Archive for the ‘Ramblings’ Category

My Absence and My Daughter

Posted: February 10, 2011 in Life, Ramblings

I sincerely apologize to you my faithful and incredibly supportive readers.  You see,  Winter Semester is in full swing and I have been buried under projects with tight deadlines so I have not had the extra time to update this site.  I will leave you with this one thing though.

Have you ever been blown away by one of your kids?  I mean, they do something (good) and it leaves you absolutely speechless and you are left wondering “where the heck did that come from?”  You would like to think that its your stellar parenting skills but you secretly hope that perhaps they are just that rad, their heart is really that big.  What am I rambling about?  Check this out and then ask yourself as I have…”Just where in the world does an 11-year-old get this kind of moxy and courage?”

This is my daughters site read it and check out what she is doing:  Ripples

Are we friends?  I mean are we friends in the modern odd way that people are friends now?  I am of course speaking of the parallel universe that exists just outside the parameters of our very own physical existence….Facebook.  If we aren’t we should be and you should also do a wee search on the ol’ Facebook machine for a little page called 100poundsago and you should most definitely click “Like” on that rascal.  I threw out a dare right before New Years saying it “Would be rad if 100poundsago could get 100 fans by 2011.”  Some folks were added but not even close to 100 so get on it people!

 I have a few e-mails in my inbox asking “How was the Polar Rhino Ride?”  My immediate rebuttal has been “I guess it was fine, didn’t make it this year.  I started out the New Year puking my shoes off.”  This of course is not even in close proximity to how I actually wanted to spend News Years Day or several days following.  I wanted to go on that dang ride dangit!  I wanted to go bad too.  For crying out loud it was 45 degrees that day, which alone is a welcome respite from the winter doldrums.  Nay!  In bed I laid shivering and miserable secretly cursing everyone on the ride because I was bitter that I could not be.  So if you got a flat or some other form of cycling atrocity on the ride I apologize it was my fault.  If you have been a reader for a while you will remember on the 2010 ride I beat myself up pretty bad I opined about stagnation in weight loss among many other complaints about myself.  I was going to use the ride this year as a time to reflect over the 2010 cycling year, oh well I’m flexible reflection can be done anywhere I suppose.

 I have also more than a few E-mails asking what my “Resolutions” are or where?  Honestly I don’t make them, haven’t in years.  I use to make them, for example, “I am going to stop smoking in 1994…the same one was made in 95, and 96, 97 98, 99, 2000, 01, 02…you get the point right?  Each year it was an abysmal failure, each resolution lasted until about noon on January 1 when I would run out and buy a carton of cigarettes and chain smoke the New Years in.   It’s a societal joke really, they are expected to fail there is really no pressure to actually succeed at them.  They are in reality forgotten about and breezed by no guilt attached.  I make goals for myself and have done so for the past few years I break them down to small manageable and realistic benchmarks.  Will I be challenged to reach them, yes most definitely but therein lays the fun.   Let me give you an example:  I got it into my head not too long ago that I wanted to run a 5k.  Now if you know me you know I despise running with every thread of my being.  So what did I have to do?  I had to build up to it, I know I would have failed if I laced up some running shoes and tried to run a 5k.  I did the “Couch to 5k” program.  Each day building on the last until bingo bongo you just busted out 5k’s worth of pavement pounding which I did and I am pretty sure it was the furthest I have ever run in my life.  5k….check!  Now on to the next one.  Not resolutions….goals. 

 What are your goals today, or this week, or this month?  Leave some comments, lets discuss.

Honestly the whole idea of a Santa Clause frightens me, I mean take a few minutes and think about it.  A guy who lives in the barren tundra of the North Pole, really out of shape, works one day a year and the rest of the time hangs out with elves?  That’s creepy right?  Then add the fact he can get into everyone’s house, keeps tabs on everyone formulating a list of who is naughty and nice all from atop the world.  It’s a bit…oh….I don’t know….1984 for me.  There are too many overtones of “Thought Police” for my taste.  Children writing letters to him asking for toys, begging to be placed on the nice list despite the fact they may or may not have pulled Suzie’s pigtails at lunch or issued that “noogy” to that pre-school brother of theirs.  Furthermore, while I am ranting and raving with no clear purpose, just what constitutes good and bad, naughty and nice?  Is there a rule book, is there a website, and is there a Facebook page dedicated to naughty and nicety?  If there rules aren’t clearly printed in black and white somewhere and freely available I don’t think we should be held to a constantly sliding scale of what is naughty and nice, tell me you agree?

