Saturday, February 25, 2006

My first session with the personal trainer was... hm. There are a lot of words that could describe it. If I thought on it too much, "embarrassing" would rate pretty high. Fortunately or unfortunately, it was what I expected and proved that I *need* to do this and should've done it a long time ago. I am appallingly, unhealthily, out of shape.

I didn't even last the whole hour. I got dizzy, had to sit down, and my trainer brought me a fruit punch, which I then spilled on the floor. At least I didn't vomit. I wanted to vomit.

It can only get better, right? It was the hopping that did me in. I've never been good at hopping.

So... after the "training," or the Christy body coddling, Jer and I bought me a duffel bag and towels. I am removing all barriers to the workout process, all excuses will be negated. Or at least, minimized. I'll be meeting with my trainer twice a week for the next five weeks. It's all set up, I just have to do it.

I can make grand promises to myself, but the truth of it is, I have to take it day by day. I have to change my lifestyle or it won't ever get better. I need to think about the foods I put in my mouth and set aside time for exercise. My priorities need to shift. So there you go. That's what's going on in my head. I've got to figure out how to live differently, and fight the urge to self-sabotage.

Day by day.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

I managed to work the word "deviate" into a definition I wrote today. It made me laugh because in WoW I've been selling Savory Deviate Delights and it seemed to me that for a brief and lovely moment, the worlds converged.

When you eat a Savory Deviate Delight, you turn into other things, like a ninja or a pirate. Then you can dance on mailboxes and say "Arrrggghhh!" a lot.

I'm nervous about meeting with the trainer on Saturday. There's a sheet they asked me to fill out that has questions on it like, "Do you enjoy eating?" "Do you become irritable when you're hungry?" "Do sweets taste too sweet to you?" And I'm so tempted to lie and fill in my profile as a stunted bald 57 year old coal miner female with severe food allergies, a tail, and a heart murmur. I wonder what sort of personalized fitness and nutrition regimen that'd get me. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.)

I'm afraid that these hours will amount to nothing and I'll be left sweating and panting while the trainer barks at me to MOVE MOVE MOVE as I try not to fall off the treadmill. And there will be pain. And possible offenses to my modesty. But that's another story for another day.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

I joined a gym today. I have an appointment with a trainer on Saturday. I want to feel better, not like my body is atrophying out from under me. This is a nice gym. There are lots of equipment and classes and it's next to my bus stop. It's cold outside, so it'll be nice to be indoors, running in place.

I played WoW all weekend, and then I went grocery shopping. I'm reading "One Hundred Years of Solitude." The cats are hungry.

I wrote at work. I don't feel like writing now.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

my salon day

While I sat with my head tilted down at my lap, my hair falling gently to the salon floor in pieces, I could hear another woman complain. Only, it wasn't complaining exactly. She'd just paid an obscene amount of money to dye her hair a honey gold color, which (I sneaked a peek) looked fine, only she was having trouble adjusting. From the: my eyebrows are too dark and I had them permanently dyed this color, what do I do? To: oh, wow, I think I have to change my glasses frames. Back to: my eyebrows are ruining everything!

What did she want them to do, I wondered. Make the color disappear? And also, who permanently dyes their eyebrows a dark color and then bleaches their hair blonde the next week? It was all I could do to keep staring at my lap like I couldn't hear and wasn't interested in her insecurities. But I was, and am, and since I couldn't look at her directly it was like reality-tv radio. All the drama, none of the cleavage.

Which brings me to the relaxing scalp massage that is part of the shampooing portion of the cut. As the woman worked mysterious substances into my scalp and rubbed circles of calm into my temples, another woman dumped an entire bucket of ice into the sink next to my ear. I tell you what. Nothing says relaxing like a thousand little ice cubes colliding in a metal basin.

Then I went home and played WoW and decimated loads of harpies.

The end.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Jer and I saw "The Wedding Singer" last night in its pre-Broadway engagement at the 5th Avenue Theatre. It was okay. I'm a huge fan of Stephen Lynch, but the structure of the play had some problems. Transitions were forced, a lot of the jokes weren't funny, and the choreographer/costume designer should've talked, because I saw wayyy more bikini line than necessary.


