Sunday, May 27, 2007

Here comes the sun, do do do doo

I actually ventured outside this morning. Into our back yard, which has been untouched by human hands for quite some time.

Our house was built in the early 80's, which means that 27 or so years have gone by, and therefore we have some big-ass trees out there. Also, it's a good-sized yard. Not that we ever go out in it.

It pains me to admit this, but our doggie sanitation is not the best.

I finally couldn't stand it anymore and decided to get to work this morning. I grabbed the scooper, and took about 30 minutes to get things back to a point where they were at least livable. Then I grabbed the loppers and a hedge trimmer, and went a little nuts. There are two enormous piles of brush obscuring our entire back lawn, but I need to let them dry out so they can be shredded into mulch.

I also pulled a bunch of weeds and dug up two dead stumps and ripped out a bunch of seedlings.

Bear, our big dumb dog, is part Chow, which means he sheds a serious undercoat every year. I swept off the patio, and ended up with a pile of fuzz that was the size of a sheep.

Then since the patio was clean, I decided to break up the spider convention that has been congregating on the stucco siding of our house.

The upshot is, I spent 4 hours outside, and I have sort of reclaimed the back yard.
Woohoo! I am proud. Amd it counts as exercise, right?

Weekend Wrap-Up #6

Well, it was bound to happen eventually!

I have been trying a "new thing".

I'm not going to draw too many conclusions, but on paper, this week looks like crap.

I have gained 4 lbs.

Before I started to freak out, I remembered this:

I did have one bad day of eating, but I know that there is no logical reason for a 4 lb. weight gain. The bad eating wasn't up to "ate an entire cheesecake" levels.

Maybe it has to do with the fact that Trader Joe's is out of my fave high fiber cereal? We'll see if we can't eradicate that problem this week.

Add to that fact that I have been taking meds that seriously mess with my hormones.

Also, I am raring to go back to the gym, but online research and pleas from The Man make me think that I should lie low this past week and the coming week. I do have some yoga DVD's, and I plan to be doing a lot of work around the house and walking on the treadmill. So all is not lost, although I do feel like a slacker. I will still be as motivated (for better or worse) in a week or so.

Still, four pounds! Aiiigh! OK, girl, shake it off. Your jeans still fit just as loosely as they did last week.

Add to that, I finally met up with an old friend for lunch. She has lost 60 lbs, and is a shadow of her former self. (And she didn't warn me before we met up, either!)

She looks great, and she is going through a divorce, so I find it difficult to be resentful. Plus, I can't be too bitter, because she is taking diet pills, which I know works for me, because of the wanting to have a baby thing, and also because I have tried them, and they do work, but they also make me a little insane.

Still it made it a little easier to decline the buttermilk spice muffin from Mimi's the other day.

That's right, I turned down a muffin and gained 4 lbs. Hopefully I'll have better karma next week!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Eh.

This has been a weird week. A lot of things are hanging in the balance, mostly stuff having to do with the Road To Potential Parenthood. And let's face it, I wouldn't inflict discussions about my ovaries on either one of you!

(That's right- I actually do care.)

So here's the generalized update- this week and next are centered on a few strictly timed doctor's appointments, and sometime over the weekend I get to give myself a shot in the abdomen.

I am vascillating between staying away from whiskey cold turkey, or just getting wasted and giving myself the shot.

Hey! Cold Turkey vs. Wild Turkey! It's a toss-up.

It (the shot) supposedy is easy, but I am freaking out about it. And so is my mom.

"You have to do it yourself?!!!"

"Yeah. I'll manage."

"Maybe you could take it to the ER and explain, and they could do it for you."

"They are going to be way too worried about gunshot victims to give me a shot, Mom. Plus, I don't think ovulation counts as an emergency."

"What about our next door neighbor...the one who stitched up your leg?"

"He's a pediatrician. I was ten!"

"But he knows how to give shots! He could do it!"

"I am NOT going over there with a syringe and requesting that the poor man give me a shot in the abdomen!"

With my luck, Mom called him as soon as I left, explained everything, and asked him to show up at my house at 9:30 PM on Sunday night.

