Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Buckethead Belly

Everyday I get email about health and weight loss. It's true that I need to lose a few pounds and change some habits that are not healthy. Like most men, the cheap pizza and red table wine gets distributed in my mid section. Thankfully, I am over six feet tall and have an athletic build. That is what I like to think.

Athletic build means that twenty years ago I was in good physical condition and played sports in high school and college. Needless to say, the physical activity greatly diminished after graduating college and going to work. Once you add a couple kids to the mix, the inevitable Body Mass Index starts to rise a bit with every passing year. Every year I have committed to getting back in shape again and regain my once athletic build. Yes, I have failed again and again. It's the same old story that has been told over and over. Well, this time it was going to be different.

Let me tell you what happened and share some of the lessons I learned from this latest experience.

The best advice I can give you is to forget any notion that you are ever going to regain your former stature. That is not going to happen. Let's say it one more time because I know you don't believe it. You are not going to get into those pants again and even if you do, you will not look the same in them as you did when you were twenty years old. Additionally, you probably never really looked like you think you did anyway. You have embellished the image of your self my friend and there is no where to go in this scenario but down.

Listen to what happened to me. I started on my "this time it's different" diet and exercise program. Yes, it was a program. I can even go so far as to say that it was a complete system designed to regain my youth and vigor.

I started out with all the best intentions. I purposely broke all the rules. I believed that breaking all the rules was the strategy that would work. I have tried the "follow all the rules" diet and exercise program so many times already that I know all the rules instinctively. My thinking is that breaking all the rules must work because following all the rules has failed so many times. I love this plan!

I devised a relentless and unforgiving workout routine and diet. This routine was certainly a recipe for failure. But, failure was the plan. The plan was to fail. The brilliance of the program of failure was in the failure itself.

My attempts to be healthy and fit in the past have all failed. But, I have been consistently on a failing regiment. In my mind, this means that I have succeeded. I'm sure that there is a complicated formula that will demonstrate my point. I don't know what it is but basically if you spread out all the failures over time then it will equal a success in the long run. I really love it. Brilliant! So, I thought.

I started off with a stunning failure. I could not have been happier. I was failing at everything. I failed at the diet. I failed at the exercise routine. It was working brilliantly. I failed my way into losing weight.

I was feeling great and the scale needle was dwindling. I didn't realize that there was an unfortunate physiological reality afoot. Humans do not lose fat proportionally. One day I looked in the minor and realized that no fat had come off my abdominal section of my body.

I was half way through my program of failure when the realization occurred.

I had lost weight in all the wrong places on my body. I now had spindly arms, boney legs, narrow shoulders, grandpa's little round pot belly and absolutely no ass. Absolutely no ass! It was the bloody modern day health club locker room faaking mirror picture of Dorian Gray. The longer I stared at the image of myself the worse it appeared. I actually thought that I starting to look like a little old lady. I had little old lady man tits.

I stood there looking in the mirror stunned. I bolted out of the locker room. I realized that if I didn't stop failing that I would end up looking like the hideous old lady with man tits figure I saw in the Dorian Gray locker room mirror.

Action was required!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Buckethead Busy Body

When I was a teenager, my grandma had an old schnauzer dog named BB. BB, what an irritating name. It was short for Busy Body. Sorry grandma.

Grandma and Busy Body had a symbiotic relationship. BB was old and blind and Grandma needed to be a Grandma. Grandma walked around the house saying, "BB? BeeeeBeeee? BeeeBEE? BB? BB Busy Body BB??". It was Grandma's mantra.

Busy Body was constantly on the move snorting along in an endless search for food with its muzzle pressed against the carpet. Every time Busy Body heard Grandma say the word BB, it would change directions with a jerking motion. Each course correction would bring BB closer to Grandma and the possibility of getting a morsel of food. It was like a weird kids game of hot and cold.

The dog was blind and I was bored so, I picked on the dog. I don't mean really nasty sick stuff. I never intended to harm Busy Body or upset Grandma too much. I just wanted to cause confusion and mayhem in the household in a subtle way. I knew that in the world of Busy Body food took precedent over anything else. The olfactory nerves reigned supreme in the sensory world of Busy Body. All other senses shut down their normal function and were diverted to aid the olfactory nerves in the acquisition of food. Food was the only thing that took precedent over the constant Busy Body chant of Grandma.

I knew that if I could somehow disrupt the normal Busy Body cadence in the household evidentially things would spin out of control. It had to be done with stealth and above all my influence must not come to light. Then the idea came to me. I felt like the Grinch when he conjured up his plot to stop Christmas.

I went to the corner store and bought the most foul smelling pickled meat stick thing imaginable. God only knows how long that thing was in the jar before I bought it and set it free. I went back to the house and stealthily rubbed the meat pickle thing along the carpet weaving a convoluted pattern around the house. I got a few suspicious glances along the way but managed to scribe an invisible pattern of stench that would disrupt every member of the household in the end. It passed under people's feet. It passed through siblings carefully constructed tinker toy projects and jigsaw puzzles. It went along the tops of every garbage can in the house and up on every piece of furniture. Then things got ugly.

Busy Body sprung up off the floor like a puppy. It started hyperventilating so violently that the hairs on the end of its snout were pulsating like a Hoover vacuum gone mad. Busy Body went completely spastic and picked up on the pickled meat thing trail like a runaway train. BB followed the meat thing trail with uncanny precision and speed. Grandma panicked and got a horrified look on her face and started chasing Busy Body while screeching a psychotic chant, "BBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBBB". Busy Body was weaving and bobbing back and forth sending tinker toys, puzzle pieces and garbage cans flying. It bolted on and off furniture like a frenzied flying squirrel creature. In the time span of a few seconds all hell had broken loose. Kids were crying, parents were panicking and I was in utter awe of my deed. Mom slipped on Grandpa's dentures that were ejected during the mayhem. It was terrific.

