Thursday, March 31, 2005

The sound of music...

... is back in my life...

Once upon a time, I had the radio turned to music practically all the time.
Until I got busy and music sort of got squeezed out of my life.
My job was a thinking job and music made my brain dance.
And a dancing brain isn't conducive to thinking.
At least not for the kind of thinking I needed to do.

Then I discovered talk radio.
Mostly for the weather and traffic when I started working and driving to work.
With Boston traffic that can change on a dime, it was always turned to talk radio that had regular traffic reports - every ten minutes.

And I sort of forgot about music.
My brain didn't have room for it - what with all the thinking and talking going on.

Until now.
Joseph got me the iPod recently.
I am having a blast downloading CD's to my laptop, downloading it to the iPod.
And as I download, I have my Bose Wave Acoustic II headphones on, listening and listening.
My heart sings again.
My soul dances once more.
And I weep from meeting an old friend - remembering the days when music and dance filled my life.

How do you measure the size and value of a gift?
It started with such a small thing.
A gesture of love from my Hunny Bunny.
A small gift - after all, the iPod Mini isn't all that large.
Not in size, but immense in meaning...
Words can't express the world he gave back to me...

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

What a day...

Back from Dallas and I've had back to back meetings - catching up and debriefing management on my trip...

Nothing new to report other than that I am totally exhausted - which isn't really new at all since that is a steady state for me...

The pope is sick...
The media just needs to catch up...

Terry Shiavo... there's something weird about this whole thing...

Anyway.
I rushed to catch the train.
Just made it!
I ran not even a half mile to catch it and I had to stop half way there...
My lungs burned.
My throat burned.
My eyes even hurt!
My heart was pounding.
I sucked wind big time.
I am so deconditioned
And THAT sucks BIG TIME!!!!!

Exercise Note.
Nothing. And I feel like a fat cow.

Weigh-In Wednesday.
I've lost a pound of the 2.2 pounds I gained back last week.
Sigh...

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Good Intentions...

I had such good intentions today.
Meet with people, get things done, go to lunch at Venice Italian Restaurant on North MacArthur Blvd - they have best chicken marsala!!! And meet up with Dallas Dead Chris Hughes!

But I got to the office today and six people came at me...
meeting after meeting...
had to cancel lunch plans...
had meetings through lunch....
dealt with issues back in Boston...
meet meet meet...

Then off to the airport...

Finally had lunch.
At 4:30pm.
At DWF airport.
TGIFriday's...
It was surprisingly good.
Nothing like a little hunger to make the mundane look like gourmet...
Had myself a well-earned Nut Brown Ale...

On the plane at 5:30...
fly fly fly...

And my Wonderful Hunny Bunny and the Dumb Dingle Doggie came to meet me at the airport.
And it was past everyone's bedtime.
But I was home and happy to be there!

Next time, I told Chris, I am gonna go alone so I can do what I want.
And add another day so that I can take it a bit easier and I won't have to cancel lunch!!! HFFFF!!!

Exercise Note.
ARE YOU KIDDING???
With the kindaday that I had???

Monday, March 28, 2005

Whirlwind...

It's been a whirlwind.
Got up, packed, went to the airport, flew to Dallas.
Drove to the office, had lunch.
Why is it that every office cafeteria is Just Bad???
Had meetings.
Left the office, checked in, had dinner...

And as I look back, I did nothing.

The only bright spot of the day was talking to my Hunny Bunny.

The Gaylord Texan is a huge complex in Grapvine and it's very nice.
It's also very huge. When you walk in, the whole thing personifies Texas.
I still like the Four Seasons better.
The Gaylord is a different kind of "nice" than the Four Seasons.
It's equally plush and luxurious but has a "edge" to it that is very "Texan."
I don't know how to truly explain that.
The Four Seasons is the kind of nice that is very European, refined, sophisticated...
The Gaylord is more...well... Texan.
Well. That was helpful, wasn't it?

Exercise Note.
Nothing. I expended energy in a whirlwind of travel...

Sunday, March 27, 2005

On the other hand...

So, I think I screwed up the car today. Again.

The Crewed (aka 'crude') Run was today.
I was one of the cars supporting the runners.
Anyway... at mile 11, I pulled into a grassy area and thought I was going over a clump of grass. I was. Except the tall grass from last season was hiding a wooden rail road tie that was being used as sort of a edge guard for a lawn. A big clunk...clunk... funny sounds ensued... difficulty in accelerating... funny rattling noises...

I looked under the car and saw nothing obvious.
I didn't really know what I was looking for...
short of seeping, funny smelling liquids and an obvious crack...

So, now we have to take it into a mechanic to see what's happening.
The odometer isn't working either.

Joseph thinks it might be the intake manifold.
I have no. idea. what. that. is.
I only know it's WAY expensive!
He also thinks there are other things going on, too.

And... he doesn't think I should plan on getting my Louis Vuitton iPod case anytime soon...
ARG!!!!!!!!!

Happiness is....

Watching Carolina make it to the Final Four...
Downloading CD's onto the new iPod...
Using my Bose Wave Acoustic Noise-reducing headphones for music instead of for sleeping...

Happy Easter!

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Ju Beas Inna Pod

So... JuBee. That's what MJ's kid calls me. JuBee. Anyway...

Yup... Got me an iPod.
Yup yup yup...
Actually, it was a surprise from my WONDERFUL Hunny Bunny!
We went to Trader Joe's this morning and he stepped into the Strawberries to get a CD while I was at Trader Joe's. I didn't know it, but he ran over to the MicroCenter across the way and picked up an iPod Mini for me. He must have got tired of me obsessing over whether I should get one, and searching for pretty iPod holders on the internet. Dang. I would have obsessed about it for a couple of years. And whether I actually got one or not is hard to say. Anyway... He met me at TJ's and told me he got me a present. Of course, since he didn't tell me what it was or give it to me right then and there, I prompty forgot about it....

Until... we got home...
then put away the groceries...
then prepared and ate lunch...
then watched Law&Order Criminal Intent on DVR...
then watched Law&Order Trial By Jury on DVR...
then I went over to the table to get my laptop started up...
And there it was... RIGHT ON THE LAPTOP!
Three. Hours. Later.

And it was there in front of me the WHOLE TIME that I was eating lunch!
GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am so oblivious!

It's blue.
As close to Carolina blue as possible.
It's cute.
And I have loaded the software.
And I am now loading up CD's.

It's a mini.
6 gigs.
Holds 1500 songs.
Yup. That's about good for me!

So much to do...
I gotta get ACCESSORIES!!!
I gotta get a CUTE carrier for it - preferably by a good designer...
I gotta load up more CD's...
I gotta create playlists....

AGH!!!!!!!!!!!!
So much to do...

Uh... excuse me while I go into hiberation...
Happy happy happy!!!!

Dang! I wonder what I can obsess about now...
How about a Porsche Boxter?
OH! I know!!! BETTER YET!!!
How about a Porsche Carerra GT?
Happy happy happy!!!

Exercise Note.
Elliptical - 40 minutes
Total Body weights - a little of this a little of that...
I noticed a LOT of iPods today...

Random Thought: PT

I am wondering if I can stop going to PT.
I can do those same exercises at the gym.
Speaking of the gym...
I really need to go today and get in the Elliptical and those PT exercises that I didn't do yesterday.
Gawwwwwwwwd.

Showdown...

Carolina won.
1 point.
It was so unexciting that they showed coverage only ONCE in 45 minutes.
But the Big-Damn-D was all they could talk about - about TEN TIMES in 45 minutes.
Who CARES if they got upset??

And they even covered Big Fat Dancing Men more than they showed Carolina footage.
They showed them TWICE!!
Made the Sportcenter Top Ten TWICE!!!!
Who CARES about a bunchabigfat men DANCING at half time?
WHO CARES???

Well, Carolina won - and that is ALL I care about.
Except for the Big-Damn-D losing. I care about that, too.
:oD

Friday, March 25, 2005

And just for the record...

I blew off PT today.
I got to work and got bogged down.
I lifted my head and it was mid-morning in the middle of a dan presentation - another one - and I just couldn't get away.
As it was, I only got half my list done.

So, it's a rest day.
So there.

Of Dingus and Fishes

Joseph told me about Dingus Day this morning.
Huh? What's a Dingus Day?
Dingus Day.
What is it?
Dingus Day.
GAH!!!! WHAT IS A DINGUS DAY?
It's when men chase the women and it involves pussy willows?
HUH?
Yes.
Serious?
Yes. Google it. It started in Poland.

So I look it up and sure enough, it's a Polish Tradition...
Dingus Day : The day after Easter Sunday. Men would chase women around with
buckets of water and the women would hit them with switches. This
tradition began in Poland, and involved pussy willows.

Pussy willows???