Don't think that she wouldn't. This is a woman who wrote a letter to my doctor outlining all my "health issues" and sent it to my doctor a week in advance of my appointment. When I was 22.
__________________

Entertaining anecdote: I was at my dive bar over the weekend, and the bartender gave me his number and said he wants to go to sushi with my buddies and I.

He was doing that "leaning" thing at the time, so it could go either way. Or he could just be really friendly. Or he could be planning to ask us if we're about a size 14 and then drag us to his basement in order to skin us and make a suit to transform himself into a real woman.

I am not sure what to think, except that there are plenty of single, skinny girls who would be happy to accompany him to a Japanese restaurant. Why me? I don't think he appreciates my sparkling wit, such as it is. What gives, bartender?

The reason I think he may actually be a teensy bit interested: That same night, a guy seated two barstools away spotted my (prominently displayed) wedding ring.

"You're married!"

Since I hadn't talked or made eye contact with him, it took me a minute to figure out A. who he was talking to, and B. where this was going.

"Yes, I am married."

"Wow. Do you know, you're a total MILF?"

Classy!

For some ridiculous reason (OK, because I am a dork) I felt the need to explain that the first word in the acronym MILF is actually Mom, and since I am not a mom, I would have to be a WILF. The W could stand for Woman, or Wife, or Whatever.

(Jenna! Just shut up! Quit being an ass and arguing about acronyms! Oh shit, you just made eye contact!)

"Doesn't matter. You definitely are one."

I wish I could be, you know, offended. Instead, I am analyzing it, which is just lame. Hey, who knew? Maybe I was having a good boob day or something.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up #6

It's Sunday....and therefore, it is time for the weekend wrap-up.

Scheduling my gym appointments the night before has been invaluable. I am a lot less likely to skip out if I have reserved a block of time in advance. After the trial run this week, I think 2 days on, 1 day off, 2 days on, 2 days off as a schedule really works well for me.

It has been a fantastic week in terms of getting on track and just going for it. I made it to the gym 4 times this week, once for Zumba class, and the other three occasions I was giving Mr. Elliptical the workout of his life.

I am thinking that I need to come up with a more catchy moniker for poor Mr. Elliptical. We spend a lot of time together. Ed, maybe? I'll think about it. The Man actually refers to the gym as "your other boyfriend." So this would tie in nicely.

I was ellipticallating (or something) away the other day, blaring The Fratellis on my gigabeat, when a slim older lady stopped in front to me and made little bowing motions at me. When I yanked my earbuds out so I could hear her, she said, "I just wanted to tell you: I can't stop watching you. You're an inspiration! Have a great day!!!!"

OK, weird, but nice. Well meant. Right? I am trying to interpret it in a positive way, not in a "Congratulations, fat person, for getting up off the couch and ditching the ho-ho's!" kind of way.
I know. I am the only person alive who would put that kind of spin on it. I need to cut that out.

Weight-wise, I am down to where I was after the nasty barfing incident of a few weeks ago. But my body is in a much better place, I know that more of the weight is muscle than it was before. I can feel that my body is poised to gain more ground and lose more pounds. I do need to measure, because I know I have lost inches.

The best part is that I can see the difference, and so can other people, which is kind of hilarious. Evidently, it kind of snuck up on all of us. I got out of the car the other night, and my two buddies both said, "Whoa!!! HOW much weight have you lost?!!"

It's only 15 lbs. I keep telling myself that. It's not a lot of weight, and I have lost it pretty slowly. Most of the time, I can't even tell the difference. But evidently, other people can.

And actually, if I think about it, 15 lbs. is approximately 1/3 of the way to my first goal. I am 1/3 of the way closer to losing 45 lbs! It's pretty hard to believe.

Today is the first day that I noticed a real, visible, physical difference. I was wearing my babydoll pj's, and I realized that my legs looked a lot thinner. (Thanks, Ed!) So I decided to dig into the Drawer Of Shame.

The Drawer of Shame is a relic of yesteryear. It is a testament to my delisional consumer-driven folly.

