Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Day 48: 34 Pounds

Finally! I broke the plateau crisis.

I had been stuck at 272 for what seemed to be forever then the unthinkable happened...I GAINED a pound? Huh?! WTF!! It took almost another week, but finally, tonight, I'm down to 271. Next stop, the '60s, baby! 260s that is.

Plateaus like this are normal and to be expected. I remember plateauing (wow, spell check allows that word)  every time my weight came to a round number factor of ten threshold like 230 or 220 BINT. Now it seems those stall outs don't necessarily follow that pattern. Of course I know they didn't BINT either, it was just a coincidence. The scale is indifferent to your wants and desires. It's a cold-hearted bitch.

Tonight, as I walked to the bathroom scale, it was like I was in a spaghetti western, sauntering down the middle of the dusty street, tumbleweeds rollin' on by in the sienna-tinted late afternoon sun, puffin' on my stump of a self-rolled cheap cigar, hands hanging close to the guns on my belt, pokin' out the bottom of my shabby woolen poncho.

Tooey-ooey-ooooh....Waa, Waa, Waaaaa!
Tooey-ooey-ooooh....Waa, Waa, Weeeeey!

One of us...Punk! One of us is going down tonight!

I stepped on it. It "drew." I "drew." And, well...

I won.

Waa, Waa, Waaaaa!

Here We Go Again!

I'm watching live streaming coverage of attorney motions for inclusion of exculpatory evidence in the George Zimmerman trial coming up in a month or so. Boy this seems all too familiar...

If you remember, back in the summer of 2011, just two years ago, I devoted many a post on this blog to the infamously insane circus that was the Casey Anthony trial. Now, Central Florida will again be the focus of the world in what will possibly be an even more sensational and intensely scrutinized courtroom drama extraordinaire.

I'm going to withhold my personal opinion as it stands thus far in this case primarily since I haven't really done due diligence in absorbing, and then filtering through, the massive amount of "evidence" surrounding this case, especially as it seems everywhere I look, I can't seem to get an objective, unbiased viewpoint. I don't remember a murder case that has sparked so much enmity among huge segments of the population for either the defendant or, amazingly, the victim. The internet is literally strewn with extremely passionate opinions. Unlike the Casey Anthony trial where virtually everyone agreed that the victim, little Kaylee, was undeserving of her fate, here, in this case, we have a huge contingency of people who feel the victim "got what he deserved."

All I know for sure, at this juncture, is that once again, the eyes of the world will be focused on our local area and our local courts for their insatiable need for dramatic spectacle. And who am I to nod disapprovingly? Are you kidding? I'll be right here, reporting on my first hand observation of what I'm sure, once again, will be the Comical and Crazy Courtroom Circus that is the Florida justice system.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

FLASHBACK SPECIAL: Day Runner Notes, August to October, 1997

Continued...

August

2 - 12-5, GLCS. As part of my DUI sentence, I had to complete 50 hours of community service. In Florida, one could chose any approved non-profit community-based program to do your work at. I chose to do Saturday afternoon clerical and reception work at the Orlando Gay and Lesbian Center called, back then, GLCS. This might have been my first day. I would eventually complete my 50 hours and liked it so much that I decided to continue for months afterwards volunteering for my own sense of community pride.

4 - Injury to toe. This was actually the first instance of gout. I just thought I'd broken a toe. Having no insurance, I didn't have it looked at. Just took some time off from work, (like I needed an excuse to do that) took lots of ibuprofen and rested it. If it was gout, as I suspect, that's pretty much all I could have done anyway.

7 - 12 pk. (sad face). Ugh. Here we go. Sure enough, this notation ends up being written in many times more through the month, especially in the last week or so. Several were back to back days. Grrr. That's some serious drinkin' there, buddy!

13 - Start Sprint. So I left DM (without even letting them know...eh, they got over it as you'll see) and worked outbound telemarketing at Sprint. Potential for being taken on as a Sprint worker after some months of contract service was a big lure. Hopes were high on this day. They wouldn't stay that way though.