But before all that, Joseph informs me that since it's Good Friday, we should have Fish tonight for dinner.
I stare at him.
And tomorrow we should have pasta because Sunday is the long run with the Deads - the Annual Crude run.
Fish tonight? Yes. I am still stuck there.
Huh?? Are you kidding?
No.
Huh?

So I ask when he became so religious. All he did was smile - I guess he was enjoying the morning...

So, I didn't get it... I mean he lives the good Christian life every day - he is one of the most karmic, cosmic, good Buddhist, good Christian, good Confucian people I know. He transcends all of the earthly religious stuff. Sure, he was baptised Catholic, but still...

I am convinced that my fence straddling between being good or bad made God so exasperated that he decided to push me over a little more to the good side by introducing me to Joseph. And there you are... I am a better person now than I would be without him... It's interesting since all the good things I've been wanting to do in my life didn't happen until I met and married Joseph... I'll save that for another post.

So, I am not sure why I am so surprised that he wants to have fishfor dinner tonight - other than the fact that he hardly ever eats fish...

Now I am thinking to myself... maybe I should haul my butt on up to St. Paul's Cathedral (Episcopal) for noon service today....

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Of course, staying over in NH, 15 minutes away from the office, didn't help me get to the office any earlier than I typically do. Only 30 minutes earlier. BUT... I am NOT cranky because I didn't have to get up at 5:30 this morning! Of course, I got up at 6am, which is still 30 minutes earlier than typical... so basically, staying over in NH was a wash. And I didn't sleep so well last night. I didn't bring my MyoCalm to help me relax and sleep deeply so I felt like I was just dozing and I remember waking enough to be vaguely aware that I wasn't getting good sleep - this happened about three times.

There is this one guy in class who makes me crazy. It doesn't help that I have no idea what he does. I've dealt with him a few times and each time, it's been about process and HIS learning about our process etc. I've never seen him actually PRODUCE anything. The class is Six Sigma. Some of it is useful and I can use it right away. But this guy has all the answers because he is a process guy and familiar with the stuff. He answers a question and he sits there with a smug look on his face. Ugh. As far as I am concerned he doesn't DO anything. Does he not get it?? Whatever.

The instructor is also doing these fluffy examples - like I really give a shit. Then he also goes into the appendix to talk about statistics. HELLOO!!! If it was RELEVANT, WHY is it in the DAMN Appendix??? And if it isn't, then WHY are we spending 30 minutes on the material!?!?!?! HELLLOOOOOO!!!! I wanted to poke my damn eyes out!!! ARG!!!! And it didn't help that I was STARVING! Anyway... he finally shut up. Thank god.

The good news is that lunch was pizza so I didn't have to dip into my leftover hoard from last night's dinner. There is enough left over for three more people to have a full meal! I suppose I will have it tomorrow for lunch, and maybe on Saturday, too. :oD

And the best news is that my Hunny Bunny is making me dinner tonight.

It's time to leave. Everyone is leaving and it's not even 5:30! The NH office should has early hours!

Exercise Note.
Rest Day.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Random Thought: Exercise Logs

I am so happy that I found the exercise log at nike.com. It's good for planning.

Random Thought: Funny Hunny Bunny

My Hunny Bunny did something really funny last night but I can't talk about it.

AGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh well...

Weighty Matters...

If it's Wednesday, it's weigh in day...
And guess what?
I have gained back the 2.2 pounds I lost in the last three weeks after a week with the niece and nephew. GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And tonights Chinese dinner did go to reduce the total.
This sucks.

Anyway...
I am in NH - staying overnight because of a 2-day class.
I know I know I know.
I only an hour or so away.
As it is, I had to get up at 5:30 ungodly AM this morning.
I left work at 7pm.
I ate dinner at 8pm.
And I only drove about 15 minutes to the hotel.
Which happens to be a Marriot Residence Inn.
I LOVE THESE HOTELS!!!
It's a STUDIO.
With a king size bed, full bath, full galley kitchen, couch, chair, desk, kitchen table. full size fridge, dishwasher, microwave, coffeemaker, utensils and dishes, etc etc etc..., a TV, phone, and WIFI!
And it's only $99 a night.
Unbelievable.
Anyway... add on the hour and a half drive and guess what?
I'd be bitchy from not eating and cranky and tired.
Not only that, I'd have to get up again at 5:30 am tomorrow to repeat!

So, the wisdom of my New Boss - saying that I should definitely stay over.
Which is interesting because he lives a little further away and he left work AFTER I did and he is NOT staying over. Hmmm...

Tomorrow is going to bring 10+ inches of snow - so sayeth the abominable weather guessers... At least I won't have to drive the highway in that mess - if it happens.

On a side note... I just purchased a domain name for a website. Happy happy happy... now I just have to take a class on creating websites...

Exercise Note.
Elliptical - 20 minutes (1.28 miles)
Stretching afterwards.
I have noticed that when I do the elliptical backwards, my thighs and knees get a workout. They feel as if they are actually running downhill. Right now I am doing 5 minues forward and 5 minutes backward.
Tomorrow is a rest day.

Ay. Tee.

That's right.
Ay. Tee.
As in EIGHTY.
Joseph ran 80 miles last week.
I am still trying to wrap my mind around that.

When did he do this?
I haven't really noticed him missing more than usual.
He's there when I wake up.
He's there when I come home.
He's home all the time as far as I can see.

But somehow, he wasn't home long enough to run 80 miles.

I would have to take the week off from work to do something like this.
In fact, I would have to train for five years to be in a good enough shape to be able to this this.
In double fact, I would have to avoid INJURY before I could even THINK about engaging in something like this.

Yup. Still thinking about this one...

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Exercise Note.
Went to PT.
Did the Elliptical and lots of lower leg exercises.
The PT told me to cut back on the elliptical to 20 minutes.
I guess 30 minutes was pushing it after months of doing nothing.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Rough Seas Ahead...

8:44 am. It's gonna be a tough week.
I have a day filled with meetings today and tomorrow, then I am driving up to the NH office on Wednesday where I will spend the night because of a class on Wednesday and Thursday. Friday is Good Friday, a Holiday here because the market is closed, but I am working. I HAVE to try and get ahead of this pile of paper on my desk. And of course, since I am out of the office on Wednesday and Thursday, I will be cramming a WHOLE WEEK'S WORK into today and tomorrow.

On the ride in this morning, I got on the wrong train. Of all the ones I could get onto, I had to pick THIS ONE!
Blah blah blah - yadda yadda yadda...
There was a group that you could tell probably rode in to work together every single day.
Probably have been for years.
Blah blah blah - can we PLEASE have a little QUIET on a Monday morning!
One woman was talking about her "idiot boss" and how her group can't go to lunch together because the last time they went out, the projector didn't work and it turned into a crisis when the boss couldn't find anyone to help...
Blah blah blah - do people not understand how touchy it is to talk about work (especially your BOSS) in public? Don't people realize that Big Brother is watching? And that someone they are sitting next to might be a relative? Or at the very least, a friend who might tell another friend who might tell about friend and so on until it reaches the ears of the idiot boss???
Who's the idiot, then?
People are so stupid.

Okay. Gotta go to a meeting....

8:47. The company that is our cafeteria (yes, we have a trendy subsidiary of our company that runs our cafeteria - they are like any other restaurant off the street but they also do the cafeteria because they belong to us... TMI) is raffling of 10-pound chocolate eggs. Saw it in the daily online news email. TEN POUND CHOCO-LET EGGS! WHY would ANYONE need TEN POUND CHOCOLATE EGGS???? WHY WHY WHY?????? Exactly how BIG is one of those things, anyway?? I might have to go down and late a looksee....

Okay. I really have to get going...

1:25pm. Just got back from lunch with group. I took them out to Penang. And I. Am. Stuffed. To the damn gills!!! I have that dreaded slothful feeling you get right before you fall asleep...

5:01pm. I do not feel like going to the gym. I am staring at a pile of work and it's daunting to think that I can walk away from this so that I can have an hour to myself. I do not want to go home too late and feeling guilty about it...WHY??? I. Don't. Know. :o[

Exercise Note.
Elliptical with arms - 30 minutes.
Stretching cool down.
My ankle is a bit sore.
I think that 30 minutes might have been overdoing a bit.
Heavy painkillers to come...

Senseless Fears...

I have some fears that some would think are senseless.
I guess not a day goes by when I don't think of at least one of them.
So in an effort to chase away the demons, I am writing them down.


  1. Falling down the stairs
  2. Heights - any kind - going up isn't a problem but I need a rescue team to get back down
  3. Having a party (or opening a store) and no one shows up
  4. Driving away from the gas station with the hose still attached to the car
  5. Elevator cables snapping with me in the elevator
  6. Being pushed off the subway train platform onto the rails
  7. Walking by a car and having it blow up
  8. The car catching on fire - with me in it
  9. Dying of a heart attack in the middle of nowhere
  10. Coming to work (or other public place) taking off my coat and finding that I don't have on my pants or skirt or just my slip
  11. Deep water - the blue abyss...

