Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Slice of Life

Last night, Tanja and I were watching our Comedy Comfort Food (alternating episodes of Seinfeld and Frasier) when we come upon the episode “The Note” where Kramer sees Joe DiMaggio at Dinky’s Donuts and confides in the gang that he’s “a dunker” and an incredibly focused one at that. I resolved then and there that I wanted to dunk a doughnut, having never been a dunker myself, as when I was in Canada, the Mecca of doughnuts, I never drank coffee and most of the doughnuts I got were sweet or iced, not the dunking kind (go run-on-sentence!).


So this morning, I get up, I do my morning putterings, I’m ready to go at 8, I start work at 9. Usually, if I’m leaving at 8, I walk, and arrive right on time. Today, I auto-piloted to the train station and arrived at work 30 minutes early (again!). So I decided I had time to act on the doughnut dunkings.


Unfortunately, it being the dead week between Christmas and New Years, I had to walk six blocks over to find an open coffee shop that wasn’t a Subway. Standing in line, horrible soft rock ballad on the radio. The middle-aged woman ahead of me was singing along and confided in me that she “used to listen to this in High School and had it on vinyl.”  I was all mentally sneery and above-it-all, until No Doubt’s Don’t Speak came on. Which is a song I listened to in High School. I had the CD thanks to my mother being the only person in the world to be a long-term subscriber to Columbia House CD Mail-Order program. You know, the 9 CDs for a Penny thing that everyone did, and then never bothered to do again? She did it for years and years.


Also, while waiting, I finished watching Burn After Reading on my iPod. Really didn’t like it. Haven’t disliked a Coen Brothers movie this much since my first viewing of Raising Arizona (I don’t count Intolerable Cruelty or the Ladykillers, both of which I saw but had no strong feelings about).


Got my coffee, walked to work, picking up 6 hot cinnamon doughnuts on the way. Got to work. I dunked one in my flat white. Heavenly. It’s like French toast tasted when you were little. Or Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal (part of a balanced breakfast).


I shared the joy of hot cinnamon doughnuts and dunking with various people around the centre.


Happy New Year.


Lucas Brown | Team  Leader - 42

Saturday, December 20, 2008


Freedom from pain! Yes, friends, after 35 days straight of headaches, I am free from pain. It came to a head Friday when I woke up with a absolute humdinger. The entire left side of my head felt like it was going to fall off (and judging by how much I was hurting, I wouldn't have minded if it did).

So I went to the Doctor in the morning, making a 9:30 appointment. Got there at 9:25, but I didn't actually get to see the doctor until after 10. Why do I bother making appointments? So the doc sees me, and says I should get some physio. Okay, fine.

I call the University Sports physio that fixed my whiplash. They're closed until January for Christmas. Same situation with a few other places I call, some until February, even. February! That's a nice long Christmas break! So I get a recommendation from a workmate of Tanja's for a place on Erskineville road. I go there, but they’re all booked. I sign up for the cancellation list and just make it home when I get a call that there’s an opening.

So here’s what the physio guy said was wrong with me: all the little muscles that connect my neck to the base of my skull are all knotted up and scrunched together. These snarls put pressure on the bones of my skull, keeping them from their natural movement and locking them together. The lack of natural movement causes a build-up of pressure, which causes pain and headaches. Think tectonic plates locking together and causing LA-rattling earthquakes.

So he, using some high-pressure massage, pushed back the snarled neck muscles one at a time, letting them fall back into place where they usually sit. I was sore the rest of the day from the manipulations, but as of Saturday, fine! It may not be permanent, and I may need some remedial physio, but I am one relieved guy.

I am also a relieved guy with a new 32 gig iPod touch! Tanja got it for me for Christmas. It’s got Wifi, web browser, pop-up keyboard, it takes applications from the App store, and has a huge widescreen video screen. I like it a lot. I’m now in the process of streamlining my 13000 song play list to fit on the new iPod and phew! I have a lot of stuff I’ve never listened to.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Suck It, monkeys! I've gone corporate! (reposted from the Lucas Letters)

"So yeah. We've been back, and as the title suggests, I am no longer a spanner in the works. I am now a cog in the machine. In English? I am now the team leader of the mighty juggernaut that is 42. It's the team I came from and it's the team I know best. I also know it's thanks to their glowing feedback and stunning performance when I was ATLing that I got the job. I find that now that I'm an official team leader and not just a long term ATL or a fill-in, my view of the centre where I work has changed. People that were the bane of my existence are now either on the same level or a step below, and so I no longer have to take their crap or leave them unchallenged. Not that I'm in it only for the revenge, of course. There's also a slightly better chair.

Bought a new pillow day before last. It's due to my 20-days-of-headache that I had throughout the honeymoon, and the fewer, but still noticeable times I've had since I came back. Tanja and I each have a moulded neck-support pillow that, while looking like a university-lounge couch cushion, provides the support so our spines aren't ripping themselves to bits while we sleep. However, it does take some getting used to. Night before last when I tried it for the first time was awful. Waking up every hour or so and then a giant massive migraine in the morning. Last night was way easier, so I think it's just my body reacting.

Speaking of my body reacting, the first two times you go to the gym after a near 3-week absence? Expect to hurt the next day. Yeah.

Tanja's been hopping back and forth to the mountains lately, to help out with her mum. I've been going up too, but I always feel like the proverbial fifth wheel, just sitting there until someone asks me to do something. I'm giving support, though, so that's the important part. Overseas Christmas presents have been sent, and most of the local ones have been picked up. Even though it's 2 weeks to Xmas, I don't feel particularly holiday-like.