Kibbles and bits

One of my co-workers had an article in her office today listing all the things you shouldn’t give your pet.  Like cheese, isn’t this a staple of dog training?  Liver?  Isn’t freeze dried liver the preferred bait for show dogs?  I know we used it for the obedience ring.  Alcohol, ok that makes sense.  Grapes, doesn’t make that much sense considering that the old Italians used to know that it was time to pick the grapes when the dogs started stealing them off the vines.  Beauregard stole every Concord grape I ever grew.  On numerous occasions I’d catch him sprinting through the yard with the remains of a bunch of grapes hanging out of his mouth.  Didn’t hurt him a bit.  And is wine under the alcohol or grape category?  Tuna.  He has licked every tuna can I’ve opened since I got him.  He picks the cans up and takes them into the yard to assure himself of every last delicious morsel.  Hasn’t hurt him in the least.  Eggs.  Since dogs don’t have high cholesterol, he gets all my yolks.  Xica got all my yolks before him.  She lived to 15 years and change with a gorgeous coat.  He’s chugging along nicely, I don’t think they hurt.

Wine of the day.  Gordon Brothers Merlot.  I paid $17 for it.  Retail is around $21, God bless the Wine Thieves.  A very nice drinkable wine.  Some vanilla, some nice fruitiness, without sweetness.  My kind of wine.

Since my last missive, I’ve done a little research, not much, but a little on Parkinson’s Disease.  I hadn’t looked at it in a few years.  Apparently they believe that genetics are involved, but more importantly genetics combined with a rural lifestyle seems to be the ticket.  My father had several siblings who also had Parkinson’s.  I figured we were doomed.  Come to find out that even with a first degree relative the chances of it passing on are only 5%.  If I had 95 siblings, I’d be feeling pretty comfortable right now.  When Dad first was diagnosed I had a conversation with my brother about the fact that so many of them had it.  I mused that there was going to be a correlation between bacon grease and Parkinson’s.  My brother demurred suggesting that the real cause was the fact that they spent so much time hitting each other in the head with shovels as kids.

It’s getting to be that time of year.  Four people were out sick yesterday, three today.  When I got hired on to this job it was over a week before I met everyone because they were all so sick.  I didn’t get the bug at all.  I’m taking my vitamins and some Airborne and hoping for the best.  The amount of stress that I’ve been under is really off the hook and while it doesn’t bother me that much, my body has a different take on all the turmoil.  My vitamin regiment consists of:

1 TB Liquid Health 40+

750 mg Glucosamine/Chondroitin

1200 mg Vitamin E

800 mg Advil 3X daily (ok, it’s my Vitamin A…the knee Doc has me taking that so I can walk)

Creatine and HMB on lifting days

What I’ve been eating:

Breakfast

1/2 whole wheat english muffin, 2 slices lean Canadian bacon and a slice of low fat cheddar

Mid morning

1 oz beef or turkey jerky

1 nonfat yogurt

Lunch

Tuna on ww sourdough

Snack

Apple and string cheese

Dinner

Chicken breast and either a roasted potato or brown rice or ww pasta and asparagus, grilled

Dessert

Riccota and blueberries or strawberries

Today’s weight 208, such a surprise.  The surprise is I found the Moron so I know the body fat measurement is 36.4.  Unfortunately one of those fast moving thick black spiders came running up the side of the box so that’s the last thing that got unpacked yesterday. 

There’s been no photojournalism because I can’t find the charger and the camera ran out of juice around five days ago.  Every night I look diligently for it, knowing it will turn up three days after I go out and buy a new one.

So in the interest of entertainment, here’s an old picture of Beau, just because.

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Some long overdue photojournalism

Here is the fresh paint on the living room…picture is about 10 days ago:fresh-paint.JPG

Here are the new ovens installed:

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Here’s the paint in the master bedroom, also about 10 days ago:

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And here’s Tile Guy, hard at work, he’s my Eldon:

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And here we go, leaving the other place. Notice the gorgeous weather. The guys moved fast because it was already 100 at 1:54p.m. when they finished:

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As Margo Channing said,

“Fasten your seat belts. It’s going to be a bumpy night.” And bumpy it’s been. First the water heater. Don’t ask me why you can buy one at Home Depot for $270, yet, it cost me $465 with First American’s Home Warranty. That was my part. God only knows what First American paid in addition to the $465. Then I got called on the carpet for being at the house while the water heater boys looked at the leaking hulk and said “Yup, es broke”. Apparently escrow officers require wookies now. Then I soaked the new bathroom, but that was a no harm no foul situation, just a time consuming mess to clean up. Then yesterday, I fired up my airless to paint the living room only to find out that my dear friend who I lent it to, didn’t clean it out like I told him to and it wouldn’t pump paint. So I go down to Wally’s Rentals, where I have rented equipment for 7 years. I rent their airless at $77 per four hours. Except it’s 2:45 and if I keep it over night the charge will be for four and a half hours. Don’t ask the logic to that. The machine is pretty clean and the guy says, bring it back like this or you have to pay the $65 cleaning fee. No worries, I’ll clean it the minute I’m done. So into the house I go, fire this bad boy up, prime it, spit out the water, or so I thought and flip it to run. It proceeds to spray paint and water all over the wall and ceiling. So I spray on the floor a little and it seems good to go, so I hose down the house. I finish at 4:09. I think woo hoo, I can have this thing back by five, I’ll just take it out side, put it in a bucket of water and clean it up. Not so much. Five o’clock came and went and I was still scrubbing. Six o’clock came and went and I was still scrubbing. At seven o’clock I put that bitch in the garage and went home. I could get up the next morning, bring some thinner over there and maybe get it cleaned, if not, the cleaning charge was $65 and if I kept at it like this, I was going to spend at least that to get help to get the rest of the job done. So I go back with the thinner and the paint is even worse and I can’t get it at all. That’s it, I’m done. At 7:55, right before Wally’s opens, I load the thing into my truck ready to pay the $65. I put the truck into gear and I guess I must of left the brake on, it won’t move. No, the brake’s off, I must be in 3rd gear, not 1st…no, I’m in first gear, but now we’re halfway down the block and the truck is listing to the left. $%^$&*%#. The truck has a flat tire. So I call AAA because believe it or not, I’ve never had a flat. Several slow leaks but never a flat. I have never taken the tools out of the truck that came with it in 1994. As a matter of fact, I’ve never operated the jack. Today is not the day to start and now I’m not going to have this thing back to Wally’s by the end of the grace period at 8:30. WRONG! Enter Dave from Concord Tow World. Dude’s got game. I helped with some minor stuff, then I slung the offending wheel into the back of the truck. Dave looks up and says “you’re a savage”. I’m taking that as a compliment. Dave got me to Wally’s by 8:26. So the guy behind the counter saunters out and looks in the back of my truck and slowly pulls the machine out of the truck. Yeah, I know it’s dirty just charge me the $65, it was hot yesterday and the damn thing dried before I got all the paint off. I did run it for two and a half hours and it was pumping out clear water for about an hour so I know the mechanism is clean, I just didn’t have the stuff to get the rest of it clean and I give up, charge me the $65. He’s a complete jerk to me. On one hand he’s treating me like a petulant child. Later I realize, he’s probably just a misogynist son of a bitch. Guys who’s pinnacle in life is to work at a equipment rental operation usually are like that. It’s $65 an hour and it’s going to take at least an hour and a half plus the lacquer thinner at $15 a can to clean this thing up. But the guy yesterday said $65 cleaning fee, not $65 an hour. Well, buddy, you got your $97. I hope the ownership at Wally’s enjoys it, because it is the last $242 I will ever spend with you. Had the guy said, well, anything other than what he did and not copped such an attitude, the situation could have been salvaged, but this guy was a complete ass. After seven years and two remodels, a smarter man would have softpedaled the situation and offered solutions. One would have been, hey, we’re going to charge you $97 for a kid to sit here with lacquer thinner. Would you like to run back to Bill’s Ace is the Place and get some lacquer thinner and clean it a little better so we don’t have to charge you? I probably would have paid the charge, but I wouldn’t be pissed and I would still do business with Wally’s Rentals. But this guy thought being a jerk to me because I’m a woman was a better course. I hope the Wally’s ownership sees this, because Steve, the manager of the Concord store, your a clown.

The fun didn’t stop there today. I actually tripped over my own two feet and went crashing to the ground in the house. Knocked the wind out of myself and everything. Still, at the end of the day: Photojournalism!

Beau waits patiently for Tile Guy to show up and bring his girlfriend Coco.

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The kitchen cabinets are coming along, and even getting closer to what I’m looking for

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Here’s the paint on the master bedroom. The color is called Quesy, for some bizzaro reason.

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And Tile Guy decided on his own little self to do something different in the shower stall. Ain’t it cool? The blue tape will come off when he finished grouting.

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Minor adjustments

The original plan was not to replace the water heater until spring.  Don’t ask me why spring was the anointed timeline.  It just was.  Was.  Sunday while I was feverishly working on the house, because my deadline is quickly approaching, I heard water running.  Strange.  The lawn is dead, the roses were watered yesterday and I’m the only one here.  Well, Beauregard was there, but he doesn’t have opposable thumbs, so he’s not running water.  I looked around, everything was off, so I went back to what I was doing.  Then what I was doing led me to the garage where water was pouring out of the bottom of the 1987 era water heater.  I’m so not paying for this, so I get a ladder, intent on turning off the water.  The gate snaps off into my hand.  Now I have no choice but to turn off the water at the house.  I decide that I’m going to run this through the Home Warranty company.  It’s an ancillary service that the conglomerate I work for provides.  My co-workers informed me yesterday that our Home Warranty company is the worst.  Yea! for us.  So today between 10-12 I will be over there, instead of at work, waiting for the home warranty company to hopefully replace the water heater with minimum cajoling from me.

