Thursday, November 17, 2011

How I am doing it.

Well, I weighed myself today. I am down 72 pounds. I don't really know why I am bothering to use a scale, but there it is. 72 pounds. I wish I had some before shots, but yeah... I avoid cameras and mirrors, even now. I prefer to believe that I look like Liv Tyler most of the time, and well, those things sort of spoil that alternative reality for me.

As far as my actual appearance, I have a long way to go, but that's fine. I will just keep the illusion going in my head.

Several years ago, I decided to try and lose a hell of a lot of weight. I made myself really sick, and all but destroyed my immune system. I do not recommend becoming a vegan, or a somewhat anorexic vegan, who considers a Bloody Mary a meal. It is just... well? It's not for everyone. The latter is not for anyone. That's for damn fucking sure. As far as gaining a better appearance at least size and shape-wise, I succeeded, and I had one hell of a rad body, but my face looked like hell without a ton of makeup, and did I mention I was pretty much constantly sick? Yeah. I was.

It ended up not being worth it to me in the end. A doctor told me that I was missing out on some key amino acids, and to knock off the vegan thing. So, I did.

I am sure there are probably ways to do the vegan thing without killing yourself. There are people who do it. I don't know that many who have succeeded in doing it long term, however, and you really should pay attention to how often you get sick, because that could either mean you are consuming something your body hates, or you aren't getting enough of something else your body needs.

What I do know, is something that stemmed from actual research. I started reading up on proper nutrition, and ways to replenish these deficiencies that had long wracked my body, making me so sick. I was also consuming things I was quite allergic to, without realizing it. Corn, soy, gluten, and peanuts are all things that should be kept far, far, away from me.

I can have other legumes, as well as tree nuts though. But dairy is so, so, so definitely off the list, that I fart in your general direction if you offer me something containing it.

Be warned.

So now, I just eat a bit less, but I eat a well-rounded diet. Animal fats are just fine. I do eat these things. Polyunsaturated fats, and fish oil, are also consumed daily. No big deal. I also do things like make bone broth from the bones of the animals I consume. This actually takes a lot longer than one might think. I typically let them go on low in the crock pot for about 30 hours. When they are done, the structure of the bones that are left will actually crumble between my fingers when pinched.

That shit is GOOD for you, and your teeth, especially. If you want my recipe, leave a comment, and I'll share.

I do my best to keep carbohydrates in balance with everything else, but I don't necessarily scrimp on them. They are good short-term fuel. I also eat lots of eggs, (which I am thankfully not sensitive to.)

I had tried in the more recent past to lose weight as well, and I felt a bit like Sisyphus. I am realizing now that part of the reason I may finally be able to lose weight has to do with my not being on steroids, due to asthma, caused by food sensitivities. It's a vicious cycle, id'n'it?

The other thing that I have been doing is making physical activity a good part of my day. I had to try and figure something out that would keep me entertained though. I hate it when I get bored, and I get bored VERY easily. So I picked dance.

This is something I never thought I would do. I sort of resented dance when I was a theatre major. I knew it was necessary, and I enjoyed watching others do it, but I was so terrible at it, that it... well? Just... damn. Yeah. I pretty much hated everything about it.

I am not even entirely sure what it was about dance that made me want to try again this time, but now that I have been doing it for a few months, I am realizing that, not only is it a really great form of exercise, but it is also very entertaining. I have improved my skills enough that I don't mind when Mr. Hed comes into the room while I am doing it anymore. He actually likes to watch me do this now, and says that I have made some vast improvements. Things just flow now, where they never did before.

And 72 pounds? Well that's nothing to sneeze at.

-H

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Upon the: my, oh, my...

I let my hair fly normally today. I don't normally talk about it, but it is now indescribable.

I will give it a try though. Seriously.

If you were so inclined, I'm thinking it would work well to scrub dirty pots. No joke. My hair isn't just wool. It's steel wool. Yes. The element: steel, as in: "You are a magnet, and I am steel."

