It has been a while since I regularly darkened the doorway of a gym. When I started working at the plastics factory I had been going to the gym almost daily. I was pretty strong, starting my preacher curl drop sets at 100 kilos.
12 hour shifts and life getting weird and moving away from the gym I really liked and and and I quit working out regularly.
Almost 6 years later and a new job with lots of travel all over the place. I am not a drinker and am not particularly social. Working out is, for me, a solitary recreation that is good for me.
So, while I am away from home visiting my mom, I went ahead and rejoined Planet Fitness. I’ve been in several of them, they’re clean, the equipment is in good condition, and they’re all over the place.
So now I am going to try and shift some weight around, maybe put on 20 (or more) lbs of muscle, and stay out of trouble while away.
Nothing really exciting going on, and I honestly prefer it that way. Years ago, I thought I wanted some excitement in my life. When all kinds of perturbations came along, I wanted them to all go away.
Some did for a while, some took a lot of work to get through, and the rest finally got over themselves and slunk off to some obscure corner to be happily forgotten. Not quite forgotten, the lessons remain. I’m not joking when I say I’ve been through hell and succeeded in coming out the other side. I’m the better for having gone through it all.
I can say that life is good. I’m not rich or famous like I wanted to be when I had many fewer years on the chassis. I have come to realize that if I was rich, all kinds of people I’d happier not having in my life would be coming around wanting to get into my pockets. If I was famous, other people I also would prefer not be around would all be digging into my business. Screw that noise. I’m poor, unknown, and happy.
I’ve got the best wife in the world. Seriously. We compliment each other on so many levels, including “my you look beautiful today”. We’re both adventurous, like camping, kayaking, and just being with each other. I can get lost in conversation with her for days.
When we met I was on the verge of giving up on everything. I hurt inside and out. Can’t have lived through as much “excitement” as I have and not suffered quite a bit of physical damage along the way. Fortunately, the lady I fell in love with also happens to be a very accomplished Chiropractor. It took several years to undo decades of damage, but at my advanced age and frail condition I outperform kids 1/3 my age at work. Granted kids these days don’t seem to have much “gumption” but give an old man the chance to boast a little 🙂
Got 2 great dogs whose company I prefer to most people I know. Maggie’s been with me 9 years and she’s the best grrl anyone could hope for. Merlin is way too smart, excitable, and a metric butt ton of fun. Within 36 hours of him meeting me he’d traveled over 3600 miles from El Paso, Tx to Pucallpa, Peru.
Got a couple cool hobbies that tie many of my interests together. Medieval armored combat means I have to make armor, be able to move well in it, stay fit enough to be a credible threat, and remain teachable. That’s me on the left.
The other hobby is beekeeping. It ties my interests in fairly precise woodworking, livestock management, and lying awake at night second guessing things I did days ago. Seriously, beekeeping is a way cool hobby that is guaranteed to keep you humble, and if you’re reasonably successful the rewards are sweet indeed.
So there’s a slice of where I’m at right now. Life is good.
Today was a mostly great day. Got to sleep in a bit. It was overcast but warm. Perfect day to paint the chairs for Kim’s clinic. We had cleaned them yesterday so they would be ready for paint today.
Did a minor Walmarting for last minute tarp and banana for the bunny. Dragged out the paint sprayer, laid out the tarp, and went to town. It’s been a while since I’ve sprayed anything. I was a technical service representative for a chemical manufacturer that made polyurethane spray foam for roofing, insulation, and many other things. Got to be a pretty good sprayer.
Sprayed a few chairs, showing Kim how then we took turns spraying. My lovely wife picked up spraying quickly. Was an eye opener for her. Kim likes to paint but had never sprayed before.
I received something I had ordered back in September. I of items was right. Pretty much right on as far as the message I want uninvited visitors to get.
After all the good things about today how could anything bum me out? Try a wastewater fountain in the basement. There was a clog in the pipeline. The sump pump kept cycling, and the vent pipe was where the fluid was escaping to splash on the floor to run back to the sump pump, repeat often. Many dollars later the plumber left.
Kim made a very tasty curry so in all today was a win.
So here I am at work on Thanksgiving. Many people would be unhappy about working today.
My take on this is I get to work on things I know need work but are not important in the eyes of the powers that be. Until they don’t work any more. We don’t have spares of them, and it takes at least a week or so to get one.
There’s nothing complicated, it’s just straightening and gusseting parts that aren’t made to be pushed on. Checking common wear points and ensuring the pieces that are supposed to move do, and the ones that aren’t, don’t.
I also have to make sure that all of the forklifts get put on the chargers so they will be ready to go when the plant starts back up in a couple days.
And I have to walk around the buildings and make sure that they’re not burning down. The nice thing about being a certified forklift operator is I don’t have to walk much because I can drive the forklifts instead.
Plus it being a holiday I’m getting paid holiday pay plus my regular pay so that’s an added good thing. I will trade a day that I was supposed to work anyways for extra money the ability to work on something I like to work on and be able to do it unmolested. I believe that to be a win for me all the way around.
So Happy Thanksgiving to all of you and while you’re digging into that turkey and stuffing and taters think of your friendly Mad Uncle Dave and give me a smile
Years ago, when the world was very sad, a group of us got together and formed what is known as the Full Moon Bus Club. The world has become less sad as a direct result of this!
What does this have to do with Mad Uncle Dave you may ask? We were already assigning nicknames to each other. I quickly figured out that I could let them dub me as something I might not care for, or I could generate my own. I saw my role as the not all there uncle, who the parents dread and the kids just love – avuncular, and seen as the free spirit of the group.
Fortunately, it stuck, and to this day, almost 20 years later, there are folks who only know me as Mad Uncle Dave, or MUD.
A brief history. The Full Moon Bus Club came to my attention at a bus camp-out known as High Country Bus Festival, held at Grandfather Mountain near Boone NC. The founder, “Snoopy” came around and asked if we’d be inclined to join his club. The nucleus of the club was based in Charleston SC, where I was stationed at the time. In no time flat there was 10 of us, camping on the weekends of the full moon – hence the name. We started several camp-outs, notably Edisto Freeze Your Toe, and Thanksgiving Misgivings. To this day, both of these camp-outs are celebrated. It gives me great satisfaction to know that around Thanksgiving each year, groups of people get together all over the country to share their love of VW buses and good food.
Another tradition I started was Breakfast Burritos. The breakfast Burrito is, imho, the world’s perfect group feeding proceeding. You can put almost anything in it, make it vegan, load it with meat and cheese, and it is easy to eat. The Full Moon Bus Club put on a breakfast burrito feed at High Country for years and it was a great success.