The Thoughts of a Frumpy Professor

............................................ ............................................ A blog devoted to the ramblings of a small town, middle aged college professor as he experiences life and all its strange variances.

Thursday, February 28, 2013


There really is art in the practice of science research.   It *IS* an artistic endeavor.  However, it is a far different beast from the traditional arts.  I greatly enjoy art and visit museums and other art venues often.  However, I often wish I had more time to really immerse myself in art appreciation, or even in the pursuit of a more traditionally artistic pursuit.  I guess it is not that I do not have time, it is that I have not made time for it.  Sometimes, like today, I wish I had, or that I would do so.   The above paiting is Claude Monet's "Chef Pere Paul".  The photograph is of Monet, himself. 


 Today's (Thursday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Wednesday's [2/27] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Wednesday) = 3 bowls

Walking Day 1621 / SOPS Day 0

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Herbivore, Carnivore, or Omnivore?

Leslie asked me if I was a vegetarian yesterday.  It is a question that I get asked fairly frequently in my blog world and also in my tangible, day-to-day world as well.  The short answer is NO, I am not a vegetarian.  However the full answer is far more complex.  Probably 95% of my diet would qualify as vegetarian.

For the last 10 - 15 years AT LEAST, and probably quite a bit longer, I have typically eaten only 2-3 meals a week that contain some meat.  The meat is mostly chicken or turkey.  Once in a while I will have fish.   And the portions of meat in these “meat meals” tends to be smaller on average as well.  I think it has been probably at least 2 years since I have eaten beef.  And, it has been at least 5 years since we have cooked beef at home.  The time lines in which I have eaten pork would be similar, with the caveat that I have had 5-10 pieces of pepperoni and 5-10 pieces of Italian sausage on pizza during the last few years.  I have had lamb on a gyro probably once a year. 

So, the reality is I eat relatively little meat.  Why?  Well, there are two factors.... a) I really just do not like the texture or flavor of pork or beef, and b) I just do not like the smell of beef or pork cooking, nor the smell of most meat cooking.  Chicken and turkey are exceptions.  They smell reasonably good while cooking. 

I hunt (and fish) for a variety of reasons.  The “high-brow” concepts for my hunting and fishing include a) since I do eat meat, and I am in favor of people eating meat if they like it, I should be a willing participant in the procurement of meat.  Hunting and fishing allow me to experience in a realistic fashion the costs of eating meat.  I think it is a much more honest route to take than to be an anti-hunting, anti-animal use person who buys hamburger or steaks for the grill in plastic containers, all neat and tidy.  When I have bagged a deer or caught fish, I was being a part of the circle of life that it REALLY takes to be a person who eats carnivorously or omnivorously.   Hunting is also a way to feel kinship with my relatives who have died, and my ancestors who had to hunt for survival.  As a biologist, hunting also allows me to be more realistically a part of the true environment and ecosystem as a living being who is anatomically designed to eat omnivorously. 

From a more colloquial perspective, when I go fishing or hunting this year, it will be more for the camaraderie and fun.  At deer camp this coming November, the hunt will likely be a bit of a misnomer for me, as I will likely only spend a short time in the woods this year. I *will* have my license, and my rifle will be cleaned and ready but, I am not particularly interested in "bagging a buck" this year. If I were to spot a true prize rack on a buck, I would be glad to get a beautiful trophy mount of the head to put in my den, and I would donate the cleaned venison to the homeless shelter. However, the reality is that I am not grandly fond of venison. 

However, I am very much in favor of hunting and feel as a person who does consume meat, that it is my responsibility to be a hunter. To be a meat eater, one should be willing to participate in the whole of the process to attain said meat. I think it is disingenuous for people to be anti-hunting yet they allow others to kill for them so they can buy their pre-packaged chicken, beef, etc. As a meat eater (again relatively infrequently... perhaps 2-3 times a week these days), I am very comfortable participating in the whole process of collecting meat for consumption. Deer hunting is one way in which I participate. Fishing, which I find more enjoyable of late, is another way to participate.

