Category Archives: Paul

No Context For You – May 09th

Blurred. That’s what reality feels like at times these days. Like a Twilight Zone episode where you suddenly can start to see the machinery behind the scenes or be able to poke your finger through the fabric of spacetime and see what’s lying underneath, maybe give it a little tear.

Too many deadlines some days, too little time to breathe, headaches just a bit too sharp, everything just too, Too, TOO!

Maybe there was a dream that was a bit too vivid, a bit too desirable, an inch too far out of reach when we woke up. Maybe the news was a bit too bizarre, a touch too threatening, a dollop too insane.

Maybe all of the above.

Keep moving, don’t look too closely into the corners or shadows.

Keep moving.

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Filed under Deep Thoughts, Paul, Photography

California Voting

Like many states, California has midterm primary elections coming up in a month or so. With that on the horizon, today I got, within the course of about three minutes:

  • A text message from the LA County Registrar of Voters, telling me that my mail-in ballot had been mailed today. I should get it within a week.
  • A voice mail message from the LA County Registrar of Voters, telling me that my mail-in ballot had been mailed today. I should get it within a week.
  • An email from the LA County Registrar of Voters, telling me that my mail-in ballot had been mailed today. I should get it within a week.

I spent about two seconds thinking about how this was overkill, but then reality set in and I remembered how many states (guess how many of them are controlled by an uber right-wing, conservative political party?) are banning mail in voting, early voting, drop boxes for voting, and doing everything they can, legal and otherwise, to prevent folks from voting. I’m a demographic (male, white, reasonably well off) that probably wouldn’t suffer much from those efforts, but I have no interest in living in one of those states where people like me are working so stinking hard to completely screw over people who are not like me.

So I’m going to be grateful to be in California in general and in Los Angeles County in particular where voting is encouraged, even for those who aren’t necessarily like me. They can bombard me with helpful, transparent information all they want.

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Filed under Paul, Politics

Healthy Lunch

Apropos of just about nothing other than it’s been a busy, busy day in a busy, busy week and I’ve got some tight deadlines coming up and my brain is still stewing and festering about *waves hands vaugely at everything* so let’s see what a normal lunch is for me. It caught my eye today because it’s colorful!

  • A slice or two of low sodium turkey
  • A slice or two of Swiss cheese, but sometimes a hunk Monterey Jack (the cheese and turkey used to be a sandwich, but in order to cut down on the carbs that I so dearly love but my A1C readings hate, the bread and condiments are gone)
  • Radishes (or sometimes carrots)
  • Strawberries (or sometimes grapes)
  • Apple (or sometimes a pear or orange)
  • Diet Coke or water (not shown)

Compared to what I might like to eat for lunch if I were still working in an office, particularly if that office had dozens of fast food places within a block or three, this is pretty stinking healthy. There are enough alternatives and options to keep a little bit of variety in there, which is good. Even with a fair amount of flavor, the same thing every day like clockwork would be … BORING!

I would also note that lunch is served at my desk with keyboard at the ready. Remember, sometimes it’s not so much “working from home” as it is “living at work.” As so many of us know these days.

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Filed under Paul, Photography

No Context For You – May 03rd

I have few coherent words at the moment given the news of the past 24 hours and the rage it has ignited in me. And that doesn’t even take into account the ongoing horrors in Ukraine.

So take an odd picture without any context, because there isn’t any there to be had.

Meanwhile, while thinking about the 19-year-old, Eisenhower Republican, Midwestern, raised strict Catholic Paul who would be totally gobsmacked to see mid-60’s Paul sharing this, have some interesting and possibly extremely useful information for the days ahead…

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Filed under Freakin' Idiots!, Moral Outrage, Paul, Photography, Politics

Okay May, Let’s Talk

First of all, April? Long hike, short pier, don’t let the door hit you where the good Lord split ‘ya! Capiche? You were better than January, February, or March, but that bar wasn’t set very high and we had such hopes for you. Which you failed at delivering.

