Saturday, May 31, 2008

Worked Up

So, the gym opens at 5:30. I roll out of bed at 6, slip on some sweat shorts, a t-shirt and sneakers to head downtown. I park, walk a block, get to Gold's to find out that 5:30 is just weekdays. They open at 8 on Saturday and 10 on Sunday. Well this just won't do today. I planned on being at work by 8:30 (and I am). I went back home did my pushups and curls, then got ready for work.
Sooooo... Personal debate time. Do I work out tomorrow? Sunday is one of my 7 mile walk days. Or do I start Monday and go M W F? I have to consider that Wed is also a 7 mile day. I hate when I'm on a roll and I get sidelined by outside influnces.
The good news is (and I promise after this I'll lay off the weight loss stuff) I'm down not one, but TWO notches in the belt.


Friday, May 30, 2008

Only Two Things...

Behind my house is a border of bamboo. In the middle of that border is a little gate. Walk through the gate and you are standing on a 6 acre farm, right in the middle of east Austin, less than three miles from the Capitol building. Wednesday and Saturday are market day, but I can walk back there anytime to buy or beg fresh veggies. Carol-Ann and Larry are great folks. This time of year is my favorite... Tomato season! I dearly love me some fresh home grown tomatos. Two slices of wheat bread, a thinly sliced tomato piled high and (diet be damned) a fine coating of mayo. I may not know a Hell of a lot about true love, but you can't beat a home grown Tomato.

Ain't nothin' in the world that I like better
Than bacon & lettuce & homegrown tomatoes
Up in the mornin' out in the garden
Get you a ripe one don't get a hard one

Plant `em in the spring eat `em in the summer
All winter with out `em's a culinary bummer
I forget all about the sweatin' & diggin'
Everytime I go out & pick me a big one

Homegrown tomatoes homegrown tomatoes
What'd life be without homegrown tomatoes
Only two things that money can't buy
That's true love & homegrown tomatoes

You can go out to eat & that's for sure
But it's nothin' a homegrown tomato won't cure
Put `em in a salad, put `em in a stew
You can make your very own tomato juice

Eat `em with eggs, eat `em with gravy
Eat `em with beans, pinto or navy
Put `em on the side put `em in the middle
Put a homegrown tomato on a hotcake griddle

If I's to change this life I lead
I'd be Johnny Tomato Seed
`Cause I know what this country needs
Homegrown tomatoes in every yard you see
When I die don't bury me in a box in a cemetary
Out in the garden would be much better
I could be pushin' up homegrown tomatoes

-Guy Clark

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Overheard At The Belmont On 6th

My lovely friend E: What's that you're drinking, Honey?

Myself: Cranberry Juice. When you're off alcohol and caffine your choices are limited at a bar.

E: How long are you going to quit?

Me: Dunno. I feel I'm still too close to the darkness.

E: Honey, you are the darkness.


Good As Gold

Well, not mentally, but... I'm down to a fighting weight of 190 and have kind of plateaued there. I've brought my food intake back up to a more normal level, but am still keeping it healthy.
I received a few alarmed emails and phone calls from people checking on me, so here's a general announcement. I'm NOT dying. I have no dread disease, I'm not losing weight because I have to nor because I'm sick. My mental state is due to outside factors in both my personal life and my work situation.
Physically I'm healthy as a horse. I'm just tired of being the same size as a horse (regardless of my resemblance to the rear end of one).
The earth fell out from under me last month. Usually if I had problems in one area of my life I'd concentrate on the other. Both went kablooie at the same time this time.
Work is better, and if I can work it out may end up being a great and wonderful (not to mention lucrative) thing for me. If not I may have to start my life completely over. Again.
My personal life is in a shambles. It pretty much has been since I split with my ex-wife seven years ago. I thought I finally had all my shit in one sock (To quote the late, great Acidman), but I was wrong. Again.
In the past when faced with adversity I'd climb into a bottle, don my armor made of hate and anger, and fill the hole in my life with vitriol. I almost did it again.
On May 9th I sat down at the bar and had a shot of Turkey 101 and a Guinness. I was loud and angry and unhappy. One became two, and so on.
I couldn't do that again. I did that for three years and more when I first moved here.
Monday I went for a walk to clear my head. Over the next four miles I came up with the plan I'm on.
This morning I did a little consultation and orientation at Gold's Gym. Starting Saturday and three days a week from that point on I'll be working out. I havn't been a gym member for 20 years. I never was much of a self motivator when it came to that type of thing.
Well, Self, pay attention this time.
I may be a head case, but I'll be an in shape head case.