That's pretty much it for August. We see a couple days taken out of work at Sprint in the last week of the month. Days that just happen to coincide with the now-more-popular "12 pk. with a sad face" notations. Coinky-dinky? Hmmm. Oh, and there seem to be weights recorded for every day throughout the month. Started at 207, down to 197 two weeks later, but back up to 206 by month's end. A pound a month, hangover days off and lots of beer. Oh this is a great diet, for sure!

September

2 - Toe aching again. If it's gout, as I suspect it was, it's no wonder. All that beer, sitting in a call center job, probably just laying in bed with the A/C full blast after work since, I remember, I was definitely not acclimated to Florida summers yet.

5 - 12 pk. This and all drinking notations from here on out no longer have a little sad face drawn next to them.. I guess I decided it wasn't sad anymore. The disease does that. Makes falling deeper and deeper into the abyss a relatively guilt-free and aloof affair.

6 - 12 pk.

7 - 6 pk.

8 - Out Sprint. Hmm. Really, I wonder why?

9 thru 11 - Out Sprint  All these days too? 

12 - Responded to Justin's Ad.

16 - Met Justin. So this is when I first met Justin in person, four days after responding to his AOL MTM (Male-To-Male) dating ad. We'd chatted in AOL private AOL chat rooms, Instant Messaged and talked on the phone for hours upon hours. I was desperately lonely. In a new state, no friends, job I hated, dwindling finances and the woes that comes with that. Not to mention drinking heavily and getting fat. Oh I was a mess. But I behaved well, I guess, 'cause I was able to attract the attention and hold it of a real, live twink. Hmmm, maybe things are really looking up for me? Maybe I found my true love? Did I? I'll not ramble on about this relationship here. Go here if you want the full scoop.

21 - Moved into Northlake Blvd. (airborne mattress) Oh what fun that was. What do I mean by "airborne mattress?" Didn't you follow the above link? Maybe you should.

26 - Out Sprint. Out to Cooker w/ Justin. Out to Southern w/ Justin. Southern...short for Southern Nights our fav club.

27 - 6 pk. and 6 pk. w/ Justin. Hey, why not enable young boys into our web of alcoholism? Well, he was actually "of age" you know.

28 - To Ocala w/ Justin. Remember what I wrote about this day? Ya, it's in that link, okay?!

29 - Cleared all stuff out Lakeside South. Old apartment duly abandoned and left with several months unpaid rent. Wasn't really the first time, and as Koyaanisqatsi will attest to, wouldn't be the last.

October

In the grayed out boxes representing the first days of the week starting September 28 I wrote this:

out Sprint (all week) Oh oh. Here we go again.

2 - Justin B-day (sad face) Asta Lavista (sp) Baby. Justin breaks up with me.

3 - Quit Sprint I remember I actually showed up at the office to tell them I quit. Oh, and to pick up my last paycheck.

5 - toe ache, minor  Gout again.

7 - Returned to DM  See, all was forgiven. Well, kinda. They actually will hire back anyone who didn't murder a fellow employee. Well, if they made sales, maybe that could be forgiven too...

11 - Borrowed $350 from Cindy. Nat. Coming Out Day City Hall festivities. I never repaid the money I borrowed from my sister, nor did I use it for what I said I would...to pay rent owed to my Altamonte roommate Steve. After my volunteer time at GLCS I went with a couple other guys from the Center and watched the activities (mainly podium proclamations from openly gay Orlando "celebrities") at the "Big Glass Dildo" (this sculpture, which back then had just recently been installed, outside the also newly-built Orlando City Hall.)

12 - To Southern w/ Justin, then to his house (smiley face) Make up sex? I really don't remember. Earned a smiley face so I'm thinkin'....yeah.

13 - out DM. To Skull Kingdom. Takin' time off from the "new job" again. Skull Kingdom was this really cheesy tourist trap haunted house attraction on I-Drive, but it was a good evening out with my roommates.

