Inferior Imitator

ep·i·gone n. A second-rate imitator or follower, especially of an artist or a philosopher.

Monday, August 27, 2007

I blogged too soon Saturday. About 7:30ish, I got cold, and my body absolutely rebelled. So I guess I learned something new about this stupid condition, even if I do everything right, major temperature changes will mess with me just as bad. So Sunday night, when I started to cool down, I put on a robe and it worked out okay. It was really rough Sunday morning, though, having to get up and get going after puking and suffering that horrible headache the night before. This shit is really starting to affect my quality of life. I wonder if I can still sue Nash Finch?

But I passed, and now I still have to get my helmet and my license before I can start riding (there's no helmet law in Iowa, but I'm not stupid). They told us that right now, the Iowa DOT is only doing random driving tests for people with birthdays on the 10th, 20th, and 30th days of the month, but October 1st, it'll switch to my birthday, so I'll definitely make sure to get it done before then. I'll still have to take the written test, so I'll have to review the Iowa material before doing so, since some of the terminology between the course and the DOT is different.

The class was definitely worth taking. I learned so much that would have taken me ages and more than a dash of courage to learn otherwise. We learned on smaller bikes than mine (Honda Rebels with 250cc, the step down from the Shadow that I bought, which is 600cc), which also helped. So I'll have to practice everything I learned on my bike, so I can feel comfortable. I'm still not entirely comfortable with doing everything I learned, so a lot of practice will be in order before I feel like I can do any real riding or any long trips or anything. Or passengers. It's amazing how many people want to go for rides with me, even my boss half-jokingly asked this morning. The only thing I have to say is that you may want to hold off on that for a while, especially not having watched me ride at all. If you had seen me even yesterday, you might have second thoughts.

My attitude is that I'm going to take the rest of this riding season to concentrate on learning how to ride. I've got the basics, and now I need practice. It's been a long time since I learned how to drive a car, but this feels the same way. It's a whole different attitude, a whole different skill set, a whole different set of instincts I have to develop. Once I feel more comfortable with that, then I can really ride on a regular basis. I think I'm really going to enjoy this journey.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

I am so wiped out. There was four hours of classroom instruction last night, and today we spent most of the day on bikes. Learning to start, stop, shift, and turn. We really lucked out on the weather: the incessant rain has stopped (and my basement is now mostly dry - I finally borrowed Doug's Shop Vac to try and dry things up, and discovered a hole in the floor where water was bubbling up. No wonder it took so long to mop up that puddle!) and it's cooled off and the humidity is down. I stayed pretty well hydrated, and I'm feeling pretty normal. Still tired, but my head isn't pounding and I still feel like eating something for supper, so A-okay in my book.

This was in my garage when I got home last night. Thanks, Lew!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The excitement never ends!

If I had won the Powerball last night, I think the overload would have killed me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

My brother is going to go take a look at a bike for me tonight. I'm giddy. It's exactly what I'm looking for (except I really like the orange paint, but it's not like that's a deal breaker), and close to my price range. I can link to it, since I found it on Craig's List: Pretty. I'm sending my brother to look at it because one, he's a lot closer, and two, having two guys show up on bikes (he's taking his buddy Aaron with him) gives a lot more credibility and bargaining power than a giddy girl. I've had plenty enough condescension for being a girl in a man's world this month, thank you very much. I went to Scheel's to find me some new work boots since mine fell apart last winter. The sales guy was giving me almost enough shit that I was going to walk out of there. Suggesting I look in the women's hunting boots, and asking if I really wanted a steel toe. He finally asked me what project I was working on, and when I told him I was replacing a worn-out pair, he finally realized I was serious.

At any rate, I'm not an expert on bikes in any means, though I mean to learn mine. I know Lew will get me a good price on a good bike, even if it's not this one. And I'm okay with conceding the negotiations in this case. Kinda like I was happy to let Dad find my truck for me. It's something that he likes to do anyway, and something that he could do for me that I feel comfortable in accepting. I hate having my parents pay for stuff for me - I tried to give Mom a check for my share of the Chris Isaak trip, and she mailed it back to me, "ABSOLUTELY NOT!". I still don't know if I'm okay with that, I may just try and give it back some other way.

In the meantime, Josh and Chelsea and I are all taking the motorcycle training course at Kirkwood this weekend. They bought Randal's bike off him before he left, so they're getting all learned up, too.


