seat.....move along now.....

like my darth vader tie? i knew you would.....
 so there, i hope you had a good laugh at me. BUT to let you know that I am not really nuts, here is another picture, or at least a screen shot, of some work that Teri (my Garmin) did for me this late summer. I wore her OUT! while i mowed the lawn:
no, actually you won't see it here. at least not NOW. why????


I paid my bill and everything. I swear. what the heck? anyway, tune in again some other time, after i feed blogger some chocolate, and i'll have some suggestions for alternate uses for your garmin. Yes, you can thank me now, if you'd like.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Bio-feedback trial

who says HRM's are just for sports? not me! for those of you following along, today was the day that I had to give a presentation for the Vermont Council on Quality's Healthcare Reform Summit. My topic was EMR, or Electronic Medical Record. Blah blah blah, bits, bytes, ones, zeros, and a whole buncha security and privacy built in. In short, it is the wave of the future, and the company that I work for is waaaaaay ahead on this one. whew.
but that isn't the real reason for this post. blah blah healthcare. what you all came to my blog for today was to see if i actually survived. well, yes, i did. someday i might go into detail about why i was so on edge about the whole thing. suffice to say it had nothing to do with my speech, or her speech.
i wore my chest strap for my garmin, but didn't wear the wristband part. I just carried it and then placed it on the table near me. so? i dunno why i told you all that. really doesn't matter.
so she (let's just call her "steph" for now, ok?) spoke two people before me. I had arrived at the venue VERY early, because i really didn't know what the heck i was doing, and ended up killing some time going for a walk and then warming up in a Barnes and Noble. yay, books! i went back to the hotel around 10 since the agenda said that there was a break scheduled at 1015, and steph was to start at 1030. they of course were running behind, so i sat in a chair in the hall and waited. Here i am, waiting....look closely at the tie.....yep, that's Darth.
As I sat, i noticed movement to my right. what could it be? mouse? caterer asking me to sample some truffles? nope. it was steph, headed to the powder room. i looked her way but tried not to look like i was sizing her up, because i wasn't. she half-assed waved at me and said, "hi, Gene." I said, "hey, steph, how are you?" she said that she was good, and then disappeared. when she came out, she didn't even glance in my direction. win.
when the break finally happened, i took a spot in the back row and waited for her to speak. her presentation was average, nothing really to write home about, but no complaints, either. she did well crunching all of her info into the compressed time slot. she made good eye contact with almost everyone in the room, but never really looked in my specific corner of the room. win.
the next presenter(s) were ones that i really wanted to hear. their topic was about creating the 'gold standard' with an employee wellness program. we have one at our facility, but honestly it is on life support and in need of some intervention. their show was good, but i didn't really learn much. oh well. after they were done, steph and her 2 coworkers booked it out of there as if their car was being towed. just as well.
i introduced myself to the Dr. who was following me. nice guy, young, fit-looking. he noticed Teri. i said that it was my Garmin, and that i was wearing an HRM as part of a biofeedback experiment that i was doing. he loved the idea. i didn't explain to him WHY i was doing it. he asked what my rate was at the time, and i said that it was 86. He said, "that's pretty good for someone about to give a speech to a room full of strangers."
so here is the data.....what do you think? i think that i might wear it to sleep some night(s) to get a better sense of my perception of sleep time versus what my body actually does. i mean, otherwise, Teri just sits there on my cedar chest (not my hairy chest, my cedar chest. but i digress. often. here are the numbers:
not nearly as dramatic as i thought that it would be. this was a fun experiment!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

DM Intervals

Yesterday i wanted to run. badly. the weather wasn't cooperating, so of course it was the dreadmill. i am learning to embrace, to LOVE the dreadmill. to OWN it, to rock it, to be ONE with the Dreadmill.... sure.

I wanted to do intervals. I have an interval program from AudioFuel, specifically this one. I have done it on pavement, but never on my new BFF, the treadmill. Not to be discouraged, I hopped on the bad boy and cranked up the volume.
Aside: Do people try to talk to you when you are wearing headphones? WHY???
I must say that I was not disappointed. Not long into the workout i was sweating almost as much as a long-tailed cat at a rocking chair convention!
People around me were giving me strange looks. Might have been because I would be cruising along at 150bpm and then suddenly (to them, but to me I had a count down!) shoot up to 170 or 180bpm. Thumpa-thumpa-thumpa~ It might have had something to do with the discharge of CH4 coming from my a.. somewhere right behind me. I dunno.
Aside: WTF, BLOGGER??? I had a paragraph, then a picture, and then a plea for advice....AND YOU LOST MY WORK~~! Just another item to add to the growing list of reasons why i feel that i should either a)move to wordpress or b) get my own domain. How hard could either one be, right? Thing is, my top two domain name choices have been taken. Huh? really? yep.....

