May 10

Hello, my name is Adventurer Rich, and I’m fat.

There needs to be a twelve-step program for fat-o-holics.  Food is most definitely a drug, and I’m addicted.

Ever since the holidays, I have had a bit of added stress in my life.  And by “bit” I mean I’m genuinely surprised my heart hasn’t exploded.  I don’t deal with the regular old stress of daily life very well, so when stress is added that makes me wonder what in the hell I’m going to do with my entire future, I don’t hold up too well.

And I eat.

I wish I were one of these people whose appetite just disappears when they get stressed or depressed.  You know the type, people who fall into a funk and they lose like twenty pounds because they are too depressed to even eat.  If I was one of these people, given my predisposition to look at the darker side of all situations,  I’d be super-model thin.  I am, however, the complete opposite of these lucky sons-a-guns who can’t eat when they are down.  When I’m in the dumps, I eat like a pig.

  • Can’t figure out how I’m ever going to be able to retire?  Eat some left-over pizza and it doesn’t matter as much.
  • Realize that most of my life has been wasted giving up on dreams?  A roll of summer sausage and a tin of Pringles make the pain go away.
  • Wondering how we’re going to cover the mortgage and other regular monthly bills plus the plethora of medical bills that recently reared their ugly heads while adding a teen driver to our insurance?  PB&J with triple PB sounds about right.
  • Job situation a little shaky and not sure what is going to happen if that falls apart?  One-pound block of sharp cheddar, take me away…

So, needless to say, I’ve packed on a few pounds over the last few months.  The problem is, I not only eat when I’m stressed or depressed, I eat when I’m happy too.  Proud of the older boy for his performance at a soccer game; celebrate with a fast food treat!  Proud of the younger boy for earning his next belt in karate; stop by the bakery and get some donuts!

So, whether I’m winning or losing, I’m gaining weight.  The more I weigh, the higher the old blood pressure gets, the more I feel like crap, the more my self-esteem slips, the more I eat, the more I weigh…

See the problem?

I love food. Food is a great way to celebrate when you are happy and it makes you feel better when you are down.  And any food that doesn’t taste like butt makes you fat.

So I am fat.

I exercise, but exercise just makes me hungry.  The more I exercise, the more I eat after exercising.

So I am fat.

I was trying to lose weight last June, and I wrote about it.  I actually weigh more now than I did then, and that sucks.  I am officially “obese”.

Actually being obese frees me in so many ways…

  • I can wear my pajamas to Walmart… I can probably even use Walmart’s little scooter/shopping cart and park it in the middle of an aisle while I take my sweet time deciding which flavor of Doritos I want.
  • I can let my feeling of guilt slip away while filling that seventh plate at the all-you-can-eat buffet.
  • I can drop ten bucks at McDonald’s ordering only from the dollar menu… all for me… for a snack between lunch and supper…
  • Celery no longer needs to take up any space in my fridge.
  • Screw the diet pop; I’m going full-on high fructose corn syrup!  I don’t even need the carbonated water to thin it down.  Just point me directly to the high fructose corn syrup and some Red Bull: the breakfast of champions…
  • Elevators and escalators will no longer be the “fun” way to get where I am going; they will be a necessity to prevent stroke or cardiac arrest.
  • Trips to the YMCA, long having been a pain in the butt, are no longer necessary.  The sooner I let my obesity consume me, the sooner disability and a life of leisure can kick in.
  • I may be shortening my life, but I’d rather live a short, happy, fat life than a miserable, long life eating things that make my taste buds cringe and my poop green.

I used to think I could get in shape.  I used to think I could be healthy.  I used to think a lot of things…  I try not to think anymore.  Thinking hurts.  Smart people can think and it doesn’t hurt, but it hurts me when I think. I must not be very smart.  Being not very smart is kind of depressing… pass the pork rinds…

 

 

Tagged with:
Feb 01

Okay, so a couple of weeks ago, I made my kids sit down with the wife and me and watch City Slickers.  I had DVRd it a few weeks prior and thought it would make for a good, relatively clean night of family entertainment.

Now, I had originally seen City Slickers pretty much when it had first come out back in the early 90s.  In the early 90s, I was in my early 20s and I remembered thinking the movie was pretty funny.  I didn’t remember the entire plot, but I remembered that it was a bunch of city guys going on a cattle drive to find themselves or something.  I remember Jack Palance being funny, and I remember that he won like an Academy Award for best supporting actor for his role (which must have meant that there weren’t many actors up for that award that year…).

So, the wife and I and the kids all settle in and we’re gonna have us a good couple of hours of family comedy.  And then the movie starts and Billy Crystal’s character is all mid-life-crisis-ish because he is approaching 40 and he hasn’t really accomplished anything of importance with his career and he wants to figure out something that gives his life meaning…

***screeching breaking sound of tires on pavement***

Whoa there, family fun night!  As a 44-year-old guy, I’m not finding the premise nearly as funny as I did over 20 years ago.

So Billy Crystal’s character is completely, cynically miserable and his wife has had enough.  She is tired of dealing with his misery and she tells him to go with his friends on this cattle drive and find his “smile” again.  He wants to know what they are going to do if he can’t find his smile, and she foreshadows that his ass is going to be on the street if he can’t find his smile.

There is absolutely nothing funny about this movie.

So the mid-life crisis crew go on the cattle drive and the hired hands are jerks and crusty old Jack Palance’s character starts out creepy but ends up being a good guy and then he dies and the jerky hired hands take off and the mid-lifers are left to bring in the cattle on their own.  And they do.  The city slickers drive the cattle through a storm to the destination and they find their manliness and whatnot and they are all happy.  And Billy Crystal’s character sees his wife and he smiles and points at his smile.

“I found it,” he says.

And the wife says, “So, are you going to quit your job?”

And Billy Crystal’s character says, “Nope. I’m just going to do my job better!”

WHAT!!!  There is nothing funny or touching or ANYTHING about this movie.  How did I ever think this movie was funny?  What in the name of anything made me think I would enjoy watching this stupid movie in my 40s?  Billy Crystal goes on a cattle drive and discovers that driving cows has given his mid-life ass meaning and he doesn’t need a job to give his life meaning because he drove the cows and he just needs to quit looking for something better and do his current, meaningless job selling radio advertising better to be a better person or something.  This may be the stupidest movie EVER!

And then it hit me… it’s only a movie.  City Slickers is not real life.  Billy Crystal didn’t really drive those cattle.  Billy Crystal was a wildly popular comedian before he landed major roles in movies suck as When Harry Met Sally, Throw Mama from the Train, City Slickers and City Slickers II.  Billy Crystal found even more success later in life as the voice of Mike Wazowski in Monster’s, Inc and Monster’s University.  Billy Crystal is a beloved, famous millionaire.  Billy Crystal does not and probably never has worked as a crappy ad salesperson.

