Keep the faith…

Have you seen Bagdad Cafe? The 1987 film stars an unknown Marianne Sägebrecht along with Jack Palance (and others) in what is ultimately a cute and heartwarming tale. It’s also known as Out of Rosenheim in the foreign market.

If y’all haven’t seen it, I do recommend it. It won quite a few awards and yet is vastly underrated.

But the movie is not, actually, what this post is about.

The start of it though…is.

The beginning of this film is one of the most poignantly sad things story-tellers could dream up. One dismisses it as a necessary piece of fiction required to set the rest of the story in motion.

It’s easy to dismiss. Surely it wasn’t reality. It simply couldn’t be.

Or so I used to believe. Then I saw it for myself.

Humans can really suck.

***

Day before surgery. What I SHOULD be doing is hanging out at home, trying to mentally prepare myself for the physical ordeal I’m about to face…or at the least, trying to get a few things done while I actually have the use of my left arm.

What I’m actually doing is banging around east Texas, miles from home, dealing with somebody else’s problems. It’s a habit I’ve gotten into.

Errands ur…erranded, I’ve headed for the interstate to make some time towards home. With any luck, I can salvage a leisurely evening with my wife.

Approaching the I-state I already knew that plan was out. The westbound traffic was at a standstill. Hundreds of trucks, thousands of cars. Not a good thing when you’re 50 miles from the nearest normal traffic jam.

“The way is shut…” Crud.

I hit the intersection anyway. A combo McDonald’s and Pilot Truck Stop stood there, and knowing east Texas and my likely detours around I-20 to get back to the metro-mess, I figured it was time to fuel the car, drain the bladder, and add some much needed caffeine to the mix.

As I crossed the bridge I noted my initial impression was correct. I-20 was a no-go. Cars and trucks on the westbound side. Dead stop. Horizon to horizon.

I hit the pumps, fueled the car, and pulled up to a parking space.

The lady exiting the McDonald’s caught my attention. Heavy-set. Chubby even. Middle aged, maybe a little older. Cheerful face. Big purse over her shoulder, and carrying a cardboard drink holder with two drinks and two ice-cream cones. She stepped out as I pulled in. She was looking around with a cheery smile on her face.

Her face registered momentary confusion as she looked around the lot carefully. Her smile dimmed but still there, she looked again, and then her face fell. A story was told in that instant. If a picture’s worth a thousand words, then this was ten thousand.

…and I read every damn one of them.

Hopes dashed. Deep down she was expecting it. But whether she had reason or not, she’d held some hope. Women are often like that. It is the best part of them. It’s the part that keeps the world sane. It’s often to their detriment though.

She knew what happened.

And in that moment, so did I. At least the important bits. My grip tightened on the wheel.

Damn…

I got out of the car, a question on my lips, already knowing the answer. Already knowing the story that was coming. Already knowing the rest of my day was changing.

I asked it anyway. I didn’t have any choice. “Are you okay?”

***

The short of it is this: Her husband left her there. They were having problems and took a trip to work them out. He was going to drop her at her relatives in Dallas for a week while they pondered the details of the inevitable but so far amiable coming separation.

When they encountered the traffic jam, they eventually inched their way to the truck-stop for a much needed break. He suggested she go get some drinks and such while he finished gassing the car, and he’d meet her, basically, in the space I had just occupied. She’d added the ice-cream cones as a special treat, just to make the day better.

He left her there. Dumped her 90 miles from her destination, with the contents of her purse and nothing more. Twelve dollars cash and no credit cards. Not even a phone.

He had one. She knew the number. Scarcely believing what I’m sure she already knew, I called it. He had words for me. They were done. The westbound traffic was too much trouble. Eastbound was clear. He was going home. She could make her own way.

She saw it in my eyes as I hung up the phone. Read the disappointment I was feeling in humanity in general. The disbelief, depression, and cold anger that were crashing down on me even then.

Her tears streaming, she still smiled at me and touched my cheek. “It’s okay,” she tried to laugh, “you want an ice-cream? It’s melting…”

It’s a simple matter after that. I know my way around east Texas. Easy detour was US 80…some twenty-ish miles north of the I-state. I’m headed for Dallas. She has a destination there and she has an extra ice-cream.

