Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Like it or not

I was recently given a bag of walnuts by a guy who, um…raises walnuts? Maybe he’s a walnut farmer? Or would it be a picker or processor? What would you call that? A Walnuteer?

Anyway, I have this bag of walnuts I was given and initially, I was thinking “wtf am I going to do with a bag of walnuts? I hate walnuts!” because without a doubt, if I eat a brownie or cookie or pretty much anything baked with walnuts, I’ll spit it out.However, I remembered that I like them by themselves or on salads (especially candied) and in oatmeal (but not oatmeal cookies) so I gladly took this nutty gift. I'm even eating walnuts as I type this.

This makes no sense to me. If I like walnuts I should always like them, right?
Same thing goes for tomatoes though. By themselves or in a nice caprese salad or bruschetta, I could eat them all day long. Put em on a sammich or a cheeseburger and I won’t eat it. I shudder at the mere thought.

This has got to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever written about…

Now I’m wracking my brain trying to think of other stuff that I sometimes like but sometimes don’t,  but I can’t think of anything I’m really wish-washy on. Just stuff I either love or hate.

I like chocolate pretty much all the time.
Bacon is out, as my love for it knows no bounds. I would wear bacon underwear if I thought I could get out of the house without Tex chewing my pants off or causing a ruckus in the office because of the delicious aroma of bacon sizzling from my pants because it's next to my hot booty. (I may try this as a dating tactic, I'll keep you posted)
I love Top Ramen more than anything. It’s stupid how much I love it. I would eat it three times a day every day if I knew I wouldn’t die from it.  My next tattoo is going to be the Maruchan logo. I kid you not.

 I guess celery and carrots qualify, as I can’t stand either of them. Give me a celery stalk or a carrot stick and I’ll probably feed them to your dog. If you don’t have a dog, I’ll hide them in your underwear drawer (next to the bacon underwear?) for you to find a month later. But on the other hand, I can’t make chicken soup without them.

Liver is one of those things I can’t eat in any form.
I’m really not crazy about lemon pepper seasoning, but that’s not a food, so I don’t think it belongs in this blog post.
Rye bread bread is...actually, there are no words to describe my hatred for rye bread.
Years ago, oysters would have been on this list, but I like them now. Same goes for mussels. This I cannot explain.

Maybe if I make myself a walnut sammich on rye with carrots, celery, tomatoes and lemon pepper liver I’ll get past this.

This pointless drivel has been brought to you by the letter zzzzzzzzzzz and the number 7.


Monday, December 19, 2011

You wish your soup was this good!

So I decided that since I make pretty much the most amazing chicken soup in the history of the world, I would share it with the average layman folk (that’s you).
It’s so ridiculously simple I almost feel guilty that it’s so delicious, but if you follow my detailed, easy to read directions, you too can make soup better than anyone (except for me).

I’ll start with the chicken. You could season and roast your own whole chicken, but I prefer to just pick up one of the rotisserie chickens from Costco.
I eat about 1/3 of it and then use the rest for soup the next day. So basically, I'm getting three or more meals from a $5 Costco chicken.

Now this is the part where you need to read very carefully. Veering from any one of these steps will certainly result in failure, so don’t say I didn’t warn you if your soup tastes like crap. It's your fault, not mine.

Pop the chicken carcass (that sounds so gross) into a pot of water and boil on medium high for about 30-40 minutes.

Got that? Good, you’re well on your way.

Now for the list of ingredients-

  • 2-3 carrots -  I hate carrots, but you can’t make chicken soup without them, so put em in and shut up. Stupid carrots!
  • 3-4 celery stalks – I hate celery too, but you can’t make chicken soup without it, so get it in there.
  • 1 medium onion – Onions rule!
  • A bunch of mushrooms – I love mushrooms, so I put a lot in there. If you don’t like mushrooms, you’re an idiot and should just stop reading now. Really, they’re delicious and there’s something wrong with you.
  • Some wild rice stuff – I like this because I think it’s better for you than plain old white rice and definitely adds more flavor, and even though I kinda feel like a hippie for using it, it’s purty.
  • Salt and pepper to taste (like you have any)
 So there you have it. Now start chopping all that crap up while the chicken is cooking so you’ll have it ready to go. We need to be efficient, people!

Okay, now here’s where it may get tricky for some of you, so  r e a d  t h i s  p a r t 
s l o w l y…

Put a strainer in a big bowl and dump the pot of dead chicken sauce in it. Take out the strained chicken and set it aside.

Then take your chicken sauce and pour it from the bowl back into the pot through one of these strainer things to get all the gross little leftover particles out.

Dump all your perfectly sliced vegetables in the pot (don’t worry if it seems full, the vegetable will…um…what’s the word for it? Yeah, cook and they will get smaller.Add a few cups of water and
simmer on medium heat.

 While all that yummy stuff (your house should be starting to smell really good, by the way) is cooking, start stripping the chicken carcass of all the meat, being VERY careful not to get any bones and also being careful not to throw up because you're stripping the meat off a dead chicken carcass and it's just gross to think about.
WARNING: If you are an idiot like I am, you will burn your fingers like I do every time because this chicken just came out of a pot of BOILING WATER!

Anyway, when you’re done, you’ll have this giant pile of chicken and all you’re going to want to do is shove your face in it like a cokehead at a swinger’s party in 1978, but please refrain. It’s chicken soup and you kinda need the chicken for it.