Ok, so when i got on the TM, I wore Teri. Remember Teri? We've run around a bit together over the past year or so. When I took her out of my gym bag (don't judge me!) she copped an attitude right away, "Ummm...this doesn't seem right to me. What are we doing here?" "What are you talking about?", I asked. She sat there silently, her little bar desperately trying to fill, until finally she just said, "Are you indoors?" I clicked on the "yes" option and wedged her red little body between the console and a washcloth so she wouldn't rattle and bother the other people present. She's been good to me so far, so i guess i can't complain.
Shhh....she has NO IDEA what is in store for next year. I wanted to know how my HR did during the sprints and recovery periods. See below, and you'll know, too:
Aside: Save now. Click it. Click it!
See that? My heart rate just kept going up and up. Never really gave myself time to fully 'recover' in between efforts. I ask you: Is that bad? Should I be getting closer to 130 (or lower??) before I ramp the speed back up? Seriously. I need some advice. I felt really good during the run, and at no time did i feel like i couldn't go on. I think I had the machine up to 8mph for the last sprint, which is where you see my HR maxed out.

In other news, Thursday (today?) is the big day. I have to give that presentation that I mentioned a few posts back. Yep. So i am certain that I'll have some stuff to write on Friday......
Thanks for stopping by. If you live where there is usually snow but there ISN'T snow yet, and you are jonesing for some....check out Neil's recent blog posts. Good humor, great photos (not ALL of snow).

Saturday, November 13, 2010

"Let's start..the Family Fooooood!"

ahh....remember the original Family Feud? With Richard Dawson? THAT show had it going on. How many hosts has it been through since then? Too many to count, that's for sure. Who wants to get a kiss from "Mr. Peterson", anyway?
Anyway, this post is about family FOOD, not feud. This week my wife decided to create a menu for the week to help streamline things at dinner time. One thing we have figured out that we don't like is the daily question, "what do you want for dinner?" Last night, it was home made pizza! Welcome to our kitchen:
Fresh home from Zumba, Tracey measures out the ingredients for the dough. I can't bake. You shoulda seen her measure out the flour. taptaptap, scrapescrapescrape. i would be like, scoop...hmmm...that's close enough. (notice i am not the one making the dough....)
Next it has to be needed. it is nice to be needed. errr..umm...KNeaded. that, too.this is actually the second dough. the first one is rising in the bowl on the stove. one for the kids, one for us.
Once the dough was set, it needed to sit for a while, so T jumped in the shower while Bryce, Zach and I watched some AFV. That's right, America's Funniest home Videos. Love watching that show with the boys. Makes me realize how 'normal' our kids are...

That's Zach in the background. He was wondering why Mom uses a 'target' to roll out the dough. Note the hair-net. I think that OSHA would approve. And yes, those are jammies. No, it isn't late at night, but why not get into comfortable clothes whenever you can, right? Right.
 here we are, adding toppings to the second pie. that little pile of read things are my sundried tomatoes and roasted red peppers. YUM! All this writing and posting  is making me hungry for more. Is 930 in the morning too early for left over home made pizza? I think not. I'll be right back...
Bryce couldn't wait to get his hands on his slice(s). Yummy, to be sure.

see my little slice of heaven over there on the right? YUM! it was fun to make, it was fun to watch the kids interact during the process, and, of course, it was fun to EAT!!!! Loving the family food time.....now where's Richard for that smooch??

