Category Archives: How I think

An Evil sense of humor

I just watched a pitch for a “Smart House.”  It’s run by a Smart Phone ap.  Oooooooh the possibilities! Let me tell you about the features of this marvelous product.  It has camera access to every room in your house.  Oh really?  The bathroom?  It has 2 way communication so even kids without phones can contact you by ringing the door bell.  Oh, yes, there’s a camera in the door bell.  It keeps a log of everyone that has been to your porch!  With this ap, you can open and close your garage door, turn up or down the thermostat, turn your lights on and off, turn off your appliances (like irons and washing machines) and lock and unlock your doors.  I’m like a kid in a candy store!

“Hey house!  Turn on the lights, open the garage door and unlock the front and side doors.”  *Waits patiently for enterprising thieves to notice.*  There’s a likely participant.  He wanders into the garage, and checks the door.  In he comes.  “Hey house!  Turn out the lights.”  Thief walks into chair.  Disembodied voice (you) says, “You forgot to clap twice to turn on the lights.”  Thief is startled, but claps twice.  Nothing happens.  Disembodied voice says, “I’m sorry, I didn’t understand your command.  Please clap twice, slowly.”  Thief claps slowly.  Nothing happens.  “I’m sorry, I didn’t understand your command.  Please clap twice, faster than last time but not too fast.”  Thief claps twice.  Nothing happens.  He claps again faster, then again slower.  Disembodied voice says, “Thank you!   Thank you!  I love the applause!  You like me you really like me.”  Lights remain off.  Thief runs into another chair.  Lights come on.  Siren comes on.  Disembodied voice yells, “Clap twice to turn off alarms and alert police that you are a friendly neighbor just feeding the fish.”

You sit in your cozy motel monitoring the poor thief and are stifling uproarious laughter.  Thief is clapping like crazy to turn off alarms.  Disembodied voice yells, “I’m sorry, did you clap?  I can’t hear it over the cacophony.  Please clap louder.”  Thief runs into laundry room and closes the door.  Washer starts up.  Disembodied voice says, “Maria, you’re early.  You don’t usually start the washer at this time.  Are you under duress?  Maria?  Maria?  If this is not Maria, invisible poison gas will shortly permeate the room and you’ll be dead in 30 seconds.”  Thief runs out the door.  Siren turns off, lights go out, and thief falls over ottoman.  Lights flash on and off. TV turns on and off.  Prerecorded horror movie starts to play.  Washer turns off, radio turns on.  Temperature is slowly climbing to 90 degrees.  Thief is in full blown panic.  He runs for the door.  “House?  Lock all the doors and turn off all lights, close and lock garage door.  Alert police.”  He tries to break the bullet proof windows.  No luck.  He tries to unlock the door, but you are much faster relocking it than he is opening it.  Police will be there in 1 min, turn on siren, turn off lights, turn off appliances.

Police arrive to hear panicked thief begging to be taken out to nice quiet jail cell with 15 crack heads and a biker gang rather than stay in this apparently unassuming, empty house.  Officer 1 turns to Officer 2 and says, “You know, that’s the 5th time this month we’ve had an attempted robbery at this place.”  Officer 2 replies, “and it’s also the 5th time we’ve had the thieves begging to be taken to jail.  Weird huh?”  “Nahhhhhh….”

Don’t let me get a hold of this Smart House ap.  It isn’t safe.


Why does it take so looooonnnnnnngggggg?

Broke my hip in August.  10 months.  3 months now without cane or crutches.  My Physical Therapist says, “Try not to walk with a limp.”  OK.  But my injured leg doesn’t come straight up and down when I step on it.  It kinda lists off to one side.  When I walk on the tread mill, my gait is ok, but when I’m done, my right arm is sore.  “Don’t lean on it.”  ok.  “Try not to walk with a limp.”  *puts hand back on handle bars for tread mill.*  “Now that’s good, just take your hand off now.”  *takes hand off*  “Now try not to walk with a limp…”  repeat.

They’re all confused about what to do with my gait.  So they sent me to the shoe store to get better shoes.  I paid $165 for shoes that hurt.  They have a wide sole and a very hard and high arch.  I slide to the outside of the shoe.  (Gravity tends to work that way.  Put something on a hill and it will slide down.)  “Your gait needs improving.  The shoes are fine; you are messed up.”  I have blisters on the tops of my toes on one foot, and the tarsometatarsal joint on the outside of my foot goes out of place if I step on uneven ground.  This is most unpleasant.  Since I was a dance teacher many years ago, I know how to pop it back in, but that doesn’t make it less painful, and it doesn’t solve the problem.

