Day 14610

Feb. 14th, 2006 10:56 pm
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You’d think that turning forty would feel significant somehow. But no, just another day. I’m not even celebrating till the weekend.

The big project from hell at work seems to be done with, so no more long hours for a while. And my back is feeling pretty decent. Now that I have time I should take a sick day and see a doctor. (Where the hell did that work-over-health ethic come from?) First I have to figure out what the new insurance company expects of me.

And trying to keep my drawing skills from totally atrophying:

couple Melorn sketches

Back

Feb. 5th, 2006 08:18 pm
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I was all set to do my laundry, bent over to pick up the basket — didn’t even pick it up, hadn’t touched it yet, just bent over — and something painful happened in my back, just above the left buttock. So I spent some time lying in bed, pretty much unable to move, and gradually recovered. I can now hobble around the apartment, go up and down stairs, even bend over and pick stuff up, but it still hurts, though not as much as earlier.

And my laundry is still undone.
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Sorry for the update slacking, but work’s been a bitch. A scheduling mishap left us with a deadline too close to actually do the work necessary, so I’ve been working late days and even went in on Saturday. Since we’ve actually been having ridiculously nice weather for January (sunny, 50-60°F) while I’ve been stuck in the office, I’ve been feeling like the girl in Ray Bradbury’s “All Summer in a Day”.

And on top of that I’ve had a cold.

And then, on top of that, I couldn’t get to sleep last night. At all. No idea why. But the weird part: I’m not tired. I’ve been totally awake and alert all day. Even now, almost 10 PM, I’m not sleepy, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to sleep tonight either. Also, I’m less hungry than usual. Maybe some subtle radiation exposure has turned me super-human. I scratched my finger on a package of razors this morning, so I’m not invulnerable. It’d suck if I had one of those typical comics origin stories where I wander into the middle of a bank robbery and have to stop the criminals with my powers, and I’d have to be like “Halt, or I’ll follow you home and keep you up all night by yodeling!”
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Target has a policy of allowing its pharmacists to refuse, on religious grounds, to fill prescriptions for “Plan B” contraceptives. Sorry about that link; the blog entry seems to have been written by somebody angered beyond the point of thinking clearly. (The pharmacists aren’t refusing because they think the customer is a sinner, but because they think the product is sinful. Get angry, sure, but don’t take it so personally.)

Anyway, for some reason this is the only such refusal Target allows. If you’re a pharmacist at Target and your religion forbids you from dispensing any other products, you’re out of luck. The legal implications of that could get interesting. And it’s yet more evidence that our culture’s seeming religious arguments are really about sex.

Planned Parenthood has a calmer press release, but it lacks the detail that Target has a special policy just for one drug.

Headsets

Aug. 28th, 2004 11:02 pm
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So, I’ve been really slack on my eating and exercise for about the past eight months or so. As in, lots, and crappy and pretty much not at all respectively. I’ve gained back, well, not all the weight I’ve lost, but more than half of it. My clothes are tight, and I feel like crap. And I’ve only gotten up and gone to the gym like twice in the three weeks since I rejoined.

Today I ate more crap for breakfast, and felt pretty awful for the next few hours — not guilty awful, but tired and sick and cranky awful. Though some of that might be ’cause I got to bed at 6 AM last night. (Games Club post coming up next.)

I tottered around the City Hall area, doing some electronic shopping I wanted to get done before Worldcon. I’ve now got a cellphone, the cheapest one I could get on T-Mobile’s pay-as-you-go plan. And I’ve got a new portable CD player, with MP3 capability and real battery life.

I noticed a much higher than usual proportion of anti-Bush, anti-RNC, anti-Iraq-war, and pro-abortion-rights buttons, signs, stickers, and t-shirts on passers by as I wandered around. When I got back to the WTC Path station, it was surrounded by demonstrators ringing bells to memorialize the dead and “ring out” Bush. The cumulative effect of all the bells was pretty eerie and other-worldly, like a spirits-of-the-dead scene in a Miyazaki movie. I was tempted to get a bell (I was told someone was handing them out) and walk a full circle around the site, but tired and sick and cranky, and also needing a bathroom.

Here’s the good part: After I got home (stopping off at Ground for a cold drink, a political argument, and reading a couple chapters of The Well of Lost Plots), got the cellphone plugged in and charging, figured out how to put together the CD player, I noticed I felt better. More than that, I felt a strong aversion to junk food, and a craving for fruit and veggies. With luck this’ll last into tomorrow, and maybe even sprout a craving for exercise. It feels like a return to the healthy mindset I was in a year ago.

Now it’s time to figure out how to screen-scrape the Noreascon program and chunk it into a set of Palm Datebook appointments.
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OK, my throat isn’t really sore anymore. I’ve still got that voice-thickening phlegm; I did a bitchin’ rendition of Leonard Cohen’s “Everybody Knows” in the bathroom of the Starbucks at 17th and Broadway.