Friday, November 12, 2010

Funny Friday (LONG VERSION)

Alright. we ALLL know that i am madly in Love with my wife, who was my first TRUE love, and then i suffered brain trauma broke up with her while in Japan, then we got back together, yada-yada. No? You must be new here. Ok. Go here to catch up with the group.....
You back? Good. WEEEELLLLLL...this post has NOTHING to do with that story. I just like to tell it. wuhahahaaaaa.
This post has to do with a different story. Please bear with me, as I think that you will find it interesting AND funny (at my expense).
About a month or so ago my hospital was invited to give a presentation at a conference being put on by the Vermont Council for Quality (yea, i dunno what the hell that means, either). They wanted us to talk about our electronic medical record system. good. fine. we ROCK at that, so, why not. My predecessor, Pam, readily accepted the invitaion and said that we could use one of her 'canned' presentations since she has given this talk several times over the past few years. Sweet. All I had to do was to come up with about 5 slides, sit next to her on the stage, talk for about 5-6 minutes, and sit down. Basically I would act as "eye candy". (Which sounds a lot like I CAN....just sayin').
We received an email that listed the agenda for the day and it included a listing of the presentations and presenters. This is where the story gets GOOD. And by good, I mean Soap Opera Good.
I quickly scanned the peeps, wondering if there would be anyone I knew from nursing school or such, because, hey, Vermont ain't that big a place, ya know? As my eyes went down the page, they got HUGE, I mean BUGSY huge when I saw a familiar name. I immediately picked up the phone and called my wife. The conversation went something like this:

T: Hello.
Me: ohmygodyourememberthatconferencethatitoldyouaboutthatihavetogivealittlespeechatinNovember?yeawellguesswhoelseisgoingtobethere?okyou'llneverguesssoi'lltellyoubecauseiknowyouarebusy. Steph.
T: who? what? is this prank call? we don't want any encyclopedias.
Me: nononoit'sme! youheardright. STEPH is going to be at the conference. not just BE there, but also PRESENTING. yea. right before me, in the same room as me.
T: what day? i SO want to go to this thing.......

(a bit of back story here: my first marriage ended disasterously. mostly because i wasn't the best person that i could be at the time, and the person who was hurt the most was Steph. i do feel bad about the person i was back then (we divorced in 2003. i haven't seen or heard from her since. no children are involved, but i DO suspect that she killed my cat.), and i suspect that Steph still harbours bad feelings toward me. I would. (i do, actually...)

So then i told Pam, my co presenter. I believe that her email response was, "GET.OUT! Are you kidding me???" Many emails have gone back and forth about this. Pam found the situation to be 'interesting' but was certain that 'everything will be just fine'. Well, it was. I have thought about it quite a bit, and have lost a little bit of sleep about it, but have steeled myself enough so that earlier this week, with just 10 days to go before the event, I was ready to present.
Then an email came from Pam with this subject: "PLEASE DONT FAINT"
The body was this:
Hi Gene

Don’t faint when you read this -----I cannot be at this conference – I am flying home from a meeting in SLC that day – I had made a mistake and thought the conf was on Friday – not Thursday….yikes. I will prepare slides of the stuff I was going to cover – are you OK with doing the whole VA enchilada? I will be in tomorrow – can we get together then?

Thanks, Pam

"thanks???" THANKS??? thanks is what you say when you ask someone to pass the Old Bay and they do. I would have preferred to have her write, "sorry to have totally effed with your head, but i am sure you'll be ok" instead of 'thanks'.
So i replied with, "**thud**", waited a good dramatical few seconds, then re-replied with this:
Disregard the last email. After some smelling salts, I am feeling MUCH better now.
Yes, I will be here tomorrow. Now, if I could just figure out what that halo is on the periphery of my field of vision, I’d be all set…
(the halo is sometimes a symptom of head injury, stroke, seizure, etc.)
Her reply? Oh, so comforting....
It’s a good thing you share an office with Chris – otherwise no one would have known that you fainted…and we would not have found your body until I showed up to talk to you in the am.  I am really sorry – I am usually pretty good about remembering dates with my travel etc…but I had in my mind (feeble as it is) that the conference was on a Friday and that I was all set (who needs to know the date?)….
Have you developed a twitch?
nice. so i shared this conversation with Chris, who is the stereo-typical systems analyst who i share an office with. she has been working with computers since..well..ALMOST since they still used vacuum tubes.
My rebuttal? yep...
Yes, actually, and I’m afraid that my ex will think that I am winking at her. Maybe some depakote will do the trick?
No worries…..
I will see you in the morning. Please disregard my 1000 yard stare. And please, no sudden movements.
(depakote is often prescribed to combat seizure activity, as well as for major depressive disorders.)
having a similar sick sense of humor, she replied:
Wear sunglasses and she will never see the twitch (unless it becomes a full body tremor)…but if that happens you will undoubtedly begin to stutter also. 