The rest of the month are just weight records (from 201, jumping up a week later to 208 then retreating back to 201 by Halloween) days off from DM which seemed to be increasing, and work out/non work out days. (I was doing fairly well in this regards...usually 3 to 4 times per week. I remember stepping was my work out of choice.) Oh, and also, I'd started charting my drinking by jotting down the number of drinks surrounded by a diamond symbol. It looks like, if I am to believe my past-self's honesty in record-keeping, I was pretty much keeping it under control.

The last three months of the year I only used these pages to record my weight loss progress, (Which I did diligently. It shows a steady progression to getting back into the 180's again) workouts (which increased in frequency) and drinking (which decreased significantly). I remember being very stressed these last months of 1997, as I hurtled towards my next crisis that would eventually spark the New London Syndrome.

FLASHBACK SPECIAL: Day Runner Notes, April to July, 1997

More calendar entries from the past.

April

1 - 9:00 Arraignment DUI charge County Court Vero Beach.  I was a nubbie back then to criminal processing but this was actually my Pre-Trial, which, since I plead out, effectively placed sentencing in the hands of this judge and at this time. My lawyer did nothing I couldn't have done myself. back then everyone advised me to get a lawyer so I did, but I later found out it was a waste of money since I didn't really need him. Not as a first-time offender with a pristine record.

3 - 10:30a Southwest Air. Back home to RI...home for just a bit more, that is.

4 - Have key chain project done, present to Barry. Barry was the owner of Capitol Real Estate, my "big" client. He wanted me to make up clear plastic key chain fobs with photos of the new homeowner's houses in them. I had the vision of how these could be produced but the material alone would have been prohibitively expensive as photo-realistic color digital printing was not cheap or easy. Back then with 1990's technology, of course. Nowadays, it's so simple non-technical people can do it on their own. 

7 - Start full time PC Logistics. The job...cold calling from a cheap list of moldy leads for IT parts and upgrades. Made my telemarketing days seem rosy.

8 - Call Lois Prout (401) 464-2580. I don't remember who this is or why I needed to call her. Maybe I should try her number now? I Lois, remember me from 16 years ago? No? Oh well.

9 - Upgrade Sullivan system to Win 95. Yeah, people were actually still upgrading to Windows 95. And, if I'm not mistaken, I think this guy was going from DOS! Oh I must have had many hours of counselling time planned up my sleeve for selling him this! Oh, and this guy BTW was a Cozmo's client (meaning my own, personal customer) which I had agreed to NOT do anymore (as part of a non-competition condition of employment) since I now worked in sales for another reseller. Oops, bad me! Tee hee. Oh, and what's more...I'm pretty sure the version of Windows I'd sold him was pirated. Ooooh, I was so bad ass then!

14 - CPR 6-8:30 Fabien. Obviously an appointment I jotted down well before I quit NRIARC.

May

1 - Move In Day. Wow. I skipped a lot of important stuff that went down from April 14th to this day. Well, to summarize those two weeks, I'd decided I hated the PC Logistics job so I just up and quit. An action that today would be labeled an "embarq." I was soured on the prospect of further computer sales and got really depressed. As I watched The Masters tournament on TV (the one where Tiger Woods first rose to international fame) I saw how green and spring-like it was in the South. Outside my window of my little room I saw how dark, grey, cold and ugly Rhode Island was. Something clicked inside me. I decided to move to Florida. Now there were a lot of other factors that went into that decision, most of which I'd already posted about but within two short weeks I'd gotten myself to this day, May 1st, in my new apartment in Orlando.

2 - Contact FL DMV re: work permit. My driver's licence had been suspended and would continue to be so for another five more months so I needed a work permit to drive.

5 - Start day DM - Orlando. The job I'd gotten as a result of my rapport with my old boss from DialAmerica in Warwick who vouched for me with the general manager in Orlando.

June

No entries. Must have been too busy working, right? Um. No, more like drinking and loafing.