A couple of these are rooted in past events... I guess the next step to tacking senseless fears is to acknowledge what might have happened in the past by writing it down. I might do this. I might not. We'll see

Sunday, March 20, 2005

You're Getting Sleepy....

Feeling sleepy all day long.

This afternoon, Joseph ran a race. We met Frank and Sara there. Joseph has run with Frank before but this was the first time for me and Sara. They are very nice people and hopefully we will get together soon. I told them that we read their blog and they seemed surprised. LOL! If they only knew how many people really read their blog! :oD

Afterwards, we went to Blue Ribbon BBQ where I had real NC BBQ which is pulled pork. With real NC hot vinegar. And green beans with pork and fat back and simmered until soft! YUM! And the cornbread was excellent, too, as was the collards. No beer though. Bummer. No matter. I'll make up for it tonight. We are having Thai chicken. If I can stay awake until then.

Exercise Note.
I am thinking more and more about starting up that exercise program.
More than I was thinking about it yesterday.
This is forward progress.

Empty...

I have an empty space in my house.

We took Elizabeth to the airport this morning.
After hugs all around, we watched her walk down to the gate and she slowly disappeared from sight.

It's very quiet.
I already miss the "noisiness" - her chatter and her laughter.
And she was here for only a week.
I can't imagne how parents must feel after their kids leave the house.
After years of chatter and laughter, the silence must be deafening.

John says she had a good time.
Hopefully, this means she will be back for a longer visit soon.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

John just told me about Post It Notes for your desktop.
Just went and downloaded the free version.
I LOVE it!
I write everything down on paper and it's getting to be a big pile of paper.
This way, I can just have virtual stickies on my computer and take all my notes with me!

Busy day today. We took the Dingle Doggie to the vet. I witnessed first hand how she almost jumps into Joseph's lap to hide from the doctor. This time, she also had me to squeeze behind. It was rather amusing, which is good since I am usually cranky at EIGHT AYYY EMMM in the MORNING on a SATURDAY!

We met Joseph's sister and her family for Cirque Dreams.
They had an act with contortionists.
I always see the commercial for Cirque De Soleil on TV but after about ten minutes, I always lose interest. I mean, how many contortionist routines can you sit through? And in a two hour show, you are bound to lose interest. I mean... after the first couple of acts, don't all contortions look similarly painful?? This Cirque De Soleil is different. They had hanging acts, power acts, balancing acts, and a few other acts. It was really really good and I would definitely go back to another show.

Afterwards, we went to Niketown where I bought a couple of bags. One is a nice gym bag with big pockets on the ends, and mesh and dividers in the middle - I've never really scene anything like it. Then another one is a smaller version that I can carry back and forth to work. Did I mention that I love bags? :oD

Then we met John and Elizabeth at Niketown and walked to Tapeo for tapas. Then to Ben and Jerry's for dessert. And all this after I made Yakimandu for lunch! GAH!!! I must get back on the eating better wagon.

Exercise Note. Walked a mile to two. That's it. I think my ankle is better. As I was walking around, I stepped on a couple of uneven surfaces and my ankle caught itself. I am VERY happy about this turn of events. Maybe next week, I might do some exercise. I am still thinking about it. It takes me a while - especially after weeks of inertia. I am thinking, however, that April 1 might be a good day to start. I mean, how appropos to start an exercise program on April Fool's day.

Friday, March 18, 2005

TGIF!

Thank goodness it's the weekend.
So that means I have a whole two days to think about all the work I still have to do.

Joseph made pasta for dinner.
It was wonderful.
I was late from work and couldn't make my meatload and fully fatted mashed potatoes.
So he took care of dinner.
Yum!
Elizabeth liked the sauce.

Elizabeth and I surfed the web for handbags.
Actually it started out as a search for the iPod and pretty iPod cases.
I have a feeling that the iPod will never be a reality but it certainly does send me on some exciting goose chases!
Louis Vuitton has a nice case. So does Juicy.
I might have to get an iPod just to get a case. :o)

Anyway, now John is here.
He just arrived and is sitting down to a gigantic bowl of pasta and sauce.
He had never had Joseph's pasta before.
In the years he's known Joseph, he's HEARD about it but has never had it...
Well... there's a first for everything. :o)

Dream Site...

I found IT! ACK!
It's all about handbags!!
ACK ACK ACK!!!

Now I just have to find one just like it about jackets!

On the Road... AGAIN!

In addition to traveling at the end of the month to Dallas,
next week I am going to Six Sigma training at the NH site.
Well... I live about 50 miles away.
It's a little more than the RI office.
But the ride to NH is the ride from HELL.
Instead of the easy 50 minute high-speed ride at 80-85 mph, the ride to NH is a terrifying, white-knuckle-grip, death-defying ride that takes more than an hour and twenty minutes. It's only four miles further than RI but it takes 30 minutes longer to get there. The people on the roads north of Boston are LUNATICS! They are CRAZY!!! And so many damn accidents.

The class starts at 8am or thereabouts.
That means that I will have to get up around 5am, get into the car at 6am, to arrive there around 7:15 am. That gives me about 45 minutes to recover from the hair-raising ordeal of driving up there. Then since I have to get work done, because we all know that work does NOT stop while we are in class, I will have to work late - probably for another couple or three hours. Which means I won't be home until 9:30pm - oh... did I mention that for some strange reason, the ride home takes ten minutes longer?? Then I have to get up at 5am again and repeat! GAH!

So I mentioned this to my Boss.
He is also going to the same training.
And I told him to beware of me during those two days.
He told me to stay overnight near the office at a hotel so that I won't have to deal with the travel.

...uhhhh....
HUH?

Uh.... okay... well... that's sounds good.
Hmm.
Who'd a thunk that would happen?

As for Six Sigma training.. don't even ask me WHY I am going.
All the managers are being trained.
Six Sigma Lite.
We will also be trained in Project Management Lite.
Because we all know that managers (aka VP's and up) have no brains and could not possibly take the full class and be tested.
NOT that I am complaining or anything...
:oD

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Tonight we went to Bob the Chef's for dinner.
It's a jazz place that serves southern food - cornbread, collards, beans and rice, jambalaya...stuff like that. It's about a mile from us and we had a nice walk there and back. They had a nice quartet that started playing as we were finishing dinner. We stayed through dessert and lingered so we could hear the music.

Elizabeth is great fun.
She is so Korean - she says what she thinks. LOLOL!
I must say that I am absolutely in love with this girl!
She is so mature when it comes to music and her future.
Everything else, she's a 12-year old to me.
I love her smile and her laugh - it's rich and deep and she is unashamed of it.
I love how she covers her mouth when she laughs - I remember doing that until recently when the old habits of a life time slowly fell away with age.
I love how she slaps her hands together when she finds something especially funny.
And how she announces that she is just "sick of tv" and gets up from her legless rocking chair to go to the kitchen, only to come back, sit in the legless rocking chair, and watch figure skating with renewed interest.
I love how she says "whoa" whenever she sees something scary, interesting, startling, or surprising.
I love how she is totally unaware of her "self."

Sometimes I just wanna go over and squeeze her to death, she is so damn cute.
Joseph said the same thing when I told him.
He said that the other day, when she was rocking back and forth in the legless rocking chair, with WILD abandon, he almost went over and gave her a big hug because she was so cute!

We have made plans for the summer in the event her schools and camps all fall through. If she makes it here for the month of June, then we will driver her to the violin camp at Burlington VT after her visit. It will be nice to make a weekend getaway of it.

I will really miss her when she is gone.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Hobnobbing...

Went to a work function tonight while Joseph and Elizabeth went to the North End for dinner.
It was a function to celebrate the people who passed the Project Management Institute Certification. I had one person go and pass, and of course I was invited as his manager.

All the important people were there - the Boss's Boss, the CIO, the Boss's Peers, etc etc etc.
Spent quality time with The Powers talking about the South, Basketball, cars, and where we all came from - very interesting...I found out a lot of interesting personal stuff about them. Given that I am Korean and ask a lot of questions, and given that they think I am funny and non-threatening, the all tell me what I want to know... where they went to college, where they are gonna be retiring, about their wives and families and kids... all pretty interesting. :o) Although I will say that I don't expect any of this to save me from getting a hard time from the CIO...

All in all, I think this went a long way for my career.
But it won't be long-lived...they are all retiring in the next year, give or take a month here or there...
Sigh...

Happiness is...

Watching Elizabeth rock back and forth in the legless rocking chair.
She has taken over the chair.
Joseph has been relegated to the couch.
She rocks back and forth and laughs at whatever is on TV.
Joseph says that he thinks she's there all day long.
Unless she's practicing her violin or out of the house, of course.
He comes home and the remote control is right there, next to the chair.
And he knows she's been sitting in it all day long.
Rocking back and forth.
And making happy laughing sounds!
What a joy!

