Archive for July, 2016
Ms. Lee was happy today, her soft curly hair was pulled back into her usual bun. As she sat there in her favorite rocking chair out in front of the Cracker Barrel the sunlight danced across her smiling face. I couldn’t help noticing that she had that childlike sparkle the one that lets me know she is thinking of her daddy. Ms. Lee is an eighty-two year old black woman who grew up in Mississippi. She has Alzheimer’s.
As she sat there rocking back, and forth in her rocking chair I knew she was no longer eighty-two years old. She was eight years old, and her daddy was coming home for a short stay. You see “daddy was a Pullman porter for a railroad whose home base was in Nebraska. He was often away from home working, but in 1942 this was considered to be a high-ranking job within the black community. Ms. Lee’s entire demeanor changed as she sat there looking out across the Cracker Barrel parking lot.
I knew in her mind she sitting on the front porch of her childhood home anxiously awaiting daddy’s arrival. She told me that she had to keep her eye out for him so she could let momma know. Momma was inside the house cooking daddy’s favorite meal. She told me she wished daddy didn’t have to always be away from home so much. I told her that it must be very hard to have him away so much. She gave me her big girl nod, and smile. She said “It’s okay daddy does this so that he can take care of us. He loves us, and he wants us to have a better life.”
She was beaming with pride, and she continued her fast paced rocking I noticed her eyes searching the view before us, the face of every person who walked by us.Then her fast paced rocking slowed a bit, and she looked up at me with the kind of expression a child gives when they have a secret they want to tell you. I smiled back, and told her “A penny for your thoughts.” She giggled, and said “Daddy always brings me a surprise!”
I asked her what kind of surprise?”Her entire face was lit up with excitement, and she said “Daddy brings us candy, he brings us Bit O’ Honeys!” I repeated “Bit O” Honeys” with great envy which made her giggle even louder. Then she said “Do you know why Daddy brings me those?” I said “No why?”
She stops her rocking, and a shyness crosses her face before returning to its blinding beam. Then she says “Because daddy calls me his bit of honey!” Then with her giant childlike face she begins to rock again. I am always so moved by this particular memory. I love knowing that in an instant her failing mind has the ability to transport her back to such a warm memory. Ms Lee is eighty-two years old, and she is still a “Daddy’s Girl” 😉
So apparently, my 8 weeks is up.
My diet buddy immediately wanted to schedule a celebratory outing at our favorite burger joint. I think diet buddy is trying to make this translate into places of temptation. I’ve already been doing this, but apparently they feared trying it. I wanted to ease back into the real world without going nuts in it.
Personally, I would have preferred a giant boat of fucking sashimi. I haven’t had sushi at all in this time and I miss it. Sashimi is a perfectly acceptable alternative. Sure a flash fried roll of some sort would be awesome, but I’m not there yet.
I mentioned that my eight weeks ended to Spawn when I got home and they just said “huh, well kind of too late to change now after all this effort.”
What a great answer.
I do plan on hitting a wing and ale place at some point, I don’t like potatoes but I like raw fries (floppy, thank you, with loads of malt vinegar) – don’t ask, and although I inhale my food when I eat, I’m eating less overall.
In all, it wasn’t as stellar as I thought it was going to be. There was no nipple scars from chest tape going across the finish line, no cheering, no passing out in the pavement and thanking everything to have to made it. I think my main thought was “huh, that got here faster than I thought it would.”
I’m still not where I want to be weight-wise, of course, this was a tiny amount of time. Yes, my pants are looser, my shirts fit better, the water weight in my legs is finally starting to fuck off and is mostly gone, I’m sleeping better, I’m moving better and with less (not none yet) pain. But I’ve a 6 year jagged track to reverse and I intend to do that in a lot less time.
