Wednesday, September 26, 2012

At Long Last, Dad's Story Is Revealed.

Workout Wednesday is on hold for this week due to a story of unprecedented hilarity.

Remember when I urged you all to beg my father to share his airport story? And I said only you could convince him, because he'd made me promise not to tell you anything myself?

Well, your persistence paid off. Dad told his airport story, in which he arrived at the airport to fly to Colorado a full 24 hours early.

Why don't you go read it and have a laugh at his expense? Because it really is a hilarious story. Poor Dad.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Workout Wednesday: Ripped in 30 Has Begun

This week, I kept up level three of 30 Day Shred, or as Mom has begun calling it, "30 Day Tread." It was fine. But I noticed that I wasn't in complete and utter agony, I hadn't collapsed in days, and I'd completely stopped thinking up creative ways to pay Jillian Michaels back for all the torment she has inflicted upon me.

So I knew it was time to change things up. I started Ripped in 30. Not only are the workouts longer (the DVD case tells you differently, but my DVD player displays how many minutes a show has been playing, so I can tell you with confidence that the DVD case is a LIE), they also work more of your body and result in you begging for a sudden onset of unconsciousness mid-workout.

Do not start exercising with Ripped in 30. You will die.

And Jillian will say, "You're going to be fine. Four hundred pound people can do this move." And she is right. Four hundred pound people CAN do that move she's talking about, but only if it is the first physical thing they've done all day. And then I doubt they can do anything else afterward. In fact, I am pretty confident that there's a guy on the set of The Biggest Loser, stabbing people with needles full of adrenaline so they'll keep running.

"Keep running!" The adrenaline guy howls at his victims. "We need another 30 minutes of footage, and you'd better be sweating the whole time! And when you're done dripping on the floor, TAKE OFF YOUR SHIRT SO WE CAN TAKE YOUR PICTURE."

I'm almost positive that's exactly what it looks like on set.

Yesterday, Mom said to me, "Jillian would be proud of you!"

And I said, "Jillian doesn't feel pride. She only feels victory. And she cannot feel defeat. That is why all her victims fall before her."

And then Mom said, "Won't you pass me that plate over there, Laura?"

And we finished doing the dishes.

Mom knows better than to engage me when I start talking Jillian Michaels. Mostly because Jillian haunts my dreams and makes obnoxious comments about everything I plan to eat. I blame Jillian for a lot, especially for the lack of chocolate in my life these past weeks.

And don't tell me I can have dark chocolate. Dark chocolate is poison. They give dark chocolate to prisoners of war to get them to spill state secrets. Dark chocolate is what bad little boys and girls get in their stockings now that we know how harmful coal is to the environment. And the evil Santa who delivers it? That's Jillian Michaels. And once you've hacked down your dark chocolate, she stuffs you in a sack and takes you back to her lair for Christmas dinner.

Because that's what Krampus does.

I'm going to go have a glass of orange juice now.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

A Modest Proposal: In Which Dad Is Hilarious But Also Shy

I am a good daughter.

I might be snide and obnoxious. I might reply sarcastically and roll my eyes from time to time. But I am a good daughter.

I always remember birthdays and Father's Day and Mother's day. I do odd jobs without being asked. I fold clothing that doesn't belong to me. I trade cars so vehicles other than my own can get fixed.

I just want that on the record.

Dad went hiking on the Knobstone Trail. And when he got there, the trail kicked him around like a gangly freshman facing off against the whole varsity football team. That trail was really something, and unfortunately, Dad wasn't. He tells the whole story here.

At the last leg of the trail, Dad left his pack behind. And when he came back for wasn't there anymore.


But that isn't all. Early this morning he left for Colorado--

And something so hilarious happened, that I cannot stop laughing.

Unfortunately, Dad told Mom that he didn't want me talking about it on the blog. Or on Facebook. Which is tragic. Because it is the BEST STORY EVER.

So there is only one recourse. One thing that YOU can do to ensure that this story GETS TOLD.

My dad has a blog. You, if you are so inclined, can go to his blog and leave a comment on his latest post telling him that he needs to let me tell you what happened. He hasn't been getting tons of hits on his blog, because it is so new, so if you impress him by commenting, he'll realize that THE PEOPLE WANT TO KNOW. You can also, if you're a member of our church or a friend of Dad's on Facebook, go harass him on Facebook or by texting him your requests. Feel free to completely spam his blog, Facebook, and phone if you have the capability.

I leave this all in your capable hands.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Workout Wednesday: In Which I Suck at Running. Plus--NEW JEANS!

I suck at running.

See, there was an INCIDENT. This semi driver tried to kill me, and also this dude whistled at me. All within a minute. And it was unpleasant. Which made me decide that I ought to not run by my house. And where else is there for me to run? In the town where I work? Where the drug addicts and deranged library patrons will abduct and murder me?

So I am out of running luck. I need to find out a good place to run. Where I won't be killed. And where I won't have to pay five-hundred-something dollars just to run. So...running is on hold. Any ideas?

Meanwhile, I discovered that all of my jeans fell right off when I removed my belt. So that was a problem.

I went to American Eagle. I found two pairs of jeans.

And they do not fall off when I stand up. Which is great! And that means that I'm making progress with the whole fitness thing, because SMALLER PANTS!