Weigh In Wednesday

It's been an eat-fest since Elizabeth arrived.
I haven't been as diligent as I have been before.So I thought I might have added a pound or two.Got on the scale this morning and I've lost another 2/10 of a pound.
But given the White Foods I've been eating (white rice in honor of Elizabeth, etc), I am not complaining. In fact, I am thankful I managed to lose anything at all.
But it's time to get back on the wagon...

Exercise Log:
PT - stepmaster and elliptical with ankle exercises

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Random Thought: I hate doing objectives

Ugh...
I can't stand doing objectives.
It's already March!
And the review process for July begins in a MONTH!
Talk about being LATE! GAH!!!

Anyway... only a quarter of my objectives are on my New Boss's objectives.
They all cascade down from the top.
So either his list is incomplete or my life just got 80% easier.
And we all know that THAT isn't a possibility...

So, now I have to talk to him about this and I can't move forward because I hate doing something that I KNOW I will end up redoing if I don't wait.

Damn.

Slo-Mo...

I don't know what is going on this week.
Yesterday, I thought it was Tuesday.
Now that it's Tuesday, I keep thinking it's Wednesday.
Not only that... but I am thinking it's around 3 or 3:30pm on Wednesday as opposed to 1:30 pm.
Which is it, but on Tuesday, so I am more than 24 hours ahead of myself.

The week is going by so slowly!
Not sure why.
I usually complain that I have too much to do and not enough time.
Maybe it's because I am actually getting some things done for a change?
Who knows...

All I know is that I am having to slow myself down and I am not sure I like it.
I am beginning to think that I enjoy stress.
That I LIKE working under pressure.
That I get HIGH off of adrenaline...
and my heart in my throat...
and feeling like I am in a race - even if it's with time...

I think I need a damn vacation!

Happiness is...

getting another bonus that is twice as much as you thought it would be...

Too bad most of it, if not all, is already earmarked for something. Sigh...
It's nice be able to complain about it, though. :o)

I think I need to use a smidgen for a wee celebration.
Hmmm.... think think think... IPOD? Now THAT'S an idea...

Monday, March 14, 2005

Happiness is...

A big bowl of Kimchee Chigae with white rice for dinner.

Yes. That's right. WHITE rice.
This week I am loosening up the diet in honor of Elizabeth.
Traditional Korean White Rice.
WHITE WHITE WHITE!
HAH!

Tomorrow I am taking BROWN rice for lunch with the above-mentioned kimchee chigae, however. No sense in going off the deep end for every single meal!

Phenomenon

Strange thing happened today.
I left work at 4pm, give or take a few minutes.
I left when the sun was still out.
It was the first time in ... oh.... months?

But I had something different to come home to.
Elizabeth.
All I could think about was getting home to spend time with her.
To see her smiling face.
To hear her chatter about her day.
To cook Korean food for her.
And generally hang out together.

For the first time, I felt a little something of what it's like to have kids to come home to.
For the first time, I felt a little tug of having someone at home who kinda counts on you.
She's only seventeen, after all.

And Joseph came home and he and Elizabeth had ice cream together.
Elizabeth laughed at Joe's sarcasm.

And John has decided to come home too.
He will be here Friday for the weekend.
We will try to change Elizabeth's airline ticket to delay her departure by a day - her break ends this week, and John's break from law school is next week.

Elizabeth is more like Joseph.
Whereas, Joseph thinks John more like me.
But we both agree that they are both good kids and their parents are blessed.
And so are we to know them.

We watched a couple of DVR'd shows and generally we hung out.
Like a family.
For the first time, I thought, it's a shame we don't have kids.
This is what it would be like - to have one in high school and another one in law school.
And this weekend, we will know what it's like to have both kids home for a day or two.

And to think that I thought that the biggest regret of my life would be not going to medical school. And now I wonder...

Big Wheel Keep on Turning...

What a day!

Working from the RI office today.
I was in a really good mood driving in and then the darkness set upon me like a veil and by the time I was in the office, I definitely had my game face on...

Given that, it's been an interesting day.
And the wheels have been turning at work... that is for sure!

First, I've been dealing with some internal politics - senior people feeling all out of whack and ignored. I met with every single one of them and I think they are all feeling better. Of course, it will be better going forward because since I reorged the group, I officially have 5 people directly reporting to me now. So much more manageable!

Another item of interest is external politicals - same company, same different division... The guy who leads that group and I have been going through a lot. IHe and I agree that we should be one group. I like the guy immensely and have known him since he walked through the doors of this company. He and I agree that he is just BAD at a bunchastuff that HIS management thinks he should do, blah blah blah.. and come to find out that he thinks that he and his group should be reporting to ME! huh? Anyway... he told me today that he floated the idea by his manager, who wasn't too thrilled about that suggestion the he move his department over to me... duh...

I am going down to Texas (where they are located) at the end of the month to discuss some thigs and so today we went over a bunchastuff at a high level.. he is going to think about it all but in the end, it's the right thing to do and our jobs will be easier for all, so I know that it will happen. I always say... you can come through me NOW or you can come through me LATER, but you will ALWAYS end up COMING THROUGH ME!

So, good stuff at work...

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Nice Korean dinner for Elizabeth tonight.
We decided to eat at home after hemming and hawing about going out.
I like cooking and eating at home more than I do going out.
Burgogi on the table grill, korean spinach, cucumber moo-chim, go-sah-ri (royal fern), cabbage kimchee, and I even made white rice instead of having brown rice. We broke out a bottle of Robert Mondavi red wine - it was wonderful...

It's nice having Elizabeth here.
We did errands together and even made it up to Copley and the Pru after dim sum this morning at Chow Chau City. Yum yum yum...
She fits right in. She has taken over the legless rocking chair! LOL!
And Dingle Doggie loves her alot.

It's going to be a nice week.

Sweet Melody...

Elizabeth is practicing and the house is filled with the soulful sounds of the violin.
I close my eyes and am quite literally swept away.
She is seventeen and so grown up.
She is seventeen and so childlike.
She is filled with contradictions and filled with the complexities of straddling two cultures and two worlds - the world of music and everything else.
She is Korean in so many ways and yet so American...

And she's blunt. Just like me. :o)

Sweet Surprises

Joseph is off running a race this morning.
Normally, I'd be there to see him off and then to watch him finish.
The Dumb Dingle Doggie would be there, too, all waggy tailed and smiling and looking up at me and panting with excitement. And when she sees him, she'd be jerking my arm out of my socket to run after him.

But this morning, I am at home because Elizabeth is here.... Don't want to leave her alone to wake up to an empty house for the first morning of her visit. Of course it saved me from waking up at 6:30am on a Sunday. And I was supposed to walk Dingle Doggie but she showed no interest in going out - she laid right now next to Elizabeth's bed and wouldn't budge. So I let her out the back and she came right back in. I don't know what's going on with that...

Anyway... since I couldn't be at the race, I am making Joseph one of his favorite treats. Cinnamon Buns. We are going to Dim Sum this morning but after a half marathon, he can have afford to eat all the treats he wants!

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Past and Present

Interesting day.

This afternoon, we went to the Bicycle Show at the Cyclorama a couple of blocks away.
It was very good, saw a bunchabiking gear in one place, lots of vendors, etc.
I saw the Serotta guys and saw the people from Wheelworks.
Found out that Wheelworks uses the CompuTrainer as a fitting guide for max efficiency.
I bought one for HWINLIML before the Big Split and I want to get one myself.
I bought five raffle tickets for a Precor stretching machine.
I hope we win it. I had a really good stretch for my lower back!
Then there was the CyclOps stationary trainer... brand new, you adjust the seat and arm positions so that Jopseh and I can get it fitted just for us. The 300 model was awesome.
Hope to get one of those one day, too. :o)

So the big news is that on the way out of there, someone comes over and knocks me on the arm... and I turn around and lo and behold, it's Bruce (aka HWINLIML). He introduced me to Lisa (as in Perkins, as in The Girlfriend). He was all smiles and he seemed glad to see me. He saw Joe and I said, well, you know Joe. Afterwards, Joseph said that he thought he KNEW him but couldn't place him and that he thought he was related to Bruce somehow. And I said, That was Bruce! And then it occurred to me that Bruce was probably trying to place Joseph, as well. Jeez. I assumed they would remember each other. Why would I think that? I have no idea. Whatever.

We also went to the expo for the Run to Remember this morning. I can tell that I am mentally preparing for running. I bought a couple of shirts that are new technology from Mizuno. When the material gets wet with water or sweat, the material HEATS UP! It's great for the winter. I bought a couple of pairs of half zip shirts. Joseph got a couple of pairs and he rain with it in the soaking rain. We were afraid that it would get so heated that we would over heat. He said that it worked well - he wasn't HOT but he was not COLD. Which is quite the feat considering that it was rain freezing to slush - it was NOT a warm day.