Thank you for all the support, comments and e-mails. They mean so very much to me... Thank you, thank you. Every little bit counts.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

May Flowers

Back in March I posted about being kind of down... Not realizing what it would turn into... I also mentioned my flower beds and lamented that I had sown seeds instead of plants.
I pulled into my driveway yesterday to see little spots of orange and yellow around my chimney. Soon I hope to see more color... maybe in the form of butterflies.
I may get through this after all.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Last night, I'm not sure what time, I was awakened. Instantly.
My eyes snapped open and I was fully aware of my surroundings.
No dream to trigger it this time, just wide awake.
I didn't move at first, only my eyes opening.
I looked at the light from the window on my wall to see if there was any movement of shadow. None.
I listened intently for some sound... Any sound. No mice in the attic, no creek of the joists, no wind at the window. Nothing.
Slowly I rolled over to look through the bamboo shades. Nothing moving on the bedroom porch. Not even the hanging swing.
I slipped out of bed feeling very surreal and padded around my dark house. I didn't feel any real unease so I left the handgun in it's hiding place.
Bedroom to hall. Looked into the bathroom and moved through the office to the kitchen. Out the window of the kitchen door my Jeep was an unblinking sentinal under the overhang from the shop, completely still and undisturbed. No movement in the driveway... Not even one of the myriad of neighborhood cats that use it as a main route to the farm behind the house.
I stood listening intently. No sound but the slight shifting of my feet and my own breathing.
I moved into the dining and living room. Silence. Not even wind in the chimney. I walked over to the front door and looked out the window there.
What little light that reaches my compound from the street revealed an empty expanse of lawn, the massive live oak standing impassively left of center.
Feeling like a ghost in my own house I glided back into the kitchen and the refrigerator. I poured a glass of cold water ignoring the slight urge to take a shot of bourbon.
I stood at the kitchen sink for a while gazing into the nothing beyond the panes of glass there, then back to bed without ever looking at a clock. I was soon asleep again.
It may be official.
I think I'm insane.


Monday, May 26, 2008

Remember The Men

Respect the sacrifice.
My father, Saipan ca. 1944
(click the pic)
My brother tells about this picture in comments.

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Sunday, May 25, 2008

How I Got My Job


Friday, May 23, 2008

Every Little Bit Counts

My thoughts were gnawing at me so I tried hard not to think
I took a pint of whiskey and poured it down the sink.
I'd get my act together, I swore it to myself
I looked up at your picture and knocked it off the shelf

Every little bit counts
every little bit counts
every little bit counts
every little bit counts

Too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me
too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me

I tried and I tried and I tried to be so good.
Wanted to be good so bad
I tried and I tried and I tried every trick I could
emptied out the whole damn bag

but it was too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me

I'm no longer choking on the hair of the dog
It's been a couple of weeks now since I came out of the fog
The highs are slightly higher, the lows are just as low
A mild improvement on the average, don't you know

Every little bit counts
every little bit counts
every little bit counts
every little bit counts

Every little bit counts,
though it may not count for much
could be long forgotten
by the time you add 'em up

Could be too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me
too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me

Too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me
too little too late, sorry
too little too late for me
-James McMurtry


Thursday, May 22, 2008

Less Of Me To Love (Or Hate)

No words needed.
I guess there is some clarification needed here. I used the March picture because I didn't have anything more recent. I had my last drink of alcohol on May 9th. My last Pepsi on May 11th. Started walking on May 12th. In 9 days I dropped from over 220lbs to 195. On the 10th day I was at my current weight of 190. Come Mon the 26th I'll add situps to the mix for some definition.


Trip And Falls

First off let me start by saying, "No. I am not better."

The dreams have abated somewhat, but I'm still pretty miserable. I've decided to continue to post, but I'm not sure how I came to that conclusion. As per the usual I'll not post on specific problems that I have, but you'll probably notice a subdued tone... at best. That being said...

I went on a little trip to McKinney Falls park in SE austin. It's only about 20 mins from the house. I'm searching for stuff to get the bugs out of my brain. It's a good day trip if you live around here. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Here's a few K.

Scenes like this always make me think of The Planet of the Apes.

That white spot is a heron (or crane) catching fish

I don't know what these are, but there was just one plant in the middle of a bunch of scrub brush.

The lower falls at the park

The other side of the "Apes scape" where Onion creek cut through the limestone.

The new buff K-nine. The background is a 30' drop to the creek. This picture doesn't do the view justice.

Stairs, rails and a bridge in the middle of the woods.

The upper falls. Turtle on rock, one in the water., little bitty waterfall

The old Mckinney homestead ca. 1840. It's fenced off so I couldn't explore.
Prickly Pear in bloom
I sat there waiting for him to stick out his head. He did, I lifted the camera and he ducked.

Happy, happy, joy, joy. The drop behind me is 20'+. Most folk know I'm afraid of heights so this was a huge step for me.


Friday, May 09, 2008

Ask A Silly Question...

I know, I know... I'm supposed to be on hiatus or sabbatical or something, but duty calls.
When my readers ask for something, I can't deny them... Besides I started this.

Redneck writes, "I've got 3 Q's.
Had any squirrel problems lately?
What happened to your lunch time tittie bar posts?
Can you fly yet? ;)
Take care man."

