Archive for the ‘pet peeves’ Category

I’ve noticed something over the four years I’ve been doing this blog… whenever I let the blogging lapse, the weight creeps back on. Curious cause and effect, but it bears looking into.

I had a visit with Dr. McPhee today. He challenged me to avoid all processed carbs for a month and see what happens. I was expressing my discontent at the fact I’m pretty much sedentary due to the foot issues and he says he has patients that have found success with this approach. It’ll be  a challenge, since I do like my pasta and crunchy snacks. He managed to ease the blow by saying I could have some corn and potatoes. Not tons, but it’s a start.

I immediately enlisted Supportive Partner Woman (fellow lover of carby goodness!) who agreed to go in, just not right away, because we have a LOT of that stuff in the house and it seems a shame to throw it away. I can respect that… food is expensive, after all. I did start today and made a very yummy lunch… cedar plank roasted Copper River salmon with an ear of fresh, quasi-local sweet corn and some steamed broccoli. I was amazed at just how much protein is in the salmon… MyFitnessPal calculated 26.2 grams in a portion slightly less than 4 oz. That’s some serious protein.

I added something to the kitchen arsenal this week, as well. I finally got a food grinder attachment for the KitchenAid mixer. This thing is AWESOME! I took a nice sirloin, ran it through the grinder and made some caramelized sweet onion burgers for the grill. The meat was probably a little too lean for the purpose, as the burgers were a little dry, but the taste was spot-on. I’m looking forward to grinding my own turkey, since the stuff you get at the store is kind of nasty. I think it will make for excellent turkey meatloaf and turkey burgers, not to mention it can be cheaper to buy the whole piece and grind it yourself. Woot!

Other than that, there’s not too much going on. I find myself getting sad when I drive by the trailheads because on some of these lovely days we’ve been having, it would be nice to go out and take a walk/run/wog. Alas, thanks to Wayne being obstinate, no dice.

This pretty much sums up my feelings on soccer

This pretty much sums up my feelings on soccer.

In other news, many folks around the world are watching the World Cup. I realize I’ll take some heat for saying this, but I just don’t get it. I mean I respect the athleticism and skill, and I respect the fact that a lot of people love the game, but, on the whole, I’d rather watch hockey or baseball. I know, you people are saying, “You like baseball and you’re bored by soccer?” My usual response is to say that there aren’t many other sports where you can fail 70% of the time and be considered one of the greats.

At any rate, that’s going to do it for this post. Expect to see more in the coming weeks as I rededicate myself. I’ll also let you know how things go with the no processed carbs challenge.

Now where can I find some meat?

So, here we are. The Day After the Most Important Election in History. At least that’s what CNN says. Granted, they would hype a school board race in Perry County if they thought it would get ratings. I am confused, though… wasn’t 2008 The Most Important Election in History? Either way, the political sheeple are eating it up like Joey Chesnutt scarfing wieners at a Nathan’s hot dog eating contest.

I know this because I used to be one of the political sheeple.

Here’s a news flash:

It doesn’t matter that Barack Obama won.

Does. Not. Matter. One. Bit.

The world will continue to revolve. People will still go to work, worry about the economy, raise a family, try to make ends meet, and continue to live. The only immediate impact of the Obama win is that a boatload of Republicans have retreated to lick their wounds and rail about electoral sabotage and dirty tricks.

Politics is a funny business. We have citizens who think it’s the greatest travesty ever visited on the country that George W. Bush was elected twice. And that if Al Gore or John Kerry had been elected, well, the country would have been that better off and everywhere you’d look, there’d be unicorns shitting gold bars in the streets, free for the taking.

We have citizens who think the same thing about Bill Clinton’s presidency. That if Bush the first had been reelected or Bob Dole had won in 1996, well it would all be good. No recessions, and all that money would trickle down to us poor folks. Voodoo economics, indeed.

Fact is, neither side is right, and neither side is wrong. We view these elections through the “what’s in it for me” lens. What about what’s in it for the country? Has any one of these cretins actually given a shit about the country as a whole? I think not. I hear Barack Obama talking about hope and change and peace and love and dope and god knows what else. I heard Mitt Romney yakking about how he knows how to run things and people need to get back to work and no more welfare and all that rot.

I call bovine scatology.

Lets look at facts. The country is falling apart. The infrastructure is crumbling. Everywhere you look, moral decay, overcrowded prisons, government and other groups monitoring what you do with your body and in your bedroom, schools focused on standardized test scores rather than making sure kids actually learn anything useful, zero tolerance, massive overspending on a broken educational system, unions bitching that they aren’t getting a big enough raise, an increasingly litigious society that thinks it has the constitutional right to be stupid and then has the chutzpah to think the smarter part of society owes it, skyrocketing health care costs and a shrinking middle class shouldering a larger and larger portion of the tax burden.