Tonight John's sister, Elizabeth, came in to visit us for the week. She goes to the NC School of the Arts and is a VIOLINIST (and damn good, I might add) and it's break week and so she is visiting. What an ordeal for her to get here! She got to the airport at 11am for a 2:45 flight (don't ask.. she's sixteen years old and who knows what she was thinking...), and the flight got delayed so she left at 5:15 and got here at 7:25. Which is only about an hour and ten minutes later than the two and a half hour delay she originally had - she had a connection but then they put her on a direct because of her original flight was cancelled. Ahh... the joys of flying to New England in Winter. :oD

Tomorrow we are going to Dim Sum in Chinatown. She said she wants to EAT. Well.. that's and EASY one. :o)

Friday, March 11, 2005

TGIF...

Due to my THREE HOUR PT SESSION, I left a little late tonight.
I came home and Joseph had made some whole wheat pasta - Rotini with chicken, roasted red peppers, and spinach in caesar sauce. Of course he got the caesar dressing without sugar or fat. :o) It was delicious. Accompanied by a little of the leftover Raffaela Viognier from earlier in the week. Wonderful. I must say that I do have the best Hunny Bunny in the world. :o)) Of course, the whole weekend will be relegated to Basketball. Syracuse is playing and he will hog the TV, sitting in the legless rocking chair (it never had legs - it's not broken) and wearing his Syracuse bucket hat I got for him. But as I sit at the table and glance over to him, I think he is the CUTEST THING IN THE WORLD!!! :oD

I am starting get inspired about working out again.
After this PT session, where my ankle went through contortions and pain, I am confident that my ankle will not fall off my leg if I do anything more than gingerly walk around. Slowly. As infrequently as I can.

As I mentioned, I will count PT as two sort of workouts this week. I am thinking that maybe tomorrow I might get on the bike or go to the gym and do the ellptical. Probably will just get on the bike. I have to go to Trader Joe's and get a few things. Also, we are going to pick up Joseph's number for a race he is running on Sunday. And we are also going to the Boston Bicycle Show.

The other big news is that John's younger sister, Elizabeth (I like to call her Lizzie), is visiting us for a week. She is coming in tomorrow, as long as the snow doesn't try to outdo itself and turn itself into a blizzard. Anyway... we also have to get the front room set up for her so she has a private space. It's important for girls to have a private space.

Anyway... The good news on the workout front is that I actually picked up one of our dozen running magazines and I started to get interested in it.

I guess it's time to work on my exercise schedule....

Back to Fitness...

So, I went to PT.
I just got back.
TWO HOURS LATER.
Actually, more like 3 hours later with travel time.

I was SWEATING.
My ankle was aching.
I have never worked one body part so hard since my old weight lifting days...

I guess I am back in the swing.
I am going to call PT my lifting days.
Next one is next Wednesday.
I can come in...WHENEVER.
Huh? Yup. Whenever...

Now I just have to work on the rest of the body.
Sheesh.

Happiness...

BC LOST!
HAH!

Damn pretenders.

Checking Back In...

As in account.... as in CHECKING account...

So, I found out that if you use online banking and you enter a payment to be sent - oh say, in like three weeks so you don't forget - that payment is virtually debited from your account and you won't get an interest on that account FROM THE TIME YOU ENTERED THE PAYMENT. This is to make sure that you have the amount in your account when they get ready to send it out.

Now that is what a little banker birdie told me.

I sent an email to my banking people and they said I had to call the online banking people instead - a different group. I haven't called them about this yet and not sure when I will have time to since I barely have time to make it to the ladies room. Ahem.

Now I am not sure that there was any disclosure on this.
So Joseph said, it's the law.
I said, since when?
He said, since always.
I said, ALWAYS?
He said, well, practically always.
I said, this is NOT full disclosure.
He said, how so?
I said, THEY NEVER TOLD ME ABOUT THE STUPID LAW!!!

So, until I can make time in my miniscule day to call and confirm, I am making prolific use of my checkbook. Kinda weird. I have written more checks in the last three weeks than I have since I discovered online banking. Which was about, oh...four years ago? I kinda like the process of writing out the checks with a flourish. I practice my handwriting - which is improving, by the way.

However, I have to go to the Post Office to get more stamps.
Going to the Post Office, the Bank, and stopping to get gas are three activities I consider to be a total waste of my time... which is a whole other topic onto itself.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Unusually Usual...

So, I left work at the human hour of 6:15 this evening.
I am proud of that little feat.

Great dinner tonight.
Brown rice
Spicy String Beans with bacon and tomatoes - didn't use a half pound of bacon that the recipe called for - just three strips. The key was the get the remaining liquid down at the end to a demi-glace... wonderful!
Beef stir-fried with tri-colored peppers, onions and mushrooms.

Eating healthy is wonderful! It's delicious.
Sometimes I worry that I am not eating the right things because I am liking what I am eating.
Lately I've been trying new recipes as well. I love Food and Wine much better than food TV. The recipes are much easier and more accessible than the ones from Food TV network. I also love cooking at home because I love to cook and because I know every ingredient that's in the final product. And it's all healthy. Even the bacon...very lean, drained and dried, well... as healthy as bacon can be... certainly three strips are MODERATE. Sheesh...

I have to confess that tonight I ate a madeline cookie and a little french crepe cookie.
They were NOT that sweet so I really liked them.
Had it with my herbal tea - ginseng peppermint tonight.
But I am not going to stress about those cookies...
I am still eating BROWN rice, after all. Sheesh.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

I am such a dinglehead...

I have been wracking my brain for a chicken recipe.
I kept recalling the ingredients and finally I found the one ingredient I KNEW I used and it turns out that it's not a chicken recipe - it's a PORK recipe! ARG!!!!
There was NEVER a chicken recipe!!!!! ARG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Okay. I have a fall back and I can use the chimney pot - to make a chicken dish...
I have to see - that takes a really long time...

Maybe stir fry - cilantro, mushrooms, peanuts... whatever I find in the drawers....

I am hungry.
I had better just go to bed.

Random Thought: Fruit

After having two clementines and a pint of blueberries,
I have made the amazin discovery that Fruit is neither satisfying nor filling.

Well... I might as well get my dinner together.

I am working late.
too much too do.
All I did was meet with my staff and yell at other people today...
And go to PT.

Sigh...

Stupid Cookie Diet

Jeez. Everyone is emailing and me and commenting and just generally Up. In. Arms. about the stupid cookie diet.

I only thought it was INTERESTING.
Besides, they are in STUPID FLORIDA!
Not anywhere close.

And those cookies are HUGE!
I mean... ONE little cookie is BIG for me.
I cannot imagine having to eat SIX GIGANTICAL ones.
Imagine the sweetness factor?
I would be walking around all puckered up from the cloying sweet flavor.

Well... now I think I have to start working on my fitness schedule.
Damn damn damn... I wasn't planning on having to lift a finger until April.

PT

So, I just got back from PT.
Kennedy Brothers now has a new cult member.
They service a LOT of runners in the area.
Anyway...

I am going back on Wednesdays and Fridays.

I have clearance to bike, swim and do light lifting.
BUT...No heavy weights on my shoulders which means I can't do any of my major leg exercises like lunges, squats, smith machine, etc etc etc, and I can't run yet.
But I can do almost everything else.

Wait!
That means I have to heave myself off my fat lazy ass...

Damn.

The Cookie Diet

Okay. One more thing before I get to work...

There was this report about the cookie diet where you eat 6 special cookies loaded with fiber and protein and amino acids. You get it from a medical doctor and you lose about 1 pound of FAT every week or so.

Well... I am on a high fiber diet by following Dr. Ann's 10 steps plan.
But I am NOT losing 1 pound of fat a week - I am losing about a 1/2 pound of WEIGHT but who knows how much of that is actually FAT?

The cookie diet is an 800-calorie diet.
You eat the cookies during the day and at dinner you have a preset amount of protein and veggies. And that's all.
I am not sure if I could survive on an 800-calorie diet.
I wonder if you can alter it a little and get it to 1200 or 1400, which is good for me to lose weight. And with my activity level, even THAT is a tad low...

Hmmm...

I must ponder on this a bit more...

If it's Wednesday...

...then it's Weigh-In Day....
I am DOWN .4 pounds. Yahoo!
It's in the right direction and I am averaging about a half pound a week.
Which is FINE!
Only 10.2 to go... I figure it will take me about 6 months to get there at this rate - give or take a plateau here or there...
That is fine as long as I get there... and 6 months is right around the corner.
Imagine what could happen if my ankle heals and I can get out there and do some exercise!

Speaking of Ankles... I am getting my ankle brace this morning.
After the snow last night, I am working a little from home this morning so that the person I am meeting with at 8:30 gets there. She actually OPENS the office and you don't know which town she is coming from.