And I have come to the conclusion that old comedies are not meant for current family movie nights…

Tagged with:
Nov 13

Is anyone going to argue with that?  How can they?  Getting old sucks and, the really crappy thing is, there isn’t a thing you can do to stop it.  As long as you are alive, you will get older.  And no matter how well you take care of yourself, time will not be kind to you.  Your once supple young body will become a fragile hindrance to a joyful life.  No one can really avoid aging, and aging means you will get old (at least older than you were).

 

I went on a camping trip recently with a bunch of scouts.  One of the other adults on the campout took some pictures and posted them on Facebook.  In one of the pictures, there was some old piece of crap holding my coffee mug and wearing my jacket?  When did this SOB sneak into my tent and steal my stuff?  Then I realized, the old SOB was me… I wanted to cry.  Is that really what I look like to others?  I’m even more hideous than I originally suspected!  Was I always like this?

So I went looking at some pictures of me when I was younger.  I found the following:

.

.

.

 photo young_zps42ca1148.jpg

.

.

.

Yes, I was a goober.  Yes, I was a dork.  This picture was taken when I was most likely a sophomore in high school.  I was around 15-years-old.  I was the age my oldest son is now.  Even though I was a tool, look at how young I appeared!  My smile was sincere, my freckles were fresh, my eyes sparkled.  I looked like the kind of guy who would be fun to hang out with.  I could see me being friends with this guy.  He seems to have a certain amount of, oh, I don’t know, joy?

… and then I go back to the recent picture of me on the camp out…

.

.

.

 photo old_zps99074b4d.jpg

This is what 44 looks like, boys and girls. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

.

.

.

There doesn’t appear to be any joy in this face.  The smile seems forced, only there because someone is shoving a camera in his face.  The freckles have long since faded into the abyss of age.  The eyes are sunken, dead, no sign of spark.  It almost appears that someone, at some point, may have smacked him in the face with a shovel a few times.  Wrinkles everywhere.  His eyes are strangely off, again going back to the smacked with a shovel theory.  This does not look like someone I would want to hang out with.  This looks like someone who is going to start every conversation with, “Back in my day…”  Good gravy, how did this happen to me?  When did I become this !?!

Life.

Life did this to me.

You can sugar coat it any way you want, but life tends to… well… suck the life right out of you.  Those wrinkles aren’t from smiling too much.  The eyes aren’t dead because of some deeper gained understanding of some critical knowledge.  The beard isn’t gray because of some sort of wisdom nonsense.  I look the way I do because life takes a toll.  Dreams aren’t realized and goals aren’t met and hairs go gray and wrinkles appear.  You start to be more realistic about what you are actually going to accomplish with your life and your eyes lose most of their sparkle.  You swear that you are never going to look as old as the people that you thought of as old when you were young, and some jerk hits you in the face repeatedly with a shovel…

Life’s tough, kiddos.  Enjoy your youth while you have it.  Do the right things with it…

Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,
Before the difficult days come,
And the years draw near when you say,
“I have no pleasure in them”

Ecclesiastes 12:1 (NKJV)

Tagged with:
Mar 07

Everyone has his or her own version of the “American Dream” tucked away somewhere in the nether-regions of her or his subconscious.  Our personal versions of the “American Dream” are part of what motivates us to get out of bed every morning and live life.

Little Johnny wants to grow up and get married and have a family and own a home and be a fireman so he can spend his life saving the lives of others.  Then Little Johnny wants to retire and travel and enjoy his final years.

.

.

. Fireman Dream photo fireman_zps7f69be7d.jpg .

.

.

Little Suzie wants to grow up and get married and have a family and own a home and be a doctor so she can spend her life saving the lives of others.  Then Little Suzie wants to retire and travel and enjoy her final years.

.

.

. Dr. Dream photo doctor_zps930eac1a.jpeg .

.

.

Little Barack and Little George wanted to grow up to be politicians so they could meddle in people’s lives and screw over a country.

Everyone has a dream.  Some people realize that dream, and the rest of us learn to settle.

Settling sucks.

Little Adventurer Rich wanted to grow up and get married and have a family and own a home and be a something-that-makes-a-lot-of-money-and-helps-a-lot-of-people-but-isn’t-dangerous-or-doesn’t-involve-sticking-his-hands-in-other-people’s-guts.  Then Little Adventurer Rich wanted to retire and travel and enjoy his final years.

.

.

. Rich Dream photo richman_zps1b0ff362.jpg .

.

.

Little Adventurer Rich got a cold slap across the face as a wake-up call.  When you decide to grow roots in rural Nebraska, there is no such thing as a job where you can make a lot of money.  If you don’t get the job that pays a lot of money, the retirement and travel associated with the retirement become pipe dreams.

I’m thankful for the marriage and the family and the house.  The rest of my “American Dream” is things I will need to learn to live without.  Well, I guess those things are already lacking, so I won’t need to learn to live without them… I need to learn that I will never have them.  It’s called “settling”.

As I cruise through this ever-increasingly difficult mid-life crisis, things start to fall into perspective.  I’m not the kind of guy who wants a fancy sports car or a token 20-something-year-old mistress to help realize unfulfilled dreams.  I’m happy driving crappy used cars (even considering getting a minivan).  My wife is my only link to sanity.  If I lost her, I would lose all bearing on life.  So, I’ll keep my 40-something-year-old model.  Besides, the only 20-something-year-olds interested in old farts like me are after gold, and my veins are full of nothing but pyrite and cholesterol.

So, since I’m not looking for the typical remedies for my ills, I’ve been trying to figure out how to become less miserable.  I look in the mirror and this old guy looks back at me, with his gray hairs and his frown lines, and I start to get pissed off at him.  He looks so much older than I feel.  Why didn’t he do something with his life?  Why couldn’t he have been better looking or more self-confident?  Why didn’t he take advantage of opportunities that I’m sure were available to him (yet, strangely enough, neither he nor I can think of any)?  Why has he let me down?  Ooh, sometimes I just want to throttle that loser in the mirror.  He doesn’t look like the kind of guy who would ever be successful.  He looks like a stupid goat farmer…

… goat farmer…

…GOAT FARMER!

.

.

. Goat Farmer photo goatman_zpsadd1d51a.jpg .

.

.

OH…EM…GEE!  I look like a goat farmer!  A stupid goat farmer!  Being a goat farmer would be AWESOME!  No stupid customer problems! No stupid technology! Just lots and lots of goats!  You feed them, you breed them, you take care of them, maybe you milk them, then you kill them and you eat them. Maybe you sell them.  Maybe you sell the milk or sell the meat.  Maybe you hire them out to breed with someone else’s goats.

OH… EM… GEE! I could be a GOAT PIMP!

.

.

. Goat Pimp photo goatpimp_zps351c9bcd.jpg .

.

.

