Attack of the exercise buddies, or: How I ended up running in the rain

Dvstransomsnow

Dvstransomsnow (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hey, blog people!  I missed you!  I had a computer-intensive project that killed my eyes for a while.  The perils of being a little blind girl.  But I’m back, sort of, with yet more adventures to share with you.  Let us begin:

When I got up this morning, I didn’t intend to go running at any point during the day.  Yes, yes, I know I told my doctor I would, but I’ve been really busy, and then I got food poisoning, and then I was really tired, and then I had a date (+60 points, by the way), and then I just didn’t feel like it.

But a couple of colleagues of mine run after work, and today my office mate convinced me to go with them.  I’m still not sure how it happened; one minute I was downing my third mug of Red Bull, the next minute I’d agreed to throw on my ratty exercise clothes that I’ve had since I was in school and go run laps.

I lost count of the number of excuses I found not to go.  It’s raining; it’s been a long day; I couldn’t possibly leave before this person calls me back; I can’t see the track without my glasses; I think it might kill me.  I’m amazed my colleagues didn’t brain me before we ever got out of the office, but they didn’t, and I ended up at a nearby track in the rain, blind as a bat and ready to run.  Well, if not exactly ready, at least too stubborn to back out.

I didn’t run the whole way.  I did at least keep going the entire time, even though I walked the majority of the way.  I ran sporadically, and I found time to regret not having planned this a little better as I realized that, in the decade since I last exercised regularly, the elastic on my track pants has–shall we say, relaxed a little?  Or a lot?  Seriously, the minute I’d break into a jog, my pants would start slipping down my hips.  I kept having to grab them and yank them back up.  Trot, grab, pull, repeat.  For a mile and a half.

I made terrible time, but at least I didn’t end up performing an unintentional striptease.  That, combined with a wet t-shirt from the rain, would have turned my pathetic attempt at exercise into a totally different experience!  I think I’ll go again the next time my colleagues go.  Next time, however, I’m wearing spandex.  And maybe something with a drawstring.  Do you think it would be going too far to run in suspenders?

My doctor wishes I wouldn’t post this

La Maldicion de la Bestia

La Maldicion de la Bestia (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

During movie night a while ago, a new friend was invited to join our sacred circle.  Movie night for us involves finding the most cliched, predictable movies available and watching them while yelling insults, throwing things at the screen, drinking boxed wine, and eating horrifically unhealthy snacks.  We don’t invite just anyone to join us while we do this.  We make sure they have really good aim first.  Then we make them buy the wine.

So we’re getting ready for movie night.  We picked a werewolf movie, one of those where the werewolf is the love interest and there’s some sort of vague but agonizing destiny the lovers must overcome.  We give bonus points to the movies if they contain gratuitous violence, so we had high hopes for this one.  We like to take bets on how the movie is going to end before it even starts; winner picks the next movie.  But the really important part about movie night is the snacks.

We’d been having movie night pretty regularly for a while, so we were operating at pro level.  New Girl sat on the couch while the rest of us got the snacks ready.  The key to enjoying movie night properly is to start out with decent wine.  Then, when the spices have deadened your taste buds and the alcohol starts making its way into your system, switch to boxed wine.  At that point, you won’t be able to tell the difference, and it’s much cheaper.  Obviously, though, you have to choose spicy snacks to make this work properly.  So my friends and I are taking out our supplies and putting together our snacks, all talking with each other and not really paying attention because we’ve done this so often.  It went a little something like this:

Little Blind Girl:  (Pulls out Nacho Cheesier Doritos bags) I predict that Werewolf Girl will have some sort of clan-approved Werewolf Mate that she’ll have to kill in order to be with Human Hottie.

Friend 1:  (Heats up Texas Chili, Extra Hot, adding picante sauce) No, Werewolf Girl will be trying to deny her nature to be with Sanctimonious Loverboy, then she’ll go all wolfy and embrace her true destiny and kill the love interest.

Friend 2:  (Adds Taco Seasoning to Texas Chili, Extra Hot; stirs) Yeah, and then she’ll be all consumed with remorse and fight her Wolf King brother, who’s been egging her on.  She kills him and lopes off into the distance to be alone with her broken heart.