Now, you may ask, why the hell do I go to deer camp if I am not extremely interested in bagging a buck? Well, if you ask that question, you my friends, have never been to deer camp. Deer camp is a place where fellows can gather and shed the tedious trappings of modern society. No ties, no phones, no shaving. Instead, there is ample drinking, boisterous card playing, engorgement on unhealthy but delicious foods, a general slovenly attitude about appearance, and a helluva lot of good times, memories and fun. That is why I am looking forward to deer camp.

So, no, I am not a vegetarian.  I eat a some dairy and eggs.  And, I eat 2-3 meals a week that have some chicken, turkey, or fish.


 Today's (Wednesday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Tuesday's [2/26] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Tuesday) = 3 bowls

Walking Day 1620 / SOPS Day 0

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Stuffed Peppers

I am not really in a mood to think about much emotionally or mentally. I am just going to work today, and try to get things off my plate here at the U.   That is....  until I can get home and EAT things off my dinner plate.  Tonight, I am in charge of the kitchen, and I am going to make stuffed peppers, yams, and a mixed vegetable and wheat berry dish with a herb and garlic sauce. 


Today's (Tuesday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Monday's [2/25] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Monday) = 3 bowls

Walking Day 1619 / SOPS Day 0

Monday, February 25, 2013

I Am The Walrus

A student commented to me after class today that I had a "walrus moustache".  I told her that, yes, that would be a technically correct statement, but that usually the term is not used when a person also wears a beard along with the moustache.

It was a long weekend.  SOPS has had to be restarted as you can see.

I never used to think I was an emotional fellow.  Well, that is not so true... I knew I had A LOT of emotions INSIDE.  Yet, I had been able to have a rather stoic demeanor at least when I was anxious, or upset, or sad.  I do not think I have changed, but it seems my emotions apparently are billboarded across my face these days.

I am not entirely sure why, but while most people dismissed the song, I have always greatly enjoyed "I Am The Walrus" by the Beatles (you may hear the song below). I think I enjoy that sort of cacophony of sound when it is still rather linear in focus like this is musically.  


Today's (Monday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Sunday's [2/24] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Sunday) = 3 bowls

Saturday's [2/23] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Saturday) = 10 bowls

Walking Day 1618 / SOPS Day 0

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Traipsing to A Wedding

We have to travel on a four hour car ride to a wedding today.  It is not the most exciting thing I can imagine doing today.  I hope they have gin at the reception.


Today's (Saturday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Friday's [2/23] Goal = 3 bowls
Actual consumption (Wednesday) = 3 bowls

Walking Day 1616 / SOPS Day 11

Friday, February 22, 2013

Inching Closer 

My wife and I are both inching closer to making "the decision".    It is starting to feel just a LITTLE BIT less frightening and overwhelming than before. 

I am trying to find a new science fiction author to read.  However, I am a little picky about the types of science fiction I enjoy.  I do not like fantasy style works like "The Lord of the Rings" or anything of that ilk.  I do not like war/battle stories as the major or minor focus.  I do not like science fiction that takes leaps of faith the require continual supension of disbelief about the characters continually defying the basic laws of physics (shape shifters and all that sort of malarkey).  The type of science fiction I really enjoy and want to find more of is the more psychological/sociological science fiction that is like "Brave New World" or "Farenheit 451" or "1984".

Any suggestions?  


Today's (Friday's) Goal = 3 bowls   

Thursday's [2/21] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Wednesday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1615 / SOPS Day 10

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Muscle Bound

Brief updates in relationship to several recent comments:

a.  I have not seen much sunshine, as it is very scant in my neck of the woods at this time of year.  Typically I arrive to the U in darkness, and leave either at dusk or in darkness.  But, I can see hints of a return to a more light world, and know it is coming.  I have often wondered if some of my "issues" about saddness/worry/anxiety/rumination may in part be a touch of seasonal affective disorder

b.  I have contemplated the potential benefits and risks of one of the various SSRI medications, and talk and teach my students about them in most of my courses.  From what I have read, and to my manner of thinking, the Prozac variant seems the least problematic, has a neurological etiology that  seems least likely to permanently alter in a negative way the neural pathways in the brain, and is also the oldest form of SSRI.  At this time, I feel that trying to fix/work through my saddness/worry/anxiety/rumination issues without medication is the route I feel most comfortable with.

