Tuesday, April 24, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 7

Well this week started off busier than a one legged man in an ass kicking contest.  Felt like the bad old days when the weekend schedule was overloaded on the regular.  This weekend (if the weekend started on Wednesday) was one of those.  12 cakes, five dozen cupcakes, two dozen cookies and a wedding tasting (another 4 dozen cupcakes) and I still think I am forgetting something.  No wonder I am feeling a little shell shocked.  Starting to develop jet lag from all the different sleep times I have during the week.  Nevertheless, missions accomplished.  Although the wedding tasting was starting to be a challenge.  See we usually have a little lead time to prepare.  Get the work area moved out and the living room set up for guests and display.  This time because there were multiple cakes on the table and sleep was in short supply by then, the timetable was severely shortened.  Like 15 minutes short.  Needless to say there was much that got moved, removed, hidden away or otherwise made "invisible".

The wedding tasting went well.  One of the attendees was my work buddy.  Another was also a previous customer.  Since they both were in the wedding party, they steered the Bride-to-be our way.  The big irony is that neither of the ladies who ordered from us previously had the opportunity to taste the cakes they bought.  So I pointed out to them that they finally had an opportunity to sample not only what they ordered, but some other tasty combinations.  A fantastic time was had by all because they were completely out of order.  Especially during the show an tell portion of the presentation where Meduim Willy and Little Willy showed up on the screen.  I, for a second, thought a male dancer walked into the room.  I told my work buddy that her crew was completely out of order, and that she could bring them by any time.  They totally made up for the previous wedding tasting.  That Groomzilla stole ALL the joy from the room.   And didn't like anything.  He decided to take over the cake selection himself.  Huzzah!!!  Just goes to show, not everyone likes what you do but there are others who will love it.  No use in mourning the loss of one you can't please, when there are others who are more than pleased with what you are doing for them.  They likely would have hung around a bit longer for more fun.  They traveled nearly a hundred miles to get to us.  Then someone mentioned shoe shopping.  Hey, if you travel that far, you might as well get it all in if you can.  So they took their act on the road!  To the shoe store!

Then there was another odd tasting the next day.  So my wife is looking at the dog's eye.  He seemed to have a bubble or some sort on his eye.  So I had to sucker him to sit still for inspection by rubbing him on his big head.  Small bubble confirmed, 24 hour observation period started.  Now I am allergic to pet dander.  Not anything really serious mind you.  But I have to take care not to touch the dog and touch my face without a good hand washing happening in between.  So off to the sink I go.  Now this particular canine is very spoiled and thinks that when ANBODY eats, he is supposed to also.  Not saying that is unusual.  But this one gets fed by my wife ALL the time.  Somehow that has translated to this strange "OH MY GOD THAT IS LIFE ITSELF!!!" reaction that he has with my right hand.  So I hear "You gotta be kidding me!  Honey come look at this!!"  So I stutter jogged to the living room to see.  I was met there by a dog.  One who was incredibly fascinated with, you guessed it, the contents of my right hand.  To the point he was retarding my forward progress from being in the way.  I exasperatedly exclaim "Seriously?!?!?  It is a bar of SOAP!!!"  Before the echo of the P even thought of fading away, my hand was empty.

