Friday, June 29, 2007

The Quad Mill of Evil

Today my trainer made me do a lot of things that hurt, which is pretty much normal behavior. Because you weren't there, I drew you a picture so you too could share my experience:

Note that I am sweating and frowning. This is very important, as it sums up how I feel about the Quad Mill.

I pretty much hate it.

You do this squat thing and the platform you're standing on moves up and down while you maintain the same head level, using your legs to compensate the change in height. It's a very good exercise, as far as benefits go, but it rates an "above average" in the "pieces of gym equipment that make me want to cry" category.

Consider yourself arch-nemesied, Quad Mill!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

It's all about the fisheye, baby

On Monday, I was invited by Courtney to go on a Harbor Tour. It was most fun. We sat in the wheel house behind her husband, the captain, as he drove us (and a lot of passengers) all around Elliott Bay. It was a very relaxing way to end the work day.

On Tuesday, I came home early because my brand new lens (THANK YOU JER) was delivered by UPS, only 3 months after we ordered it. I love my new lens. The cats will learn to love it as well. Mwahahaha...



After snapping 91 pictures of the cats, I took a nap and dreamed a bear ate Jer. I woke up (dream) shouting, "But the BEAR! Ate Jer!" Because, you see, I dream in Dr. Seuss.

Today I got home about the regular time and washed my workout clothes, washed some dishes, and took the recyclables to the recycle dumpster. The end.

Epilogue: When Jer came home we went out for teriyaki and gyoza. Now I am too full for school.

Sunday, June 24, 2007


We had some crazy weather today, rain alternating with bright sun and hail. Between meteorological fits, I shot this rainbow off the balcony:

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Gasworks Park

Today Jer and I went to Gasworks Park so I could take pictures. Then we ate cupcakes in Wallingford. I did not take any pictures of the cupcakes because I was too busy eating them.

Someone spent a lot of time stencilling the machinery to warn people not to climb on it. Unfortunately, there was a typo in the stencil, which was repeated on most of the machines:

In case you've never seen it, this is what Gasworks Park looks like from the kite knoll:

Here is a frog kite for you to enjoy (I didn't rubber stamp out the crud on the lens, sorry):

Overall it is a very nice park and also where you can hop on the Burke-Gilman Trail. Later I will post spiffy photos of Gasworks Park for you to buy at On Focus Photo.

On June 21, there was a new addition to Jer's family. His little sister gave birth to a healthy baby girl. Congratulations to the happy family! (w00t. I'm an "Aunt.") The news came while we were enjoying a tasty meal at the Luna Park Cafe, which was far preferable to being nearer the delivery room, two states away.

A new location of the Tap House Grill just opened across the street from my work, and we went last night to check it out. Of the 160 beers on tap, I chose the Big Sky Summer Honey -- my favorite -- and Great Divide's Wild Raspberry Ale, a close second. Okay, I also had a Lucifer, a Belgian pale ale, but I wasn't jazzed about it. I've had better.

We had excellent service and a super bartender, especially since they've only been open 5 days. We ate several of the happy hour food specials: some *okay* sushi, not bad but not great; wontons, my favorite; goat cheese dip, better after you stir it; and the chicken wings, best deal and great flavor. A few of us went over about 4:15pm to grab a few seats at the bar, and by 6pm the place was packed. I should also mention it's underground and nicely decorated, spacious and stylish, reds and blacks and the impression of steel. Can I please eat there everyday?

I signed up to be measured for another fat loss contest on Monday. I don't plan on taking this one as seriously; I just want some extra motivation. So there's that.

Happy Saturday.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I'm at a point where hormones want to tug me down, but I recognize it and am trying to keep busy. Just a little while until Jer comes home and then we can investigate dinner options.

It's a beautiful day, sunny and warm, practically perfect in every way. I rode the water taxi home, but kept my nose stuck in a book so I didn't truly appreciate the scenery. Got a bit of color, which is a nice change from my regular ghostly pallor.

I'm doing research for my parents' visit next month and I'm thinking we'll spend a day in Victoria. Kinda pricy but I think it'll be worth it. Too bad my sister will be in (or on her way to) Iraq by then. It'd be nice to have us all together.

My trainer is trying to motivate me out of my workout funk. I've only officially gained 1 1/2 pounds since the end of the contest, but I feel like I've been devouring everything in sight and I'm still hungry. Hopefully it's just the hormones. To cheer myself up, I got a haircut yesterday. And next week I'm scheduled for an all-over color. Now I just need to buy some decent clothes that fit. Nothing like going down a size or two to beat the mean reds.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Dinner and a book

On Courtney's recommendation, Jer and I ate dinner at Jules Maes Saloon last night. And boy, was it ever tasty.

I ordered the meatloaf sandwich with tater tots and Jer had the pork chops with garlic mashed potatoes. Plus a pint of Manny's each. The staff was very friendly and outgoing and the atmosphere was cool and laid back -- very saloon-like. I plan to take my parents when they visit next month; I think they'll dig it.

We only got slightly lost trying to find the place, but that was because we didn't write down the address. It was also our first foray into Georgetown, which is much closer than I thought. (That will be its epitaph.) There's still so much of Seattle we haven't explored yet.

After dinner we stopped at Barnes and Noble so I could buy a book: Dale Carnegie's "How to Stop Worrying and Start Living". I wish I could tell you which financial blog recommended it, but I read about six of them and I can't find the entry. Anyway, I find I need to read books like this every so often to stay motivated, and I've been a big fan of Dale Carnegie's practical style ever since "How to Win Friends..." made its way to my shelf. I'm only a chapter in, but I'm not disappointed. Even though some of the advice may seem like common sense, it doesn't mean anybody practices it.

It's grey and the birds are chirping. Welcome to Sunday.