Friend 3:  (Heats up storebought Nacho Dip, stirs in chunks of cheddar) No, she’ll bite Human Hottie and turn him into a werewolf.  Then he goes all feral and kills her best friend, and then she has to kill him.  Then she lopes off into the distance to be alone with her broken heart.

LBG:  (adds chili-taco mix to Doritos bags, shakes enthusiastically, pours into large bowl) No, you’ve got to have the love triangle.  Werewolf Mate tries to kill Human Hottie to try to get with Wolf Girl, then she kills Werewolf Mate in front of Human Hottie, who gets all traumatized and can’t look at her.  Then she lopes off into the distance to be alone with her broken heart.

Friend 1:  (pours cheese mixture over Chili Taco Doritos mix in bowl) Then Human Hottie finds her and convinces her that she can overcome her wolfy instincts and they can be together, and then they have a really awkwardly posed kiss and live happily ever after.

Friend 2:  (dumps 2 tubs of sour cream over Cheese Chili Taco Dorito mix)  You’re such a hopeless romantic!  No.  They have a really awkwardly posed kiss and then, as the screen fades to black, you hear a bunch of wolves starting to howl all around them.

Friend 3: (empties enormous tub of extra-spicy salsa over hot mess in bowl) No, no, no!  After Wolf Girl lopes off into the distance to be alone with her broken heart, Human Hottie tries to follow her, despite being grievously wounded from his fight with Werewolf Mate.  Just as he catches a glimpse of her and she looks at him, the moon comes out from behind the clouds and they realize they’re surrounded by the rest of the wolf clan.  Cut to credits.

Friend 4:  (scatters whole hot peppers throughout bowl, mixes up the hot mess, and reaches for the freaky hot green sauce)  You know, maybe we should ask New Girl if she wants freaky hot green sauce on her Chili Taco Dorito Nachos.  It might not be everyone’s cup of tea.

(We all look over at New Girl, who is staring in bewildered, uncomprehending horror at the Gigantic Bowl of Hot Mess on the kitchen table)

New Girl:  Um, no, that’s okay, I think I’m just going to eat some fruit.

(Bewildered, uncomprehending horror from group of friends, which we cleverly cover with a change of topic)

LBG:  So, New Girl, how do you think the movie will end?

New Girl:  I think Wolf Girl and Human Hottie will have a movie night, eat Chili Taco Dorito Nachos, and immediately have fatal heart attacks.

(Pause)

LBG:  I don’t remember seeing that in any of the promos.

Friend 1:  Isn’t there a story where the heroine chokes on an apple?

Friend 2:  That’s Snow White.  No werewolves.

Friend 1:  My point still stands.

Friend 3:  What point would that be?

Friend 1:  Never trust fruit.  That stuff will kill you.

Turns out, movie night isn’t for everyone.  But, you know, that just means more Chili Taco Dorito Nachos for the rest of us.  I don’t remember how the movie ended or who won that particular round, which is usually the sign of a successful movie night.  New Girl got over her horror and tried the nachos.  I think I even had a slice of apple.  But you don’t want to go overboard with that kind of thing.  Aren’t apples what got us kicked out of the Garden of Eden in the first place?

Wait…what??? (Obligatory post-Freshly Pressed blog entry)

Bambi (character)

Bambi (character) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There I was, peacefully putting away my groceries (all healthy, worse luck.  I think my doctor reads my blog) and chatting with my mother, who was in town for a visit.  She went off to do something else, and I sat down to check in on my blog.  I pressed the stats button…

I recently got a new pair of glasses.  I thought maybe they had malfunctioned.  I’d had how many page views?  Suspicious, I took off my glasses, rubbed them, put them back on…yep, same number.  I checked out the Freshly Pressed section of WordPress and, sure enough, there I was!  With a blog post that I’d put about five minutes worth of thought into and basically consisted of me blowing off steam about my new diet and exercise plan!

Though, come to think of it, that’s probably a pretty universally interesting topic–not diet and exercise, which are just universally torturous, but being annoyed and frustrated by them.  Yes, I cunningly picked this topic of common interest, came up with a nifty list, inserted a colorful visual, all with an eye toward getting Freshly Pressed…no, I didn’t.  But it’s still fun that it happened!  I had the following conversation with myself after seeing my tiny little blog up there with the big boys:

Little Blind Girl:  Oh, wow, this is so cool!  Look at all these page views!  Look at all these comments and all the new followers!  Thanks, WordPress!

