Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Ten things, or Cacglarch!#@*(cugcugclachtch!

That's about the sound I've been making starting this afternoon. I had a few coughs before, but nothing worth talking about. These are so impressive I've decided not to go to yoga class tonight. I'm sure the rest of the class appreciates me not disturbing the deep peace of shauvasana for them. To say nothing of the instructor wanting to wash everything I got near.

Yet oddly enough I don't feel too bad. This is the weirdest cold I've ever had, and I'm still not convinced it's really a cold. Usually those start with a tickle in my through, I start coughing, and my nose starts running, then everything tapers off and I start feeling better. This time it started with pool snuffle on Friday and it got worse. Saturday was ok and I thought I was over it. Sunday was not too bad, and if it hadn't been for other things I'd have probably got through a semblance of the workout. Monday morning I was ok enough for the swim, but the run was a shambles. Tuesday I was down for the count, nose running like tap, head stuffed up, though it cleared up late in the day, but I could feel things migrating toward my throat. Wednesday morning wasn't bad, and I got through a half hour of core feeling not too bad, then the slide down hill started. My nose is fine, but the coughing is getting out of hand.

I was tagged by Copiaverborum to come up with ten things that make me happy. Unfortunately between her (complete with photo's too) and LooseMoose , they took all the good answers. So I'll just do the best I can.

1. A chunky peanut butter and crunchy honey sandwich on fresh whole wheat bread with milk. What can I say? I'm a man of simple tastes and this has been a staple of my diet since before I was a teenager. There were days my mother despaired about the peanut butter bill. This is probably top of the list for comfort foods for me. Did I ever tell you my grandfather kept bees on his farm, and I know what pure clover honey at the perfect stage of crystalization tastes like, on home made bread, with fresh farm butter.

2. My wife Linda, only in second place because I've been on the peanut butter for about twice as long as I've known her. I don't think I'd be here without her. I wouldn't like it, but I could give up peanut butter if I had to.

3. Being at home to enjoy the peace and quiet. Puttering about, or relaxing. Not having to go anywhere, or do anything for a while.

4. Making and eating a restorative double chocolate chip mint cookie. Or swiping a raw one (Look, a polar bear!) off the tray for QA purposes when Linda makes them. Second only to #1 for comfort food status.

5. Making, and drinking wine.

6. Discovering that chocolate was an acceptable, even recommended recovery food. There is a place here in town that roasts their own chocolate beans, and makes their own chocolate mixtures, and will make truffles to order, so you can pick them up only minutes old. I'm not kidding. It's a good thing this place is inconvenient for me to get to. I'd need help if I were to get a job near there. I'm serious. Following that link is almost certain to lead to chocolate lust, which unfortunately for most of you, will have to be satisfied with inferior chocolate.

7. Getting enough sleep. This is very difficult. My sleep patterns were disrupted years ago by working a rotating shift. It took about a year to start getting hungry and sleepy at the right times after quitting that job. The workouts have helped with this, but it's rare that I get more than 6 hours good sleep in a night, and I actually need a bit more than that.

8. Good coffee. Not the swill served at most commercial establishments, and you all know who I'm talking about. Yes, them too. We're a bit fanatic about keeping our coffee maker clean, and grinding good beans fresh.

9. A great workout. One that pushes me, leaves me tired, but not falling down exhausted. One that is a bit further, faster, or longer than I've gone before and still feeling like I could go more. Seeing the improvement over time, and knowing more will happen if I continue to work. I love getting out on my bike and riding towards the mountains, any time of day, because they're always different, and always beautiful, stunning, and impressive.

10. Writing. I get a big kick out of writing. Just the act of organizing my thoughts and getting them onto a computer screen, or written out in ink. That's why my blogs and blog comments are so long sometimes. I have often thought that the single most effective thing people could do to make their lives more efficient is to actually learn to type. I could retire a rich man if I had a dollar for every poor typist I've seen trying to use a computer.  No wonder email isn't an efficient form of communication.

