I Dare You to Make Less Sense

May 17, 2011

Hello! Are you Still There?

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 11:24 am

If so, please put on pants.

Yes, I’m alive! The house didn’t collapse around me, the fingers still work and the keyboard is still clicky. I’ve just been doing some what not and a little y’know.  I’m currently working on four rough drafts and expect to have a post soon. I appreciate your patience and apparent boredom with blogs or Web sites that are actually entertaining.

Humbly yours,

the GamerGirl

October 20, 2010

Today’s Ponderings, Vol. 7

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 2:50 pm
  • Rick Rypien is an idiot.
  • Why in the hell do I still have all of these songs that I don’t like on my iPod as well as several duplicates? Looks like Lazy and I are going to have to do battle yet again. 
  • Wait, Knights of the Old Republic is playable on the XBox 360?  To the Amazon!
  • Good lord, lady, just shut up already. 
  • I wonder how I’ll squeeze in something much less important (i.e., dating) over the next several weeks once something important (Fable 3) comes out? 
  • Note to self: Don’t give out this address to anyone you’re dating ever again for what should have been obvious reasons. *cough*

P.S. I didn’t reach my goal to run a 3k by the end of September. I’ll spare you the details, but I had back-to-back illnesses and a round of “don’t wanna” afterwards.  I’m still running and enjoying it just for that.

September 13, 2010

Happy Anniversary! Now go Fix Something…

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 3:30 pm

This weekend I celebrated the one-year anniversary of having closed on my home.  I “celebrated” by standing in my basement, hands on face (at 3 and 9) and uttered completely rhetorical nonsensery as “Why is this happening?”  “What are you doing?” and “What do I do?”  Perhaps you would have had cake and ice cream, but I like to be different.

Fortunately, I’m a problem solver, and after about 30 seconds of staring at water spitting out of my hot water heater, I figured it was time to actually do something about it. And doing something meant calling somebody who knows anything more about hot water heaters than I do (i.e., anyone).

My friend Ben explained to me that due to having been gone for several days prior (that’s right, it’s too late to loot my house, sucka), it’s possible the temperature inside had gotten too high and that by reducing said temperature and depleting some water, I might be good.  He also said that might not work, and that it’s possible I would need “the valve” replaced.  Since I didn’t know what “the valve” was, and option number one cost me zero dollars and meant a long, guilt-free hot shower, I decided to try that.  For good measure, I also ran some dishes in the dishwasher.  The dripping ceased, I toweled up the mess, and crossed my fingers that I had completely solved the problem with minimal effort on my part and nicely smooth, shaved legs and exfoliated skin.

Why WOULDN'T it work???

My minimalist approach constantly backfires, but like every first date, I trudge ahead with hope and a glimmer in my eye expecting that something will come out of the experience.  And, as with pretty much every first date, I’m just so completely dead-fucking wrong.  I woke up the next morning to discover more water on my floor.

At this point, I decide to do just a little bit more.  That’s right – if doin’ nuthin’ wasn’t going to work, then perhaps just a little bit more might. I actually EXAMINED the hot water heater and found the temperature dial.  There were three settings: HOT, WARM and VACATION.  I didn’t realize “vacation” was a temperature, but you work with what you have.  The current setting read HOT, which seemed correct to my know-nothing mind. If one wants hot water, one should set hot water heater to HOT.  Yep, no problems with that, nuh-unh.

But, if temperature was the problem, I decided to see what would happen using the VACATION setting.  True, I was now back from vacation and consequently about a week late here, but even my water-heating-newbie brain figured this would cool the whole tank down and hopefully I’d be able to turn it back to HOT after a day or two.  I then went upstairs and ran some more hot water to help the process along.  “Let’s see how that works!” said I, and then I probably went to take a nap or surf the Internet or eat a brownie (which would be pretty impressive, since I have no brownies in the house) or did some other completely pointless task that didn’t involve me calling a plumber.

But, as do vacations, I was lulled into a false sense of security.  The water had ceased to a mere dribble, then stopped altogether, and after another 12 hours passed, I turned the temperature back to HOT last night so that I could enjoy a hot shower before leaving for work this morning.  *Cue songbirds* 

So when I woke up to the gusher and sufficient puddle on my floor this morning, I finally called Mr. Rooter. Craig, the “Mr. Rooter” who serviced my area, came an hour after I phoned in my plea, and told me my tmp valve was bad.  I can only assume this is the aforementioned “the valve” as referenced by my friend Ben.  Apparently, the valve went bad because I had my hot water heater set to “HOT.”  Shenanigans!  It turns out, singles like me who don’t use a lot of hot water really don’t need to have our water heaters set to “HOT.”   He replaced the valve, suggested I try the “WARM” setting, and then gradually raise the temperature if it isn’t hot enough – to a maximum of 120 degrees.  Not only would I extend the life of the hot water heater, I’d not completely roach my new tmp valve this time around, and I’d realize savings on my energy bill. 