Yes you guessed it, slow motion moment...
This fool had knocked a half bar of Ivory out of my hand.  It bounced once.  My wife yelled "NO!  NO KING!"  His big ass head dipped to the ground.  Not to sniff.  Because his big greedy ass mouth was open.  I realized he was far closer to that soap and I would not even dream of winning that race.  However, I WAS in between that soap and his stomach.  So I went for the throat!  Kinda of a weird thing to choke the shit out of your dog (you know you have wanted to do the same on occasion) to save his life.  Logic dictates that lack of air and an impeded ability to swallow would make one pause when attempting to gobble down a snack.  This fool however knows no logic and would not be deterred!  This sumbitch was chewing his ass off.  I was choking the shit out of him and my wife was smacking him on the nose.  No effect.  I let go because me doubling down at that point would only cause damage.  So he won.  That must have been the best tasting bar of soap EVER.  Fortunately a quick internet search revealed that there was nothing toxic or really harmful in a bar of soap.  But there are consequences.  First he had a rough afternoon while digesting half a bar of Ivory soap.  Second, he will have to be reeducated on the perils of food stalking me, especially when I have something in my hand.  Third, he may never get a snack from me again (angry talk, we will be doing Dorito's catch next week).  Fourth, and probably the most harsh, he has been rechristened Sir Bubbly Butt!!! and Bubblebutt.  And if he starts farting bubbles, guaranteed you will see him competing for thousands of dollars in that video!
As I sit here typing this, I am smelling the backup hotel soap on my hands right now.  Not happy about that...

Back!  Had to open a NEW bar of Ivory and then go taunt him with it before going to wash my hands once more.

Also I finally added some pictures to the Facebook page.  My customers from March of 2017 are happy now.  They can see their pictures now.  I guess I don't have to wonder why we are over a year behind on picture posting.  There was no time.  And I posted the last updates from February 2017 back in November.  I gotta do better.  And that webpage...  That is a whole different project.  Maybe I will work on that after I get the Facebook page caught up to this year.  Which will be after the business card redesign for the now empty boxes...

Sunday, April 15, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 6

So this week is starting off to be a snoozer.  Work, eat, sleep, work, sleep.  So much for Saturday.  Maybe the weather had something to do with my rundown feeling all day.  Maybe it didn't.  I just didn't have that get up and go.  Didn't have the desire to do.  And felt like I had been moving furniture the day before. 

I guess that is a symptom of being stuck between two worlds.  On the one hand, punch the clock for the man and deal with escalating and unnecessary demands.  On the other, trying to spin up to go at it as the officer of a company with my name on it.  I mentioned three different schedules in my last post.  These are really throwing me off.  They contribute to the tiredness I feel more often than not.  They contribute to the additions to the do-list more than the subtractions.  Stuff like all those cake photos taken but not posted.  The cleaning needed to make room for my bike and mag trainer setup.  The business card redesign.  I guess since I AM sitting here, I can get some progress happening on two of those projects... 

Especially since there is no good reason for me to drive out into THIS DAMN ICE STORM!!!  Come on already Ma Nature!!!  It is the middle of April!!!  The fun of playing "Sometimes It Snows In April" had worn off over a week ago with the two days of white precipitation.  But nearly 70 degrees on Thursday and ICE today?  Well, get it out of your system!  I don't want any sad weather when cruise time comes around!

Lemme be more productive.  See y'all later!

Friday, April 13, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 5

So I met my newest Great-nephew today. I swear it was like holding my father on my lap. Actually he is a combination of my father and his big sister. But mostly Dad is the experience you get when looking at him. And strangely enough it was a happy and sad experience at the same time. Nothing is wrong with nephew. Let's get that out of the way. But I was happy because there is a new one. A whole new little person to spoil and interact with.
And it means I kinda get to see what my dad, and to an extent me, looks like growing up. The sadness came when I was drawing parallels between the two. The same haircut, the same facial expressions, the same gestures. I guess it was the gestures that got me. Him doing baby things at baby speeds. Dad now also does some of those same gestures at baby speed. That last realization was a little bittersweet.

Nothing like dealing with aging and your parent's mortality to zoom your mind in on the problems you yourself are experiencing and that you really don't have that long before that is your own experience. In fact, I had spent a couple of hours with him a few days prior. He was about to climb the walls. He has been in rehab lately. I haven't really been available to him because of schedule changes and transportation issues. I feel bad because he really could use the company. But adulting happens to those of us who chose to grow up. The biggest problem is that the person who runs the switchboard leaves at 8 p.m.  My own process usually runs into the nine or ten o'clock hours on the regular.  So I am not usually settled down enough to talk.  This tends to cause conflict with my conflicts.  I am going to make an effort to be available a little earlier in the day. The schedule is somewhat hectic now that I am running on three different schedules during the week.  But time is one thing that is not on my side here.