Basically, Old Navy was having a great sale on shorts, and I bought FIVE pairs of them without trying them on, which is a mistake I will never make again. Because of course, when I did get home, I tried to put them on. And every last pair was low-rise, way too tight to button, and also had an inseam which just was not going to work, to put it politely.

I banished them to the Drawer Of Shame. I have hated my legs for the past two years anyway, so I didn't even think about them until today. I rescued them from the drawer with doubt written all over my face, and I tried them on.

And they fit!!!! THEY FIT!!!!!!

I am wearing the khaki pair right now. Yeeehaaaaa!

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Oh the Humanity

Weird, weird couple of days.

I haven't been posting, mainly because "I worked! And I went to the gym!" is kind of a yawner.

And then this afternoon I will be cleaning (More yawns.)

I have been going out with the girls for the past two nights, which has been entertaining. Since I am the old married lady of the three of us (BowGirl doesn't count) I am enjoying the opportunity to rest on my laurels and show 20 % less boob.

Things I have learned from being the married friend:

1. Being married? Not necessarily a deterrent.

Out of the last 5 men who have hit on me, when I dropped the bombshell that I was married, three of them said "Oh! Me too!"
Seriously. Like we had something amazing in common, like being obsessed with Scrabble or secretly watching Golden Girls re-runs.

2. The self-image of many men has no basis in reality.

The guy who is 60 if he's a day comes up to my friends and I.
"Well...you ladies must be a lot younger than me, but I thought I'd come and talk to you anyway!

We are polite girls. We introduced ourselves. Which is a mistake, because Jay who was wearing a stained day-glo orance t-shirt stretched revealingly over his beer gut, had an actual CANE that he kept making obscene motions with and had evidently never heard of the phrase, "Say it, don't spray it."

He lingered throughout the evening like a bad smell. Hey we talked to him...we must want him!

3. Male awkwardness? Strangely cute...at least, to me.
It's kind of an aphrodesiac to know that you're making some guy so nervous and jittery that he knocks his drink over when he is trying to convey to you exactly HOW cool his motorcycle is.

Of course, it also helps if the guy in question is cute. YMMV.

4. Other women glaring at you can be a good thing.

On one hand, it makes you really uncomfortable. On the other hand, since you haven't committed any scorching faux-pas, it must be because you look really hot and they feel threatened.

At least, that's what I tell myself.


5. If you head out to a dive, giving yourself a "bar name" makes the evening.

Seriously. Whenever Tiffany, Crystal, and Lula Mae get together, we are unstoppable.

Yeah...guess which one I am?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Zoom Zoom

I did wake up at 5 yesterday.

The fact that I am going to have to do it again kind of makes my brain squeak in terror, but I will, because the Zumba class? Most. Fun. Ever.

One of my favorite parts is that the instructor isn't skinny. Hooray!

I took the day off from the gym today- date night is tonight, and I also don't want to burn out. I am actually forcing myself to NOT go to the gym this morning, which feels kind of crazy.

In other news, my visit to the doctor yesterday went well. Scary meds should commence this evening. I am battening down the hatches for the inevitable weeping and crankiness that are soon to come.

I have already been a little....well, miffed. Probably because of sleep deprivation. I know that's a part of it- The Man doesn't come home until midnight, and I am up until at least one, and then getting up at 5 or 6 AM...well.

The other factor is of course, the computer games.

The Man has noticed my crankiness, and has been doing that man thing where he offers to help 2 seconds before I finish the thing I am doing.

Like, "Do you want help with dinner?" when I have already finished making spaghetti, sauce, squash, steamed broccoli, and am taking the garlic bread out from under the broiler. We like spaghetti, so I made a ton of it and also of the sides, so we could have it for lunches the rest of the week.

So last night I said, "You know what honey? I am exhausted, and I am going to bed early. Would you mind putting away the food? "

Sure, he said, no problem.

I just got up and looked in the fridge, and maybe I am overreacting, but I just want to cry.