c.  I have never tried cannabis in any manner or form.  In some ways, I regret this lack of experimentation that has been such a part and parcel of all generations since we "Boomers" arrived on the scene.  I never tried it, not because I wasn't curious.  Instead, I did not try it because I KNEW how much I relished and enjoyed pipe tobacco.  And, I had goals and ambitions that I was not sure I was truly capable of attaining in my youth (graduate school, Ph.D., professorship).  I did not want to put further at risk, my potential ability to attain those things by trying cannabis.  I thought often to myself... well, it is probably nice, but nothing too amazing or difficult, but.... but.... what if I really like it?  What then?  Would it end up being something I became heavily involved in, and if so, would it alter my path and goals? Additionally, since I KNEW I liked smoking (pipe tobacco), I thought there would be a good chance I would enjoy cannabis.  And, at that stage in my life, did I want to ADD something to my routine that i) would be problematic to obtain, ii) was illegal.  Even though I think it is foolish for it to be illegal, the reality is that it IS illegal (except now for Washington and Colorado), and that very fact of its illegality would complicate my life.   So, I kept postponing trying it.  In the modern world of today, I do think I would be willing to give it a try now at my older state, but, it is unlikely that I will ever do so.  

d.  Potentially having my saddness/worry/anxiety/rumination be in relationship to a physiological withdrawl from pipe tobacco... could potentially be occurring.  However,  if it is playing any role, I suspect it is rather small. 


So, what am I doing?  I am increasing the vigor and intensity of my exercise.  I am trying to physically exhaust myself prior to getting into my office at the U each morning.  Today, I did a  7 mile walk (getting up at 4:30 to help accommodate the time), Worked through 50 repetitions of every weight machine for upper body strength at the U gym (normally, I have been doing 10-15), and I ran (jogged) 1.5 miles on the indoor track.  Hell, if I keep this up, MAYBE I will get to look like Paul Tuetel (shown in the picture above).  I wouldn't mind that. 

While getting to look more massive like Tuetel is a pipe dream, I do think that this effort will have physical benefit for me, and I also do feel the exhaustion from the added workouts have helped me to reduce my saddness/worry/anxiety/rumination.... at least I feel better during the last few days when I have boosted this exercise effort. 

On the "worrisome, two-good-choices" department.... my wife and I have been doing some additional "figuring" of finances, future goals, potential choices and risks, and so, we are still both ruminating (but I am trying to only do positive rumination), and we are hoping to make the final decision soon. 


Today's (Thursday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Wednesday's [2/19] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Wednesday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1614 / SOPS Day 9


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Better In My Head

I have said on previous occasions that I know that I have a problem with ruminating too damn much about things.  I admit it, and I do not like that part of my personality.  But, it is sure a helluva lot harder to STOP ruminating than it is to know I should stop ruminating. 

Ruminate means:
  1. Think deeply about something: "we sat ruminating on the nature of existence".
  2. (of a ruminant) Chew the cud
Maybe it is something ingrained in my genes to do this?  It is a very common trait in professors.   In many ways it is a GOOD thing to do.  It allows me to conduct my research.  It is a significant aspect of my abilities as a teacher (I can think of pretty good examples and analogies to help students learn).  But ruminating also can have a very sinister, darker side.  It is this sinister, darker side I seem to have a hard time putting aside. 

This darker rumination stems from fear.  Fear of the unknown, fear of death, fear of loss, fear of immutable change, fear of not being loved, fear of being alone in life. 

But, that darker rumination is all a huge waste of time, a huge waste of my energy, and a huge waste of ME as a person.  So, I have to keep fighting against it.  I need to battle it with the arsenal I have at hand.  Previously, I have used my walking as a part of arsenal.  I have used other exercise in my arsenal, and I have frequently used my pipe and pipe tobaccos as part of my arsenal to fight and combat this "dark rumination". 

The one aspect of all of the three is that they consume time and effort away from dark rumination.  With SOPS V2, unfortunately, a sizeable chunk of my arsenal has been eliminated. 

But, I can "pump up" the other two aspects of my arsenal to try to compensate.  I did get up again today at 5:00 (actually 4:55am) and forced myself to get on the road and get my body moving on the 5 mile walk.  I did force myself to get to the gym and I lifted weights again and again until my arms (and my mind) were exhausted.  I ran a mile on the indoor track as well to tire myself  (and my mind) out.  It seems to have helped.  I feel much more like my typical self right now.  If I start to feel the "dark rumination" returning, perhaps I will take another stroll, perhaps around the U or something similar.  The last several days, I didn't get myself out of bed until about 7:15 or so, and after walking, I was already pushing my time to get to the U, and hence had no time for the gym.