Voice in Head:  Wait, they picked this post?  I have, like, fifty other posts that are way better.

Little Blind Girl:  Oh, don’t be a buzzkill.  This is awesome!  I want to do a backflip, except that I’m pretty sure my body doesn’t bend that way anymore.

Voice in Head:  I’m just saying.  You wrote a sonnet to Johnny Depp, actually in iambic pentameter, and they go for this one?

Little Blind Girl:  This was a good post!  It may never get included in an anthology of insightful, provocative essays, but it’s not bad for an evening’s work.

Voice in Head:  You mean twenty minutes’ work.  Thank goodness I proofread.

Little Blind Girl:  Yeah, I kind of feel like a mother who tells her kid to wear clean underwear in case he gets in an accident and has to go to the emergency room.  “Now, blog, I’m going to make sure you don’t have any typos, just in case you get Freshly Pressed.”  “Aww, come on, Little Blind Girl, that never happens!”

Voice in Head:  Until it does.

Little Blind Girl:  Exactly.

Voice in Head:  So we’re just ignoring the fact that you’re having a conversation with yourself?

Little Blind Girl:  Just like always.

Voice in Head:  Right, then.  Hey, don’t you have a policy about responding to every comment on the blog?

Little Blind Girl:  Yes.  (Pause)  Why?  How many comments are there?

Voice in Head:  Fifty eight and counting.

Little Blind Girl:  ….

Totally worth it.  Thanks to all the people who read, liked, commented on, and followed my blog, new and old readers alike!  And a special shoutout to my favorite comment, which was by laurenwhitney91:  “you are insanely hilarious. thank you for being you!”  Seriously, that’s the comment!  Best comment ever.  I love being Freshly Pressed!

Also, for those of you who read the hilarious blog The Waiting:  welcome to the world, Miss C.  You’ve got a really cool mom.

How many calories can you burn playing Angry Birds?

weights

weights (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In addition to tweaking my diet, I have to start a more intensive exercise program.  To this end, I’ve been looking at guides of promising-sounding activities and how many calories they burn, and I’ve noticed some serious omissions, really a complete lack of any activity I’m at all likely to perform.  To rectify this alarming deficiency, I would like to contribute my own list of everyday exercises that you (and, more importantly, I) can do at home or in the office, with a loose estimate of how many calories they’re likely to burn:

Little Blind Girl’s List of Everyday Exercises

  1. Banging your head against the desk/table/wall for five minutes:  15 calories
  2. Walking down to supply closet, forgetting what you went there for, walking back to office, then remembering and walking back to supply closet:  25 calories
  3. Doodling on legal pad while not really listening to tedious phone conversation:  20 calories/half hour
  4. Losing important file and cursing profusely while stomping around looking for it:  15 calories
  5. Losing important file and trying not to curse profusely because boss is around:  40 calories (note:  not recommended for extended durations)
  6. Searching for keys in the morning:  20 calories
  7. Transferring items from one purse to another (may qualify as weight training):  10 calories
  8. Throwing pen across room because it refuses to write smoothly:  5 calories, if you include walking over to where it fell and cleaning the mark off the wall
  9. Panicking over missed deadline:  15 calories
  10. Reading blogs when you should be doing work:  60 calories/hour

I am shocked that these have not yet shown up in the lists of common activities on the exercise sites.  Next you’ll be telling me that caffeine isn’t a vital nutrient!  We can’t all be professional athletes; get your exercise where you can, that’s what I say.  This list would make for an interesting exercise log, don’t you think?

Satan butter

As a result of my eye problems, I have to be very careful to get certain things in my diet, and it’s pretty closely monitored.  The latest admonition is that I’m not getting enough fat in my diet.  I have to include more sources of fat, but I should stay away from saturated fats, watch my cholesterol, and on no account touch transfats….also I have to maintain a certain caloric intake and not mess with any of the rest of my diet….I’ve been doing hours of research and calculations.  I got my taxes prepped in less than an hour, but I’ve been at this task all evening (fun Saturday night activity, huh?  That’s how I roll) and I still don’t have an answer.  I think it may boil down to this:

Don’t you wish it could be that easy?  Satan butter:  if you touch it, you’ll go blind!