So although yes, I won’t adamantly abstain from everything now, but this is where the cycling has to begin, My body freaks out when I don’t go by a routine. I was off to a good start because I was doing extreme things it couldn’t predict and plan for. I will have use that information in order to make sure my body stays in a constant state of WTF?! until I’m back to a state I want to be in: High one day, extreme low the next 3, week of normal, two weeks of low cal/carb, etc.
It’s all ok…. because I still have cheese ;p
Schnookums got back in town from their dad’s. Apparently, only for the weekend though and then its off to grandma’s. I used to feel bad that Spawn didn’t have all this extended family to visit and become close to, but then I hear of shit like this and realize I’m glad I don’t have to share because fuck that noise. Had one or both of Spawn’s grandmothers been alive, I would probably barely see the child.
Once again, mom and her brood of three flew in, chatted for a little while and deposited Schnookums into our care. I asked up front if it was ok if they ran a few errands with us. I was told that was fine, but to please limit them to only one soft drink as they felt the caffeine might worsen the seizures. I was conned into two the last time, so when we both looked over at Schnookums they just silently nodded in agreement like a villain who got off scot free.
It started off as a silent breakfast, apparently the hyper-interactive side had not been able to present itself in Schnookums for a while, so they were adjusting to be around us again. My mind and ears started wandering over to the geritol table beside us where they were discussing some trip with a friend by the name of Richard apparently.
Then I leaned over to Spawn where Schnookums could hear and whispered, “they’re talking about Dick.”
Both kids erupt into snorts.
Then we all kind of tuned into the geritol squad where they went on about having several good pictures of “Dick” and how they had copies made of those and passed them around.
Needless to say, we were in tears for a good twenty minutes or so.
Schnookums:”This is the best breakfast ever.”
And the floodgates of chatter opened once more.
Spawn and I played rock, paper, scissors to see if we would be going to the music store (I had needs) or the art store first (Spawn has been commissioned to paint a picture for a co-worker with a new house). I won and Schnookums got a lesson in local music stores and how awesome they could be. They picked a couple of cd’s themselves even, one of which was My Chemical Romance. I’m not a fan, mostly because I’ve only heard blurbs of a couple songs and it really didn’t pique my interest too much, but when Schnookums found it and got excited, I leaned over to see what it was and said “you know the lead singer writes comics, right?”
Schnookums:”Whoa, no way! Really?”
Schnookums and Spawn are currently writing a comic. In fact, Spawn is currently storyboarding Schnookums’ story. So this was like finding out your idol is your idol twice-over.
We went all over the store, Spawn almost physically dragging me out when they saw the stack of cd’s I’d accumulated. It has been too long since I’ve been and I have time to make up for. I even placed an order for items they didn’t have, something I tend to do more than I like to admit. Schnookums was having a great time, and I told them they need to show their mom this place when they got a chance.
I decided on a classic as the first song when we got in the car, a truly enriching cd to play. One both educational as well as entertaining, one that epitomized the youth of my era.
The first track? Smack My Bitch Up by the Prodigy, of course.
(BTW, probably NSFW, I’ve not seen the video, so be warned)
The art store always sucks me into an infinite vortex of possibilities. Schnookums asked if they could run to the bathroom. I gave a vague direction of where they were usually located and they were off. Spawn went to scout out canvases. I wandered a little, but found the two checking canvases in the back of the store. I asked Schnookums if they found the bathroom, only to be told they didn’t need to go anymore. I’m worried that a backed up bladder is going to somehow bring on a seizure or something only to be told:
Schnookums:”Actually, I just wanted to look around.”
me:”Why didn’t you just say so?”
Apparently, this is how Schnookums gets away from mom and brood when they want some solo time.
Schnookums found out quick that in our dynamic, I’m the one who usually wanders off to who knows where, at one point Spawn demanding that I stay nearby.
me:”But I found furry skull pillows! I need these!”
Spawn:”No you don’t!”
me:”Then you can pay for your own crap.”