 So now that you’ve added all your ingredients, just add a couple of these…

And one of these…

 And 2-3 of these and let it simmer on low until the rice is cooked.

 That’s it and that’s all I have to say. Well that and if anyone wants to come over for some delicious homemade soup, I’ll have a bowl waiting for you.


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

‘Tis the Season

I don’t know how many of you work in offices, but I’ve only been a “cube dweller” for just over two years and as much as I never, EVER thought I would enjoy the office life, it turns out I really do like it and am settling in nicely

Not that there haven’t been a few speed bumps along the way of course.

There’s this "office etiquette" thing that I’m working to master, but it seems that every once in a while, I screw up.
Much of this "office etiquette" is common sense, of which I’d like to think I have a good amount, but I’m a work in progress and I’m still learning the ins and outs of office life on a daily basis.
Things like controlling the volume of my voice and not using foul language are pretty easy. I learned that stuff in church when I was a kid.
It's the things like telling my boss she can really pull off the Ellen Degeneres look , burping in my cube, not knocking before entering the VP’s office when the door is closed or telling the HR manager she looks hot in that outfit that I need to work on.

I’m learning as I go.

One thing I have learned about the office life is that around the holidays, the junk food is out in full force and you’re expected to eat it. Literally every day, there are new plates of cupcakes or pumpkin bars, donuts, cookies, candy etc. It’s a miracle I don’t have diabeetus just working there. Today they were giving out boxes of See’s candy for God’s sake!
Last year, I exercised absolutely no self control and ate damn near every sweet, delectable treat the office had to offer and go figure, I put on a few extra pound because of it.
This year I’m determined to do my very best to avoid scarfing down every holiday themed frosting coated ass enlarging sugar bomb I see, and so far, I’ve been doing a pretty good job.
Today was tough though because there were like, 20 different kinds of cheesecake in the break room, and in a moment of weakness, I ate one. It was lemon and it was delicious. What’s a win for me though is that there was a TON of it leftover and I didn’t eat more. I grabbed a cupcake and honestly tried to eat it, but tossed it after one bite. I just couldn't do it. I stopped at one slice of cheesecake and that’s huge for this guy. And I did eat some grapes, so there’s that.

Bottom line, I’m getting a grip on the food situation in the office and I’m proud of that. There’s no way a piece of cheesecake can ever be called a failure in my book anyway. It’s cheesecake, it’s delicious and I just did an Ironman, so there!
Yeah, I still need to work on the "office etiquette" thing a bit, and that will come with time, but I think I've got this holiday food thing on the ropes.

Anyone want a box of See’s candy?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Domo Arigato, Mr. Robato

Today on my way home, after flipping through the 5 presets on the hi-fi system in the White Shadow and realizing just how much Sacramento radio really sucks donkey balls, that stupid Styx song Mr. Roboto came on.
Without going into a stupid rant (or am I already doing that) we’ll just say that I hate that song with a passion. The only song I hate more is “Bang Your Gong” or anything by Danzig.
Anyway, I decide I’m going to crank up the radio and force myself to listen to the entire song, all the way through, no matter what.
There are few singers that make my skin crawl as much as Dennis DeYoung, so sitting through almost ANY Styx song would be an exercise in masochism, but this song in particular is worse than all of them put together. Really, I’m amazed that their producer even let them record it, but I digress…
So I’m driving along in stop and go traffic (I wasn’t stuck in traffic, I was traffic) and I’m powering through this song and even catch myself singing along. If anyone happened to be able to hear it through my windows, they’d already think I was an idiot, so I went ahead and belted out those retarded lyrics(at least the ones I knew)  like I was a teenage girl in the front row of a Styx concert in 1983.

Then there came the quiet breakdown in the song where it’s just light keyboards and Dennis DeYoung singing, and since I didn’t know the words, I just listened…

“The problem's plain to see
Too much technology
Machines to save our lives
Machines, de-humanize”

Are these lyrics super deep and earth shattering? Not really, but they made me think about a conversation I had earlier in the day with Cube Girl about how I'm weird because I’m so outgoing and yet almost completely antisocial. I'm super chatty around the office and am so at home on the phone with complete strangers, yet I rarely get out and do "social" stuff. I think I’ve actually been taken off the office “happy hour” email, because in the two years I’ve been there, I’ve never been to one.
I email/text/Facebook, yadda yadda but more often than not, I’m looking at people’s words rather than hearing them and I don’t think that's too good a thing.
The phrase “being social” has taken on a whole new meaning in this day and age and I think all this digital communication I/we have at our fingertips makes me/us somewhat de-humanized.
 I am truly blessed to have the amazing group of friends that I have and I can tell you, sometimes I feel I don’t deserve them.
I’ve been a recluse for so long and yet they still invite me out (except for the work happy hour) and ask me to dinner and yes, sometimes I go, but a lot of the time I don’t. Not sure why, but I’m going to make a point to work on it. I don’t see my close friends nearly as often as I should and for that, I’m ashamed
Don’t worry, I’m sill going to obsessively post every little boring detail of my life on Facebook, and blow up your phone with text messages, but be careful, one of these days I may decide to go out to that bar or to that party and tell you what I’m up to right to your face.


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Why do you do Ironmans?

My buddy and I were talking last night about why I do Ironmans and after a good amount of discussion, I think I came up with an analogy that, for me, sums it up pretty well.