I was in the mood for a small sketchbook, so I picked up a Moleskin unlined notebook at AI Friedman, figuring that the paper might be more absorbent than their sketchbooks (which don’t take ink very well). It is, but the pages are so thin that stuff shows through. Feh. I might just go make my own sketchbook, now that I can afford to get a hunk of watercolor paper.
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The weekend’s trips seem to have left me with the early stages of a cold. Who’d’ve thought waiting in the cold rain for an hour for a bus could do that? On the up side, the phlegm coating my vocal cords let me hit some nice low notes singing “Proud Mary” in the shower this morning. I think I brushed up against our bathroom’s resonant frequency.

While hunting for something else, I found a post from last year about what I was eating last spring, right around the time I first dropped below 270 pounds. This was before Body for Life, while I was alternating Heavyhands around the neighborhood with simple dumbbell routines in my bedroom. The food looked really good. I’d forgotten how much I liked eating healthy and exercising. So I stopped off at the supermarket for veggies, and took out enough money for a month’s gym membership. Now to see if I can get up at 7 tomorrow. Short term target: 250 by the end of April. Longer terms: 220 by Worldcon, 200 by the end of the year. (If you’re the wagering type, put money on the first target, but not the other two.)
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Today was my last day on Atkins Induction. Starting tomorrow, I can start adding more foods into my diet. I picked up some cottage cheese and strawberries at the supermarket. If you’d told me two years ago that I’d be looking forward to having cottage cheese, I’d have said you were nuts. (Nuts! I can have those, too!)

I haven’t been losing as much this time as I did last time, but I have been losing. I don’t think I was following the diet as closely this time; I’ve been eating a lot of ham, while last time it was mostly hamburgers and chicken.

In tech news, I’m migrating back to my old Palm IIIx (expanded to 8 megs of RAM). My Handspring Visor’s battery is dying; I get around two minutes of use before it tosses up battery warnings. I could buy something new, but don’t feel like spending the money. The cheapest model with enough RAM for my needs is the Zire 21, which costs $100, and has only two app buttons — not acceptable. The Zire 71 looks good, but costs $200 (and that’s with a rebate). The Tungsten E is also $200, and doesn’t have the camera. My old Palm IIIx is free, especially since I found the old serial-to-USB connector I bought a few years back, and found the configuration instructions online.

I spent the evening trying to figure out how to get all my software from the Visor to the IIIx. Not just the basic app data, memos and datebook entries and the like, the desktop software takes care of that. I mean all the other stuff I’ve installed over the years. The desktop backup conduit is famously half-assed about this sort of thing.

First try: Sync Buddy (formerly Palm Buddy), Mac desktop software that gives you direct access to your Palm’s storage. Isn’t MacOS X native. I hate having to launch Classic, so I saved this as an option of last resort.

Second try: Pilot-Link, Unix software for linking to your Palm. I couldn’t get it to build from source.

Third try: I couldn’t get Fink to install Pilot-Link either.

Fourth try: Backup Bitster, a shareware Palm app that lets you toggle the backup bits on the Palm itself! Simple, direct, effective. I’m restoring the massive backup to the IIIx as I write this (and have been for over an hour).
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Agh. I just hauled a printer home from the post orifice. About 3/4 of a mile, in 19°F weather. I’m not sure my fingers and forearms work quite right anymore. That’s what I get for not working out since November.

Off Atkins

Dec. 11th, 2003 11:55 pm
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OK, I’m off Atkins. For now. This run was a proof-of-concept, and with fourteen pounds lost in eleven days, without even exercising, I consider the concept pretty damn well proven.

Step 2: I find out how quickly it comes back when I go off.

December is a silly time to be trying to lose weight; I’m officially Not Worrying About It till 2004.

Fruit! Sweet Gaia, I can eat fruit again!

Atkinssss

Dec. 9th, 2003 01:23 am
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I just got a spam message with the subject “Free Ssample Of Welght Lossss Product!” I feel like I’m being spammed by alien snake creatures.

Oh, speaking of weight loss, I dropped another two pounds, says this morning’s weigh-in. That’s eleven pounds in eight days on Atkins, bringing me to 257.

Brrrrrr!

Dec. 7th, 2003 11:55 pm
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Was frickin’ cold today. Yesterday, too. I’ve spent much of the past two days huddled in Ground, where it’s at least warm enough to draw, though yesterday I just finished reading Lisa Goldstein’s The Alchemist’s Door (pretty decent story, if a bit predictable, about John Dee traveling to Prague and meeting Rabbi Loew, and of course the golem comes into it), and started on Shadow & Claw, the first half of Gene Wolfe’s Book of the New Sun. This’ll be my third time through New Sun, and I probably don’t need to tell most of you how brilliant it is. I may keep going on through Long Sun and Short Sun, or I may not, since I didn’t like either of those as much as the original series.

Sketches )

Today I did a little sketching. The two dark-haired women are both sketches of people in Ground. The one on top saw me sketching and asked me to do a drawing to give to her. I did, in a more realistic style, similar to the one of [livejournal.com profile] cthulhia I put up a couple weeks back.

I’ve been one week on Atkins. I’ve lost nine pounds. (Gained back two on Friday, lost ’em again yesterday.) I’ll stick with it through the end of the week, and then see whether I want to stick through till the holiday parties start. I may take it up again in the spring, but winter is a time for comfort foods.