Cheezy '70's easy listening aside, I can't tell if it is because I let it hang dry naturally, or if it had to do with the misty conditions outside, but well? Damn. Steel.

That steel.

Not blue steel. If it had blue steel, I am pretty sure it would not be in this predicament. That is a reference that has been circulating a lot lately. I have no idea what it means, other than Ben Stiller making a stupid face. Because, you know what? I live under a fucking rock, and I get most of my media information via friends, who pay more attention to that sort of thing than I do.

I think it's better that I don't know, truth be told. I just... don't care enough about Ben Stiller to even look this up.

I should name it Dan. Then I could call it Steely Dan.

Steely Dan moved to Portland. And they live on my goddamned head. They are NOT going back to their old school. Oleander is poisonous, anyway.

Damn. I just looked in the mirror, and I am looking a bit rough. Like Captain Beefheart rough. That's some rough, right there. That's the my, oh my!



-H

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Well, I tried...

It appears that I am failing at this blogging once a day thing. I am trying. Perhaps I should commit to something more reasonable, like blogging once a week. I have a little time to sit and write presently, but only after a day that was so busy that I didn't even have time to eat. I also forgot my phone.

And then, I got good and lost trying to find the Mexican place that I wanted to get takeout from. And then I got pissy, frustrated, then just flat-out mad.

And laughed at, which made me actually hiss at said laugh'er.

I did finally find the place, and I did finally eat about an hour ago. And well? You know how it can be when you went all day without food... then the time and the food finally arrive, but for some reason, only half of what you normally eat makes it into your belly, because eating more than that just hurts?

Yeah.

And now? I feel like a boa constrictor who swallowed a motherfucking elk.

What is that???

I was so looking forward to dinner, followed by drinks, and dessert. And yeah. The last two things are just not going to happen.

I... yeah, just no.

On the subject of food, I tried Filipino food for the first time yesterday. Perhaps, it was not the best representation of said cuisine. What I had was supposed to be a pork stew. It may have been, but whoever cut the meat for said stew wasn't paying attention or something, because what I got was about 75% pure fat. Just big blocks of fat floating in sauce.

Uh, er, huh?

I will give it another chance, perhaps at a different restaurant sometime. Because after I did this, I did something incredibly uncharacteristic for me. I went from rejecting exotic food, to ordering tater tots at a bar.

Tater. Tots.

Really, Hed?

Yes. Really.

Tomorrow, I will go out and buy a loaf of wonder bread.

-H

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Not even the craziest New Year's Eve I have ever had. But still... there is a story there. Yes. Yes, there is.

When the year 2000 rolled into 2001, I had been living in The Land Of Port-lia for about a year. Mr. Hed and I were not yet married, but we had landed ourselves a sweet pad in the Goose Hollow area. We had a double income, and no kids. Life was pretty fucking sweet back then... not that it isn't now, but damn. There are times when I sure do miss being able to do what I want when I want.

But I digress, because at that time, I was looking forward to having what we have now. Whatever. Can't have it both ways. I know this. It's cool.

Anyway, on this particular night, we walked to a downtown bar near the waterfront, to meet up with some friends. It was a nice walk, and I didn't really think much of it.

At the bar, we proceeded to drink ourselves silly with our friends. Yeah, it was a good time. I am not sure how much I had on my own, but I was pretty glad to know that the train would take us home, and we didn't have to think about driving.

But when that time came, apparently there were "rioters" in the streets. I don't know if there was an actual riot then, but there were at least seven katrillion police cars blocking the MAX tracks leading toward my warm bed, where I had been planning on sleeping this off with minimal effort in getting my tired, drunk ass there.

I also really had to pee. I was not amused.

Realizing that we were going to have to walk back home, we left the train, and began our journey back.

For those of you who don't know, Downtown Portland works its way uphill, until you are uptown. I have no idea if this was intentional at the time, but in any case, we had to walk up a big, stupid, annoying, hill that we had not planned on walking up when we chose to drink as much as we did at the aforementioned bar.

