July 4th and the Family Visits

I have two older brothers. I am the only girl and last child. I’m not a brat, but I’ve done what I wanted for as long as I can recall. Doesn’t mean I wasn’t punished when I was bad.

Both brothers live in southern states, so when they visit it’s a long trip to get up here. They pull in 12-15 hours of driving.

Holidays like July 4th, December 25th and New Year’s Eve are days I dislike the most. Why? Expectations don’t mesh with reality.

I believe the media has us trained with an expectation to experience certain emotions during these days, and if it doesn’t happen – then one is not normal. Or you are missing out on the greatest feelings and events that should be happening in your life. Oh happy happy joy joy!

Hey, that probably explains the high rates of suicides during the Holidays. There is a social pressure of making folks feel left out of the “fun” and it is cruel. Not everyone has a large family, a lot of friends or even any friends.

And before the over-commercialized unnatural consumeristic lifestyles got ahold of people, these events were enjoyed without such religiosity. (Sorry, it was the only word that came to mind.)

If you are a misanthropic curmudgeon such as myself Holidays aren’t a joy to behold. Family reunions don’t excite. And being without company is a joy to behold.

Don’t get me wrong, I adore my family. I just like seeing them outside of the socially dictated calendar events. I see ’em when I see ’em, I don’t need artificial exuberance to enjoy their company.

Enjoy America’s birthday.


Another Milestone

There are two small differences between the two photos:

I look taller in the bottom (most recent) and my hair is probably an inch longer.

How to tell? Well, it was a struggle to take the first photo. My head is tilting backwards and reaching that twist was a real strain. I made several attempts to hold onto it.

The latest photo (bottom) was an easy reach and my head is level. My Mom was seated when she took it, that’s why I look taller.

I can’t braid hair to save my life, so my Mom did it for me. She does a terrific job and I plan on keeping them in for a few weeks (if possible).

The real important difference – to me – is the weight loss since April. It’s roughly 10 lbs. and I think the difference is noticable. Plus my waist size went from 36 inches to 32 inches.

I know I said I wouldn’t mention it until July 2007, but I found the most recent picture to be a nice sign of progress.


Raw Food "Diets"

I remember Susan Powter from the 1990’s. She’s the Australian who – to me – was the first to talk about eating non-processed foods. It made sense, limit the amount of processed foods; eat as much raw (uncooked) foods as possible.

She fell off the map after filing for bankruptcy, but her ideas (although I doubt she was the originator of this trend) live on.

I was browsing around YouTube, when I saw something about Raw Foods. Turns out that being a Vegan is not enough, one has to be a totally Raw Vegan to top that.

Damn, we can’t just figure out how to eat in moderation, eating has to become this complex, overly researched, overly sensitive, politically correct method to show folks how pure one is as a person. A nutso foodie to be exact.

I’m all for eating raw foods. I wasn’t aware there was a new name for simply eating fruits and vegetables. Get that? Eating fruits and vegetables now has a trendy new name: raw vegan. Help yourself to that new ideology.

It sounds cultish to me, but that’s my twist and bend on this topic.

There were a number of male (and female) YouTube videos, which started at the new year proposing a new resolution: to eat like a deer. Oh sorry, I mean rabbit. No, monkey is more appropriate. Scratch thatmonkeys eat meat.

Anywho, initially lots of people showed terrific success eating raw fruits, nuts, vegetables and other non-meats. However, based on timelines some slipped and fell off the foodie wagon.

If I could, I’d tell them straight: there’s nothing wrong with broiled or baked steak, chicken, or fish. Nothing wrong with a wicked, sugary, salty snack. The key to weight loss is moderate eating.

Unfortunately, because the raw method is so … raw people clearly weren’t having fun with their food. Everything they ate was devoid of pleasure; that’s why people fall off the wagon and return to binging.

If someone is going to go raw or vegan or whatever, the meals they eat must be pleasurable. Food is like sex, not only do you need it, you should also enjoy it.


Weight Lifting: All and Everything

I used to love watching the World’s Strongest Man competition. I haven’t googled it yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised by a World’s Strongest Woman competition.

Shouldn’t every woman in the world qualify?

I have always loved weight lifting. I got hooked on it in High School, but I wont say that was something I did through thick and thin. When the opportunity was there, I would join a health club, or use a school’s facilities to lift weights. I can’t stand health clubs, but that’s another topic.

I don’t know how strong I am, or how strong I was.

I remember when I moved into my first apartment. My Dad looked at the re-arranged furniture and asked me who helped.

I said, “No one.” He was aghast. He said that if I have to move heavy stuff around ask him to help out.

I heard him, but I wasn’t bothered, because I didn’t have any problems moving around heavy objects. I still don’t. I can haul a sofa around with one arm. I never get a sore back or injuries from it. I’ve found it to be a challenge that I can manage.

A few years back a guy I was seeing was getting on my nerves. He was 5’8″ and weighed between 150-175 lbs. In a humorous mood I picked him up a few times. I suggested he gain some weight.

Currently, I have the weight bench on the top, but I drool over having the one on the bottom someday. I want the full workout weight bench.


Restaurants: Why I Hate Them

With a sense of amazement, I once listened to a radio talk show host convey how much he hated restaurants. I share his hatred of them. I was surprised that there’s even a media personality who dislikes them: restaurants are status symbols for these people.

And yet, like most of us who must eat out on occasion, the media personality still frequents restaurants.

Here’s my quick complaint list:

  • the noise,
  • the staring,
  • the wait (to sit, or for food),
  • you never get what you expect from your order,
  • the bitchy waitress,
  • the over friendly / phoney waitress,
  • the waiter / waitress that won’t go away and shut up,
  • the disappearing waiter / waitress that won’t come back,
  • having to beg for a glass of water,
  • having to ask for more napkins / tissues,
  • the lipstick on the drink glass,
  • the dirty forks,
  • the roach in the soup,
  • wondering how many employees sneezed in the food that day,
  • wondering how much of the food is recycled,
  • being unable to identify the “meat” in the “food”,
  • the rancid smell hot seasoning can’t cover up,
  • hoping that you won’t get food poisoning,
  • the more expensive the food, the worse the “service”,
  • and last but not least people (at another table) wanting to talk to you about your food just as you are ready to commence eating.

Of course, there are more, but those were the first items off the top of my head.