Doing an Ironman in a lot of ways is like being in a bad relationship. You’re in love, but at the same time, you’re completely miserable.

During training, there are good days and bad days and most of the time, the good far outweigh the bad.
Races are a bit different though. Yeah, there are good times, but when the bad times hit, they hit hard and don’t stop until you’re done and it’s over.

For me, while doing an Ironman, all I want is to get out and have it be over and done with. I swear to myself “this is the last time.” I curse Ironman and I curse myself for ever being stupid enough to get involved with it in the first place.

After I’m done, I lick my wounds, revel in the fact that it’s over and I tell myself “Never again! This is it, I’m DONE!”

Then, after the dust settles, the wounds heal and the pain is long forgotten, I’m left remembering mostly the good things.
The bad times, while still in the corner of my mind, are tucked away in the shadows.
The highs seem so much higher and the lows, well, they don’t seem quite so low as they did at the time.

I start to think “You know, it wasn’t really that bad" and I begin to think about races I might want to do. I think about how I felt crossing the finish line and not about how I felt at mile 15 when I could barely walk. I think about that well of emotion that springs up when hearing those magical words by Mike Reilly and how there is nothing -and I mean nothing- in the world like it.
I'm not stupid. I know that sometime during my next Ironman, I'll curse and yell and spit and scream and swear I'll never do it again, all the while knowing I will.

Damn you, Ironman! I wish I could quit you.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

What to Blog About

I have to admit, I’m fairly jealous of people that can blog two, three or more times a week. They always have something cool, smart or introspective to write about, yet here I sit, struggling to think of anything to write about.

It’s funny, because anyone who knows me knows that I never shut up. I often have to make a conscious effort to not talk so I don’t monopolize the conversation (although I don’t know that I do such a great job at that)

It’s hard to write about my everyday life, because really, I’m pretty boring. I can only talk about Ironman training so much “I rode, it was cool, I ran, it sucked, I swam, it was cool”
I could write about my recent trip to Cozumel, but that was such an amazing trip, it’s going to take me a while to get that together.
I could write about how much I love my Ironman Cozumel jersey and how I keep wearing it because I’m proud as a peach to have done it one more time. I could also write about how I feel like I look like a Russian Gymnastics coach when I wear it.
I could write about the delicious salad I had today, but really, how much can be said about a salad?
I could write about the mind-bending gourmet caramel apple cookies I got and wolfed down last night, but then the whole world (or at least the 17 people that may actually read this) would know how guilty I feel about it.
I could write about my dog, but that’s pretty much all I ever talk about anyway, so that’s out.
I could write about how much and how long I’ve hated running and now that my feet are marred from Cozumel and I can’t run, it’s all I want to do.

I could write about the amazing, beautiful, sexy, funny, ridiculously athletic bombshell of a woman I met in Cozumel that makes my knees go weak and my heart go pitter patter every time she emails or texts me, but there’s a chance that she might read this and that would be really embarrassing.

See how I did that?

I could write about a lot of things, but for now, I’m just going to relish the fact that I’m home, I’m back to work at a job that I love and my Mr. Poopersfaces is waiting here dropping a ball at my feet. 
One of these days I'll think of something to blog about and when I do, you'll be the first to know.


Thursday, November 3, 2011

You Sappy Bastard!

So I’m in my car today and I hear a commercial announcing that Air Supply is playing at one of the local Indian casinos here in the Sacramento area.
After screaming like a girl and almost swerving off the road in excitement, I grabbed my phone and made a voice memo so I wouldn’t forget about it (like that’s even possible.)

When I got back to work, I found a Pandora station that plays nothing but super sappy, wonderful love songs.
As you may have concluded from my excitement about the mere thought of seeing Air Supply live, I am a huge sucker for love songs. As I sit here typing this, Endless Love by Lionel Ritchie and Diana Ross just came on and I swear, I’m almost in tears.

We all have chapters in our lives and so many of them are bookmarked with music. Whether it’s a cheesy, sappy love song, a punk tune, an Irish jig song or a symphony, certain songs have the ability to take us back to those chapters in our lives that we’ve either long forgotten or chosen not to remember.

I’m not typically one who lives in, or dwells on the past, so I guess I don’t consciously think too much about it and I think that’s why I love listening to sappy love songs so much. They force me to remember the good times as well as the bad times that I normally wouldn’t think about, and I think that sometimes that’s a good thing.

Holy Shit! “How Deep is Your Love” by the BeeGees just came on.


Anyway, I say go grab that old CD, album or 8 track you haven’t listened to in 20 years. Sit back, relax and think about that time in your life, that vacation, that summer, that lost love or broken heart that you thought you’d never get over. Think about them and cherish them.

Now if I could only find someone to go see Air Supply with me…


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I got your su su sudio, baby!

Sometimes I like to do things that make me uncomfortable. No, I’m not talking about things like sleeping in cowboy boots or putting a pea under my mattress.
I’m talking about things that make me feel…well, uncomfortable.

For example:

A while back I was sitting at a red light waiting to turn left and there was a “homeless” guy standing in the median with a sign asking for money or a job or something.
It’s my assumption that this guy is used to people avoiding eye contact, so when I caught his eye, I held it.
I sat staring at a homeless man and he at me for what seemed like an eternity and he eventually looked away.
Now I wasn’t staring at him with contempt or attitude. I was staring to see who could hold out the longest. I was kinda scared that he'd flip out and jump on the hood of my car, but he didn't.

