Sunday, March 30, 2014

Are you having trouble hearing lately? Maybe this will help!

So, I tend to not look at my blog stats very often. I don't have any real reason to. But blog stats are a newer feature offered within Blogger these days, so it's easier than it used to be, and every once in a while I check out how many people are reading, and where they came from, etc.

This recent search phrase is one of my faves EVAR: "can guys get ovarian cysts"

Someone actually looked that up, and then came to my blog to find the answer!!!

Ok, so in case anyone comes to this page searching for an answer to that specific question, first of all, I hope you are under the age of 12. And if you ARE under 12, then go outside and play, and get off the computer dammit! You're wasting your youth!!!

If you're OVER 12, well, I can't help you. Your parents obviously didn't love you enough to explain the basics about how your body works, and I'm assuming that if you need to search this kind of shit on Google, they not only didn't love you much, they are also kind of stupid and likely are complete dickheads. I'm guessing that info doesn't come as a big surprise, though. I mean, they are YOUR parents, after all!

I don't know if I want to be responsible for answering that question for anyone, though. So I'll leave you with this: if guys could get ovarian cysts, they would happen in their ears. So if you're having any trouble hearing at all, go to your doctor ASAP. Let them know that you want to make sure you don't have ovarian cysts in your ears, because you've heard that can be a painful condition. (OMG, the PAIN, you guys. So, sooo painful!) If your doctor looks at you like you're crazy, or laughs a bit, it's ok...that's just because they don't expect most guys to know about this condition, especially because men who go to their doctors for help with their hearing are few and far between.

I hope this helps! Good luck with those cysts, men.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Oh GOD. The fat person is writing about being fat again. ::sigh::

I’ve wanted to write a blog post for a while about fat shaming, because it’s been so prevalent all over the place recently. Hell, it’s been prevalent for the last 40 years of my life (I am 40 years old, fyi), so I can see that it’s not just going to get better without a heck of a lot of work! It’s the last frontier, it seems like, for “acceptable” judgment of others.

People I know and love that have been blessed with a fabulous metabolism often make observations about overweight people that strike me as being offensive. Skinny comedians like Joel McHale make offhanded fat people comments that are meant to be funny, but just aren’t. People that I don’t know make comments about fat people basically not mattering in the grand scheme of things, and it makes me want to punch a wall and cry at the same time.

But then I go to watch a comedian like Patton Oswalt, who is known for being a bit overweight and not really doing much about it, and in fact making jokes at all of his shows, it seems like, about how some day he’ll be rolling out on stage in a scooter because he’ll just be too big to walk. And we laugh at that because the idea of it is funny to us.

But why is that ok with me? And then when someone like Joel McHale (who is in pretty great shape) makes fat jokes about other people, it’s super-offensive and not funny at all to me. Is it just because it’s the self-deprecating humor thing that makes it ok? That if we make fat jokes about ourselves, it’s alright, but if other people do (especially if they’re in what’s deemed to be “good” shape), then it’s not alright?

Why are we ok with that?

(Still, I don’t know how to stop liking Patton, and other comedians like Jim Gaffigan and Mindy Kaling, so I’m conflicted with that!)

What it comes down to for me is that the constant struggle that I’ve had with my weight all my life shouldn’t be fodder for other peoples’ discussions, or even their thoughts. It shouldn’t be a concern for anyone else. I don’t have to explain it to anyone, and it is my choice to discuss and explore the issue with my therapists (that’s right, there is more than 1 person I pay on a regular basis to try to help me with my body and mind balance) and my personal trainer.

The impetus for this post has been stuck in my brain since it occurred a couple of weeks ago. My gorgeous, wonderful, hardworking and awesome niece found herself face to face with an asshole, as will happen from time to time in this world. Apparently, he was rude, judgmental, and patronizing, and my niece was venting about the exchange she had with this jackass out on her Facebook wall. According to additional comments she made in the discussion that followed, the asshole in question was quite a bit overweight. I honestly wished (silently) that she hadn’t mentioned that fact, but just kept reading the comments to see if any other info about the exchange was shared. And then a friend of hers popped in to say that my niece shouldn’t worry about what the guy said, because the asshole lost his ability to have an opinion about anything about 170 pounds ago.