Seems like an even trade to me.

It’s depressing though…that there’s a male out there that would do this. Male. Not man. Decades of marriage, and he dumps her at a fricken truck stop. I mean…he had to have loved her once…at least a little. Right?

Her last words to me as I dropped her at her relatives’ house, despite her situation, were for me. To help me. To make me feel better.

That smile. “It’s okay Dan. Keep the faith.”

***

Guys, let me be clear…short term or long term. Relationship woes or not. Insurmountable problems or just drifting apart. You may need to be apart. You may be done. Finished. Kaput. It might be your fault. It might be hers. All that happens. Life is messy. People are complex.

But dumping her at a truck stop?

No. That gets really simple, really fast.

The circumstances don’t matter. A man…Owes. Her. Better.

Be better.

…and keep the faith.

I’ll see you on the road.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

Posted in Blog, Road Stories | Leave a comment

Two years of leg day?

Some of y’all may recall that a lifetime of hard work, neglect of my body and health, combined with more recent efforts to recover the same, and culminating in an awkward fall, resulted in some significant shoulder injuries.

The word “catastrophic” was used by at least two surgeons I consulted (who couldn’t do anything positive for me).

Mostly by luck I found a passionate, talented, and determined artist/surgeon to attempt to tackle these difficult repairs.

In mid-January I had the surgery on my right shoulder (the worst one) to correct a couple of massive, complete tendon tears (with retraction and muscle atrophy), as well as smaller tears as well. Before the surgery I couldn’t even lift my arm. The surgeon was successful beyond expectations and got everything reattached as it should be.

I’ve spent the last 7 months applying a precision amount of pain (rehabbing) to that shoulder. It’s not, by any means done, but it IS functional. Realistically I’ve got another year of DAILY work before it will be back to where it should be.

Scary words. I’m pretty sure they charge by the syllable.

Meanwhile, the LEFT shoulder, in which “massive tearing”, “full width and full thickness tearing”, and lots of other scary terms apply, has been reminding me what unhealthy pain feels like and severely cramping my style.

Surgery is scheduled on that one quite soon.

The aftermath of that will be 6-8 weeks in a sling. NO working out or physical labor during that time, as it risks jarring the tendons or a fall/etc and they need that time to begin the healing process.

Then there’s 6-ish months of rehab, and another YEAR past that of work, and curtailed upper body work all the while.

My injuries rate high on the severe scale, and as I understand it, tendons are slow to heal, graft, or strengthen due to the very restricted blood supply.

If I re-tear them there’s not much left to work with. There’s a 30% re-injury rate in the 1st year with this sort of thing. If I make it the year, I should be fine for life (yanno, if I don’t abuse myself again).

Taking the time to do it right is as frustrating as it is mandatory.

Given the magnitude of my overall fitness problem I am working to correct and the rare juxtaposition of events/circumstances that afforded me the opportunity and means to tackle the issue (at the time the motivation to do so manifested), this frustration combines with a very strong feeling that I’m running out of time.

The curtailed activity hinders more than just my fitness plans. Some of y’all may recall my Old Victorian project…80% of that house is “over my head”…that’s a real problem when ya can’t work overhead…

Intellectually, I know I’ve got this…I’ve maintained my weight despite the severely curtailed exercise regimen this year (much of the time I DO spend exercising is spent on shoulder rehab, which while critically important, does not overly tax much of the rest of my body). I’ve even managed to improve my endurance cardio performance and other things…but I’m impatient to “get back to it” as a main focus.

I’m SO close to my overall goal…and this feels like a failure.

…and I’ve got another year+ of it ahead.

Lot’s of “leg day” at the gym I guess 🙂

Intellectually, yeah, I’ve got this.

Emotionally, I’m not so sure. It’s hard NOT to be discouraged.

Ah well…pre-surgery jitters for the most part…the degree of success of the procedure is not certain, there’s a lot of damage to correct, but I’ve aligned all the factors I can to get the best result possible.

