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Home from the Jeopardy trip, and the afterglow is STILL epic. My episode drops January 22, 2016, for the record...
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My doctor put the fear of (deity/deities of choice here) in me a year ago today (August 1, 2005) about the high risk I was running of developing Type 2 diabetes. I was ready to get into an argument with him at the time (and a nasty one at that), but I actually took the time to listen to him about some stuff he'd been warning me about more than a year earlier - changing diet and adding regular exercise to the mix.

I also managed to keep the appointment he arranged the following week with a nutritionist from the local hospital - and I was glad I did! She gave me tips and dietary advice I could RELATE to, and (since the number of chins I had in recent photos told their own story) actually wanted to take - reducing portions, dropping the white refined starches and sugars where possible, and adding more actual fruits and vegetables to my diet, while keeping the meat (but choosing leaner cuts).

So, armed with this knowledge, I began my walk (literally, since that's been my most frequent exercise) back toward health, and back toward being able to face myself in the mirror.

After a month or so, I was punching new holes in my belts.

After two months, people were recognizing the changes in my face and my physique.

At three months, when I went back to my doctor, he gave me the rundown of what my efforts had given me (noticeably lower blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol), and what they had cost me (29 pounds, with around 10 more lost since then - I was already back under 200 pounds and didn't realize it, since I still rarely weigh myself!)

I haven't cried at each of these little milestones, but I've wanted to... not out of pain, or mourning (although other family members' past struggles were clearly on my mind throughout), but rather crying from joy, and from the satisfaction that I lost weight that I seriously needed to lose for the maintenance of my good health, and used no surgery, gimmick products or activities to achieve that goal.


Jun. 29th, 2006 11:14 pm
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It felt truly like summer today...
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Never read his books, but maybe I should...

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Went to the (always gluttonous) Minneapolis GLBT Pride celebration over the weekend... drove away happy for the reasons associated with seeing old friends and lovers and others again - all I'll say for now.
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Got weighed properly for the first time since August at my doctor's office earlier this week - a 29-pound loss has me down to 197 pounds (Don't worry, there's still more than a handful!), and I'm very happy. Also, my blood sugar is down to a much more acceptable level (more pre-diabetic than diabetic) as well.

I like the changes I've made so far, and I want to keep it up - when they tell you to up the exercise and make those changes to your diet, by all means do it! People who really love you will thank you for showing a positive example... and you'll feel better, too.
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Life is hard work! There, I said it.

Trying to start getting to sleep earlier again (after getting amild chewing-out by my boss for a month or so of frequent lateness; he won't write me up, but he made it clear that getting my shit together in general wouldn't hurt!), and adjusting to trading off some responsibilities in exchange for others. As if I needed another reminder that I need to plan ahead on a regular basis...

In better news, a writer friend that I had lost contact with until I found a copy of a book of his over the summer finally replied to my email (If you're reading, thanks Kirk! I'll get back to you soon.)
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We got back from a dizzying, joyous, wild week at MMF last night about 10:30. It was enough time to lose my mind, get it back, and get a fierce haircut (all gone). The vegetarian cuisine was toooo good for the effort (Not a bad bunch of meals - although I skipped a questionable-looking eggplant and cashew casserole twice on Sunday night, the second time when it was mistakenly served as dessert.), and the company I was keeping - some distinguished gentlemen I've known for at least five years in a few cases - was really good company.

I also took some steps to address some unresolved (and uncomfortable) issues from my personal and Festival histories, and I'd like to think I made some positive steps with each of those issues, and the people related to them.  Coming out of Festival, so much seems possible, and so many happy memories seem to be colliding inside my mind all at once...

The oddly ritualistic haircut I received to the reading of Dr. Seuss' "Oh, The Places You'll Go!".

The auction at which I ended up showing off items, a la Barker's Beauties.

The arguments, followed by making up, with John and a few others (lubricated with my tears, among other substances).

A "no-talent" show that took on lounge act proportions.

The pretty fireworks.

The musk of many men in a hot, humid setting.

The refreshing sounds of slightly twangy (and not-so-twangy) accents not caught up in a red-state/blue-state dichotomy.

The discovery that even a recovering hoodrat like myself can exercise hippie sensibilities and love doing so.

The reminders that I am someone much admired, and maybe I need to treat myself like it.  Ditto for the rest of you.