I say all of that to say this; I must have been really really good this year cause Santa delivered to my house (even though it creeps me out thinking this dude was in my living room) a bounty of cycling goodness.  I hereby declare that despite the fact my Kit is already better than yours (a subject I have touched on here) I am now three times better looking than probably 93.862% of all cyclists because I found two new cycling jerseys under the tree this year.  Thus bringing my total count of jersey awesomeness to 5.  Now I have other jerseys, however 5 of them are of such radness they strike fear and trepidation into the deep recesses of a person’s soul when they are looked upon.    Of course it being winter in Michigan you will not be able to see these two new additions for another 8 months…which brings me to my second point of why I must have been so dang good this year.  Under the tree I also found the Sugoi Neo jacket I have been drooling after since last winter.  So while the awesomeness of my daily jersey selection shall remain hidden in the winter months have no fear the top layer of my kit is a completely rad-tastic jacket.   

Hope everyone had a good Christmas!

 Did you happen to see the art I am selling to raise money for the Tour de Cure this year?  There are 3 left of the first offering and I have started work on the second run of cycling art.  Here is a hint of what it will look like. 

Just a little hint

8x10 glossy's are $19.99 without an autograph....with an autograph the price jumps to $99.00 (thanks Erwin for takin the pic)

Today I am going to wander just ever so slightly off of the usual topics found here at 100poundsago…well not really that far….ok fine I am going to write about something totally in line with what you usually find here but in a different kind of way. 

Let’s talk about responsibility shall we?  We all know the word; it was probably introduced to you by your parents in the form of taking out the garbage or picking up dog poop in the yard.  You have to have it in your life right?  I mean responsibility essentially forces us to go to work, pick up the kids from school and pay the bills.  Its an inescapable fact of life for even the most foot loose and fancy free type of characters in the world have some form of responsibility, as much as it pains we “grindstone” folks, in the end its there.  Where am I going with this you ask?  Actually I don’t know I am hoping it will come to me sometime before I finish typing this sentence.  Yup!  There it is!  A little while ago I alluded ever so cleverly about something big that was going on around 100poundsago HQ.  Well here it is kids.  I have agreed to serve as the 2011 American Diabetes Michigan Tour de Cure Adult Advocate.   This was not without reservation and some serious soul type searching.  Right there the whole time the “R” word was whispering in my ear.  It whispered things like “You can make a difference to someone” and “you could be the spark one person needs to reverse the effects” So I acquiesce and agree with only two conditions….everyone has to salute me and refer to me by my official self appointed and self invented title of “The Most High Exalted Majestic Ambassadorship Gene” I didn’t think that was too much to ask do you?  As much as I hate being serious I feel I need to be serious about this all kidding aside.  Diabetes sucks I was able through some really hard work to stymie the effects of Type II in my own body and I am willing to do or say whatever I can to help others do the same.   

 Want to help me?  Find the 2011 Tour de Cure in your area, join a team, get on your bike…and ride.

I get asked on occasion “Just how is it you come up with the stuff to put on the 100poundsago site?”  My answer….”life” Which I think is one of the founding principals of what a “blog” truly is or should be right?  It’s that simple. If something happens while I am cycling or I come across something unusual I will write it down here.  There is no  real secret formula really.   A lot of the deeper personal stuff comes from my journal…yes I keep a journal.  Here is a brief peek into the birth of the post A YEAR

It started as a journal entry.  Then I mulled it over for a while trying to decide whether or not I was comfortable allowing the world a small glimpse into my mind.  Being about 51% sure I was comfortable with it I type it out and publish it.  Then I spend the next few days regretting such a thing but leave it up anyway hoping and praying that no one I know will mention that they read it.    That is where the body of that particular post came from.  The saying at the bottom was actually a different journal entry from a different day.  I combine the two and the result was A YEAR

Dear Santa,

Posted: October 24, 2010 in Gear, Jackassery, Life, Minor Psychosis, Ramblings, Ridin

Dear Santa,

I know it’s a little early to write to you and give you my Christmas list this year but I figure you would be cool with it because Target already has Christmas decorations out in their store. I don’t always subscribe to the Target stores method of seasonal changes but I have quite list this year and some really expensive stuff so I thought I would give you as much advance notice as possible so you can reward my awesome “good behavior” over the last year. I know you are going to check that list twice and each time you will see my name on the very tippy top of the “good” and nary a mark will be found on the “bad” side….ok ok fine I know there was a time or two I misbehaved…your not going to begrudge me that are you? Ok here is my list and this year just like last year you can expect some gluten free, egg free vegan cookies and some almond milk at the bottom of my chimney. I am also going to leave you the E-2 book and an American Diabetes Association cookbook, to be frank and honest with you I have some deep concerns about your health.

