February 2009

Ugh, I am nauseated to an extreme from konking out early in the spare room and having a fitful, restless sleep haunted by conversations that never happened. *choke* You’d think people could just shake this stuff off, but I’ve so far been unable. So I thought I’d blog.

Work: We’re now engaged in a 3-4 week civil jury trial on a product liability case. The female plaintiff is suing the manufacturer of a pallet jack machine (kind of like one of those lawnmowers you can ride on, only it lifts pallets instead of cuts grass. You’ve probably seen one at Costco.) for taking off her feet. (You think YOU’ve had a bad day at work…least you got to keep your feet!)

Home: Mr. W is a defiant patient. He can’t sit still, doesn’t want to, and has been in an unfriendly mood due to the side effects of his medication. I was directed to tell him a story a judge in the building told me this morning, about just why patients are ordered not to exert themselves after a stent is put into a heart artery. Apparently, a new stent that hasn’t incorporated itself properly into the body yet can dislodge with strenuous exercise and “torpedo” into the heart. Instant death. Mr. W’s response: “Don’t tell me stuff like that! I was going to go back to the gym in a couple of weeks regardless of what the doctor said!” *sigh*

Dodo: Adorable. Furry. Perfect.

Me: Exhausted by day, insomniac by night. I’ve been aiming for a 9pm bedtime as in my short-term goals, but it feels like there is just not enough time in the evenings to get anything done! I’m usually able to be in bed by 9:30ish, but sleep doesn’t come just because I’m horizontal. I have been able to get out of bed by 6ish. Anticipation of a long drive in my great car listening to great stuff coming out of my speakers helps a lot. I’ve lost a couple of pounds on the scale, which really isn’t the goal, but I’ve also dropped some fraction of a percent in body fat, so I’m okay with that. (Yeah, my boobs are shrinking. Oh well.) I’ve managed to hit the gym every lunchtime this week except for today, when I had to work through lunch due to case complications. I hope to get in a long (3+ mile) jog this weekend to make up for it. I wish I had the iPod tuned up, but I’ll deal.

Elements of a great morning:
* being greeted by a furry miniature cow
* seeing abs through a sweater (it’s a thin fitted sweater and the right angle and lighting is required, but STILL.)
* having to change skirts because the first one has become way too roomy
* having a GREAT drive to work in my 300+hp car that I’ve greatly missed driving
* GREAT commercial-free music bumpin’ on the drive
* getting 30 mpg this trip
* leaving 15 mins later than usual and STILL getting in 90 minutes earlier than I need to.

I’d like to point out the biggest lesson from Mr. W’s recent experience.

People are consistently shocked that HE of all people had the heart attack episode, and I’ve been hearing lots of comments about, “Tell him to eat a burger and fries, cuz clean livin’ didn’t make a difference at all.” I think what people are not realizing here is that the clean living and gymming was something I made him do and he’d only started this 2 years ago. The first year of our relationship was his fighting me with comments like, “Healthy food? Yech. Organic? Sounds like bland and tasteless to me. Salt IS a flavor! Give me more salt!” But now, after laying off the crap for awhile, he realizes how much better he feels without chemicals in his body and his tongue is finally able to distinguish all the great actual flavors between ingredients. That’s the immediate advantage of cleaning up your food intake. (I’m still working on reduction of his espresso intake and alcoholic beverages, but at least he stopped the crazy energy drinks!)

In his situation, everyone in his family (both parents, all brothers) has a genetic predisposition for high cholesterol, hypertension. They’re on many prescription drugs to handle this. Some people’s livers just don’t handle cholesterol intake well — can’t filter it out, keeps producing more of it. Mr. W was determined to not get on meds, so he relied on maintaining his weight. You guys know he’s in great physical shape, which is NOT indicative of what’s flowing in his arteries. A 95% blockage in his main heart artery, plus 40-50% blocks in many different places in his body according to the operating cardiologist, means plaque build-up starting from his early 20s. If he wanted to rely on diet/exercise alone, he would’ve had to start way back then, not just two years ago.

Most health problems in people’s 40s and 50s start developing in the late teens, which is something I realized in college, so rather than count on the advent of a time machine in the future, I decided to take matters into my own hands early and do the preventative thing. I haven’t had fast food in years, and I can’t remember the last time I had a soda. I did eat at In-N-Out this month (my only exception to fast food because it’s fresher and less processed), but I only got the burger and skipped the fries and soda. I’m assuming most people don’t have the dramatic genetic predispositions of Mr. W’s family, so maybe you don’t quite have to go back SO FAR in time to make a difference. I’m gonna say, DO IT NOW.