Spawn:”I would but I forgot my wallet”
I was told to turn the Prodigy cd down on the way home and the kids once again played video games when we arrived. Schnookums created a character that was based loosely on our fatass cat named Munchkinsquishytush or similar. They ran it around at first and asked other players “tell me I’m cute.”
Before we were due to meet Schnookums, I had already tried to install a few games on my computer, ones they could play together, mostly online. Of course as soon as I went to run them, most wanted to do a five hour update or some bullshit, so that idea was blown out of the water before it had a chance. Those two never minded though.
Oh yeah, my belated birthday gift to myself was a gaming computer. It’s red and glows. Spawn is jealous. They can suck it.
Somewhere during their reverie, the heat and over exertion of the puny a/c’s in our shitty little house kept tripping the breaker. I don’t know what fucking electrical idiot decided to put over half the house on one circuit, but if I ever meet him, I’ll rip his dick off and make him eat it.
I’m only a little angry, I promise.
So of course, our computers are on that circuit, which means we can’t even get more than one AC to run and stay running, as soon as we flipped the 2nd, the breaker trips again… and again… and again. It’s a very muggy 102 outside at the time. We’re hating life.
Spawn and I did a little testing and find out there are about two or three outlets NOT on the one damn circuit but nowhere near our desk. So, another trip out to Lowe’s where I grossly overestimate the length needed and get the 100 yd one, “just in case.” But, it solved our problem and kept us cool and going.
While we were out, I asked if they were hungry (it’s been hours since breakfast by this time) to which I got a resounding “yes!”. Again, I introduce Schnookums to yet another local favorite, a burger joint that looks like a warehouse from the outside and only has one small sign in the back parking lot, behind a tree. You find it by word of mouth only.
And for the folks who have been following my diet quest, yes this was a high calorie day for me. The next was protein shakes and a bag of salad mix to even it out. By high, meaning I had a bacon spinach omelet and a piece of rye for breakfast, a cheese burger with no bread, with a side salad for dinner. No shakes, unsweetened tea and water. I was kind of pained from the amount actually, but so good.
Schnookums opted for a ghost chili burger. They lived to regret it. They ended up having to eat their burger with a knife and fork like i was doing once we scraped as much as the cheese off as we could.
I was glad this time Spawn was a bit past the brooding silent observation they had the first time I met Schnookums. I wasn’t sure if it was irritation we were getting along or just that initial hesitation that Spawn can get when a new element is in their territory. Spawn adores their BFF a lot for example, but only likes to be around them in limited doses. I can tell when they have had enough of even me as they will don earphones and find a corner to have quiet time.
Schnookums asked me to tell them when we got sick of them, but I never responded. They melded into our world pretty well so I really didn’t have my usual amount of exhausted overstimulation either. Maybe I’m getting a thick skin to it. Like last time, it was their mom who finally decided they were coming to get them.
Schnookums has a chromebook that has been inoperable for a while, so I had a rescue thumbdrive ready this time. I also put a bug in mom’s ear that a gaming machine could be had for less than a laptop from the right spot. Then showed them the right spot. Apparently, mom was just as aggravated with the uncle who didn’t follow through as much as Schnookums was. Schnookums was promised usage of the laptop mom didn’t use, and Schnookums and Spawn arranged to try to play together later.
Spawn and I have been craving pizza like mad. Pizza in and of itself and the toppings I like on them, NONE of them are bad. It’s that mutha effin’ crust that kicks a diabetic’s ass.
I found one recipe on dietdoctor.com for a pizza with a crust made from cheese and egg.
This doesn’t even remotely sound appetizing to me so I held off and kept searching.
Then I found this one:
I’d never heard of the Fathead movie. I did watch the movie Supersize Me that it was made to openly mock though. Of course, what I got from the latter was:
- McDonald’s had unhealthy food (no shit, sherlock)
- His girlfriend is all about vegan
- Diet can make a huge impact
I completely agree with the first and last and don’t give a shit about the middle one. It got a lot of backlash because he didn’t post a log of what he ate, didn’t use some scientific method, was full a shit on the whole panic part where his doc and gf begged him to stop… hell, I don’t know. I got the vibe it was meant to shock and create a frenzy of fear in America’s overall health, but I tend to not really get sucked in easily and I tend to agree that diet makes a huge impact.
