FishDreamer scribbles: It ain't over yet.

Sunday, 9 May 2004

Yoga, Money, Food, and a Movie

I promised a couple of people I'd report back on the Bikram yoga thing (hot room). I've done three classes now, and I intend to continue. It hurts, it's hot and horribly sweaty and I did indeed get faint and slightly nauseated the first two times (although not both at the same time, which is good). Today, I only got faint. Not sure if it had to do with the contents of my stomach, or if I'm getting used to it. But this time, I didn't get to that point I found both times prior, where I stood there (laid there) thinking, "Why the hell am I doing this to myself? This is awful." Didn't think that this time.

I did, however, have that post-class fabulous feeling. I used to get that after Jazzercise (TM) as well, although not as much. There is just something about making it through ninety minutes of difficult, strenuous poses in a hot room that brings out euphoria. I'll keep you all posted as I continue; I don't intend to go more than once a week and their package deals don't reward that so well.

Oh, and the poses are not the same as the hatha and iyengar poses I've done before. Similar, but the foot placement and alignment is different. And if you're thinking of trying it, know that the first half is standing and the second half is floor work. I wish I'd known that going in: it was right before the intermission that I started to get seriously faint and began to fear I wouldn't make it all the way through. You are also supposed to keep your eyes open the entire time, closing them only during corpse pose at the end. There are also breathing exercises at the beginning and end.

It was easier the third time. That's all I can say. I haven't lost significant amounts of weight, I am going into period week which could make a difference, and I ate two hours before to make sure I wasn't hungry during the class. And they do let you drink water, after the initial series of half moon poses.

I think one of my favorite results of doing Bikram is that I sleep fairly well after. It's 8:30 and I'm already getting sleepy. This is a good thing.

In other news, Mr D decided to tackle the book room today. This means that the floor in there is relatively clear, but all the stuff that got shoved in there because it had no home is still homeless, it's just piled under the house or on the beds. We have more clothes than two sane people ever need, so I am beginning the purge. Pants I don't wear because I don't like the fabric? Gone. Emergency back-up holey underwear and unsupportive bras? Gone. I'm pulling the woolens and putting them away for the summer, and I am planning to decimate my t-shirt collection. My only sorrow is that I'd been intending to take a picture in there to prove that I wasn't kidding about how bad it was, and now it's too late.

I can still take a picture of the dining room table though, as that has not been cleared. I shredded three grocery bags worth of bills and other incriminating evidence (anything with our name and address on it gets shredded), but didn't get near the table (which probably has at least another three bags full). And we have to get the table done in the next two weeks, because my dad is coming just in time for my birthday (yay, Dad birthday time!) and he likes to actually use the table for meals.

I probably would too, if it ever stayed clear long enough. We have a severe junk mail problem in this house, exacerbated by our mutual magazine addiction. I get about ten magazines a month, and Mr D gets at least another five, which puts us on every junk mail list in the country. Plus we donate to our favorite causes (Planned Parenthood, Electronic Freedom Foundation, Democracy for America, Scarleteen, and Chicklit, although I seriously doubt those last two get me on any mailing lists). He donates to a Linux group but I don't know which one, and I also donate to my high school and college alumni funds most years.

Point is not that we are philanthropists of any major degree, just that some of those places to which we like to give spare cash will send us mail asking for more on a fairly frequent basis. And that adds to the piles of mail.

I would really like to de-clutter my life. In order to do that, I must get rid of the things I don't need, and I must find a way to organize the things I do. We desperately need more bookshelves. We have been planning to purchase maybe a bookcase a month for quite a while, but the spare cash tends to get used up faster than we expect. Part of the reason my dad is coming is to help punch a door through from the kitchen to the garage, which will cost some money in materials. We also want to finish the garage so it's usable, which means putting a roof/floor above the doors so we have real storage there (instead of boxes laid across boards which are supported by the beams) and putting up insulation and drywall on the outer walls. That will cost money that I don't think we'll have this month, especially if we want to buy our plane tickets to his family gathering in July.

We also need an air conditioner for this summer, and if we don't get one soon there won't be any more in the stores. That's about the same cost as a bookcase, so we get to choose. (I vote air conditioner, I can live with books on the floor another month but I will die if I have to deal with the heat we had last year.) It's also my birthday, but we've decided not to have the Annual Unbirthday Barbecue this month. We're having a barbecue in June instead, for no reason other than we can. That's a pretty good chunk of change not being spent this month.

We'll see. I know there are areas where we can cut costs a bit, food being probably the biggest one. I also know that I am going to be seriously bummed when we run out of meat from our bulk purchase last September. We still have a bunch, and we sent some down to my brother recently because he's having a bit of money difficulty right now. But I haven't bought anything except one or two chickens since September. Think about that for a minute, all you non-vegetarian types. I don't even know how much a pound of hamburger costs anymore, because I haven't had to buy any in eight months. We won't make it back to Iowa for more this year, so I know we'll run out eventually. In the meantime, I still have some Italian sausage, we've barely touched the steaks, and haven't tried the ribs at all. That's for summer barbecue!