Don’t have a future day of, “If I only knew then what I know now.” You KNOW. Do it.

1.) Drop 1.5% body fat. (Now that I’ve reached the weight I want, I’m still not happy with certain areas of flab and I think 22% body fat is generous enough. But knowing my body, if I succeed in ridding 1.5% it’ll all come off my boobs. *sigh*)
2.) Go to bed at 9pm. (I expect to be laying there bored and fully awake for hours. And I’ll sorely miss my 11pm “Friends” episode.)
3.) Get up in the mornings at 6am. (That’s only half an hour earlier than I get up now anyway. Plus I’m gonna need the extra half hour as I’ll be driving alone to work for the next couple months and I won’t have the benefit of the carpool lane.)

Goal deadline: end of April, 09.

Cuz, Florida, here I come! =) (Jordan better have already put in for the time off like she said she would.) There’s a 3-hour time difference between CA and FL, and I don’t want my gracious hostess to be all exhausted as I’m still bouncing around going, “Come ON! It’s only 9pm in California! Let’s go DO something!” We expect to run around Disney World, etc. like a couple of crazy people, taking photographic evidence of our antics. Oh, that reminds me:

4.) Stay healthy and uninjured. (Yesterday, my parents came over and played Wii…

and I watched them from my vantage point at the top of the stairs. Occasionally I’d hear an “OW!” from my mom when my dad accidentally punched her during Wii boxing, and he’d say, “Look where you’re standing! You started THERE and now you’re in my space HERE!” So my mom would hop to her right a few steps. And then later I heard shouts of “Shoot Obama! You gotta shoot Obama!” so I went again to investigate. Turned out they were playing a target shooting game against each other and my dad was using an Obama Mii and my mom was Charlie Brown. I thought I’d warn them to keep their voices down before the Secret Service or FBI come blasting in our front door, but first I bent to sit on the top of the stairs, and somehow in bending forward I almost plunged headfirst down the stairs. I saved myself and regained my balance quickly, looked down and saw everyone was too absorbed in the Wii gaming to have noticed me, and retreated back upstairs into the bedroom. =P My hands were tingling from my near-death experience for the next few minutes.)

Because we got kinda fired up at the last post, here’re some pictures I took earlier in the month (before all that stuff happened) to bring back the peace. See SoCal after all the rain we got this month!

Big clouds over our mountains.

See that white behind the McDonald’s? That’s SNOWY MOUNTAINS, yo.

A buddy visited and we took a boat ride on the Lake.

This is Jordan’s house, straight ahead.

Don’t you want to lay on those boat seats you see here? 🙂

Mr. W is now spending his 2nd night in the hospital after what turned out to be a heart attack yesterday at work. This evening he underwent an angioplasty which the operating cardiologist explained to me afterwards opened up the main heart artery which was blocked 95% through a long segment and a 3-4 inch stint was placed in that artery to keep it open. Mr. W was in a lot of pain coming out of the procedure so after a dose of morphine, he started dozing off. So I left.

I wasn’t even sure how to blog about this, and this post would’ve taken on a very different tone, except 3 minutes ago when I turned on the computer, an email notification came though. I didn’t read the email, but the notification displays the first 10 or so words, and it’s from his ex-wife in one of her infamous rude demeaning emails demanding money. I just absolutely lost it. I went upstairs immediately and texted Daughter, “Can you please have your mom lay off the emails? Your father is still in the hospital after his heart attack. Thanks.” I’ve been keeping both kids updated with their father’s situation, making it as non-dramatic and factual as possible. So I’m sure the ex-wife knows about the situation, and she thinks it’s appropriate to write this email. Now all the past insistence I had to stay out of their business just went out the window. She can interpret it however she wants. If she wants to be nice she can read it as an FYI that he’s not getting the emails because he’s still in the hospital. But if she has a conscience she’ll read it as it’s intended: learn about propriety, bitch. There’s a time and a place. Your money is of no importance.

We had a very exciting Sunday! We (Mr. W, his daughter, and I) went to James‘ home studio to play with and record one of the stepkidlet’s original songs. This is her first studio session ever, and the first she’s heard other instruments added to her music. First, Daughter did her scratch track by playing the acoustic part and then singing over it.

James did his technical magic.

