Thursday, May 21, 2009


I don't know exactly what it was that kicked my booty back into gear, but I've been extremely motivated lately when it comes to working out. For the last two and a half weeks I've swam at least three days each week. Of the 3-4 days that I haven't swam I've walked at least 2 of them. That leaves only 1-2 days each week where I haven't done cardio and on these days I have at least done crunches or weight lifting. I'm really hoping that the motivation sticks around for awhile and I don't get burned out. I think part of it is that I have some goals set and I'm trying really hard to reach them.

Tonight I achieved one of them - I swam 3200 yards in less than an hour! I'm so impressed with myself I don't even know what to do. For those of you who don't know what that is the equivalent to, let me tell you. 3200 yards is 64 laps in the pool or 128 lengths. It is a little over 1.75 miles and I can't believe I did it! :)

My next goal is to do 2 miles, but I think it's going to take me a few more weeks/months to get to that point. My goal is to achieve it before the end of the summer. Think I can do it?

Friday, May 15, 2009

At That Point

I'm kind of at that point where I've stopped caring. It's sad to say, but the telltale signs are here.

1. I've stopped wearing make-up on a regular basis. I still throw on little cover-up. If I'm lucky I'll put on mascara - but that's it. No eyeliner - that's too much work.

2. I put baby powder in my hair. It may seem like if I'm going to go through the effort to powder my hair, I might as well wash it, but no, that's way more involved - mostly because the hairdryer and straightener have to make an appearance. It's much easier to powder it and pull it into a pony tail, which is sign #3.

3. My hair is in a ponytail most days of the week. I don't want to fix it or do it or whatever. I just want it out of my way.

4. Instead of getting to work 15-20 minutes every day, I've been arriving exactly on-time or maybe 2-5 minutes ahead of time. The snooze button is being used more frequently.

5. I'm seeking out distractions to fill my time up with. I'm bored and I don't know what to do about it.

I do have a new film review post coming soon. I need to finalize some thoughts still, but that'll probably appear sometime this weekend - if not today. Happy Friday everyone. :)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Today ...

I am wearing my hair in a "poof" today and it's kind of a high poof. I always feel like I look like I should be a Country Rock Star when my hair is worn high like this. It's not intentional and I never realize how "high" it is until I'm walking out the door for work and it's too late to go back and change it. At that point I just walk with confidence and hope that no one thinks I look ridiculous. It's not that I'm insecure, I just don't want to look like a country pop star. I'm not Shania or Faith or whoever ...

Today is kind of a weird day. I am feeling a lot of different emotions and I don't know where I'm going to land. I think I didn't get enough sleep last night and so I'm a little irritable. I'm exhausted for not particular reason and frustrated with myself for blowing my diet last night and today. I'm using every last bit of myself control not to go get a cookie left over from lunch that is in the next room and I am going to force myself to go swim tonight. I'm considering taking a nap after work but I can't decide if that would be a good idea or not. I might not want to get out of bed to go swim, and that cannot happen tonight.

I think I'm very much in a place right now where I can't focus on the moment. All I can think about is the future and I'm so anxious for it to get here I'm just annoyed with the present. I don't want to do the work to get where I want to be but I know I have to put the effort in or it just wont be worth it in the long run. I feel pathetic for being so exhausted all the time because I know there are people out there who do way more than I ever do in a day and find the strength to do it again day after day after day. I don't want to be a complainer, that's not my style, but I feel like I've been complaining a lot and I don't like it. The hard part is that I don't like being fake either, so I don't want to pretend like there's nothing bothering me. I'm not about to put a smile on my face unless I have a reason, so I guess that means I have a choice. I think I'm going to choose to find something to smile about and choose not to let things get to me. I think I can live with that.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

A Broken Calculator: A Warning to All

This morning I received a phone call from my co-worker. She told me that she was having trouble with her calculator and wondered if I might be able to look at it. Something you may or may not know about me is that I’m a fairly decent problem solver. I am called quite frequently by co-workers to help resolve these sorts of “why won’t my computer/printer/calculator/chair/mouse/keyboard/[insert random software or device here] won’t work” problems. I don’t always have answers and I can’t say that I always make things better, but I must do something right because I’m the go to girl: the Jane of all trades. So, being asked to help my co-worker “fix” her calculator was nothing out of the ordinary.