…and sometimes that just has to do.

Left: 427 pounds, struggleing to fit in 60″ jeans. Right: 239 pounds.

I’ll see you on the road.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

Posted in Weight Management | Leave a comment

Payback’s a bitch…oh…wait…that’s not right…

I live and work in a very large metro area…the Dallas area in point of fact. Locally known as the “Metroplex”, or in our more irritable moments, the “Metromess”. With more than 100,000 new folks a year moving to the area, it has grown to encompass a good dozen surrounding cities and simply absorbed most of the smaller towns as suburbs. We also call it “DFW”…as the two major cities, Dallas and Fort Worth, have merged into one large metropolitan area.

It’s so large, in fact, that I can depart on the east side of the metroplex with a full tank of gas on The Dragon (my Valkyrie), and require a fuel stop before I exit the west side.

You can get…or do…pretty much anything you could want to. A frantically busy and happening place.

There’s a dark-side though. The short of it is there is a significant chunk of the population, probably around 3 million people, within 100 miles of me that would con me out of my last dollar, run my ass off the road without a second thought, or maybe even shank me for the $8 bucks in my wallet.

Those 3 million all have a story. They all have a spiel. I encounter a LOT of these people. I work in and commute to the downtown Dallas area and that means seldom a day goes by where I don’t get to hear a sales pitch, am nearly run off the road, or endure some other attempt to deprive me of my life, money, or time.

I DO give to charities, and individuals when I have the resources and feel I can make a difference, but you get a feel for these things. Mostly, if they have a ready sales speech, approach you directly, and/or can’t let you get a word in…they’re the professional con or beggar type, and my money generally doesn’t go there. Most folks put off a “vibe” and over the years and with very good instincts, I’m adept at picking that up.

If there’s a bad vibe…or no vibe, or even a doubt, or I’m tight on resources (rule #1, NEVER make yourself a victim), I do not help. I’d be on the street myself, inside a week, if I just gave a couple bucks to anybody that asked.

So, yeah, I can be cold-hearted. It’s MY money. I traded part of my life for that stuff.

So, yeah, three million people in close proximity that would take my last dollar should I let them. It can be depressing.

But what that means…and what I have to continually remind myself of…is that on any given day that leaves around 14 million more folks in that same 100 mile area that are basically decent people, just trying to get by, doing what regular people do.

***

Little Rivet…the grumbly little Chevy thing…had a low tire yesterday. Since I just checked ’em a few days ago, this means I’ve got a pointy thing incorrectly stored or some other issue that requires correction.

With an impending surgery, a frantic work/etc schedule, and Da ‘Altima the Sequel stuck in the body-shop getting de-crunchafied, I don’t need this.

I need this like I need…well…like I need a hole in a tire.

Now, I’ve been in this area a while (good gawd…we’ve owned this house over 25 years) so I have a couple “go-to” tire/auto guys for when I can’t do the work myself. They’re generally not “cut rate” on pricing, but I know they’ll at least be reasonable, do good work, and usually not rip me off.

I’d finished a workout, a had a few minutes before I had to leave for work, so I zoomed by the closest folks I use.

Two minutes later:
“Tire’s shot. You took a nail in the inner sidewall.”
“Of course it is.”
“We don’t carry that brand, but we’ve got that size in a similar rating and tread. $95 including tax, mount/balance and stem.”
“Go for it.”

It happens. My vehicles are used for what we need ’em for. Miles happen. So, stuff does too.

Ride ’em hard, fix ’em when they break.

Little Rivet in particular sees some hazardous duty…picking up building supplies, working in the field, disposing of debris at the dump, and the like. Tire poking kind of work. I guess I should be glad it doesn’t happen more often.

Fifteen minutes later:
“Done.”
“What’s the damage?”

He hands me an invoice, and I scan it while reaching for my wallet. I pause, the final total out is “$0.00”

I indicate the total, “What?”
“You remember that kid? Trey?”
“No shit?”
“Yep.”
“We’ll I’ll be.”
“Yeah. He said to tell you he’ll pay it forward too. You saved his life or some shit like that.”
“Heh. Nothing that dramatic I think. Glad it worked out. See ya next time?”
“Yep.”

