I hurt my back again.

I’m not sure what it was, but it’s been coming all week. After going to the gym, I’d feel a sharp twinge in my back, the same sharp pain that laid me up before, but it would go away quickly. Today, however, after warming up and deadlifting we were supposed to do 3 rounds of 2 laps around the block, 5 pistol squats each leg, and 20 ball slams. On my second round I felt the sharp pain in my back and it wasn’t going away. It wasn’t intense enough to make me have to stop, but I wasn’t going to push it. I figure this means I get to take tomorrow off as well. Even after four Advil, I still feel things in my back. There’s no need to be laid up for several weeks again.

I was awfully tired at work today, so I might not be on my “A” game. I drank twice as much coffee as I usually do (four cups instead of my usual two) and I was still falling asleep. Unless they changed all the coffee to decaf (which would stifle productivity) I’m thinking that the week is really catching up to me.

Well, Jay the Contractor pointed out that he shouldn’t get rid of all the insulation between my bedroom floor and the kitchen below because it cuts down on noise transfer. So one of the big reasons I had for wanting the floor replaced was nullified. The new floor is partially in and it actually seems greatly improved. They glued it and nailed it with ring-shank nails and it’s a lot stiffer and sturdier. And even more important, the contractors found out that the clowns who did the second-story addition forgot to nail any of the the floor joists to the wall. ANY OF THEM. Jason fixed it, so yet another reason that I’m glad I have him on my side, even though I probably need a lot more money to finish all the repairs.

In any case, I won’t be at the gym tomorrow and will have more time than I thought I would so I’ll probably doing something really exciting: my taxes. I love life.

Eat this, it’s good for you.

I’m not sure my body likes anything that’s good for me. Fresh fruit and vegetables mess with my digestive system. I seem to need a modicum of grease in my diet and I may just have to resort to eating some fried chicken tomorrow. Tonight my mom made me eat some liquid tofu. Last time I had it I got heartburn and I wasn’t sure what it was that did that to me. I’m narrowing it down, however, and liquid tofu is high on my list.

I have envelopes piled on my desk and I often use them to take weird notes. I have no idea why there are phone numbers on my health insurance, nor whose phone numbers they are. Since the only phone calls I can remember getting lately are from bill collectors looking for someone else, I can’t believe the numbers are important. Perhaps they’re a winning lottery number or the password for my ever-dwindling retirement account. Who knows? I very much doubt that it’s anything interesting, though.

Kindle 2 envy.

My sister just got her Kindle 2 from Amazon and I had to call to ask how it was. She’s been lording it over me that she had one on order and now she has it. I’m pretty jealous and I have dumb reasons on why I want one. I’ve read books on computer in the past, including almost ruining my eyes reading Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander on a Toshiba Dynabook with a failing backlight. She was an online friend and she sent me her book on floppy disks. But that’s not a big reason; I don’t need to make my eyes any worse. But I do have troubles reading books because I don’t break the spine on books and I often hold them with my left hand. My hand cramps up and makes it difficult to keep reading. I figure the Kindle 2 might help. It’s really just a case of gadget lust.

I felt a lot better at the gym today, though it’s probably psychological and not physiological. Though I agree with Megan that I’m getting old, I’m going to keep pretending that I’m not. But I do keep seeing pictures of myself and wonder who the old guy came from.

Another thing to give up.

I guess I’m a quitter. I gave up bicycling cold turkey to start running, and I gave up running when I started back to work and decided that going to the gym would be better time-wise. And today, coincidentally, I’ve read two articles that tell me that I should seriously think about knocking off the booze. Shirt Off John at the gym took some notes about drinking after going down to Gym Jones in Salt Lake City that kind of point out that drinking might be why my energy is down this week. The biochemistry is what I’m interested in (as an organic chemist). The other article I saw was from the BBC and was mainly talking about women drinking alcohol and cancer, and how one drink a day raised all types of cancer rates in women by 6%, but really who needs that whether they’re male or female?