If not goats, maybe ostrich, or rabbit, or some other semi-exotic meat that people are willing to buy.  I wouldn’t make my riches being an exotic meat farmer, but being out on a farm, working with my hands, being responsible for only my own actions and relying only on my own efforts… I may not be able to retire, but I wouldn’t want to gouge my brains out through my ear holes before going to a “job” every day, so it is something I could see myself doing until I finally snap and they end up throwing me in a loony bin!

Maybe my family wouldn’t be able to have some of the things we have now, like satellite television or cell phones or Internet or new clothes or gas for the used cars or, you know, food to eat other than goat… but it would all be worth it!  If you can’t make it to the top of the food chain doing something you hate, crawl to the bottom of the food chain raising goats!

Now, I just need some land and a shack to live in.  I’m sure I can pick up some land on the cheap in Nebraska, right?  And I’ll need some starter goats.  Do they sell starter goat kits?  Never mind, I’ll Google it later… while I still have Internet :)  And I just need to convince my family that we would be better off without all of the stupid “conveniences” or modern life. I’ll never be able to provide for my family in the ways I dreamed as a kid, so it’s time to change the dream!

Little Adventurer Rich wants to grow up and get married and have a family and own a home and sell that home and buy a goat farm and raise goats!   Then Little Adventurer Rich wants to lose his mind and get locked up in a “facility” with lots of padded rooms where he will enjoy his final years dreaming of his goats…

.

.

. My Destination photo loonybin_zpsed5e0cec.jpg .

.

.

Finally, a dream I may be able to accomplish…

Tagged with:
Jun 02

A friend of mine recently lost his father-in-law.  Well… he didn’t actually lose his father-in-law.  He knew exactly where his father-in-law was, which happened to be at home dying of cancer.  It’s funny how cancer ravages an individual and leaves tattered survivors behind.  No… not really funny, but, you know, devastating.  Kind of strange how some of our ways of stating things make absolutely no sense, isn’t it?  Why yes — yes it is.  Stinking English language.

So anyway, my friend’s father-in-law retired not that long ago.  Shortly after retiring, he was diagnosed with cancer.  Shortly after being diagnosed, it looked like treatment was working.  Shortly after the prognosis looked positive, the cancer got worse.  Shortly after the cancer got worse, my friend’s father-in-law was given two weeks to live.  A couple of days after being given two weeks to live, the father-in-law died.

The end.

… but this entire scenario has been playing with my head for the weeks that have passed since the father-in-law passed.  And then this week, a nice lady who was not that much older than me had a relatively routine surgery and, due to complications from that surgery, she passed away.  She left behind a loving husband and grown children who now need to find a way to their futures without her.  Of course, she was warned about the dangers of the procedure before she underwent it, but there didn’t seem to be a lot of available options.  Can anyone say, “Life bites”?  She was actually someone outside of my immediate family who had read this blog and thanked me for doing what I do.  She enjoyed it and got a chuckle or two from the experience… and now she is gone.  Well, looks like my dad and my brother are, once again, my sole readers…

I’ve been thinking to myself about what I would do if I knew I had a determined amount of time left.  Would I continue working if I knew I only had a month left to live?  I’d dare say I would not continue working.  I would want to enjoy as much of the last of life as possible.  I’d quit my job and sell as much of my stuff as possible to make my final days an enjoyable memory for the family I’d be leaving behind.  But then… people who are in the end-stages of life-ending disease rarely want to do little more than be as comfortable as possible and die in a timely manner, right?  These people aren’t usually in any shape to tackle that European adventure that they kept saying “some day” to.  So fantasizing about what one would or would not do during the final stages of life is a sick little game that will lead to nothing more than severe disappointment, I’m sure.  And this really got me to thinking.  Aren’t we all, in one form or another, in the final stages of life?  For some of us, the prognosis is decades, for others, weeks, days, hours?  And something can always come along and screw everything up, right?  I wonder how many people who are given weeks to live due to disease die in automobile accidents every day…

We are all dying.

Period.

Dying is the only thing we are assured of in this life.  Death is the only goal that will be reached by every individual on the planet, regardless of race, gender, creed, social status… or whatever.  From the moment we are born, our bodies begin the various functions that will end up using us up and spitting us out.

We are all dying.

So why don’t we act like we are dying?  We have precious little time on this planet, yet most of us still are avoiding the things that we really want to do; the things that, on our deathbeds, will end up being missed opportunities and fill us with regret.  We keep telling ourselves, “Someday, when I have more time,” or, “Someday, when I have more money.”  Wake up, folks.  More time and money are things we may never have.  If you have stuff you want to get done, you better get to getting after it.  You could be dead tomorrow, so don’t delay.  Think of all of the wonderful things we as a species could accomplish if we started living like our time here is limited.  Think of how few people would be in a job or a relationship that wasn’t fulfilling to them if they started living like they didn’t have eternity to do something with this life… because no one does.  What we accomplish in our short time here is the only shot we get.

Of course, realism always sets in when I start thinking like this.  Gotta put food on the table, right?  Gotta pay them bills.  Gotta put gas in the car.  You can’t just try to do whatever you want with your life without being destroyed by the consequences.  My mind always quickly changes back to: maybe someday when I have more time and money… maybe then I can try to accomplish something enjoyable with my life.  I can make the boredom of everyday life disappear once I have a little more time and money…  Well, I’m coming to the realization that I need to say…

Screw that noise!

This is my life.  Your life is your life.  I have a deep desire to do something I am passionate about with my life… to figure out my purpose and pursue it.

When I was a kid, I used to think that when I grew up and started making money and got a family, that would be when life really began.  Well, having a family is great and gets me through from day to day, but I soon realized that not everyone can make good money.  So, I started thinking that once I can get to retirement, that’s when life really begins.  Of course, to get to retirement at a decent age, you have to make good money (or sacrifice much of the comfort from current life to stick it all away for retirement)… and “good money” isn’t easy to find.  So retirement (if I live to see it…we are all dying, after all), is close to half a lifetime away, and half a lifetime (when you are 42) is way too long to wait for life to begin.

I know that I need to appreciate the little things, or I will prove to the world that I can’t comprehend a platitude.  But focusing on the little things, as fulfilling as that can be, does not seem like a very redeeming purpose.  I know that our purpose is supposed to be God’s purpose for us, but I highly doubt that God’s sole purpose for me on this planet is to appreciate the little things… that just sounds too boring; I would hope that God has given me more talent than that.

The only non-family activity that I do that feels rewarding is volunteering.  Boy Scouts, church, whatever.  Time spent volunteering (as much as I usually dread actually going to do the work) always leaves me feeling fulfilled.  You know, like a job has been well done (whether it actually has or not).  It feels good.  I do not, nor have I ever, felt the same kind of satisfaction working a job.  It’s this whole big Catch-22.  If I could actually make enough money to meet my needs by volunteering, I would probably be semi-satisfied with life.  But if I made money, it wouldn’t be volunteering… it would be a job… and like most jobs, it would probably suck.  So maybe I just need to volunteer more of my free time to find more satisfaction and purpose, but I am usually so drained after 8+ hours of working a job that the last thing I want to do is take more time away from my family than my current level of volunteering already takes.

