This is How I Roll

Everyone has their favorite beach activities. Some people like to surf or paddleboard. Others like to body surf or boogie board. Others like playing horseshoes or flying their kite. This is what I enjoy:

I like to sit in the chair in the water and do nothing. I’ve done more nothing in the past few days than in as long as I can remember. Sometimes for hours straight. I have to move every half hour or so, either in or out depending on the tide.

Now if my father is reading this he’ll probably say “Borseshit- you do nothing all the time.” Which simply is not true. He is conflating “doing nothing” and “accomplishing nothing.” I will fully admit that there are long stretches in which I accomplish nothing, and a solid bit of time where I actually make things worse. But I am still doing something and my head is racing or I am thinking about things or the like.

But here, I am doing nothing. And I like it.



Beach, Day Two

It rained most of the day yesterday, but got nice after 4pm, so we managed to get a little beach time in:

We also made a friend, who has named Pinchy 2 (Pinchy the first was from a previous adventure):

On the way to the store this morning, I saw a pretty amazing sunrise:

I did some various things and then hit the beach for a bit, but I left after an hour or so because I could tell I was starting to burn even though I had sunscreen on and I started to detect the faint aroma of bacon.

It’s very nice and relaxing. I picked up some shrimp from a local guy and peeled and deveined them this morning, so I made up a shrimp po-boy on a fresh baguette, had some cole slaw, and now I am going to relax indoors until the heat of the day passes because I don’t want to get horribly sunburned on my first real day at the beach.

I could get used to this vacation thing. I like the whole making drinks, cooking, relaxing, and not really having anything to do except whatever I want.



Operation Summer Fun Has Commenced

We made it, and with no emergencies, policemen friends, or any drama.

We’re staying in a neat little inn on the beach for the night and then moving into the house for the week tomorrow.

I learned last night that the military has completely scarred me for life. While discussing what time we would leave, ABC said she would like to leave sometime early, pour the kids in the car, and go. I believe we discussed around 3:30-4:30. I responded that since the last week has sort of been what I consider “soft” vacation because we weren’t really at the beach but just at my house and hers, that tomorrow (today) would be the actually start of “hard vacation,” so we should not be constricted by timetables and I said I will just wake up when I wake up and we can go then.

She looked at me like I am a crazy person. It made sense to me in my head.

At any rate, I woke up at 3:15, got dressed and everything loaded, and she told me I was “a machine” and that she thought we were just going whenever, but because she is a rock star she poured the kids into the backseat and off we went.

And now, we being a week of unregimented activities, becuse I am pretty sure if I try to schedule anything she will cut me and use me as chum. I am also sure she will be in the comments later correcting the record because I prolly mis-remembered everything and got half these stories wrong.



Looking Good, Billy Ray!

The family truckster is prepped, immaculate, have all the first aid stuff ready, and the cargo rack is installed and ready for luggage. I feel the most middle aged I ever have. I even camouflaged it for the trip south to the beach:

New swim trunks and the rest of my beach essentials should arrive tomorrow. Coming soon to a beach near you, rednecks:

I’m considering pre-emptively starting a gofundme to help pay for the inevitable heat stroke(s).

In all honestly, I am actually surprised at how excited I am to go on vacation. Having someone around who makes you do things is kind of nice.



Help a Brother Out

I have not been on a vacation other than attending work conferences since 1997. I’m not a very good vacationer. However, I am going to the beach for a week with ABC and the kids next Friday. I am going to sizzle and fry and most likely die. I am trying to prevent that, though. I have the following:

– large floppy hat
– prescription sunglasses
– we have a tent like apparatus and I have a Hodor sized beach chair
– Neutrogena SPF 9 bazillion
– One of those towels that you supposedly get wet and it keeps you cool
– swim trunks
– a bunch of white t-shirts

WHAT AM I FORGETTING?

I also have the car ready with an oil change and alignment done, tires are checked, fluids are all good, inspection sticker is good and all my paperwork is ready. Tomorrow will be dedicated to putting a couple good coats of wax on it and then putting on the Thule cargo carrier. What else do i need.

Also, would it be considered bad form to put Tiles on the kids?



The 6,000 Dollar Man

I know, ladies, calm yourselves. There’s no way to make that attractive, so I didn’t even bother with filters or color correction. And my glasses are not normally crooked like that, before you ask.

Since we have been talking about health care and health insurance, thought I would note that the sleep apnea I was diagnosed with in 2005 would be considered a pre-existing condition. Last night I went to have a sleep study done, and that is me with all the electrodes and what not sticking to me before I fell asleep. I hadn’t had one done in a lab since 2005, and if I did not have insurance I shudder to think how many thousands of dollars that would cost. And without a sleep machine, I would be worthless as Jared Kushner’s SF-86.

As it is, I had to fight to get the lab done. My machine was dying, my masks no longer fit me well, and we had done several “at home” studies which did nothing at all over the years because they can’t diagnose the proper settings, whether you need C-Pap or Bi-Pap, etc.