***

Flashback a couple months or so….

Screaming out of the driveway, headed to work, I do my typical pre-flight on The Dragon while already piloting the big cruiser down the alley.
“This thing got brakes?”
*taps both brakes*
“Check. Tires?”
*does a couple “S” turns, glances at TMPS*
“Check. Even got TWO of ’em. Any gas in this thing?”
*glaces at trip meter*
“Hmmmmm.”

With a tank that holds 4.3 gallons to reserve and 5.3 to bone dry, this is a common occurrence on this machine. My rather enthusiastic throttle habits add to the issue. Y’all don’t think I ride this monster to be particularly restrained, do ya? A quick pit-stop at the gas station just before the highway was in order.

As I pulled in I passed the air/water service area. Young guy there in a mid-2000 Toyota sedan was airing up a tire. I noted this only out of habit or in passing. Normally I’d have forgotten it as soon as I departed the station.

Except…as I was fueling I saw him finish and get back in the driver’s seat. When I finished fueling and started to depart I noticed the car was still there. I couldn’t see the driver though…or the driver’s seat…it had been laid back apparently.

I idled by. Yep. He was in there. Lying back, hands over his face. Something was up. I dampened the tunes, circled back, and pulled close beside his driver’s door. Still astride the Valk, I tapped on his window.

“You okay?”

He sat up quickly. He’d been crying. That stopped fast. It doesn’t matter the circumstances. In this world we guys know we aren’t allowed those moments. For most of us those lessons were not subtle.

I pretended not to notice.

The window rolled down.
I repeated myself. “You okay?”
“Yeah,” a pause, “well, maybe.”
I killed the engine and popped my helmet off. It was hot and I had an inkling this conversation would take a few minutes. Now I could hear his front tire leaking. The one he’d been airing up. “Sounds like your tire’s bad.”
“Yeah. I don’t know what to do.”
“Got a spare?”
“It’s bad too. It shredded a hundred miles ago.”

Details I’d already noticed subconsciously resolved themselves in my mind. He was a working man/kid. Farmers tan and lean build indicated construction or such. He was traveling, based on the stuff piled in his back seat. Probably moving. There was a well worn tool-belt on the passenger floorboard and a plastic toolbox in the seat.

More details. His car was probably okay but more tires than just the one I could hear leaking had problems. I could see cords on the rear one.

He had a solid…vibe.

“I know a good tire place…” I turned and pointed across the intersection, “…right there.”
“I just put my last $10 in the tank.”
Yeeks. I thought a moment, maybe we could plug it…and he might get lucky on the cords.
“Where are you headed?”
“Port Arthur. I’ve got friends and a new job there.”

Long familiarity with my state kicked in and I almost laughed. “Dude. You’re not gonna make it on those tires. OR on $10 worth of gas.”
“I get pretty good mileage.”
“Yeah but,” I did a rough mental calculation, “that’s what? Four gallons?” I eyed the car, “Maybe a hundred-twenty, thirty miles to empty? You’re more than 300 miles away still,” I nodded at his car and repeated the obvious again, “…and those tires aren’t gonna go anywhere near that far anyway.”
I think he knew that, but his face fell.
“You got friends or family around here?”
“No. Hey, do you know where I can get some work? Just for today? I’m an electrician.”
“Not off-hand but there’s plenty around. We’re in a boom here. You said you have a job waiting?”
“Yeah. I start tomorrow if I can make it.”
“Hold that thought. I need a Coke.”

I glanced at his wheel, dismounted the Valk, and headed into the store.

On my way I looked up a number on my phone.
“Tire center.”
“Daniel Meyer. You have any good take-offs? 195/65/15 or close?” This is not a used tire place, but sometimes they have some good take-offs that haven’t yet been sent to the used market. Since this is not their ‘bread and butter’ and they don’t pay anything for the takeoffs, a deal can sometimes be made.
“Hey Daniel. Hang on.”