I tend to sleep early and rise early because, well, my job requires it. If not for work I'd stay up all hours, nap whenever I wanted, and just let nature take its course. But for some reason, no one will pay me to do that, and since the play got out at 10:30pm and this morning I was up at 5:30am... I require massive amounts of caffeine to feel alive. At the moment I'm 65% zombie. The actual percentage shifts as I ingest more Diet Dr Pepper, but you get the idea.


Before the play we ate decent Mexican food and made fun of the couple sitting behind us who were very much in love and wanted everyone to know. They were in a booth like us, only they were both sitting on the bench behind me, their arms draped over the back and around each other in some twisted Gumby construction. If I leaned back in my seat, I'd touch one of their arms and we can't have that.

Speaking of touching, we were in a grocery/deli and Jer and I bought bottles of Moxie, only Jer couldn't get his open because it needed an opener, and when we asked the clerk he rummaged around and couldn't find one. So this customer, this teenage male, rattily dressed like many a teenage male, takes the bottle in an attempt to help, and it's horrifying. He grips the cap with his whole hand and twists around the lip, repeatedly. Then, as I think, ew, his hands look dirty, he lifts the bottle to his mouth, then BITES off the cap. Then he hands the bottle back to Jer.


Jer drank it anyway. Because he is hardcore for Moxie.


Sunday, February 12, 2006

Ballard rhymes with mallard

I have a new friend who generously volunteered to walk me around Ballard so I could take lots of pictures of a statue for another friend. As I pranced around the statue insisting that it "show me sexy," we saw a boat hit a power line and knock a live wire to the ground. The boat was being pulled by a trailer down a major -- but deserted -- thoroughfare. The resulting crash was most impressive. I fought the urge ingrained by 9 months of photography school to race over, offer a business card, and make a half-assed attempt to get my photo in the paper. I fought the urge, and I won. My days as an ambulance chaser are officially done.

Historic Ballard is cute with lots of boutiques, artsy places, drinking places, and grungy places. Parking could be better. We looked at handmade pillows that cost $139. I don't think I would ever pay that much for a pillow -- unless I could wear it, eat it, or a famous person puked on it -- but they were still fun to look at. We also heard a guy say, "How many of have ever gotten high off Vitamin C?" I did not raise my hand.

This is why I don't write guidebook entries.

Below is a photo I took of the Shilshole Marina, which is apparently pronounced Shil-show, and not shils-hole like I kept calling it.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

For the past few days, Paul Simon's "The Obvious Child," has been my perfect song. It's in my head when I wake up in the morning and it's the last thing I hear before going to sleep. I find myself singing it ALL the live long day.

Of course last year's perfect song was J-Lo's "Jenny from the Block" (which I still stand behind, because you should never be fooled by the rocks that I got, I'm still, I'm still, Jenny from the block...) so I understand if you eschew this particular bandwagon. But wouldn't the world be a better place if everybody just had a little son and thought we'd called him Sonny?

A few days ago I had my one-year LASIK anniversary. (I think that's the diamond anniversary.) I can still see and my eyes haven't fallen out. So far so good.

Watched "Grizzly Man" on the Discovery channel the other night. Fascinating film. I tell you, I have been dwelling on it. I keep thinking about their final moments, the sound of their screams -- that you never hear except described. Very effective. It was an absolutely well-made film, and worth (mostly) the extra forty minutes of commercials Discovery injected into the mix. It reminded me of "House of Leaves," only completely different. So there you go.

Monday, February 06, 2006

wine with my cheese

After work I went wine tasting with a friend. A local cheese shop supplied its signature macaroni and cheese dish in small white cups. I bought a bottle of wine, Sangiovese, and missed my bus, or rather, was early for the next/last one.

As I waited to cross the street and buy lumpia for the long wait home, a young man said to me, "You are the beacon. You are the light." I said, "What?" He repeated it. He wore headphones and a blue hooded sweatshirt loose and cool over faded blue jeans. I laughed and looked away. He shook his head, "But you don't believe me..."

I stepped into the diner and ordered To Go. As I sat on one of the red vinyl stools and waited I looked around in my contented fuzzy awareness. Paper signs on the wall said, "Minimum $2 order per person." Fake dark wood counters, looked as if they were covered in contact paper. Bathroom doors with their keys on long wooden dowels, the back of the restaurant a Money Gram store. And to my right, a small bar, no more than a closet, with neon lights reflected against the liquor bottles. The waitress set a paper bag in front of me and slid the styrofoam box of lumpia in sideways. I went back to the bus stop and ate with traffic as my candlelight and a sack for a tablecloth.