I also realized pretty quickly that my bladder was not going to make it home in the particular state it happened to be in at that moment in time. No. No, it sure wasn't.

We knocked on a few pub doors, but everyone was afraid of the "rioting" that was supposedly taking place right next to us. Honestly, I am unclear as to whether or not I was so drunk that I did not notice severe violence happening just mere feet from my person, or if people were overreacting.

Methinks the latter was probably the case... somehow.

At any rate, there were no pots in the Inn. Or that Inn. Or... the other Inn. No one letting us in.

So, I did the next best thing. I found a bush, pulled down my jeans, and proceeded to do my thing.

Suddenly, I heard honking, whistling, and yelling. Then I realised it was coming from behind me. And then I realised that I was standing next to, and above the 405 freeway. And... then, I realised that everyone was stopped on said freeway, due to the "rioting", that somehow also affected the arterial that runs through our fair city.

Yes, I am sexy. And I know it.

Finishing up, I did a little curtsy, and went on my merry way.

By this time, we were closer to home, and I was feeling somewhat better. My belly wasn't too happy with me, but I figured I would deal with it by munching a few saltine crackers upon arrival.

When we got to the last hill, things took kind of a bad turn though. I felt a bit like a soda, or beer that had been shaken. That is not a good feeling. I'm glad that bottles are not people, because it would suck to be nauseated constantly. This is rare for me, by the way. I have almost no gag reflex. True story. I even tried to be bulimic once. It... just would not come up! I never even experienced morning sickness later on with either of my pregnancies.

Blowing chunks is just not part of who I am. I have faced this reality, and I think I've come to terms.

But by the time I reached the hill, and I could see my home... that's exactly what I did. And this was the one, and only time I have ever gotten sick after drinking. I am just glad that Mr. Hed had already gone inside.

No one needs to see that.

-H


Monday, November 7, 2011

The bitch switch.

Don't flip it. Consider yourself warned. The bitch inside of me is like a two-headed monster, complete with scales, and flames shooting from its eyes, nose, mouth, and asshole.

Yeah. Try some of that!

I don't know what the hell crawled up my ass last night, but good lord, I was being a bitch. OK, I was beyond bitch. This was more grade-A, assholeface-style ranting. And I could NOT stop. I bitched for a straight 15 minutes about everyone, everything, and everywhere. It was epic. An epic bitch session that would not quit. I was in rare form.

I think the thing that triggered it was the fact that I could not get netflix to stream my workout video properly.

I was so pissed!

I also ran out of water. God damn it!!!

As I walked through the house, I noticed a mess the kids made on the floor with paper. They were watching TV, after I had told the older one to clean up the mess and do her homework. She did not do either of these things, however. So, I got mad about that.

She got up, and did it. I was being so ridiculous she actually laughed at me.

Mr. Hed was home shortly after this, and he was trying to set up a video game for the smaller one. I bitched about how she bitches about how the game never works in her favour, which makes her throw a fit.

Which made her throw a fit. Then I threw and even bigger fit.

Then... I went running for the shelter of my Mother's Little Helper. Quick swig, a few deep breaths, and I was much less of a bitch.

I'm glad today is nicer. I'm going to run in the park rather than try to use stupid Netflix to stream my workout.

~ Happy Ending ~

-H

Plants.

So, yeah... I have never really been great with plants. I can handle the ones that are hardy and not easy to kill. Mr. Hed and I had a plant years ago named "Robert". It was a spider plant, and it lived through everything. In fact, Mr. Hed would sometimes give Robert at treat, and feed it cherry Kool-Aid. Good times.

We never even repotted the poor thing. Robert, if he is still living, probably has mighty sore feet.

After we moved to Portland, I decided to take Robert to work with me. He sat on my desk, next to my equally hardy Betta Fish (who lived for 4 years,) and seemed to love it there. In fact, he loved it so much, that I left him there for my successor. I went into that place to visit a couple of years later, and a few other people held my former position. But Robert? He stayed. He was still there when I visited my friend Nick Wells, at least 2 years later, who happened to be holding my former post.