James then composed and added drums. I can’t remember why Daughter would be singing as he’s doing bass, and he doesn’t, either. Weird. Maybe he’s just using her voice as a guide.

Check this stuff out. Virtual percussion!

After the drums were added, James picked up his bass guitar. An awed Daughter looks on.

James composed a kick-ass bass line. I still hear it in my head when I’m trying to go to sleep.

James had to pick up Daughter’s chords to match up his accompaniment. It was amazing to watch this exchange happen. They were like two Palm Pilots lined up on their infrared ports to sync.

Strum strum.

And THEN, after recording the bass guitar line, James ran over and picked up his electric guitar and composed another dimension on the song!

The finished product was FREAKIN’ AWESOME. I’ve had it stuck in my head all weekend. The song was already catchy as is, and now it’s just unforgettable. James is now thinking, forget American Idol, we’re looking at a future Grammy. After the song is copyrighted, depending on how Daughter feels, we may put this song for sale with iTunes to get her name out there. What an amazing thing for Daughter and James to have hooked up this past weekend. We’re just watching doors open everywhere.

It’s not even 9am yet, and this is how the day started:

* We left late. (My fault, cuz I suddenly remembered that I have to dress up since I’m assigned to a criminal court today.)
* After getting to work, I realized I don’t have my court keys or my badge. (Mr. W’s fault; when I had the day off yesterday for Lincoln’s birthday holiday he drove to work on his own and moved my stuff in his car and didn’t tell me.) So I couldn’t retrieve my stamps from my desk (locked), get on the employee elevators (special elevator key needed) or get around at all. I was SO PISSED because this has happened before and it’s always a major inconvenience.
* Someone had been at my desk yesterday and moved stuff around, and made a half-ass effort to return things to their original locations. Things were misplaced, and my photos on the corkboard were moved and someone pushed pushpins through the center of photos and through other photos! I NEVER puncture my photos, especially not ones I don’t have the negatives for and therefore can’t reproduce. And they pushed a pin through a Polaroid!! *grinding teeth*
* After finally getting to the criminal calendar court I am assigned to today, I tried unsuccessfully to log in the computer but realized that the keyboard did not work. At all. Totally nonresponsive. A slew of cussing later (I think I bewildered a bailiff who was just passing through), I traced the keyboard line and reset it manually and got it working.
* I have cramps. Owie.

The bailiff who caught the fire of my morning came through a few minutes later to check on me, and after I apologized for his seeing me in a non-professional moment, he reminded me that today is Friday of a long weekend, and that it’s also payday. He promised it’ll be better from now on.

He also pointed out it’s Friday the 13th. Figures!

Since I started this post I was involved in solving the mystery of 3 defendants in custody that the sheriffs department brought to this courtroom who aren’t on calendar.

Victoria’s Secret is giving out a little box of Godiva chocolates free with any $60 purchase. That seems cool and romantic, especially for those guys wanting a little sweetness for Valentine’s Day. “Look honey, I got you skimpy lingerie I want you to wear in the middle of February AND chocolates!” But to me, it’s just sort of an odd combination that feels mutually exclusive. Either you want me to look hot in “fabric” held together by four molecules of nylon and lace, OR you want me to eat chocolate. You can’t have both.

This is like the “emergency meeting” called yesterday at work, which was announced via email only hours from lunch, that required us to meet 15 minutes before the close of our regular lunch hour. That means I had to skip the gym again, so I sat at my desk and worked on divorce cases through lunch. More time was spent passing out gourmet cupcakes to all the coworkers than on the actual meeting; our supervisor wanted to give everyone a treat for upcoming V-day because today (Thursday) is Lincoln’s birthday holiday and many people took Friday before Vday off, opting for a 5-day weekend with Vday on Saturday and Monday’s President’s Day holiday. I just eyed the huge chocolate cupcakes with pink frosting that easily doubled the height of the cupcake itself. I had to skip the gym to be here; I can’t eat cupcakes, too!

My courtroom assistant enjoyed her cupcake, as did the front of her shirt.

Because Dodo sensed that I needed a little silliness in my life, he made sure that when I looked over, I saw this:

It took a few tries to get this picture, because I was laughing (silently) so hard that my hands were shaking. I didn’t want to wake him, as he was also audibly snoring. I adjusted the exposure on my cameraphone and tried again, from a lower angle.

“zzzzz.” Yes, his head’s upside-down, chin up in the air. One last one for the road:

Cats and the coriolis effect. Animals are such a joy.

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