Evidently he stayed up playing games long after I went to bed, and then just threw the food into the fridge as is. No Tupperware. No Saran Wrap. It's just thrown haphazardly into bowls or left naked on the plate I served it on. My first impulse was to drag it out and then haphazardly repackage it...but why?

The (Huge! Expensive!)squash that I steamed for a week of lunches is ruined. Broccoli is completely out of the question. The spaghetti is a rubbery wad of gluey noodles, because he didn't add the sauce to it. The sauce may be salvageable, but I am wondering how long it sat out on the counter before he put it away, and of course, it has meat in it.

The garlic bread is conspicuously absent.

Part of me wants to go into the bedroom, wake him up, and scream at him.

I was so happy when he offered to help. I feel like this is a deliberate attempt to keep me from taking him up on his offers of help again. He didn't even bother to think about it or make an effort, and he's wasted a hour or so of MY time in the process, not to mention the extra cooking and shopping time I will have to put in to make up for it. So, that's wasted money, not only from buying the first round of food, but the second time around, as well.

And, did I mention, it was his day off yesterday? He did not do one damned thing. I came home from work and made dinner for him, when he sat on his butt playing games all day long.

Something's gotta give. What would you do in this situation??

Monday, May 14, 2007

Aha! Ahahahahaha!

I went to the gym this morning.

You can't see me, but I am totally doing the Cabbage Patch.

I got my picture taken. I did not die. Hopped onto my good old friend Mr. Elliptical, and we hobnobbed for about 35 minutes. ROCKED out to my new gigabeat Gym Playlist.

On the way out, I grabbed an aerobics class schedule. They've remodeled, and there are a bunch of new classes, including a brand new Zumba class.

It's only offered at 5:30 AM on Tuesdays. And before you laugh, I am SO THERE tomorrow.

Holy crap, I am using a lot of caps. Maybe it's because of the endorphins. Or...well, the apocalypse may be upon us.
(You'll know it's here when I add a stick figure floating Jesus to the back window of my car.)

I feel good. So good, in fact, that I went to WalMart (bear with me) and floated through it buying sports bras and water bottles and yoga pants. Oh, and some contact lens solution.
And (here is the important part) I WAS STILL IN A GOOD MOOD when I left. That totally never happens.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Reason 84 why I may be going to hell

I just saw this post over at SaraDru about those stick figures that people have on the back of their cars. You know the ones...three little girls, small medium, large, then a baby boy, complete with bunting, mom, dad...and occasionally the dog, cat, hedgehog, what have you.

I freaking hate those things. HATE them. And her post jogged my memory.

Secret Squirrel: What the hell is that on the back of the car?

JSQ: Someone has about 15 kids??!

We stare in disbelief.

Secret Squirrel: There's a figure floating in the middle.

JSQ: Oooookay people!

Secret Squirrel: Maybe it's Jesus!

We ponder this.

JSQ: It could be Jesus. I don't see a halo, though.

JSQ: Maybe they're a bigamist!

Secret Squirrel: I think it's Jesus. Seriously, it's floating in the middle of the back window above everyone's head. Wearing a robe.

JSQ: Are we really having this conversation?

JSQ: If you speed up, I can totally read the lettering.

JSQ: It's not Jesus. It says "Grandma".

Secret Squirrel: I don't believe this.

JSQ: Grandma is wearing a caftan.

Secret Squirrel: Why is Grandma floating in the air?

JSQ: There's not much room for her on the ground...that gang of stick figures takes up the whole bottom of the window.

JSQ: Maybe she's a hip grandma...she's crowd surfing.

Secret Squirrel: Hmmmm....or, Grandma could be dead.

JSQ: Dude, I hope not, because I think Grandma is driving that car.

Weekend Wrap-up #5

It's been several more weeks than that, but I have literally been dragging my ass.

Anyway- Happy Mother's Day!

After the exorcist-style puking extravaganza of a week or so ago, the dust cleared, and I had lost 15 lbs. It's taken awhile for the scale to equalize, but I am now at a solid 10 lb. loss, which evidently shows. My MIL and my own mom and dad commented on it. Of course, Dad also noticed that I was wearing black nailpolish. (I only got a raised eyebrow. Maybe he finally accepts that I know what I'm doing?)