Me vs. the office cold

I've been sick for a couple of weeks now. I we...

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Office cold/flu:  You know, Little Blind Girl, I’m really liking it here in your respiratory system.  I was thinking of setting up shop for a while, maybe get a little sinus infection going… something for the little viruses, you know?

Little Blind Girl:  I hate you.

Office cold/flu:  Oh, you don’t mean that.  I can tell!  You’ve made it so cushy in here, with your malnourishment and your lowered immune system from eating all that junk.  Clearly, your subconscious longed for this.

Little Blind Girl:  I hate you more every hour.

Office cold/flu:  Now, now, if that were true, you would have gone to the doctor by now.  I know you like to blame it on work and say you don’t have time, but I think we both know what’s really going on here, don’t we?

Little Blind Girl:  I hope you die.

Office cold/flu:  Is that a nice thing to say to your new life partner?

Little Blind Girl:  Oh, God, why?  What did I do that was so bad that I deserve this?

Office cold/flu:  I was thinking of setting up my office in your left sinus cavity.  The right cavity is bigger, but the left cavity has such a lovely view of your optic nerve.

Little Blind Girl:  Leave my optic nerve alone!  Sweet Jesus, am I talking to a virus?  I’ve gone round the twist at last.

Office cold/flu:  I’m so glad I’ve finally found a place I can call home.

Little Blind Girl:  You.  Me.  Doctor’s office.  Tomorrow morning.  Antibiotics at twenty paces.  To the death!

The creeping crud

"Coughs and Sneezes Spread Diseases - As ...

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You’re going about your normal day.  You get up, yawn, wash, brush your teeth, wonder what happened to your face overnight, get dressed, go into work…and all along, unbeknownst to you, it’s stalking you.  As you drive into work, hang up your coat, and turn on your lights, little by little it catches up.

As you go about your business at work, it’s slithering along behind you, sizing you up, waiting for the exact time to attack.  You’re copying a document and suddenly you hear your coworker start coughing.  But she doesn’t stop.  It just keeps getting louder and deeper and wetter, like that lung is finally on its way out.  Eventually she stops, sniffles, and gives a watery smile.  “I guess I’ve got what’s going around,” she says, as if it’s an adorable quirk and not a contagious disease she just spewed into the air.

Suddenly you realize:  you’ve been seeing and hearing it for a week.  People all around you sneezing, hacking, sweating, pale and tired.  You look around to see half the office grabbing for tissues.  You pour a cup of coffee and hear one person detailing to another the completely work-inappropriate disease-induced excretions she suffered a few days ago.  She smiles at you and says, “I hope you like the coffee.  I brewed it myself.”

At home that evening, you check your reflection closely.  Are you looking a little pale?  Is that a sheen of sweat?  You take your temperature:  it’s a little elevated.  ‘No,’ you think.  ‘This is not happening to me.’  But you wake up the next morning aching from your crown to your feet, temperature 101, wondering if last night’s dinner is about to make a repeat appearance:  beef stew, the sequel.  It’s only too true.  It’s caught up with you at last.

English: Public health poster from Spanish flu...

Image via Wikipedia

In my family, we call it the creeping crud.  You can see the people around you getting sick, and no matter how many precautions you take, no matter how many times you use the Purell, no matter how much Vitamin C you take, it will catch you.  It takes its time, makes sure you can see it coming (hence the creeping), and it makes you feel like complete crap in ways that are extremely embarrassing to talk about (hence the crud).

Beware, my friends, for the crud may be creeping up on you even as we speak.  Was that a person sneezing you saw out of the corner of your eye?  Was that faint noise a hacking cough from down the hall?  There’s no use fighting it.  The creeping crud always wins.  Just do me a favor:  if you get it, stay home.  Spare the people around you.  Especially if you’re a waiter or handle food or drink in any capacity.  There’s nothing quite like getting halfway through a meal in a restaurant and then seeing your waiter blowing his nose as he goes through the kitchen doors.