I try to stay out of discussions like that, especially with my niece involved, because I know that in the past, she’s felt bad about certain issues she’s brought up that I’ve commented on. But that just fired me up, and I jumped into the fray. I mentioned that what it came down to was that the asshole was an asshole regardless of his size. Had he been a ripped and fit asshole, would it have made the situation better?

And also, the idea that there are people out there that feel that overweight people simply don’t matter, and that their opinions are worthless because of their size? Even in the case of an asshole behaving badly, that just makes me so sad. The fat-shaming needs to stop.

Another friend of my niece agreed with me, but then the whole discussion ended pretty abruptly right there. Which kind of sucked. I felt badly about the possibility that I made my niece feel bad in any way, but I also honestly want her to consider the words that come out of her head a little more carefully. Not that it’s my position to “teach” her or anything...I guess I just hope to be a good influence, more than anything else.

I am considerably overweight right now. I struggle with it almost every minute of every goddammed day. I work out, I try to eat well, I drink more than I should, and I can’t stop thinking about what will “fix” me. Plastic surgery? Appetite suppressants? Yoga? Are my hormones off balance? Do I have a disease? Will hypnosis work to reset my brain? Should I lift more weight when I work out with my trainer? Should I walk for an hour and a half instead of just an hour 3 – 4 times a week? Should I eat more protein? More fiber? Will better and more sleep help? If I journal about my feelings, will that help me keep from eating and drinking them? If my mom and dad were still alive, would I be as big as I am? If I stop thinking about it so fucking often, will the weight start to slip off? How do I fucking STOP THINKING ABOUT IT?

This is what it’s like inside my brain on any given day. Those questions swirl around as I wake up, do the dishes, take a shower, buy tickets for baseball games, go to the movies, walk down the street in a city I’m visiting…always, always, always.

Those 600 pound people that allowed their journey with their weight loss to be filmed and put on TV for, I don’t know…entertainment purposes? Educational purposes? Why the fuck would they do it? WHY? People look at them and have even MORE reason to judge them and others like them. They see them making poor food choices, and trying to take an “easy” way out with some sort of surgery so they can get to a more acceptable 200 -300 pounds, at which point they will continue to be judged for being overweight. And the cycle will never end for them.

It never ends for ANY of us. I judge myself enough for everyone, dammit. We all do. And be careful about lying to yourself about that fact. The self-doubt…it is human. It is totally normal, and it’s what keeps most of us from being total assholes 100% of the time.

I’m not saying that we should all be overweight and be happy with it.

I’m not saying that it’s easy to quit judging, and so we should all just stop doing it.

I’m just saying that it takes effort. It all takes effort. I am fucking exhausted by the effort it takes for my attempts at being a better person to be successful. And I often fail. It’s on me to get back up after those failures and to recognize them for what they are, and to not let them get the better of me.


But, dammit, I’m not going to stop trying.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Why do I take this shit so seriously?

These decisions shouldn't be so hard, people. But I take them very seriously, for some reason. 

Maybe it's because the lights we chose for our bathroom remodel wound up being kind of disappointing. I don't know.

Anyway, I've been looking for lights for the new basement space for the last few weeks. I've decided several times on different options in that time. I wish I could put up around 7 lights, and have them all go together with the design in the space, and with each other, and to magically cost our budgeted amount.

Since we don't live in Crazy Land, though, I had to decide on 1 pendant light for the bar area, 1 light for over the game table, 1 light for over the couch in the TV area, and 2 sconces for the fireplace wall. 

I ordered them today. THERE WILL BE NO TURNING BACK! 

Unless, of course, I change my mind when they get here, and I send them back. Eh-em. 

Here are the lights I picked...
This will go over the game table...I love the circles. This will look great with the wainscoting we selected.
This is the pendant for the bar area. Matches the game table light, since they'll be in the same part of the basement as each other.
These are the sconces I chose for the fireplace wall. It's going to look so pretty!
This one...I'm still not sure about. I love it to pieces. But the color in the picture is questionable...it's just supposed to be a frosted glass shade, but it looks flesh toned, or almost pinkish in the picture. I'm giving it the benefit of the doubt. It will be over the couch in the TV area. Crossing fingers that it works!
Picking out details like this helps this early part of the process be less boring, I think. They finished the framing this week, and the electricians are here today and likely early next week running all the lines and setting up the cans for the recessed lights, and apparently we'll get drywall started next week...that should be a bit more fun. But right now, it's just dirty and messy and I CAN'T WAIT TO SIT IN MY NEW BASEMENT AAUUUGGGHHHH! SO EXCITED!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Termites can go suck it.