Happy Anniversary, house! Please enjoy this $277 tmp valve! What's my present? Oh, um, shelter? Gee, thanks...I guess...

So now I have a new “the valve,” hot water that isn’t too hot, a few more years extension on my water heater, and a few more dollars in my pocket.  My first significant expense wasn’t so bad, it turns out (yay, savings!) and I learned something new.  I definitely wish I’d educated myself more about hot water heaters, though.  I think it’s time for me to take Furnaces 101Basic Home Maintenance or When Siding Goes Bad or some such.  Now where is that adult-education catalog?

Oh.  It’s way over there.  Across the room. 

Meh, I’ll just transfer another $100 to savings…

September 11, 2010

Reaping the Harvest, Not so Much the Bounty

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 2:12 pm

So right now I’m enjoying my grape tomatoes. Wonderfully delicious grape tomatoes that I can chop up in scrambled eggs, tacos, casseroles, salads and whatever.  If you saw these grape tomatoes, your jealousiter would quickly ding to 100, you’d be so envious.

That's right, you know you want some tomatoey goodness...

I’m REALLY enjoying them, you see, because that’s about all I got.

My Heirlooms are either taking a lot longer, or aren’t going to happen.  I didn’t have adequate support for them either, because I kept putting off buying a wire tree, and I when I remembered, I was then too lazy.  Once again, I’m my own worst enemy.  Someday, Lazy GamerGirl, we will throw down.

And yet again, my Roma tomatoes got what I’ve decided to call brown-bottom rot because it’s kind of funny.  I had the same problem last year, don’t know what causes it, and rather than research it and, y’know, learn, I’m just going to throw in the towel on Roma tomatoes from now on.

Lettuce?  Slugs.  Also, I think I planted the heads too close.  Garlic?  Apparently that never had a chance.  See, I took the fact that it was being sold in May to mean that it was in season and plantable and had even a remote chance of maturing.  Apparently not.  Someday, Bi-Mart, we will throw down.

The green bean plant chugged along just fine, thank you.  I enjoyed several rounds of beany goodness and then one day, the leaves went yellow and it started producing piss-poor yellow lumps of withered wannabeans.  I did research this issue, but found mostly taunting language about how hardy these plants are and that I’d become so sick of eating beans due to the plant’s high production volume that I’d be forced to give them away like so much zucchini.  Oh yeah?  Well, fuck you, Internet.

Pictured: Abject failure

The cilantro died after one production cycle, the rosemary is still hanging in there but seriously, how often does one use rosemary, and I’m on my third basil plant.

What’s made this all the more comical in a crying-on-the-inside kind of way is that my neighbors’ garden is just over the fence, directly behind my planter boxes.  If I peek through in my least stalker-like fashion, I can see three healthy tomato plants, lucious heads of lettuce and other vegetables I didn’t even know existed.  I’d pop my camera over the fence to take a picture so that you could see this lovely machination that puts my little operation to shame, but I don’t want the local authorities to come visit.  Again.

So for this growing season, it’s just me and my grape tomatoes.  Stupid nature.

August 23, 2010

5k Update: Weeks…?

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 4:05 pm

Well, it’s been interesting.  And by interesting, I mean shitty.

For the last several weeks, I’ve been stuck at a mile.  I can’t seem to break through.  And as a result, I’m losing the “runner’s high” feeling and my desire to do it.

I have also missed my minimum running times – which means I’m technically ineligible to now reward myself as I meet subsequent goals.  Which also means I’m even LESS motivated to do it.

But then a weird thing happened.

I kept at it.  I kept running that mile, even though I was frustrated I didn’t have it in me to do more. I kept running that mile, even though I started to hate it and dread it.  I kept running that mile, even though the track I run at has been a crapshoot as to whether I can get on it (events, kids going back to school, games, etc.) and I’ve had to go back to running on asphalt at times.  And I kept running that mile even though the ridiculously hot weather returned and I had to get up early and run in the morning, or I’d lose my shot for the entire day. 