July

1 - Shows a little sketch of a bottle labeled "XXX" with an international "DO NOT" symbol (you know, the red circle with the diagonal line bisecting it) over it. Obviously I decided to quit drinking. Gee, I wonder how long that lasted...(glancing down the page)...oh, okay, well you'll see in just a little bit...

7 - Victims Impact 6:30 - 8:30 national Safety Council - Primrose. This was big fun. Teary-eyed mothers and children of people killed in drunk driving accidents plead to an audience of us offenders to stop our evil ways before it's too late for some other innocent family. I understand the reasoning behind this but it was a little over-dramatic for my tastes and you could feel the utter hatred oozing off of some of the victims directed towards us. Um, don't "Minority Report" pre-judge me, lady!

16 - Another international "DO NOT" sign, this time with the letters "PPA" under it. I must have felt it was to blame for some side effects I guess. Looking down the page, I see I kinda needed it. Was starting to get chunky.

17 - HIV/AIDS awareness class 5 N. Bumby Red Cross. Why the state needs you, as a condition of your sentencing from a DUI, to attend this is beyond me?

21 - 214 Huh? 214? What's that mean. then I look ahead. Several days later on in the month have numbers...210, 206, 204, 206, 205. Weight! I was chunky and trying to do something about it. I was on a diet. I also see symbols near the weights of either a star or a circle. I remember this meant I either exercised (a star) or didn't (a circle) for that particular day. A proto, low-tech "MyFitnessPal" of sorts.

23 - Sprint interview NORRELL. I wasn't too enthusiastic about working at DM so what do I do? Look at doing another telemarketing job. Brilliant. Well, it would take many years for me to learn this lesson.

31 - 12-pk. (sad face). Hmmm. Looks like I'm off the wagon again.

FLASHBACK SPECIAL: Day Runner Notes, January to March, 1997

I was in my hell hole of a closet searching around for something a couple weeks ago and I stumbled across some pages I'd kept out of an old 3-ring binder hand held folio called the Day Runner system.

You see, kids, back before we had technology, people like me who liked to plan out their things-to-do used calendar planner systems like these where appointments and reminders and such were written down, by hand, using a pencil or pen (gasp!) on paper. Yes, paper! What were we thinking?! Oh the rainforest trees that gave their lives to our Yuppie hedonistic ways of the late 20th century! Oh the tragedy!

So anyway, long before anyone had heard of the term "carbon footprint" I used these and somehow, through all the moves and possession purges and shit that has happened over the course of the past decade and a half, I still have a few pages from the days of The Spice Girls, Titanic and the first Harry Potter book.

The following timeline details all the notations I had for each day I had made an entry throughout that year. Italics represent present day explanations for these entries:

January

7 - Dr. B, 10am for crown adjustment. I (probably psychological) thought the gold crown I'd gotten the month before was ill-fitting and causing an awkward misalignment of my bite. The doctor "drilled it down" a bit (probably imperceptibly just to placate me) and it seemed better thereafter.

11 - Used all Amoxicillin - some fluid still present. I can't remember what this referenced. Some infection I'd guess.

12 - C. Nordberg: 1 hour. I kept track (for billing purposes) of the time spent during my computer consultation sessions with my Cozmo's Gizmos clients. Carol Nordberg was a totally technophobic housewife from a small town in Massachussets (Bellingham or Blackstone, I think) who couldn't even double-click a mouse. Ugh!

14 - K. Valletta: 2 hours. I don't really remember this one. I think it was Barbara Valleta's brother or something like that. No doubt a member of her family. Barbara was a co-worker at NRIARC.

15 - Capitol: 2 hours. Capitol was Capitol Real Estate, one of my rare business clients I consulted for/provided software and hardware upgrades. They were the most eager customer as well, if I recall. If I had decided to stay in RI and actually work towards developing my business into a truly sustainable one, this could have been the client that would have got me there.