Mr D has finally hit on the method to get the neighbor to do something about her stupid dog. (I've written about this, haven't I?) The neighbors' daughter (who does not live there anymore, but does live within a mile of here) has a chihuahua (think Legally Blonde) which she likes to leave in their yard while she's at work. I know the woman behind us hates it, and it completely ruined our summer last year because if anything moves in any other yard, the stupid thing throws itself against the fence and goes into a frenzy of barking. It chases our cats into the house every single time it's there. (She thought that was pretty funny, the stupid little bitch.) We've spoken to them about it, our neighbor spoke to them about it, and nothing changed. She'd throw it in the yard and go in the house and ignore it, or come out and look around to see what caused the barking on occasion and then go back in the house. We spent almost no time in our yard last summer because of this stupid bitch and her barky little dog, and it drove the neighbor behind crazy.

So finally, about two weeks ago, Mr D had enough. It came out and flung itself against the fence separating our yards, barking like crazy at the cats and at me when I put out the recycling. Mr D went into the back yard, turned the hose on to focused blast (instead of diffused, which I use to water the garden), and drenched the stupid dog. It yelped and ran away, and (unlike the persistent barking that had preceded this) that brought the neighbor girl out of the house. "Don't spray my dog!" she shouted. Mr D calmly told her he would continue to spray until the dog was taken out of the yard so we didn't have to hear it and get chased out of our yard all the time.

We rarely hear it anymore, and if it starts to bark it is quickly taken inside. As far as I can tell, she doesn't drop it off before work anymore either (she lives in a condo, so no yard for it to bark in). It was out there again today, and chased the cats inside. Mr D went out, turned on the hose, and walked over to the fence. "Please don't spray my dog!" comes over. So doggy did its doggy business and then was taken back in the house. She's let it out two or three times since then, but only for brief periods so it can pee.

These are the same neighbors whose cats disappear after they grow up (because they're not cute kittens anymore, apparently). I don't care that they're from Europe (the parents, not the grown up children), because they moved here and they get to abide by the conventions of their adopted country. Actually, the parents have always been reasonable and friendly, it's just their stupid children who are a problem. Both in their twenties, both feel entitled to anything they want and have absolutely no regard for anyone or anything else. Stupid bitch is getting married, and I can't wait to see how the parties go. They always have their parties in their back yard, which keeps us awake all night while they shout and get drunk and smoke and play ping pong. I am no longer feeling like I will automatically ruin their rehearsal evening by calling the police if it lasts past midnight, since I haven't had to listen to barky the idiot dog constantly. I wonder if any of them thought about that?

I guess she finally figured out we weren't kidding about her shutting the stupid thing up. Too bad it took blasting the dog with cold water to do it, but it's not like we could blast her like we wanted to. I don't care if she hates us, I just wish she'd go away. I don't want to think about what will happen if/when she has kids.

In other news, I am full of burger right now (Mr D grilled out tonight) and for some reason I'm having a craving for Dobar Chicken (grilled chicken atop penne in a port and gorgonzola cream sauce). I think it's the gorgonzola that I want, but it will have to wait. I'm going to curl up with my book (oh, and Deborah, I found that book about Lama so I will be sending you a review some time in the next month - it was under a computer case in the book room), and prepare for bed. It's been a good weekend, and I am rested and ready to begin another week.

P.S. Let me throw in a good word for Van Helsing. I am not normally a consumer of movies, particularly not in theatres. But I found out David Wenham was in it, and that sold me on the idea. We saw it on Friday, and I laughed through the whole movie and most of the evening after. It does not have the strongest plot in the world, and the CGI is overdone, and it's cheesier than pizza. But the actors did a fabulous job, and it's really funny. The vampire babes spend their time writhing around and shrieking and acting all sexy-vampire-babe. Dracula (played by Richard Roxburgh who I was surprised to find out also played The Duke in Moulin Rouge!) chews up the scenery everywhere and is as overblown as he needs to be for the role. Kate Beckinsale is gorgeous in her tight pants and leather corset, David Wenham is hilarious as Friar Carl, and I can finally see why women find Hugh Jackman attractive (the hair helps, although it really doesn't help him hold on to any one accent for more than a line or two). The ending was poorly done, and had people laughing in complete disbelief, but I didn't let that throw me out of my happy amused movie feeling. I recommend it, particularly if you're in need of a good summer movie popcorn escape. If you are inclined to be critical of gaping plot holes and oozing cheese then don't bother, but it's pretty amusing overall. I thought it was well done and really enjoyed it.

(Think The Mummy, it has a similar feel and repartee among the main characters.) I'm a little tired of the pseudo-human CGI work in movies, but mostly it works. I know it's not real, and I just accept it as entertainment and move on.

Bed time. Welcome to a new week, everyone!

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