It’s not a small gas station. One of the “one stop shopping” kind of places. And I’m shopping with my phone in my ear. I feel positively metropolitan. Gad.

“Daniel?”
“Yeah?”
“We have a good set of 4, 65% tread, I can do $75 plus mount/balance, but that’s not a size for any of your vehicles we have listed. You get something new?”
“No. It’s for a kid that’s stranded. He’s kind of desperate. I’m buying. Can you do better?”
“Stranded huh. For you? Okay, sure. How about $10 and you pay mount/balance?”
“For the set?”
“Yep.”
“Damn! Now you’re just being awesome! We’ll be right there.”

Sometimes it pays to be a long term customer.

I finish my selections and hand the clerk my card. She bags it all and wishes me a nice day.

Outside I find the stranded dude standing uncertainly beside his car, eyeing the offending tire. Age-wise I believe he’d be called a Millennial, or perhaps “Generation Y”…except with his lean build and apparent work ethic he doesn’t fit the mold usually conjured up by those terms.

I find this true for most generalities. Why we continue to create broad generalizations on groups and try to cram people into their niche instead of looking at individuals and their actions/merits I’ve no idea.

I waggle my phone at him. “Problem solved. I’m Daniel by the way.”
“I’m Trey. Problem solved? You know where I can find some work?”
I reach in my bag, hand him a bottle of water and a breakfast sandwich.

Pro-tip: You can never go wrong with a breakfast sandwich…

“Well, you said you’ve already got work. I just found a way to get you there.”
He looks uncertain. “I can’t pay for anything, and I can’t leave my car. It’s all I’ve got left.”
“Yeah, I got that.” I hand him another one of my purchases, a prepaid Visa gift card. “There’s $50 on that for gas. Pay inside, not at the pump or it’ll end up with a hold on it. Should get you there…and if you’ll go right over there…” I point at the tire place again, “they’ve got some used tires for you. I’ve already covered it.”
“Seriously?”
I just raised an eyebrow at him.
“I don’t know when I can pay you back…”
“I’m not a bank. Not making a loan. You know the term, ‘Pay it forward’?”
“Yes.”
“There ya go.”
“Why?”
I eyed the worn tires. “I’ve been there…exactly there.” and left it at that.

I hopped on the Valk. I pulled a quick stop at the tire store to give ’em my card…and the box of donuts I’d grabbed at the gas station, “For being awesome!”

Pro-tip: You can never go wrong handing donuts to tire guys…

I also asked if they’d see if they could do something about his spare. Mumbling around mouths full of donuts they assured me they would.

And that, as they say, was that. I never expected to hear anything else about it, and could only hope it did some good.

I felt good about it anyway. Sometimes that has to be enough.

***

Back in the present, I eyed my new tire on Little Rivet and pondered the world around me.

People can suck, sure…

…but sometimes they’re pretty cool.

I’ll see you on the road.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

Posted in Ramblings | Leave a comment

I thought so too…

The guilt was running strong this morning apparently. That is to say…the massive fitness center had lots of folks. Unusual for the hours I usually attend.

A lot of ladies were part of the mix. That’s not terribly unusual…the mix is close to 50/50 at my normal “O-stupid-thirty”…but the sheer number of folks attending was 4 or 5 times usual for this hour.

I’m not sure what the occasion was. Last I’ve seen it this busy was the 1st two weeks after New Years resolutions.

Still plenty of room…but the atmosphere was different.

Several of the guys, and more than a few of the ladies were…for lack of a better term…”flirty”. Wandering around, meeting new faces, chatting, and all but dating. Some managing to flex, pump, or show off various assets, mysteriously without breaking a sweat.

I would guess half the folks on the floor today weren’t there for the workout. Unusual.

Most of the guys in this classification were advertising their affiliation with the various fire-fighting organizations in the area via tight logo t-shirts and a few embroidered ball caps. The ladies were all in immaculate and form fitting body-suits. “Perfect hair” seemed to be the defining characteristic of that part of the group.