Great. Now I have to find another hobby.

I was also thinking I’m 0 for 2 on this monthly date thing, and the real reason I now have to want to go on a date is to go to some of the restaurants I keep hearing about. I can’t keep going with Il all the time. Then again, if I don’t go I won’t drink or overeat and I’ll save some money. All my spare money is going to Jay the Contractor anyway.

My strength ebbs and flows.

Or is that waxes and wanes? In any case, I think I’m on a downhill slide for energy at the gym, but I was sick last week (twice in fact) so I’m not surprised. I was even feeling a little slowed down today, which is no surprise. I should probably get more sleep.

Other than that, it’s Monday. I was looking at age appropriate singles ads the other day and I noticed every single one of the women looked pissed off. No wonder I look at the women who are too young for me. I’m pretty sure I’m going to disappoint someone so I’m not all that sure I want to meet someone who is pre-disappointed.

The closet is empty.

I found a lot of weird things in the closet, including a box of mini-liquors today, but the weirdest thing I found was a banner my grandparents sent when I was born. It’s SIX METERS tall!


It’s also custom dyed and we thought about putting it in the Goodwill pile until we unfurled it. I gave up a lot of things with strong memories attached to them including clothing from VICA where I actually won first place in the US for a competition in Industrial Electronics. There’s no such thing as the Vocational Industrial Clubs of America any more and I should probably have something to remind me of times when I was actually competing on the world stage, even when it was for something as silly as soldering parts together. But really, a red blazer with a big VICA patch on it? How about just a picture of me with my big 80’s hair wearing the jacket?

Other than that, I made a trip to Goodwill to drop of nine boxes of closet stuff and to Peets to feed my caffeine addiction and finished yet another mystery novel. I suppose that just means I need to get out more.

Coming out of the closet.

The carpet is finally supposed to come in, so they tore out the old nasty carpet out of my old bedroom. The missed the closet, however, because it was still full of stuff. My old room was partly my dad’s storeroom and when I moved back I had to clear out a lot of cardboard boxes to get in. It was pretty cramped and it took a kind of dance to get to my closet, so I only went in there if I needed to get my wedding & funeral suit.

Of course, it was a large closet filled with all sorts of weird things. I started pitching out clothes to take to Goodwill and half of it was 20 pairs of slacks that I can’t get my big ass into, and 20 dress shirts. I filled three full boxes of empty clothes hangers. The suit my mom made when she got married was in was there. There’s also some nice suits of mine that I should try to give away before I just give them to Goodwill. My dad bought them for me when I was in my 20’s and much smaller.

I also threw out my dad’s old model airplanes and I hope I don’t have another dream where he comes back looking for them. I suppose my sister is right, he didn’t seem to care about them much when he was alive, so why would he care about them now? He liked putting plastic models together and painting them but after they’re together they just kind of took up space.

This is the old person’s blog where I talk about my ailments.

My lumbago!

So while my nose is clearing steadily, I somehow had a weird stomachache last night that was probably caused by taking vitamins, Advil, and Claritin at nearly the same time. Or it could be something different, because I ended up with some intestinal upset that my sister said she also had this week. There’s all sorts of things going around, so I’m not surprised. This all hit this afternoon and wasn’t clearing up when I was supposed to be at the gym deadlifting. I didn’t think this particular brand of intestinal discomfort would mix well with that sort of weightlifting.

In my weakened state (again) I was able to finally finish Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo. I’ve decided I liked it, but it was long and not nearly as amusing as his earlier books. I suppose Straight Man was kind of meandering a bit as well, but not to the extent of this book. Now I can get back to reading about awful murderers and the cops who catch them. I have at least three books my sister lent me and it’s time to get back at them if, of course, I don’t get stuck catching up on TV shows from the past week. Apparently I still need a life.

My car is back!

