19 June 2014

The hardest part to losing weight

    I have placed myself on a diet recently. Due to my diabetes, I want to lose some more weight. A noble goal, to be sure, but as everyone knows losing weight isn't easy. I think that the most difficult thing is the struggle to control how much I eat. This is made more difficult by the American habit of huge portions and huge meals.
    I have taught myself to enjoy a Weight Watchers meal. This was difficult at first because I would look at the tray and think to myself "Is this all?". I had to train myself to accept that this amount was sufficient to get me through until the next meal. I spend times between meals believing that I am very hungry, but I know that it is all in my head right now. The idea of eating to excess is something that I have been guilty of through the years.
    I am reminded of the movie "Supersize Me" in which a guy ate nothing but fast food. I have never been that bad. It does serve to illustrate the amount of unhealthy food that we consume on a regular basis. All of the nutritional labeling in the world cannot mask the fact that eating too much is bad for us. The same can be said of the best foods for us. At times, I just have to sit back and consider the amount of food that I have with each meal.
     I am not claiming to have made some grand observation or great discovery, it is just something that I thought about after having my lunch here today. 

09 June 2014

Must be Monday

        Working at a remote location can really suck at times. Whenever there is a problem with the townhouse, it takes forever to get things resolved. This morning when I arrived at the office, I found thousands of ants crawling around the windowsill! A quick call to the exterminators and they promised to come out today as early as possible. This was followed by the obligatory email to the company HQ in California about this situation.
    Someone in California must be an insomniac, because I have already been called about this issue. I already provided photos and videos to document the problem, and was then asked to tell these people once again that there was nothing out of the ordinary when I left on Friday. Apparently, there will be several meetings, and some discussions about this but I already told them that once the exterminators have been here that I will be working from home for the rest of the day. I also mentioned that I plan to telework until this issue is resolved.
    This is the ONLY WAY that I have found that works with these people. Unless it is made clear that I will NOT WORK here when these conditions are present, then these conditions will never be resolved.

07 June 2014

DC Pride weekend

      This weekend marks another DC Pride that Hal and I won't be attending. The reasons for this are numerous, but they center on the commercialization of the event and the serious lack of any real sense of community these days. With Hal working on weekends anyway, it makes no sense for me to venture into DC for the events on my own. Things just wouldn't be the same without us being there together.
    The commercialization of Pride has been taking place for many years. Initially, it was people producing arts and crafts, but it has devolved into a mini-mall for corporate America these days. While I understand the need to meet expenses for renting public spaces and other costs, the human element has been almost completely removed from the event.
    Another consideration is much more personal. When we moved to the DC area, we became actively involved with some of the local groups. Initially, things went very well, but then, the ugly green jealousy monster reared it's ugly head. Being in a relationship is difficult regardless of the genders involved. It seems that there are always people who cannot stand the mere though of other people actually being happy while they themselves are miserable. Then there are those who have to judge themselves against everyone they meet. Material possessions rule their lives and everyone else stands awaiting their pious judgement about whether or not they measure up.
     Hal and I have dealt with too many of each of these types of people. There have been attempts to drive us apart in the past, but we were always fortunate enough to realize what was going on and get away from those people. The status queens are another group that we decided to avoid after several unpleasant episodes. Hal and I are doing just fine without having to deal with all the negativity out there, and that is just within the Gay community, such as it is.
     We have great friends, gay and straight, and they are the most important people in our lives. It just makes no sense to take the effort to attend Pride just to run into the same people that we realized we had to get away from in the first place. As we get older, we tend to mellow. I do not get upset with people who judge, or rather misjudge us, anymore. Years ago, I was ready to fight at the first perceived insult to us, but time and experience have taught me that the wisest course of action is to move on and be happy.
     To all those who attend DC Pride this weekend, I wish you all a wonderful time. We will be here living our life together and in some ways missing those days that have past, but also we will be looking forward to a bright and happy future for ourselves and everyone else. 

06 June 2014

Nearing the end of an important week

    As Thursday slowly winds down here, I am looking forward to Friday and the weekend. I am on the verge of achieving a major milestone in my life. This weekend I will finally make the last payment on a bill that has dogged me for over 5 years! I plan to send out an extra mail to the company several days later informing them that my business with them is complete and that the account has been settled in full.
    This will mean that I have more money in my account each month. This could not come at a better time for me. It is time for me to be finished with this shit and get on with my life!
        On Thursday, I picked up the money and then got the money order for this last payment, Friday after work, I will fill out the money order and get it in the mail tomorrow morning. The money order and accompanying letter will state that this is my last payment and that my business is concluded. In addition, Iam sending another letter to the company at the start of next week to restate this point to them, this letter will go to the administration department and not to the accounts receivable department.
        I plan to continue putting the same amount of money into Savings for a time, I have gotten used to living on this budget and keeping things consistent will stop me from spending the money I will nbow have quite as readily. There are other things that require my attention, and having extra money available in savings will be a great feeling. By the end of this year, I will have the last bill, a small one, taken care of as well. After that, I will really be in better financial shape.
        I used to think that this day would never arrive, but it finally has. It has been a long struggle but it is nearly over with.