May, listen up! I don’t want there to be any misunderstandings!

Big picture – if the stock market could start recovering and stop plunging, if gas prices could get back under $5/gallon, and if the Russians could stop whatever insanity they’re up to that would all be super great! Make it so.

It’s good that the Kings made the playoffs and the Angels are off to a hot start and in first place after three weeks or so. It’s a little icing on the cake that the Ducks, Sharks, and Golden Knights are sitting at home watching the playoffs on cable, and the Dodgers aren’t in first place while we are. (What, me petty and vengeful? Damn straight!) Now let’s see those things continuing and improving even more. It’s that whole “Big Mo” thing (momentum, for the non sports addicted) and we need to see it snowballing.

It’s been pretty good at work and I’m hoping that continues, although there are always storm clouds on the horizon. If those could hold off another month or so, so much the better. If not, then at least give me a bit of a heads up, okay?

On the personal time management and existential stress front, some time to get caught up on “Picard,” get started on “Strange New Worlds,” and get to the theater for “Top Gun 2” would really push your evaluation score towards an A+.

And as always, if you really want to graduate cumma sum laude, you could do something appropriate with COVID or the GOP. Do both and you’ll be a freakin’ legend.

It’s up to you, May! We’re dancing as fast as we can here, a little help on your part would really be appreciated!

You’re on in 36 minutes.

Good talk!

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Filed under Deep Thoughts, Paul

Happy 9th Birthday, WLTSTF!

9 years.

3,288 days.

3,380 posts.

7,917 images. (90%+ are taken by me. The rest are images from the news, from cell phone screen captures, and so on.)

67 videos.

9 audio clips.

2,670 total comments.

67,800 total views.

43,044 total visitors to the site.

10,727 total likes.

1,609 followers (694 from WordPress, 613 from Twitter, 280 from FaceBook, 10 from Tumblr, and 12 via email)

7,049 shares (1,982 from Twitter, 1,643 from FaceBook, 1,454 from LinkedIn, and 1,970 from Tumblr)

God alone knows how many words.

The last time I either was too busy or, more likely, simply forgot to post anything was April 10, 2020. Since they I’ve posted 749 days in a row.

In total there have only been fourteen days of those 3,288 days when I didn’t post anything at all.

I hope that at least a few of the 1,609 folks who get notified every day that I’ve posted something take a minute to look and/or read and get a moment of zen or pleasure from it. I enjoy creating it.

I hope that in the next year there are many more occasions to share a pretty picture, a goofy story, or something clever.

I hope that in the next year there will be many fewer occasions to descend into a venting rant about something stupid, annoying, or depressing.

As do we all, I’m sure.

And finally – I have a Tumblr account??!!

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Filed under Paul, Writing

Scans Of Old Photos

A quest down the rabbit hole of old, OLD photos reminded me of how much of the photos, film, video, and audio recordings I have from my youth are still in a very non-electronic and potentially fragile state. In looking for any of my baby pictures for example, scans of pictures I took in high school are the earlierst I have in any electronic format, and 17 years old is hardly a baby picture. That in turn led me to electronic copies of old 8mm home movies that I long ago digitized – from there I can grab a screenshot of 3 year old me at Halloween, but it’s not a very high resolution picture at all.

A lot of those original pictures from my parents are in storage and just need to be scanned. I also still have all of those 8mm films. I’m willing to bet that I can do a lot better job of digitizing them than I did 20+ years ago.

Yeah – in my copious free time…

Meanwhile, I also ran across some of the B&W film and color slides that I’ve digitized. For example:

The house where I lived during high school. My B&W negatives were stored properly and scan up real well.

Some of the color slides are still in pretty good shape, although there’s been a little color shifting. (Hey, look, in the driveway, it’s THE MAX!!)

Other slides have much better color retention, but weren’t stored in a clean environment, so they’re covered with spots of dust and schmutz.

