Archive for June 2012

Mahwegde… ith whut bwings uth togethah toodayyy   Leave a comment

ok, so for those of you that cant read that title it says- Marriage is what brings us together today. its from The Princess Bride. you remember the priest guy who was going to marry Humperdink and the Princess? He goes on, “Wuv… twue wuvvv…”. so anyhoo when i hear the word marriage i immediately think of that guy who sounds like he had his tongue glued to the inside bottom of his mouth. and it was me that mentioned marriage. to myself.

i wanted to blog again so i just started typing about what came to mind. gotta be honest with you… i am kind of obsessed with marriage. one of my best friends gets married next week and then i get married one month after that.

what a scary exciting thought! ok yeah i am kinda nervous. in my mind it is like as if my hott lady is going to climb down a cliff, using a rope, and i am the one holding the rope at the top. if i let go she gets hurt. we are stepping up to the edge and about to tie the rope around her. oh oh!! maybe thats what they mean about tying the knot! prolly not. pretty sure thats not what they mean at all.

can i stop and switch gears for a second? everyone keeps calling me Mike. why do people think my name is Mike? At first it was just one lady at the deli, but now it is other people. the funny thing is, she must not have looked at my debit card even one time in all of the hundreds of times i’ve purchased NOS water from her. my name is john. it was never mike. do i look like a mike? can i at least be Iron Mike, or Michael Angelo, or Mikey Muscles or something like that? I prefer john though. it has served me well. it is very flexible and useable in all situations when you make it johnny_______.

back to marriage. so here we are approaching the date and i wish i could say it is just amazing. notice i said JUST amazing, because it is at least partly amazing. sarah is wonderful. could not ask for a better girl. and every day she is becoming a better sarah than she was the day before. certainly could not ask for anything better than that.

as we get closer to the date it is kind of good for the nerves that people give us stuff. her parents got us a sweet grill. i love kitchen stuff sooo much. and like i always say, “a great marriage starts with a good guy and a good grill”. ok well sarah actually said that. i just started saying it. but she said it first.  

it is a little nerve wracking thinking about the ultimate commitment. i just wish that wedding rings were magical. i wish that when you put them on all of a sudden your own desires kind of fade away and all you can think about is making her happy. i wish that all of a sudden your eyes only saw her as attractive instead of females in general being attractive. i wish the thought of kids was purely exciting and didnt carry with it concerns for loss of sleep and money and boogery colds and no more alone time. mostly it is that all of that is an overwhelming responsibilty that i have avoided for almost 38 years.  

for me it is just focus. right now i need to just focus on this time, which is fun, and the time when we are married and it is just us. and most of all, i need to focus on the One who says that if i seek Him all of the rest comes into its proper place. the One who gives us love and gently helps us to love. the One who asks me to treat her the way that i want to be treated. the One who reminds me that as much as i hold her rope she is also holding my rope.

i am very thankful to the pioneers that have come before us; her parents and mine, and for those around us that are making it work when it seems it hardly ever works.


Posted June 29, 2012 by john b in philosofickle

June 27 – A perfect day for asparagus   Leave a comment

well it is blog time again. i don’t really have any one thing that will be the theme of this blog. i have had a few things tickle my fancy lately (my friends know that i have an extremely ticklish fancy). and well, my friend nick mieney is dogging me to write so here is my blog in nick’s honor.

yesterday i went grocery shopping and realized something about myself. i can be thinking- “gee whiz im in a great mood cuz i found everything i was looking for in the store and the sun is shining and for the first time in my life i actually think some babies are cute and i cant wait to tear into this pomegranate greek yogurt”, then go the self checkout section (i am very independent to the point of offending people that try to be helpful), and lose my good mood in seconds. so i can be in the amazingly good mood, but when i scan that first item, and am putting it in the bag, and the computer voice tells me to put it in the bag not even a second after i have scanned it… i swear i cant control the expression my face makes. i reeeeeaaaallly want to smash that stupid machine.

seriously i need to work on that stuff.  i get derailed pretty easy some times. the problem is the primer to that situation. you know when you walk up to the self checkout area (no i am not talking about the mirrors by the dumbells at the Y where the guys check out themselves, i am referring to the machines at Tops) and there are a couple of people waiting, but as I am standing about 3 people back i realize that one of the 6 checkout machines is actually open but the person at the front of the line hasn’t noticed yet. ok sorry, that was the longest, worst sentence ever written.

