Taking Control

I’ve come to realize that one of the major contributors to my lack of happiness is the feeling that I’ve let control of my life slip away. I’m taking major steps at returning control, it’s becoming expensive, but is also rebuilding the foundation upon which I’ll live the rest of my life.

Rebuilding My House, Rebuilding My Life
My house has been one of the major out-of-control factors in my life. I’ve mentioned recently getting AT&T U-Verse installed (so far I love it!).

Soon I plan on redoing my inside phone wiring (trying hard not to fuck up my U-Verse install), install a new security system, have my gutters cleaned (some day soon I hope), have my deck restained (I have an estimate, just waiting on the gutter cleaning), replace the spigot on the back of the house which hash leaked and had its handle crumble, and install at least two new windows (with the thought of replacing most if the cost doesn’t cause me to shit myself).

Later this year I plan on finishing my insulation task (and while up there potentially rewire part of the house), fix the cracked living room ceiling, repairing the sink in my bathroom so that people who use the bathroom can wash their hands in the sink as instead of the tub (good thing I don’t have many visitors), get some quotes on repairing and replacing the rotted wood on my soffit, and paint all of the wood and iron work on house.

Oh, and then there’s that minor nit with the plumbing.

It sure sounds really expensive as I type this. It also sounds like I won’t be selling my house this year after all. Too much to fix, and when I do I’m not sure that I want to turn the house over to someone else immediately. Yeah, I’m scared as hell by this.

It’s not all building/repairing however. I am still in the process of culling a bunch of things I no longer, or never, needed. And finally, I’m working on setting up a small photo “studio” for the purpose of doing product photography.

1/2″, 3/4″, Whatever It Takes
Imperial vs Metric
VHS vs Beta
Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD
1/2″ vs 3/4″

Why must there always be competing standards? At Home Depot I had to buy two spigots, one for 1/2″ piping, the other for 3/4″ piping, because I do not know which my house has; of course I plan to return the one which does not work, but why do we have two pipe diameter standards?

And some questions for you plumbers out there: I’m assuming this spigot has been connected to the house for over fifty years. What precautions (other than turning off the water) do I need to take? Should the spigot come off with a wrench or will I need other equipment?

ITP Flickr Pic
Mine is a take off on using binder clips for cable management. For years I struggled with the hassle of losing cables behind my desk. For a while I used magnetic bulldog clips, but the magnets weren’t strong enough to guarantee that the weight of the cable wouldn’t pull them off.
Cable Management
Sorry for the shitty photo, but you get the idea.

An Almost-Vegetarian Day
I didn’t have a grilled pork sandwich at Lee’s Bakery last night while doing laundry. I had two grilled pork sandwiches at Lee’s Bakery last night while doing laundry. The first sandwich was delivered on a fresh-from-the-oven bun and was nearly orgasmic.

Up until I made the sandwich decision at Lee’s I had been having a vegetarian day, eating cereal for breakfast and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch. I wanted to remain vegetarian but the lure of a Banh Mi won out.

As penance for my double delight I went for a little walk while waiting for my wash to finish. I walked passed the new(ish) Havana Restaurant and the Pirates’ Pub (with a sign outside indicating that it’s owned by the former owners of Fuzzy’s Place). I think that I’ll have to find time to try both places out at some time in the future.

A Non-Smoking Show At The EARL? Well Alright!
I’ve had a ticket for tonight’s Shearwater show at The EARL for some time. Yesterday I received an email alerting me that this show will be a non-smoking show. W00t! If you’ve ever seen a show at The EARL you know that it’s a lot like seeing a show inside the smokequarium at the airport, enter smelling okay, exit smelling like an ashtray.

I’ll be wearing jeans and a black t-shirt tonight. I’m debating on toting the camera with me. If you see me (which should be a lot easier without cigarette smoke billowing everywhere), please say hello.

Stats & Goals
Current Mood – my knees are sore (and I haven’t either exercised) otherwise just feeling plump
Current Music – listing to the “Sound Of Young America” podcast
Website Of The Day – While in Florida over Christmas I passed a building and recalled that it used to be a Sambo’s restaurant that we ate at when I was a kid. Not many people know of Sambo’s which is why I laughed aloud when I stumbled upon Tim Putz Presents Sambo’s Photographs yesterday.
Mode Of Transportation To Work – my car
Exercise (b)Log – nothing
Morning Weigh-In – 203 pounds
Pages Of 1001 Paintings You Must See Before You Die Read – 52

Foot Mileage – ~4 miles, Wheel Mileage – 0 miles
Pushups – 0, Situps – 20
Consecutive Days Of Bed-Making (Longest Streak) – 3 (19)
Vegetarian Days – 3, Carnivorous Days – 20
Marta Rides – 0

March Goals
– Not get fired from my job
– Ride my bicycle no fewer than 100 miles
– Get the new LLC moving…

2010 Goals
– Reduce my weight to 185 pounds (starting weight was 198 pounds)
– Completely read the book 1001 Paintings You Must See Before You Die
РEarn at least $150 through photography sales in order to cover the cost for the renewal of the Jalape̱o Beach SmugMug account I opened the other day.
– Save $500 for the sole purpose of donating to charitable organizations of my choice
– Attend at least one professional photography workshop
– Enter no fewer than three photographic competitions / gallery showings
– Get the Black Sheep stats out of Excel and online
– Ride in no fewer than two 50 mile or 50K bike rides
– Complete my Taco Mac Passport requirement of 125 beers

The Unmeasurable
– Continue backing up all data, including the off-site storage
– Become a proficient programmer in PHP and CSS
– Do not create a solution for something which is not a problem

Paulie [eatl/ga]

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21 Responses to Taking Control

  1. sal says:

    I commend you in your task to take control. If I could just take control of all the useless clutter, it would be a huge improvement.

