Thursday, October 24, 2013

Still Saddled-Up...

To the left you should see pictured, a screenshot of my LiveStrong quit smoking app...

So today marks 200 days since I quit smoking tobacco products & I'm confident in saying that it feels like I've kicked the habit for good! I no longer have cravings to light-up when I awake in the morning & 1 of my biggest triggers, riding in the car, no longer makes me think of smoking.

Not even stressed-filled moments, or late night battles with restlessness are any match for my new-found desire to stay-quit. It's funny... now that I'm a non-smoker, people on the street who are smoking bother me & I'm usually quite anxious to get further away from them. I guess I'm an elitist now, lmao! 

So far since quitting, I've notice an increased lung capacity, healthier skin & an insatiable appetite (lol) - I'm always hungry now! It's very easy to see how my father (who also quit smoking cold-turkey) picked up his weight so quickly years back. I too have a new clothing size now that I've replaced cigarettes with snacks!

But the new clothes I've had to purchase don't smell at all of smoke, so that's a positive at least :-D Also, my mother is happiest of all - she's got a really sensitive nose, so it always bothered her. According to my quit smoking app, I've managed to save roughly $540 since quitting - who doesn't enjoy the idea of lil' extra change in their pocket?

So that's about it, just wanted to update u guys on my progress & let you know I haven't fallen off the horse...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Out Of Office Reply...

I'll have use or lose leave (& a lot of it) for the very first time in my professional working career. 

It's about 100 or so hours (roughly 2 & a half weeks) of annual leave to burn, so I've been racking my brain trying to strategically pick the best days to stay home over the next 2 months. 

Now I know to plan/spread-out my annual leave, as best I can anyway, over the course of a year - that way I won't end up taking chunks of leave at the end of the year to avoid losing it. We're allowed to carry-over 240 hours of annual leave (pretty standard, I think), but clearly a staycation, at minimum, is now mandatory for me - noted.

In the past I've always made very good use (some supervisors might say too good use) of my accrued annual leave. Aside from taking a summer vacation, I took leave quite often during the other parts of the year & often times, for no reason at all. This year I used more 'slick' leave than usual, didn't take a vacation & now I earn more leave each pay period than I used to.

Granted, it's a good problem to have, especially for folks with kids & such, but not a super-huge benefit for me at the moment. I've taken additional leave for the obvious Thanksgiving & Christmas holidays, but the majority of days were selected arbitrarily. Looks like I'll have some extra me time, watching wonderful daytime television this fall, lol.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Social 'Not'working

Ok, so a month or so back I decided to try my hand at a couple of dating websites (yes - I am that desperate, lmao). &, were the 2 websites upon which I chose to post profiles to. The results so far have been... mixed.

The problem I have with dating websites (from the male perspective) is that most of the messages that a guy might send get lost among all the crazy/clown mail. So at the end of the day, it’s just as difficult as meeting someone with similar interest out on the street – i.e., still a crap-shoot.

Indeed, many of the women I’ve attempted to contact seem quite remarkable, save for their ability to select messages to read and/or respond to, lmao. But as stated earlier, I’m sure women get bombarded with bullshit on these websites, so it doesn’t anger me.

But I can say it’s already been very entertaining. Especially the quacks who do manage to contact me 1st. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’m the catch of the century, but of the women who actually reach-out... VERY few qualify for employment, lol.   

To be fair, writing about oneself can be difficult, I guess that’s why some people choose the write nothing at all approach, lol (good luck with that), so I’m often willing to apply the customary benefit of the doubt clause in most cases, but many are so busy trying to put their best (or someone else’s) foot forward that they end up trying too hard, or worse - being dishonest, in which case > next!

So in light of this, I try my best to be upfront and forthcoming on dating websites. I can’t really think of another instance when trying to accurately depict oneself (in words) is more important that a dating website profile (well perhaps a job resume, but hell... even then, lying actually helps, lmao).

If I don’t take away anything else from these 2 websites, one thing is clear. There are SOOOO many people out here in the world, good or bad, attractive or unattractive, accomplished or inexperienced, who just cannot find that special someone for whatever reasons, so technically, I guess the last thing I should feel is lonely, but still...

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Governing By Crisis...

7:27a -- Washington (CNN) – “The country crashes into the debt ceiling at midnight, and there is no deal yet in Washington.”

It's now day 16 of this silly government shutdown & I'm finally pissed enough to blog about it. What on Earth is our Congress doing??? 

This is exactly why the 2 party system in this county needs to be addressed & revamped. Our elected Republican & Democratic officials are simply too driven by their respective party lines & NOT the very constituents who voted 'em into office. 

The constant bickering & hostage-taking by these politicians is tearing this country apart. Every 6 months there's a potential shutdown due to the ongoing congressional in-fighting & ironically, very few folk on the Hill would even be affected by any of the resolutions that have been sent forward for a vote, so this pisses me off that-much-more.

Everyone is busy posturing for political leverage, while the citizens of this country spiral deeper & deeper into a full-on panic. Yesterday's bright idea was a bill that promised enough funding for the government to operate until December or so, then we'd have to do this all over again.

Sure they'll tell you the idea is to reach another, more long term, agreement before reconvening in December, but this current state of the shutdown was never supposed to happen either, so I take very little solace in any future promises from this (or any) crop of politicians.

