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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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

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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.

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Getting there….

I haven’t been this fit since high school.

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

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Small things.

Small things.

Life is full of small things. Oh, big things too…but it’s often the small things…those things anybody should be able to handle…that overwhelm us.

See, they don’t act alone.

Picture a 3-pound dumbbell. Cute little thing. Pretty much anybody should be able to pick one up. It’s a small thing. Most can handle two. Or three. Or more. They are, after all, just small things.

But if I keep handing them to you…these small things…eventually you will reach a point where you can’t manage them all. You may not be able to take another. Or you might take one, and drop a different one. Or, as happens on occasion, you take the additional small thing, and suddenly drop them all.

Straw. Meet camel’s back.

***

Had PT this morning. For those not familiar, this is to help me recover from shoulder surgery. The surgery was to help me recover from a lifetime of hard work. The PT consists of me paying large sums of money so a very sweet, very small lady, will quite cheerfully torture me to death.

Or something like that.

It’s going, but it’s going slow.

Anyway, typically I don’t eat before-hand. Exercise and pain on a full stomach tend to make me queasy. Being tortured to death is ever so much more unpleasant if you are actually hoping to die during the process.

Then work…yanno…the career…the thing that pays for all these shenanigans. Due to the timing, I occasionally hit the local diner for breakfast after PT and before work.

All this to say, small things can matter more than you can possibly understand. Inconsequential courtesies, preformed basically as a habit, without thought or expectation of acknowledgment or award, may mean nothing…or possibly everything.

***

Pulling the big Valk hard right off the street and into the near vacant parking lot of the shopping center, something struck me as amiss. It took me a moment…when riding, that’s the focus and anything not directly related to that challenge is filed to a back burner for processing as I can get to it.

I’d made the turn hard and quick without slowing much because despite my turn signal, the cage behind me didn’t appear to be aware that he was about to run over that 1000 pounds of man and machine directly in front of him. I didn’t risk it, and turned at nearly full speed and bled off the excess in the parking lot. I killed the blinker and headed down the aisle toward my favorite diner.

“BING!” my brain chimed in. “Data in the shunt requires additional processing.”

This is my brain’s kind way of saying, “Pay attention you twit, something’s out of place!”

At low speed in a nearly empty parking lot, with nobody nearby trying to run my ass over, it’s pretty easy to ponder the rest of the world.

Yep, out of place. A lone car, parked in front of a couple of the “not yet open” businesses in the little strip center. A woman standing beside it looking at her phone.

Not too weird. But…

Middle aged (my age, just when the hell did that happen?). Well dressed. Short skirt, long legs, nice top. Not the “trying too hard” look, just pleasantly female. The type of look that seldom happens by accident. She had crafted it. She was good at it.

Again, not too weird.

But she was crying. I could see the tears. Body language suggested just a hint of frustration…and defeat.

I blinked, and swung the Valk around, pulling into the space beside her, but on the opposite side of the car. It doesn’t do to startle folks that might not be interested in my presence. Large bikers, dressed in black, can have that impact whether we wish it or no.

“You okay?” I asked her surprised face. She was already reaching for the door handle to get back in the car. She paused.

“Yes. I’m just lost, and my phone is out of bars.”

I raised an eyebrow but otherwise didn’t comment. The tears said more was going on here than that.

“Where are you trying to be?”

“I was supposed to meet a friend,” she blushed, “I’m late. And lost. And it was going so well.”

“Where?”

“A place called ‘Judy’s’. Supposed to be at Arapaho and Jupiter.”

I raised the other eyebrow, but carefully didn’t comment, grin, or otherwise express emotion. We were, quite literally, sitting in their parking lot.

I said evenly, “My favorite place, they’re very good. You’re right where you aimed for.”

I turned and pointed at the large and obvious ‘Judy’s’ sign at the other end of the small strip center. Giving her a little wave I backed the Valk up a half length, did a smart u-turn, and headed for a parking space closer to the coffee.

“Oh! Thanks!” she said as I rolled by. Her relief was tangible.

A couple minutes after I was seated and sipping my first cup of coffee, she entered, much more composed, and paused at my table.

“You must be married…or have a lot of sisters.”

I chuckled. “Married. Nearly 30 years. Sisters too. Why?”

“I was being silly and you didn’t laugh at me.”

At this I grinned. “Nothing to laugh at. You obviously had something else on your mind.”

“Well, thank you. You’re very nice.” She then joined a gentleman a couple booths down that had been waiting for her. He stood and smiled in polite deference as she took her seat. My brain read it as “a date” in a newish relationship they both thought was going well.

They settled in to an animated discussion over what was no doubt a nice breakfast.

After enjoying an excellent omelette and about 5 cups of coffee I felt prepared to head for work. I’m much less likely to eviscerate somebody with a grapefruit spoon after I’ve had that 4th cup. The last cup was “just in case”.

I’ll have a couple more after I get to work. It’s for the best. Civilization lasts longer this way.

As I went to pay my bill the cashier told me it had been taken care of by the lady “over there”. Her gentleman’s back was to me at this point so I gave her a smile, mouthed ‘thank you’, and then a thumbs up. I never argue when somebody wants to buy me breakfast, even if I think it’s not needed. She carefully nodded in return.

Something happened here. I’ve no idea what, and though I can imagine or guess, I’ll never know for sure. Doesn’t matter.

A small courtesy. Pointing out the “should be obvious” to somebody that was clearly already stressed, with respect and without irritation or derision. It takes no effort, and costs nothing.

It meant nothing. Or perhaps it meant everything. Or maybe it was something in between.

You never know.

Small courtesies. They probably mean nothing. They probably don’t matter.

Behave like they do.

I’ll see you on the road.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

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Reflection…

Met this dude in an elevator the other day. I didn’t recognize him.

Very strange…this fitness journey. I’ve lost damn near 200 pounds. I’m still a bit away from my goal…with is a “fit” 15% body fat…something like 20-25 pounds to go I think.

…and I STILL see the fat guy in the mirror. One day I’ll figure out how to come to terms with that.

That said, the “almost fit” guy in the photographs is a bit freaked out that he can buy an armored motorcycle jacket off the rack in a “normal” size…and it fits.

One day those two dudes are gonna have to meet…

Some guy I met in the elevator.

CUAgain,
Daniel Meyer

You can read more about my fitness journey here.

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