Vacation weekend.

I’m taking some time off from the gym (one whole extra day, so far) because I may have overdone it last week. Or I’m being lazy. Or I’m really, really, in need of a vacation.

I did spend most of the day trying to hang some curtains. It meant taking down the old curtains, washing them, taking down the old hardware, and then putting up the new hardware and the outdated but hopefully clean curtains. There was 41 years of dust on the curtains, much of it from when my dad smoked and my mom burned incense for the Buddhist shrine we have. After all the trouble, I was almost finished putting it all together when I noticed I BOUGHT THE WRONG CURTAIN ROD. I wanted one with the pull string that opened and closed the curtains, but I got one that just sat there. And it didn’t take rings or slides to let the curtains open and close at all. The goddamn worthless things are the type that make you tie up the curtains on the sides of the window with some sort of rope. Or maybe you’re supposed to get your butler to do it. I mean, honestly, where the hell am I going to come up with a butler?

So, tomorrow, back to the drawing board. At least I got the replacement parts for my grandmother’s old barber clippers and I got it mostly working again. That’s something, anyway.

Still feel like I got run over by a truck.

Perhaps this is another one of the joys of getting older. Going to the gym makes you feel like you got beat up in a bumfight or something. Or maybe a car wreck. Though the few times I’ve been in a car wreck I didn’t feel so bad.

Really, I have very little to add tonight. I still need to juggle my bank accounts and bleed away the money I have socked away for my never-arriving Toyota Prius I ordered back in February. Or maybe I should just say I suggested to the dealer that I have A BIG PILE OF MONEY set aside for a Prius and they should sell it to me for cheap. I suppose it doesn’t work that way. I should just buy a jpeg of it and use it as a screensaver while I drive my broken Civic back and forth and be happy with my lot in life. But lately I’ve been looking in the mirror and wondering why that old guy looking at me is looking so skinny and haggard. I think I need more sleep and a cheeseburger. Probably in that order.

I suppose it wasn’t smart to do as many burpees as I did this week. Tuesday I did them instead of pushups or squat thrusts and since I missed a couple of birthday burpee chances I did 92 (28 for Megan, 32 for Michelle, 32 for Galen, and my math is probably off). Wednesday there were 25 in the workout and I added a few to make it a around 47 because, well, I figured if I could do 92 on Tuesday I could do 47 on Wednesday. Thursday morning I felt like someone stabbed me between my shoulders. Good thing Friday is my day away from the gym.

Still just falling apart.

For some reason, my left index finger was numb this morning and my stomach felt like I’d eaten cement for breakfast. I’m just falling apart. I was also incredibly tired after work and considered going to sleep after I got home at 6PM, but I still went to the gym. There were times when I’d stare at a weight, for example, trying to get it to move on its own, but I still didn’t quite wuss out on anything. Even though I felt like I might see my lunch, or what those rocks in my stomach from earlier in the day looked like.

I told myself I’d get to sleep early, but here it is late. And I’m staring at my VISA bill, wondering what I’ve done to myself. That’ll help my sleep for sure.

Food hangover.

I’ve had a headache all weekend, but I think that’s really more to do with sinus problems. I’ll spare you the gory details, but I’ve heard from others (including my sister’s running group) that I’m not the only one with sinus issues right now. I’ve been using a Neti pot and my head still hurts. I might just blame it on hay fever season.

Friday night my buddy Il and I went to the new remodeled Ringside for my birthday dinner. We were almost 40 days late, but that’s just sort of how we roll. I’ve had a food hangover ever since. I feel bloated. I suppose when two guys spend $400 on dinner, a food hangover is expected. Ringside hasn’t changed that much from what a diner can see. There’s another room in the back and four more seats in the bar. But it’s brighter, making it seem more open, and there were extensive improvements in the wine cellar, meat locker, and kitchen. The food is still excellent and so was the service.

Today I spent much of the day at a baby shower. My friend (a super Linux geek) is starting a new job. He and his wife went to Australia before moving to Canada. They’re having a baby soon, plus she got her US citizenship. Way to pile on the accomplishments to make guys like me feel inadequate! But congratulations to them for all they’re doing.

I am older and more boring.

I have nothing to say lately except my job is busy busy busy. I try not to say too much because it’s not like I hide who I am or where I work. It’s probably pretty easy to figure who I’m talking about if I were to say anything. And other than that, I go to the gym, and I watch Jay the Contractor work. That’s about it.

This year my birthday made me feel especially old and I figure that’s probably about it for most of the things I should have done in my 30’s. I’m way past the late cutoff for things like having a family or getting married. I just have to be that old cranky guy who lives on the block. A reminder, today, was when I did birthday burpees for someone who is the same age. I’m pretty tired anyway from what we did at the gym yesterday, had meetings all through lunch which meant I only ate a “Builder Bar” out of the vending machine because the cafeteria was closed, and was pretty beat from today’s workout as well. So why did I do 47 extra burpees? Especially since after 15 I took a break and realized I still had THIRTY-TWO to go. Honestly, I kind of feel like I got hit by a truck.

My 25th college reunion is coming up and a few of us are going, organized via Facebook. it’s TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS A NIGHT to stay in Cambridge, but I think I’m finally over being mad about going to MIT. I mean, there’s almost nowhere else a nerd like me could have gone, but that place was brutal. I still wish I could have gone to Stanford. Guys who transferred there said it was a cakewalk compared to MIT. I’m sure it’s still hard, but come on, there are real people who go there, not just supernerds. They even have a football team that WINS GAMES. And I hear Cambridge is no longer a poster child for urban blight and has turned into a gentrified yuppie town. I saw evidence for that when I was there five years ago. We’ll see in a couple of weeks!

Busy busy busy busy.