Update: Lew says the bike is practically brand new, so he made an offer on it. The seller is going to talk it over with his wife, and call Lew back later tonight. He hasn't had many people look at it in the month it's been up for sale, so I'm cautiously hopeful.

Update 2: It's mine! Squeee!

Monday, August 20, 2007

I'm trying a new program on my treadmill: it's one where it monitors your heartrate, and changes the speed and elevation to keep your heartrate within a pre-programmed range for a certain period of time. So, if I program that I want my heatrate to be at 170 bpm for 30 minutes, it will give me warm up time to get up to 165, then for 30 minutes, it will speed up when my heartrate goes below 160, and slow down when it gets above 180. Slow and steady seems to be working pretty well for me, usually I push myself too hard and then make myself sick.

I'm thinking about limiting my TKD workouts for this reason. I need to practice, of course, but do my cardio at home, and spend more classtime teaching. I may talk to Ashton about the possibility.

Friday, August 17, 2007

I got a recall letter for my truck in the mail yesterday. Seems it's likely to blow up any minute. See what happens when you pay off your auto loan? Let's just cross our fingers that it doesn't blow up with me in it before I can take it in to get it fixed.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Thought Roundup

I really need to stop looking at the balance of my 401(k). I've lost everything I've made this year in the last two weeks, and it's really depressing.

Why is it so freakin' difficult to find a retail price on prescription drugs? I want to look into switching to that new birth control pill where you don't have to have your period at all, and all I want to know is about how much it costs. Ridiculous!

I have a $5 coupon at for ordering Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows that I need to use yet this month, and I'm having a difficult time deciding what to buy. Half of my wish list is pre-order items, and the second half I'm having a grand old time trying to buy for cheap on eBay. It's the thrill of the chase! I'll take votes.

Thank God the heat wave is over, for now. It was getting so I was getting heat exhaustion just thinking about how oppressive it was outside. I woke up the other night, and my head was sweaty. Just my head. It was really weird. Anyway, I'll take rain over heat any day.

The Bread Garden had spinach salad with fruit and raspberry vinagrette as an option today. It wasn't quite as good as The Best Salad Ever, but it was close. Yum!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

I'm in trouble. A new sushi place opened up in the mall across from my office, Sushi Kicchin. Today I tried their yellow tail and the unagi, and my tummy is so very happy. I can usually keep away from eating too much sushi because the price is more than I want to pay, but this stuff is so reasonable, I may be keeping them open all by my lonesome.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

I forgot to make this post last month.

On July 25, Iowa's 133rd Infantry Battalion came home from Iraq after a nearly 22-month deployment. Among them was my "adopted brother" Nile. Nile lived with my family for a period of time after I had left for college, so I wasn't as close to him as the rest of my family. But he is part of the family, even if not offically, so they were there to greet him when he came home.

Nile left for training in Mississippi in September of 2005, and on Christmas leave before his January deployment, he married his fiance Jen. His daughter Eve was born in May of 2006, and he got to meet her on a couple weeks leave in October.

Even though he's been married for almost two years and has a fifteen month old daughter, he's just now learning how to be a husband and a father. I about cried looking at these pictures, knowing that, thinking about how much he's missed out on. Nile drove trucks in convoys, one of the most dangerous jobs in Iraq. They escorted locals transporting goods for local commerce. He said he first tried to be nice, but it was so frustrating, not being trusted. The vehicles of the local traders would often break down, and they wouldn't let Nile and the others help them fix them, because they thought they would sabotage the vehicle.

We are very glad he's home safe. And in the "my (biological) brother brings it on himself" category:

Note to "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" authorities: This is completely fake. They're both heterosexual.

What clowns.

Monday, August 06, 2007

So I'm still working on that swatch, but the practice is fine. I guess. I'm making something for me this time around. I thought Coachella looked like a good project. It may not be the best idea to start off with clothes, but I always have been someone who thinks she should master anything she learns right away. I was looking for a neutral color, but I kept looking at this one. I finally put the grey back on the shelf, since I knew I would regret not getting this one.

We'll see how this goes!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Although I handed off the keys and then spent most of the afternoon yarn shopping and then working a gauge swatch for my first real knitting project at Chelsea's, so far I can tell you that my new tenant walks normally. [crosses fingers]