I tripped over a broken hose this morning, and it hurt that foot, and also the thigh on my injured leg.  Here I am at 7:30 AM and my day is already slated to be nasty.  I’m driving through the heavy rain with lightning and thunder, and the guy on the radio says, there’s a better chance for rain (50%!) for tomorrow.  How can a 50% chance of rain be better than the 100% that we have now?  Will it rain more earnestly?  My conclusion is that the day brings what the day brings, and hurting myself 1st thing in the morning does not dictate how the rest of the day will go.

Break through!

This might make the difference!  I want to thank AGoe for this.  She’s such a great blogger and she gives me insight and hope.  When it is put like this, what is it I do most of the time?  I get disgusted with myself and think that it will move me to be successful.  I am trying to hate myself content, happy, with a feeling of accomplishment.  I am trying to criticize myself  better, faster, cleaner, and healthier.  I’m trying to shame myself worthy of people’s attention, respect, friendship, and caring.  Well no WONDER!

Can I blame anyone for this?  What if you’ve been told all your life that everything you are and do are not good enough?  I am good enough!  For a long while, I debated people on these points.    I am just as smart and competent and resourceful and healthy and as good as you are.  Something happened.  I got nothing in encouragement except from my parents, and even then, I got the distinct impression that I was a disappointment to them and they were encouraging and supportive because they had to be.  Eleanor Roosevelt said that no one could make you feel inferior without your consent.  I got tired of arguing and debating, and I got to the point where I thought to myself, “Self?  If EVERYONE tells you the same thing, maybe they’re right.”  So I gave my consent.  I went into a spiral.  Yes, you are right, I’m scum.  No?  Ah, I give scum a bad name.  You’re probably right.  Want me to teach you banjo?  Want me to teach you statistics?  If you’d like to be a millionaire–I can help you.  Oh wait, why would anyone take advice or mentoring/teaching from scum?  Never mind…  I gave up on myself over and over again.  I’d do something really amazing, and everyone would be surprised that that I was capable of that kind of performance.  Then I would find it impossible to capitalize on that performance because I was unworthy of people’s trust and belief.

I need to spiral back up. I will have to leave the self hate, the vicious criticism, and the shame behind.  I have to do what I’ve been teaching students and clients for the last 50 years to do–pat yourself on the back for the things that go right and say “oops” for the things that go wrong.  Use the phrase, “Hmmm, isn’t that interesting?” or “That didn’t go as planned, recalculating!” instead of cussing myself out and reaffirming all the negative things people say to and about me or imply by the eye rolls and the snickers (not the candy bar…I like the snickers candy bars!  :p)  Should be an interesting change in perspective.

I feel better

Two posts ago, I decided that the numbers do not affect how I feel or influence my weight management program.  I found myself really really frustrated that I would eat such and such calories, and expend thus and so energy to controlling my weight and health, and see no benefit.  I was losing practically no weight, and in some cases gaining weight by being diligent in tracking my numbers.  It took an enormous amount of effort (ok, what exactly CAN I eat, and why do I have to spend an hour on the rowing machine to counter act the cinnamon roll I ate in 15 min?!!)  I threw out the numbers and just figured I’d eat sensibly and exercise to feel better and not worry about all those feelings of inadequacy and failure.

Welllllllll, when you do that, it’s like going off road to get to your destination.  I did that once.  We were in an airport in Canada on our way to England for a tour.  There was nothing at the airport we could really afford, being poor college students, so we decided to go to a mall or something to get food.  We didn’t want to take a taxi, and since we had a 7 hour layover…we went cross country to get to what we thought would have something affordable and edible.  We were not dressed properly for this adventure.  It seemed flat and passable and shouldn’t have taken more than 1/2 an hour to traverse.  It wasn’t.  It was rough, and muddy, and by the time we got to where we wanted to go, we were past starving and didn’t care what the prices were.  It defeated the whole purpose.  Then we had to trek back to make our plane.  We had a goal in mind, “It’s right over there!  We can see it!  Why aren’t we there yet?  Boy was THIS a stupid idea!”  We didn’t consult a map, we didn’t call to see what their prices were (no cell phones) and didn’t consider other alternatives such as ordering food and sharing it.  We reached our destination and got back in time to catch our flight, but we didn’t achieve our purpose.