My mom came back from Japan today and the kitchen is still torn apart so I figured it was a good time to skip going to the gym and take her out to dinner. It’s nice living in a neighborhood with lots of choices, even a barbecue restaurant like Slabtown Ribs and BBQ. It’s probably not the best place to go every other week, but it is tasty.

I just sent 12 work emails from 9:30PM on and they weren’t all short messages. Work is still pretty busy. How did I get myself into this? Stupid need for health insurance.

As the list gets shorter, the tasks get harder.

Turns out my mom isn’t coming back until Tuesday. The kitchen still won’t be finished by then so I’m not sure what difference it really makes.

We had this awful shelving unit with aluminum rails and supports and pressboard shelves that I’ve decided isn’t going back into the kitchen. That also means that we need a table for the telephone. I’m not a big furniture shopper and it’s been a bit of a headache. I started last night on Google and went to three antique stores, Portland Furnishings, Hip, Dania, and finally the Joinery. All I wanted was a narrow table and I finally found what I need is called a “console” or “entry table”. I found NOTHING on Google, Ikea’s web site, Dania’s web site, or Crate and Barrel’s web site. I found nothing at the antique stores. The last three places had something that would be almost OK.

The one at Hip was a perfect size, but had a glass top. GLASS TOP. I’m going to put something through a glass top, I’m sure. Plus, it’s too modern for me.

There was an interesting leaning desk at Dania, but it didn’t mount to the wall at all. I’m sure it would come tumbling down at some point.

So finally I went to the Joinery. I haven’t been there for ten years, I think, because everything there is BEAUTIFUL, hand made, and EXPENSIVE. The first three tables they showed me were almost perfect, but cost $1800 – $2200. The one I finally bought was a Shaker table made of cherry and is going to make the rest of the kitchen look like absolute crap.

They had a nice bed frame I wanted for $3000, and a nice dresser I wanted for $5000. I think the custom kitchen table will be about $3000 and the chairs are about $700 each. Now I see why I either need to a raise and a promotion or to change my tastes back to Ikea’s pressboard furniture.

I’ve got a list of demands

Today was a friend’s 50th birthday and he usually keeps that sort of thing quiet. I call him on his birthday every year, though. Who else is going to do it? I’ll buy him breakfast tomorrow (today).

I had what I thought was a huge list of errands today and I didn’t finish them. I never do, really. But I did finish most of them, even with my poor start. I usually mop the gym floor but when new mop heads can leave a lot of lint on the rough rubber surface. Instead of mopping, I vacuumed. It can take me 45 minutes to mop the floor if there’s a lot of equipment out of place, but vacuuming took me an hour and a half. I almost missed one of the time-constrained things on my list: buying more cardboard boxes, but I made it with half-an-hour to spare.

I got lunch and when I got home my next door neighbor needed help with his garage door. Fortunately I had the wire strippers, crimps, crimp tools, and staple gun necessary to fix it all. After that, it was list time. I should have been like my brother-in-law and put “eat lunch” and “shower” on the list so I could cross them off.

The big item on the list was the only non-house-maintenance chore that my mom wanted me to do while she was gone: washing her car. She parks it in the driveway where it gets little winter sun, and it grows algae in the winter. The algae dies and turns black. I went to the “Washman” carwash and got the $49 package with extra external cleaning. It takes an hour, but my neighbor was there doing the same thing so we sat and chatted and the time passed pretty quickly.

Then it was time for easier items like “laundry”. My sister added “buy a new kitchen table” to the list. I’m spending a lot more than I’m making lately. Stupid renovations. Well, that goes on tomorrow’s list which, by this time, is today’s list. I better hit the hay.

Lovely 50-50

I’ve been told by several people that the Lovely 50-50 is their favorite pizza in Portland. I can see that. It was really good as was the huckleberry ice cream I had for dessert. I would put it above Apizza Scholls, where they’re too popular and go out of their way to let you know how special they are even though I think the pizza at Apizza Scholls is just a little tastier. But I’m not sure if I put it over Pizzicato because the pizza is a bit too fancy for me. I had a pizza with wild nettles with taleggio & salumi pancetta and I had to ask what each one of those ingredients was. The cheese was a bit too salty for me but the nettles tasted like nori. I tried my a bit of my friend’s margherita but the best was an asparagus and something-or-another-I-never-heard-of-before. I also liked the morel pizza. But really, I don’t like to think that hard when I’m hungry.

I suppose what I’m saying is that the reason I like Pizzicato is that I’m simple-minded and I recognize everything on the menu. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t go back to Lovely 50 50 the next chance I get. It’s close and it’s very tasty.

So busy and so behind.

Yesterday I skipped the gym because of a continuing stomach ache and worked on the house. Or so I thought. I’m not really sure what I did. I do believe I should be working on the wiring right now but my drill batteries were out of juice and I’m tired and busy at work. I need to get some sleep.

Oh, and genius probably figured out that the multivitamins he quit taking in the past were causing his stomach aches.

So in summary, have to wire the house. Don’t know when. Maybe Jay the Contractor will have to do it.

More tired than I thought, I think.

I spent half the day yesterday finishing up the demolition of the walls, in a room sealed off with plastic. I ddn’t think I was that tired, but after going out to dinner (and having three beers) I came home and passed out on the floor. I woke up four hours later at 1AM and finally put the sheets on the bed and went to sleep. I didn’t get up until 8AM.

So what does this mean? Not a whole lot. My stomach has hurt all day (hooray for that) and I’ve done some more cleaning on the room. The problem is that there’s a lot of airborne dust and mopping every few hours still shows a lot of crap on the floor. I did finish my laundry and now that it’s time for bed I realized that I have to rewire the room. Double hooray. Time to obsess about proper outlet placement.