but yeah, the checkout is wide open but the person hasnt noticed. so that is the first test. i usually pass that test rather easily. i over-ride my natural instinct to roll up a nearby magazine and hit them in the back of the head. no i am not cruel. i wouldn’t use a cosmo mag. i would grab a slightly thinner and lighter mag-rag that has a cover claiming that tom cruise is having an affair with a time-travelling fan from 2025 who saw the Mission Impossible movies and liked them (but doesnt like Vanilla Sky at all and wonders why he made it but still loves him enough to travel back in time and have an affair with him).

 so yeah, i kind of chuckle off the clueless shopper and step up to the next free checkout machine. then i scan my first item and the voice says “please put the item in the bag” before i can get it into the bag. instant sour mood. like using a sour patch kid for a suppository. you know, those super-sour candies that make your eyes flutter and half close and your cheeks quiver.

i am still generally in a good mood most all of the time. i love the summer. my thing is that when i lose that good mood, cuz i got irked, it usually brings out a rather extreme response from me.

lately i have been thinking a little more violently. i hope this blog isn’t used as evidence later after i have gone postal and people say this was the first signs.

like, for instance… (oh ps, never start a sentence with “like, for instance”)  

i think that politicians that obstruct items that would be for the good of the country, but are not from their party or would otherwise not serve them personally, should be shot for treason. im serious. the politicians we have now dont care about the country. they care about the advancement of their political party. we need an impartial board who reviews the actions of our government officials without knowing their names or party and determines whether their actions are selfish or without regard for the people. then the penalty is imprisonment or their legs. they can choose.

soccer players who flop on the ground, pretending to be hurt, should be trampled by all players still standing. or, upon video review by a panel of hockey players, they can be subjected to a beating by the opposing team.

so thats a couple of thoughts i’ve had recently. oh and i have been eating asparagus today, hence the title.


Posted June 27, 2012 by john b in oh ssstop, philosofickle

Insane Coworkers   Leave a comment

Well, I have been trying to keep smiling and be polite all day as my boss and coworkers do their best to drive me to the point of drowning myself in the drinking fountain. I have reached my blogging point. You know, the point where you simply must complain, so you go online, and since you are sick of people complaining on facebook you just blog cuz that is way more classy. riiiight.

At any rate, I though you all (and by all I mean the 5 of you that read this blog) might get a kick out of the text conversation I have been having with my boss.

First let me share the breaking point. It came when, during my insane text conversation with my other boss, my coworkers at the YMCA told me that I had to clean up the lockerroom because someone had left the steam-room door open and the steam had made the floor all wet. So the lady who is the maintenance person on duty gave me a mop and mop bucket full of hot soapy water. To clean up the water on the floor. Cuz everyone knows that if you add water to water it cancels itself out and becomes dry. What. The. Heck. REALLY? You want me to mop with water to make the water go away?! “Yes your honor, that is when I blogged.”

So here is the text conversation regarding me helping to deliver and set up an electric piano to a woman in Churchville. I will include all typos and weirdness. This is exactly as I received it.

Boss- is it possible to early to the piano tom am?thurs

Me- What time?

Boss- iyou could name rhe time..the ouano is here..upbox at the house..if you could go then i would call dean..anytime..i would pass on the other guy moving

Me- I could meet them there at ten

Boss- ok i will call him and see if  we line this up..i will let you know thanks

Me- Ok

Boss- ok dean can go..would like to meet dean at churchville at the ladys house and tell me the and i will have there with the piano

Me- Ok just text me the address when you have it

Boss- (Address) would that work best for you and what time could meet the guys with the pino on the truck at her

Me- Ten

Boss- are coming back to you think you should help the two guys load it on the truck and will ride with them..this will be a good paying gig

Me- It is in a box?

Boss- yes

Me- They can load it im sure. i wld rather just meet them. it wont take 3 guys to put it on the truck.

Boss- i could get some one to help on this end  what time to meet tou tom at the lahys house and i will confirm

Me- Ten

Boss- so what is the plan …you meet there or here  and what time

Me- If you really think we need 2 movers plus me to load a box then i will meet them at the store at 930 and go out from there. otherwise i will meet them at the house at ten am.

no answer yet.

