Friday, July 3, 2015

You look like a maniac ax murderer, she said

At least it wasn't someone I was trying to get into bed.

But the day started really well.

The pre-stampede parade traffic downtown was still light when we got into Talisman. I could see one person cheating on the parking; they were clearly going to the parade, and not coming in for a workout. Both of them, and the kids should have picked the workout.

As almost always, it was a lovely swim. We had a lane to ourselves, and we churned back and forth. The improvements Michelle has made! Her right leg still gets off the reservation, but she is swimming quite well. Soon she will be able to cope with a triathlon wave start.

I played with fish stroke a bit more, and at one point actually ended up in the next lane, to the startlement of me and the girl swimming in it. At least I didn't run into her, though I totally surfaced into the lane ropes once. Good thing nobody had a video camera running. My inner shark showed up briefly to laugh at me. Thanks buddy.

Part of the technique was to work on reach and catch. It messed up my kick, such as it is, because the timing is subtly different. I was really working on keeping my elbows high, and I could feel my shoulders hard at it. It's funny, I was pushing hard, and felt fast, but the clock said 93 seconds (100 m long course). A bit later I tried again, felt slower and more thrashy, even though I was working HARD on form, and the clock said 91 seconds. Some days I don't know. The rest was regular drills and stuff, with lots of kick drills.

Did you know you can't currently buy crushed brick except at Burnco? The problem is the delivery methods discussed on their website involve a dump truck or a big cubic yard bag. I need about 2/27th of that amount. Maybe tomorrow or Sunday I'll show up with a couple pails in my car trunk and see if they take pity on me.

Then it was off to renew my business corporation thingie with the Alberta government. It used to be $20, and that bastard Prentice raised it to $55. Good thing I didn't vote for him. Oh well, it's a deductible expense.

I also had to renew my drivers license. What SHOULD be happening here is that I make an appointment to sit in a car simulator, and they run me through a standardized test to see if I still have the reflexes and skills needed to be on the roads. This should happen to everybody, every 5 years. None of this age-ism shit. More often when you turn into a geezer, but I admit the geezer-o-meter is not yet perfected.

If they can train airplane pilots well enough in a simulator that the first time they actually fly the airplane it has passengers in it, then they can make car simulators for testing drivers. I have this vision of the simulator starting at the bottom of the City Hall parkade. The simulator has a camera looking at your eyes so it knows where you are looking. If you don't look the right way, a pedestrian appears, and gets splattered all over your windshield, and you fail. Maybe they scream a lot. Come back in a month sir or ma'am, and by the way, your license is revoked. You are too dangerous to be allowed on the road, and can buy a bus pass at the kiosk in the lobby.

For training male teenaged drivers I'd be merciless. They make a mistake, and they crawl out of the simulator with bruises from the seatbelt and airbag, their ears ringing, and with wet pants. Again and again, as often as necessary, and in the meantime they are not on the road. There would be one section of the regular test where people try to text on a cell phone while driving. Remember what I said about wet pants?

It sounds harsh, but thousands of people are maimed or die on Canadian roads every year. You, yes you, are almost certainly a worse driver than you think. How can 80% of us think we are above average drivers? Listening to the traffic report any weekday ought to disabuse you of that notion.

I digress. What actually happens is some paperwork gets signed, and they take a photo. This has not been my strong suit in life. The camera loves some people, and I am not one of them. There are fewer than a dozen photos of me that I like. It's not as bad in recent years; I'm not sure why.

But when the first picture came up, she exclaimed, "Geez, you look like a maniac ax-murderer! Let's do that again." I have to admit, those eyes were pretty scary. I dialed it back a bit, and it was ok. So why can't I turn that on in work meetings, and quell people that are disagreeing with me because they don't realize I am right and they are wrong?

Which leads to another topic, those disagreements. It's actually a sign of respect. I'm helping them because I like them, or respect them, and am helping them to realize the error of their ways. I can see the pit ahead of them, and I'm trying to stop them from ending up in the pit. Or more to the point, to stop them from dragging me into the pit. Often they don't know there are hungry predators in the pit.

Some people I've worked with (I'm looking at YOU, Lucy, and 3 of 9) I could see the path lying open and clear to the pit. For them I slipped ahead and woke up the predators. You don't need to think very hard to understand what I thought of them.

And then there was the branch of the Stampede Parade through Coop, the toddle of the geezers. Holy cow. They were everywhere. I was in because I'd finished off the sunscreen and will need more soon. Really soon. I was disappointed they didn't seem to have the 100 SPF, and had to make do with 50 SPF. I'll just put on two layers and look elsewhere for the good stuff. I need it.

I need to get a good night's sleep, and be ready for my photo shoot tomorrow.

 The blog sound track.

Trooper (Three dressed up as a nine)
Trooper (The boys in the bright white sports car)
The Knack (Good Girls Don't)
Cheap Trick (Dream Police)
Cheap Trick (Ain't that a Shame, Live at Budokan, video!)
Cheap Trick (Surrender, Midnight Special)
Golden Earing (Radar Love)
Blonde (Heart of Glass) [How on earth can Debbie Harry be 70??!!]]
Sparks (This town ain't big enough for both of us)
The Sweet (Ballroom Blitz) [Do any of you remember the album cover that slid up and down to produce a wink?]
Deep Purple (Smoke on the Water)

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