I am back at the point where my back stiffens up when I walk or stand for any amount of time.  I put my arms to sleep when I lie on my back.  I have difficulties getting out of my car.  This doesn’t feel good.  This feels clumsy; this feels annoying; this feels painful.  So I go back to my numbers again.  Then, I had a flash of insight.  You need the numbers like you need signs…14 miles to Cambridge, 20 minutes to work, 2 hours to take this test.  It is to help you gauge your progress.  You are not in pursuit of the numbers, they just tell you where you are.

I know I have to eat sensibly.  I know I should move around some everyday instead of once a week.  The questions that arise are, what did you eat, and how much is available for the rest of the day.  What have you done movement wise today?  Should I set aside a specific number of minutes or a specific activity to do on each day.  It becomes a chore and we all hate chores.  It doesn’t mean you don’t have to clean house or organize stuff for your taxes just because you hate chores.  Things have to get done regardless of how you feel about them.  Oh.

So I went back to my numbers.  I am back on the path…though it is still muddy and rutted and dotted with dog poo.  I lost 3 pounds.

Weak attempts

This last week, my hubby and I went to Las Vegas.  We do not gamble, but we had a conference there, and since it was closer than the last conference they had, we thought we’d go.  We drove to Las Vegas.  Wonderful trip!  15 hours the 1st day and 10 hours the 2nd.  What a shock.  Las Vegas is HOT!  It felt like a convection oven!  In order to save money, we got a “free” hotel if we went for a sales presentation for time shares.  (More about that in a financial blog I think.)  But the conference was good, and the trip was fun.

I had protein-heavy breakfasts, and to get to the locale of the conference, we hopped on a shuttle and then walked about 1/2 a mile or so to the convention hotel, and then another 1/2 mile inside the hotel.  It was BIG!  We had dinner at the convention, and they gave us wayyy too much food, and, *pats self on back* I didn’t eat it all.  Then we hoofed it back through the hotel to the street and then the 1/2 mile back to the shuttle for a ride back to our hotel.  We were fighting travel lag and so Sunday morning, we had a very late breakfast.  We had to go to the sales presentation, but it didn’t make financial sense, so we declined their gracious invitation to buy in.  We had supper then headed back to see the Bellagio Fountains.  That was amazing!   Once more took the shuttle, and walked 1/2 a mile, enjoyed the show, walked back 1/2 a mile.  Now that doesn’t seem like much in the way of exercise, but remember that at 9 PM, it was still about 95 degrees!  Obe was comatose.  Hardly woke up during the whole time we were in Vegas.  Started to come around on the way back, but I had another complication.

Due to the very very dry weather, I had prodigious nose bleeds!  I couldn’t blow my nose, or sneeze, or laugh for that matter, and it would just run!  Ewww.  So when we stopped in OK city for lunch, I was not at all hungry.  Wednesday, same problem.  I had to call in sick because I couldn’t stop bleeding on myself.  I was ok on Thursday though.  Obe wants to make up for lost time and is tempting me with pie and burgers and more pie.  Bad Obe!!!!

2 weeks without trainer… dat dat dahhhhhhhhhh

Sherry is petite.  5’3″ and all muscle, she’s in her 50’s and can do T planks, bicep curls with 40 pound weights, and a whole spin class without breaking a sweat.  She’s sweet.  She feels guilty when the workout she gives me makes me sore.  Lately, due to time restraints and vacations and such, we have taken a break from training.  Of COURSE we were going to continue to log our foods and come in for training.  She wanted an update every Saturday.  We promised we would give our food logs and exercise logs and current weights to her.

“Free at Last!  Free at Last!…”  Haven’t put a foot in the door of the gym for 2 weeks.  Haven’t kept track of anything going into my mouth.  Haven’t weighed myself in a month.  I’m not free.  I’m a slave to my fat.  My fat, which I believe I called Obe, says YOU ARE HUNGRY.  Then he laughs maniacally when I try to find something healthy and end up doing a vacuum cleaner impersonation.  I did a concert last night where I played the drums.  There was no air moving on the stage, and hot lights.  I got that 1 little trickle that runs down your back.  My little trickle didn’t stop there though.  It gathered its buddies and turned into a small brook that ran all the way down my leg!  I was soaked when I got home.  I had a snack of cottage cheese and a fresh peach.  I have to go to the gym today just to weigh if nothing else.  Didn’t walk yesterday–95 degrees and 200% humidity.  I’m wondering if I have to start completely over when I get back into training.  That is so depressing.  At one point, I was down to 187.  I quit going and ballooned up to 215.  I can’t do that again.  That would be stupid.  Obe thinks this is amusing.  I have resolved I am going to get in shape.  Obe says, “Round is a shape…” and then he giggles.  I am going to get down and STAY down below 200 pounds.  Obe says, “You could have your husband sit on you.”  Obe is laughing so hard he has tears in his navel.  I hate Obe.

