Friday, April 18, 2014

Surfing through my Prevent Cancer files for information for a friend, I came across my
old blog posts from 2009 when staff had challenged me to get into “better” shape and run the
5K that September.  It was a lot of fun I think because I had to chronicle my progress in
building up my stamina for running, (which I hadn’t done in years), and give up my bad 
eating habits.

Disclaimer here; I’ve always exercised and been a walker, so that part of the challenge was
no big deal. (Or so I thought.)  But since I really liked my cokes and occasional fast food.  
That part of the challenge was MUCH harder.

I got such a kick out of reading the posts, thought I’d share and excerpt from “Being Put to 
the Test.”

“Just when I was making real progress, my knees flared up.  I’ve done really well with the run/walk program, even running one night after work last week because my schedule was so packed I knew I wouldn’t make it in the gym a couple of mornings.   Now that’s dedication!  

Okay, it may not seem like much to you, but to me it is.  I am not a night person, especially when it comes to exercise.   And exercising at night comes with a curse for me – I’m always starving afterwards – and this time was no exception.  Left the gym starving and the first thing I thought about was stopping for food on my way home.  Not the kind of stopping where you park and walk into a grocery store to get good healthy food, but stopping for a burger.  During my five-minute ride home I spent the time productively - rationalizing that it would be okay to get the burger because I wouldn’t get fries and a coke.  Just a burger. 

Even though I heard the “good voice” in my head saying NO, go home and eat healthy.  The “bad voice” was louder, and hungrier.  I pulled into Wendy’s with my mouth watering for a burger only to find the drive-thru under construction and closed.  Did that deter me, no.  I found an open parking space a marched right in for my burger – now with everything because I had further rationalized toppings could be like a little salad with my burger.   Reach the counter sweaty from my workout and ordered my burger with everything when everything came to a screeching halt.  The clerk rang asked for $3.75….for just a burger!  

I reminded the guy I was only getting a burger. No fries, no coke, just a burger.  He repeated: “$3.75.”   In a burger craze by now I asked; “are you serious, $3.75 for just a burger?  For $2 more I can have fries and a coke.”   He smiled and said; “Yes, $3.75.  Or do you want the combo with the fries and coke?”   Well heck yes I want the fries and coke, that‘s not the point!  I looked at him and politely said; “never mind,” and walked out.   No burger with everything, just the “good voice” in my head calling me an idiot.    

Will power hasn’t got a thing on my cheapness!”

So how’d I do in the 5k?  I didn’t.  Ended up stress fracturing both knees pushing too hard, too fast, I didn’t compete.   But I lost 10 pounds, had broken my coca cola habit, and stayed away from fast food….for awhile.


Sunday, April 6, 2014

Oh…..Nay Nay

Humor, you’ve heard of it:  Humor ~ is the tendency of particular cognitive experiences to provoke laughter and provide amusement.”

Tonight I heard the sad news that comedian John Pinette had been found dead in his hotel room.  While we’ve all wondered how long his poor body could take the ups and downs of his weight, you always hoped in the end, all would be okay. 

Pinette used his the struggles with weight in his humor.  We all laughed right along with him as he joked about starving, and trying to juice a ham. 

Ironically, I thought of Pinette last night while I was watching an old Johnny Carson show with George Burns.  Not because Pinette reminds me of Burns, but because I was trying to think of comedians who could stand up to some of the greats.  Pinette was one of those I thought of.

Greats such as;
George Burns: “Everything that goes up must come down. But there comes a time when not everything that's down can come up.”

Don Rickles: I think if I took therapy, the doctor would quit. He'd just pick up the couch and walk out of the room.”
Bob Hope: I grew up with six brothers. That's how I learned to dance - waiting for the bathroom.”

Jack Benny:  “My wife Mary and I have been married for forty-seven years and not once have we had an argument serious enough to consider divorce; murder, yes, but divorce, never.”

Rodney Dangerfield: “I had plenty of pimples as a kid. One day I fell asleep in the library. When I woke up, a blind man was reading my face.”

Comedians who didn’t use, or need to use, vulgar language to get a laugh.  Instead, they used self-deprecating humor, and story telling that everyone could relate to. 

I would have loved to see Pinette sit with these greats and share one-liners. 

RIP John Pinette.

Sunday, March 16, 2014


Lately I’ve been questioning; “what does community mean?”