Normally the people that make it in at O-Stupid-Thirty are “on a mission” and while many of us exchange greetings or passing nods, most get there, get to work, and get out. The ladies aren’t there to chat, and the men for the most part are courteous and focused enough to be the same way.

But a lot of those folks today were leaving out the “get to work” part.

Now…I “date” several times a week…but I have an advantage…my dates are with my wife of 28 years and there’s little awkwardness, posturings, preening, or misunderstandings required in the preliminary process.

“Hey woman, want to go to [movie, dinner, other venue, Hoboken, bed, ride, crime spree, some unlikely combination of all, etc]?

“Sure! Let’s go!”

So, yeah, pardon me if I’m a bit slow to recognize “flirting”…but even my oblivious brain started to wonder after the cute young thing followed me from the cardio theater (she took the treadmill next to mine despite the 20 other vacant ones about), through a quick machine circuit (working the rehab on the shoulder), and then all the way across the 100,000 square feet to the squat racks.

Sure, I can be a bit slow…but give me a break…at this unholy hour NOBODY flirts…hell…I’ve ONLY had one cup of coffee, and most cute young things don’t flirt with the fattest guy in the room anyway. I’ve yet to come to terms with the fact that I may not be “that” guy anymore.

I still see the fat guy in the mirror…and yep, I DO still have a ways to go. Maybe I’m not THAT guy anymore…but I’m not that OTHER guy either…yanno…the ones that could send ship-to-ship visual signals just by flexing their pecs…yet. Hey, I have hopes…I DO know Morse code…

So yeah, she was chatty, and didn’t seem to want advice, and subtle hints (like mostly ignoring her, sticking in my headphones, and working hard, grunting, and sweating) were ignored. When she asked what I did for a living and seemed fascinated that should have been a clue…yes, my job is intricate, engaging, and complex…but fascinating? Heh. HELL to the Nope.

But I still didn’t quite recognize flirting. Maybe she was new to the fitness scene and nervous about it. Maybe (I thought in my darker broodings), cute young thing needed a father figure…or gawd help me…a grandfather figure.

But flirting? With me? No.

Well maybe.

There was NO doubt however, after I finished my workout, hit the locker room to grab my bag, and then left the building headed for my ride.

Little Rivet“…the ancient, rusty-white, grumbly, beat up, but faithfully decrepit S-10 was the mode of transport this morning…one of the Valks (Stitch) is down with fork seals, the other (The Dragon) was extremely low on gas (didn’t want to mess with that till I left for work), Da ‘Altima the Sequel is getting un-destructo-crunched at the body shop…and Gozer the radioactive green Jeep is the wife’s ride.

Little Rivet…a pox apparently.

I’d lost her at the locker room…but Cute young thing followed me out to my truck…

I had the headphones in and the tunes rocking so didn’t notice until I reached it, turned, and stuck the key in the door to unlock it.

Cute young thing stops with her hands on her hips, strikes a pose, and says, “Well shit. I thought you wuz something.” Then she turned on her heel and huffed off in a snit back to the building.

I stood there a good thirty seconds with my key stuck in the door of the decades old truck, grocking out what the heck had just happened.

Then I burst out laughing and said under my breath, (cute young thing was long-gone), “Well shit lady, I thought I wuz something too.”

Apparently Little Rivet didn’t meet with her approval. I wonder what would have happened if I’d been piloting something that did? Would she have leapt in with me? Just how would I explain THAT to the wife?

“Hey babe! Look what followed me home! I just found it in a parking lot?”

MmmmHmmm. NOT happening.

Little Rivet: Certified chick repellent. Also damaging to my fragile male ego (sniffle).

I headed for the house in a good mood…because despite whatever subtext is flying about a good workout and cute young things are a good start to the day.

But I was thanking whatever powers that be that I’m not in the modern dating world.

When the ride is the criteria…well…that’s a cute young thing that’s not going anywhere good. Life is SO much more than that.

I’ll see you on the road.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

Posted in Weight Management | 1 Comment

Chop chop…

Facing another shoulder surgery…six months of PT on the other one have passed by. Six months of deliberate pain and debilitating weakness. It’s not even done…but PT is expensive and the insurance won’t cover it anymore.

