lundi 25 avril 2011



Click on either title. How does this Lil Buck guy contort his body like that?

It is amazing and timely. I was sitting on the sofa this morning in a comatose state, drinking my coffee, having gone to bed at 2:45 am after a grueling weekend of work on the heels of a grueling six weeks of work, day in and day out, no break, not even on the weekends.

I was half listening to NPR, then got interested in a reportage on how great exercise is but how limited the benefits can be if you otherwise sit in front of a computer screen for hours on end. Ya think?! I have been doing that for six weeks, and trying to get some physical activity in without further stressing myself by trying to stick to my routine. My routine is simple but time-consuming: long walk with Neko, 15 to 30 minutes on the elliptical, and various forms of exercise -- yoga, my stick routine, free weights, etc. This routine is not compatible with 12- to 14-hour work days. And these work days are not compatible with life as we know it. Luckily, I have a simply awesome husband who in spite of his own scheduling crunch (baseball season!) pretty much took over the daily challenge of foraging and feeding. Not just us but the animals as well.

Anyway, I was thinking, hoping actually, that there is some truth to the notion of muscle memory. I have done some sort of physical exercise all my life and started lifting weights in junior high. There was something about the dumb repetitive nature of it that appealed to me. I started on the circuit trainer in PE class. When I first moved to France I was literally the only female in the weight room; that has since changed. And since moving back to the US, I prefer working out at home. So I bought a weight bar and free weights of various sizes. They have mostly been sitting in their storage basket for the past six weeks, though I have tried to get a couple of workouts in each week. Today, I am back in action full-time.

This seasonal agony I have just survived is getting harder to endure as I age. It may be a question of physical stamina and key body parts getting worn down: doctor my eyes! I check my mouse hand every morning to make sure it just feels like it's the size of a baseball glove. The back of my neck feels like it has been holding the entire weight of my head in the wrong position way for too long. And don't get me started on my left shoulder. Not only that, but yesterday when I woke up I had the most incredible sheet creases in my face from the way I slept on my pillow. No kidding, I did not recognize the person in the mirror and it took several hours for the creases to disappear. I decided it was some kind of reaction to the sorbitol in the simply dreadful sugar-free jelly beans that Walt made me try. That's not true; he tried to warn me after they gave him a sudden bout of you know what. I don't even like candy that much. What was I thinking?!

Word to the wise: never eat those things. They give you the runs and facial creases.

The artwork is by Patti Warashina, a friend I haven't seen in years and a fine artist with a great sense of the ridiculous.