The sun was out all day today. Looking out from my skyscraper windows, the city looked sleepy, like it was rubbing its eyes and stretching. All that bright light so out of place and strange, but tolerated.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

gimme a break

The refs were blind. Too many bad calls. Would've been a better game if it at least felt fair.

what i see

The weather couldn't be further from what it was yesterday. I'm sitting at the pub table and experiencing bouts of productivity in between prolonged daydreaming and staring at all the people walking, rollerblading, cruising, and biking past my window. Right now there's a family on the edge of the water, a little girl in a red sweater and her father next to her wearing a blue cap and sunglasses that obscure his face. Then a few others pick rocks along the shore like flowers and a little boy creeps forward on his brightly painted tricycle. Now the stroller parade...

We have blue sky and sun for Super Bowl Sunday, but not enough junk food. I'm thinking about frying up some hush puppies from a mix my sister sent me. And maybe I'll roast some garlic to go with the brie. Besides that and the summer sausage we are woefully unprepared to gorge. Luckily we are well stocked with beer.

I've written more of my untitled-Shirley-Jackson-inspired short story. It's only about a thousand words, but I think it's the first story I've ever taken seriously. I have an idea how it'll end, I have a pretty good idea what makes up my main character, and I think it's a good concept. So there you go. If I were taking a creative writing class, I don't think I'd be ashamed to share it with a group, and that's my measure for success these days -- where would it fall on the public evisceration scale, and can I defend it?

Besides frolicking families, I can also see and hear a group of seals lying on a yellow buoy out in the water. There are seagulls perched on abandoned pilings and cargo ships with big white letters painted on their sides. The water swirls in an odd pattern, like it's hitting resistance around a rock that I can't see, a single circle of calm surrounded by a consistent current. And then there are the cars passing by with Seahawks flags trailing behind. Only a couple hours to go.

I guess I should stop stalling and get back to it.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

the light she burns

The wind is wreaking havoc outside and the local news reports devastating results. Although, if I look for myself it's business as usual, with a wee bit more whoo-ing and shoosh-ing through the cracks. Still, I should brace myself and live in fear. Live in fear! Or else.

It's just another Saturday night and I got no plans. The sun is up later these days and my sense of the diurnal is impaired. For example, it's 6pm and my brain tells me it's closer to 4. So I took an extended nap this afternoon and then neglected to perform my daily toilette. I am a scary unwashed person scavenging eggs and cheese from the refrigerator and resisting the temptation to eat my wedge of brie a day early. Because brie is clearly a super bowl food.

I've got my whole writing setup in the living room -- pub table, borrowed laptop and slat-backed pub chair -- overlooking the Seattle skyline and Elliott Bay. There's no excuse now. None. But I'll probably find some anyway. My first challenge is to write a short story inspired by the book of Shirley Jackson stories I just finished. If I were real hardcore I'd also give myself a deadline, but alas I am only the great pretender.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

I don't have anything for you exactly. My hands smell like the green onions I was chopping for the spinach dip I was making for the office Superbowl party tomorrow. Stephen Colbert is a talking head on the monitor that is sitting on the floor beside me, silent and chatty all at the same time. And a cat is licking the edges of her metal bowl so that it rattles in the next room.

I am sleepy.

The class was good. Full of smart women discussing pressing problems. I ate a cheeseburger and changed the HTML body colors on the pages we were meant to compile. I wrote, "Christy is awesome!" with a header 1 tag and changed the background to bright green. Nobody noticed me in my corner. I was subversive and attentive and a thousand other things. And I heard new words like DITA and MAML and now Stephen Colbert seems to be chewing his milk. I enjoy milk when it is cold. I drink it down in great big gulps until it burns too cold.

Have you ever showered outside under the stars? I have. In the rain and in the early morning, in the bright hot sun and in the dark. I've walked down stairs in my pink terrycloth robe and stepped on rough wooden slats, shut and bolted the door with a creak and cranked the shower handle to the side. Never enough pressure to wash my hair clean, always a little grease behind and looking up to see a blue sky and white cotton clouds drifting over my square of steam and water splatter. The boys said it's even better if you drink a cold beer under the hot water; I never tried.

The water made a funny noise as it drained through the boards to the muddy ground below. A patter and a swoosh.