See… damn it… this is why I should win the stinking lottery:

  • I enjoy volunteering; it leaves me feeling fulfilled.
  • I have financial needs.
  • If I win the lottery, my financial needs would go away.
  • If my financial needs went away, I could spend 8+ hours a day volunteering.
  • By spending 8+ hours of my day volunteering, I would be helping causes that need help and I would feel fulfilled at the end of the day (instead of just too tired to fulfill my current obligations to family and the organizations I volunteer time to).
  • This is a win/win situation.  Nobody loses… so why can’t I win the freaking lottery?!?

I can’t win the lottery because God’s purpose for me isn’t to volunteer all of my free time.  I can dig that.  But if my purpose involves a future of life-draining 8-5s, I most definitely cannot dig that.

“Well, nobody said it was going to be fair!”

Yeah, and nobody asked my opinion before putting me here, so that doesn’t fly.  Thus, the search for purpose continues.

I actually recently read “The On-purpose Person” by Kevin W. McCarthy… and I got excited.  It’s a narrative about a guy (who sounds a lot like me… but who makes a crapload more money than me) who feels purposeless.  Through a series of referrals, the man in the story visits various on-purpose people who volunteers their time to help the man find his purpose and start living his life on-purpose.  Whoa… that sounds pretty cool.  So, I check out an introduction to Kevin McCarthy’s web-based program that helps people find their purposes.  The first lesson was free and didn’t really provide too much useful info.  In order to get the good stuff, you need to pay for the seminar series… and it’s like 200 bucks.  And it sounds like you have to stop having a lot of fun and grow up and stuff, so I’m not exactly sure this program is for me.

“But… in the story, all of those on-purpose people gave their time and advice for free to the man,” I point out.

“But that was a story,” says the voice of reason.

“So, in real life, people aren’t willing to give their time to help others find their purpose?” I ask.

“Of course not,” says the voice of reason.  “In real life, people, including Kevin W. McCarthy have mortgages and life insurance policies and the need to eat.”

“Well,” I say, “real life kinds of sucks when compared to the story.”

“Nobody ever said it was going to be fair,” says the voice of reason.

Sometimes, I hate the voice of reason.  So the search continues.

I’m kind of thinking a more self-sustaining lifestyle may have some rewards…

Tagged with:
Jun 01

I originally started writing this blog to capture my journey through turning 40 and the pain that journey entailed.  I wanted to, at least somewhat humorously, document how much turning 40 sucked.  Well, I turned 40, it did suck, and now here I am at 42 and things get no better.  People always say crap like, “Just give it time, things will get better,” or “At least things can’t get any worse.”  Well, I have come to a realization: people lie.  The only thing my future potentially holds is turning 50; I’m sure that will be a joy ride.

If you are down in the dumps or have a touch of the blues, people say ‘things will get better’ to prevent you from jumping off of a bridge or walking through the local Walmart with your hunting rifle a’blazing or something.  There is no real guarantee that anything is going to get any better.  In fact, things run a pretty substantial risk of getting worse.  Still, you should not jump off of a bridge or take out the entire population of a Walmart (believe it or not, there may actually a few good people in there).

When I start feeling down about the suckiness that life often dishes out, I blog.  It makes me feel better.  It might piss some people off, but then maybe they need to start their own blogs.  A small part of me has always thought that if I sit down and practice writing on a regular basis (i.e. blog), I might improve my writing skills to the level where I can actually making a living writing.

“Why would you want to make a living writing?” you may ask.

I don’t like dealing with people.  Any form of conflict stresses me out to a degree that I can barely function, and you cannot deal with people and avoid conflict.  What really amazes me are people who seem to thrive on conflict.  You know them, the people who can take a completely calm situation and turn it upside down by inserting a touch of drama… which always leads to conflict.  These people need to be locked away on their own island… hey, Total Drama Island!

.

.

.

Photobucket

Good cartoon... I miss it :(

.

.

.

I have not always been like this, but over the last several years, the degree of my anti-social thoughts and feelings has multiplied to the point that I really am pretty miserable a lot of the time.  This is mostly related to time when I am actually earning a living.  At home, and even in the occasional social setting, I am happy and pretty comfortable.  I have tried to think of a job where I would have very little personal contact with people in the realm of the method I use to earn an income, and writing seems to be an excellent choice.  There are additional choices, but none of them seem to fit quite right:

Methamphetamine Manufacturer

Oh sure, making the meth sounds like a great way to make a living.

*You can work at home.

Photobucket

*You make a very high (no pun intended) return on investment.

*All of the simple instructions are easily accessible online.

*The only people you would have to deal with would be your dealers.

*I’ve seen some of the people who make this stuff… you don’t have to be a rocket scientist.

*You are making a product that is in demand and makes people feel better about their miserable lives.

However, if you really look at the consequences of making meth, you find that there may be some drawbacks.

*You can burn down your home.

Photobucket

*Meth may make people feel better, but it has been discovered that it may not be good for them.

Photobucket

*Apparently, making meth is illegal.

*The only people you would have to deal with would be your dealers.

Photobucket

So… meth is out.

Pornography Actor

Okay, so you would have to deal with people, but I’m sure there wouldn’t be much conflict.  Even if there is conflict, who cares?.  Three words: female porn stars! This doesn’t sound like a bad choice…

And then reality sets in…

.

.

.

CPAP

Yeah... no one is going to pay to see that...

.

.

.

Crap!  I think the wife may have an issue with me being in porn… as would God.  Porn  is out.

Let’s see… what are some more jobs that would either be enjoyable or have limited conflict…

Bookstore Owner/Employee

I love books and used to think working in like a Barnes & Nobles would be a blast.  I mean, who in their right mind would be unhappy in a bookstore.  I used to think that way, until I saw some poor information booth employee at Barnes & Nobles get chewed up one side and down the other by some jerkwad who was bent out of shape because the store didn’t have a copy of some obscure philosophy book.  Jerkwad was upset that he would have to wait a couple of days for the store to get in a copy of Larry Fleitzerhinie’s Mans’ Walk on an Impartial Plain of Reason in the Twilight of the Mountains of Contradiction… or something like that.  “What kind of bookstore is this,” Jerkwad yelled.  Seriously… is there not a job on this planet where jerkwads are not present?  So the bookstore idea is out.

Working with Children

I used to work at Discovery Zone (a Chuck E. Cheese-like place with tubes and tunnels and ball pits and video games and birthday parties etc. etc. etc.).  One would think that a fun place like that would be reasonably stress free… but one would be wrong.  Parents become absolute imbeciles  when it comes to the happiness of their children… especially when they are paying for it.  And these imbeciles love to yell at whatever employee is closest to them when their child is for one second not having the ultimate in fun (like the kid just got reprimanded for biting another kid in the butt).