Whenever I’ve thought about community, I associated it with where I lived.  But lately as I think about the next phase of my life, I’ve been thinking about what it really means, and what I want in a community.  I’ve come to realize community is more than just home – it’s work, volunteer, family & friends, and so on.  We all have many communities in which we live, and build our lives.

We each look for something different.  I know the most important thing for me in a community is that it’s filled with warm, caring people.  People who will lend a hand to those in need or less fortunate, or just to be of help.   Will smile, wave and spend time getting to know those around them.  Who they are, what they feel, and what’s important to them.

I want a community where people embrace someone, not for what they have, or can give, but for who they are.  Respect someone for what they bring to the world, to work, to life.  Listen to what they say, and not how they say it.  Reward effort, whether great or small.  Encourage change.  Embrace individuality.  Empower growth.

A community I can be proud to hang my coat, lay my head to rest, and live my life.  Right now my community does not contain these wants/needs.  It’s time for a change.

  Without a sense of caring, there can be no sense of community.”
                                                            Anthony J. deAngelo

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Another Year Older

Yesterday, I celebrated my 56th birthday.  56.

I’m not the type of person who has ever worried about the number.  Not thrilled about it, but it is what it is.  Except when I turned 17.  For some reason, that was a hard change.  Guess because I couldn’t wait to be16, than all of a sudden, I was 17.  I remember looking in the mirror and thinking; “dang, it’s all down hill from here.”   How sad was I.

On my 40th birthday I spent the day answering questions like; “how are you doing with the big 4-0? “  Like it was the end of my life.  Folks thought I should be sad or upset.  Why I’m not sure.  Not like you turn 40, life is over so you put on your PJ’s and never leave the house again.

My 50th was no walk in the park either, at least for others. Heard all of the “over the hill” jokes, and more “are you ok?” then I care to mention.  Again, no big deal.

During a conversation yesterday, I remembered when I was that 17 year-old teenager looking in the mirror and I heard my parents in the bedroom above me having sex.  Ewwww.  I was so grossed out by those two old fogies having sex I momentarily stopped looking at myself.  They were 56.

Yes, there’s a big downsize to getting older.  Menopause. Your body changes – and not in a good way – no matter how much you up your workouts.  You begin to notice little aches and pains that weren’t there before.   When you get together with friends you start comparing medical records and the meds you’re taking, rather than current events and where you want to go on vacation.  And did I mention Menopause?

Of course on the up side, you don’t have to shave your legs and underarms as often because hair growth really slows down, or stops completely.  Hurray!  

And I finally get the joke about the old woman who goes to the hospital with a self-inflicted gunshot wound in her left knee.  The doctor asks what she was thinking, and she responds that she was trying to commit suicide by shooting herself in the heart.  The doctors says, "your heart is under your left breast.”  To which she responds; “I know”.

Think about it……

Thursday, October 31, 2013


Sometimes I’m truly amazed how people who call themselves “good neighbors” can be completely lacking in compassion for their neighbors.

I live in a community with a Homeowners Association – my first experience with an HOA.  Two years ago I joined the board believing it was important to be an active member of our community – and it is.  I even agreed to serve as President of the HOA last year.  Why I don’t know.  I can tell you wine was involved.

But being part of the “community” you learn things about your neighbors you’d rather not know.  Like how quick some can be to judge their neighbors.  And worse yet, want to knock a neighbor down whose already struggling. 

Probably like most HOA communities, we have a couple of homeowners that occasionally fall behind on their dues.  They always catch up, but it may take them several months.   Instead of understanding our neighbors are having a difficult time, a couple “good neighbors” want to threaten them with slapping a lien on their home as soon as they miss two payments. 

Now we’re not talking big money here.  Not even close.

So when the suggestion was made to me again today to change our notification practice, I pushed back with let’s show some compassion for the situation and was met with; “this isn’t Mayberry, it’s the real world.”  

Mayberry?  Really?

When did it become wrong to care about those struggling?  What ever happen to “help thy neighbor?’  I’m pretty sure by helping, it doesn’t mean push them the rest of the way over the cliff.

Mayberry?  A little Mayberry might be nice.  Open the door for Otis to pass out in the jail cell.  Have a piece of pie with Aunt Bea.  Or sit outside Floyds and shoot the breeze.  And oh yeah, give a shit about your neighbor.