I’ve got six MORE months of work on my own to achieve…maybe 80%…and a year after that for 95%. My goal is far in excess than that. Not only will I get back to where I was…I will surpass it. Mostly it’s just building muscle now…and I know how to do that. And I know who to hire when I need help on that front. I might even be able to afford that.

But the shoulder’s functional. So…time to do the other one. THAT one is a whole different kind of pain.

And that has to stop. Sanity depends on that.

Chop chop. The scars keep accumulating…and I have a rather unhealthily large number of pictures of the inside of my body. Hopefully the next batch will be the last.

My wife just grimaces and eyes me knowingly when I voice that thought.

Time to get this over with. Get it done. But that means six more months of the careful, deliberate, application of pain. Right to the edge. And the rest of the year lost. And most of the next one too I expect.

So…it’s scheduled. Simultaneously a relief…and an intense anxiety. Into the unknown. The expectation is that it will be *better* than it is now. Perhaps even, as in the other one…an expectation of 95%…with skill of the surgeon…and on my part, enough dedicated work and deliberate infliction of pain.

There are no guarantees though. There aren’t even any promises. Hopes lubricated by skill and hard work. And pain of course.

The accumulated injuries to both were severe.

If only the jobs…and the work…back in those days…paid what they were worth in the pain and injury that I have to fix now.

MRI yesterday. Various appointments made and met. Surgery soon. Fun times.

My surgeon is competent, enthusiastic, and passionate, eager even…and explains what he’s going to do, and what to google if I want to see the rest. He reminds me of…well…ME…when faced with a difficult problem that will tax my skills to the edge.

I like him. He, like me, is the guy you call when you’re serious about getting the job done.

But do they know what they hold in their hands? Do they know the price I’ve paid? Do they realize what’s at stake?

I hope so. I’ve no rational way to communicate it otherwise.

I’ll see you on the road.

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

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Fitness Wolves…

The hardest part about my fitness quest is by far…the head game…motivation is key…and most people suck at self motivation…usually preferring some external influence to “require” them to achieve something…

Along those lines…

Fitness Wolves…that would do it!

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

Posted in Weight Management | Leave a comment

Suck it T2!

I’m not quite where I want to be on weight/body fat percentage, but I’m closing in on my goals despite the occasional “clompings” life keeps tossing my way.

Y’all note: If I can do this…any of you can!

Own it! Get on it!

I’ll see you on the road!

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer
You can read more about my fitness journey here.

Posted in Weight Management | Leave a comment

Wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong…

What if everything they ever taught you was wrong?

What to eat. When to eat. How much to eat. Dietary cholesterol impacting blood cholesterol and/or heart disease. Dietary fat. Carbs. A calorie is just a calorie. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

What if they know this, and continue to teach it anyway?

What if the teaching of all this “wrong” is so pervasive that despite evidence to the contrary, we still follow it?

What if it’s so pervasive that despite evidence to the contrary your DOCTOR still follows it, and won’t support you attempting to change?

What if the standards AND the methods to achieve them recommended by your doctor (or your education) are SO wrong that they are unhealthy?

Once I tossed out all I “KNEW”…I achieved these results.

What if the food pyramid…that handy thing that tells you what to eat…is essentially (but not quite) upside-down?

What if all calories aren’t created equal?

What if the type of calories consumed matter far MORE than how many you eat?

What if pricing and availability of food sources was nearly inversely related to what you *should* be eating to optimize your health?

If all that was the case…what would happen?

You might see statistics like:

–40% of adults are obese (and rising).
–70% of adults are overweight (and rising).
–30% of children are overweight or obese (and rising).
–100 million Americans…nearly 1/3 of the population…has diabetes or pre-diabetes (and rising).

Unfortunately all those statistics are real.

It’s easy to get caught up in the question of “why”…but the answer is usually simple. There’s money involved somewhere. Doesn’t matter though. We’ve been programmed to fail…but once we turn into adults, we can make our own decisions. That we’re failing is blatantly obvious. The information on how NOT to fail is out there, and the results speak for themselves.