“You have no right to discipline my child, you minimum-wage piece of $@#&!”

Meanwhile, the parent of the child who was bitten is screaming, “You need to keep better control of the kids in here.  I should sue!”

Of course, neither of these parents say a word to each other… let’s just take it all out on the minimum-wage piece of $@#&!

So it is becoming relatively clear at this point that there is no such thing as an enjoyable job… or at least a job that is stress-free.  I understand that stress is supposed to be a good thing in small amounts because it helps us make decisions and whatnot… but I’m getting too old to deal with the stress crap anymore.  You know, if I had the money flowing in that I expected to be making in my “prime income-earning years”, the stress probably wouldn’t get to me as much.  Sounds silly, but it’s true.  If I was making six figures, I think my tolerance for all things stressful would be a little higher because I’d be able to put a sizable amount of that away for retirement and I’d have the knowledge that I would not have to deal with the crap forever.  However, given my current situation, I will be dealing with some sort of crap for every single workday for the rest of my natural life.

Go ahead, say it.  I know there is someone out there who is wanting to say it…

“Suck it up!  Quit your whining and do what you need to do!”

“Nobody ever said life was going to be fair, so shut your mouth and get busy working!”

“People who complain like you need to be thankful they aren’t a starving child in Africa!”

“If you worked as hard as you complained, you’d be making more money!”

“Quit feeling sorry for yourself!  We all gotta deal with it and you don’t hear us complaining, do you?”

Oh my… if I had a nickel for every time I was the recipient of one of these comments, I’d already be able to retire.  I have never stated that I am not thankful for what I have.  I just want more out of life than being a working stiff who begrudgingly works a job until the day he dies.  I think it is best stated by Drake in Nikki Minaj’s song Moment 4 Life:

I’m really tryna make it more than what it is, cuz everybody dies but not everybody lives!”

.

.

.

Photobucket

Apparently, one needs to look like a pink blow-up doll to be living life right?!?

.

.

.

Word!  … does anybody really say “word” anymore?  Yeah, probably not.  I’m kind of out of the loop.  I am 42, after all…

Good gravy – I’m quoting a Nikki Minaj song?!?   ‘Bout time to wrap this post up.

Anywho, writing is about the only job I can think of that would have the limited public contact necessary to eradicate a large portion of the work-related stress from my life.  Of course, I only enjoy writing as a way to bitch.  If I had to write how-to manuals or reviews of laundry soaps or something like that, writing would suck.

So, if anyone knows of a good writing gig that requires a whiny writer who loves to bitch, give me a shout out.  Word!

Tagged with:
Jan 24
Photobucket

There will be random pictures of geeky tech nerd chicks throughout this post. Scientific studies prove men are more likely to read a blog post if there are pictures of sexy geek-chicks associated with it... or, at least I am more likely to read a blog post if there is a picture of a sexy geek-chick associated with it...

I used to be kind of a techie geek.  I liked the newest tech-toys and the hippest websites.  When I worked at Alltel, I was all about the newest, coolest phones.  I was one of the guys that the customers would come to so they could transfer all of their saved crap on their old phone to their new phone (because we didn’t have fancy machines that did that automatically), or set custom MP3 ringtones on phones that weren’t supposed to be able to have custom ringtones, or whatever other crap needed to be done that took a lot of time but didn’t generate any commission.  Also, friends and family, because I worked at a cell phone store, thought I was the be-all, end-all to tech greatness.  I liked being a go-to geek.  Then I started doing actual tech support, and everything changed.

.
.
.

Photobucket

Nothing says geek like a Stormtrooper chick...

.
.
.

I also used to love to read.  I loved being taken away to a life that actually contained adventure by having my imagination stoked by a master wordsmith.  Holding a book, turning the pages, feeling its heft in my hands, knowing that someone had taken months of their time creating this tale just for me… reading was awesome.  I always dreamed of being one of those wordsmiths, creating those tales just for that individual who chose to be carried away by my musings.  I dreamed of having a mass of paper bound together and full of my words with my name embossed on the cover underneath a catchy, deep title like: Whereas Whispers the Will of our Souls, or, Arnklot, Last of the Vampyre Clan of Tillystone. All dreams must come to an end.
.
.
.

Photobucket

Supergirl wannabe... how nerdy is that?

.
.
.

The wife used to be pretty technologically ignorant.  She was anti-smartphone because they were too “fancy”, and she didn’t feel she would ever use all of the “fancy” Internet features on a smartphone.  Still, I was able to convince her to go into a Droid, and she has never looked back.  Her next step was a Kindle.  I was actually against the Kindle (this was after I stopped working at Alltel, and technology had started to lose its appeal to me).

“Books are books, and they can’t be replaced by a stupid e-reader,” I would tell her.

“I still love books,” the wife would say, “it’s just nice to have a whole library in one easy-to-carry device.”

“That’s crap,” I would logically disagree.  “Kindles are stupid.  Only babies have Kindles!”

Whatever,” the wife would say, usually rolling her eyes.
.
.
.

Photobucket

Glasses are uber-tech-geeky...

.
.
.

So the wife got her a Kindle and started getting fancy electronic books.  They were much less expensive than the good old paper books, and she soon had a decent sized collection of crappy e-books on her Kindle.  I was disgusted.

I started to notice that more and more “experts” were predicting the slow demise of the paper book.  Digital books were predicted to be the wave of the future.  I disagreed.

“Who is going to take the time to write a book if they have to sell them on Amazon for 99¢?” I would inquire.

“There are writers out there who have become millionaires selling books on Amazon,” the wife would argue.  “These writer’s would have never even received an offer from a traditional publisher.”

“But, without a traditional publisher, how do you get a paper book made?” I asked.

“Well, they don’t have paper books made,” the wife said.  “They are all digital.”

“That’s stupid,” I would conclude.  “Only baby writers don’t have paper books.”

More eye rolling always followed.  The wife likes to roll her eyes.

Before I knew it, the wife was getting involved in all kinds of reading crap.  She got all wrapped up in Goodreads, and there she found new Facebook discussion groups and whatnot.  She learned more ways to get enjoyment out of her stupid Kindle.  She actually was fast becoming an expert on e-readers and e-books in general.

This past Christmas, both of my boys and the wife all got Kindle Fires.  Now, all three of them are supporting making authors struggle more by buying e-books instead of the good old traditional paper books.  How in the crap are you supposed to get a signed copy of an e-book?  You can’t, that’s how!  Stupid Kindle.  Stupid Amazon.  Stupid Nook.  Stupid Barnes & Noble (whose brick and mortar stores are on the verge of extinction thanks to stupid e-readers).

