Pounding The Pavement (Again)

Monday, July 23, 2018




Greetings, one and all. Just a quick post to say hello. Hope everyone is having a good summer so far. The news has been almost uniformly awful :-/, so I'll avoid talking about it here. 

Instead, I'll focus on something positive: I'm finally able to start running again, at long last. Woo hoo! It had been 14 months, between a lingering issue with my hamstring last spring/summer, followed by my surgery and then a standard-issue New England winter.

I was able to start again in June, and got two weeks in, once again using the Couch to 5K (C25K) app I used to get started a few years ago. I was finishing the final run of the second week, and feeling good... only to have my 18 month old running shoes fall apart as I was finishing a run. Specifically, the heel came off my left shoe mid-stride. 

Luckily I escaped with a sore left knee, which healed quite nicely during the time it took to order new running shoes online and wait for their arrival. (I have an uncommon shoe size, so even specialty running stores typically don't carry anything that fits.)

Anyway, they finally arrived a few weeks ago, so I was able to start anew. Since I'm starting up again after a long layoff, I decided to repeat the first two weeks, lest my penchant for injuring myself kick in yet again.

I completed the first run of week 3 this morning before work, and am just now beginning to feel my stamina returning. As I mentioned in previous posts, I put on weight post-surgery. I was concerned I would have a hard time losing it, given how high my testosterone was pre-surgery, even after taking Spironolactone for years. 

My doctor, who is also a runner, assured me that my body would remember once I started exercising regularly again as my daily dilating schedule became more manageable. And... she was right. :c) I've put a nice dent into the amount I need to lose in a short period of time. I'm not really seeing the results yet (although my stylist, who saw me for the first time in six weeks last Friday, immediately commented on it as I walked in), but I'm beginning to feel it. For now, that's plenty.

I have a long way to go, but I feel a lot better knowing that I'll get back to my regular weight by sticking to my normal workout routine. It will take patience and a lot of hard work... but so did my transition. I did that; I can do this. In fact, I can do pretty much anything I put my mind to, I now realize. :c)

OK, off to cook dinner here, then work on my *other* big project. More on that soon... promise. :D Have a good week, everyone!

***

Since I'm out pounding the pavement again, what better band to end this post with than... Pavement? Check out Stephen Malkmus absolutely shredding during his guitar solo on "Summer Babe (Winter Version)", one of my faves of theirs.


I was going to post a clip of them performing "Cut Your Hair," probably their best-known song... but then I remembered Wilco had covered it a few years ago during one of their Solid Sound festivals, held in North Adams MA. They devoted an entire show to cover versions, starting with a killer version of Thin Lizzy's "The Boys Are Back In Town,"  followed by "Cut Your Hair." Speaking of shredding, Nels Cline absolutely tears the place down here. Enjoy!




Finally, a great song from the first of two masterpieces Stevie Wonder released in 1972,  Music of my Mind - "Keep On Running":


This is the album that contains "Superwoman (Where Were You When I Needed You)", my favorite Stevie song:



Hopefully that's enough tune-age to hold everyone over until my next post. Enjoy!


Cassidy Gets Caricatured

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Thought I'd share something fun; Lord knows we could use it these days, right?

The company I work for held our annual summer barbecue today. The food was terrific, and the weather was perfect (70, breezy, and overcast - i.e. no sunburn risk for the cadaverous-pallored likes of myself). Even better, they had caricaturists there once again, as they did a few years ago. I sat for one for the first time in a few years.

For reference, this is from 2015:


And here is this year's model (to quote Mr. Costello):


Alice and Deanna were kidding me earlier this afternoon about the apparent growth of, er, "the girls" in the intervening three years; I advised them it was a textbook case of artistic license. :D

Anyway, it was a fun day, and I'll be picking up a couple of frames to hang these up this weekend. :c)

Have a pleasant Friday, everyone!

***

Since I quoted Mr. McClanus earlier, I thought I should share a few songs from 1978's This Year's Model, the second in his amazing run of classic albums (from 1977's My Aim Is True to 1982's Imperial Bedroom). First up is a great live performance from the Capitol Theatre in Passaic NJ of "This Year's Girl":


And here's another from the same May 5, 1978 show; probably my favorite song from that album - "The Beat":


Man, were the Attractions an incredible band or what? Going to be listening to some EC this weekend, for sure...

Canada, Cuddy, Coffee, & Cows (a/k/a How I Spent March & April)

Friday, June 1, 2018


Happy Friday, all. Hope everyone had a good week. So, I was off my one weekend in getting this written. Sorry about that. I drafted most of this last weekend, but didn't quite get it finished. This will be one of those grab-bag posts, so hopefully there's' something for everyone! :c)

Hello, How Are You?