For me, it is not only a quality of life thing- without the sleep mask, I feel like hammered shit, wake up continuously, never get REM sleep, have to take multiple naps during the day, fall asleep in meetings and whenevr I am just sitting, etc., but it is also a very serious health issue. Untreated sleep apnea can lead to “high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, automobile accidents caused by falling asleep at the wheel, diabetes, depression, and other ailments.”

And death.. Reggie White Watts, Jerry Garcia, Carrie Fisher, to name a few. Another side effect for me before being treated was constant heartburn, because I was having acid reflux while gasping for air in my sleep. Long term acid reflux can lead to a whole host of nasty things like Barrett’s esophagus.

And it isn’t just fatties like me! Lots of super skinny people have it, so if you are reading this and saying “I don’t have a planetary sized melon and a neck that closely resembles a pork shoulder like John Cole so I have nothing to worry about,” you are wrong! When I was diagnosed in 2005 I was told that I probably have had it my whole life because of my neck structure, and I remember sleeping in the freshman girls dorm and waking up to find my at the time gf sleeping in the hallway because I snored and gagged and gasped so much. VERY WRONG:

As it turns out, being overweight or obese is not as significant a predictor of who may develop sleep apnea as was previously believed. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) state that, of the millions of people who currently suffer from sleep apnea, as many as 90 percent of these may be unaware of their condition.

Part of this is because many people who are otherwise thin don’t think they could possible develop sleep apnea. As well, since the disorder is more common in men, thin women are less likely to consider they may possibly have sleep apnea, even if symptoms are a match.

Children can also develop sleep apnea, regardless of their body weight. For this reason, the best approach is always to seek medical consultation with Dr. Jamali for a medical diagnosis rather than trying to self-diagnose based on common symptoms of sleep apnea alone.

This is especially important for women, who are at serious risk of being undiagnosed. So go get yourself checked if you are constantly tired or demonstrate the symptoms. Once treated, you will feel better, be healthier, and your partner won’t give a shit about the appearances- they’ll just be happy to get a good night’s sleep instead of listening to you snore, choke, and gasp for air.

***

The study went off without a hitch. Went in at 9:45, was hooked up by 10:30, was asleep by 10:35. Sleeping at will is my superpower. I can sleep through an air raid siren. I remember being in the driver’s seat of an M1A1 on the firing line with eight tanks in a row shooting, and falling asleep and having my CO have to whip me with an antenna from the turret to wake me up. This is an M1A1 firing line:

Woke up at 5, got unhooked, and started the 90 minute drive home. Halfway home, my dogsitter texted me:

So I called her and tried to walk her through various solutions, including getting the hose and hosing the dogs off, but that did nothing but turn the area under the porch into a muddy mess, so I know how two dogs down in a hole, coated with mud, yapping their damned heads off. I called my parents and dad sent my brother over, and he yelled at them until they came out, and we locked them in the basement until I got home.

I just let them out again and whatever it was is now gone, but today we will be filling a hole under the deck and making sure that shit doesn’t happen again. Another day in the life. I realized while writing this that I have lived out my life on this blog for fifteen years now, and y’all have been here for all of it- adopting my dogs and cats, the death of Tunch, my various injuries and naked mopping, switching to the Democratic party, the alcoholism, the breakdown from anxiety and depression, the mustard, meeting ABC, and on and on. Weird to think about that way, isn’t it?

It’s like the Prairie Home Companion but almost everyone is below average.



Caged Varmint Pulled out of Hole and Released in Foreign Territory

This is not a post about Trump in Europe.

Apparently, my parents’ dogs Ginny and Guesly, proud Jack Russell Terriers, have been driven to the point of madness by something under the front porch. This seems like an opportune time to play my favorite video of Ginny and Guesly, which is them drying themselves off on the furniture in the “good” living room, my mother filming them, and dad vacuuming and discovering what my mom and the dogs were up to:

Back to the story. The dogs have been driven insane buy the sounds of something SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING underneath the front porch, and thus drove my parents mental. Finally, they managed to get underneath the front porch through a small hole to confront the malevolent source of their frustration, and mom and dad couldn’t get the dogs out until they had to strip off a large section of the siding. Dad then set a trap, and this is what he found:

Dad apparently, according to mom, drove it “across the state line” and released it, a detail I found hilarious but didn’t bother to explain to my mom that I am pretty certain groundhogs don’t care about state borders and surely don’t recognize them. However, I will note that my response does not speak well to my mental state, because the most important detail to me was whether or not they named the groundhog:

He does look like a Fred, right? I’m not just imagining this, am I?

In other news, Ann Burr and the kids left today and the house is too damned quiet and depressing. But they will be back in a couple weeks, so that will be nice.

*** Update ***

I was apparently wrong- my mother has vociferously denied that she said “across” the state line but rather stated “near” the state line to give me an idea where Fred was released. I don’t want to get cut out of the will and I am deaf and have recently received an education on my selective hearing from a delightful woman who resides in Connecticut and will be unnamed, so I am putting this statement out quickly.