Face the facts. Don’t deceive yourself. Find the way. Own it. Take control.

Food for thought.

And this tidbit as well:

What else have you been taught…what else do you KNOW…that is completely wrong?

I’ll see you on the road.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer
You can read more about my fitness journey here.

Posted in Weight Management | 3 Comments

Jurassic World, Fallen Kingdom…a review…

But of course we did!

That cute little geek girl of mine and I headed to the movies last night…one of our guilty pleasures…”Stupid Action Movie Night”

Jurassic World was on the agenda.

A bit of a review…caution…some spoilers…
We LIKE the “stupid/improbable/over the top” action movie genre. We don’t get too hung up on the physics or science, though we appreciate when reality is at least given a passing nod…but we go to be entertained…and Jurassic World does that at least. Great action, great dinosaurs, cool sets.

So, those are the positives…we enjoyed it. It gave us much of what we needed for an entertaining evening. And…yanno….it was five dollar Tuesday!

We also enjoyed it in that…after what…5 movies?…we are finally where we actually should have been in the first movie (if you read the VERY good Michael Crichton book that spawned all this…) in that…the lesson of that book…was that it was already too late…not only does “life find a way” as Jeff Goldblum’s character states in the movie…but in the book…it was ALREADY too late…the dinosaurs were already off the island.

Now…some critique…

—COMPLETELY predictable…every act…every tense moment…every character…every “what’s next” was transparently predictable. This is NOT necessarily bad…sometimes entertainment is exactly that…you WANT the bad guy to “get his”. The only weakness in this case is they tried too hard to create suspense in many cases when all of us…every person in the theater, knew what was coming next.

We know what’s next…and the characters should too in most of these cases…so it would have played better as non-stop action, rather than trying to add the suspense.

Oh, also, 20 foot long Uber-raptors or whatever they called it…CANNOT hide behind a 4 foot wide display platform. Sigh.

—The motivation to get the two principle characters back to the island is simply not enough, given their experience in the prior movie. The answer would be “No fucking way.” The movie did nothing to convince them (or us) of a plausible/sufficient motivation to go. To top it off…leading into the “completely predictable” mode…the reason they WERE given…that they “bought into”…was an obvious bald-assed lie. Ah well. We HAD to get them to the island for the action, so…willing suspension of disbelief is helpful there.

Very like in the 1997 Lost World movie…if you’ll recall, Jeff Goldblum’s character was asked to go back, he said, “Fuck no!” basically…they said, “But your girlfriend’s there and we lost contact with her!” and he then said, “Okay.” and went in equipped with…a photographer and one trank gun with three darts. Nope. Ain’t buying it.

—Jeff Goldblum’s character…Malcolm…appears for a total of like…3 minutes…seated in a chair speaking to congress in a couple scenes…he was superfluous. Everything he added to the story was already taken care of in the dialog of the two principle characters….it seemed like he heard they were making a movie and called ’em up and said, “Ya gotta put me in! Just a couple minutes! I’m available! And I’m relevant! Really!” (if you didn’t read that in his voice…well go back and read it again!)

—They played Blue (the velociraptor) as “sympathetic”…we’re supposed to feel something for her at the end…NOPE. You just unleashed a raptor in a populated land where her natural prey will be humans…probably smaller ones…so…no. Shoot to kill.

—The game hunter’s death…stupid. He would not have lived as long as he had if he was that stupid…so…the moment that led to his demise was completely out of character for what we know of him…he should have had a more…competent…demise. 🙂

Anyway, if you like the franchise, GO…it’s worth it on the big screen. Enjoy it…and when ya get home…change out those “lever” door-knobs and window latches….oh…and maybe put up a sign at your workplace. I hear they help…

I’ll see you on the road…or perhaps at the movies!

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

Posted in Media | Leave a comment

The Dragon…on The Dragon…on the Tail of the Dragon.

Had a good run last week! Around 4000 miles. Nobody died and I only broke a few things.

Posted in Blog, Road Stories | Leave a comment