Don’t know why I did it, but it was a very uncomfortable situation for a minute..

So tonight I was on my way to NatMo’s house to drop off her groceries (NatMo crashed her mountain bike and is currently unable to do anything but walk like a gimp and sound really pathetic) , While I’m sitting at this red light, I see, I see a very handsome business woman on a bicycle pull up next to me to wait for the light as well.
At that very moment I also realized that Phil Collins’s Su Su Sudio was on the radio. No, I don’t know why it was on, it just WAS!

So anyway, I though “OMG! What if my window was down? How embarrassing would that be?” So after giving myself about 5 seconds to process the situation,  I proceeded to roll down my window, crank up the radio as loud as it would go, leaned back and gave her my best super suave “hey baby” look.

Needless to say, when the light turned green, she rode off without saying anything, but I did it and honestly, it was the most uncomfortable 20 seconds I’ve had in a long time. (no sex jokes please)

 I have no effing idea why I’m even telling this story other than it made me laugh out loud.
I guess the thought of a chubby, middle aged bald guy in a beater Subaru eyeballing a hot chick while rockin’ out to Phil Collins was so ridiculous that I just had to do it.

Peace and God bless Phil Collins.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

I am not a bike snob…or am I?

 Okay, maybe that’s a bit misleading. I’ll be the first person to admit I’m about as much of a bike snob as one can be.
I own a number of bikes and most of them are worth more than my car. Of course if you’ve seen my car, that’s not really saying much. I actually checked the Kelly Blue Book on my car and the rear wheel of my tri bike is worth more.

But I digress…

Don’t you have when people say that? It's like duh! Yeah, I know you’re digressing, I’m listening to you ramble on about something completely different than you started!

But I digress…

So in my never ending quest to find something to blog about (lol, that’s a stretch) I figured there is one way to find out if am truly a bike snob or not.

I’m going to buy a department store commuter bike, ride it to work and see if I’m capable of loving a bike designed for…well…I don’t know what they’re designed for, but I’m pretty sure it’s not daily riding.
No, I’m not going to ride it just once and blog about it and that’s it. I’ll ride it at least a couple times a week (sorry, but I can’t commit to an every day ride on this) and I am committed to ride this thing until it dies.

I was so giddy when I thought of this that I actually hopped in my car and drove to Target to look for a bike, since there isn’t a WalMart close to my house (which I’m thankful for) but alas, Target’s bike selection is a little too “high end” for me.
At least I was able to satisfy my craving for macaroni and cheese and hot dogs.

Anyway, there’s a WalMart by my work that I’ll be hitting Thursday or Friday and hopefully I’ll be able to score a sweet, new ride.

Unfortunately, now that I’ve posted this, I’m committed to doing it.

Stay tuned…

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

DVR Dilemma

So American Horror Story is on tonight. If you haven’t seen this yet, it a pretty badass new series about a family that moves into an old murder house in LA and has all kinds of crazy crap happen to them. It’s really awesome! And it also stars my man-crush Dillon McDermott, so there’s that.

I have my DVR set to record this every Wednesday, so Amy and I can watch it when we get together over the weekend.
If you don’t know Amy, she’s a total scary movie nerd and LOVES watching them (even though she covers her eyes during gross parts and won’t watch them during dinner)


I agreed that even though I won’t see her until Friday, I wouldn’t watch it and we could watch it together.

So here’s my problem. I REALLY WANT TO WATCH IT!

I figure there are a few ways this can go.

1) I can wait to watch it like I said I would and everything will be fine.
2) I can watch it without her, tell her I watched it without her and risk getting yelled at.
3) I can watch it without her, tell her I didn't watch it, act scared when we watch it together and risk getting busted and yelled at for being an asshole for watching it without her when I said I wouldn't.
4) Just for fun, I can not watch it, tell her I did watch it, let her get mad at me for watching it without her (even though I didn't) and then see what happens. Unless of course she reads this, then I guess I'll have to worry about what she would have to say about me not only thinking about watching it without her, but also thinking about watching it and not telling her or telling her I didn't when I did.

Maybe I'm over-thinking this...

I think I'll just go to bed.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What is WRONG with you people?

 So one of my triathlete friends asks “Hey, anyone want to meet Saturday morning for a swim and then out for a bike ride to Folsom/El Dorado Hills, etc??

My response “Can’t, I have a tri on Sunday and it’ll kick my butt”

Another response “Can’t I have a 17 mile run Friday, but I may be able to make the swim Saturday.”

Another response “Can’t, I’m running 17 miles Friday, but will be swimming Saturday afternoon. And I’m doing a bike/run brick Sunday.”

My response “Well I’ll be free after my race on Sunday, so I can do your bike/run brick with you.”

Yes, I’m doing an Ironman in just less than two months and yes, I’m putting in the miles, but I’ll be damned if this isn’t one of the most ridiculous conversations I’ve ever heard.

What kind of maniacs do this and call it fun? I remember when “fun” was many beers on a Friday, parties on Saturday and sleeping in between being drunk. Fun was dodge ball and swing sets. Fun was hanging out at the river and doing nothing all day

I guess in my older, wiser (yeah right) years, my definition of fun has changed.

Don’t get me wrong. I love going to bed early, waking up earlier than the guy that works at the AM/PM Mini Market and spending all weekend working out and then barely being able to walk up the stairs to the office on Mondays, but it just sounds so much more ridiculous to hear other people talk about doing the same stuff.