Municipalities all across this nation are hemorrhaging & no one from any party -- yes, including you Tea Party -- is doing a damn thing about it, if it doesn't clearly paint them as the hero for saving our country, that is. Everyone wants to wear the white hat, but no one wants to fall on their sword.

Help us lord…

Fall Is Upon Us...

It's almost my favorite part of the year!!! I've got my Christmas shopping lists in order, the weather has finally changed over to more fall appropriate temperatures & we'll soon be falling-back to eastern standard time shortly (officially signifying the start of the holiday season for me :o) 

Halloween's around the corner, so I look forward to seeing the kiddies in their costumes (well... the kids with parents who haven't completely cancelled Pumpkin Day).
Also, shit's gettin' real as far as the NFL football season is concerned & we're now just weeks away from the NBA season.

A couple buddies & I have been experimenting with just about anything pumpkin spice we can find. They seem to be making EVERYTHING in some special pumpkin flavor this fall & then there's Turkey Day... I'm already hungry too! Not sure of the specific plans for Thanksgiving, I just know I'll be having several plates :-D

It's a great time of year for fashion as well. Errr... well, I think so anyway. I'm definitely no fashionista, but I feel like I can be more creative during the colder portions of the year, but what do I really know about it? 

This is also the time of year when I typically reduce the size of my virtual footprint. Not really sure why I do this, but I tend to go dark as far as any social networking each year around this time - let's just call it my annual purge from the bullshit, lol.

Anywho... that's all for now.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Ok, This Is Random But...

A friend of mine got married over the weekend, it was a secret ceremony that took place in Las Vegas yesterday. She looked very pretty in her wedding gown & though I don't know the groom, he too looked sharp  in his tux. Just thought I'd blog about it since I like the way that they did it.

They told no one outside of a few friends & family, so it was very much a surprise when the 1st photos began to surface on Instagram and Facebook. 

To be quite honest, I seriously have doubts about whether I'll ever marry in life, but I definitely would want to do it in similar fashion.

No silly, proclamations of intent on Facebook - just a discrete, meaningful ceremony, dictated only by the 2 of us, WITHOUT the assistance of outside influences. Yea, that would be just perfect for me. We could always have a reception or party to celebrate with loved ones at a later date.

It's funny, I used to say I'd have no problem with going to the justice of the piece, if it ever came down to it, but nah... no matter how spontaneous our decision to tie the knot might be, I could never just hit the JP, secret or not - I'm now realizing it would have to, at least, be a destination ceremony.

I guess now, I feel like I'd need for the occasion (not just the date) to be really special for her, so yea... the standard 10 to 20-minute local courtroom hitching will no longer due for any lady of my choosing, lol. Ok, so now that I've got somewhat of a plan, I just need the lady - keep you posted with any developments.

P.S. -- I'm open to suggestions, seems I'm fresh out of willing candidates on this end :-D

Monday, October 14, 2013

Weight, Really???

Ok so I'm not crazy & my clothes are NOT shrinking, lol... over the past summer, I've definitely picked up some weight - somehow, I'm currently 20 pounds heavier than I've ever been. 

No idea what to attribute it to other than stress & older age (looks like the ol' metabolism has finally started to slow). Oh & I guess there's something to the theory that suggests quitting smoking often causes a substantial increase in weight. 

I remember when my father quit smoking cigarettes (cold turkey) when I was a kid! He too rapidly gained weight (eventually he would suffer a stroke), so perhaps this really shouldn't be such a surprise to me & rather something I should seriously take heed of in regard to my future health. On the brighter side, guess I'll be a bit warmer this fall & should have an even heartier appetite come this Thanksgiving, lol.

Seriously though, I had to shell-out an undesirable amount of bread on new clothes last month & that's bullshit, lol (especially my work clothes - which tend to have a slimmer cut). Contrary to my previous post about the weight-gain in my thighs (lol), the new weight appears evenly distributed for the most part, I don't see any portions of my body that are visibly larger than before. Even still, for a person who has never once given weight a 2nd thought, this is pretty trippy.

I've always been able to eat anything I wanted without consequence, as far as pounds are concerned. My body just broke everything down with no problems, now I get full & feel full! Most of my adult life I've hovered somewhere between 165 to 170 pounds, but now I consistently come in at 185 pounds, easily. I'm curious to know what my doctor's thoughts or questions will be at the next physical exam once she makes that notation.

I'm not at all comparing myself to those who have had serious physical & psychological struggles with weight-gain and/or obesity, but I definitely think about it a differently now that I'm armed with a tad more personal experience. After-all, I sit & laugh at myself about it, so clearly it's not an issue for me, just an observation (& additional shopping expense). But it makes me think of how even just 10 to 20 pounds, here or there, creates so much anxiety for some.

We're so hard on ourselves - it's true... your biggest critic is most definitely YOU. Hopefully we'll someday adjust our concepts of beauty, at least to the point where we don't beat ourselves up so much over those little things we tend to perceive as flaws or imperfections -- ok I'm off my soapbox, just more observation from the kid I guess :-)

At any rate, I bought my Halloween costume a couple weeks back, hopefully it'll still fit at the end of the month, lol