From The Department Of Awesome

After a insanely code-productive Saturday (indoors?!?!) I had a blast hanging out with ITP-Reader Jenka on Saturday night.

Today’s Daily Challenge
Quiet your mind by looking at an object from nature.

Our lives are so busy that we often disconnect from the natural world. Slowing down to pay attention to small details helps us feel more at one with everything around us and can redirect our focus, if even for a minute. Making time for quiet reflection can reduce stress, lower blood pressure, improve concentration, and reduce anger and frustration. Breathing deeply while you do it will also lower your heart rate and renew your energy.

Winner, Winner, Pastrami Dinner
I met up with Jenka for a pre-show dinner at the Wrecking Bar, she ordered the pastrami sandwich (what I considered ordering but didn’t because I never copy someone else’s order — it’s a “me” thing) and I ordered the burger; these were two of the three menu items recommended by the bartender. I’ll never admit it, but I think Jenka order the better item. Oh shit, I guess that I just did admit it. 🙂

After dinner we headed to the Ferst Center on the campus of Georgia Tech to hear Ira Glass (host of This American Life) speak. Being the “Atlanta-savvy” drive I claim to be I managed to get us there in no time by taking a series of back roads to avoid the main arteries which I assumed would be swamped by NCAA / Braves traffic; oh, Jenka navigated as well.

Apparently there was a pre-show meet-and-greet that I failed to discover when I purchased the tickets. Pity, it might have been fun to meet Glass in person and have my photo snapped with him. I’m sure Jenka would have enjoyed meeting him as well.

Jenka has seen Ira Glass lecture previously, this was my cherry buster maiden voyage. Glass spoke and answered questions for well over two hours! I was thrilled and thankful that I skipped the many other fun-sounding options — biking/camping, Muse at Centennial Park, Trombone Shorty at Terminal West) for this event.

I dropped Jenka off and briefly considered heading to The EARL for the Little Tybee show, but I was tired and headed home for a good night’s sleep.

ITP Flickr Pic
I was honest when I told Jenka that I didn’t remember where the seats were located.
Better Than I Remembered
Somehow I had forgotten that when I purchased the tickets (five-six months ago?) that I was able to get two seats in the front row.

Sunday, Lazy Sunday

If “fuck around on the internet all day” were on my list of chores for today I’d be having a hell of a productive day.

I tweeted at about 12:45pm EDT yesterday, this after nearly five hours of sitting in front of my computer. Okay, I’m being a little harsh on myself because in that time I also:

  • Baked, photographed, and ate a slice of bread (Verdict: WIN!)
  • Decided to give myself another day off from exercising (Why? Shit, I don’t really know.)
  • Drank a pot of coffee and beer (Not together of course; I’m not an alcoholic but I cannot seem to go a day without drinking — liver be damned!)
  • Listened to six album’s worth of new music (Some of which I cannot disclose yet, one of which will be reviewed on Tuesday)
  • Imported, processed, and uploaded three photos to Flickr (Including the one in today’s blog)
  • Attempted to shoot using my Nikon V1 with Nikon DSLR lenses attached (Verdict: LOSS — it requires manual focusing, something I am very bad at doing)
  • Decided to go to the Braves game (It was such a gorgeous day)
  • Decided not to go to the Braves game (It got too late to shower and get there by first pitch)
  • Wrote the first draft of this blog (You’re welcome.)

Let The Downsizing Begin!
This weekend I started my “Spring Cleaning” initiative in addition to the “Spring Training” initiative I started on Friday.

I spent a good amount of yesterday wrangling things that should no longer be a part of my life; many of which were clothes that no longer, and may never again, be the correct size for me. So if you see some of the local hipsters and homeless looking rather unfashionable (think Macklemore & Ryan Lewis “Thrift Shop” WARNING: FAR FROM SFW), you may rightly thank me. Huh, I guess Macklemore & Ryan Lewis were part of the big lineup at Centennial Park on Saturday night. Who knew?

There are some items that I’d rather sell than donate. Have you sold anything independently? What’s your reselling venue of choice — Amazon, eBay, Craig’s List, EAV Buzz? If I am smart I can use this as an opportunity to set up my “photography studio set up” and vastly improve my product photography.

The Anniversary Crasher
Thanks to a text from ITP-Reader Barb I was officially invited to crash the double-anniversary dinner at East Atlanta Thai & Sushi, sparing me the trouble of playing paparazzo.

Dinner was really good and up until what you will read about next had put the cap on a great weekend.

From The Department Of Why Am I Being Tested?
Around midnight last night I went to brush my teeth and noticed the water pressure was not up to its normal standards.

Upon investigation I found at least one of the culprits — a small drip in one of my water pipes. Greeeeeeeat. Seriously, how does this shit keep happening to me? Add this new problem to my plumbing woes of:

  • The infamous waste line problem.
  • The non-functioning sink in my “second” bathroom. It hasn’t worked in years and since I live alone so I never considered this to be critical to fix.
  • The leak in the sink drain in my guest bathroom that I discovered a few weeks ago when I poured water down its drain.
  • The leak in the sink drain in the basement bathroom that I discovered about a month ago when I used that bathroom. (note: I rarely use this bathroom these days so didn’t consider this to be an emergency.)
  • Aged water heater that needs to be replaced.