The wife was recently talking about how e-reader experts will probably be in pretty high demand in the near future.  Traditional bookstores, libraries, and even many businesses will have a need for an on-staff e-reader expert.  That sounds like a job I would like.  That seems like a job the wife has positioned herself for.  Stupid technology.  After dealing with tech crap all day at work, the last thing in the world I want to do is submerge myself in technology after hours.  I watch stupid scary movies or find some other mind-killing activity to help me get to sleep: things that in no way will help me transition into a fun job (if there is such a thing).
.
.
.

Photobucket

All Orientals are tech-geeky, right?

.
.
.

I don’t really read much anymore.  I used to read because I thought reading might be a good way to improve my writing skills.  Now, I have given up on my dream being a writer.  I won’t have my name embossed on the cover of a stinking Kindle, and nobody is going to let me sign their stupid Nook.  Selling e-books for 99¢ isn’t going to lead to a full-time gig (… at least not with any of the hogwash I would end up writing), and who in his or her right mind would write seriously just for fun (I have this stinking blog for that).

Technology kills dreams.  Technology erodes real human contact.  Technology is destroying the world.  My wife is now the technology expert in our house.  And although I work with stupid Internet technology all day, I am thankful that, technologically, I’m an idiot…

Normally, I would end my post here with this profound thought, but I’m feeling kind of bad.  Here I have written a kind of stupid post (yeah, so what’s new?) and interlaced it with attractive women with a more-than-necessary amount of skin showing for the sole purpose of getting guys to stay on my site longer and increase my stats.  I may be a little geekier than I let on.  This is not fair to the women who visit my blog: the wife and my sister.  In order to make amends, I offer the following for the ladies:

.

.

.

Photobucket

ooh la la, can anyone say "hottie"?

.

.

.

Photobucket

Beefcake City!

.

.

Photobucket

Finally, that Oriental-thing goes both ways, doesn't it, ladies? :)

.

Tagged with:
Oct 21

Fall

A few years back, I had a job that required me to spend a large portion of my time behind the wheel of a truck.  Early mornings were common, and I’d drive a lot of miles before returning home.  One memory stands out in my head above all others from that period of my life, and I believe that memory helped shape my current attitude toward the community I currently call home.

The day I remember must have been really close to this time if year.  The leaves had mostly turned, early mornings demanded a slight scraping of frost from the windshield, and the jacket I wore to brace against the frigid morning breeze rested on the seat beside me before noon.  Fall in Nebraska is almost like two seasons in one: the pleasant, warm time while the sun brightens the day, and the crappy, cold time when the sun, too, has had its fill of Nebraska.  On this particular day, I had left at around 3:00 am for some early morning business in Kimball.  The business in Kimball didn’t take too awful  long, and I found myself driving back into Scottsbluff at around 11:00am.  As I drove north on Highway 71 and drove over the bridge spanning the meek North Platte River, I couldn’t help but notice all of the leaves that littered the side of the road.  The area around the river is one of the few places where you can find a multitude of trees all in one spot in western Nebraska, and a significant wind must have blown through the previous night.  I can not remember a time before nor after that day where I have seen an exodus of leaves along the roadside of that magnitude. I was so impressed that I actually pulled over to the side of the road and just stared at the leaves.

A light breeze blew, and the leaves tumbled and twirled along the embankment.  Brown leaves, yellow leaves,  and even some green leaves and the occasional red leaf — leaves of all shape and size, though mostly cottonwood leaves — bustled along in an attempt to find the final resting place where decay could completely consume them.  The leaves fascinated me.  They were just a bunch of stinking leaves, but they were beautiful in their own way.  As I watched the leaves, I realized that they had all come to this stretch of road in Scotts Bluff County, probably through no choice of their own (I don’t think leaves have “choice”, do they?) either to die or because they were already dead.

While watching the leaves from my truck by the bridge over the North Platte River, I remembered a man I had recently seen at Walmart.  A funny looking man standing back in the dairy section caught my eye.  From a distance, the man appeared to be quite well-off.  He appeared to be dressed in a nice suit with shiny shoes and a stunning little bowler hat.

“How odd for someone to be dressed like that in Walmart,” I thought to myself, “and it’s not even Sunday.”

As I pushed my shopping cart closer to the man, his clean, crisp image began to unravel.  The man’s suit was not really very nice at all; it was haggard and stained… and it smelled… smelled bad.  His shoes (although it was obvious that a great deal of care had gone into their shining) barely had any soles, his right toe peeked out from not only the right shoe but the right sock as well, and the frayed laces appeared to be just getting the job done of keeping the shoes on his feet.  The white sweat stain that circled the man’s bowler added to the appearance of age that the runs in the bowler’s fabric created.  The old man seemed to be in a hurry to find something.  As I passed him, however,  he offered a sincere, toothless smile as he gently touched the brim of his hat… then he bustled on his way.

The memory of the man faded, and once again I watched the leaves — the leaves whose sole remaining purpose was to become fertilizer for the next generation — the leaves whose final resting place may be a stretch of road in the panhandle of Nebraska.

My mind wandered again, this time to the overweight population of Scottsbluff.  In 2009, Quality Health ran an article titled “10 Fattest Cities in America.”  Scottsbluff (not a community that graces many “top ten” lists) with 31% of its population classified as obese, came in at number seven.  Seventh fattest city in America… there’s something to take pride in.  See what a little corn-fed beef and buttered corn on the cob can do for a community?  And don’t forget about the wonderful high fructose corn syrup!  Corn… it’s what for dinner… and it leads to obesity!  Maybe people here just don’t know how to take care of themselves.  Maybe people here just don’t care.  Maybe people in the panhandle of Nebraska are just trying to tumble and twirl through life and get what little pleasure they can along the way.  A lot of pleasure can be found in a couple of Big Macs with a large fries and a Coke.

As I continued to watch the bustling leaves, I started to get cold.  The leaves I watched put on quite a show, but I started to realize that they really weren’t as beautiful as I originally thought.  I began to suspect that, upon closer inspection, the leaves might actually be kind of gnarly — full of bug bites and patches of disease and torn flesh and broken dreams.  I thought of the people that I know who have a bachelor’s degree in this or a master’s degree in that, and they are stocking shelves at a grocery store or working as para-educators  or slinging a construction hammer.  The leaves weren’t searching for a fulfilling life there along the side of the road in Scottsbluff, NE; they were there because they were dying or dead.

My appetite for watching the leaves gone,  I  suddenly just wanted to go home.  Still chilly, I slid on my jacket from the seat beside me as I started the truck and bustled toward home with the dawning realization that I probably had a lawn full of leaves in need of raking…

Tagged with:
Sep 28

Are you an optimist?  Do you like to look on the bright side?  Do you see the glass as half-full instead of half-empty?  Do you tend to tell friends who are going through hard times things like, “Don’t worry, things will get better,” or, “Smile, at least things can’t get any worse”?  I’m sorry, but things don’t always “get better,” and things can always “get worse.”  In fact, I recommend that if you are going through hard times, you should not only not expect things to get better… but plan on them getting worse!  I’m a pessimist, and I’m proud of it.