Speaking of snows - some of the schools are not closing today. They have run out of snow days. So, what is the problem with having the school year run into the summer? I don't get it. Just have the kids go to school and keep it running all year long!

Last night's commute was fine. It really didn't take me that much longer. There wasn't any stop and go traffic. Everyone as driving about 20 mph below the limit, which is going 45 in a 65 zone. Of course no one drives 65 mph - more like 80. In which case they were driving 35 miles below actual drive speed. Anyway... traffic was fine. At one point, I managed to get in front of a bonehead driver in the other lane who was straddling two lanes, screwing up the traffic behind them. After I passed them, it was free and clear, just me and the highway, alone, no one around me, for about two miles. Which proved to me how ONE IDIOT can screw the world up for HUNDREDS of other people... and how cool is was to be driving all alone without a car around on a snowy southeast expressway - one of the BUSINESS and WORST traffic'd roads known to mankind! :oD Further proof that there is something good to be found in all things - no matter how bad...

Okay. Gotta work...

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

I am being assimilated...

I have no completed Presentation Three of Seven.
Tomorrow, I will start on Four of Seven.
I might have another one - which would really make it Four of Eight...
Can't wait to each Seven of Nine... :o)

Anyway... I also have to put together an agenda for the Dallas trip at the end of the month.
At least this time, I am taking people with me.
Never ever go anywhere without people... it will keep business trips much more interesting.
As long as you like who you are traveling with.
Of course.

It is snowing out.
The ride back to Boston from Smithfield oughta be enough time for the wet snow to wash the dirt off my car. The rain this morning loosened the scum and I am hoping high speed travel with wet sludge will clean it even more...

Traffic is gonna be a damn nightmare!

STEP TEN: Controlled Grazing & Water

REQUIREMENT:
3 meals + snacks between (5 times a day)
Set a cut off time for when you stop eating for the day. Be sure it is at least 3 hours before you go to bed.
Good Snacks:
- dill pickles
- canned roasted red peppers
- cut fresh veggies (dip in hummus)
- low-fat yogurt (plain is best or with a little dietetic sweetener) – NO FRUIT yogurt
- Nuts
- Fresh or frozen fruit
- Soy nuts
- Dried peas with wasabe
- Part skim or farmers cheese (cheese sticks, etc)
- Fruit smoothies made with skim milk, low-fat yogurt, or soy milk
- Beef, pork, turkey jerky
- Wasa crackers with cheese, almond, peanut butter, hummus, salsa, guacamole, sardines, or smoked salmon
- Dried apricots (with nuts, cheese or another form of healthy protein)Whole grain tortillas, dipped in hummus, salsa or guacamole

Drink at least 8 glass of water daily in addition to any other liquids you might drink. It helps BURN FAT!

Monday, March 07, 2005

Well, it's done...

I have made the organizational announcement to the rest of the staff.
The official effective date is moved up 3 weeks.
I hate waiting. So damn impatient. Whatever.

I had a series of meetings today that needed to be done...
Some care and feeding, some housekeeping.

I also finished up One of Seven Presentations and sent it on to New Boss.
I will review it with him on Wednesday.
I am now in the middle of Two of Seven Presentations - hope to finish up the draft of the draft tonight before I leave here, which I am hoping will be around 8pm.

I packed dinner.
I hate not eating dinner with Joseph but I desperately need to do this at least one day a week.
So far so good.

STEP NINE: Nuts

We are almost finished.
The last two are pretty easy... I love nuts.

Nutty Guidelines:
Consume nuts and seeds daily – in salads, cooking, etc
Limit intake to 1 ounce a day:
- 18 cashews
- 30 mixed nuts with peanuts
- 24 almonds
- 30 peanuts
- 20 hazelnuts
- 8 brazil nuts
- 10 walnuts
- 18 pecans
- ½ C sunflower seeds
- 45 pistachios
- 150 pine nuts
- 10 macadamias

Working Late

I am working late tonight.
I packed all my meals.
I have to get some work done!

I am so packed to the gills that I don't know how to tackle the pile of work that I have.

I must get out from under this mess!!!

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Omg. Someone kill me now....

So, we went to the a neighborhood fundraiser at the Boston Ballet School tonight.
They have a silent auction.
We bid on the same things we bid on last year.
A basket of coffee and teas from Berkeley Perk.
And a basket of doggie treats and toys from Polka Dog Bakery.

Dingle Doggie is playing with the green monster with the squeeky thing in it.
O.M.G.
Can we BE ANY MORE NOISY???
GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We also walked away with a basket of food from Lionette and a cookbook by Gordon Hammersley, who autographed it. Hammersley's is two blocks from us, and where Joseph took me for my first birthday together as a sort of couple... we were poor (relatively speaking since we were in the throes of moving from wherever to Boston) and living viciariously. It was a time of choatic transition but wonderful at the same time. And with utter belief in the future, we looked forward to a "normal" life together. We started our honeymoon and it hasn't stopped yet.

Yup. And if Joseph doesn't step throwing that damn squeeky toy around with the dog, I am gonna poke my eyes out.

PIP

Gotta love it.
We are watching arch enemies play on both screens.
Tiger and Phil
and...
UNC and the Beetlebugs.

:o)

Oh and another thing...
I hate Vijay Singh.
Not as much as the Beetlebugs but he's right up there with Liver, Sand, Lamb, Wind, and Water.
Not to mention that he is a pompous, bloated, chauvanist pig.

Oh my god!!!

MJ blogged!!!

Beetlebugs

aka Beelzabubs...
aka Devils...
aka Damn Dook.

UNC is playing them.
I can't believe I am watching them play.
I used to never watch because I hate Dook that much.
But Joe turns the sttion and there it is...
First Syracuse, then UNC.
We. Must. Watch.
That is what happens when you marry a sports fanatic.
But, I digress...

There is nothing I hate more than Dook.
Not even Wind.
Not even Water touching my skin.
Not even sand at the beach -tactile hell.
I would rather eat LIVER than cheer for Dook.
I would rather eat LAMB (which I am allergic to) than cheer for Dook.

GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I REALLY HATE DOOK!!!!!!!!

STEP EIGHT: Exercise

Exercise
‘nuff said.
Exercise 6 times a week.
Incorporate weights and aerobic for maximum effect.
I have made the following guidelines based on skimming the charts from Bob Greene's book.

Beginners:
- lift 2-3 times per week
- run/walk/bike 6 days a week
- 5 days: first week, run etc for 15 minutes, then increase by 2 minutes each following week (15, 17, 19, etc)
- 1 day: first week, run etc for 30 minutes (double), then double the 5-day times each following week (30, 34, 38, etc)

Intermediate:
- lift every other day
- same as above for aerobic but start with 30 minutes

Advanced:
- lift every other day
- same as above for aerobic but start with 45 minutes

Do stretch and abs daily

Do the above for 12 weeks.
After that it should be a habit.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Debbie said:
"the technical world has changed so much that nowadays, to be successful,
tech people have to be able to wear many hats -- be a kind of a hybrid. you can
no longer merely hide in your hole and code for days at a time. many old-time
programmers are so threatened by this. they know they're technically brilliant
and probably are far better programmers than the people who are passing them in the ranks, however they don't have the other skills needed, nor the desire to
acquire them. These are the people who are being replaced the most by
outsourcing."

I have to agree. They don't get it. I think that this person does actually get it but is having a hard time accepting it. It's sort of a hard, "it's not fair" kinda attitude. Well, if everyone had that idea, then I guess we never would have had progress... the candle makers would all be whining, "it's not fair" because electricity was discovered.

Anyway...

Random Thought: Trader Joe's

Let me make it perfectly clear.

I LOVE TRADER JOE'S!!!!

Trader Joe's Trader Joe's Trader Joe's
Trader Joe's Trader Joe's Trader Joe's

I don't think I would ever want to live in a place where I didn't have access to Trader Joe's.
Easy access is best.
However, I would drive up to an HOUR to get to one.

Hmmm.... okay... maybe not an hour.
Maybe 30 minutes.

BUT, if it WERE an hour away, I would go once a month, stock up and make an event out of it...
Hmmm... although, I love their fresh foods - so much cheaper than the regular ole grocery store - and I couldn't stock up on those...

Okay. So, I could NEVER live anywhere that isn't less than a 31 minute drive to a Trader Joe's.

