Saturday, April 21, 2012

Remodel, Exercise Hell, Detroit Libraries & Pudge

No, your eyes are not deceiving you - I did indeed do a little tweaking to the blog this weekend.  The banner and color scheme are pretty much the same, with the biggest shift happening to the side bar - which is now on the right hand side, with more space between elements.


Last weekend My Man and I had to do some unexpected traveling (sadly, for a family funeral), and every time I travel I'm reminded of how badly I've let myself go.  Which means, yep - I'm back on the exercise wagon.

Please shoot me now.

I'm also trying to be a bit more diligent about what I'm eating - although I would hardly constitute it as a "diet."  More like avoiding all the fun stuff that I like to eat that I know I shouldn't.  Seriously, I have the exquisite culinary standards of your average 12-year-old boy. 

We have a college friend getting married in August.  Here's hoping I'll be able to buy a new dress in a smaller size by then.  It will just be a matter of finding that small shred of will power I left lying around here somewhere.....


My mother is the Queen Of Newspaper Clippings.  She's read the newspaper every day for as long as I can remember, and even with the advent of the Internet, she still clips cartoons and articles to give to her children - no matter where we are in the world.

Her latest clipping to yours truly involves the advent of "Outdoor Libraries" in Detroit.  In response to several branch closings within the Detroit Public Library system (budget cuts dontcha know), students at the University of Michigan collaborated with students from the Marcus Garvey Academy to design outdoor libraries.  Basically weather-proofing book cases with free books inside.  The whole thing works on the honor system, and is designed to draw attention to the branch closures.

I'm of two minds on this initiative.  My first reaction was to find the whole thing sad and depressing.  Is the message that we don't need libraries so long as there are piles of free books set up around various cities?  Then I got off my high horse and stopped feeling sorry for my chosen profession.  If anything, this is a nice way to illustrate what's going on with not only libraries, but public service in general.  Also, anything to get young people more involved in their communities is win-win as far as I'm concerned.


There's that crazy woman in the cape and tiara again
Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez is retiring from Major League Baseball.  Not surprising news, but a little bittersweet for me since Pudge (and his magnificent derriere) was the object of my affection once the Tigers clawed their way back into respectability after the dismal year that was 2003 (and the 119-loss season).

The shadow of steroids has followed him since the whole Canseco thing blew up, but like Teflon nothing ever really stuck to Pudge.  I like to delude myself into thinking that's because he is "innocent" - because honestly I have a hard time thinking of Pudge as the Professor Moriarty of the Steroids Era.

What he did, most definitely, do is save the Detroit Tigers.  Which sounds maudlin and silly given the organization has been around for over 100 years - but it's easy to forget for non-fans how truly terrible we were in 2003.  We had guys on the roster for those 119-losses that probably should have been playing that season in AA or AAA ball.  No free agent anywhere wanted anything to do with Detroit.  Play in Detroit?  Dear Lord, why?!?!?!

Then in waltzed Pudge.  Oh sure, he didn't do it out of the kindness of his own heart.  We certainly paid him well enough!  He was coming off a World Series win (with the Florida Marlins), and had proven he could still play the position of catcher at a very high level.  Once he signed?  The dominoes started falling.  We signed other free agents, we drafted some very good players, we rolled the dice on several trades that definitely worked in our favor.

And it started with Pudge.  You'll go into the Hall of Fame as a Texas Ranger, but you'll always be my Tiger.  Bon voyage you sexy beast.


nath said...

Hey Wendy :) I'm liking the tweaks! :) Subtle changes, but nice ones :)

Ugh, I know what you mean about exercising. I had another bout of vertigo, which means health panic ^_^; Good luck to the two of us :)

Kristie (J) said...

I'm liking the new look. And oh man, I so hear you about the watching what you eat and the exercising. I'm not on a "diet" either, but a self-induced, forced lifestyle change. I've been working out like a fiend and while I'm doing it, I'm hating it with a passion, but driving home, I have to admit I love the feeling of accomplishment I have. I've lost 14 lbs in 5 weeks so I'm glad of that. Mind you that's just a drop in the bucket of where I have to go - but a drop is a start. So good for you! We can encourage each other in our healthy life style journey.

Hilcia said...

I like the new look, Wendy. I think quite a few of us decided to do a bit of Spring redecorating. LOL!

I can't believe Pudge is retiring already! He was a powerhouse and a great catcher to boot! He intimidated the heck out of me every time he came around... *g* He's one of those players you couldn't help but admire, no matter what team he was playing for at any given moment.

Kim in Hawaii said...

Aloha, Wendy! Love the new format! Let me share my packing story for RT. I pulled out the pre-Hawaii jeans for Chicago's colder weather - they did not fit. It appears that I have expanded in Hawaii. So I purchased a handful of "fat" pants to make it through RT ... and now I'm making an effort to look good for RWA in Anaheim.

I also spotted several authors in the hotel gym who also want to look good for Anaheim so know that you are in good company!

Wendy said...

Nathie: I had a bump in the health road late last year, and doctor's orders were "you need to exercise regularly." Uh, which I didn't really jump on right away. The other order was to drink more water. That one I'm still working on....

Wendy said...

Kristie: For me it's no fast food, no junk food, and try to curb the chocolate intake as much as my sanity allows :) It also helps if I keep nothing remotely "fun" in the Bat Cave to snack on. Next step? I need to dial back on the sugar. That one is going to be hard.....

And GO YOU losing 14 lbs! Woot!

Wendy said...

Hils: I've been itching to redecorate for a while, but sort of feel at this stage I'm pretty well locked-in with my "branding." Minor changes, but I'm really liking them so far. Freshened things up around here :)

True story: The Tigers traded Pudge to the Yankees when RWA was in San Francisco (in 2008?). My Man called me to break the news - during the Literacy Signing! Everybody thought I was insane - except for KristieJ. Who totally understood why I was bereft to see Pudge go - to your Yankees no less! LOL

Wendy said...

Kim: It was the winter hibernating we all apparently did! I'm watching what I eat, and hitting the elliptical and/or walking six times a week. My thing is try and stay motivated. Hopefully we'll both be svelte sexy thangs at RWA! LOLOLOL!

Jazzlet said...

I know it sounds counter intuitive, but it is difficult to be self disciplined when your glucose levels are low, so the odd biscuit can help you to avoid eating the whole packet. The key thing is to take one (and put the packet away!) about twenty minutes before you are deciding on what to have for a meal.

On the water thing there has been a lot of garbage about drinking water, if your body is used to drinking tea or coffee it will not dehydrate you and you will get plenty of hydration from those sources.This is a bit icky, but it really is the easiest way to tel if you are drinking enough -

check the colour of your wee; if it is pale like lemonade you're good, if it's darker drink more

Wendy said...

Jazz: My thing is exercise. It's hard to stay motivated - especially when it means either getting up early before work, or doing my penance after putting in a full day at the office. But so far, so good. I haven't magically dropped 20 lbs in a week, but I am starting to see results (albeit minor ones!).