16 - Staff Mtg. 6:30 - 8:30. Though I used this day planner more as a note keeping, journal entry record keeper, I also used it as it was intended: as an appointment reminder.

18 - OT approved. Worked double at Elm St. 4:30 - 11 then 11-9. Oh how I liked those doubles. Really needed them to boost my meager wages into something more livable.

20 - Holiday. 7 hours paid off-time approved. Room begun. The "room" was my new digs living on the second floor of John Chifalo's house on Duke St. I cleaned it out, painted, furnished and decorated.

21 - K. Valletta: 1 hr. and book. 6:00/Holiday Ave. Another hour of consultation billing and a computer book sold. I don't remember what the 6:00/Holiday Ave. appointment was.

22 - Capitol: 2 hours plus mouse. Room completed.

25 - C. Nordberg: 1 hour plus book. 10A/Bellingham. Well I'm feeling now that 10A/Bellingham was the time and address for the consultation. So the Holiday Ave. note must have been K. Valletta's address. I really don't recall. I feel so Alzheimer's.

31 - Russ and Kim. Have form ready. Oh boy. Russ and Kim are my brother and his now ex-wife. They wanted me to be their newborn's godfather. The form mentioned is the paperwork I had to get a Providence area Catholic priest to sign off that I was "suitable" for godparenthood. I really had big problems with this. Kim assured me, knowing I was not a church goer, that I'd only need to give the priest a "monetary donation to the Church" (in other words, a bribe) to get him to sign the form. Oh brother! I REALLY had BIG problems with this.

February

9 - Kyle bapt. 12:30? Alright, so here's how it went down. I couldn't bear the thought of going against everything I believed in (or don't believe in as the case may be) and approach a priest to complete the form. The more I thought about it the more I hated the whole idea of the tradition of godparents to begin with. So I called Kim to let her know that I just couldn't do it and would not be Kyle's godfather. She was pissed, and though I didn't talk to him about it, I'm sure my brother was REALLY pissed at me. Kim had to revamp the baptism plans so lat minute that she couldn't find another godfather candidate in time so a girlfriend or relative of her's stepped in, and Kyle got two godmothers. I unfortunately damaged my already rather tenuous relationship with Kim and Russell even further, but I just had to stand up against hypocrisy. 

18 - Dr. B. 1:30

March

2 - oh Happy Day! :( 11:30 pm arrest time. My fist DUI. Read all about it here.

3 - 6 pm released from IRC jail. IRC is Indian River County.

7 - Contacted Bruce Smith Vero Bch. Attny. 1:00 pm My incompetent but thankfully harmless DUI lawyer.

10 - Called Florida DMV

11 - Called Ron Avila. Hired lawyer. Got estimate. Sent withdrawl req. for annuity, oh...and quit my job. Whew! So, okay, Ron Avila was the Sales Manager at the computer reseller in Attleboro I eventually got hired by. Estimate from Bruce Smith, the lawyer I hired on how much he would cost ($750) for which he only got part. Withdrawal req., I think was the request for dissolving my 403b since, as noted next, I quit my NRIARC job. I go into that here.

13 - 6:30 - 8:30 Staff Mtg. Fabien. Staff meeting at Fabien St. offices which I didn't really need to attend I guess since I was now just fulfilling my two weeks notice.

14 - 403? Arc. This note is an estimate of what my bi-monthly paycheck would be. Yes folks, I only made a smidge over $400 every two weeks take home pay. How did I live on that?

18 - 10 am PC Logistics. Dr. B. 1:00 Interview for new job. And more dentist time. Man, she loved my insurance. I paid no co-pay or anything so okay by me.

20 - Call Bruce Smith at 11:30a

24 - Last day at ARC. Boo hoo. Really. I liked that job. Very similar to what I do now.

25 - 11am Dr. B. I swear I was NOT having an affair with her! I just had really fucked up teeth!

28 - ARC plus accrued vaca time. Woo hoo! Rollin' in it!