Then the mopping begins and ends and the blog is written. I feel better now thank you! Well, until tomorrow when I have to deal with this all.


Posted June 13, 2012 by john b in oh ssstop

I will meet you half way. Or two 3rds. Or…   Leave a comment

Have you ever taken the time to learn something, or accomplish something, and have people ask you to show them or teach them, but you just know that they aren’t really serious?

I am not really awesome at anything. The few things that I have reached a degree of competancy in required a lot of work, and errors, and experimentation. One is the guitar, the other is fitness.

I don’t look exactly like I would like to, but I have been at it for a long time and have learned quite a bit both by design and by accident.

As far as the guitar goes… I have spent sooo many hours both sitting by myself and playing with others to become proficient as a musician.

So when someone comes along and asks me to show them, or teach them, or train them, or just get them to where I am at, but they don’t want to do any work… that kind of gets to me.

Athletic training is definitely one area that is rewarding to me, but it is also VERY frustrating. Very few people get fit and stay fit. Look around you. Most of the population is overweight and about a third of those people are obese. And that’s not even talking about the people who are weak or small and want to have muscles.

So when people come to me for training or advice, and I have seen no level of commitment from them, it is frustrating. I have given up an incredible amount of time to cook, research, lift, run, bike, walk, hockey, workout, study, supplement… its a big sacrifice. So when a person wants me to take time to train them, but they are not willing to even just go for a walk on their own… should I take them seriously?

Fitness is just movement. I’m serious. That is all it is. Just moving. If you want, just add resistance to your movement. Or move fast. Or a combination of fast and slow, with and without resistance. It isn’t magic. I have learned certain movements and can group movements together to achieve a certain goal, but if you want to lose weight then MOVE. You don’t need certain clothes or shoes. You just need to move.

By the way… here is some tough love for my friends: Lean is better looking than fat. It just is. No one EVER has said, “Wow! Did you see ____? He is a lot heavier and looks great!” Lean means you worked. Lean means commitment and determination. Fat means the opposite. If you want to be attractive and/or healthy, get lean. If you complain that you don’t have a girl/guy who calls you sugarlovemuffin, then get lean! There may be other issues but at least get that one out of the way!

And don’t wait to meet up with a trainer. Just move. Um… and stop eating that. You know what I am talking about.

The guitar… I don’t think I will ever give lessons for free. Free lessons means no commitment. That almost insures that I would be wasting my time. I need to see some level of dedication to learning, and some respect for the learning I have done. That’s fair isn’t it?

I LOVE to give advice or just talk with people about things like music, exercise, books, adjectives, or whatever! But I like to do those things with people who are motivated. There is nothing worse than being in a conversation and realizing that the conversation is just wasted time. That is a horrible feeling. If I have wasted your time in the past, I am sorry.

Posted June 6, 2012 by john b in oh ssstop

A Drive, A Moon, A Thought   Leave a comment

You know how sometimes a thought sticks with you? It rests below the surface and occupies your quiet moments. Since quiet moments are few it is not always there, but it is persistent enough. Then, something waters it and causes it to grow enough to poke through the surface and into view for others… in a comment or blog or casual conversation.

And so it happened that I was driving home, and the quiet night, with the largest moon I can ever remember, nudged me into thought, and then into writing.

What do we know? What do we believe that we know? Or, what is it that we believe that we know and are so quick to tell or not tell at all. I don’t mean to be ambiguous. What I am getting at is actually pain and suffering.

People that are christians, or are otherwise religious, believe in God, or a god, but when something tragic happens those same people might decide that they don’t believe in God after all. Which is kind of confusing because if God exists, and you believe that, and then you decide that he doesn’t exist, then it might be that you are choosing to not believe when in fact you do belive but you are angry because God is not who you thought He is. He did not live up to your expectations. But that is another thought entirely.

I am speaking of foundations. You see, to believe in a God, makes you see everything a certain way. That belief dictates your standards and morals and world view, and even the way you are to other people. It is a foundation to your life. The same can be said of the belief that there is no God. That is a foundation as well. That foundation is what your whole of thinking, and believing, and acting is built upon. To say or act otherwise is to go about your life without looking down at your intellectual, spiritual, and moral supports. And that is my real point. It is not enough to believe something. How do you KNOW that you believe what it is that you believe that you believe?