So, while my current situation is still progressing and no decision has been made of yet (and yes, both continue to be positive, and yes, also both will change my family's life forever.... and yes.... if I think about it too much, I start to drift into dark rumination about the anxiety and fear of I have about the loss of control I have when the choice is eventually made (we can never go back to what was before), I am wrestling with my assinie emotions about this, and I am trying and succeeding to a degree, to force myself back into a better mental focus. 

Rumination can be good, or it can be downright wretchedly ugly and sinister.  It has that "slippery slope" aspect to it. 

The other definition of ruminate (to chew the cud) has given me a thought.... I could perhaps start enjoying chewing tobacco in lieu of my pipe on those days that are not SOPS V2 friendly.   It has a modicum of appeal even though I have not really ever been much of a chewer.  But, I know I am only joking about it, because a) it is not really in keeping with what I would like to accomplish with SOPS.  and b) because my wife would be annoyed as heck at me if I started to chew and wanted a spitoon.  But, chewing tobacco could be a reasonably human oriented action akin to chewing cud.


Today's (Wednesday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Tuesday's [2/19] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Tuesday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1613 / SOPS Day 8

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Still Debating, Still Stressed, Still Sad

The situation I spoke of on Valentine's Day that was about how my wife and I were having difficulty with a very important decision.... it is still going on.  I dislike the time this is taking greatly.  My wife and I both feel very edgy and stressed about it.  Fortunately, since she loves me and I love her, we are both still able to treat each other kindly even in amidst the stress.  She is so wonderful and kind to me.  The several times during this weekend when I would cry in sadness and sorrow, she would hug me and help me to feel less scared.  The times when I was able to laugh this past weekend, she was there with me enjoying the time.

When I was crying the deep, despondent sobs I a few times this weekend, she would hug me tightly and wipe away my tears.  When she noticed that the tears had made my beard wet, she brought a towel to me and gently rubbed my beard dry.   

While we still try to make this decision (and again, both of them could be potentially very good), I know she will continue to be my friend, my love, my confidant, my companion, my sweetheart, my person, my reason for trying to be as good of a person as I can be. 

She understands how hard it is for me to embrace change.  She understands how risk aversive I am.  She understands how I fear I am not a good "steward" with my life.  She understands how I am, and also knows how I want to be.  She also knows for me that I have trouble accepting the idea that *either* decision will be fine.  I keep thinking that one has to be better for us than the other, but I cannot figure out which one.  The fear of picking the wrong decision is what is so weighty on my mind. 


I hate and despise myself sometimes.  Sometimes I think I might understand why, but in reality, most of the time I do not have any idea why I feel that way.  I do not know how else to state this bit of information.  When I despise and hate myself, I typically feel like crawling into bed and not moving for days.  I have not actually crawled into bed and not moved for days, but it is what I FEEL like doing.  Instead, I FORCE myself out of bed and try to force myself to adopt as "normal" a daily routine as I can.  I have felt like staying in bed and not moving for days now.   I have had a very difficult time getting up at my normal 5am.  Much of the time, I do not end up getting up until 7:15, and by then I have really screwed up most of my day, which only adds to my stress, sadness and self-loathing.  I think I till try to put extra effort into FORCING myself out of bed at 5am again.  I usually feel happier when I do.  However, when that alarm goes off at 5, and I wake up from a sleep that is usually NOT full of fear, and remember all my anxieties, I so desperately want to drift off again into that sleep.  It is a conundrum.  To begin to feel better, I think I need to force myself to get up, but that is easier said than done, when I feel such anxiety upon awakening.  


One of my wife's sibling had to go into surgery on Saturday for an emergency procedure.  It seems to have gone well, and she may discharged today.  A spouse of a co-worker passed away on Sunday.  He was a wonderful fellow.  I was just at his birthday celebration a few months ago.  He was only 65.    It is so very sad to contemplate.  He gave me many pointers about running, as he knew I have been trying to figure out how to become a pseudo-runner during the last 2 years.    He was a very good runner.  He died of cancer. 