31 - 7:30a Flt. # (never wrote it in) Southwest Air. Off to court in Florida.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Day 42: 33 Pounds

Although I saw someone on a fitness forum spell it like the famous Greek philosopher's name mentioned in the previous post, I know exactly how to spell the weight loss phenomenon I'm currently enduring...PLATEAU.

My scale has become stubborn and simply refuses to accredit me the weight loss I feel I deserve. I mean, what's the story here? Logically, one would surmise, I'm taking in less calories than I'm expending per day. How am I not losing weight? It would seem impossible!

I was doing well up until last weekend when, admittedly, and regrettably, I, um, slipped again. Yup. The same after work "Miller Time" craving that took hold of me a couple of weeks earlier hit again. this time it was a six-pack of Bud Light Platinum. I don't even really like this beer. To be honest with you, all I saw was 6% alcohol and I was sold.

I wanted to limit the nasty business to just a six pack but I also wanted to get as fucked up as a six pack could allow. Oh my disease...she's an evil and crafty bitch. Throw in some MORE chips and salsa like before and, well, we tally up past the 2000 calorie mark really quickly. Then the next day, I finally break out a festered away but definitely not forgotten box of spaghetti from the recesses of my kitchen cupboard and I tack on another multi-thousand calorie, carb-dense pig-out-a-thon.

So since then I've tried to get "back on track" and feel I've done well too, only to be mocked by a pitiful two pound further loss.

Well, actually, two pounds in a week is, after all, considered really accelerated weight loss. More than what's "recommended" by the so-called gurus, but I was used to those nice sharp nose-dive plummets.

The thing that bothers me most though are these "Miller Time" urges. They come on really strong, and really fast. This last one, I was simply headed into Publix for...uh, well, I don't remember what...once I walked through those automatic doors my head cleared of anything else except the beer. That's how powerful they are.

This was NOT a challenge BINT. I was fully converted then. Like a newly "born-again" religious fanatic, I was fastidious in my abstinence in theory and in practice. I know I lack the same resolve this go-round.

I shudder to think how hard this all will be once the Phen Rainbow Magic fades away and reveals the cold harsh light of bitter deprivation and harmful starvation. I know that's how my Evil Mind's spin doctor will pitch it.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Plato's Insomniatic Cave

I live a Plato's Cave existence. Akin to his allegory of stark limitations to one's perception of the world around them, my apartment walls and ceiling, though thin, mask all visual connection to the variety of thumps, clacks and creaks I hear daily as I lay in quasi-consciousness trying fruitlessly to get a good day's sleep.

In my mind's eye I can "see" the goings-on of the interiors of my neighbors' dwellings and it disturbs me.

Upstairs, the Wacko Dysfunco Mom (single mother with only occasional visitation rights to her irritatingly-noisome baby-daddy's brats due to the divorce settlement based on her mental instability*) paces incessantly throughout the day and night. Her footfalls are like a hyper-enthusiastic Russian soldier goose-stepping in a May Day parade. "Is it our regular afternoon thunder storms or is it HER again?" I wonder wearily and woefully in my half-awake nightmare thoughts.

*All back story information on my neighbors is entirely fictionalized, of course, since I don't actually know them. I only hear them.

The bed head wall emits a very faint and very rare subtle noise. A muffled thunk. I "see" it as a small cabinet door with a slight spring back action hinge. The hinge allows the door to shut closed flush to the little felt pad pressure points with a gentle tug. The door is part of a larger cabinet made of fairly nice quality pressboard or MDF covered in a smart-looking wood grain veneer. The eerie part of this is, true to this topic as I've never really seen it, I've heard this very same thunk ever since I moved in here two and a half years ago. And that's at least four different tenants! Was the cabinetry installed by the apartment complex? I don't think so since I could swear I heard it getting electric-screwdriver fastened to the wall shortly after I moved in. Why is it still there?

