Wednesday, March 9, 2011

How Goes the War?

Life goes on, and so do the little skirmishes. Everyone has 'em. I'm not saying that mine are any worse than anyone else's. This is just a report from the field of battle.

One of the things I inherited from my mother was the occasional onset of gout. The spell I'm having now is just a charming foray into the world of pain, though nothing as bad as what she used to experience. My co-workers are bemused to see me hobbling around the place, but I tell them: "Ehh, if this is the worst thing that happens to me this year, I'll dance a jig!"

In fact, if the pain never went away for a whole year, and that was the worst thing that happened to me for that year -- y'know what? That's a deal I'd make!

As it is, I have some medicine left over from my last attack, which came as I was being freed from captivity in the hospital last year, where I had been admitted to dry out. So I'm sure this bout won't last much longer.

Much more concerning is that, now that the move is over, I seem to be packing weight back on just as fast as I lost it during those months. Towards the end of that process, I was beginning to look like an Auschwitz survivor with a pot belly. The past couple of days, my shirt collars have felt notably tighter.

This is not acceptable. I enjoy being able to fit into my old clothes, and I enjoy feeling like maybe someone that a woman just possibly maybe wouldn't look away from.

The question is, what to do about it? Joining a gym is equally unacceptable. Riding a bicycle to nowhere was never my idea of a productive or interesting time. I will not become one of those people. Nor do I play any kind of sport. The new house does have a basketball hoop and a pad for shooting from, but I look at that as a good thing to have for my friends to use when they come to visit. Not me, no-siree.

For one thing, I suck at it, and that suckishness caused me no end of humiliation in my school days. I will leave all sports for the monosyllabic, hyper-thyroid cases, thank you very much. Those people tormented me when I was young, and now they make a heckova lot more money than I do, but I will not waste one nanosecond of my life watching or playing that crap.

Walking to work during the warm weather months is a possibility, at least, maybe two or three times a week. Until then, eating adjustments seem to be the only solution -- and that's all-new territory for me.

The other gauntlet that's been thrown down in front of me happened just last night.

Seems that I keep learning lessons the hard way, and late in life. The one I learned last night is, "Never try to do anything new when you are pressed for time."

I needed and wanted to write my post about about Baby Jane, but another part of me wanted to put into motion a project that I had only just that day realized was within the realm of possibility.

All through childhood, my father shot home movies on 16mm film. Some years ago, I transferred these to VHS tape, and last year I transferred the VHS copies to DVD. This new computer presents possibilities to really do some good things with those digital files: including adding a soundtrack, re-editing them into their correct order, restoring them a bit, adding titles, and incorporating narration and still photos.

iMovie, which came as standard issue on the new Mac, has the ability, I believe, to do all of these things.  I thought it would be a cinch to just slap the DVDs into the computer and import my home movies into iMovie, and tried to do so before hopping online to work on my post.

Nuh-uh. Nothing doing. iMovie supports just about every type of movie file you can think of except DVD. I believe I know why they did this, but it's still a pain in the ass.

I thought, there has to be a way to do this. . . and started searching the interwebs for solutions. Thought I'd found them, too -- but after spending the time trying to make it happen, it didn't. I spent an hour fiddling and fussing and getting angrier -- and then just gave up. I had a post to write.

Since then, some more browsing has presented some other possible solutions. But, guess what? I ain't tryin' any of 'em until I have a big block of time to throw at it!

It seems that the more possibilities that technology offers, the more roadblocks it throws in your way. I've got a house to finish unpacking and decorating, who needs one more frustratin' thing blocking the road to victory?

At my age, I need to pick and choose my battles!

-- Freder.


  1. Doug:

    As one who's romantically involved with a nutritionist, I'd be remiss if I didn't remind you that there are some great dietary ways you can manage your weight & your general well-being. When in doubt, fruit & veggies are your friends.

    And as for exercise, how about swimming? Got a Y nearby? If you're not a joiner, then walking is great in almost any weather. I get out two, three times a day for a walk around town. Great for the body and for the soul.

    The important point is: You have options, and they're within your direct control. Take charge.



  2. As one of "those people" (who has been away from it too long, but who is making getting back, at some level or another, a priority), _and_ someone who hates "riding a bicycle to nowhere," I speak from experience when I say gyms have much more to offer than the picture you're painting. I spent my school years sucking at sports, too (my criticism of my phys ed classes: they wanted you to _play_ sports, but they never showed you _how_ to play sports. Dum-dum-dum-dumb!), but because I purposely select gyms that aren't populated with hyper-thyroid cases, I find the atmosphere to be neutral, I'm left alone, and when things are going good, I can look around and see I'm doing as well as most and better than many. I take satisfaction in that. I also find the gym is the one thing I do exclusively for _me_ -- not for family or friends or dayjob or nightjob or anybody but _me_. That becomes something precious.

    Think what you'll think and decide what you'll decide; it's your perogative. But you talk about learning lessons late in life -- here's a lesson just waiting for you that will help you live longer and feel more robust as part of the bargain. Up to you whether or not you choose to learn it.

    Tamam shud, effendi --


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