So when I’m not drinking wine, I:

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Finished staining the dining room and:

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Had a new gate installed, pretty cool eh?  And I also had this little gem installed:

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This does two things.  1) it centers the shower controls that were off center and 2) installs one of those pressure bladders that means that someone else can be in the house, flush a toilet and I won’t go through the roof from the scalding I typically receive.  How cool is that.  I’ve put two coats of stain on the kitchen cabinets and I’m really not thrilled with how they’re coming out.  I will revisit that while waiting on the Home Warranty company.  I spoke with an old friend of mine yesterday about the project.  Her husband is a contractor and they just re-built a slew of houses in some podunk town in eastern Texas that were destroyed by Rita.  (yeah, there were two bad hurricanes that year) She asked me why I was rolling the paint when all but one room was going to be the same color.  “Hose it down” says Marcia.  Get one of those paper space suits, mask the windows and hose it down.  So I’m going to be taping off today, so I can hose it down tomorrow.
With all this nonsense going on, you’ll be shocked to hear that I’m still making it to the gym every day, and I am holding tough at 208.  I have changed my workouts and decided to not start a challenge until 9/3.  My workouts are now more typical.  I’m benching 135 for 4 sets of 10.  Deadlifting 135 for 4 sets of 10.  Doing a bunch of shoulder strengthening stuff and ab work.  Nothing too heavy, just enough so I don’t lose it while I’m remodeling this house.

Photojournalism

The Makaha Golf Club view

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The flower lei that the lady gave me at the powerlifting meet

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A ridiculous tee shot, yeah, I had to drop a ball on this one…but I did tee off from the black tees…in my defense.

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From the 3rd tee at Ko’olau, which is now apparently owned by the Presbyterian church…the whole thing, not just the 3rd tee box

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And the results of playing way too much golf…or shooting a 139 at Ko’olau

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OK, and most people fret over the damage caused by vacations. Besides that toe, which was debilitating and resulted in the purchase of flip flops, the damage was…this morning’s weigh in:

Weight 212

Fat 36.0

BMI 36.1

On the upside, my weigh-in for the meet on Friday night was 207.2. I’m stiff from playing golf and the meet and sitting on a plane for 5 hours yesterday. I had to get up and stretch numerous times, but it was easy, since I was the only person in my row in first class. The best $150 I spent on this vacation!

I occasionally check to see how I’m doing in the various powerlifting federations. I will be ranked in the top ten of the WABDL after last weekend’s performance for the dead lift. I’d have been in the top 20 if I had just pressed the weight once. I am attributing that failure to either the lack of a massage after arrival (which also occured in Chicago) and/or the vicious spider bite I got on my arm the previous Tuesday. It was so bad that Dr. Elkind refused to adjust the elbow. There was a lump the size of a golfball under the skin and it was hot to touch and firey red to look at. It didn’t shoot up my arm, ruling out black widows and my arm didn’t swell up to twice it’s size, ruling out the fiddleback. So it was just a mean mofo that jacked up my arm. I forgot about it, but the lump was still there when I went to play golf on Sunday. It could have been a contributor, but at the end of the day, I didn’t do what I needed to, and will have to go back to the drawing board. I do hold eleven AAU records, currently nothing in USAPL. I know I hold some records in Scott Taylor’s APA, but he has forgotten to renew his URL, so I can’t see how many right now. Yes, the Big Dog lifts.

The problem with my hotel was that it was so far away from civilization. Waianae was down the hill but there weren’t any restaraunts down there. At least nothing more than a couple of Micky-D’s, a couple of KFC’s a Murder King and a Taco Hell. So I would have to drive for real food. Really drive. Like an hour. On the upside, the night before the meet I ate at the Honolulu Ruth’s Chris. I couldn’t figure out where to park in Waikiki and gave up. I had my typical pre-meet meal, petite filet, potatoes au gratin and 1/2 Caesar. I sat next to a guy who worked for the Speaker of the House of the State of Hawaii. Unfortunately, I had just arrived and hadn’t figured much out, so we ended up talking about UC Davis, where he went to school and Bay Area nonsense. If I had gotten that guy on the third night, WOW what a conversation that would have been. The next night I walked from the Sheraton Waikiki, where the meet was held to Roy’s Hawaiian, Waikiki. I sat at the bar and they didn’t hassle me for my gym clothes. I appreciate that. I know I wasn’t dressed properly, so I felt sitting at the outside bar would help the situation. They were cool. I had the blackened ahi appetizer. They didn’t blacken it and I’ve had better…at Patrick David’s in Danville. The first glass of wine, actually taste, was disappointing, so I told the bartender that I was a pain in the ass when it came to wine and just pick a good one. It could be anything from a Sauvignon Blanc to a Cab, but it had to be good. So this kid picks the Roy’s blend, made specifically for Roy’s Hawaiian, from Santa Barbara. I look at him incrediously, but tasted it any way. It was very good and it went with my dinner nicely. I also ordered the blue crab cakes, very nice, much better execution than the ahi. I ordered the tomato, goat cheese salad. Very nicely executed with thin sliced tomatos, a pate of goat cheese and olives and a spritz of greens. Then the boys talked me into trying the chocolate souffle. A very nice dessert, served warm with fresh ice cream. All and all an enjoyable meal, thanks guys!