Jul. 21st, 2005 09:02 am
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"I will expand the little bubble of my joy. I will keep puffing at it with the breath of my concentration until it spreads all over my face, into my heart, throughout my entire body and mind, and over the Ocean of Infinity that is hidden in my consciousness."

I guess that describes how I feel on this first full morning of my Midwest Men's Festival. John and I arrived yesterday afternoon around 4:00 after 9-1/2 hot hours in my poorly air-conditioned Ford Escort. Both of our iPods were a decent distraction from the water weight lost on the trip.

Almost as soon as we arrived, the love and admiration hit to the point of being overwhelming at times. It turns out that a request I made was going to be answered, if the smiles of (I won't mention names just yet) when we first laid eyes on each other were any indication. I think a good time might be had. Falling asleep once the temperatures dropped suitably was less of a problem than I thought given the humidity (even though I didn't reach the tent until 12:30 or so).

Today began with John sucking and groping major parts of me, after which I went back to sleep, baking as the sun became more prominent and the temperature incrementally rose along. I'm up now, after having read part of another chapter of Augusten Burrows Dry: A Memoir - funny book so far, in a way that the word "tragicomic" was made for - and now I'm about to get up and toilet, shower, and whatever else comes up.
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Seven more days until my Men's Festival trip!
The mere writing of that first sentence has upped my mood considerably, as has the return of John's friend Susan to southwest Wisconsin, albeit temporarily (She's the sweet soul with whom John and I spent Memorial Day weekend on her new spread in North Carolina. She's taking care of some business related to the quickly-closing Wisconsin chapter of her life, and also visiting for a very special fireworks display this coming weekend in the nearby town of Rewey, Wisconsin.)

Got the refrigerant recharged for my car's air conditioner today, and got a moderate increase in the effectiveness - it seems the compressor might be on its last legs. Lovely.

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When I got back from lunch, I think I may have walked into the middle of a conversation between my supervisor and the general manager that maybe I shouldn't have been present for. It may not have directly involved me at all, but let's just say it was a workplace subject that had me rattled at the mere mention.

But enough about that. John and I had some quite alright times (despite a couple of petty, loud arguments) at the Gay Pride March in Chicago (where they actually let the politicians march before the Dykes on Bikes - can you say "sacrilege," boys and girls? Anyway, we got to have breakfast with John's beautiful, young friend Sean, and that alone was worth the trip!) and Summerfest in Milwaukee (Robert Randolph and the Family Band tore up a side stage on July 4th!! All that skill, and he's a Mets fan, too.). Add the Men's Festival to that formula, and it could actually be a nice summer for a change...

I still can't believe a took a 30-minute walk along the bike trail in these bitch-heel (practically!) shoes!
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Growing up with parents and other relatives who never really tried to bring anything other than conflict into each other's lives, I always automaticallyassumed that everybody else's circle of family and friends and such got along better. Living in a small town these past few years has brought more than a few challenges to that assumption, since most of John's and my friends seem to have segments of the community about whom they frequently have some less-than-pleasant things to say. John does it, too - after all, living in a place for 30 years produces those kind of relationships (and relationship breakdowns).

Last Saturday showed that "rule" and one of its numerous exceptions. The rule, in my estimation, was heading up to Spring Green with John for a graduation party for two of his nieces - one from eighth grade, one from high school. John's family always seemed like they got along... not robotically well, but well enough to ride some rough shit and still be able to be civil to each other, and anybody brought into the family. Friends and family all around, and (even though the food was real good this time) a good time was had by all who attended (It didn't hurt that there was a Cubs game on throughout, followed by a tape of a school play, "The Three-Piggy Opera," featuring the oldest of the Greenwood great-grandchildren as the Wolf.).

Contrast that with the Fire Department steak feed that evening back in Point. Things went well; we got our dinner and all. Some older lady came up to say hi to John; he said, "Hi, Gerda" and that would seem to have been nothing special. On the way back to the car, he told me who the woman was, and explained why he didn't want to introduce me (a cascade of personal beefs, some related to the theater group in town, some related to the woman's daughter and son-in-law; I only knew the son-in-law, and let's just say he doesn't think highly of John and me being a couple.). I asked him for some details (my inner gossip-hound!), and let's just say I got more than I asked for, as well as another excuse to ask John what it is about his circle of friends and their concentric circles that makes falling out with each other so damn easy.

I wonder what other rhetorical questions are still out there, just waiting for fools like me to act like they have real, concrete answers?
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A Monday off from work - yayyyyyyy!! First, wash two weeks' worth of dishes, then laundry, then...


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