From the other wall, Apartment Number 17, I hear the most disturbing of all my early evening noises: nothing. Only once in a blue moon, so to speak, do I hear anything. And that's only the front door to that apartment quietly and fleetingly opening and closing, no doubt someone entering or exiting quickly. And stealthily. I never hear what goes on in there, even when I have my ear pressed firmly to the wall. Not a peep.

They're terrorists. I'm sure of it. They're plotting something. Not enough traffic for drug pushers. And no muffled cries from hapless victims as if they were serial killers. So they must be a terrorist cell. Quietly assembling bomb vests. Right here next door to me.

Or maybe I just need to get more sleep?

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Yet Another Visit To Bob Carr

Last night I went to see the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra's musical theater production of "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying." Let me just say, I was blown away! I was not expecting a top notch performance from a local company doing a one show day stint, but that's precisely what I got.

Of course I loved the 1967 movie starring Robert Morse (who now plays Bert Cooper on "Mad Men") and saw it quite a few times. But I'd never seen a rendition of either the original 1961 Broadway show from which the movie sprang or the 1990s retooled run from which this production is taken. And seeing how the troupe of local boys and girls from little ol' Orlando treated it, this musical must be one of their favorites too. You could really tell that each cast member was having a ball putting on this fantastic show.

The plot basically follows something like this: Ambitious, but corner-cutting young window washer reads a "how to" book on getting ahead quickly in a business career, and sets about to implement what he learns. He rises through the ranks of a large New York based corporation in Space Age fashion...that is - like a rocket! Through opportunistic guile and a heck of a lot of sheer luck, he gets promotion after promotion to the utter frustration of his coworkers and happens to fall in love along the way. Of course, it's a very campy comedy.

The musical numbers were spot on. The set design was decent. And like the Philharmonic's production of the opera "Madama Butterfly" I'd attended last month, they placed the orchestra right on stage behind the players. Sometimes even interacting within the scenes to hilarious effect.

Needless to say, I got my $35 worth. For sure. I'll probably see the Broadway musical touring production of "Book of Mormon" in October here at the Bob Carr but after that, we'll pretty much be at the end of the 2013 season and I'll wait out for the 2014 season's first performances at the new performing arts center currently under construction. So maybe one last time ol' Bob Carr, then it's adios to you, forever, mu chacho!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

And The Winner Is...

Denise!

I had a little pool running in my head ever since I started my back-to-healthy initiative. That was, I wondered: Who would be the first person I come in contact with on a regular basis that will notice my weight loss and say something about it? Well it was Denise, the part-timer who works a jacked-up schedule consisting of a few hours in the early morning and a few hours in the evenings all different days of the week. She filled in on my shift last night, since Eric had PTO, and immediately said: "You lost a lot of weight, didn't you?"

Frankly I'm surprised. I really thought I'd have to get nearer to around 250 (ie. about 50 pounds weight loss) before anyone would notice and ask. Even I have trouble seeing a noticeable change but on reflection, and looking more fairly, I do actually notice a slight change. It's just nowhere near far enough for my satisfaction so I'm perceiving the change as nil.

I can't wait 'till I get back to my goal weight. Ric would be the only person who would have seen me at near my goal, roughly in the low 180s back in 1998 when I first met him. Within a year after rooming with and befriending him, I'd shot up to over 200 and kept on steadily climbing. I never once saw the 100s again.

But look out baby! 'Cause here I come.

And then the winner will be...

Me!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Day 30: 28 Pounds

So as I mentioned in the last weight loss update post, I was really eating way under my basal metabolic rate and knew it was not recommended, but since I didn't feel hungry, thanks to the Phen, I chose to ignore the common opinion and consumed no more than 1000 calories a day. Well, I started feeling more and more dizzy and faint each day and I had this weird olfactory phenomenon where I'd smell what smelled like bath or mineral salts almost all the time. And the smell wasn't coming from my skin, as I'd assumed, thinking it was the salts in my sweat, it was a phantom smell that probably only existed in my brain. Weird. I know if you're in ketosis you can emit an acetone smell...it wasn't that, but now thinking about it, maybe it was and my brain perceived it as a salts smell. I never asked anyone else if they could, well, smell me.

