It seems fitting that on Easter weekend I’ve attempted to resurrect many parts of my life. (Am I right about Easter and the Resurrection? I’m such a religious ignoramus.)

Zen And The Art Of Lawnmower Maintenance
Yesterday I finally got around to performing a little lawnmower maintenance — I changed the oil, and swapped out the air filter and blade for new ones. I probably should have gotten a new spark plug too, but I don’t have the appropriate gap tool, so that’ll have to wait for now. I also noticed that after eleven years of use the front plastic wheels are starting to crack, so buy summer’s end I may need to investigate getting new ones.

And with a resurrected lawnmower who wouldn’t use it to mow their lawn? I know you are expecting me to answer “Me” but you’d be wrong. It’s amazing how much better the mower works with a new blade; my weeds haven’t looked this nice in a while.

Not Necessarily Feaster
I’d intended to prepare a large Easter dinner for myself. As an experiment I put a large chunk of beef into the crockpot with some onions, potatoes, carrots, a sprig of rosemary, a package of french onion soup mix, and some red wine. I set the crockpot on low and started it to cook early in the morning. I over-estimated the amount of time needed to cook the three-pound chunk of meat because it was (over) done much earlier than I expected. I wound up eating dinner by five o’clock, because it was ready even though I wasn’t.

One benefit of yesterday’s cooking is that I have at least two lunches set for this week. Eating at work instead of going out for lunch is part of my plan to resurrect my weight-loss and money-saving programs.

ITP Flickr Pic
Hey, wait a minute! How’d this get here?
On Saturday morning I met up with a couple of my Flickr friends for breakfast at The Majestic before heading over to Wings Camera to attend their flea market / yard sale / been-there-done-that sale.

As the sellers were setting up their goods the three of us headed over to an office building where we did a little bit of photography. I’ll be posting some cliché shots this week, think of it as me resurrecting my photography life.

RealiTV Update: The Amazing Race – Lichtenstein, Oh Lichtenstein
Let there be spoilers!
I’m more than a little disappointed with the organizers of
The Amazing Race, and if I my schedule this week would permit I’d head to Atlantic Station to ask Phil Keoghan a question or two. Read on to see what irks me.

All teams start this leg by getting on the same train to Lichtenstein. In this leg we know that Team Daddy’s Little Miss America will have to perform a Speed Bump as punishment for finishing last, and we learn that there will be a Double U-Turn. U-Turning two teams with only six teams remaining? WTF?

Once in Lichtenstein the teams get their first Road Block — riding a moped the length of Lichtenstein to calculate the country’s length. And then my first gripe occurs — the Speed Bump challenges these days are too easy. As their Speed Bump “punishment” Team Daddy’s Little Miss America have to solve a math problem. WHAT?!?! Are you serious? That’s punishment? Their shitty cabbie proved to be more of a speed hump than that! Because of this incredibly simple “punishment” (I miss the days when teams were stripped of all of their possessions.) Team Daddy’s Little Miss America got onto the road only slightly later than the other teams.

This Road Block also brings us to my second gripe — helping/cheating. Out of the shoot every team but Team Daddy’s Little Miss America gets out onto the course. Teams Noun and Trotters misread their map, causing them problems. Team Sista Sista loses the map(!) which should require a restart, but no! Team Assburger passes Team Sista Sista and the two teams work together to finish the Road Block first. Then, they see Team Trotters along the course and tell him the fucking answer. Team Trotters runs into Team Daddy’s Little Miss America and tells him the answer too! Team Goths Gone Wild seem to be one of the few teams who does the Road Block correctly the first time without intervention. The only team to screw up and not be saved is Team Noun, who has to go back to the start and try again. This turns out to be the episode where Team Noun’s missteps finally gets them verbed.

From the Road Block the teams encounter a Detour which includes another eating challenge, and a luggage delivery challenge. After failing the schnitzel challenge in Austria I am surprised to see Team Assburger take the eating challenge, which this time consists of eating a very large bowl of cheese fondu. Two things intrigued me about this challenge.

  1. I’m surprised to see the lads use the bread in order to eat the fondu. If I were doing this as part of the race I’d ask for a spoon, or figure out how to scoop and eat the cheese sans bread cubes knowing that the bread is what’s going to prove to be the most filling part.
  2. In a rare view into the “real time” world of The Amazing Race a clock is placed in the corner of the screen showing how long it takes Team Assburger to become Team Assburger with Cheese.

Team Sista Sista quickly realize that fondu eating is not going to be the key to their success, and switch tasks.

After the Detour the teams reach the Double U-Turn, which oddly occurs right before they head to the Pitstop. Really? One by one teams choose not to use the U-Turn, of course Team Goths Gone Wild have no choice as they U-Turned the redheads many episodes ago. Only Team Trotters, who had a touch of difficulty with the luggage delivery challenge, choose to use the U-Turn in order to save themselves; they U-Turned Team Noun which thus eliminates them.

Team Assburger won their fourth leg of The Amazing Race (is that four in this season?). They seem to be one of the few teams remaining that I would have predicted would still be around at this time in the season. I’m surprised to see Team Goths Gone Wild and Team Daddy’s Little Miss America still fighting while other stronger (imho) teams have been eliminated.