Monday, May 21, 2018



Greetings one and all. Haven't written for quite some time... and won't really in this post either. :c) (Sorry!)

I just wanted to say hello, and that I *do* hope to write a new post for real this weekend. It's a long weekend here in the States, so I really have no excuse not to at some point. :c) Watch this space; lots to chat about since my last missive!

***

I don't think I've ever posted a picture of myself wearing my glasses, oddly enough. This is how I usually look at work when I don't wear my contacts. Unfortunately my prescription has changed, and they no longer make these frames. Bummer, as I really liked them. Oh well. Hopefully I can find a pair I like just as much.

Think that will do it for now. See you this weekend (I hope)!

***

I thought I'd end with "How Are You," a great song from Cheap Trick's third album, 1978's Heaven Tonight. You know it's a great album when a song this good is only about the fifth or sixth best song. Check it out if you've never heard it. (Same goes for their first two, Cheap Trick and In Color; all three are stone classics.)


And because one Cheap Trick tune is never enough, here's "Surrender," from 1979's Live at Budokan. The studio version is on Heaven Tonight, incidentally. Both versions are wonderful; it's such a joyous, life-affirming song. And they're still going strong, 40 years after this was released! God love 'em. :c) Enjoy!


Moving, 'Mones, & The Mane Thing

Sunday, February 25, 2018



Greetings all.  Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend. It's been one of the strangest winters I can recall here in New England. We started off bitterly cold and with well above average snowfall through mid-January, followed by nearly a month of above-average temperatures.

Then, in the past week, we've twice gone from several days close to 80 F (26.6 C) to snow - in the first case, eight inches (20 cm) of snow the same night(!), all of which was gone barely 36 hours later. Even by New England standards, that is strange.

Just thought I'd post about a few unrelated items. Follow along below the fold for all of the details. :c)


Poking My Nose Out

Sunday, February 11, 2018


Hi all, and a Happy 2018. Apologies for the radio silence the past few months, especially to those of you who have kindly reached out to check in. It's much appreciated.

Everything is OK, I'm happy to say. I've been back at work since mid-November. My energy level isn't where it usually is, unsurprisingly, given that I'm not quite five months post-surgery. I saw my doctor last week for an exam, who told me I'm recovering nicely, other than some swelling and soreness.

That's likely due to a less-than-comfortable chair at work; I've found I can basically sit for 45-50 minutes at most before having to get up and go for a brief walk. Another factor: I'm still staying with my sister, which, while wonderful, means that I've been sleeping on a futon mattress, which is quite firm and very uncomfortable.

Because there's only has one bathroom, I get up at 4:30 every morning for my first round of dilating, to ensure that I'm finished before she gets up. I work from 6:30 to 3:30, then head home for round 2, followed by the usual weeknight activities (dinner, getting ready for the next day, etc.).

As the week progresses, the fatigue sets in; by Friday evening I'm wiped out, as my friend A can attest from watching the bags under my eyes grow during our Skype chats during the week. I wish I had enough time to exercise the way I usually do, which would help enormously, but between my schedule, the winter weather, and my annual holiday bout with the flu it simply isn't in the cards at the moment. I'm just walking as much as possible, as time, weather, and my energy on a particular day permit.

I have no complaints about any of this, of course; it is all totally worth it. On occasion, I will step out of the shower, catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror, and be reminded: "You did it, Cass."

It's a great feeling, as you can imagine, especially knowing how far I've come and how hard I'be worked the past six-plus years. I know that I earned every bit of this. And in the weeks and months to come, as I continue to recover, and am able to resume my normal activities (and begin to have new experiences), I'll be doing so as myself, inside and out, at long last. I can't wait. :c)

I think that will do it for now. I'll do my best to write more, time and energy permitting. Ciao til then, everyone!

***

By the way, that's my sister's dog in the photo at the top of the post, in case anyone is wondering. As you can probably tell, he isn't a fan of winter either (or mornings). :D

***


As you may know, I'll use any excuse to include a track from Pearl Jam, one of my favorite bands. As soon as I started this post, I knew which song I should use. This is "In Hiding," from 1998's Yield album, at the final show of their Binaural tour in their hometown of Seattle, on November 6th, 2000 - a show I was lucky enough to attend. Enjoy!!!


Have a good week, all!

Musings on Montreal, Part 1B: A Few More Updates :c)

Sunday, November 26, 2017


Hello all, and apologies for going so long between posts. Hope those of you here in the States had a lovely Thanksgiving. :c)

I'm doing well, other than being quite tired. As I mentioned in my reply to Halle, Jenna, and Stace's comments in my previous post, time flies when you return to work, as I did on Monday the 13th, and are still in the three-times-a-day stage of recovery. Follow along below for details - and for information on the handsome gent keeping an eye on the donuts, above. ;-p)


 

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