My mom made me take typing in school and it's probably the most useful course I've ever taken in my life. At the time, of course, I thought the class would be full of girls. Now, I almost can't take notes by hand. My handwriting is an unreadable scrawl, though the slate that work gave me did better at deciphering it than I did, and oddly enough better than my printing. Given a choice, I'd always take notes by typing.

I've got a novel part written, involving a murder mystery love story (sort of) set in the plant I worked shift work in. I love writing the first draft to reports because that's where the easy part of writing happens. Ok, I'll tell you. Barf it all out onto the page. That's the easy part. The hard part is boiling it down. I have The Elements of Style advice on this memorized. (If you don't know that book, you almost certainly are not a good writer. Sorry. Have mercy on your readers and read it.) The advice? Omit needless words.

I don't know if I'm supposed to tag other readers. Probably 10 of them, for symmetry. But I'm not gonna. My readers are an ornery bunch and some know where I live. They're too busy working out (Hi Julie), taking their kids to Hawaii (Hi Jenna), trying to get a house sold (Hi Susi), trying to juggle three projects and a life and workouts (Hi Shannon), running her tail off (Hi Amber), (training for an insane May race schedule (Hi Missy), feeding hordes of guests breakfast (Hi Cath), juggling the kids hockey schedule (Hi Kelly), trying to get through the new coach break in period (Hi Darryl), and cooking up a storm (Hi Leana), to say nothing of some others who are too eclectic to be summarized so easily. If you're one of the usual suspects for reading, and you feel like it, you can consider yourself tagged. Or not. Let me know and I'll come read. Except for you who tagged me, and you who took the other good answers. You know who you are.

There. I have written. I am happy. Now I'm going to bed.

12 comments:

  1. Not a bad list. But I was a little disappointed that SCA didn't make the list. I mean, yeah, it was a part of your past, but still...

    And wow! Look at how many female reader you have?! Keith! What does this say? What? Spill it!

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  2. I'm kinda disappointed triathlon, or a Great workout as you put it isn't higher. :P

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  3. it says he is a wild sexy beast and we chics can't get enough :) lol

    Good list. I am not tagged :)

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  4. Liking the list. I need to try out #1 sometime, though I realize it will be inferior because I won't be able to use homemade ingredients.

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  5. #2 - Ahhhh. that's sweet!
    #5 - you make your own wine?! that's cool. I know it's a tough process (to keep it sterile). Do you do it at home?
    #8 - HELL YEAH. Real coffee drinkers save Starfucks for the tourists her in the PNW. I've never met a black coffee drinker that liked it. GROSS!!!

    p.s do you consider a 286 meter long ship with the capacity to carry 1.3 million barrells of oil 'teeny tiny'?

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  6. Good call. what did you do for BP? He's the 1 A/E on the Alaskan Ledgend...

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  7. I'm one of those people who can't type -- it takes me forever to type out an email. Hence my complete surrender when I accidentally hit the wrong button and the page goes back or forward and I lose my entire email before I send it. This is why I send very short emails. LOL!!!

    I took typing in Grade 7 -- they never offered another class after that -- I fell through the cracks. Hahahahahahahaha!!!

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  8. Typing WAS one of the best classes I ever took AND my mom was a business class teacher back in the day - typing AND short hand. The lost art of short hand. Anyway, great list. Now I have to think of 10 good things..you took a lot of them yourself ya know.

    Peanut butter and honey sandwich is the bomb.

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  9. I can't type either-I am the master of hunt and peck. Watching me would be like nails on a chalkboard to you. And the funny thing is that I have learned to type on TWO separate occasions.

    Love number 2, very sweet.

    Finish that novel so we can read it sometime!

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  10. I vote for #2, 3, 5, 7, 8 and 9. Liked the post :)

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  11. Good list, Keith. But don't be surprised when Linda feeds you to the polar bears. Never, ever, ever list your woman after peanut butter sandwiches. Can't belive they forgot to mention that in Teh Elements of Style. Jeesh....

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  12. You live in Canada...you clearly win on the who-has-colder-weather contest! In fact, I think we in Chicago can blame Canada for the current blast of arctic air heading our way. Thanks. Thanks a lot for that ;)

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