And then today, I broke through – I ran 1.5 miles. 

Two things have helped: One, is that I’ve been eating healthier.  Chicken, brown rice, tons of veggies, low-fat stuff and just little bites of chocolate.  Eating better and watching what I eat has resulted in weight loss, which encourages me to exercise, which encourages me to eat better.  Yeah, I know, “duh.”  But it’s a cycle that I’m enjoying.

Secondly, I’ve finally noticed a difference in my fitness level.  I can tell I’m more flexible when I stretch after a run and in general.  I can walk quickly now and not feel any burn in my calves.  I can squat, bend over, and dance better, longer and easier.  I’m seeing results EVERYWHERE and I think that’s what helped me break through today.  It’s was just another half mile, but to me, today, it was progress.

So, maybe I’ll reward myself again.  I have kept at it, even when I’ve wanted to quit, even when I’ve gone weeks without advancing and even without the desire.  And if I make 3k, that’s still an accomplishment and still worth a new gaming PC.

Now I just have to get my butt in gear before the new Star Wars MMORPG comes out.🙂 I have until January.  There’s no way I should take that long.  I’m hoping to run that 3k by the end of September, at the latest.  It’s a good goal to shoot for, and I could use another.

Ok, ready for a post that isn’t about running?  Yeah, me too.

July 30, 2010

5k Update: Weeks Five and Six

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 7:31 am

Well, there’s nothing to report on weeks five and six.  My knees were so messed up, I ended up taking two weeks off.  After the first week, there was still a lot of tenderness, and I wanted to make sure that was gone before I stared up again.

I did go to Portland Running Company and found out that I overpronate.  What that means is that my feet roll in when I run.  I’m not surprised.  I can see my shadow when I run, and it ain’t the pretty,  graceful, light-on-your-feet gazelle run that others do.  But the shoes I tried would help with that, she claimed, and she was right.  I started back up again this week (week seven).  And while I wasn’t able to advance to the next level, I still ran just over a mile the first day after being off for two weeks.  To me, that was an acceptable accomplishment, especially since I’d only been doing it for a month before I took the break.

Unfortunately, my knee pain is still prevalent when I run on concrete or asphalt, so I’m off the local high school track.  I have to drive to get there, and I miss just being able to leave my house and go for a run.  Now I have to incorporate a drive.  I’m also facing logistical issues that I didn’t have to before, such as what one does with one’s car keys while running.  Before, I just took my house key and slipped it in my sports bra; now, I have the car keys, house key and key fob to lock/unlock my car (only way to alarm it is using the fob).  These conundrums life hands me!

The good part about this track, though, is that I have zero knee pain when I run on it, and even the next day I barely register any soreness at all.  Additionally, I can now keep track of how far I’ve run via measurements, not minutes.  I was counting in my head before, and this way I know that if I’ve run around the track twice well, that’s half a mile.  It means no counting in my head, which is good in that I don’t lose track, but bad in that it’s sometimes harder for me to keep focus.  There just isn’t as much to look at, so it’s a more boring experience than before.

I missed running; I daresay I like running now.  I still have to kick myself in the butt to do it, but once I’ve completed a run, I feel great.  I get the “Runner’s High” feeling now.  After a run, I’ve felt equal parts euphoric, powerful, and free.  One time I even bawled my brains out – residual divorce pain, likely – and it all made sense and felt great.  I’m certainly not an athlete, certainly not going to win any races, but maybe, just maybe, I’ll feel comfortable actually calling myself “a runner” sooner, rather than later.

PDXGamerGirl, the Runner.  It’s been nice meeting her.

July 14, 2010

5k Update: Weeks Three and Four

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 3:29 pm
So week three was a continuation of the previous weeks: pretty easy, moved up to “the next level,” and started actually enjoying myself. Go, me, woo-hoo, huzzahs all around.

Then the fourth week hit. 

The fourth week, frankly, kicked my ass.  Rather, it kicked several body parts.

First, it got hot. REALLY hot — up to 100 degrees one day, bracketed by 95 and 93.  But I got my butt up early somehow (a real challenge for me) before it got TOO hot, and ran.

Apparently, these are an important factor.

The spiders were also rather busy the last week, making webs. As I was running on the sidewalk, I was constantly running through their virtually invisible homes and getting webbing all over me.  Also, maybe the spiders themselves.  Yet, I ran.