You will notice that everything on this list is cycling related which should not come as a surprise to anyone really.

1.  I ride to work everyday now and when I leave in the morning it is quite dark still.  I could use some new lights for my bike just like the Mininewt.700

2.  Speaking of darkness I could really use a new monster bright jacket.  Mine has seen better days and is in need of retirement.  I would like the Sugoi Helium jacket….yellow please! 

3.  While your elves are stitching the Sugoi Helium jacket together why not have them also thow the Sugoi Neo in your sleigh as well?  It looks nice and warm and since Michigan winters rival North Pole winters I am sure you can appreciate a nice warm jacket? 

4.  I could really use some nice socks for those long winter commutes by bike.  My old smartwool socks are done…finished….kaput.  I like the socks this dude has.  The crazier the style the better I say…why be normal? 

5.  I was starting to think that all jersey makers pretty much sucked until I got my ADA Tour de Cure jersey….love that thing.  So I will pretty much take anything thing from here.

6.  I am pretty sure the Giro Prolight would look really good on me while protecting my melon.

7.  You can pick which one of these you want to give me:  this one -or- this one

8.  The Chris King “Dreadset”…..this requires no explanation.

Thanks a bunch,

Gene

I was reading some things Jody was saying this morning at it set me off on a thinking tangent.  You can recognize one of my thinking tangents by the following symptoms:  deep blank stares, babbling, drooling, and possibly smoke emanating from my ears and or nose.  I tell you that so you will know I gave this somber thought. 

 Anyway…..What if we just pretend for a minute….just one minute…What if ALL doctors across the country treated and talked to their patients like mine did?  What if instead of sugar coating everything and throwing pills at symptoms they actually investigated and found the root problem of the ailment?  I had a laundry list of physical problems Diabetes, Hypertension, sky high Cholesterol, Cardiac Arrhythmias….sadly I was perfectly at ease living with these problems, actually I was perfectly at ease DYING from these because it never really dawned on me that I was in fact dying.  I had been placated by doctors for years as they threw more and more pills at me. They pacified me by pretending to be looking for a cure to my problems all the while because of a sense of not wanting to offend they let me live the life I was accustomed to.   No one ever said to me “You know Fattikins if you lost a bunch of weight most, if not all, of your problems will go away!”  There is a complacent attitude in not only the general populous but seems to be running rampant in the medical community as well.  A mind-set of absolute and total denial about just how much weight can impact and influence your overall well being.  Take me for example, I lost weight and I no longer have Diabetes, Hypertension, sky high Cholesterol, Cardiac Arrhythmias.  It was that simple lose weight, lose the problems.   

 I know exactly where I would be if he would have calmly and dismissively said to me “Cuts some pounds, try to quit smoking and eat more white meat blah blah blah” I would still be over 300 pounds, still ramming Big Macs down my gullet, chain smoking and slowly waddling my way to an oversized casket at a very young age.   It took a bit of foul language, some evil eyes, and a grotesquely painted picture of how the rest of my pathetic fat life was going to play out, or what was left of it.  Now from a monetary standpoint this doctor had an honest to cash cow (both literally and figuratively) with me as a patient.  I was looking at a lot of office visits, lots of tests, lots of misc expenditures all that where sure to pad his pockets.  Instead he set me off on the right path from the word jump.  So why is that so hard?  Why is he the only doctor I saw in nearly 2 decades of visiting physicians that took the time to bust my chops?  Denial, complacency, afraid to hurt feelings and offend?  I wish I knew but I am eternally thankful that he took the time to cuss me out.

Nearly every day I say the following quote “If I can do it anyone can” and I am being dead serious about it.  If a slovenly, morbidly obese, chain smoking, un-motivated person such as me can decide to put down the cigarettes, jump on a bike and take the reins of my own health over anyone can.