I just tend to lean to the side that low carb (what Fathead trumpets) is the better impact, for me. If gluten-free, vegan is your jam, then that makes an impact for you. Johns Hopkins and their high fat diet that treats epilepsy… awesome. Anytime someone takes a leap to change what they already consume to treat the bad things they feel, I tend to think that is a smart move even if its not completely successful. But there is never one answer to everything or everyone.
All I knew is my ass wanted pizza. So we made this and topped it with bacon, chicken sausage, portabello, and although I wanted to put spinach on it, we didn’t have any.
I had to use a little more almond flour than listed to get a doughy enough feel to start spreading it. Spreading also ended up being more of an oiled hand quickly patting it into a pizza like shape as I didn’t have the paper. I didn’t have to poke any more holes in it after 8 minutes and I wasn’t able to hold it to eat it. I will probably play with another egg and a bit more flour or more cheese. I dusted it with sea salt and garlic, fresh oregano, basil and Spawn tossed some rosemary on it for fun.
It fucking rawked, taste-wise. Even with a fork, it felt, smelled and soothed our soul like pizza.
So… me, the Yankee, the Hippy and one of our other employees went to an “advanced” class on Windows Excel. I say “advanced” since I’m not sure if they just have to mention the buzzwords of “pivot table” or “vlookup” to qualify, but that was about the quality of this course. Our suspicion of exactly how bad it was going to be started when we got a good look of the picture of our instructor.
I’m not sure why this is a thing, but they are now doing courses where the instructor is remote and you have to listen to them over a conference speaker. They can see everything you do on your screen and you spend a majority of your time on mute and only interrupt with questions. Call me old fashioned, but this doesn’t appeal to me at all.
Don’t get me wrong, I see the utilitarian aspects of it. I just think it blows.
Considering the instructor’s photo looked like it was pulled right from her Tinder profile, duckface and all, she looked like she blew too.
And swallowed. A lot. And cheaply.
We spent at least another half hour trying to find a linkedin profile for her, which we found, and it too looked like yet another choice Tinder alternate, except this one was about 50 pounds heavier than the one in our faces currently.
How much lack of self-awareness do you need to think slut photos are “professional?” Why wouldn’t a boss doing their due diligence kind of guide you off a whore-ish cliff in the workplace?
Unfortunately, after the usage of “irregardless” (not a word) and “cumbersun” (cumbersome) and every cliche used backwards, I can only guess from a lack of understanding them, there was no value to be had in the instruction either.
There was not one single question posed to her that she could answer. We stepped through formulas that no person on earth would ever find useful. Most of her knowledge seemed to be based in memorization, in spite of bragging to 30+ years (how old was that fucking picture?) of Excel experience .
Though she wanted to spend a great deal of time on how to make spreadsheets “pretty.” Fuck that noise. If I want to see a pretty spreadsheet, I’ll look here:
They requested we fill out an evaluation for the class when we were done for the day.
Bad move… no, I didn’t hold back. I kind of eviscerated her: her grammar, her Tinder pic, her lack of any real usable instruction or knowledge in the material. However, I did try to finalize it on a positive note and complemented the building, the snacks and the book…
In spite of everything, it was a nice day. The Yankee and I only got in one argument over the fact that Dunkin Donuts sucks epic shit and Krispy Kreme rules. Apparently, Northerners are all about DD for the coffee? …even though the doughnuts blow chodes. I would rather get coffee where the main element – the doughnuts – are actually good. I don’t usually go to doughnut shops for the coffee, but hey. We finally agreed to disagree on that point.