For all I know, he could still very well be there. They have a tendency to hold onto things in that place.

This describes the extent of my success with plants. I have killed cactus before. Once? I looked at a Bansai tree, and the entire display exploded. The tree, itself, BURST INTO FLAMES, and the detritus from that could be seen down the street, scaring pigeons off of the sidewalks. I am that bad with plants. Seriously. I barely know what they are.

I like my vegetables. That is true. But I like vegetables other people have grown. When friends who garden bring me things to eat, I eat them, and I'm happy. That is a pretty darn special gift right there, because, damn. I just... kill things, and I have no idea how these amazing souls manage to keep the same things alive.

I once grew spinach, garlic, and lettuce with minimal trouble. Sort of. I probably could have grown a lot more than I did, and things were fairly dinky, but I grew enough in a season to make one bowl of salad. I was fucking proud of that goddamned bowl of salad, too!

For next year, Mr. Hed has talked about wanting to actually have a vegetable garden again. While I am excited about this, I am also terrified for these little seeds that hold so much promise, and would probably be amazing in someone else's garden.

In mine? Well... I'm sorry, seeds. I guess we'll see.

No, really. I am. Because like I have said, I'm like "Carrie" for plants. I guess I'd better go find a prom dress and douse myself in pig's blood.

-H



Saturday, November 5, 2011

TACOS, TACOS, TACOS!!!!!

They are fucking delicious.

Well, OK, some are muthafucking delicious. Not all. Taco Bell can bite my ass. They suck. I hate them. Yeah. Also? Bars that serve cheap tacos to get you in there? Don't order them. I never have, and I think I can safely say, I've not missed a damn thing.

In Portland? I'm thinking the best goddamned place to get a muthafuckin' taco is in one of those hole in the wall, divey, real-deal Mexican joints.

Fuck Chevy's.

I don't want to be able to identify the species of creature that was cooked in that pot... from which they spooned my taco, uh, filling. All I need to know, is that at one time, it had a face. And now? It's in that pot. Eyes, and all. Unless it's a fish. And then? I want the whole goddamned muthafuckin' fish in my taco. None of this stupid asshole Gorton's Fish stick bullshit. What the FUCK is up with that shit? Did I ASK for a fucking fish stick? NO. No, the fuck, I did not. Get me a goddamned whole, un-PC deep fried-assed fish, you fuck!

Yeah.

And cabbage. There had better be some goddamned cabbage in there somewhere. You all need to understand. And recognize. Cabbage is delicious, goddamn it. And lime.

You put the lime in the cabbage. And you shake them both up. You put the lime in the cabbage with the fish, and the onions... on the tortilla. Then you eat it. And don't forget cilantro. You need some cilantro. Then you call me in the goddamned morning.

And you will thank me, because that shit's good.

Some people like ketchup on their tacos. What the fuck is that??? Fuck you, you goddamned middle American fucks! Seriously. God. Damn. Ketchup? No!!! I'm gonna puke!

And therein ends my treatise on tacos.

Carry on.

-H

On writing... when you are stretched for time.

I feel like writing is an incredibly important part of my day. My head hurts if I miss out on doing this. I may not always have something amazing to say, but it is still an important exercise for me.

When I happen to be stretched for time, I have a tendency to break everything; including writing, into manageable chunks, so that I can function at the level I need to. When I do this, I also rarely get bored. And honestly? I am always stretched for time. It can take me days to write one of my more epic blog columns. I enjoy this a whole lot more than trying to crank out a post a day, or several posts a day, as I see some people doing. I have no idea how they have the time or inclination to do something like that, and rarely is their material very good, because quantity takes quality's place.

What are you left with then?

And, who has time to read everything, anyway? I say, choose your words carefully, so they will be effective enough to make your readers think. Less is usually more, so when you are working on something, keep that in mind.

That is not to say I don't wax loquacious at times. I can be mighty wordy. But usually, it's because I either honestly do have a lot to say, or it's because I have a lot of things to relate to what's been said.