Any psychologist reading this would say I was devolving, and having delusions.  I might even have a multiple personality developing.  He’d ask, solicitously, “and how are we feeling?”  and we’d reply, “We have no idea how you and your personalities feel, but one of mine is confused and angry and another wants to beat the snot out of you.  Obe thinks this is hilarious.  He asks why I haven’t named the others in his crew.”  “Shut up Obe!”

I got a FITBIT!

What does that mean?  It means that now it counts how many steps it is to the bathroom for me! I figure…2548 trips will get me 1/2 way to my 10k step goal.  *Does her math*  hmmm.  That would be 100 trips an hour if I didn’t sleep.  I don’t think that will work.  I may have to actually go someplace and walk to get my 10k.

Learned about a Keto diet.  It’s generic Atkins.  Have all the bacon and chicken with skin on and steak you want, just don’t eat peaches and bananas, and pop.  I will let you know if I can do this.  Sounds like my kind of diet…bacon diet.  There ya go!

mind set

Who’s in charge of your mindset?  You?  The people around you?  Your circumstances?

I had a wake-up call this weekend.  I looked through my blog entries and so many are negative.  Laws of Biology and physics do not apply to me.  Frustration.  Distraction and Depression…Yikes!  I have also been studying the life of Moses and for those of you who read Christopher Moore, the statement that Shylock makes is just a tad off.  When I complained about how things didn’t seem to work for me, how everything seemed to go wrong, how something was wrong with me…I was doing the exact same things the Hebrews were doing in the wilderness.  “Why did you bring us out of Egypt to kill us?  There’s no water and no meat and we hate this stupid food!” (This was the manna that miraculously appeared every morning 6 of 7 days every week, every month, for 38 years!)  Their clothes didn’t wear out; their shoes didn’t wear out. God was moving about 2 million people around the area and protecting them from wild animals, starvation, storms, renegades…and they complained about not having cucumbers.  They weren’t rejecting Moses, they were rejecting God and his blessings.  I had to consider that every time I was complaining, I was rejecting something God had put in front of me to accomplish.  Big mistake.  <.<   >.>  <.<  (looks for poisonous snakes, lightning bolts, tremors of earthquakes…)  I must stop complaining.  It makes for good comedy, but after a while, it’s not funny any more.  It fixes nothing.  It amplifies depression.  It tends to make one less likely to get up off her ass and do something productive because it will fail anyway attitude.  What kind of example is that?

So this weekend, I traveled 8 hrs to a Women’s conference.  It was for the business, but these conferences are not like regular conferences.  Every single woman in the place started at a different spot:  married, unmarried, kids, no kids, over 40, under 40, rich, poor, good job, unemployed, 6th grade education, graduate degrees.  They were all in business for themselves and hungry to find the nuggets they needed to boost their income and their influence.  There was no single winning “type”  and there was no single formula to succeed.  They covered every aspect and every time I go to one of these things, I get to the end and think, “well, that was interesting, but doesn’t apply to me,” and then the last day, KAPOW!  Just what I needed.  I don’t know why it’s always the last day, but I suspect God is needing me to see the build up to this last day so I understand it better in light of what I’ve heard and the people I’ve met and talked to in that time.

I ate very sensibly and took the stairs about 1/2 the time when I needed to go to my room or to the conference room.  There WAS this amazing chocolate desert on Friday however… When I started listing off the excuses I had for why I was where I was, they all sounded like things I could control.  I was not the victim here, I made my choices.  I chose not to cook much at home, I chose to be less active, I chose to focus on having fun and not getting better.  I, I, I  omg!  I am acting like a millenial in the basement of his mom’s house playing his video games while his siblings make fun of him for not having a job!

I decided (and that’s 1/2 the battle) that I was going to change my mindset and quit complaining and do something that I can control.  This should be interesting.

I still find it easier to walk the tread mill than to walk outside.  Last week, I went to the zoo with my son and his girlfriend.  The GPS was weirded out on my walking ap, and I wrote about that in my last entry.  It was pretty funny.  The walking I did the next day and the day after that was very painful!  Bad enough that I went on line to see what exactly was hurting.  It was the fascia in my lower back.  Anyone know how to reduce the pain there when walking?  Suggestions welcome!

10K steps–New Records!

OMG!  I am the fastest woman alive!  I have to get myself a red suit and a mask, and start fighting crime and stuff.