And these are the problems about which I know.

The irony in this new discovery is that it happened just a couple of hours after talking about house repairs with my mother on the telephone and her telling me that she hoped that I didn’t experience any new problems for a long time.

Do you know a fantastic plumber / plumbing company? I need this new leak fixed ASAP and get quotes on fixing the rest.

I know that I can’t go back and change the past nor can I assume my life would be wonderful if I had never purchased this house, but this house has caused me much grief over the past fourteen years.

It is time for me to either fix everything and, when I am finished downsizing either sell the house or I can talk to someone about selling the house “as is.”

It is now 2:00am and I am getting tired. Unfortunately I think this turn of events has ruined any chance of me going to the gym tomorrow morning.

I don’t think that I can do this any longer…

Today’s Personal Project
This section will now be the last thing since it usually pertains to something about which I am blogging.

Do some demolition and line up a plumber to come fix the water leak.

Stats & Goals
Current Mood – depressed because of the house
Current Music – silence
Website Of The Day – Yesterday I was introduced to Sauce Magazine. I don’t have the foggiest idea where I will find the time to read it, but it does look interesting.
Mode Of Transportation To Work – my car
Exercise (b)Log – nothing
Morning Weigh-In – sadly, 212.6 pounds

Foot Mileage – 0.0 miles
Wheel Mileage – 0.0 miles
Gym Visits – 4 (2 cardio)

Days Of Bed-Making – 0

Vegetarian Meals – 13
Carnivorous Meals – 8

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

April Goals
– not get sick
– lose two pounds
– walk/run no fewer that 50 miles
– lift weights at the gym no fewer than eight times
– finish at least two of the books I am reading
– take at least one box of things to Goodwill
– post at least ten photos in the blog
– drink a lot less alcohol
– prepare a house repair plan and budget
– return ITP-Reader Martha’s coffee percolator to her
– return ITP-Terri’s crutches to her

2013 Goals: Measurable
– Get my weight down to 190 pounds so that I can wear a 36″ waist pants comfortably
– Completely read ten books, audio books permissible
– Dissolve Sharpened Stone
– Save $500 for the sole purpose of donating to charitable organizations of my choice
– Completely run at least one 10k
– Fix all (or at least most) of the things which are wrong with the ITP Estate

2013 Goals: Unmeasurable
– Simplify, simplify, simplify
– Continue backing up all data, including the off-site storage
– Do not create a solution for something which is not a problem
– Eat smaller portions
– Start, and continue, to make my own bread using my bread machine as well as using the technique outlined in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking
– Read and discard magazines during the month in which they arrive (even digitally)
– Take two real vacations, perhaps one abroad
– Take a more proactive approach to meeting women (read “stop being such a pussy”)

Books I’ve Read/Heard In 2013

  1. Pages 1.7 for iPad (Timestompers Guide) — by Sean Wells
  2. 60 Mountain Lion Tips — by David Sparks and Brett Terpstra
  3. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business — by Charles Duhigg

Paulie [eatl/ga]

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19 Responses to From The Department Of Awesome

  1. There is a part of me that is very angry with my house, which is silly since it is an inanimate object, and wants to fix it completely and live in it. Huh.

    I did skip the gym and showered at work to minimize water consumption. Tonight I will attempted to cut off the water at the street and then rip down the closet ceiling where I saw the water dripping. Hopefully I can schedule a plumber visit for tomorrow; the plan is to get a water heater pipe repair (the leak is about seven feet from the water heater) quote and have the work done asap. Stay tuned…

    What saddens me more is that this discovery prompted me to remove an entire section of today’s blog in which I was contemplating three-day weekend travel plans and seeing who’d be interested in joining me. I think, at least for the time being, all real “disposable” income will be headed to the “Fix ITP Estate Fund.”

  2. Barb says:

    Bummer about the pipe, but look at it postively – you get it fixed now & maybe a few other things fixed, then you won’t have as many things for that list above. Some of them may not be that big of a deal after all & once you get the plumber there, that is half the battle. Also- if you like the guy, you may want to ask him to fix the “official” problem on the company books, and then see if he is interested in coming back “off the clock” for the other problems – could save you a lot of money if you have the cash.

    It was fun seeing you (& Steve & Debbie too) last night – the sushi was great as was the company.

    Hey Martha – how are you feeling today?
    I’m a little tired from all the bike riding, but I gotta say, after 2 cold nights sleeping on an airmatress, my bed felt so good. I haven’t slept that deeply in a while.

  3. Steve says:

    Well crap. While it does seem that you have more than your fair share of housing woes, all houses have issues. If you didn;t live in a house, you might live in an apartment or condo, and then you’d have neighbors who irritate you, so pick your poison.