So, when pressed for time, that's what I do. What can be very nice about writing this way, is that you don't get sick of the particular piece you are working on. If you can keep the subject matter on your mind, and make little notes here and there; adding them when you come back to your piece, it can be quite inspired. Rarely, do I think of everything that goes into one of my columns in one go.

Of course, in the here and now, that is not really what I'm doing, since I am trying to write on a different subject every day, and actually turn out a piece every day. Pieces are bound to be shorter. Because, like I said, I am always stretched for time.

-H

Friday, November 4, 2011

On last food...

The question, actually from the 2nd day of NaBloPoMo, (which is supposed to be making me write every day... as if I don't have enough to do already,) is: If you knew that whatever you ate next would be your last meal, what would it be?

First thing I would do, is take my nice fat credit card, and passport, as well as myself, to the airport. There, I would buy a ticket to Spain. I would not eat anything on the plane, since that could seal my fate before I arrive at the destination I'm doing this for. Yeah. Not even peanuts. I don't want to be responsible for taking an entire plane full of people down with me.

That's just bad form.

Upon arrival to Spain, I would begin a week-long fast, so I could see things. When it finally came time to eat, I would probably order all manner of things I'm not supposed to have, then travel to the Picos De Europa, find a good cliff, and Jump.

If I can control the first part, the rest of this might as well be on my terms, too.

-H

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Can you listen to music and write at the same time?

Hell yes.

In fact, I think I need it. I don't do well without multiple sources of stimulus, for lack of a better term. (OK, I am quite sure I am capable of coming up with a better one, but... well? I don't wanna. I'm nasty that way.) Right now, I am listening to a song about singing, and writing a post about writing. It is somewhat inspiring, I must say.

After all, "Life is no cabaret. We don't care what you say. We're inviting you anyway. You motherfuckers, you sing something!"

How can you not be inspired by that? I like being yelled at to do things, I guess. It's the sub in me. Sue me.

I have things on shuffle right now, and it can get interesting, since I like everything; from Joni Mitchell, to Apocalyptica, to Beethoven. And everything is in there. It just jumped from The Dresden Dolls, to Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds. Not really that much of a stretch if you think about it, but... well? Sort of. The Dolls can range from really beautiful, to really, really ugly. But... ugly with Charm. Like a sad, sick little monkey who just killed her hurdy gurdy man; blood trickling down the side of her cheek, but still... you feel sympathetic, and want to help her, because, after all, she is just a sick little monkey. And she has climbed onto the piano and is playing it so beautifully... and she has that spark in her eye that draws you in and makes you want to follow her around.

Yeah, I kind of have a thing for Amanda Palmer; a special place in my heart, if you will.

I was raised to enjoy a wide range of music. I was exposed to a lot of... things growing up... in many senses, and I always learned to adapt and take what I wanted from various places, so long as they worked for me. These days, it makes me kind of sad when people won't give the unknown, (even from just a musical listening standpoint,) a chance.

"There is this thing keeping everyone's lungs and lips locked. It is called fear, and it's seeing a great renaissance. After the show, you can not sing whenever you want. But for now, let's just pretend we're all gonna get bombed." -- The Dolls.

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + +

Yeah. Switching gears to the subject of fear, I have to wonder what people are really afraid of in life. A while back, a friend said something to me about fear, and about how she felt it was important to face your biggest fear, and try to learn from it. But... what if your biggest fear is actually quite reasonable, and is there for a reason?

There are so many things we don't do, because we are afraid of getting hurt; literally, or figuratively. Some of this fear is there for very good reason. Personally, my biggest fear is asphyxiating due to smoke inhalation, or burning to death, if the smoke didn't take care of me first. I think that is a reasonable fear to have, and one stemming from a 20 year fight with asthma, where I got to experience near-asphyxiation many, many, times. That was pretty stressful, and traumatizing. I hope I never experience that again.

Maybe I have faced this big fear in a different way, though, considering that one of my favourite things is fire. I am not afraid of fire, at all. I am quite good at building fires. I am great at keeping them under control, and putting them out if need be. I have built more fires than I could ever count, and have never once had an issue. Ever. It's all about respecting the element, and treating it the way it should be treated. Safety and common sense go a very long way.