When I walked into her office and found her fidgeting with the device it appeared was that the paper wouldn’t fully feed into the device. It would intake the paper just enough to give you hope that it would work, but then would suddenly stop. The noises coming from the machine and the little things in the calculator seemed to be moving appropriately. (Did you know that “little things” is the proper terminology for all the motors and whatnot in the calculator – yeah, I know, I’m so smart.) I figured that since those elements were fine that it probably wasn't a malfunction with the calculator, but there was probably something stuck in the system. My co-worker informed me that she had pulled a piece of paper out of it but we couldn’t see anything else stuck. This meant of course that we would need to take the calculator apart. Brilliant.

After rummaging through the draws in our central office supply area I found some screwdrivers. Unfortunately they were too large for the tiny little baby screws in the calculator so we resorted to opening it with a pair of small scissors and using one of the single blades to unscrew the four screws in each corner of the machine. In the middle of this process, the director of our office walked by the door and noticed us both hunched over the device with scissors in our hands. Since this is not normal workplace practice his puzzled look was completely warranted. Our attempt to explain what was going on was somehow communicated through our giggles and laughter at our commitment to this project. We did ask him if he’d like to help with our endeavor, but he declined saying that it was not his “area of expertise” and left the room. I would like you all to note that apparently, calculator fixing is my area of expertise.

We struggled to get the back side of the calculator off for awhile. Those suckers are really stuck on there. But thanks to my non-existent fingernails (which I had clipped the night before in the privacy of my own bathroom) and a flathead screwdriver we were able to pry the machine apart. We turned it off (so as not to be electrocuted) and began tinkering. After trying to feed the paper in and see what was happening we realized that there was another screw that had to be undone. Of course this screw was even smaller than the first four, so it took a bit more precision with the scissors to be successful.

As I examined the device and tried to just push the paper into it (since logic wasn’t working, maybe brute force would?) with little success, I noticed that there was a tiny little white strand that was hanging from the metal band that held the paper against the roller. “Interesting” I thought (profound I know), “I wonder if the paper is supposed to go on the other side of this little thing.” I poked around at it and realized that the strand wasn’t really a strand of string or anything thin and malleable; it was hard and plastic feeling but still movable. I could put my fingernail underneath it and almost pluck it, like a string of a guitar. I didn’t want to break this important little piece – mostly because I had no idea what it was or what its purpose was – so I was careful as I examined it. I looked at the roller from the other side to see how it was attached and realized that this thing wasn’t really attached (or if it was, it was done so very poorly) but more wedged between the bar and the roller.

At this point I had a choice. Since I didn’t know what the strand was or why it was there I figured my best bet was to remove it. The risk was that if it was a necessary component of the calculator, there was almost no way I was going to get that little guy back into place and the calculator would be even more useless. If it wasn't important however, it would fix the machine. In the end I decided to try. I figured the calculator was useless anyway (at least for printing) so what did I have to lose? I found a piece of thin cardboard (from the back of a pad of paper that I had to talk my co-worker into letting me use because she hates it when the back’s of pads are missing) and wedged it down into the device, pushing the little strand out of the way. I removed the cardboard (thankfully it didn’t get stuck) and we tried to load paper into the calculator.


Once we had solved the mystery and put the calculator back together (which I think took longer than taking it apart because of the tiny little screws and using scissors for the task instead of a screwdriver), my curiosity shifted to what this little strand was that had caused so much trouble. I picked it up and took a good look at it. Yep, it definitely looked like a thin little fingernail clipping. I turned to my co-worker and asked, “Do you clip your fingernails at your desk?” With a sheepish grin and a timid, “Yes, I did it the other day” we had the complete answer.

Of course this caused us to explode into laughter and exclamations of shock and amazement. We shared the story with our supervisor, who was disgusted to discover that it was a fingernail at the root of the problem. I shared that I had recently had a discussion with some friends about people clipping their nails at work and whether that was appropriate to do or not. Honestly, I didn’t think it was something I would ever do, but didn’t really care if others did it as long as no mess was left behind.

Well, I’m here to officially tell you: Clipping your fingernails at work is dangerous. You never know where one of those little suckers might land what damage it could do. Just ask yourself this, is the 5 minutes you save at home, worth the cost of a calculator?

Please pass this warning to each of your nail clipping co-workers. The life of a calculator is just not worth it.
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