Anyway, I decided to up my calories a bit and now I'm usually able to eat about 1200 to 1300 a day. seriously, I feel like any more would be too much. I get too full. probably because I've eliminated all "bad" foods (except those fish fillets) and eat what my father would call "rabbit food" only. Salads with lots of leafy greens and vegetable soups without meat or starch. I've also cut out most animal products after being influenced by "Foodmatters" and "Forks Over Knives." I'm enjoying tofu again. Well, not really. It still sucks.

I also had a bit of a slip, to be honest, last week. One morning coming home from work I had an irresistible "Miller Time" urge. I was a 1970s steelworker bellying up to the bar with my blue collar manly men friends. In my head, of course. So I had to get some. You know. The Evil Liquid. And a big bag of tortilla chips with salsa! I regretted it well before I got to the hangover phase and threw much of it up, which diminished the severity of the inevitable hangover, but not the severity of my self-disappointment.

I'm well back on track this week though and have finally broken a new record. Now at 277, I believe it's the first time I've weighed less than 280 since at least 2007 likely though it could be as long ago as 2005. You see, I know I weighed well into the 300's in the summer of 2007, according to this post, and I think, as Ric had snidely predicted, that I'd gained several pounds soon after getting my driver's licence back. I can't recall what I weighed in 2006, but it likely was higher than ever before since I was getting rides into work most of the time and I was eating and drinking more. I distinctly remember when I saw this photo, taken in Spring 2006 that I thought I looked much heavier than ever before.

So this endeavor I'm undertaking, aside from all the usual benefits, and believe me, I'm feeling them, is sort of a time machine as well. As I lose more and more weight, I revert to an earlier version of myself. Myself in the past. And it's like I'm going back. Back in time.

Now if only I could do the same about my age!

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Let TV Freedom Ring

I've been slow to catch on to the revolution that's been underway for several years now but I finally think I've achieved total freedom from the bonds of traditional commercial television. Quite an accomplishment for someone in my generation, let me tell you. I, like many boomers, grew up with TV. It was my surrogate third parent.

Last week, I cancelled cable.

Now, this doesn't mean that I don't watch TV programming anymore. But it's availability via the producer's websites, outlets like Netflix and Hulu, and digital download means one doesn't have to put up with a TV network's programming schedule that doesn't fit your availability and, of course, the commercials.

Oh how I don't miss the commercials.

I've been watching some really terrific shows lately too. Breaking Bad and American Horror Story were my first forays into the world of internet streamed television, but the networks that produce these, AMC and FX respectively, have lately stopped streaming content via their sites. Lack of ad revenue? Not sure why, but several other networks continue to make their programming available online and show no sign of ceasing this practice.

Netflix got me hooked watching great television series via their website as well. Downton Abbey, Mad Men, The Tudors, Boardwalk Empire and Homeland have been my favorites. Cued up for viewing in the near future are Game of Thrones and Borgia. They also produce their own series, most recently House of Cards (Netflix American version) with Kevin Spacey. Riveting! Can't wait for next "season," which really is installment since all episodes are uploaded at one time. What a luxury being able to watch shows on your schedule, not some network's.

I was initially afraid that cancelling cable would mean I'd potentially miss out on content from the traditional broadcast networks, but, for example, both NBC and CBS have their most recent episodes of Saturday Night Live and The Amazing Race up on their sites hours after the air broadcast, so it's no problem whatsoever.

Ah, the joys of freedom! I don't miss the mornings I'd come home from work and flip through channel after channel of the hundreds of them available, only to find they have crap like infomercials or idiotic programming available on them. No more enduring some twenty odd minutes of irritating commercials just to watch one freaking show.

And, most of all, no more of my precious dollars being wasted on crappy and glitchy cable TV from Bright House, the longtime bane of my existence.

Who knew just a few years ago...

The internet shall set you free!