What is your foundation? Do you even know? CAN you even know? I think you can. You know how you find out? A flood. A raging flood… of pain. Of anguish. Of hurt that bends you to near breaking. The thing that happens that makes you look up and say “why?” Why would this happen? How could You let this happen? If You are real, and You cared, this would not be.

Those moments, in an instance, wash away all that is not deeply rooted. Everything that is a decoration of your everyday life is gone: sports, food, facebook, phone, tv, work, coffee, cookies… everything. What is left?

Your foundation.

Do you have one? And is it what you thought is was? Is it strong or will it wash away and be crushed among the the things?

I think (and I wish I could write this with the smallest text that whispers the words from the page to you so that you would know how cautiously I want to say this)  that those moments are the most invaluable moments of our lives.

How can you know who you are without those moments? What do you believe? I don’t think I can answer that question honestly without going through a flood. Or 2.

Why this thought John?

I have been dreading one of those moments that I speak of. It is coming and I cannot stop it. I think about it often and wonder how I will act. How I will respond.

Yesterday morning I got out of bed and looked into the living room of my house. I could see my dad on the couch slumped to one side, napping.

My dad is in his 70’s. He has smoked since his teenage years and still does. He has hernias that need surgery but he will not go back and get them done because he did that before and sitting in a hospital doing nothing for days is not an option. So he wears the support belt they gave him and just goes about his days.

How much more time do I have with him? A couple of years at very best? Tomorrow only?

He was napping it seemed. I walked up to him and watched his chest to see it rise and fall with breath. It didn’t rise. In the next second my thoughts turned to the house. How would I pay for the mortgage? How would I care for my retarded younger sister? How would I even go to work for the next day? Week? Weeks? And then not pay my bills.

That second passed and his chest rose and then fell with another breath.

We all get those moments. Are they times for blame? For learning? For seeking, or casting away? All of the above?

Posted June 6, 2012 by john b in philosofickle

Older = Slower   Leave a comment

I realized this past winter that I had been letting myself believe the excuses I was telling myself. I am kind of ashamed of it really. I am 37 yrs old and my left knee and left shoulder both hurt a bit. I used that as an excuse to not push myself very much in the gym. This past year I started pushing harder and found out that I am every bit as strong now as I was 7 years ago when I was at my best. That bugs me cuz I have wasted a couple years just kind of coasting along; not getting worse but also not getting better.

But now… 

I have been trying to get in to the Batavia Men’s Hockey League (BMHL) for 2 years. There are only so many spaces in the league so I have to wait for retirees, injuries, movers ons, and such. Last year I went to the draft to see who would be playing on each of the teams. I know a bunch of guys in the league so it was of great interest to me.

While we were at the draft, a couple of guys I know found out that they had dropped in rank from the previous year. That means they were rated as a worse player than the previous season. That HAS to be bad news to someone. And… it was. Neither guy took the news well. Both guys have complained about it throughout the season.

The thing is, neither guy wants to DO anything about it. We all age. With age comes decreasing ability to perform athletically. You HAVE to work hard to increase your ability and, as we age, work just to KEEP the ability we have.

I spoke to both guys this spring and asked what they were doing this summer to prepare for the season coming up. The answer for both was “nothing”, followed by excuses. In the same breath the complaint came out that they hope they didn’t drop any more in ranking.

That kind of made me happy. I know that sounds mean but y’know what? I want to play, and if they don’t want to work at it, then so be it. Let them drop, and when I get there I will be better then they will be.

Don’t you wish that everything you had the motivation to complain about you also had the motivation to change? I wish I did. Complaints come easy. In this particular case I happen to have the motivation to affect a change. I have some good friends who also share my same goals with the BMHL. It’s not enough to measure what is needed to remain the same and do just enough. If you aim for improvement then you probably will, and at least you are guaranteed to not decline.

With that in mind I kind of hope that many other guys in the BMHL have the same mindset as those 2 guys. I hope that they are relaxing and reminiscing about the previous season instead of working and dreaming of the upcoming season.    

I keep watching the guys in the league getting older, slower, fatter, drinkier, less hockier and more talkier. And thats fine with me.

Posted June 4, 2012 by john b in hockey