I’ve been asking everyone the same question, “Guess how much it cost me for my repairs?” The answer is $17.95, because I had my windshield wipers replaced as well. I guess it was all covered by warranty. It’s nice to have my car back. Commuting by light rail is much more environmentally friendly, but in the time it takes me to walk to the light rail I’m already at work. The light rail and shuttle bus add another hour to my commute each way. I’m paying for that 1-2 hours back each day, even though sitting on the train is more relaxing. I did notice that the plastic train seats cut off the circulation to my ass.

Today’s workout at the gym was a taxing cardio torture. Fifteen minutes of running around the building twice and 10 pullups to see how many rounds you can do. I did five rounds plus one extra lap and was cursing whoever came up with this idea the whole time I did it. Ah, well, this is what I pay for and it’s good for me, right? Even though my mucus was the consistency of rubber cement and wouldn’t leave my sinuses.

Health better, life still meh.

I was tired at the gym today, but it was a hard workout. I think I ended up going through the warmup too quickly because I didn’t see many other people finish it and run around the building twice. That’s OK, I needed to try to sweat out whatever I had left from my head cold. What I did reconfirm is that I can’t count worth beans when I’m working out. This happened to me during Fight Gone Bad, too. I swear I did a lot less than my partner counted, but I was tired and not thinking clearly. At least today and Monday I did extra to make sure I was at least where I thought I was when I lost count.

I felt a lot better today and slightly less cranky, which is a good thing because Honda of Hillsboro was still trying to annoy me. I finally got an appointment for them to look at my “Check Engine Light” and when I pulled in they kind of rolled their eyes. Then they made me wait for an hour for a ride. They called a couple of hours later and told me that I needed a software update and my fuel/air sensor was bad; they didn’t have a replacement and it would take a day to get it. So I asked if I could pick the car up and drive it until they got the part and they told me the car shouldn’t be driven with a bad fuel/air sensor. These are the same clowns who told me to KEEP DRIVING THE CAR.

So here I am with no car, and no keys. I thought this would be a short service and they’d have the car back to me in a couple of hours so I gave them my whole key ring. This also means that I get to take the light rail to work tomorrow. Instead of a half-hour drive, I’m going to walk half-an-hour to the Max, and then ride for 45 minutes to the closest station, and wait probably fifteen minutes for a shuttle, and then take a 10 minute ride to work. Just thinking about it cheers me up.

No wonder it’s illegal.

I wonder how much meth is made from one 30mg tablet of Sudafed. According to the newspaper, which is completely suspect, most meth is trucked in from Mexico, but the Oregon State Legislature was afraid enough of OTC Sudafed to make it a prescription drug. I can’t believe a 24-blister pack of the Sudafed is going to make any significant amount of methamphetamine. But what do I know?

I had to leave work early today because of my worsening head cold. I tried taking a Claritin earlier, but that didn’t do all that much. I just drove home 1 1/2 hours early and went to bed before dinner. So imagine I had some Sudafed squirreled away, from long ago, and I took the standard dose (60mg) before dinner. It would have cleared my head and made me feel much better, but also would have made me much crankier as well. And since my current job involves talking to outside customers, my current “surly” demeanor would probably be downgraded to “outright hostile.” I’m not taking the stuff (assuming I have it) while I’m working.

So there you have it: Head Cold 1, Me 0.

Stupid cold.

Sometimes it’s hard for me to decide whether to go to the gym or not and even after I go it’s hard for me to judge whether it was a good idea. Today I finished the workout with a fair time and felt at times where I was just about to need to take a nap to finish the workout. But I never did get there, so I figure I’m not THAT sick. Just very close. And I’d probably better a lot quicker if I’d just sleep more. I’m probably going to be dragging around work tomorrow but that’s the nature of work and life, isn’t it?

I slept in this morning but kept waking up because my nose was stuffed up. I kept dreaming about my dad. He was sad that I had cut down his trees, and he wanted to see the model ships he had built but I’d thrown them away. I kind of like having feverish dreams because they’re novel, but these guilty dreams aren’t what I need. At least he seemed in good spirits.