    Anniversary dinner was quite lovely. It is a bit of a trek for those of us who live in BFE, but the company is always good.

    Other exploits from the weekend include 2 rides, neither of which are bragging length, but for some reason, managed to get my heart rate up to levels I wasn’t sure were possible anymore- 191 at one point. No wonder my legs felt well done.

    Paris-Roubaix was aired live yesterday morning and was nothing short of exceptional. Debbie’s man Fabian was simply impressive in his dominating victory.

    No TAR spoilers, please.

    I have a good plumber, but he’s out of Newnan, so G.U.


  4. Actually a coworker of mine who lives in an apartment just had a water heater two floors above his spring a leak, cascading all of that water into his apartment. Fortunately for him he was at home, and not much of his stuff was destroyed.

    I’m flummoxed how out of the blue a copper pipe (no where near a fitting from what I could see last night) could spring a leak. It’s not like I drove a nail into it!

    No worries about TAR spoilers today because there was no TAR last night — stupid Country Music Awards!

    I also missed Mad Men last night — have it DVR’d as well as will be downloading it from iTunes tonight.

  5. Steve says:

    Could you see where the leak was? If it was just a pinhole in a copper pipe, they do sell clamps to repair such things.{keyword}&gclid=CLvhi_-bu7YCFQGCnQod538Ahw

  6. Martha says:

    Paulie, trust me (as someone that also owns an older home) fix what is bothering you. Bite the bullet and do it…nothing, and I mean nothing in your life should cause you this much stress…but especially something you do have control over.

    I’m feeling okay, my legs were a bit heavy yesterday. I managed a slow, pathetic run around Grant Park, then took the dogs for a walk. I’m supposed to get back on the bike today. I’m sure it won’t be as bad as I’m imagining 🙂

    I was so happy I drove home on Saturday. I would have loved to stay and chat but I slept so good in my own bed.

  7. I can see the drip using a stepladder and flashlight last night; it looks to be pinhole size. I do need to rip out a closet ceiling (it’s a half-assed closet creation anyway so I am not brokenhearted to do this).

    I’ve been pushing my luck with the water heater so I should get that replaced regardless (it is fourteen years old). With the plumber there and the ceiling ripped down I don’t think that will be a big job for them to do it “right”.

    You know the odd thing is that up until midnight there was only one thing missing from making this past weekend nearly perfect. And then the walls caved in (well, thankfully not).

  8. Steve says:

    Well, for less than $20 you can keep the leak from doing much more damage, then be able to find a plumber without rushing. I think Melissa (Pushover) might have a good intown plumber- I’d ping her on FB, but I’m somewhat restrict at work.

  9. Debbie says:

    I had a roof leak at Brockett that I let go too long causing me much stress as it was ruining the lovely pine ceiling put in for one of the tv shows taped at my house. When I finally got a roofer out, it was less expensive than I had been imaging and it was done two days.

    I hope your plumbing woes are equally quick to fix and that you can get that stress out of your life.

    It was great to see Pastor Paulie and the Groves last night for the 7/11 sushi fest.

    Brownie spent much of the night on high alert and barked non-stop to let us know he was keeping us safe, yawn.

  10. Steve says:

    Maybe that’s why I feel like I got hit by a bus- that or 2 beers and too much free saki! Slow with the sushi, the waiter brought out a large hot saki, and only Allan and I put much of a dent in it. And I hate to waste good paint thinner- er, I mean saki.

  11. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    I only had a couple of sips because to me saki does taste like paint thinner.

  12. Martha says:

    Just saw you post on the Buzz…if you don’t have a way to shut off all the water inside the house, get a shut off valve installed when you have the work done. In an emergency you do not want to be searching for a tool and stumbling around outside in the dark.

  13. That’s probably a good idea, Martha. Part of the work I will be doing tonight is looking for an inside cutoff.

  14. Okay, Pink Plumber (aka Aames Plumbing) is scheduled to come out tomorrow and install a new water heater, and it I can get my shit together and have access to the leak (and I am hoping the water isn’t traveling down the pipe to leak) fix that too.

  15. Steve says:

    And while they’re out, have them take a look at the drain line! See if they can run a camera down the pipe to see what’s going on.

  16. Martha says:

    We are keeping out fingers crossed that nothing breaks before we do the reno. Everything will be replaced, so we don’t want to have to do anything twice.

    Have them give you an estimate for everything, then work from that.

  17. I will be asking them about the drain line, the guest bathroom sink (both getting it working and stopping its leak), the basement sink, the bar sink, potentially installing an indoor water main valve if none exists, and any other of the umpteen plumbing snafus that my house possesses.

    I think that I will be spending a LOT of money on the house this year, and by the time I am done am hoping it will be in sellable condition for when I decide to put it on the market.

  18. bob says:

    You are going to make that plumbers day as he is writing up the estimate. If you see him shopping for a new boat while you are going over the paperwork you will know why 🙂

  19. Which is why I will not be disclosing all of my needs at once. 😉

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