Where does it end?

Bad news, folks. It will only end when we stop the petty bickering and actually elect some folks who just want to go to Washington, do what they were elected to do, and get the hell out of there.

SPW has said that her political party hasn’t been invented yet. The Personal Responsibility Party. What a concept. Imagine someone shooting themselves in the hand with a nail gun and instead of suing Black & Decker, they say, “Whoops… My bad.” Don’t expect to be handsomely rewarded if you slip on your neighbor’s sidewalk… It’s icy, dumbass. Think maybe it might be a little slippery? Or did you not know that ice was slippery because it wasn’t on the standardized test? Maybe if people would man up and take some responsibility, it might be a different story.

Proud to be part of this 1%

I saw something on Facebook this morning where someone wrote, “Let the healing begin…” We shouldn’t need to be so divided that we need to heal over an election where the candidates are basically opposite sides of the same coin. I heard all sorts of Romney-ites saying that a vote for anyone other than Mittens was a vote for BHO. I disagree. It’s my vote and I voted for what I felt would best benefit the country. I was told that if I voted third-party, I was wasting my vote. Bull. I voted with my conscience.

It’s no secret I have no love for BHO. I think he’s a charlatan issuing empty promises, using one hand to distract the people while using the other to twist the public teat until it’s purple. It’s no secret I harbored similar feelings toward W, though not for the same reason. Each of them has sullied the office, and despite all that, I still respect the office, even if I have trouble respecting the officeholder.

So, you probably wonder what I would do if it were up to me to fix. Here’s my summation of my ideas and the best ideas I’ve seen in social media:

  • Election season would be six months. No more, no less.’
  • Election financing would be provided on an equal basis to each candidate. NO PRIVATE DONATIONS. There would also be a spending cap set by law.
  • All primary elections would take place on the same day.
  • All general elections would take place on the same day. No early voting. Polls would be open longer hours to serve the voters.
  • News outlets would be prohibited BY LAW from predicting winners. This practice can have an effect on an election and discourage West Coast voters from going to the poll if it seems one candidate has a large lead.
  • Instead of campaign advertising, each candidate would be given the opportunity to provide a position statement on a given that would be read, verbatim, by a news anchor, without commentary.
  • One debate each month.

Is it ever going to happen? Not as long as politicians are politicians, but imagine a civilized campaign. And no phone calls from Chuck Norris, Clint Eastwood, Michelle Obama or anyone else. Blessed silence.

This is my last political post/rant for a while. I hope I am proven wrong and the next four years are prosperous for our nation.

I hope.

(the following post contains a rant with profanity… please proceed with caution)

When I see some kind of gaffe in someone’s writing, I often think, “Why didn’t the author think how that might be construed?”

Never thought it would happen to me.

I was viewing the blog stats, which I do periodically, and looked at what people are searching for that led them to my blog. Now, many of you have read my stories of Gratuitously Naked Guy and his lack of a towel. What I thought was a humorous anecdote, well, here’s the search listings:

Think I might need to refer less to GNG in the future.

Next topic is car dealer service departments…

No matter what you take your car in for, they always want to chisel a few more dollars out of you. For example, I took Mario the Super Honda into the local dealership for an oil change. They called and said they recommended a tire rotation and balancing. Now, I just had the tires rotated a month ago at the place I bought the tires, so I said, “That’s funny… I just had the tires rotated and balanced a month ago.”

Dead silence.

Then, “Well, they seem to have different tread depths.”

Me: “That’s funny… I bought all four tires at the same time.”

Them: “Oh. Well, your battery is getting weak.”

Me: “Oh, OK. I’ll install a new one.”

Them: “We can do that for you.”

Me: “I know, but I can do it, too.”

Sigh.

I get the wanting to be profitable, but times are tough out there. If I can buy a battery for $100 and put it in myself, why should I pay them $300 to install it? They get $95/hour to work on your car. I don’t make $95/hour. Most people don’t. These are the same people who tell me the car needs a full alignment. Every time. They usually back off when I point out that they did a full alignment in May when I had it inspected.

(Image courtesy of world-crisis.net)

Finally, election phone calls. I understand the need to get out and vote. It’s an essential part of the process. I don’t understand the need for the artillery barrage of robo-calls from celebrity endorsers. I was waiting for Honey Boo-Boo to call and tell me to vote for whoever she’s endorsing. I get the newspaper endorsements… I get party and organized labor endorsements. I don’t get why we care who (insert self-important celebrity here) endorses. I especially get irked when I see it reported as mainstream news… I mean when the CNN talking head trumpets that “Kim Kardashian supports Obama!”, I wonder about that, since Kim probably can’t spell Obama in the first place. Have we become so obsessed with celebrity in this country that it really matters? I actually think that country singer Brad Paisley said it best in his song “Celebrity”:

 

Someday I’m gonna be famous. Do I have talents? Well, no. These days you don’t really need it, thanks to reality shows.