And this has been Workout Wednesday.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

In Which Sarah Rees Brennan Is Awesome

Every year, kids come in the library looking for biographies so they can write a report based on the biography. And invariably, they come looking for athletes, scientists, or politicians...and the people they want to write about all have a few things in common. And those commonalities are: They are dead, they are white, and they are male.

This bores me.

So I tend to steer them away from Ronald Reagan (ugh. I mean, really? REAGAN? I want to vomit just thinking about him.), the George Bushes (don't get me started), Lincoln (who rocked, of course, but is a rather unoriginal subject for a report), and George Washington (do we need any more published material on him? No. Seriously. The guy has his own SHELF.).

I take the students over and I show them less-famous but VERY interesting people they can write papers on. Like, say, NELLIE BLY. Who was freaking made of awesome in a time when women were not so much allowed to be made of awesome. But she FOUND A WAY.

And very rarely, I am able to convince one young girl or boy to pick up one of these alternate famous people, and I consider my day to be a success. It is hard work. Especially because the biography section of your average library is filled with tomes based on the lives of...Dead. White. Men.

There is nothing wrong with biographies of dead white men. But there are boundless examples of non-white non-male folk who did fantastic things worth remembering. And they deserve biographies, too.

Today I took a look at Sarah Rees Brennan's blog, and she has written an absolutely fantastic Sleuth Thursday post on REAL lady sleuths from history, and they are all women who deserve their own shelf in the biography section. Or their own SHELVES. Seriously. So you should read Sarah's post.


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Workout Wednesday: What Is this Strange Madness?

On Saturday (I think it was Saturday. Could have been Sunday. Or Monday. That too.) I took a brief nap. This nap was because Paul wanted to have a bath and not a shower after mowing the lawn. That's cool, but I'd wanted to work out, and if he took a bath, I would likely have no hot water for mine. Because that happens.

I need hot water. Baths made of cold water are a form of torture. Seriously. Check out what they said about them during the Geneva Convention*.

So I took a nap, knowing I would then work out when I woke up.

During my nap, I had a dream.

Now, the last nap I took resulted in the Dogs of the Dance dream, which was pretty freaky. In this dream, I was in a small studio--like a yoga studio--only this studio was for people who wanted to do 30 Day Shred. And Jillian Michaels was leading the group. Like in the DVD, only what it would be like if you were IN the DVD. So we worked out.

And then Jillian was like, "It's time to settle our accounts!" And it turned out that for each workout session, we had to pay $7.00. Not bad. Plus there was a $19.99 registration fee. I tried to give her my debit card, but she was like, "We don't have a card reader until after January 1st, so I said "Okay, I will go next door to my bank."

She then gave me a discount because I had stuck with her program for so long. See? All this dedication even pays off in my DREAMS**.

So I went to the bank and came back and paid Jillian, and that was my dream. But here's the thing. I started thinking after I woke up about how expensive it would be to actually pay that kind of money for doing the 30 Day Shred. So I MATHED it.

Say I had only done this workout plan thing for the minimum 30 days. At $7.00 per day for 30 days, I would end up paying $210.00 PLUS the $19.99 registration fee. Meaning I would pay $229.99 for 30 days at this dream-studio.

Which means it would ALMOST BE AS EXPENSIVE AS JOINING THE YMCA. Except not really. The Y is more like twice that much for a year. Because it wants to support the community, so it has to be affordable for everyone. Everyone who can pay $495.00***. (Hint: that is not me****.)

Did I mention that the YMCA is the only option if you want to join any kind of gym in the town where I work? It would be cheaper if I were willing to make a 30 minute drive to work out at my alma mater, but I can't join there and pay for the extra gas it will take to make the trip. I can do one or the other. Hence the DVDs.

But back to my dream. Did you notice that Jillian has invaded my dreams? Because I DID. She will not even let me take a nap without plaguing me. See? Instead of resting, I had to do the 30 Day Shred in my dream and then I had to do it AGAIN when I woke up! That is totally not fair.

No one should have to double up on exercise in their dreams.

In other news, I figured out how I was getting those strange bruises on my knees. Yeah. 30 Day Shred. It is when I am doing the lunges and lose my balance, as I often do. I randomly dropped to one knee yesterday and I knew, that was where the bruises were coming from. So now, to avoid knee bruises, I have to fall backwards or sideways instead of forward.

Because not falling is not an option.

* I totally made that up. But it SHOULD have been in the Geneva Accords.

** Usually my dreams are not this nice. They usually involve me being suddenly struck mute, being blinded, or being unable to stand. Kind of like my life while I'm awake.

*** This is the annual price for a single adult. It can be paid up front or monthly, but paying monthly makes it more expensive. Also, you MUST commit for an entire year. So, even if you like to run outdoors except when there is a foot of snow on the ground, you don't get the option of joining for part of the year. They have to pay off that fancy new building.

**** Yes, I'm bitter about this. And sure, they have an arrangement where you can apply for a "scholarship" to make it cheaper for you to join, but the problem with that is the same as with financial aid for colleges: the poor get help. The rich don't need help. The middle income folks get no help (and cannot afford to go while still paying for things like a car, a house, medical stuff, heat, electricity, and the like). I have the form at home to apply for this aid, since my student loans take out such a big chunk from my income, but I haven't gotten over the rage enough to fill it out. We'll see.