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Archive for the 'Dumb' Category

Sloth and parking

Thursday, May 17th, 2007

For some reason, I’m feeling pretty sluggish this week. Last week was a low-mileage one, I only rode about 75 miles. This week may be similar, although I’m hoping to get more mileage in by doing one or two longer rides.

I’m also at a standstill right now in terms of weight loss, which I know is related to my sloth, but it’s still frustrating. I weigh about what I did a week ago, I guess it’s good I haven’t gained any weight, but I stopped losing it, too. This is made more frustrating because I wasn’t exactly sluggish over the weekend, hiking over 8 miles and mountain biking 15. But that brings me to the other problem: it’s also getting harder to follow our diet because … well, I’m just hungry all the time. I thought this would get easier as time went on, but so far, it’s only gotten harder as I get hungrier every day.

Sarah and I rode to the public library last night, a ride that is mostly a subset of my commuting route. She hasn’t ridden much yet, so I wanted to show her a way to get to the library, where she has an internship. I don’t know if she’ll try riding to work or not, but I think she was surprised how easy it was.

I think Sarah wants to build up some more confidence before trying to ride to work, and I don’t blame her. It can be scary out there when you aren’t used to dealing with traffic. Hopefully, if we ride more together, she’ll get used to riding in traffic and learn how to do it safely. She did very well last night, the only mistake I noticed was that she rode in the door zone briefly, and she promptly corrected her mistake. I need to get Sarah a new seatpost or something — the one that came with her bike was terrible, so I replaced it with an old one I had on hand, but that one keeps slipping.

I took my mountain bike in for some service last night. The rear brake hardly works, it probably needs a new pad, but the shop had to order that. I also need to replace my saddle, as I bent the rails on my old one when I crashed on Sunday. The guy was trying to sell me on this $65 Specialized saddle that seems really nice, and he’s going to let me try riding it around the neighborhood first. I actually don’t mind spending that much on a saddle if I won’t have to buy another one for a long time. I just wish I could try it a little more first.

I’ve been observing lately an aspect of motorist behavior that baffles me, even as a motorist myself: people sure can be weird about parking. I started thinking about this yesterday as I pulled into the parking lot on my bicycle and found that the lot was so full that I could barely navigate it, even on two wheels. Cars were parked very close together, some even double-parked.

You might assume that they have no choice, but there is a parking lot with plenty of space right across the street — and we can get free permits (free to us, the company pays for it). If you get a permit, you’re asked not to park in the lots on either side of our building, and so are committed to parking across the street, but it’s not even a very busy street. I simply don’t understand why people would rather fight for a space right next to the building , possibly getting trapped, rather than park across the street with no trouble at all.

This also makes me think of people who will drive around for 20 minutes to find the closest possible parking space, instead of parking slightly further away and walking. What’s wrong with walking? Don’t people realize that in some cases, they’d actually save time by parking further away? Are people so lazy that they can’t walk a few hundred feet?

I’m just glad I never have to worry about stuff like this when I’m bicycling. I do still have to deal with the drivers who speed to a red light. Why the hurry to stop? If it looks like I’ll have to stop, I’ll slow down so I can keep moving at least a little bit, and hopefully by the time I reach the light, it will have changed. It’s easier to keep moving, even if only a little bit, than to have to put a foot down.

Orange Shirt Day

Friday, March 2nd, 2007

My Festive Fridays are now no longer, since my festive shirt has a tear, and I have thus far been unable to find a suitably subtle replacement. But too late yesterday, my boss declared today Orange Shirt Day, which is apparently a long-standing and haphazard tradition around here, not occurring on any kind of repeating basis, only randomly when someone thinks of it.

But my boss sent his declaratory e-mail too late and (even though it was a high priority message!) almost nobody read it and almost nobody wore orange shirts today, aside from my boss, the head-bobber (whose shirt is the orangest I’ve ever seen), and my very own self, although I feel particularly weird about it because: 1.) I never wear orange and Q.) My orange shirt is a bit too small, not too small to be comfortable, but small enough to accentuate my belly and make me feel a bit too nipply, even though I am wearing a T-shirt underneath. But I wore the orange shirt in solidarity, or at least that was my intent, to reach out to my coworkers about whom I know little and with whom I don’t speak very much, and now I’m left here wearing this ridiculous too-small orange shirt and trying to hide my nipples without actually trying to hide them.

For the second day in a row, I sit here working on something that should be simple, so simple that it should just work, but it doesn’t. I broke down and e-mailed tech support, only to find that the guy I need to talk to is on vacation and won’t be able to help me until next week — unless the other guy helps me out of the kindness of his heart and the fact that we pay them thousands of dollars a year to …. well, we pay them to give us this ridiculous system that only works exactly how they designed it, just like some other systems here that are the same way.

I’m about to go eat some Mexican food with two of my coworkers, the orangest-shirt-ever head-bobber who thinks Americans don’t like rice, and the poker-playing accountant with wild business ideas that’ll never be practical. The good news is it’s Friday, and I think it’ll be a pretty good weekend with Sarah and hopefully a bike ride or even two, and maybe some music.

In a haze

Tuesday, January 16th, 2007

I haven’t updated in a while, but I’m still around. There simply hasn’t been much to write about. The weather has been terrible — it has been raining almost constantly since late last week. Sarah and I have been on a bad movie kick, which we are really enjoying.

I thought about writing reviews of the awful movies we’ve watched, but I don’t think I could ever do justice to atrocities such as Contaminated Man, Storm Catcher, Troll, or Troll 2. Troll 2 is easily the worst of the bunch, but Contaminated Man remains my favorite.

Other than those things, not much has been going on. I think I have Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) or something like it. I always get depressed during the winter, and this winter has been no exception. I’m still having trouble adjusting to work, avoiding smoking is still hard, I hate that I can’t get outside to exercise, and I’m generally feeling like a slug. It even seems like lately, it’s been nice outside during the week, then raining on the weekends, further contributing to my frustration.

Sarah and I had an argument on Saturday night. As usual, it started out with something stupid — I’m not even sure what anymore. It ended with me riding my bike to the gas station in the rain in the middle of the night, drunk, to buy cigarettes. That was a real act of brilliance. I smoked two cigarettes, and about 4 drags of one on Sunday, and I haven’t touched them since then. Sometimes, avoiding smoking is easier, but sometimes, it isn’t. And even now, 4+ months after quitting, I really don’t feel like myself. Even when I’m not having nicotine cravings, I’m a moody bastard with a short temper. That really isn’t like me. I’ve got to figure out how to get myself back, without going back to the nicotine. The temper part especially has to go.

Sarah and I went for a drive on Sunday to Brown County State Park. Even though it was cold and raining, it was great to be out of the house and spending time together somewhere closer to nature. We took a few photos. Most didn’t turn out, but a few did. Some of the ones that did really captured the mood of that day, which is pretty close to the mood I’ve been in general lately.

In a haze
I’ve taken numerous photos of Hesitation Point, but none quite like this. The fog is beautiful, and I like the reds and muted green colors.

Rain vision
Intentionally blurry shot of the road/trees/etc.

Minimalism in nature?

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