(I can understand my spell-check not recognizing “Atkins”, but suggesting “catkins” as an alternative?)

Below 260

Dec. 5th, 2003 04:57 pm
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Dudes, Atkins rocks the house! Less than a week and I’ve lost nine pounds! That brings me down to 259, the first time below 260 pounds in my adult life! And without even exercising (though I really oughta get back to that).
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I took a week off from BFL, using Thanksgiving as an excuse. Foolish, really.

Anyway, I checked with my doctor about doing Atkins. She said my kidneys were fine, so I could go ahead. (A study that followed 1,624 women aged between 42 and 68 over 11 years found that high-protein diets can make existing kidney problems worse, but don’t damage healthy kidneys. Other studies have shown not even that much danger.) I’m just doing the two-week induction phase, to see what happens.

And tomorrow, back to the gym.
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We had not one, but two power outages this morning!

I bought me some pants! I’d been planning to hold off on clothes purchases till I hit 250 pounds (at which point my parents will by me a whole new wardrobe), but I just needed pants. I found a discount place selling jeans at under $10 a pair, but all too small, nothing over a 42" waist. What’s up with that? Don’t these people know there’s an epidemic of obesity in this country? Let’s see some cheap big pants! Pants for the people! Another shop had some nicer jeans at $30 a pair, but I haggled the guy down to $20 by the simple tactic of turning around and walking towards the door. He gave me the traditional spiel about how the factory wouldn’t even let him sell them if they knew he was letting them go so cheap. I’m sure I was taking food from the mouths of his babies.

Turns out I can wear a 48" waist now! And they’re a bit loose; I could probably take a 47" if goyishe shatnez didn’t prohibit odd numbers. (Maybe five of you got that.)

At Cosmic I picked up, um, issue #1 of Ruule: Ganglords of Chinatown, ’cause it looked cool and there wasn’t anything else I was interested in, and #1 of Plug Perkins, ’cause it was free, and still looked better written and drawn than stuff I’ve paid actual money for.

Met with the usual NYRSF crowd. [livejournal.com profile] kent_allard_jr dissed my epistemology. Them’s fightin’ words!

Got very rained on. My sketchbook got wet, the big Canson spiral-bound. Some of the stuff towards the beginning was done in water-soluble marker, and has suffered. A pain, but not a disaster.

Got home to find a note from our landlord. More power outages! The power outage spirits love us! I headed off to Ground, and on the way ran into the work crew that was fixing our lines, and got a forecast of another fifteen to twenty minutes of darkness. There’s some sort of problem that’s getting a temporary solution tonight, and a more lasting one tomorrow. I hope.

We didn’t get to see Angel, but we’ve got people taping it for us. Top men.
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Y’know what’s cool? Ordering new checks on a Thursday, being told they’ll arrive in two to three weeks, and getting them the following Tuesday, that’s cool. Also waking up in the morning able to feel the new muscular solidity of my chest, that’s pretty cool. And eating not just one but two pieces of the delicious strawberry birthday cake [livejournal.com profile] batyatoon made for [livejournal.com profile] ladymondegreen, and losing two pounds anyway, that rocks pretty hard too.

Cardio numbers )
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[ Mxyzptlk Ives ]I don’t know who this guy is; he looks like a surly cross between Burl Ives and Mr. Mxyzptlk. (If you were a cross between Burl Ives and Mr. Mxyzptlk, you’d be surly too.)

I spent a good chunk of the day being mopey, bailed on exercising, ate food that was bad for me, hung out at Ground for a couple of hours, got only a little sketching done and none of that really constructive.

On the up side, I got my drawing table cleared off (which took much less time than I expected). Actually, it’s not entirely clear, but all that’s on it is art stuff. I could get painting on very little notice, which is the idea.

I also picked up a couple of little (5x7 inch, gallery edge) canvases at Hudson County Art Supply. The shop’s doing well enough that the owner is planning to expand.

And I visited a doctor yesterday, for the first time in a few years. Just a check-up. It didn’t take ten minutes for the doctor to say to her assistant “You can hold him down, and I’ll hit him.” I just have that effect on women.

I got a tetanus booster, ’cause I hadn’t had one in a couple of decades. I understand it’s supposed to hurt for a day or two after, but I don’t feel it. I hope that doesn’t mean there’s something wrong. In other news, my blood pressure is pretty good, and not just good-for-a-fat-guy good, but just plain good.



Here’s a big sketchbook dump! )
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W00t! (As Elmer Fudd said the first time he 0wnz3d a Unix system) I dropped a pound and a half since yesterday, bringing me down into new territory, 261 pounds, my lowest adult weight so far!

Cardio numbers )
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OK, back on the horse. My last Body For Life workout day was more than three weeks ago. Also eight pounds ago, in the wrong direction. Time to get back to work. I can probably get rid of at least half those pounds by the end of the week. Hup hup!

Cardio numbers )

My left wrist has been aching since sometime Friday night, as if I twisted it slightly wrong. Just a little, but I figure cardio today and Tuesday, and lower-body tomorrow, give it till Wednesday to recover before I have to consider doing an upper-body workout.

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