My sister also demanded to know what the hell I was doing to my skin. After fighting with the largest organ of my body for approximately 15 years or so, my skin has finally aquiesced. I have found the magical cocktail of prescription meds and cleansers that it seems to be happy with.

Now I just need to take it to the next level. I have been flirting with exercise, but we're not even what I would call a booty-call basis with each other. And my eating has been nothing if not sporadically well-behaved. I start out angelic, make it through lunch...and it's all downhill from there. There have been lots of nights out with the girls, and inevitably, we end up in a booze-soaked haze- either at Denny's or chowing down on greasy bar appetizers. There's not enough Fiber-One in the world to undo that damage. So, it's back to the full-blown Beach starting tomorrow.

Mom announced today that she has kept me on her gym membership. I thought that she was going to remove me in March. So....back I go! I do have to take a picture for my updated ID. (Bleah! Bleah!)

I am scheduling my gym visits in my planner, just like my appointments for doctor visits and work. I know that as long as I can't commit to exercise, the weight is just not going to come off. (How many times have I said this? Please don't remind me!)

I need to be realistic about the fact that, as much as I HATE having my picture taken, the camera will not actually turn me into dust.

I am probably going to go to the doctor and start tinkering with baby-type-stuff this week, so it will be good to go on the offensive before I become a teary, pimply, bloated freak of nature. (note to self- get gym pic taken before then.)

I know evryone isn't comfy with all that info...please know that I don't expect you to comment, or to know the right thing to say (there really isn't one.) All I ask is, please think happy thoughts for me!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

H/R is not your friend.

I just read this soundbite at grrlgenius.com. (By the way, if you haven't checked out Cathryn yet...well, she is...a genius!)

H/R takes care of its own. They're not covering your ass, they're covering the company's ass. End of story.

At my last job, The Company Which Shall Not Be Named, I had a friend in the H/R department. She was a cool chick, nice, fun to hang out with. And MAN, could she dish up the hot goss. She knew who the married guys were cheating on their wives with. She knew that the girl in her own department who got fired? Got fired because she was skimming money out of the vending machines that was supposed to go to the "Employee Fun Fund". Oh, and for changing her status within the computer system, showing that she had paid for her portion of the health insurance. Which, in fact, she hadn't.

When our department went through a leadership change, things basically fell apart. The same source informed me that out new department head had worked for the company for over a decade, and she had previously been in charge of other departments. Both times, everything went to hell. Our department was the third try. Why, I don't know, but we all saw the writing on the wall. The new boss was a finger pointer and a blamer if things went wrong...but if we got accolades, they were all because of her.

First, the middle managers went to H/R. Then the graphic artists. Six months later, those middle managers and artists were gone, but the problem was still there, cheery, obtuse, and wearing really unflattering miniskirts. The men in our department were all favored over the women. She'd invite the guys into her office, shut the door, and joke and laugh with them. The women who were shut out would just sort of look at each other and shrug. Let's hear it for reverse sexism!

A few more months came by. My phone started ringing off the hook. I was getting requests from people I shouldn't even have been talking to...regional VP's, and their salespeople, who all wanted to know why they could never get my boss on the phone.

Things started heating up in the department. Mistakes were made on ad copy, and of course, the "minions" in my department were blamed- not the manager of the department, who had signed off on the proofs.

I went, not to H/R, but to my former boss, who was now working directly with the president of the company. He basically told me, bluntly, to get used to it, or get out.

I settled in for the long haul. I called H/R. Twice. And I never even got a call back.

Finally, someone upstairs noticed that our department had shrunk by 50 %. And they informed us that as soon as a suitable replacement was found, our fearless leader would be reassigned to her former duties. Which is a fancy way of saying "demoted."

Three months went by. Let me just say that having a boss who is irresponsible is bad enough. Having a boss who knows she's been demoted, and what else can they do to her? Oy vey.

At the six month mark, I finally bailed. My contacts inside the company tell me it took a year to replace her, and it's even worse now.

The company before that?