Today's (Tuesday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Monday's [2/18] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Monday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1612 / SOPS Day7

Monday, February 18, 2013

Thank you (Sarcasm)

I appreciate all the wonderful 37 comments (in case it is difficult to interpret, I am saying this first sentence with sarcasm).  I left the ones that were not hurtful to people up. I sincerely thank those people who did comment in a kind fashion.  

If people plan to continue this foolishness here, please know that I will simply (and regretably) need to move to moderated comments.

Since this post is all about you who are choosing to be hurtful, I guess there is really no need to write anything that concerns me today.


Today's (Monday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Sunday's [2/17] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Sunday) = 0 bowls

Saturday's [2/16] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Saturday) = 0 bowls

 Friday's [2/15] Goal = 3 bowls... a Special Occasion Day
Actual consumption (Friday) = 3 bowls

Thursday's [2/14] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Thursday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1611 / SOPS Day 6

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine's Day

Today is Valentine's Day.  It is a day about love.  Romantic love like I have with my wife is the most obvious form, but a broader love is important and valuable to think about as well.  I so love my wife.  I so love my kids, I so love my family. 

There really isn't much else of any importance for us to do on the time we are on Earth.  We should love one another.  It isn't always easy.  But it is always worth it. 

I hope that today my emotions stay more positive.  Yesterday, was very rough, and I was a basket case for part of the day.  My drive to the U was filled with wracking, deep sobs of despair and gloom as tears streamed into my beard and moustache.  It was all very foolish, but it was also very, very real. 

My anxiety all stems from a resistance on my part to changes.  Being very much the stable, stay-the-same kind of person I have always been....  has served me quite well across these many decades.  Yet, at the same time, my dislike of change, my fear of change, my strong emotional resistance to change can (and does) hinder me as well.  My wife and I are trying to make an important decision that involves change.  I am not at liberty to describe the details at this time, but the decision we make will set us on a new course for our future.  This is true regardless of if I resist change and stay the same, or if I accept change and all the anxiety it induces in me.  Both paths could be wildly wonderful and exciting.  Yet, I fear not choosing the best path. 

It is all convoluted and difficult to deal with.  Basically, I am fearful of making this decision, regardless of which decision I make.  My wife feels similarly. 

If you do not understand my image above, it is part of my convoluted thinking.  The hearts represent Valentine's Day, and the coins represent "change".  In my odd sense of things, I find this a humorous image to post.  But, my humor is rather odd, or so I have been told.  My wife has told me that often. 


Today's (Thursday's) Goal = 0 bowls   

Wednesday's [2/13] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Wednesday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1607 / SOPS Day 2

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


It has been an emotionally rough time for me, hence the lack of posts.  I am still in the midst of a decision that is causing me extreme inner turmoil.  This turmoil  is causing me to examine myself deeply, way down to the core of my being. I feel utterly exhausted every day since this has been transpiring.

 I do not have the energy to try to put the thoughts to paper yet, but I will, eventually.  Also, because it is Ash Wednesday, I have decided to try to adopt SOPS V2 again.  So, if I make it, today will be day 1.

Today's (Wednesday's) Goal = 0 bowls 
Actual consumption (Tuesday) = 8 bowls
 Actual consumption (Monday) = 6 bowls
 Actual consumption (Sunday) = 6 bowls
 Actual consumption (Saturday) = 4 bowls
 Actual consumption (Friday) = 3 bowls 
Actual consumption (Thursday) = 4 bowls

Walking Day 1606 / SOPS Day 1

Friday, February 08, 2013

Snow & Blueberry Wine

We received a helluva lot of snow overnight, so I shall be spending the lion's share of the morning digging and plowing my way out.  It is usually a mindless, yet moderately enjoyable activity. 

Yesterday afternoon, I left the U a bit early because I had an appointment with a plumber back home to replace our sump pump.  Fortunately, the fellow did a great job and was done very quickly.  It gave me time to go see an old friend whom I have know for probably 15 years or so.  He is a trumpet player in the symphonic band I used to play bass clarinet and tenor saxaphone in for many, many years.  He is close to 80 years old now, but still is very active. As a widower, he now has a new gal in his life.  She is also in the band I used to be a part of.  She played the saprano clarinet.  Well, this friend of mine was hoping for me to come over, because he bought her a "new to her" clarinet that he wants to give to her.  But he wants to fix it up first, as it is a very high quality brand, but needs to be cleaned and reconditioned. 