STEP SEVEN: Have Your Fats and Eat Them, Too

Personal Note. I've been doing pretty well on the eating plan. Like I said, I don't have a lot things to change so it's been pretty easy just tightening things up a bit.
I do notice when I do not have enough fiber.
After having a lot of fiber, I miss it when I don't.
Very strange.
The other good thing is that I am into week three of this (9 more weeks to go until miracles happen,I suppose), so I can now have cantaloupe in addition to berries. I love cantaloupe. I went to the store and they had nice big fat ones on sale 10 for $10 so I ended up getting five of them. :o)

The Guidelines
Wrong fats:

  • saturated fats (found in animal products – red meat, poultry skin, whole dairy, tropical oils – coconut and palm oil): can lead to storing more fat around the middle – internal organs and abdomen (apple shaped people)
  • trans fat: shortening, hydrogenated oil, margarines, butters, anything soft and hardened in natural state bad fats can be found in breakfast cereals, cakes, cookies, crackers, chips, popcorn, salad dressing, margarine, fast foods, French fries, candy

Right Fats:

  • monounsaturated: plant-derived fats that remain in liquid form at room temperature (olive oil, canola oil, grapeseed oil, sesame oil)
  • Avocados, fats in seeds and nuts
  • Polyunsaturated: similar to monounsaturated, also remain liquid at room temperature, plant and marine based (corn oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil)
  • Omega 3

Strictly avoid:

  • trans fats or buy trans-fat free margarine
  • Do not eat fried fast foods
  • No shortening in the ingredients
  • Minimize intake of saturated fats

Consume monosaturated fats as primary form of dietary fats:

  • extra virgin olive oil
  • Canola oil
  • Nut/seed oils (walnut, sesame)
  • Nuts/seeds
  • Avocados
  • Include Omega 3 in diet DAILY:
    oily fish
    Walnuts
    Canola oil
    Omega-3 fortified eggs
    Soybeans
    Flax seed or wheat germ
    Small dark, leafy greens (Spinach & Purslane)

Random Thought: Leprosy

I am SOOOO glad I don't have leprosy.

I am even gladder that the chances of my getting it as good as Hell freezing over.
And I am not referring to Hell, Michigan.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Change is a constant

I am reorging my group at work.
I have to do it.
We went through two years of growth and new direction and in order to sustain this, I have to do it.
The new organization is about a month in the making.
I've got HR on board and my New Boss said, "do it."
It will be effective April 1.
I rolled it out to the people who are affected today.
Everyone is good with it.
Except for one...

In her eyes,
I am a lousy manager who has ignored her people,
it's a travesty that certain people have not been promoted and she is NOT talking about herself (right),
I will be lucky if I have anyone left in the group by the end of the year (she predicted this at the beginning of LAST year),
technical people are not valued any more,
people who sell themselves and become administrative are fast tracked and are promoted,
she sees the writing on the wall...
the grass is greener on the other side,
everyone sucks,
everything sucks,
blah blah blah... broken record.

I have known this person for 20 years.
Yes. Twenty years.
It's the same old litany any time there is a change of any kind.
But in the end, she has always pulled through.

The bottom line is that the bar has been raised.
Either you are doing what you are doing and you won't be promoted,
or you can come out of your comfort zone, embrace change, take a chance and find opportunities that will put you in a position to be promoted.
Promotions are no longer a spoon fed "given" as they used to be.
Now you have to work tohave leadership presence.
This is a long and complicated topic filled with deep convolutions that we good go one about all day long. (Don't worry, we won't do that here.)

The sad part is that I think she is capable of so much more. The people relationship aspect is a problem for an introvert like her. But if she can't handle networking, can she be capable of more? Not if the two go hand in hand... sometimes excellence cannot be attained until PAIRS of abilities work together... each as they stand alone can bring about only fraction of the results that can be produced as when they stand together.. this is about leadership excellence.

The funny part is that this meeting was at 10:00am.
At 11:15, I presented her with an award with a $300 bonus for the work she did for an initiative that took her a YEAR to warm up to, which did not happen without a lot of complaining, and which required her to come out of her comfort zone. I gave a big speech and I smiled when I gave it to her. She smiled back. And we talked with our eyes. She knows that this took a while to put together...certainly longer than it took her to complain to me this morning.

You can't complain about not being promoted if you are not willing to step outside of yourself.

Another idea is that perhaps she has attained her true potential in this company. Some would think that was sad. But I say, how wonderful that some one actually attained the limits of their potential. That is something to be celebrated. The problem is that no one has bothered to think about what happens afterwards because so few people get there.

So, now what?

What a day...

Just for the record...
I have spent the WHOLE DAY IN BACK TO BACK MEETINGS.

Just so we're clear.

...now I have to get some real work done...

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Random Thought: Stupid Cat

Henry Cat is dipping her left paw into the water dish and licking the water off.
OMG. SO DAMN CUTE!!!

She's also a very strange cat.
She likes to sit on newspaper,
can stay inert for hours and hours on end,
takes over the doggie bed every change she gets and the doggie bed is HUGE and she looks so tiny on it,
likes to be held upside down as if she was lying upside down (as opposed to head down upside down),
paws at you to make you pet her and pay attention to her,
licks the lotion off your hand,
licks water off your foot after you get out of the shower,
drinks out the bathroom sink faucet,
gets into the tub after you get out of the shower...

She is just so bizarre...

I am really missing working out.
Running, lifting.
And just when I was getting started on the biking and swimming.
The fact that I even managed to get within 10 feet is a miracle but then I actually got INTO the water and SWAM!
GASP!

And now, when my ankle gets better, I will have to start over again.
From ZERO mileage in running.
From ZERO mileage in biking.
From ZERO pounds in lifting.
And ZERO laps in the pool.
Zero zero zero!!!

It's a bit distressing and disheartening to think that all that time I spent building up these habits have been broken down in a mere two weeks. And now that it's been about 3 months,if you don’t count the three weeks in the middle, I KNOW that it will be as if I've been sedentary all my life.

I keep reading these exercise blogs from runnners and I am starting to get wistful.
I used to dive into magazines for running and lifting and biking and I can't even pick them up any more. The interest just isn't there.

The only things I don't mind reading are Food and Wine and the Boston Magazine - for the recipes and brunch notes. Not that I go to brunch or anything but I like reading about it.

I really miss blogging about my daily runs and workouts.
I won't ever complain again when I get started back up.
Unless it's about the Wind. I hate Wind and I will ALWAYS complain about that.

Sigh...

Why me???

Okay. So I just got off the phone with an SVP in one of the Business Units.
She is the first woman to break the glass ceiling here and make it to that level.
Since then, we have had about three more women.
Of course, the fact that the person who will be inheriting this firm is a female means the trend should continue.

And this is also the person I went head to head with 13+ years ago when I first started - she wouldn't even look at me.
If I was on fire she wouldn't have SPIT on me.
She only talked to MEN.
It was VERY noticeable.
Then we sat across the table in a meeting and I ROYALLY PISSED HER OFF.
Because I was doing things RIGHT as opposed to the POLITICALLY CORRECT.
I mean, my integrity was at stake!
What was I supposed to do??
And then we didn't talk for YEARS.
Then projects made us cross paths and in the past couple of years I've had more dealing directly with her and we've run into each other at events, etc.

And now I am ON HER MIND??? GAK!!!!
Anyway... she wants a presentation to the president of her Business Unit.
She is setting up a series 1 hour lectures on techology.
One of them is the Database arena.
So she thought of ME.
Huh? ME???
I am NOT technical - lost that the second I started in management. WAH!!!

It's basically to give him an understanding of what is happening in that arena in general.
Huh? I have NO IDEA!
And then how that direction applies to our company overall direction, at a high level.
Huh? HOW WOULD I KNOW!!!

She wants a 20 minute presentation with room for dialogue.
Mind you, this is a ONE HOUR meeting so that leaves 40 MINUTES for DIALOG on a topic that I HAVE BEEN AWAY FROM.

Did I mention that I am no longer TECHNICAL??
She also advised that I should think of him as a Business Partner and this is to tell him what he should be thinking about for the future in technology for his Business Unit.
I am going to get back to her with some dates - very flexible so I am thinking fo April…I will do a draft and run it by her - told her I would do that to make sure she thinks it's appropriate.

She did mention that this is a good opportunity for me. Which I do agree with.
Suddenly she's interested in my career??
Or maybe her memory is LOOOONG and it's an opportunity to get back at me for transgressions from 13+ years ago...
Actually, she has never seen me present ANYTHING before... hmm...

I will get the architects on my staff together to go over this…
Maybe a high level from Gartner?

Anything I'm missing? Thoughts? Anything? ANYONE?
WAHHHH!!!

STEP SIX: Eat a high quality protein at each meal

Every Meal” means Every Meal
Try to replace red meat with beans (eg lentils)

Superstar Vegetable Proteins:

  • Beans/legumes
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Soy products

Omega 3 eggs – written on the label
Oily fish (try to have 3x / week)
Skinless poultry
Shellfish
Wild game

Red meat (limit to 2 or less servings a week)

Personal Note: I went and bought a bunchafish. I am trying to alternate redmeat with fish and chicken - every other day to start with... fish, chicken, red meat, fish, chicken, redmeat... etc... Just started this week so time will tell.

I think it's working...

Okay. I weigh myself on either Wed or Thu depending on when I remember.