I'm guessing that the first question has to do with the chipmunk story I told at the Austin blogmeet. It's a "kinda had to be there" story which while mildly amusing was catapulted into hilarity by interjections from Eric and one or two others.
The answer to that question is an unfortunate no. I no longer own a motorcycle, hang out with drug crazed freaks or drink myself to sleep in front of an open fire on a cliffside. I miss those days, but I was lucky to live through them the first time.
Although the other night I had a couple of glasses of 90 proof bourbon before bed. I awoke to see someone trying to see into my bedroom window. They were crouched low as though they were trying to see under the bamboo shades. I silently slid out of bed, retrieved my .380 and crept to the door in my bedroom that leads to my private porch where the windows are. I turned the lock slowly and grabbed the door knob. Steeled for almost anything I snatched the door open and jammed my pistol into the face of a huge black cat standing on my windowsill. He stared at me in my Guinness boxers, yowled, hissed, took a swipe at me and fled.
At least I've moved up from rodent to feline.

As to the second question... Work happened. I became a six and seven day a week warrior, for all the good it did me. I'll get back to that when (if ) I return.

The last question also refers to the blogmeet here. 'Neck offered a couple of times to toss my fuzzy butt off the Holiday Inn tower at town lake. Deserved I'm sure.
The answer: I sure hope so. The way my life is going I may find out really soon.

Thanks to all of you for your wishes and prayers. I sure can use them right now.


Saturday, May 03, 2008

Time Out

I'm tired. This isn't fun right now. Life isn't fun right now. I'm going through a big transition right now. Some not so good, some with the potential to be really good... Or really bad.
Thank you to my loyal readers, and the folks who commented and complimented me. I'm sorry if I'm letting you down. I may be back.

I may not.

I'm singing this song, it's time it was sung
I've been putting it off for a while,
But it's harder by now, 'cause the truth is so clear
That I cry when I'm seeing you smile.

So goodbye, so long, the road calls me dear
And your tears cannot bind me anymore,
And farewell to the girl with the sun in her eyes
Can I kiss you, and then I'll be gone.

Every time that I tried to tell that we'd lost the magic we had at the start,
I would weep my heart when I looked in your eyes
And I searched once again for the spark.

So goodbye, so long, the road calls me dear
And your tears cannot bind me anymore,
And farewell to the girl with the sun in her eyes
Can I kiss you, and then I'll be gone.

I can see by your eyes, it's time now to go
So I'll leave you to cry in the rain,
Though I held in my hand, the key to all joy
Honey my heart was not born to be tamed.

So goodbye, so long, the road calls me dear
And your tears cannot bind me anymore,
And farewell to the girl with the sun in her eyes
Can I kiss you, and then I'll be gone.

So goodbye, so long, the road calls me dear
And your tears cannot bind me anymore,
And farewell to the girl with the sun in her eyes
Can I kiss you, and then I'll be gone.
Can I kiss you, and then I'll be gone, can I kiss you, and then I'll be gone.

-Tom Waits

Oh, and M... The AK47 has had more influence in the world than any other. It's cheap, it's reliable, and it has changed the face of our world forever, from military powers to warlords to individule nutjobs. That's just my opinion... I may be wrong.

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Thursday, May 01, 2008

The "A's" Have It

Well, I'd like to thank all the folks who sent me questions... Both of you.
Nice to be loved.

Anyway, here is what you were dying to know:

M asks, "What is your favorite tv show and why?"

Wow, that one is kind of a toughie. With all the different genres out there it's hard to call a clear favorite, not to mention shows that are no more. I'll break it down this way:

Current comedy: How I Met Your Mother - CBS
Why: It's a good mix of characters, subtle humor, and plausible situations.
Basicly, every show provides at least one "knowing smile", at least one "rueful chuckle" and at least one "spit out your soda belly laugh."
Last but not least it's not your typical "couple sitcom" about fat and/or stupid men and the beautiful women who put up with them.

Runner up: Big Bang Theory - CBS
Why: Most of the same reasons, but too stereotyping. The nerds are just too nerdy.

Current Drama: NCIS - CBS
Why: I like the whole CSI crime genre and this has it without being too CSI-y. The CSI series have gotten too glam for my tastes. NCIS has a good mix of crime fighting, action, and science plus once again a good mix of characters... The tough guy, the egomaniac, the computer geek, the scientists. I've recently started netflixing this show from the beginning to see missed episodes.

Runner up: Numbers - CBS
Why: Same reasons as NCIS, just not as much of them.

Current Sci-Fi: None
I dont have cable, and what is the deal with all the vampire cop shows? It's been done. Remember Forever Knight?

Current Animation: The Simpsons - FOX
Why: If I have to explain, you wouldn't understand. They do seem to be running out of Ideas though.

Runner up: Family Guy - FOX
Like the Simpsons only more cras... And like the Simpsons they seem to be running out of ideas too.

As far as past shows go Farscape - SCIFI stands above the rest in my memory. The pop culture references, the action and the muppets made it great.


Eric asks, "... shaved that mustache/goatee thinggy off yet?..."