I need to do better.  For the past and the future. 

Friday, April 06, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 4

I have been finding myself not really liking the position I am in at 50.  Lately, especially in the last week, I have been thinking about how and why that is.  I was supposed to chronicle all that over this last week.  That is one of my problems.  I was supposed to get busy on getting busy on this project among others.  So instead of posting on Saturday and updating through the week, I am posting on Friday.  Technically still in the correct week.  But it is sliding a bit.  I gotta stop that.  First you get two posts on Saturday, one of them for the previous week.  Next you get one a week late with a promise to get the current week done before the week is up.  Then you get a week or two late with no promise.  Then once a month, for one month.  Then...crickets.

Circling back to what I STARTED to say...

I ran across this video of Will Smith earlier in the week.  It spoke to me because of the things that have been on my mind.  He was basically saying that there should be nothing stopping you from achieving your dreams.  And that the biggest hurdle to the achievement of those goals is your own mindset.  I have heard the old "Change your mind, change your circumstances" thing.  I guess the way he said it dug deep.  I started thinking of those dreams.  Looking at my circumstances.  I see what he means.

The biggest issue is that I am a human stop sign at times.  I am very much experience the adventure.  Yet at the same time I am VERY much risk adverse.  I'm sure you can see the problem here.  When it isn't very risky I'm all for the adventure! Try it out, see what happens. Enjoy the experience, learn a thing or two. But if there is something to lose, the cost/benefit calculator comes out with the quickness. I'm just as likely to come up with reasons why not as I am for reasons why.

I had more but that leeched out of my head with the start of work time.

But the short version is that I need to get out of my own way.

More on that later...

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 3

Yeah.  I know I said Saturday was my posting schedule.  But here we are again on a Wednesday.  Oops...

So I got the old girl back on the road again.  The transmission is still slipping a little.  There are a couple of things that can be tried for that.  Not a deal breaker.  The new battery has her starting up like a champ!  I am not concerned about being stranded due to power issues now.  Now... for the other stuff... Well, different story.  The tires were replaced in the last 18 months.  They don't match but they are all meaty and full of air.  I will make sure to install a set of matching NEW treads after I get the mechanicals straight and before I start working on the visuals in earnest.  Up next is suspension.  My suspension components are OEM.  Not bragging because the car was manufactured in 1994.  So you can probably imagine what the ride is like if you have ever had a jalopy of your own.  BUT the bobblehead ride HAS TO GO!  As you probably know, cars work better when the tires stay in contact with the ground.  I am not confident that is happening with at least 1 (okay all) of the wheels at this point.

Once the slipping and bouncy suspension are fixed, I can be confident it will travel the distances I need it to go.

Still not happy that I need to go through all these changes to travel 75 miles to do the exact same thing I can accomplish from my bed.  But at least now I don't need to bum a ride to get groceries and such.  Oh yeah, I guess I left out the part where the tag was expired.  And the other vehicle needing repairs had it blocked in.  But now free!  Free I say!!!

Speaking of irritations with things that we need to do to eat.  So I found myself thinking STRONGLY of investing in the future of OURS instead of the future of THEIRS.  I kinda have a love/hate relationship with OURS partly because of THEIRS.  But on Monday it was strongly in my mind that OURS was the correct path.  Seems I was being slightly prophetic since THEY have decided to change out performance goals in such a way that pretty much eliminates the idea of paid vacation.  So now we basically have to make up the hours we take for our time off.  This also happened later on Monday.  Really?  So now I pretty much have to work a full 52 weeks PLUS enough weeks to cover my vacation time?  I am so done.

More later!

Thursday, March 22, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 2

So I started this week off NOT drinking all I intended on drinking for St. Paddy's day.  Which was also supposed to be my spill over Saturday for missed drinking for last week.  Oh well.  More for later I guess.