My role in helping him, was due to a long standing hobby of mine.  For probably the last 25 years or so, I have had the hobby of buying old woodwind instruments (clarinets, bass clarinets, saxaphones (alto, tenor, C-melody, baratone), and flutes) that were in rough shape.  I greatly enjoyed tearing them down, taking off all the keys, repadding them, polishing up the nickle or silver bright work on the keys, putting in new mother-of-pearl inlays where needed, and rejuvinating the wood or getting tarnishes off the brass or silver on the horns themselves) and putting them all back together.  I have gotten pretty good at it over the years, and most instruments look brand new when I am done. 

Well, my friend didn't really want me to refurbish the instrument.  Instead he wanted me to help him get started in the process because he wanted to do this all himself for his new gal.  I am more than happy to help him out with geting the parts he will need, and the proper cleaners and tarnish removers.   I think as long as he is careful about the task, he should be fine.  I will get him the supplies after they arrive, I will get him started by showing him how to get a few of the keys off of the beast he wants to work on.  It should be fun for him.  I always enjoy it.

He was very appreciative.  He didn't need to, but he gave me two bottles of his homemade, blueberry wine to take home last night.  I had a glass of his stock with him before I left, and I have to say it was really damn good.  My wife and I will have to drink a bottle of it soon. 

I am learning some new (and I think valuable) things about my pipes and pipe smoking that I will probably try to expound upon on Saturday.  Thes insights may be helpful as I gear up to give SOPS V2 another go. 


Today's (Friday's) Goal = 3 bowls 
Thursday's [2/5] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Thursday) = 4 bowls

Walking Day 1601 / SOPS Day 0

Thursday, February 07, 2013


Today marks the 1600th day I have walked five miles every day in a row.  Today also marks my mother's 85 birthday.  I was planning on talking more in depth  about both events, but problems have arisen that make that impossible.  I feel very sad.  Hopefully, that will improve.


Today's (Thursday's) Goal = 0 bowls 
Wednesday's [2/5] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Wednesday) = 4  bowls

Walking Day 1600 / SOPS Day 0

Wednesday, February 06, 2013


I have never tried to do this before, but this video so fits my sense of humor, that I was rolling around on the floor laughing so hard when I first viewed this, that I felt it valuable enough to share.  As most of you know, I do not really give a damn about football.  So, the "Super" Bowl was not high on my priority list of things to do last Sunday.  But, I do enjoy creativity, and I do enjoy some forms of humor.  So, usually I will go and look at some of the commercials that are aired during the "Super" Bowl, because they are often fun.  Well, fun is what I was expecting, but I was not anticipating a commercial that would hit damn near every facet of both of my funny bones and have me guffawing robustly.

To me, the humor that is important to me stems from a) the gentle, unassuming, bearded "Doritos guy" who finds it remarkable that he found a pet that likes Doritos like he does, b) the large stockpile of Doritos the fellow has on hand, and c) his initial willingness to share.  The rest of the video is great, of course, but is the set-up that offers the real humor for me.  An added bonus that ties in the end scene, however, is that (and I did not notice this during my first viewing) was that the prior owner had a neck brace and crutches, which now is undoubtably due to the angry pygmy goat.  

Many of you probably already have seen this commerical, but even if you have, it is well worth viewing again.

Today's (Wednesday's) Goal = 0 bowls  
Tuesday's [2/5] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Tuesday) = 2 bowls

Walking Day 1599 / SOPS Day 0

Tuesday, February 05, 2013


I had a disagreement with my wife yesterday.  Things have been resolved and we are back in a normal (positive) place. 

I the midst of that time, I decided to smoke my pipe and pipe tobacco.  This WAS NOT my wife's fault.  It was fully my decision.  It was a stupid, idiotic decision.  But, it was a decision I fully made, and I am fully responsible for.  Now I get to start back at zero days again.