Being a pessimist isn’t always easy.  Sometimes, we too let a little bit of hope crowd its way into our daily lives.  However, once that hope is shattered by the lead bullet of reality (hollow-point-style), we are quickly reminded why we chose to be a pessimist in the first place.  That’s right, I wrote “chose”, because being a pessimist or an optimist is initially a choice.  Over the course of a lifetime, different experiences form our attitudes and opinions, and we can chose how to experience those… well… experiences.  My belief is that most of us start out pretty naturally optimistic.  Our parents take care of us.  We always have food in our tummies.  When we get a boo-boo, there is someone to kiss it.  Santa Claus is going to bring those presents.  The tooth fairy leaves some pocket change for our lost teeth. Our friends are going to be happy to see us after a summer apart when school starts in the fall.  When we make a mistake, an apology is all that it is going to take to make things all better again.  And then reality sets in.  Over the summer, maybe we put on a little weight and now have a belly (yes… I’m a fatty), or maybe we developed a case of acne.

.

.

.

Rich as a kid...

Don't call me "pizza face"... that just makes me hungry for pizza!

.

.

.

Our friends may still be happy to see us, but they are making fun of us as well.  The reunion with those friends we hadn’t seen over the summer isn’t as enjoyable as we had imagined it would be.  Or maybe we studied really hard for that final exam and believed we were going to ace it… and then we barely pass because the stupid teacher made it an essay test instead of multiple choice… and she didn’t care for the way we worded our answers… and our GPA plummeted.  Or maybe you ask that nice, pretty fellow-junior girl to the prom, and she tells you that she won’t go with you because she is expecting that tall, popular, good looking senior boy to ask her.  Or perhaps you apply for that dream job only to be told that you aren’t as outgoing as the person needed to fill the position… and that stupid optimism leads to more hurt and pain than necessary if we had just been more realistic in our expectations.  We slowly learn that pessimism is synonymous with avoiding pain.

My belief is that people who have more positive experiences in life tend to be more optimistic.  For people whom life isn’t quite as “fair”, pessimism is the road more often chosen.  There are those who would argue that optimists attract more positivity because of their optimism, but I would disagree.  I believe an optimist is more optimistic because, through physical appearance, family wealth, station in life, or plain and simple luck, they tend to have more positive experiences.  Of course this is not all inclusive, nor is it, in my strange little belief system, a steadfast rule.  There are people who have a picture-perfect life who tend to be pretty negative, and there are people whom life has completely screwed who are able to keep their chins up… but these are the exceptions and not the rules.    However, as a basic, general rule, I believe I am right.

It always kills me when the pretty person who comes from the upper-middle class family says stuff like, “If you believe in yourself, you can accomplish anything,” or, “I don’t understand negative people…”  Of course you don’t understand negative people!  It’s easy to have sky-high self-esteem when the masses in general find you attractive and you and your family aren’t worrying about how they are going to pay for your college.  The world population in general treats people it finds attractive different than it treats the rest of us.  Don’t believe me?  A middle-aged, overweight woman in a muumuu is broken down on the side of the road.

.

.

.

Pessimist

Please, won't someone help me? My belly has fallen and it can't get up!

.

.

.

Along that same stretch of road, a twenty-something of better-than-average appearance wearing short-shorts is broken down as well.

.

.

.

Optimist

Do you really think she is going to have any trouble getting free roadside assistance?

.

.

.

Who do you think is going have more offers of help from passersby (and I’m guessing that this would be consistently higher for both men and women stopping).   Which one of these stranded ladies do you think tends to be more optimist… and rightfully so.  Nobody said that life was going to be fair… but it seems to be less unfair when you’re good looking (or so it seems from a relatively unattractive person’s viewpoint).

Let’s move on to success.  Who do you think is going to have a better shot at a career in sales: an attractive gentleman who has a aura of financial success

.

.

.

Dude

Buy from me... because I obviously make a lot of money doing this.

.

.

.

… or the poor, ugly schmoe who, based on appearances, you would be afraid to leave your small children in a room alone with.

.

.

.

Perv

Hey... I got some candy in my left-front pocket. Why don't you reach in there and grab yourself a little piece!

.

.

.

Which of these gentlemen do you believe would be more optimistic?  Of course it’s the rich-looking dude… that’s how life works.  This is why the wealthy constantly find themselves on the cover of the local newspaper.  There are articles about how this rich person is doing this, and that rich person is doing that.  One local rich guy is going to be on TV on the Speed channel because he is rich and has fancy cars.  Do you think this guy is more of an optimist or pessimist?  I, on the other hand, am not rich (well, I am “Rich”… I’m just not “rich”… stupid name).  I’ve never been on the cover of the local newspaper, even though I did write a relatively funny article about technology one time.  I work relatively hard and have what I consider to be a strong work ethic.  In my 42-years of life, I have never once called in sick to a job.  I’d have to be puking my guts out with a brain-searing fever to consider calling in sick.  Luckily, I don’t get sick very often.  When I do get sick, I have never felt that I was sick enough to not be of some value to my employer.  Want to know what my years of working through my mild illnesses has garnered me?  Absolutely NOTHING… except boiling my blood pressure whenever I have to take-up the slack of someone who has called in sick.  And the pessimism simmers below the surface all the while… eroding my hope and will into the darkest abyss.

.

.

.

Dark Abyss

Don't know what this exactly has to do with the "darkest abyss," I just love this picture. Goth stuff is cool...

.

.

.

Pessimism is a defense mechanism.  Like I stated earlier, we all pretty much start out as optimists.  It’s only after (usually) years of unmet expectations and irreconcilable defeats that we develop our pessimism.  When you expect a positive outcome, and that outcome is negative instead of positive, it hurts.  A few of these defeats are natural and build character… or something psychobabblish like that.  After a few, the pain involved with the disappointment of failure becomes more powerful than any character-building gains you may receive.  We begin to expect the worst.  In most situations, the pessimist is the voice of restraint (or, as I like to think of it, “reason”); the one who has thought-out all of the possible negative outcomes to any given process or procedure.  The pessimist isn’t prone to “dream”, because “dreams” in the past have meant painful disappointment.  To refrain from hope is to avoid the torture interwoven with that hope’s demise.  And guess what… every once in awhile, things don’t turn out as poorly as we expected they would… and that is a gracious surprise!  Like around 17-years ago when I asked my wife to marry me.  Do you think I had any hope that she would say yes?  Of course not!  I expected a resounding “NO WAY”, and then I would have been free to get on with my miserable life.  However, she surprised me by saying “yes” and it was a pleasant surprise indeed.  If I had actually been expecting it and she had said yes, it wouldn’t have been a surprise, nor would it have meant as much.  So, by avoiding the optimistic risk-taking that so often ends in failure and despair, we actually glean a gleam of happiness when our negativity is proven wrong.  It is better to be wrong and happy about being wrong than it is to be wrong amongst the shattered remains of a precious dream.  Pessimists don’t dream much.