I asked if I could wear a suit for the day, and she said that I could. I sent her this picture, asking if this type of suit would be appropriate:
We shall see.
But the FUNNIEST part of all of this, which I will NEVER KNOW ABOUT, is....think about it....I got the agenda, which means SHE got the agenda. What do you think her reaction was when she saw MY NAME on the list???? And my name isn't common, like a Bob Smith might be. So....there is no mistaking that it will be me following her to the podium this coming Thursday. Oh, to have been a fly on the wall in her office that day. And the subsequent weeks. Who knows. Perhaps she just laughed it off and went on with her day. I hope so, but imagining differently has been much more fun.
Thank you for enduring this lengthy post. I has been cathartic for me to get this out there. Have a great Friday~

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Gene's Test Kitchen

As i am certain that most of you know, I have been spending quite a bit of time on Twitter these days. Not at night, just during the day. And not on weekends, just during the week. What does that mean? Yes, I tweet while working. While this might not be the BEST use of my time, I can assure you there are some work things involved. How can that be? Simple.....I am one of the most active (pun intended) people on our Wellness Committee, and have taken on a project (ok, not just taken on. I came up with the flippin' idea) of putting together a cookbook of healthy foods. Well.....a quick walk through the halls should have clued me in that I wouldn't be getting very many healthy ideas, if you know what I mean. So we opened it up to just be a cookbook, 'sponsored' by the Wellness Committee.
Being the nice guy that i am, i tweeted that i was looking for some good recipes for the cookbook. why not share some tweetie, blogger love, right? Cathy from Planet Veggie and Jog-Blog sent me a recipe for some great peanut-butter bars which i reviewed here. Those will be included for sure. She also sent me a recipe for some great soup, which I made but didn't review. Suffice to say, it was GREAT. Even our 13 year old liked it. WIN~
Then one day I got caught up in a conversation between @MMNorthDallas and (i think...) @hotlegsrunner about a Pita Pizza. (note to people who don't tweet: start tweeting. ok, more serious note: the "@" is how twitter identifies it's users. you could type ClifBar in a sentence to talk about a bar, but if you type @ClifBar, you are talking about the company, or the user. clear as mud? moving on now...) Since i am interested in pizza, and different kinds of pizza, i jumped in and asked for the recipe. Jason was gracious enough to send it to me, and I was very excited to try it out. TWO WEEKS LATER, i did.
Jason has a tab on his web sited called "Athlete's Plate". Head over there for the recipe (if you have trouble, either tweet me (@boutdrz) or email me and I will get it to you) and give it a try. Very basic, very tasty. I altered it a bit, but it was pretty much the same. I have no way of grilling chicken (HORROR!), so that wasn't on it. I don't like the smell of broccoli in the oven, so that was off. Instead of using a bunch of the single ingredients, I opted for some fresh Taboule (my new BFF). Next time, though, I'll need to squeeze some of the water out so that the pizza is crispier.
Are you dying to see it yet???? ok. here are the before and after shots that you have been salivating over:
BEFORE it went in the oven.
the 15 minutes that it takes to make this were excruciatingly loooong. i was hungry. i had already made chicken wings for Z, nuggets for B, and nachos for T. T had made brownies in the middle of all of that, and now it was my turn. whew. we had been shopping, and for almost 2 hours after our return, T and I never left the kitchen.seriously. good times, and no one got hurt (although we did put the hurts to some FOOD!)
ok. without further ado, here is the after. it says it all, i think. give this a try. YOU WILL LOVE IT!
about 10 minutes AFTER it came out of the oven.
So if you have some good ideas, feel free to send them along!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Fun Friday