It seems a good lot of my friends are off their rockers and it looks like I’m one of em too, although I don’t feel like it.


Friday, August 26, 2011

What are the Odds?

So, on my never ending quest to find awful things to eat and later regret, I spotted a White Castle right down the street from my hotel here in Louisville.
Being a California native, it kinda goes without saying that I’ve never had White Castle. Kinda like how Louisvillians have probably never had Taco Bell.

Since I’d just eaten at the Ironman pre-race dinner thing, I wrestled with the decision to go for at least three minutes and of course, my primal need to eat all things crap won. I mean heck, they made a friggin’ movie about it and the Beastie Boys sang about it, so it can’t be that bad, right?
So I head out to make the four block hike to this hip burger joint and about a block away I realize I forgot my wallet, so I turn around and head back. I thought “Maybe this is a sign and I shouldn’t be getting White Castle. The Gods are telling me something, yadda yadda…”
Yeah, screw that, I was just so excited to get these stupid burgers that I’m lucky I remembered my pants, never mind my wallet.
So I get my wallet, head back out the door.

Here where it gets cool.

I‘m crossing the street a couple blocks away and I hear someone yell my name. The first thing I thought was “Who the hell is yelling my name, I don’t know anyone here.”
It turns out I left my sunglasses on the table at the Ironman dinner and the guy who was sitting next to me grabbed them and just happened to be driving down the same street I was crossing at the exact same moment.
He holds my glasses out the window and hands them to me. I thank him, we both freak out for a second and then say our "later dudes."
Had I not forgotten my wallet or had I taken that “sign from the Gods” and decided not to go, I wouldn’t have my Oakleys (that I’ve had for 5 years) nor would I have a jolly ol’ belly full of delicious sliders.

I like when cool stuff happens.


Saturday, August 13, 2011

Pay it Forward

I’ve always been a believer in karma. Some people say it’s bull, but I figure I’ll take whatever I can get, ya know?

I try to do the right thing as often as I can. Whether it's something as simple as holding a door for someone, letting someone have the parking space I was waiting for or asking a cyclist I see stranded on the side of the road if they have everything they need.
It's the little things that add up. Kinda like that coin jar you toss your spare change into at the end of the day. It may not seem like much, but after a while, it builds up and is worth a lot more than you thought.

I live a pretty blessed life and I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that I like to think I have a good balance of karma in my cosmic karma account (if only my bank account was as full)

Today, about 30 miles into what was supposed to be a 60-65 mile ride, I was standing up and riding up a slight inline in the road when I heard a fairly loud “ping” and my front wheel went all wonky on me.
My first thought was “Shit, I broke a spoke, I hope I can get a new one ordered before Ironman Louisville" (which is in two weeks.) Then I though "I'm really glad that didn't happen 5 minutes ago when I was doing 35 mph down that hill."
Then I thought “Shit, I’m 30 miles out in the middle of nowhere and I’m f**ked!”
It turned out that my hub broke and while I’m a pretty good mechanic and can usually fix most stuff that happens on the road, but this was a case of “dead bike walkin” and that was that.

Anyhoo…so I call my friend Tammie, she agrees to come get me and I tell the gals I’m riding with (yes, I was riding with four women today. Don’t be j) to go ahead and take off and finish the ride and I would just walk a couple hundred yards down the road to some shade and wait.

As it turns out, I couldn’t push my bike because the front wheel was too out of true, so tossed it on my shoulder and started walking.
It had to have been the most pathetic sight, but for some reason, I felt kind cool. Not sure why…

Suddenly I hear a guy yelling asking if I’m okay and if I need a ride. He was a big, burley bearded guy in a pickup truck that upon first glance, looked a bit shady. He asked where I was going and I said that I’d be happy to just get a lift to the nearest town.
He asked where I came from and I told him I was parked in Davis, but a friend was going to come get me in a while. He dropped his tailgate and said “toss it in there, I’ll give you a lift.”

He said he had to go to the jeweler to drop off a watch to be fixed, but if I wanted to hang out, he’d give me a ride to Davis afterward.

I think his name was Dan. He’s a high school chemistry teacher, was in Vietnam, had an old man that was in WWII, loves his wife (although she nags a lot) and is a Harley rider and has been stranded on more than one occasion.

I didn’t get in the miles on the bike I wanted to today, and I’m a bit bummed about my wheel situation, but I met a super cool guy, had some great conversation and ended up feeling all warm and fuzzy after a day that should have left me cursing the Gods.

 Dan had no reason to do what he did other than he was a believer in karma and I couldn't be more thankful for that.

Sometimes stuff just rings true.


Monday, July 25, 2011

Oh sweet, sweet slumber.

I don’t know about you, but I love my naps. I’ll take one damn near any chance I get.
Saturday and Sunday are a given. Neither would be their respective day without a nap tossed right in the middle of them. If I get off early during the week, you can bet your ass I’ll be snoozing within an hour of getting home if I don’t have anything else to do. I’m actually in a bit of a post-nap haze as I type this.