We tried a new wing and ale place for lunch and I had an epic spinach salad with honey bacon that kicked some ass, so all in all total win of a day. Oh yeah, and it wasn’t at fucking work!
If you’re not laughing out loud at least once a day then you are truly not living. Yesterday morning “Bette Davis” was completely stoked about her day because her pastor was coming by for a visit. Let me point out to you that we are talking about a woman who is terminally ill, and has been sleeping upright in a chair for an entire year who was absolutely giddy. Two things light her up like nothing else in this world. The first is great humor, and the second is a good looking man, and her young handsome pastor fits into both of those categories.
“Bette Davis” and I watch a lot of comedies together, and one of our absolute favorites are the old reruns of the television show “Reba.” If you have never seen this show I need to apologize to you because you will not get the humor of this post, but for those of you who have you will completely understand the hilarity of this moment. There is a character called Barbra Jean. She is a tall beautiful funny character who is prone to getting innocent crushes on men who are not her husband. Barbra Jean has a huge crush on her pastor, so much so that she once gave him a copy of “The Thorn Birds.” She also refers to him as “Reverend Yummy Pants.”
“Bette Davis” who normally could care less about her appearance wanted me to doll her up before the young goodlooking pastor arrived. He was coming a little sooner than usual, and rushing someone who struggles to breathe is tricky. We managed to get her on her “A” game best, but moving too quickly slows down the amount of oxygen that flows to her brain, and sometimes renders the usually very articulate “Bette Davis” in a state of slight forgetfulness.
Finally we hear the doorbell ring, and this dolled up 80 year-old is so giddy she’s literally beaming. This is something she knows I will make fun of later after he leaves, but she will masterfully hide this from him when he enters the room. He only sees the well educated sensible parishioner who until her illness ran church affairs with the up most dignified capability. So when the pastor walked into her room I looked over to watch her masterfully change her expression from giddy to complete composure (so I could imitate her of course after he left), but she looked a little winded, and slightly like she was struggling to find her words.
Then all of a sudden she sits up, and blurts out “Good morning reverend yummy pants!” I saw her face as she realized what she had said, and then I saw the open mouthed shock hit the young pastor’s face before he quickly composed the shock to a warm smile. I completely lost myself in hysterical laughter! Then “Bette Davis” with her red face trying to rectify the moment says to the pastor “So do ever watch the show Reba?” 😉
ok, I realized I got into stuff that was going on but not a lot about what I ate so I’ll kind of go over that a bit too. I didn’t realize some of you guys were getting anything out of this, I kind of felt like I was just ranting about the flows and ebbs going on. But COOL, if you get something out of it…. even that a slacker like me can do it, so you CERTAINLY can, that’s awesome.
When we picked blueberries, yes I ate some. At most, a dozen. The crop was a bit tart this year. Usually, I eat so much I poop purple. They are mid-range in the carb friendly scale.
Spawn has been AWESOME about learning low carb, and I’ve even discovered a pizza recipe I plan to try when I can devour half the damn thing. I’ll share it if it ends up worth it (why waste your time otherwise, right?). I think I might be able to convert G-uno to my darkside on this one… seriously, fucking cream cheese in the crust? Oh hellya.
Spawn has usually used meat+veg as their go-to for dinner (though they still hesitate to think of meat as low carb sometimes), only occasionally attempting to assemble a salad with mucho questions and input from my end while they do it. However, they make me small portions and sometimes supplement with another shake if they don’t feel it was enough.
The 4th soiree at the Yankee’s? I ate the hell out of some food, man. This is the same person who digs at me about never eating or never leaving for lunch. I had a small steak, a burger with cheese on it only (no bread, no toppings), 4 whole tortilla chips and a mutha load of watermelon salsa (I’m addicted to new things and this was really new to me AND watermelon was oddly enough on the low carb list of fruits… weird I know), or better known as probably .75 to 1 full cup of salsa. I had some of my own onion dip, but I brought baby carrots (ate 5) and celery (ate half a damn bunch) so I had things to dip with. I did not eat at all before we got there, other than water.