Friday, June 15, 2007

I hung out with friends tonight, which I don't do often enough. This week I haven't adhered to a fitness regimen or eaten very well, but I forgive myself. I'll make it up next week.

The photo thing is stalled again. I'll have to scan some more of my photos this weekend and send some emails. Persistence wins in the end, but I'm awfully sick of being persistent. For once, just hand it to me, okay?

You got me. I drank a few tonight. I am technically blogging over the legal limit.

As a result and without further ado, I bid you farewell. May my nonsense cease to litter the interweb world with its lunacy and detract from the relevant and significant entries of our best global thinkers.

All of us are unique, you know. Every last one.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

I am about to pass out from exhaustion, but I'll live. I snapped lots and lots of photos at a company event today and most of them turned out well. I used my fixed 50mm f/1.4 lens and got some great portraits. Then I received an email from someone who is interested in having me submit some freelance shots for a local paper, which made my day.

After so many rejections lately, it was nice to have someone reach out to me. I wish I wasn't quite so tired. I'm afraid my email response back will sound a little stilted -- or at least won't properly convey my eagerness. Because hey, eager.

It's probably bad form to sign off the email with YIPPEE!!!, right?

On second thought, don't answer that.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

I must've overdone it at the gym. I can barely move my right arm, which of course makes me think what I always think when I do that: Will Ferrell's Anchorman. As he's pretending to have done hundreds of curls to impress Christina Applegate's character he says, "I can barely lift my arms I did so many..." Cracks me up everytime.

Which then reminds me of another line from the film, "Sixty percent of the time it works every time." That's in reference to a cologne called Sex Panther and its effect on women. If you haven't seen Anchorman yet and you like a good comedy, I highly recommend it.

So yesterday I made the long trek across the 520 bridge and attended a class at Bellevue Community College (BCC) called "Starting Your Own Business." It was only 3 hours long, but it was full of valuable and practical information. I now know what licenses I need, where to apply, and which business structure I'm going to use. Also, I have a better understanding of the tax consequences.

If you're in the area and looking for learning opportunities, the Continuing Education program at BCC is very good. Over the past year I've taken several classes in their Technical Writing Certificate series, and I've never been disappointed. Also, they have an excellent on-site deli and next door, a Burgermaster with car service. I don't go just for the food, but it sure doesn't hurt.

Friday, June 08, 2007

I added 6 more photos to the On Focus Photo Store, which brings the total to 42. You can view them by clicking Newest Photos.

I also submitted a photo to the challenge: Purity.

I've spent entirely too much time at the computer today. Time for a change of pace. I'll go read myself to sleep with my newest purchase: Photos That Sell.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

old school

I was reviewing photos for inclusion in the store when I came across this one:

Jer and me at Bass Lake, May 2004. Back when he was growing out his facial hair and I still wore prescription sunglasses... Besides being able to buy hard liquor in grocery stores, the only other thing I really miss about California, is Yosemite. That is one damn pretty place.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

A co-worker and I were sharing all our stupid little food tricks: tuna from the can on a slice of wheat bread folded over with hot sauce (mine); grape nuts with spices instead of croutons (hers); Tasty Bite (mine); protein powder in orange juice (hers); when I stopped and chuckled.

I don't eat food normally anymore. This stupid gym challenge changed me. I pick off most of the cheese now, I find creative ways to eat tuna, I can hold an intelligent conversation about liquid egg whites, complex carbs, and glycogen.

Tonight I went out of my way to order salmon for dinner but I didn't opt for the fries or the Caesar Salad to go with it, which I always ordered before. I weighed the options and I chose a tiny beer. In other words, I negotiated calories with myself and I didn't even notice. At least, not until much later.

I was in a funk this morning that I didn't really snap out of until I went to the stupid gym.

Gah. What's happening to me?

And then I went and did something dumb. I agreed to set a new goal for myself: lose 8 pounds in the next month. If I hit that weight, it'll be like stepping in a time machine to 7 years ago, right after Jer and I started dating and we were in that music video with Vertical Horizon (and about a hundred other people.)

Wow. Time flies when you're not dancing in slow motion in a short, black dress and being filmed under hot lights. It may as well be Y2K all over again.

I wonder if I still have that dress...

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

brace yourself!

I broke down and bought a knee brace. Today I wore it on the treadmill for the first time. It is like a rite of passage, this weakness. Something worthy of acknowledgement.

On this day in the year 2007, I join my sister and my father in the family Bad Knee Club. As the newest member, I accept responsibility for bringing refreshments to our next club meeting. How do little meatballs sound?

Tally ho!

Another week, another exciting photo challenge!

I've posted a photo for last week's challenge. This week the challenge is: How I See Myself.

I went with a fish theme.

Monday, June 04, 2007

So, uh, speaking of drunken Friday antics... my dear friend Courtney posted some photos on her blog. Better you hear about it from me, rather than on the street.

In case it isn't clear by the captions, I'm the one with the pigtails.

P.S. I'm wearing a Firestone Walker Brewing Company shirt. They sell great mustard.

P.P.S. Because I failed to mention it before, my three failures of the last week were: exercise, writing, and photography. Awesome!

I will allow myself a quick moment to say this past week has been disappointing. I've lost 3 distinct challenges in that time... lost, failed, rejected, what have you. I know the only way you can succeed is to keep brushing yourself off and try again. Yep. I know that. Deeply and truly, I do. But wouldn't it be nice if I won something every once in awhile?

I'm almost positive it would be very nice.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

On a lighter note, cats!

Chiana asleep in a shoe box with her yarn:

A slightly blurry Vash looms large. An even blurrier Jer sits at his computer in the background:

Chiana is not impressed:

So... the best thing about last night is that I made it home okay, which was actually an issue because I'm an idiot.

Happy Saturday.