Finally, I was tired.  The heat makes me worthless.  It was a bitch, it was miserable, and I couldn’t seem to cool down.  And yet, I ran.

And then my knees went out.

Ok, slight exaggeration – I still have them; they haven’t taken a holiday, but they’re messed up.  I didn’t even consider the fact that I might be injuring myself.  I’ve never had my gait evaluated (apparently that’s a “duh” that I wasn’t aware of), had a professional shoe fitting or realized how my sloppy, plodding running style might be injuring my knees.  But injure them it has.  It really, really hurts to run, so I’m taking this week off from it, and heading to Portland Running Company to get an evaluation and get fitted with good running shoes.  I hope the pain is gone by Sunday, when I plan to start running again.

I hate to take the week off, but I don’t want to permanently injure my knees.  Thankfully, I’m discovering that I actually miss running, so I’m confident I’ll get back to it.  My focus is still there.  I just hope my knees follow.

July 2, 2010

Why I Don’t Tweet

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 12:27 pm

Clearly I’m someone who believes the following things:

  1. Technology and social networking are fun and useful.
  2. Writing is fun and useful.
  3. That everyone is interested in everything I think or do.

Yet despite these things, I don’t care about Twitter.  Maybe it’s because the first things I heard about Twitter were “Ashton Kutcher” and “likes it.”  Maybe it’s because Jim Carrey, Courtney Love and other celebrities have abused the hell out of it in some seemingly desperate attempt to connect to the few, non-life-having people who think their insights are in any way relevant or interesting to their own lives.  Maybe it’s because I could seriously give a shit about what anyone I know is doing, all the time.

Don’t get me wrong, I like my friends and my family, but I don’t need to know that anyone I know is taking a dump, getting gas, pondering his garden or watching TV with her boyfriend.  I’m satisfied with the mundane status updates that I read (and sometimes post) on FB every day.  And even I, who, again, believes that everything I think or do is interesting, realizes that I’m the only person who believes that.  Well, ok, maybe my mom does too.  Regardless, no one needs to know what I’m doing every hour, or every minute of every day.  I don’t WANT to be reachable, available and online all the time, even if maybe I am.  Sometimes I’m lazy on Sundays.

If I had a business that could use the promotion, then I’d join Twitter.  If I worked for an industry where it was encouraged or helpful, then I’d join Twitter.  But I don’t get the value of it.  Of course, I still prefer purchasing CDs to iTunes, video games with hard copy manuals to downloadable content and PDFs, and books to Kindle.  So maybe I’m just a luddite after all.  

Feel free to tweet your incredulity at that.  Because I’ll never know.  

June 30, 2010

An Open Letter…

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 9:22 pm

…to the same four people who view me everyday, regardless of whether I post something good, bad, or not at all.  I thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Though you might consider getting a hobby.  Just sayin’.

June 25, 2010

5K Update: Weeks One and Two

Filed under: Random Thoughts — pdxgamergirl @ 11:58 am

So, it’s time for an update on my 5k progress.  I’ve stuck to the schedule and increased my running time as I’d hoped I’d be able to do in week two.  I feel like I should be running more, and more often, but the plan I’m on strongly discourages trying to “get ahead” for fear of burning out my newbie runner self.  Being the rule follower that I am, I have listened to the plan and am sticking to the routine. But, all the running has given me more energy, so I find that even on my “rest” days I feel like getting exercise.  So, overall, I’m just more active, walking instead of driving when I can, and I’ve even signed up for a dance class.  Very cool, yes indeedy. 

I’m thrilled that I’m on track and, so far, it hasn’t been too difficult.  The weather has even been cooperative.  Honestly, the biggest challenge I’ve had has been to keep running by all the kitties I could be petting.  I can tell, though, that next week, week three, is going to be a little more difficult.  The plan calls for me to increase my running time somewhat significantly.  Right now, I’m running more, but only short spurts with lots of brisk walking breaks in-between.  Starting next week, I’ll have fewer  breaks, simply because I’ll be running longer.  So, I anticipate needing to stay on week three for a couple of weeks while I get used to running for longer time periods.  That’s why next week’s reward is new sandals, see… 

Other than increased energy (and, for some reason, better skin) I haven’t noticed any other major changes. Unfortunately, because of the increased exercise, I’ve gotten lazier with my diet so I haven’t lost anything, but I’m going to go back to eating better. (So long ice cream, welcome back Greek yogurt!)

Happy Friday!

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