Why? you ask me…

I have an ap on my phone that is supposed to track my little walks.  It’s so cute!  “Activity started.  Distance?  0.01 miles Time: 0.05 min, average time/mile?  24 years, 6 months, 13 days, 4 hours, and 56 min.”  I exaggerate.  Today we went to the zoo.  It is not a fast walk, but it is continuous and goes up and down hills.  I figured about 3-5 miles.  I was WRONG!  Somehow, I left the zoo, traveled across the river about a mile, took a picture, took the scenic way back to the zoo and did 4 miles in 11 min.  I had 2 miles that I did in 3 min!  I know that’s gotta be some kind of record!  I did the next 2 miles in 8 min.  My average for the 1st 3 miles was about 22 min/mile, that’s not 22 min total, that’s 1 mile=22 min.  I didn’t want to squash any butterflies, or frighten the children in the aquarium, so I held it down to a mosey.  My son and his girlfriend do not remember me zipping out of the zoo at high speed.  The airport did not report any UFO’s crossing the river and back taking no heed to roads, traffic, etc…  To tell you the truth, I don’t remember much about my transportation, or whether I said the spell correctly, or whether Scotty really DID transport me to another place.  Seems there might have been a glitch in my gps on the ap.  Well DANG!

I had to edit my trip and now it looks boring.

I was feeling pretty good about myself…built up to 2 miles last treadmill walk in the gym.  Figured all I had to do was add a lap a day.  Then I had my training session on Saturday.  Ate right, did my walks…what were the results?  Gained 1.5 pounds.  WHAT?!!!!!   NO FAIR!  She looked at me and said… “Carbs, carbs, carbs.”  If I eat more protein, I necessarily eat more fat.  NO, I do not want to drink some powdered stuff!  I want to eat FOOD.  This is a lifestyle change.  I don’t want to depend on packages and powders for the rest of my life.

Exercises Saturday:

15 Ball slams with 16# ball, 12 chest presses at 25#, 15 Shoulder presses at 20#, 12 triceps extensions on dip machine 30#, 12 rows on machine 40#, hand raises with knee lifts 15, side to side stretches 15, 15 mountain climbers in standing position.  3 sets of each of those.

I have a women’s conference this weekend.  There are some nice walking paths there, and maybe I can get the gps to work.  I have to be careful what I eat this weekend!

Disorganized and depressed

Those things go hand in hand don’t they.  I am looking for a sign-up sheet I passed around 2 weeks ago.  I am supposed to post it today.  No clue where it is.  I found a ream of paper, agendas, lists, goals, paperwork, research, scanning alignment, and none of it I have needed in the past month.  I’m supposed to PUT it somewhere, but I just stand there and wonder what the heck I need this stuff for.  Then the things I need, I cannot find.  You know that Hoarder show they have on TV?  I look at my office and I freeze up.  I don’t know what to do.  I pick up a stack of stuff, and go through it, and look for a place to put it, don’t find THE SPOT and so I put it down, then pick it up, and turn around to put it somewhere, then put it back.

I am supposed to do cardio 5x a week and weight training 3x a week, but I cannot get started.  I do know what to do, and I stand there willing myself to do it, and then I don’t.  I have the same feeling as when I’m dealing with all that paperwork.  I feel the need to fail.  It’s easier to fail because then no one expects anything from you.  Then they’re surprised when you do something.  The only thing is, you’re starting from a bad location.  You have to overcome a big gap in what people perceive you can do and what you actually can do.  They assume you will fail and so they do not choose to believe you or trust you or choose you for a task.  Why would ANYONE put themselves through that?  And yet…

After you have adopted this perspective, “I’ll come from behind and shock them all!  (insert evil laugh here)” then you get to the realization that maybe, just maybe they’ve been right to assume you cannot measure up.  You fail at coming from behind for the 1st time, then again, then again.  Maybe they were right and you were just fooling yourself.  Then you just stop trying.  YOU assume that you cannot measure up.

Others, your friends or family, see this subtle change in attitude, and they try to bolster you up.  Here’s where it gets really strange.  The more they protest your assumption that you are useless or hopeless, the more you try to prove them wrong.  Again, why would any sane person do that?  Because we believe in cause and effect when it comes to psychology, we look for reasons as to why a person would behave or think or feel like this.  What is really needed, I guess, is for someone to come along, give you a kick in the butt, and say, “Knock it off!  Get back to work, and solve the problem!”

All Right.  Get off your butt, pick a project, get started!