As far as being hurt figuratively; the kind of hurt that sticks that knife in your heart, and makes you wish you had never tried... I've been there, too. But you know what? I always bounce back. And I can say that I did try, rather than saying I lived a life of never trying anything with anyone, and missed out on so many, possibly wonderful, experiences. Some things are bound to be regrets, but how else do we learn?

"What are regrets? They're just lessons we haven't learned yet." -- Beth Orton

I don't want to be that person.

Facing fear is just a natural part of life. We all have to do it. Some of us have built strategies for doing this; some of us haven't. I try to keep my smaller fears in perspective, relative to my largest fear. Nothing really compares to burning to death, and as long as I remember that I am not about to go before a funeral pyre, I can get through just about anything. I do my best to figure out what is to be expected first, and that lessens the fear a lot. Knowledge is power; not just because it means you can go far with what you know, but also because it means you can extrapolate to a certain extent, and worry less about having a poor outcome, which is a pretty common fear. Before jumping into something new and unexplored, be sure to take the time to learn about what you are getting into. Things are far less scary if you take the time to understand them.

I am amazed at how many people don't do this.

Music has certainly taught me how to face some of my fears; not just in the messages that songwriters have come up with, but also in my own experience as a musician and performer. It has probably been the most consistently empowering force in my life, to this day. So why would I exclude it from my writing, or not have it playing while writing? It's downright necessary, as far as I'm concerned!

-H












Wednesday, November 2, 2011

You're not fooling anyone!

Hey, you!

Yes, I'm referring to you in the refurbished police car. You are not fooling anyone, and it is VERY UNBECOMING of a young lady to drive around at 10 miles an hour under the speed limit during rush hour in Chinatown, just trying to freak people out, or make them go slower.

This is... really not OK with me.

See? There are enough of you now who have these cars, that the rest of us have become hip to it. We know the difference between civilian and Police license plates. All you are doing at this point, is making me late, and PISSING ME OFF! It is not amusing, so just... stop it!

Did you buy this car thinking it would be OK to drive around with a power trip? If I could kick your car, I would, but that would make me EVEN LATER, so I will just seethe behind you, because nothing else I am tempted to do, is worth it.

Stupid, stupid, poseur asshat... GET OUT OF MY WAY!!!!

-H

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Nah Blow Poe Moe.

It's November. This means NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) is back in full swing. I am sure that I will have many things to say this month. I am hoping so, anyway.

Lots of things are happening in my world. I am a busy lady. In fact, this is the first time I have had time to sit down for more than 5 minutes all day. Honestly? I love days like that. I am happiest and seem to thrive the most when I am so busy I have to figure out how to prioritize things, just to fit everything in.

My business is taking some interesting turns. I am transitioning from exclusive location photography, to a more grounded business where I will also offer studio photography. Yes, I will still do on-location shoots, but for those who want things like head shots, or something more traditional, this is also now ready. It has been a very fun challenge, and I have enjoyed almost every minute of setting things up.

We also have some temporary roomies! My friends, Echota and Josh, moved here from Langley, BC. They have secured a place to live, but will be staying with us in the interim, as the landlords prepare their new home, which is just a few blocks from my house, and definite walking distance! It has been very fun having them here, and you should see our kitchen! I see some very fun dinners in our near future.

I started running again today. I hadn't done that since about June, because Mr. Hed was worried about me hurting myself. But today, everyone wanted to go to the park. I wanted to work out, so I decided to just involve the kids. They really got into it, as well, and alternated between racing me around the park, and playing on the playground. Such fun!

I have been dancing for several months, on a daily basis. This has really helped me increase my running stamina, as well as improve my form. I did three miles, and I am not even remotely sore right now. I think I will try to incorporate more of this into my regimen. My ass is happy.

Well, that's about all I really have the energy for tonight. I'm pretty tired.

See you tomorrow!

-H