I worked there for two years without a blip. One morning, I was late to work. I had overslept! I made it in, and managed to pull it together and get things back in line before the start of the newscast.

My boss called me in, and I expected to be in trouble. And I acknowledge that I deserved to be written up.

I was suspended without pay for two weeks.

In contrast, a guy in the same situation? Was chronically late. I had never heard that he was ever penalized in any way for it, and in fact, he often wouldn't even make it in until after the news show had been airing for 30 minutes!

Talking to more women around the station, I came to realize that my boss (who once again, had been with the company for years) was notorious for penalizing women. Women also got slotted into more of the lower-paying jobs (like graphics) where men were encouraged to pursue camera work and jobs in the newsroom.

The worst part was, the bias was tacitly recognized among the higher-ups, but nobody ever did anything about it.

I thought about it. I had also been denied two week's vacation (for which I had the time on the books) to take my impending honeymoon. I had repeatedly asked for a full-time position, while working 50 hours a week, and was told that they could only guarantee me 39.5 hours, which didn't qualify me for full-time.

Yeah. I took my 2 weeks off, and found another job. I gave my notice the day I was supposed to be back at work.

When I went into H/R, the director hugged me and said, "I'm so sorry about this."

To this day, I wonder what exactly she meant by that.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Oh yeah...

The friendly teacher?

Still friendly. Still cute.

Not married. No kids.

How on earth am I going to hook him up with one of my single friends? Seriously, he's a cute, straight, smart, single, tall, funny, and responsible single guy.

In the words of Margaret Cho, he may possibly be a unicorn. Or a figment of my imagination. I should go look him up on snopes.com to see if he's an urban legend.

There must be something wrong with him. He is always wearing a baseball cap, so baldness isn't out of the question, but that's hardly a blip on the radar.

Maybe he eats puppies? Could he be a Scientologist?

I'm so confused.

I don't think he has a girlfriend. I base this on the fact that he has chocolate leftover from V-day "just lying around."

Well, and I asked him what he was doing last weekend and he said, "Oh....probably mowing the lawn."

Seriously....a man who is going to mow the lawn on his day off. That's a bankable commodity! (Well, around my house it is. )

I must ensnare him for someone deserving. Hmmmmm.......

I know. I suck.

There hasn't been a lot to talk about, which is why I have been gone. I know it's a big disuption in the lives of both my faithful readers!

Well, when I say there hasn't been a lot....there's a lot of stuff that is just sort of....you know, neither here nor there. There's a whole lot of "waiting and seeing" going on.

Truthfully, I am still not sure what to write about.

Oh, except that I am becoming the militant fat chick.

I have been going out a lot more with the girls, and none of us is precisely what you'd call thin. And I am really sick to death of the prevailing attitude among certain people that if you weigh more than a buck twenty-five, you shouldn't be allowed to show your face out on the streets of our fair (HA!) city. There have been a few incidents in the last few weeks, and I guess this one was just the proverbial back-breaking straw.

We were all hanging out, I was sitting on a barstool and my friend was swaying to the music they were playing in the bar. For the record, there was a lot of alcohol floating through our respective veins, but we were just talking and laughing with each other.

There was a mixed group of girls and guys in their early 20's seated in a booth a few feet away. And so I guess when one of the guys said, "Hey baby, shake it, don't break it!" and he and his buddy went into peals of derisive laughter, they didn't expect us to hear them.

I heard, and I was fueled on several shots of Bushmills whiskey. I hopped off my barstool, walked deliberately towards the booth, and flipped them off in an elaborate fashion, then walked back to the stool and re-parked.

I kept an eye on the booth for the rest of our (short) duration there. The three young women looked absolutely mortified. All conversation at their table ceased for the next 30 minutes.

The ironic thing is that the guy who made the comment was trying to talk to a girl who was beautiful, but not skinny either. After the incident, she wouldn't even make eye contact with him.

Was I wrong to even acknowledge it? I don't know. It certainly wasn't the most mature reaction. But I am sick to death of overlooking things. Plus, I am beginning to think that if jerks like this were called out on their behavior more often, they would learn how to behave themselves in public.