Sunday was a nice day.  I decided to overcome laziness and Winter and blah and "I'll wait until the temperature is stable" and fuck it.  I did manage to do just that.  Which is saying something because that is a pretty strong cast of characters.  Especially fuck it...  In spite of them I logged the first official mile of 2018.  That's right y'all.  Cycling season has started!

And in another first, I got chased by a dog!  What the hell?  What is this saying about my 2018 season when there is a dog in the first mile?  Hell it wasn't even the first mile!  I hadn't even made it off the block!  Not that it was a major dog incident.  It was some Chihuahua mix.  Needless to say, I wasn't feeling much in the way of mortal peril.  The thing barely made it up to the foot on the down stroke.  So if I kept the foot on the upstroke side she was just practicing.  So I had a little fun with it.  I said "You're not gonna catch me.  You're not gonna catch me.  You're not gonna catch me!".  And I accelerated slightly to keep it's little legs working hard.  I think the cat that had been cornered and was being terrorized was happy I breezed by, because I seemed to be more tempting than the cat.

Just as I was about to turn the corner and leave the little thing in the dust, I hear a voice.  "Please don't run, she is only going to chase you!".  My immediate thoughts were as follows:

  • Chase, yes.  Catch, no way in hell!!!
  • Lady you don't have to worry about that.  Kinda hard to catch what you can't see.
  • Even at 50 AND having not been on since October, my sprint will still quickly destroy any hopes it will have of it being a good chase.
  • Not really my problem... Meep Meep!
Then I heard "It is only going to make it harder for me to catch her.  Can you come this way and help me sir?"  I think it was the sir that slowed me up.  Because I looked back at her to see the cane she was walking on.  And I remembered how much fun catching my idiot dog when he was running loose.  So I checked the traffic to make sure somebody wasn't gonna run me down, and executed a u-turn.  Sure enough the little terror turned with me.  I rode slowly back toward the lady so she could convince the fur ball to give up the shenanigans.  It almost worked too.  You could see the dog was considering running back up on the porch.  Even paused a little.  I know I only imagined hearing it, but the dog definitely said "fuck that" to that plan.  Off in another direction for more terror.  I guess having people chase you is more fun to dogs than chasing cats and bicycles.  After that the lady basically said "Fuck it, you will be out here until my husband gets home.  He can chase you!"

I was rolling inside!  Hey I did my part.  I got the little cuss to the porch steps.  Sealing the deal was someone else's job.

The rest of the ride went without incident.  I remembered how wonderful it was to ride my old Cannondale.  So wonderful in fact that it had me believing untruths about my conditioning.  Then I remembered that strength gives out as endurance wanes.  I can only feel for all these people who I will be dragging around the area over the next few months.

Shifting gears... (heh, heh)
I generally do not enjoy being compelled to drive 75 miles to do something I can do from my bed.  Especially not multiple times a week.  But such is my life.  There were a couple of small benefits to having done so.   One day lunch was provided.  This was along with meeting the leadership on my current project.  The other was an encounter that is making me smile right now...  The set up: Me heading slowly towards the stairway so that I can generate some awake.  I am overtaken by a lovely woman in an above the knee skirt, right at the choke point.  Since I didn't want to hold her up, I deferred access.  I seemed to have lucked up into access to more than just some calves.  Those thighs were wonderful and flawless and thick.  I had not previously realized just how long those legs were.  Seemed like they went right up to heaven for more than one reason... (it was a long starway also...)  I only hope I managed to maintain enough composure to not be seen noticing.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

52 at Fifty: Week 1

Happy Birthday to me!!!!!
I am now Fif-ty
The AARP card is coming
And I'm drinking Remy!

March 10:
This taste of the Remy goes out to three very special people:
Mom, I wish you could have made it with me this far.
Dad, this is to you too. I will have to visit more because without you and mom there is no me.
My Wife, in the trenches everyday, we share the struggle.  We shall share a drink too when you are awake.

You other important people will have to wait until the next glass is filled.