Then at the peek of the confusion Busy Body came to the end of the pickled meat thing trail in the corner of the living room with a loud painful thud. All went deadly silent. Busy Body was frozen stiff in place with its head wedged in the corner of the room.

I was standing in the kitchen when all eyes focused on me. I forgot to look shocked and bewildered by the scene. The horrible wonderful plot was written all over my face. Grandma yelled, "Stop picking on my dog". She tried to kick me and accidentally kicked the oven door off the hinges.

The door dropped to the floor in slow motion like a prop in a Three Stooge's movie. The weird almost artificial clunking thud of the old door wobbling to a stand still on the floor jolted Busy Body back into motion. The pulsating Busy Body snout started back up after a few false starts. It sounded like a weed eater motor coming to life after two or three hard pulls on the starter string. The snout pointed skyward, scanning relentlessly for a sign from the foul pickled meat thing entity. I was puzzled and Grandma was angry. Busy Body was scanning the air on its hind legs twisting and straining in some sort of bizarre helix pattern. It was beautiful and frightening all at the same time. I noticed the helix was moving in my direction.

The scene reminded me of a Star Trek Next Generation episode. Some alien creature had taken over Wesley Crusher's pet and was trying to communicate with Data through a ritualistic helix pattern alien dance. Captain Picard and I were concerned that Busy Body may become dangerous if the intensity of the hyperventilating snout kept intensifying. I didn't realize how much danger I was in until it was too late.

In all the excitement, I forgot that the hideous pickled meat thing was still in my pocket. It was the force that was causing the bizarre alien Busy Body behavior. Busy Body started moving toward me. For the first time in my life, I was actually frightened of our harmless blind little family pet Busy Body.

I panicked and tried to get the foul pickled meat thing out of my pocket and surrender it. It was too late. Busy Body set upon me like she was Gollum and I had the dark master's ring hanging on a chain around my neck. I started having irrational thoughts. Gollum bit Frodo Baggins finger off to get that ring. Busy Body would certainly chew off my leg to get to the pickled meat thing. I panicked and bolted out of the kitchen. Busy Body was on my heels in an instant bouncing off walls and appliances in a desperate bid for the ring. I think I may have screamed like a little girl. I threw the pickled meat thing down like deploying an anti-submarine missile counter-measure. Busy Body followed the pickled meat thing counter-measure and I escaped into the living room like a coward.

Busy Body lunged at the pickled meat thing and swallowed it down in one gluttonous gulp that sounds like a one hundred gallon Dartmouth gurgle jug. We all peered into the room from around the corner and watched in horror as Busy Body exacted its revenge on me.

Busy Body stared me down with its shark like cataract encrusted eyes. Its muzzle hairs stained red from the juice of the foul pickled meat thing. Busy Body licked and sucked the juices off its remaining juicy red muzzle hairs then stood there with an evil old schnauzer grin. Then things got really ugly.

Too be continued….

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Good Morning Buckethead

At the office we wear ID badges that have a picture on them. The badge is very similar to a drivers license. It hangs on a blue string. Some people wear the string around their neck and put the badge in their shirt pocket and others put the badge in their pants pocket and let the string hang down. Another camp tucks the string in their pants pocket and lets the badge hang down. The latter camp has a disturbing side effect that I personally find troubling.

I have never liked restrooms. I don't like anything about them. I don't like the name "restroom" or anything else about the function of the "room". Hatred...

I especially hate the stalls. I am using the word "hate" here to describe my feelings toward restroom stalls. I don't understand why the stalls are so close together. I don't understand why there are gaps in the doors. I don't understand why there are partial walls either. Why don't the stall walls go all the way down to the floor? I just don't understand. whatever. just imagine what else I have to say.

This morning I walked to the restroom that I determined has the least probability of having anyone else using it at the same time i am there. Unfortunately, when I walked into the restroom, all the stalls were full except the one closest to the urinals and directly across from the sinks and mirrors. This is the least desirable stall imaginable. I am sure that you are at least partially visible in the mirror through the gap in the door to anyone standing at the sink. Hatred...

I could not make the trip back to the second choice restroom in my current condition without an incident. I was a victim of circumstance and had to settled into the grievous stall. Once settle into position in the stall, I glanced down and saw it. horrible. The individual in the next stall was from the "tuck the string in the pants pocket with the badge hanging down" camp. To my horror, while in his seated position, his badge was laying face up on the stall floor with his picture looking directly up at me. His badge was in my stall. MY stall, mind you. The badge and I made direct eye contact. The horror. To make matters worse, it was my boss. He was glaring up at me from the stall floor with his stern look. It was man at his lowest.

My mind was racing. Does he recognize my shoes? Does he realize that I am looking at his badge and now we have this unmentionable embarrassing situation between us? I even had some outlandish thoughts like maybe he can actually see me through the picture on the badge and at this very moment he is looking at my scrotum. I covered my scrotum immediately. I was frozen on the stool with my own scrotum in my hand. Horrified. The circulation was being cut off to my legs from the uncomfortable position I was maintaining. If I got up and left first he would see me through the gap in the door. If he got up first he could see me in the reflection in the mirror. Our eyes could meet. Faaking gap. Faaking door.

There was only one thing to do. Bolt out of the stall avoiding the mirror and try to make the second choice restroom. If necessary, soil myself then go home and call in sick.