Next time I’m bored maybe I’ll see how much a little Photoshop can clean up the dust spots. Or maybe a little bit of very gentle TLC applied to the original slides could clean them up without destroying them.

In my copious free time…

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Filed under Paul, Photography

Pizza

Left to my own devices, I would eat a LOT of “comfort food,” full of carbs and sugar and fat. Ice cream, bread, doughnuts, candy, margaritas, cookies, grilled cheese sandwiches, chocolate, chocolate, and then more chocolate, PB&J sandwiches, cheeseburgers, mac and cheese, clam chowder, french fries, burritos, rice, chili, sushi, kung pao chicken, tacos, wine… You get the idea.

And I would weigh 300 pounds, barely be able to move, would have a lifespan from here on that’s measured in weeks, be shooting insulin to stay alive, and be generally incredibly unhealthy.

Thus, the “adulting” shit I do and the highly different diet from that described above.

It’s a question of balance – I do not want to live like a monk, and I won’t. Nor do I want to live like a candidate for a Discovery Channel reality TV show, and I won’t.

Moderation.

Intelligence.

Making mature, responsible decisions.

The tricky part is where to set the balancing point on that spectrum. Sometimes my doctor and I disagree. Particularly in terms of carbs and comfort food.

The measure of success or failure in this ongoing battle is the A1C measurement, a blood test that says how much sugar you’re retaining in your blood from your diet. This can vary as you age and can also vary from time to time as the medical powers-that-be change their mind on what’s acceptable and what’s not. The short version is that for me now I need to be between about 5.0 and 7.0. If I’m over that, my doctor is really going to push hard for me to start insulin to treat borderline Type 2 diabetes. I am really going to push back on that, preferring to control my A1C and blood glucose levels with diet (see above!) and exercise.

It’s a long running “discussion.”

I get my A1C tested routinely twice a year, and with one or two exceptions over the past fifteen years or so, I’ve hit those targets. One of the way I do that, while still maintaining a lifestyle balance that leaves me with the will to live when I finish dinner, is to have periods when I have an A1C test coming up (where I have an extremely restrictive diet) and periods where I’ve just “passed” my A1C and can be a little bit less restrictive.

(To be clear, “less restrictive” is not code for going totally off of the deep end and eating like a lunatic. It more means that once or twice a week, if I have dessert or some pasta or something “bad,” I’m not going to beat myself up over it or lose sleep. Moderation, remember?)

Today, I passed my “spring” A1C test. And tonight I celebrated by having pizza for the first time since December. Nothing fancy, just Dominos.

It was sooooooooooooooooo good!

And yes, I feel like I ate a bowling ball, and no, I did not eat the entire medium size pizza by myself. There’ plenty of leftovers for tomorrow or Thursday.

But the cheesy, saucy, thick crust Carb-o-lisciousness tonight was indeed a celebration.

Tomorrow I will have a banana and egg for breakfast, fruit and raw veggies for lunch, and something reasonably healthy for dinner with veggies and salad. (And some dessert! Maybe wine!)

But tonight, it’s a wonder that this got written and posted before midnight, because I am warm and snuggly in the bosom of a carb coma.

Moderation.

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Filed under Health, Paul

No Context For You – April 7th

I haven’t done one of these since late January? It’s like I’m not even doing real blogging!

Today felt like Friday all day and I was so much looking forward to the weekend tomorrow. Hold that thought for one more day…

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Filed under Paul, Photography

It Was, Of Course…

Part of my daily breakfast is a hard boiled egg, so every Sunday night I prepare six of them using this handy, dandy hard boiled egg maker that my wonderful daughter got for me a few years back.

Sometimes, not often, but sometimes an egg will crack a little and a bit of the cooked egg will spill out.

Tonight there was a “CRACK!!” like a rifle shot that could be heard across the room, with this result.

It was, of course…

An EGGPLOSION!!

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Filed under Curiosities, Paul, Photography