    I can’t give you any advice on the plumbing but it brought to mind this billboard on I-75 that cracks me up…….. “Licensed Plumber on Doody.”

  2. Thanks Sal.

    I’ve been fighting the clutter problem in my house (and I’m the only one living there!) and finally am starting to feel like I’m winning. 🙂

  3. Barb says:

    Replacing all the windows will be pricy, especially if you go with good ones. But – I got the full $1500 rebate on my taxes (not that it is really any consolation, but it is better than nothing.)

    so, Pirate’s Pub, is that where they put Zuffy’s & changed the name? Or, are there 2 places with people that used to work at Fuzzy’s?

  4. I’m not sure I’m ready to commit to all new windows (my house has 18 windows) — especially since of 5 them have burglar bars installed.

    Zuffy’s still exists. There are two places which claim Fuzzy’s heritage. Pirates’ Pub is in the new shopping center near the corner of Clairmont and Buford Hwy.

  5. Vic says:

    There are 2 Havana Restaurants on Buford Highway. One, simply called Havana, is owned by the wife and son of the previous owner(deceased). The other, Havana Grille, is owned by the his cousin, who was also one of the original founders of the one that burned. I’ve tried Havana, not Havana Grille yet.
    Good stuff. I’m sure you can’t go wrong with either!


  6. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that there are two new versions (competing standard) of Havana Restaurants. Thanks Vic.

  7. martha says:

    When I replaced my windows, I think it was between $125 and $150 per window, I installed them myself. It isn’t really very hard. All the work was done from the inside, so I don’t think the burglar bars will be an issue, I assume they are attached from the outside?

    From my own experience, getting those nagging little (and not so little) projects done around the house took away a lot of stress and anxiety. I know there is still more to do but every little bit helps.

    I have a question for all the ITP-runners. It looks like I may switch to the 1/2 at Flying Pig, I started training late as it was, then the foot/toe injury really set me back…so I’m looking for another marathon to run, probably late summer/early fall?

  8. Hmmm, I have no idea how my windows are installed. The burglar bars are on the outside of the window and are perma-screwed into the house. I’d certainly love to remove them, but we all know that East Atlanta is not there yet — see also my blog post from July 31, 2009.

  9. ***** OH YEAH!!! SURVIVOR WATCHERS *****

    Survivor is on tonight because college basketball is on tomorrow night.

  10. sal says:

    Martha: are you looking to travel or trying to find one close to home. You’d be hard pressed finding a marathon in the south during late summer due to the heat. Have you checked Marathonguide.com?

  11. Martha says:

    I don’t mind traveling like for a long weekend or so. I just checked out MarathonGuide (thanks for the info), I found two races in June. One in South Bend (I could combine it with at trip home) and one in NC.

    Probably don’t want to fly anywhere, so I may just need to hold out until the fall.

  12. Martha says:

    After a little more research I think I’ll skip the “Boggie Marathon” in NC…

  13. Steve says:

    There is a little marathon in July in NC, from Boone to Grandfather Mountain and you end by doing a lap on the track in front of 10,000 Scottish types at the Highland Games. And it’s mostly all up hill… other than that, it’s just another marathon. 😉


  14. Barb says:

    oh Steve – you make me want to start running again with that description…..

  15. Martha says:

    Sounds like fun…did you see my comment on St. Patrick’s Day? Just realized I’m Scottish and not Irish. Okay, I may be Irish also but the guy I thought was Irish really came from Scotland. It’s the same relative that I believe somehow makes Michelle and I distant cousins.

    They say South Bend is pretty flat and fast…plus its only about 2 hours from my sister, wonder if I could get them to come and see me?

  16. Lisa says:

    Should I be ashamed that I used to find it a HUGE treat to go to Sambo’s with my Grandmother when I was younger?? Those pictures bring back the memories… I’m hankering for some pancakes with tiger butter!

  17. Hahaha, that’s funny Lisa.

    Well, the house fights back (again): The gutter guys are out cleaning it and they’ve quoted me a price of $325 to repair it; to me this seems very high-priced. I’m going to have to think about this more… 🙁

  18. Barb says:

    depends on how much needs to be repaired, and how much they need to replace…….

  19. Oh I understand Barb. It’s just with so much to repair on the house an additional $325 to repair my gutters seems like a kick in my nuts. The back corner of the house is damaged from the tree fall. I think I’ll wait until Mother Robin Red Breast vacates her nest before taking any further action.

  20. Barb says:

    I don’t know, if you don’t do it now, you may “forget” and then be mad at yourself for not getting it fixed later…….(and/or the next estimate will be even more). I say just skip a couple shows with ticketmaster fees & apply the money to the gutters & you won’t even notice. 😉

  21. Nice. 🙂

    I do want to allow the robin to lay her eggs and nourish her young. After all, she’s gone through all of the hard work of building a nest on my downspout — the one directly below the damaged gutter.

    Do we know of a hash gutter person? Little Willy, is this something you could tackle?

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