I have this one coworker that tells me she hates naps. That they’re stupid and a waste of time, yet she often tells me about the latest episode of the New Jersey Housewives she just watched. This I just can’t understand. Sure, maybe if you’re little kid and are excited about the beautiful splendor that is our world, I could see how a nap would be unappealing, but hey, kids are dumb, we all know that.
Ever watch a baby? They can just sit and play with their toes or a set of keys for hours. They don’t know any better.
Me though? In my old age, I’ve come to realize that while I do enjoy this beautiful world in all of its glorious splendor, I also LOVE to sleep.
I love that confused state you’re in after a particularly long nap when you don’t know what time it is, where you are or what happened. It’s a thing of beauty.
Then you get to get up, stretch and have a cup of coffee. It’s like starting your day off all over again and of course, this works for me because I’m a morning person, so why not get in as many mornings as you can?

My friend Tammie calls me a baby whenever I talk about my naps and maybe I am, but at least I’m not so dumb that I play with my keys for hours.

Where’s my coffee?


Monday, July 4, 2011

Hot diggity dog!

I like the the 4th of July. It’s a day to celebrate our independence, potato and macaroni salads, watermelon, obnoxious ghetto people and their families cramming the parks and beaches with their gross kids and also, being American.

Did I mention hot dogs?

Yeah, hot dogs are about as American as you can get. So in celebration of this glorious and often misunderstood food group, I bought an 8 pack Nathan’s dogs, an 8 pack of buns and I’m going to do my best to eat them all.

Yeah, I know, you’re thinking “Dude, they had the huge Nathan’s hot dog eating contest today and Yakamuri Nakamura ate 47 hot dogs in 10 minutes.”
Well, I’m a pretty good eater and can hold my own with damn near any layman at a buffet, but I am by no means a professional eater and those guys are in a league of their own, so drop it.

Why the Nathan’s you ask? Okay, it’s not really in celebration of the eating contests that went on around the country today. It’s because they’re hands down, the best hot dogs in the world.
I had a ball park frank at a BBQ the other day and I could barely choke it down (I did though.) It was mushy and had no flavor. It didn’t have that *pop* like a Nathan’s.

My love of the Nathan’s dog is a double edged sword though and is actually a quite painful topic for me to talk (or write) about, as it was my ex-girlfriend –God rest her soul- that turned me on to them. So every time I take a bite of a Nathan’s I’m taking a bite of my past, and that’s a tough mouthful to swallow.

I just got ketchup (or catsup) on my keyboard, shit! Now it’s going to smell like a disgusting 7 year old kid! What the hell is the difference between ketchup and catsup anyway? It’s like baloney and bologna. And why do kids always smell like ketchup/catsup? Who knows these things?I WANT TO TALK TO THEM!

Anyway, this is silly and it’s keeping me away from my dogs, so have a nice 4th, enjoy your evening and the fireworks.

Peace and God bless America!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Highs and Lows

This morning I woke up from a dream with such heartache I thought I had to still be sleeping.

It’s been just over a year since Dewey was laid to rest and I have to say, I still struggle with his loss every day and am still brought to tears more often than I care to admit.

Last night I dreamt Dewey was still with me. We were running around and playing. I pet him as he was lying in the sun and I was (we were) happy.

Beyond happy, actually.

The joy that was in my heart as I slept is impossible to describe, although I know many of you that have -or have lost- pets can identify with it. However, the emptiness that closed in on me upon my waking with the realization that he is still gone was as unsettling as it was overwhelming.

While I miss Dewey with all my heart every day and would give almost anything to have him here with me again, the memories I have will always be there and for that I’m thankful.

If I could wake up with the heartbreak I woke with today everyday every day for the rest of my life, I would, because that would mean that every night I would dream about the joy and love that he brought into my life, and I wouldn’t trade that for the world.

Today I’ll give Tex some extra treats and hug him a little tighter.

Miss you Dewman.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I’m not a very good attention whore

Last weekend I bought a pretty loud pair of shoes. Okay, they’re not so much loud as they are completely obnoxious. To quote my buddy “Dude, it looks like you stepped in unicorn poop.”

Yeah, I bought them partially because (I think) they look awesome, but mainly because they’re a great shoe. I love walking/running/sleeping in them (they glow in the dark, okay!)

So today I went to Costco in my unicorn poop shoes and no less than 6 people commented on how awesome my shoes were.
The DirectTV guy actually asked if he could take a picture of them, so I literally stood there posing for two minutes so he could get a good picture (I wonder if there is now a picture of my shoes and cankles on some guy’s Facebook page)
At one point, as Tammie and I were in line waiting to get our $2 slices of pizza, there was a crowd of four people, standing there, staring at my shoes and talking about them. Even the homeless guy behind me said he was going to get a pair (although he wanted the high top hiking/mountain, and presumably urine-proof version)
Now I’m all for being the attention whore. Let’s face it, I’m covered in tattoos, I own two pink bikes and I’m ridiculously good looking, it kinda goes without saying, but it was almost embarrassing just standing there, answering questions about the most ridiculous shoes ever made and I almost didn’t like it.

It reminded me of how, when I was 19, I super-glued a Big Gulp cup to the roof of my car and went ripping around town.
There’s nothing funnier than someone ON THE FREEWAY trying to flag you down and tell you that you left your drink on your roof.
People would honk and yell and point at my roof and I would just play stupid, like I didn’t know what they were talking about and they would just look at me like I was an idiot (the joke was in them)

After about two days of people honking and yelling and getting out of their cars at stoplights to get my drink for me, it really got old fast and I had to take it off.

I like attention. I think everybody does, but I think I can only take it in small doses. I can’t imagine how celebrities deal with fame. Maybe I can write Richard Gere, or my ex-wife (lol) a letter and ask them.