Stats & Goals
Current Mood – fair
Current Music – listening to last week’s “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!” podcast
Website Of The Day – I’m lonely. I’m almost lonely enough to sign up for Cupidtino. Actually, if things were different with me I would have joined online dating services long ago.
Mode Of Transportation To Work – my car
Exercise (b)Log – nothing
Morning Weigh-In – not checking, I’m too fat to want to know

Foot Mileage – 0.0 miles
Wheel Mileage – 0.0 miles
Pushups – 0
Situps – 0
Stairs – 0 flights

Consecutive Days Of Bed-Making (Longest Streak) – 0 (0)

Vegetarian Days – 3
Carnivorous Days – 21

Marta Rides To Work – 0
Bike Rides To Work – 0

April Goals
– “Completely” recover from the bike crash
– Not to get sick for the entire month
– Not get fired from my job
– Run at least once
– Lose two pounds
Go out on a date with someone else
– Read an entire book, specifically The Mole People: Life In The Tunnels Beneath New York City

2011 Goals [will be a little more fluid than in past years]
– Reduce my weight by 25 pounds based on the my weight as measured on February 1st
Completely read the book Daily Negations which I received as a Christmas gift.
– Run Sharpened Stone as a real business — one which does not get penalized.
– 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
Ride in no fewer than five 50 mile or 50K bike rides
– Run in no fewer than two one half-marathon
– Submit at least one application under the name “Sharpened Stone” to Apple’s iOS store

The Unmeasurable
– Continue backing up all data, including the off-site storage
– Become a proficient programmer in Objective-C
– Do not create a solution for something which is not a problem
– Eat smaller portions

Paulie [eatl/ga]

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8 Responses to Resurrection

  1. Vic says:

    It’s been my experience that the gap from the factory on a mower spark plug is just fine.

  2. Barb says:

    I have no problem with the teams helping each other, and one sista thinks Flight Time is cute – of course she’s going to help him. But – I did think the U-turn right before the pit stop was stupid. You need to give the team a slight chance to not be eliminated! And – Allan said he would have tried to figure out how to drink the cheese, and yes, skip the bread as much as possible.

    Team Daddy’s Miss America have grown on me, Team Goth are the only really annoying ones to me left.

    We had a quite sucessful Easter morning bike ride & brunch, starting in almost Alabama it seemed (better known as the Rambo Nursery parking lot in Paulding county). Beautiful day for a ride, and no one on the Silver Comet trail for the most part out there. Worked on my peleton/pace line skills, drafting really does make for a much better/faster ride. Allan was leading & doing the comentary, and we “bridged the gap”, “chased down”, etc. Only people we couldn’t catch was Little Easy, Sal & Marty (for obvious reasons for anyone that knows them). We may have to do this ride more than once a year, the food & beverages were fantastic.

  3. Martha says:

    Okay so it’s 9:45 on a Monday and I’m still at home…it seems very strange, I don’t think it has really sunk in yet. I’ve been busy so far, trying to clean and organize, I’ll be heading to Target soon for more supplies!!

    Kroger actually had leg of lamb for sale this weekend. Jerry grilled in on the Egg, we tossed some eggplant on and I made some spanakopita…too bad I was still so hungover I had a hard time enjoying it.

    “if things were different with me”…not sure what that means, or what about you would prevent the use of an effective tool to meet someone???

    Maybe I’ll drop my mower off for a tune up…it could sure use it 😉

  4. Steve says:

    Was anyone else bothered by Team Trotters lack of sportsmanship? They were already ahead, going to stay ahead, and yet made Team Noun do the second challenge. At least they realized their fate and seemed to enjoy the fondue.

    Barb, the pics of the ride looked like fun. Beautiful day for it.


  5. Barb says:

    I guess if we could have seen the “real time”, we’d know if the Trotters were just barely ahead or not. I mean, they were both running around the city delivering luggage, for all we knew they were just a couple minutes ahead & still had to find the pit stop. It is for 1 million dollars, I may have u-turned them too.

    If & when we get a free weekend day again, we may have to schedule another bike ride & brunch again.

    BTW – (sorry Paulie, but get your hip fixed & get a new bike soon please ;-), Anyone interested in doing the Mayor’s Ride next Sunday morning in Roswell? It is a 20 or 40 mile ride.

  6. Hey all, I *just* got in to work after going to PT and showering in the office workout room’s shower.

    Thanks Vic. Perhaps I’ll pick up spark plug and try it. I suppose that it wouldn’t kill me to keep the old one around “just in case.” I still have to go to an auto parts store for a bulb for my taillight, so I can inquire while there.

    Barb, I’m trying to get both things accomplished. The hip is being problematic — it pops a lot. I’m waiting on a check still for the bike. I’ll be waiting to make a purchase until I’m sure that I’ll be able to ride again without pain/difficulty. No sense buying a nice bike and not be able to ride. 🙁

    Martha, I would have bought lamb on Saturday but the Sage Hill Kroger didn’t have a great selection of meat (again). I wound up going to Publix on Ponce to get my beef.

    Team Trotters have shown no problem gaming the system — remember when the kept making the country girl scared on the long slide? The sharing of information / telling people the answer just seems like cheating on a test to me.

    Okay, time to do some work…

  7. Barb says:

    I only say hurry up & get well because I feel bad telling people about bike stuff when you can’t ride. I know you want to be well sooner than later.

  8. Don’t hold back about bike stuff, hearing about it doesn’t bother me in the least. I’ll be riding again some day.

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