The problem with being a pessimist is that we don’t dream much.  Sometimes, in order to find some sort of value in this life, we need to dream.  Often, after decades of having giving-up on all dreams, the pessimist forgets how to dream.  This isn’t necessarily bad, since dreams so often lead to disappointment.  However, at times, the pessimist may find that a dream is something he or she may want to work towards making come true.  We used to have the choice to be optimistic or pessimistic in any given situation.  After so much time passing with pessimism working so well for us, we forget how to be positive.  We forget how to believe in ourselves or others.  We still have a choice, but we have forgotten how or lost the tools necessary to follow a dream with a positive attitude.  We can’t see the glass as half-full.  We don’t really even see it as half-empty anymore.  Now, we believe that because the glass isn’t full to the brim, it’s not even worth drinking… and through our stubbornness we run the risk of dehydration.  The choice is still there, but the pain that used to be experienced by being an optimist has reached legendary proportions in our memories, and it is a very difficult choice to make.  So, we usually continue along in our pessimistic ways with the occasional happy surprise of being wrong.  And we hate optimists.

We are all equal in the eyes of God, and He loves us all equally as His children.  Sometimes, I’m sure, He has to wonder what exactly we are thinking when we do stupid stuff, but He still loves us.

.

.

.

Jesus has a sense of humor
.

.

.

However, in the eyes of man, the pretty people with the money rule and find themselves with the self-confidence necessary to be optimistic on a day-to-day basis… which leads to less misery in this realm.  I wish I had been born with good looks and money, but I’m afraid I posses neither.  My only hope for a touch of optimism while here on earth is the coming zombie apocalypse.  My hope is that when the zombies attack, they will go for the rich, pretty people first.  It’s only fair that those who have had people falling all over them because of their looks and wealth in this life also have the brain-starved zombies falling all over them during the apocalypse.

.

.

.

Die, optimist!

Die, optimist... DIE!

.

.

.

Then again… nobody said life was fair…

Tagged with:
Sep 13

So about six months ago, I go to our Quick Care clinic to get a referral for a sleep study.  I leave the appointment with the referral… and a brand-spanking new prescription for blood pressure medication.  Stinking people looking out for my health.  Anyway, so I had a six-month prescription, and that prescription was about to run out, so I figured that I better go see a real doctor about my blood pressure.

Now, when I went to Quick Care, my blood pressure was like 170/130.  I’ve been tracking it ever since, and although there are times when it spikes in the 160/110 range (which is pretty much any time I get pissed off… which, as you can imagine, is almost daily), it’s usually in the 140s/90s.  Still high, but better, no?

I make an appointment with an actual real doctor (figure I’m about at the age where I need a family physician).  The appointment comes, I go to see the doctor, and my stupid blood pressure is still high.  It’s 148/98.  So, the doctor wants to double the dosage of the lisinopril that I’m on, and I’m fine with that.  Aside from a constant nagging cough, I don’t really suffer any side-effects.  Then the doctor tells me that he wants to check my cholesterol.  Crap.  I have no doubt that my cholesterol is high, and I’m sure that I’m going to have to fork out money for a prescription for that crap every month too.  The nurse sticks a needle in my arm and draws a couple of vials of blood.  I’m amazed at how dark the blood is… almost black… and I’m thinking to myself that may be part of my problem.  With all of the tons of fat that I have eaten in my 41-years of life (’cause, damn it, it tastes good), the crap has actually morphed into actual oil in my system.  Of course my blood pressure is going to be high with Pennzoil 10w30 running through my veins, and I’m way past the 3 month/3000 mile mark.  Can’t I just get a stinking oil change and a lube job?.

I heard from the doctor’s office today.  Low and behold, I have high cholesterol.  SURPRISE!  They called in a prescription for some statin-thingie to Walgreens, and as of tomorrow, I’ll be medicated for my condition.  Possible side effects are muscle cramps, drowsiness, and liver damage.  They recommend taking it before bed so that the side effects are less noticeable.  The drowsiness thing happening while I’m sleeping makes sense.  However, being awoken in the middle of the night with a charlie horse doesn’t sound very pleasant, and I’m sure my wife would agree with me on that.  As far as the liver damage part goes, I’m kind of hoping to avoid that.  I guess if I have liver failure or something, having that happen while I’m asleep might be a plus?!?

Why is everything that tastes good bad for you (and if someone tries to tell me that steamed broccoli or broiled fish “tastes good”… I may punch him or her in the lying, filthy little mouth)?  “Everything in moderation,” you may say, but I would reply that moderation sucks.  Stupid common sense.  If I’m stuck in the Craphandle of Nebraska with nothing to do and no real future worth caring about, I want to be able to eat what I want when I want.  Eating is one of the very few pleasures I have… and now it just happens to be killing me.

AARGH!

Apparently, high cholesterol makes one very pirate-like?

With the history of high blood pressure and heart disease that infests my family tree, I figured all of this was coming.  I just hoped that maybe I was going to be the branch that could remain healthy.  I’m telling you, optimism in all shapes, colors and sizes, leads to nothing but disappointment, which is why I usually do such a wonderful job of avoiding it.

Okay, so here’s the Catch-22.   The potential side effects of the statin-thingie don’t sound very pleasant.  So, I figure I need to lose about 20 to 30 pounds and start eating gross crap, which doesn’t sound very fun.  Then, when I’m all sickly skinny and eating leaves and twigs, there is still a chance that I will need to remain on cholesterol medication.  Stupid genetics.  So, do I just let the doctor medicate the hell out of me and potentially destroy my liver (a problem that may never come to be… look at me, the stinking optimist) while I continue to enjoy one of the few simple pleasures I have in life: eating good food?  Or, do I give up one of the few simple pleasures that I can experience in the Craphandle of Nebraska in an effort to extend my life so that I can potentially live out an extended life in the Craphandle of Nebraska with no simple pleasures?  And even if I give up the simple pleasure, there is still the chance that I will need to remain on the liver-destroying medication, so I may actually give up the simple pleasure and still die of liver failure.  Sounds pretty much like a lose-lose-lose situation to me.  There… now I’m sounding a little more like the pessimist that I know and dislike an awful lot of the time.

So, now I have a doctor.  He wants to see me again after about 30 days on the current medications to measure my progress.  I should be proud of myself for taking some responsibility for my health and trying to be there for my family’s future, right?  But all I can think about is how I’m 41… and it is just going to be a matter of time before Mr. Dr. is going to be thinking that he needs to be sticking his finger up my butt.  Seriously… if I’m falling apart this much in my 40s, what bright, shiny stars can I expect in my 50s… and beyond?  Well, with the Dr. seemingly intent on destroying my liver, I may not have to worry about it at all…

Tagged with:
preload preload preload