I can’t return my unicorn poop shoes, and I wouldn’t anyway, I love them and they make me happy when I run in them, but I guess I’ll have to find a way to deal with the additional attention I get from wearing them.
Maybe when someone says “Oh my God, those shoes are awesome!” I’ll reply with “Oh my God, YOUR shoes are awesome!” or something witty like that.


Friday, April 15, 2011

Why the hell do I even do this?

Today, on my way home from work as I sat on the side of the bike trail for five minutes retching and dry heaving because I inhaled a bug, I (obviously) was thinking about how much it sucked.

Then I got to thinking about all the shitty stuff that’s happened to me over the years while on a bicycle.
Inhaled bugs, dozens of bee stings, gnats in the eyes or pasted to my sweaty arms. Crashes and rashes, sores and boils, broken bones, bad sunburns, failed snot rockets that don’t make it all the way out and come back and hit you in the eye…
I could go on, but I think you get the idea.

I swear, I’ve crashed so damn many times on my mountain bike that I doubt there’s a square mile in the greater Sacramento area that doesn’t have some kind of DNA sample I’ve left behind.

Cycling, for the most part, is miserable. Sure, there are days when it’s warm and pretty out and the birds are singing, flowers are blooming, kittens are prancing and all that happy crap, but for the most part, it’s usually a suffer-fest and I often question why I do it. I like to go fast and to go fast, I have to push myself. When I push myself, my heart, lungs and legs hate me, but I do it anyway.

I’d like to say I have some cool, deep “zen” reason for why I put myself through this stupid activity that I know I complain about a hell of a lot more that I rave about, but I don’t think I do.

Why do I do it?

 I do it because I can and I’m going to keep doing it until I can’t anymore.
 I do it because the human body is an amazing machine and no matter how hard I push it, bend it or break it. It always comes back better than it was before and says “Thank you. Let’s do it again.”


Saturday, April 9, 2011

What kind of cheap bastard am I?

Anyone who knows me knows I’m just about the cheapest bastard out there. I’m always looking to save a buck or haggle a good deal any day of the week.
I go to garage sales looking for great deals, I buy second hand a lot of the time, hell I even drive to Costco and put up with the “Costco people” just so I can save a few bucks on broccoli, pork chops and spring salad mix.

I’m thinking of this because today has been a day of highs and lows for me in the little world of cheap which I live.

I’ve wanted this particular Garmin GPS heart rate monitor/speedometer/dishwasher watch for some time now, but the damn thing is $399, so I’ve put off getting one. I mean, what the hell kind of person drops that kind of dough on a friggin’watch?

Apparently a person like me.

I went to REI. I walked up to the watch case. I knew what I wanted. I asked the guy to look at it and damn near had an anxiety attack thinking about how I might throw up on the the cashier when he asked me to swipe my card. But I knew I wanted it and I bit the bullet and bought it. It hurt, but I have it and I’m more that elated about it.
No, I don’t “need” this watch, but I think I deserve it. I work hard and well…um…well, I really wanted it.


Jump ahead 30 minutes.

On the way home from REI with my ridiculously expensive new toy, I spy a garage sale and of course, I stop and start rummaging for more crap I don’t need and, low and behold, I see the most beautiful cookie sheet I’ve ever seen. It was like a ray of sun from God was shining on it and angels were singing.

I have one cookie sheet. It’s probably 15 years old, I don’t know where I got it. It’s warped and I’ve probably eaten about 40% of the non-stick surface, because it’s not there anymore.

Anyway, as I’m harboring my excitement, I calmly ask the lady “how much for the cookie sheet?” She replies “$2.00.”
After wincing and playing that poor little me card that ALWAYS works, I say in my sweetest, most suave voice “will you take a dollar for it?”
She said no and wouldn’t budge.

Now the whole mindfuck here is that I wouldn’t pay TWO DOLLARS for that cookie sheet. I told her "sorry, but I have to walk away" and did just that. I walked away from what could have quite possibly been the best deal on a cookie sheet I’ll ever see. Who knows when this is going to come back and bite me in the ass. My guess is the next time I want to make cookies or pigs in a blanket. 
I can only imagine what that woman was thinking.

It was borderline embarrassing to not be willing to pay that extra dollar, but for some reason, I just couldn't do it!

What kind of cheap bastard am I?  Hell I don’t know.

I’m training now and I guess I need a $400 watch more than I need cookies and pigs in a blanket.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Every morning I wake up on a diet

Yesterday I saw a commercial for a new reality show about eating disorders and one of the clips they show is a woman that says “Every day I wake up on a diet, and every night I go to bed a failure.”

Man, did those words hit home.

For the past year or so, every day I would wake up and say “I’m going to drink more water. I’m going to eat a healthy lunch. I’m going to make a healthy dinner” and every single day, all that talk would go out the window and I’d eat 4000-5000 calories and hate myself because of it.

It’s no wonder that last year I trained my ass off for an Ironman and only lost about 10 lbs. Thank God I'm at least motivated enough to ride and run. Otherwise I'd be 400 lbs.

Anyway, those days are gone.

After a wetter than usual winter, I have extra lbs and a serious lack of fitness staring me in the face, and with 5 months until my next Ironman, there is NO WAY I’ll be able to post a better time than I did last year if I don’t get off my ass and do something.

So here I am, doing something.

I have committed to changing my eating habits. No, I’m not going on a diet. I’m just eating like I’m supposed to be eating. Like I know I’m supposed to be eating.