I had started a post yesterday, in which i was going to be more upbeat about the dreadmill, and trying to embrace the treadmill, and not harp on the rubber band of doom any longer.
This is not that post.
I have decided to go ahead with the Fun Foto Friday meme. Please allow me to pre-empt it by expressing my sympathies to a friend of mine (who isn't a reader, but deserves mention anyway) who's husband lost his battle with cancer early this morning. I had only met him on a few occasions, and they were all while he was a patient and i was helping to care for him. The news was expected, in as much as this type of thing can be 'expected', but it still threw me for a little spin. I am better now, and have regained focus.
Which is what brings me to today's Fun Foto Friday offering. Let's look at a familiar scene from someone else's perspective. I am sure that those of you who have not been living under a rock (or in Siberia) will recognize this scene from the Original Star Wars movie, now know as Episode IV:
"these aren't the droids you are looking for"
Let's see it from the poor StormTrooper's perspective, and try to tie it all in to real life. Stay with me on this, ok? Thanks. They KNOW that these really are the droids that they are looking for. They have been briefed. They read the memo. They have all seen the films, read the blogs of other Troopers, tweeted about their plan of action. Then this old guy comes along waving his fingers basically tricking the Troopers into believing that what they actually believe about the situation is FALSE. For an instant, they question their training, their instinct, their prime directive, and then fall for this false prophet (remember, from the StormTroopers' perspective. we all know that ObiWan is a good guy).
Later, after a few rounds at the local cantina, the poor, defeated, and now a$$-less (from the chewing? hello!) StormTroopers are left to reflect on their day and the choices that they have made (as I am sure most of us do, no?) Suddenly, he realizes that he as been duped, and is downtrodden. He goes into a period of beating himself up for not following his gut, for not trusting his instinct, for not following plan.
self interrogation can lead to misery. don't let it.
It is easy to get caught in the trap of self loathing and self pity. Am I right? during this time, however, we need to reconnect with the things that brought us to where we started along our path as well as refocus on the destination. Ever so often, moments of clarity will seem to fall into place, most often from sources that you wouldn't expect. I find that it is during those times that we need to be most open to learning from various sources, rethink things that we have cast aside in the past and explore them deeper, and even reach out to others for help. It can come from the strangest of places.

why can't I be this clever?
My message today is to never give up. Set a goal, have an idea, make a plan. People and situations will come along and (for good and bad) cause you to stray from your course. Don't let them take over. Take time to regroup, to refocus, to re-evaluate. Find new ways to stay on track. If you need other resources, seek them out, and don't be afraid to back track. But keep the end in mind, and go for it!

Monday, November 1, 2010

the gym at work has undergone some renovations over the past month and has been unavailable for staff. i was really torn up about that, especially since I LOVE the dreadmill rubberband of doom modern torture device just as much as the next armchair runner does.
**aside: as i type, Z is watching ESPN in the living room. they are highlighting some football guy named Randy Moss. I don't really know who he is, or why we care so much about what he has to say, but his interview/press conference really struck a chord with me. please allow me to rant....
Apparently he was fined $25K for 'not talking to the press'. see article here, if you are really interested. i haven't read it. my blood pressure can only go so high before i might have a CVA. nevermind. i couldn't find an intelligent article. suffice to say that contracts require that players:  "must make themselves available to the media at specific times each week. Moss last spoke to the media on Oct. 13, then declined interviews after a win over Dallas on Oct. 17, throughout last week leading up to a loss at Green Bay, and after the defeat. Moss also declined to be available this week despite being in high demand because the Vikings visit New England, for whom Moss played the past three seasons."

Sure. great. whatever. you didn't talk to the press, you should pay a fine. that part i am ok with. but what he SAID during the press conference has my knickers in a knot. The fine was $25k. I dunno about YOU, but a fine of $250 dollars would make my head spin. His comment was something along the lines of "i don't care".
did he really say that? and WHY are we running the conference over and over? Hey, Moss, sit down, and shaddup already.
I imagine that if you take a look at the average income for NFL fans, and then told them that they had to cough up $25,000, it would pretty much put most of the families into hardship. No mortgage payments, no car/truck/4 wheeler payments, no extra trips to wal-mart...oh, wait. am i confusing NFL fans with NASCAR fans? whatever. 
And can ANYBODY tell me, please, where this fine money goes? According to espn, last week over a QUARTER OF A MILLION DOLLARS were collected in fines from NFL players. IN ONE WEEK. Clearly, the 'fines' and punishments aren't steep enough. But where, oh where, does the money go? Anyone?

ALRIGHT, my aside turned into my main rant. sorry about that. i gotta go take dinner out of the oven now, so my story of the first run back on the dreadmill will have to wait for tomorrow.