Pretty soon after we moved into our house back in 2011, we discovered a termite issue. The whole house is just wood. Wood on wood on more wood. And apparently, the way the foundation in the garage butts up against the wall in the dining room somehow created a very hospitable environment for the buggars. They moved in, and tore some shit UP.

We knew this. We were aware there might be issues in the future, even though we eradicated the issue as soon as we discovered them. 

And that future is HERE, muthafuckas. DAMMIT.

There are two support beams that cross each other in the basement. For some reason, Leo was feeling one of them when the demo was completed, and found some damage on it. So when the framers came in, they checked it out even further, and found that just about the entire beam had been chewed up. The termites had started at the top, and then burrowed in to the center of the beam, and chewed it up from inside for quite a distance.

Lovely. 
Sad support beam!
Thankful that we discovered the issue, but I still have no idea how much that little detour cost us. Can't wait to find out! ::gag::
They had to build a temporary support wall while they fixed up the beam issue. Just terrifying to think about what we've had stacked on top of that rotten beam all this time!
I hate to think about the scary business. So instead, I'm focusing on the fun changes that are happening. YAY!

Building in some new architectural details begins with the framing. I showed our contractor this photo when we were discussing the project, prior to his design being pulled together:

I didn't know if there was any way to do something similar, but said it would be neat if we could work it into the design somehow. After the initial budget came back with a CRAZY high number, we talked about ways we could cut it down, and the curved doorway was one of the changes that was suggested. It's cheaper to just have a square doorway, so that's the way we went instead.

We've got a little hallway where the office and workout room entrances are, so that's where the detail will go...

I'm pretty excited about it! Plus, maybe it's helping to hold the rest of the house up. :/

Stupid termites.

This week is a less than exciting one around here again. HVAC is here today. Electrical and stuff will probably be happening, too. So it might be quiet on the blog front for a little bit. We'll see. Other stuff IS going on in my life, so I suppose I could talk about that...

But right now? It's treadmill time. Yaaaayyyyy...

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

This week: framing. Yaaaayyy...

It's going to be a pretty boring week around here, I think. When it comes to updates on the basement remodel, anyway. The framing guys are here, putting up walls and that sort of junk. They couldn't come yesterday...for some reason. So they're here today putting up walls where there were none before, and closing in spaces that were formerly open. I'll have pics to put up tomorrow, but as of right now, they're still banging around down there.

Earlier, they shut off my cable. I don't really know why. Something about it being in the way of where a wall needed to go. I was all, "Ok, but...I was working. And my internet is through my cable." The lead guy seemed to think this was pretty funny. I don't know if he's one of those people who make awkward jokes when they get embarrassed, or what. But it was a little off-putting. He was all, "Sorry I interrupted cartoon hour!" Maybe he's more used to working in houses where chicks are home during the day with their kiddos? I dunno. But I was watching HGTV when he shut down the cable. Not that it even mattered...it was that I had 4 different windows open in Chrome, and when the cable went off, he was damned lucky I wasn't in the middle of something super-important. (I was just researching some shit at the time. Internet history took me back where I needed to go easily enough when I got back online.)

I have the TV on as background noise. I'm not up here sucking down bon bons and watching daytime TV on my ass, ok? Sheit.

It wasn't a big deal...I took that opportunity to head to the grocery store to gather supplies for Mardi Gras dinner. (Which will be an ecclectic mix of risotto and kalbi ribs...yum!) And when I got home, I was on the phone at the time, and walked in to find my TV blasting. Um, WTF? I heard the dude yelling up the stairs at me, but I ignored him because of that whole on the phone thing. And then I walked over to find the remote to turn the TV back off. Head framer dude came bounding up the stairs repeating his joke about the "cartoons being on again", and I turned to show him that I was on the phone, actually, and I said, "I thought I had turned the TV off before I left." He said he'd turned it on, which was fine I guess...it was nice of him to make sure that he'd gotten the cable back up and running.

But goddammit, man!

Tomorrow, I think I'll head out to Starbucks to work. :/