 I’m eating whole foods. Natural, beautiful colorful foods and I have to say, I feel better than I have in years.
On top of my regular cycling and running, I’m incorporating daily workouts to focus on other muscle group to enhance my overall well being.

This is going to be a long, hard road for me, but the time is now and as an old hag once told me “Every day counts.”

The sun is finally out, the weather is perfect and I have no excuses. I’ve set my goals and I’m responsible for achieving them. And I will.

I’ll probably be blogging more and more about my workouts, meals and all around training. I will not be posting progress pics, because who the hell wants to see that anyway?

It’ll probably be boring, but you’ll read it and you’ll like it if you know what’s good for you!


Sunday, March 27, 2011

John Denver had it right

When he said “Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy."

No truer words were ever spoken.

Every year when winter comes, for as far back as I can remember, I get into an awful funk. I get quiet (well, quiet for me), withdrawn, emotional, fat and sometimes even grumpy. I sit indoors , in the gray gloom of winter and pine for the brutally hot days of summer that I know will someday come, but feel like they never will.

 I’m a summer guy. Always have been and let’s face it, if you live in Sacramento, you kinda have to be.
The summers here are ridiculous. Yeah, I know, it’s a dry heat, but it’s dry like “you just walked into an oven” kinda dry. And you know what? I love it!

I love the smells of sunscreen and sweat, the look of my retarded cyclist’s tan lines -which as ridiculous as they are- make me proud to have. I love the smell of BBQ and pollen in the air. I love that I’ve traded all my sweaters, beanies and jackets for shorts, tee shirts and flip flops and that women have all done the same.

What’s not to like?

After I don’t know how many weeks of gray, cloudy, dark and rainy days, I woke up today to blue skies and for the first time in a long time, I actually smiled when I looked out the window.

I like to think of myself as a positive person, but I’m not going to get too giddy about this beautiful forecast just yet, as I have a feeling we’re not quite through with the rainy crap. But I think over the next few weeks, I’ll slowly be getting out of this dismal, wintry funk I’ve been struggling with and will get back to the fun, lovable, and (OMG) social person that I am.
I will warn you though, if April is a shitty, rainy month and you say “April showers bring May flowers”, you’re liable to get punched in the face.

I’d like to apologize to the friends I have that I haven’t been keeping up with. I know it’s a shitty excuse, but Old Man Winter really got the best of me this year and I promise, I’ll be annoying the crap out of you like I usually do soon enough.

For now, I’m going to put on my sorely neglected running shoes, some shorts and a shirt –that are too tight- and head out the door and try to burn off a bit of this winter flab I’ve accumulated.

Now I have that damn John Denver song stuck in my head. Ugh!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Best damn soup ever.

So I thought I would share my culinary awesomeness with you. If you read carefully and follow my detailed instructions, maybe, just maaaybe you can make soup as awesome as I do. A lofty goal I know, but you’ll never achieve your dreams if you don’t try.

First step is to choose the most delicious and unhealthy ingredients on the face of the earth. This is not low carb, low fat or low flavor. This is balls out, artery clogging, heart attack inducing, slap your Mother slop -and in my opinion- is what makes the best food. So I picked a bunch of delicious stuff and tossed it in a pot. I’m actually getting fatter just typing about this soup.

Granted, I don’t make this type of stuff that often (I’d be 400 lbs if I did), but a group of us at work are having a “soup exchange”  tomorrow and I figure mine will probably be the best, and if it isn’t, everyone will have dropped dead from a heart attack before they get a chance to realize it wasn’t.

I have to mention that I just now blew my own mind by realizing that I’m such an office drone that I’m even participating in a “soup exchange” in the first place, and second, that I’m actually excited about it. I hate me.

Anyway, back to the ingredients.

 Butter, potatoes, cheese heavy whipping cream, onions, kielbasa, corn and a whole lotta love.
 Always make sure your knife is sharp. If you don’t own a good set of knives, get one. It makes chopping and dicing fun and will save a lot of time.

 Dice the crap out of your damn onions and sauté them in butter. Yes, butter. Delicious, fatty butter. Two sticks of it! Add some damn pepper too.

After cooking your onions down for 10-15 minutes, add your chopped kielbasa and cook for another 10 minutes or so.

Add your damned corn

Add your damned potatoes

DO NOT ADD THIS! Spotted dick has no business hanging around this recipe..

Add a bunch of this. It's sea salt and there’s nothing worse than under-salted, bland food!  Really, if you’ve even considered making this damn soup, salt is the last thing you need to worry about anyway, so dump that shit in there and remember, when cooking, measuring cups and teaspoons are for pussies.

Add your heavy whipping cream and 8 cups water. I think I put in 8 cups, but I’m not really sure. Just put some water in it. If you know your way around the kitchen, you'll know how much is enough.

Once it warms up and the damn potatoes are softening, start shredding that damn cheese into it and again, this isn’t a healthy recipe so man up and use the whole pound.

Once you get it all going, you can whisk in a bit of flour to thicken it up or add more water if it’s too thick and BAM! You have the best damn soup ever.

 Anyway, that’s about it. I guess you could substitute bacon or some kind of ham for the kielbasa, but I think the kielbasa adds a lot more flavor and who doesn’t like flavor?

 I’m going to go taste it now and hope it doesn’t suck.

Ha! Who Am I kidding?

Bon appetite!