02 June 2014

Finally doing something that I have thought about

     Today I am taking Hal in to see his doctor for his annual eye exam. Hal has vision problems and I always drive him to these appointments even though it means I have to take a day off from work in order to do so. It is something that I have no problem doing for the person I love. At the same time, I am going to be using Evernote to do some writing while we are out. This is the thing that I have always thought about doing, but never had the proper chance to do.
     I might be very old-fashioned, but I really dislike people who are constantly checking their portable devices during time that is supposed to be about togetherness. While Hal is at the doctor, I will take some time to enjoy this beautiful day and write as I wait for him. I know that we will have a late lunch after his visit, and I won’t try to write any during that. I have always wanted to just have the time to write when I want to without distractions. In this I know that I am not alone, but I have yet to meet the person who actually accomplished this.
     I find Evernote a wonderful tool for writing because it moves effortlessly across platforms and I can stop at one device and then pick up again later without an interruption that is apparent to myself or the reader. I know several people who have become dependent on Microsoft OneNote, but I have never been a MS person. Evernote seems to be the best solution for me. It is a shame that the company I work for is totally MS dependent, but I suppose I am glad as well because it means that when I open Evernote, I am not seeing work items that would interrupt my personal and private writing.
        







        This is the scene as I am waiting on Hal. It is a beautiful day to just be outside and I am so glad that I brought my iPad with me to document this. I am happy to be outside and not at work this afternoon. We used to live in Upper Marlboro, MD which is just south of Bowie, where I am right now.
        Once Hal is done with his eye exam, we will grab a late lunch here in Bowie before venturing back to Alexandria later this afternoon. I am doing well with the BG right now, and I hope to continue that trend.
        I cannot describe how happy I am to be sitting here under a tree amd just writing. It seems like a dream of mine has finally come true. I wish that this feeling would last forever, but of course that is secondary to Hal getting a good report from his Opthamologist. I wish that inspiration would come to be in a flash right now so I could begin writing the novel that would become a best-seller and allow me to retire from my job and just write like this full-time!
        I have to say that the keyboard case for the iPad is an excellent investment, if a bit uncomfortable at time to write on. I prefer to type rather than just touch because the rhythym gets me motivated to write even more, and I cannot duplicate that with the touchscreen.
        This is a terribly disjointed blog post, but it is from the heart and I feel the enjoyment so I am happy with it. I suppose that the most important lesson I will take away from this afternoon is that I need to do something like this on the weekends when I have the free time. Just put the iPad in the backpack and write when the mood hits me as I sit and relax. 



        The Beetle is holding up very well after just over 2 years. It is a 2002 model that I bought in 2012 when I realized that I had to get rid of the Nissan Xterra that I had been driving. It was constantly having major problems and when I found the Beetle with just 65k miles on it, I realized that I had to make the change. I am hopeful that the Beetle will last me for another 10 years with proper care and maintenance. It does feel great to not have a car payment every month.
        As I mentioned earlier, when Hal is done here, we will find a place to have a nice lunch before heading back home. There is a Chinese buffet just up the road from here that we used to go to quite a bit, perhaps that will be our lunch spot, but it also depends on what Hal is in the mood for. I hope that he isn't too incapacitated from his exam. I know that dialtion of the pupils on a sunny day is no joke. The best news to hope for is that his glaucoma has not gotten any worse over the past year. I am hopeful because the last time he was fitted for glasses they noted that his vision had improved slightly.
        I cannot believe that I have written most of this in just over 15 minutes. I am enjoying this time writing. The demon has been fed, and is at peace right now. I am going to take my time with this entry and try to edit it to make it more readable  before posting.
        Moving away frm the tree has certainly helped my back. I am much more comfortable now. Provided that Hal got in to see the doctor on-time, it has been about 30 minutes. I strongly suspect that is not the case because doctors run on their own time (no pun intended) and are oblivious to us mere mortals. No problem for me, just more time to write whatever pops into my head right now.
        It is just after 1700 and we are back home. Hal's prognosis hasn't gotten any worse and that is great news. We had a lunch that isn't worth mentioning other than to say that we will never go to New China in Bowie ever again! The rush hour traffic wasn't terrible on the Beltway and that came as a surprise to me. All in all, this has been a great day!





01 June 2014

Change to my medication

        As some readers might know, I am a diabetic and have been for over 10 years, at least officially. Diabetes runs in my family through my Father's side and since the defined parameters have changed throughout the years I have probably been mildly diabetic long before that.
        As I was out running errands today, I suffered a hypoglycemic episode. For those of you who are unfamiliiar with the term, that is what happens to a diabetic when the blood glucose level runs dangerously low. I know that this happened as a result of a change in my medications that my doctor recommended. My body had developed a tolerance for the old medicine that I had been taking, so the effect was no longer what it should have been. This new medication has really made a noticeable difference to me. Today I was out running errands and I began to feel the onrushing hypoglycemia. Sweating and a vague sense ot vertigo are the signs that I have of an episode like this. I was taken by surprise but managed to get something to eat before things got to a dangerous level. After years of managing my diabetes with one set of medications, I will now have to re-evaluate things that I took for granted before. I had gotten to the point where I no longer carried my blood glucose meter with me, nor had I been carrying the emergency supply of glucose tablets. Obviously, those things have to change.
        I am glad that the situation was no worse than it was. Lesson learned for me. This new medicine means business!