OK… so there you have it. I’ll leave you with my final words. Get out and vote today. If you are of legal age and citizenship status, that is. Unless you’re in Chicago, in which case, vote as many times as you can. I’m sure my guy’s not going to win, but I’ll be damned if I’ll waste my vote on the current occupant or on Mittens. One has promised the world and failed to deliver (and yes, I know he’s only one guy and he can’t control everything, but it would be nice if he’d man up and admit he screwed the pooch) and the other, well, about the best thing you can say is that he’s not the current occupant. Both of them ran billion dollar campaigns. That’s billion. With a “B”. Where’d they get that much scratch? The short answer is from the rich people who both candidates claim to detest. From Wall Street. From the lawyers and lobbyists and influence peddlers. From the celebrities.

Now imagine, if instead of spending beaucoup cash to buy influence, they donated the money to people who could actually use it. Those affected by Sandy or other natural disasters. You know, people actually helping people instead of  funneling the money through the most inefficient bureaucracy in human history with a lot of it being diverted to line the pockets of the fat cats. The priorities in this country are so fucked up it’s astounding. Instead of The Donald promising $5 million to whatever charity, how about he sends one of his people to the local Home Depot, buys a shitload of gift cards, and passes them out to people who need a hand… who have lost everything? I guess if that was done, it couldn’t be claimed as a tax deduction. What a joke.

“Brian,” you say, “you’re living in a fantasy world. You’re wishing for a Utopia.”

Naaah. Maybe a country less divided. Maybe a cultural shift to where we can respect one another’s opinion without taking it as a personal insult if someone else disagrees with you. Although the media wants us to be at each other’s throats and offended by everything so they have something to report, we still have a RIGHT to OUR OWN OPINIONS! I might not (and probably won’t) agree with what Barbra Streisand or Rush Limbaugh have to say, but I will defend the right to say whatever drivel they can dream up.

OK… rant over. Now get out and vote! You still have 30 minutes on the east coast.

I just reread what I posted earlier and I was struck by how down it seemed. It wasn’t meant to be bitter… I don’t actually know what I was trying to get across, other than it’s NOT futile. It’s a struggle, but most things are.

All in all, not a bad day

So, I went to the gym this morning/afternoon. I wanted to top my previous time best on the treadmill. I started out at around 2.7 miles per hour… faster than my usual walk. Upped it to 2.9 about 7 minutes in, then upped it again to 3.2. It was a good workout… I managed to make it 46 minutes… I’m catching up to my friend Glenn. He’s really been an inspiration to get in some treadmill work. It hurts… I won’t lie, but the pain fades and my ankles will feel better. In fact, the more weight I lose, the better it’s going to be on my joints. I’ve noticed vast improvements in my cardiovascular health… I can walk at a brisk clip, kind of uphill for over two miles and only get to a 120 heartbeat? Wow… whoda thunk?

My biggest gym beefs allude to some people who Supportive Partner Woman (certifiable gym rat-to-be!) has mentioned in the past. Those she refers to as American Stick Insects. These would be the ulta-fit women who show up and make the StairMaster their figurative bitch clad only in spandex shorts, a sports bra and half gloves. I don’t mind that somebody’s fit… I wish I was at the point I could tame the evil beast that is the StairMaster, but what I do mind is that after sweating like the Nototious B.I.G. after he ate a gallon of hot sauce, said Stick Insect did not wipe down the machine, then went to the elliptical and proceeded to pull the same bush league act.

The other people I have issues with are the late 40’s early 50’s midlife crisis guys who walk around like frat boys and act like frat boys, too. SPW (observer of people acting like chumps!) reported seeing the biggest douchenozzle of them all of them go walking out of the gym doing the George Jefferson walk while wearing wraparound shades and his garish yellow shirt. He was probably heading out to his midlife crisis car.

These guys just spend the entire time they are there just trying to show off… it’s kind of, well, immature. Usually I want to gripe about these kids today, but with the exception of some chatty teenage girls who like to text on the elliptical, most of them show up, are serious about the workout, and don’t clown around too much.

Anyways, it’s off to another exciting night at the office. Once again, I apologize for the tone of the earlier post. Anything that makes me healthier is not futile. I know I’m going to have down days, but just have to move on.