Since Feb 21, I've lost 1.4 pounds.
And on Feb 22, I went UP by .2 pounds but I am sure that's one of those "blips."
Almost a pound and a half in two weeks since I started Dr. Ann's 10-steps.

Not bad. Especially if you consider I've done NOTHING but sit on my fat ass because of my stupid ankle!
I cannot wait to be able to do something. ANYTHING!
I am still waiting for my brace to come in.
Hopefuly today or tomorrow!
In a couple of weeks I'll try hopping on the bike.
Dr Ann's 10-steps is pretty simple and I am pleased with how easy it is to incorporate into my lifestyle.
Anyway…

Last night I made a shrimp stirfry -
garlic in olive oil
add shrimp
add a little chicken broth to keep from sticking
cook about 5 minutes
stir in a mixture of a spoonful of cornstarch with a two spoonfuls of chicken broth
Add more chicken broth to get a good thickened consistency
Stir in a buncha chopped fresh cilantro

We had it with brown rice and steamed asaparagus with a glass of white wine, Raffaele 2003 Viognier.
It was delicious!

I need to work on my two servings of fruit a day now that I have the Avoid White Carbs and Have the RIGHT Carbs down pretty well.

Happy Happy Happy!

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

And the Weak Shall Inherit the Earth

What makes something inspiring?
What is their quality that tug at our hearts?
That overturns the boulders in our souls to expose our creepy crawly vulnerabilities?
What shoots straight to our fears and moves us to act in spite of them?
And what is it that brings us to tears when we recognize that perhaps the weakest among us are the strongest?

Tonight we watched Running on the Sun...about the Badwater 135, run in Death Valley in such intense conditions that you must submit a resume of your running before you are accepted as a competitor. You might have to be a runner to understand and enjoy it, but at the basest level, it would bring out the voyeur in ordinary people - those who peek through their fingers - to view the silver dollar sized blisters, the vomiting, the near heat stroke... and the pain of those who accept saline - to live to be disqualified...

Watching this wasn't bad until Joseph started taking count of all the things that we would supposedly need. Hellooo!!!! WE??? We will NEED THIS STUFF?? And WHY would we NEED this stuff????? Ahem. I told him in no uncertain terms that I love him ALIVE and I loved his cute little toes just the way they were and they didn't need blisters the size of silver dollars or ten missing toenails... Sheesh.

Anyway, these are seemingly ordinary people with extraordinary wills.
One even took out a loan so that she could train and race.

Then there was Chris Moon.
Inspiration.

Deja Vu all over again...

So, I had my weekly 1:1 with my New Boss.
Tried to find out the EVP's opinions of our group in India.
He just got back from a trip.
And he met with my group while he was there...

Well... we did such a good job that he didn't dwell alot on our group.
Damn!
But now he does have a better idea of all the work we do, which may or may not be a good thing...

And another surprise... I am supposedly well-known over there.
And what the hell does that mean???
I was mentioned as a "high potential expat."
ARG!!!! Not that again!!!
The good thing is that the EVP knows all the strategies I have going on right now right here at home. And quite a few of them go straight to his heart. They may just end up saving me from going over... As it is, I am definitely going over there this fall....

I wonder if Joseph wants to go over with me.... Hmm....

And a good morning to you, too, buddy...

As I am lazing in bed with a cup of coffee that my Hunny Bunny brought me, my Blackberry shakes me out of my doldrums....

One of my senior technical guys is having a pissing match with a development manager from India. About the qualifications of one of the developers that he is working with, questioning his capabilities, while the manager is defending him.

Of course the fact is, the India staff often tends to overinflate their abilities.
They can never say "no."
Overcommittment and under-delivery is the norm.
All because we expect a "yes" to mean "yes" while to them, a "yes" means "we'll see" or "maybe" or "just acknolwedging your words..."

Working with the Indian culture can be daunting.
We've had a huge amount of success by hiring those who worked in the US or for US-based companies.
We have also set it up so that they report directly to us.
We also have a bunchaAsians on staff here and it doesn't hurt that I am Korean...
And it ALSO doesn't hurt that I get in front of the group every month and remind them of the communication responsibilities, especially that a "yes" must mean "yes."

Or everyone is fired. :o))

In light of all that... I bounded out of bed and here I sit... getting ready to start the day.
NOTHING can get me out of bed faster than one of my most trusted senior technical guys having a pissing match with a development manager in India.

That, and fire.

Oh... And my senior technical guy is right, of course.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Pockmarked Wife's Tofu

Tonight I tried a new recipe: Ma-Po Tofu.
Roughly translated, it means Pockmarked (Po) Wife (Ma) Tofu, named for the woman who supposedly invented the dish.
It's a chinese dish and I'd always used a mix or a can but then I went online to Food TV and found it by doing a search on "Tofu."

Anyway... I had most of the ingredients except for the Sansho powder - well... I have NEVER heard of that one before... so I cheated and used a bonito powder and I also added a little bit of sugar to take the salty edge off and I also chopped my own pork meat really fine because I didn't have ground pork on hand...lots o' chopping involved in this one...

Well... it was DELICIOUS!!!
OMG! I could barely stop eating.
Joseph said we had to stop eating.
WAH!!!

We had it with little brussel sprouts and brown rice accompanied by a glass of Seghesio...

I had a thought to invite our upstairs tenant neighbor but she went out.
I think she did, anyway...

We have some left over along with the Baked Haddock in Capers, Sherry Vinegar, and Olives I made last night. I overcooked the fish a bit but Joseph said the recipes usually add time because most people do not preheat their ovens. Oh. :o
BTW, there is an awesome issue of Food and Wine I am saving... it's chock full of good recipes! I usually tear out pages and save them but this time, the whole thing is gonna be in my kitchen like a cookbook!

I LOVE TO COOK!
I LOVE MY KITCHEN!


And I love my Hunny Bunny.
He is doing all of the dishes.
:o)

STEP FIVE: Load up on Veggies (and have a little fruit, too)

Speaking of cows...

I am doing better with this one... it's hard.
One can only eat so much!
The good news is that all the stuff below are all the stuff I like to eat!

General Guidelines

  • ½ C raw or cooked non-starchy vegetables (5 or more servings a day) or 1 C uncooked leafy vegetables (Fresh or frozen)

Superstar Vegetables:
  • Cruciferous class (broccoli, cabbage, kale, collards, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, watercress
  • Carrots
  • Garlic
  • Onions & leeks
  • Tomatoes (including tomato products)
  • Bell peppers – red, yellow, orange
  • Asparagus
  • Spinach and darker lettuces

Avoid starchy veggies:

  • potatoes (white), parsnips, corn, rutabagas
  • Canned veggies (except tomatoes & tomato products, roasted red peppers, artichokes)

Avoid all fruits except for berries in the first week – limit to 1 cup
After first week, consume 2 cups of fruit a day
Fresh or frozen (no added sugar)

Superstar Fruits:

  • Berries & Cherries
  • Pomegranates
  • Peaches & Plums
  • Any whole citrus
  • Cantaloupe
  • Red Grapes
  • Apples & Pears
  • Apricots – dried or fresh

Avoid sugary fruits:

  • Tropical fruits (except cantaloupe): banana, pineapple, mangos, papayas
  • Dried fruits (except apricots)
  • Canned fruits

Oh, And ANOTHER Thing...

I have to go back to the doctor in six weeks.
That means I cannot do any kinda running for at least that much time.
It took me FOUR weeks before I felt well enough to even THINK about getting on the bike as it was...
Do you THINK I am gonna be a BIG FAT COW THE SIZE OF A HOUSE BY THE END OF ALL THIS???

GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

:o[

Dumb Dingle Doggie...

So, she's out in the stupid snow.
She hears someone upstairs.
She runs in the house dripping with snow and runs UPSTAIRS without stopping.

Now I have these damn snow drop size puddles in the house.
I am NOT a happy person right now…

Hmm…. I wonder how long it takes for snow drop size puddles to dry up….

Stupid Stupid Ankle....

So I went to the doctor.
They had a cancellation due to the snow storm so they could move it up by a day.

It was an 11:15am appointment.
I finally got home at 2:45pm. ARG!!!!!
It would have been fine except that I needed a brace, and the Brace Shop at the hospital is NOT a part of the hospital - they are just doing business there... so the HOSPITAL is covered by insurance but the Brace Shop is NOT.

So I had to drive to Newton to a different place to get the brace. And THEY didn't have it in stock, so they had to order it, which means I won't have it for a few days.
In the meantime, I can't leave the house because of the bad footing because of the damn snow! ARG!!!
Being home by choice is one thing but house arrest is entirely different!

Anyway... nothing is torn, and there are no bone fragments. Thankgoodness.
But I am being sent to physical therapy because the proreceptive muscle fibers need to be re-trained because the nerves that activate these have been damaged.

GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!