If there is anything to learn about this, it is that when I feel negative emotionally (sad, upset, frustrated), I want to smoke my pipe.  Well, I want to smoke my pipe when I am happy too, but I have adequate coping strategies for those emotions.  What I need to figure out, is how to deal with these periods of time where I feel that sad, upset, or frustrated emotion. 


Today's (Tuesday's) Goal = 0 bowls  
Monday's [2/4] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Monday) = 4 bowls

Walking Day 1598 / SOPS Day 0

Monday, February 04, 2013


The late afternoon and evening were both very nice yesterday, and the day therefore ended on a positive note.  Happily, I feel surprisingly motivated today and I plan to try to accomplish a helluva lot.  And then, I might also try to sneak away early to have a "movie date" with my wife in the afternoon.  We shall see.    SOPS V2 seems to be working as I want it to at the moment.  Part of this is due to damn stubborness.  But that is ok. 


Today's (Monday's) Goal = 0 bowls
Sunday's [2/3] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Sunday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1597 / SOPS Day 11

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Damn Hard

Staying away from my pipes was an awfully damn challenging thing for me yesterday.  I think there were a number of times yesterday where I felt like the way the fellow looks in the above image.   I think it was a mixture of a) having an unfocused and unscheduled Saturday with little planned to accomplish, and b) the after effects of having the wonderful fun on enjoying my pipes the evening before.   I must have thought of my pipes and wanting to smoke some pipe tobacco at least 50 times yesterday.  But, I was successful in refraining.

Oh well, it is all a learning process of sorts.  Maybe I am learning how to cope with that sort of feeling?  Perhaps it will always be a part of the process if I am successful in adopting SOPS V2?  Or, perhaps it simply means I need a more carefully constructed plan of how to not have the cravings on Saturdays?  

Today, we have a distant relative's birthday party to attend.  It is on my wife's side of the family.  It is not typically the most relaxing of experiences for a variety of reasons.  In the past, my pipe has been a big part of my coping mechanisms to simply muddle through the event.  I will be thinking of how to succeed through this without my pipes. 

Yet, even with that "party" to get through, I am really looking forward to coming home afterwards and being with my family at home and having a nice late afternoon and evening.  That is when I will feel most happy today.    That, and when I was walking outside in the beautifully frigid air with the dog at 5:30.


Today's (Sunday's) Goal = 0 bowls
Saturday's [2/2] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Saturday) = 0  bowls

Walking Day 1596 / SOPS Day 10

Saturday, February 02, 2013

Grand 'Old Time

The special occasion yesterday in SOPS V2 was a wonderful and grand success.  I had a great time, driving in my truck, visiting with my elderly father-in-law, and general carousing.  The three pipes were sublimely beautiful and enjoyable.  My first pipe was filled with a very hearty and robust burley.  It set the occasion off right with very pleasant massaging of the neurons in my brain.  The second bowlful was of an aromatic blend featuring the tincture of raspberry.  And, the third bowl was again the very hearty and robust burley. 

Very nice indeed.  Here is my hoping that I and my family have a wonderful weekend as well!


Today's (Saturday's) Goal = 0 bowls
Friday's [2/1] Goal = 3 bowls
Actual consumption (Friday) = 3  bowls

Walking Day 1595 / SOPS Day9

Friday, February 01, 2013

Yes or No Depends on Snow


Today is the one day this week that has been identified by me as a "special occasion pipe smoking day".  I have been looking forward to heading out across the county and going to visit my elderly father-in-law for libations and pipes.  Yet, there is a *potential* for some snow.  If the snow occurs in a decent amount, that may force the cancellation of  the visit.  While I would miss visiting with him, and I would miss having the opportunity to smoke some pipe tobacco, whichever way it ends up going weather wise, it will be fine. I do think there is slightly greater than a 50% chance I will get to go later in the afternoon. 

The wind this morning during my outdoor 5 mile walk was very, very brisk and biting.  I had icecicles hanging from moustache and beard sort of like the fellow above, by the time I returned.  I took the dog out for a shorter walk as well, and then went to the gym to weight train and then ran (untimed) 1.5 miles without stopping.


Today's (Friday's) Goal = 0 bowls or 3 bowls
Thursday's [1/31] Goal = 0 bowls
Actual consumption (Thursday) = 0 bowls

Walking Day 1594 / SOPS Day8