I had one sugar-free daiquiri (and was soundly mocked for drinking a girly-looking pink drink) with about half a cup of muscato added to it. I have no damn clue what the hell was in that last one, I just promised to pay penance for it later. I was so full, I was in pain and this was over 4+ hours. Of course, I ate nothing the rest of the day.
Generally, I stick with crepes when I go for breakfast choices, since they have less egg and they are less filling than most omelets. The exception being Kim and her little cafe. Her omelets are very light and just perfectly filling, with one piece of rye toast. Kim is a very, very health-minded cook, but you’d never know it just from the taste. She scoffs at store bought salad dressings, for example, and makes everything herself. Even the rice she uses is a lower GI, diabetic-friendly kind (no, I haven’t tried it, its still too many carbs).
I have days where I get super hungry, so I eat. I have experimented with old places I like to go and see how I can finagle in a way I can eat it, but for good. My favorite burger joint is more than happy to nix the bread and add a salad. That’s cool. They don’t even drown it in dressing (on the side) since I always leave most of it behind.
I’m mostly surprised how much I am not craving sugar. I used to HAVE TO HAVE chocolate after dinner. It never had to be much, but I had to have it. I suppose the protein shakes abate the sweet cravings since they too are sweet, but its not the same… I’m not missing it. I miss mac and potatoes, but I found that a tiny bite of Spawn’s is enough to give me the mental happy high without the physical repercussions. I’m cool with that too.
The only problem I’m still having issues with is what the hell can I use in my coffee aside from sugar. Splenda has been my go to, but I hate it.
- honey? kind of misses the point.
- Stevia? I will punch someone in the throat if I have to taste that shit again.
- xylitol? isn’t that the shit in gum?
Has anyone found a sugar alternative that actually doesn’t taste like shit and can be enjoyed without gagging in a hot beverage?
I did finally have to confess to work, though I said basically it was a low-carb experiment to bring down my A1C. I did NOT tell anyone I was eating super low calorie as well. Again, didn’t want to hear any shit from the all knowing VP.
My diet buddy is about to break the 200 mark, their main goal. Their sugar has not responded as well as mine has, but they have been kicking ass on putting in more activity in their routine and knocking off the weight.
They got kind of frustrated with me, because their goal was 15% of their body weight.
friend: “What’s your goal?”
me:”to kick diabetes’ ass.”
friend:”by doing what?”
me:”eating low to no carb and low cal for 8 weeks, with a steady but slow increase, then low cal cycling until my A1C gets and stays normal and I feel better.”
friend:”you don’t have a pound goal?”
me:”I don’t want my stomach to touch the steering wheel? I dunno, I haven’t weighed myself since the doc did it.”
friend:”… but what do you want to be able to do after this is moving to a more normal intake?”
me:”keep up with three nutso kids while they go trick ‘or’ treating… this time, on foot.”
friend:”I guess that’s a goal.”
me:”I’ll know I’m back to normal then, or at least getting there.”
As I said, I was really super focused on numbers a long time ago when new parenthood created someone in the mirror I didn’t recognize. It is enough to make one crazy because bodies don’t work by logic. You can’t figure out the calories burned, and math out to .00001% how much you ate in calories a day and have that always create a certain amount of loss. I had a fucking spreadsheet man, I was serious!
Too much paprika may make YOU swell, while everyone else on the damn planet pisses like a racehorse when they eat it. Too much olive oil may give YOU the shits and generally make you feel bad. Everyone is different. Apparently, I’m fine with skim milk or raw milk, but anything in between is not ok. Most other dairy products are fine with me. But as a diabetic, if its low-fat… its high in sugar and I need to stay away from it.
The one thing I wasn’t paying attention to was how I was feeling. Maybe if I had, I might have noticed something was wrong before it become a nightmare of a half dozen years.