Thursday, December 15, 2005

Weightroom Posers

This one has been long in the making, but I just keep forgetting to write it all down. I've been working out in the gym now for about a month or so. Just long enough to get to know the regulars. There are probably two or three of these regulars who I now refer to as weightroom posers.

It's no secret that I'm not the biggest and most powerful guy in the weightroom. I go and workout but I'm not breaking any records with what I lift. That's simply not my purpose for being there. Then why are there guys who want to compare themselves to me? You know the guy. He sees you and identifies with you, and therefore makes it a personal competition between you and him as to who can lift more.

There is one guy in particular that I am thinking about. I love to do curls. I know the bicep is pretty much the most useless muscle to a cyclist but I still love to do curls. So the other day I'm doing my reps and the poser comes up and decides to do curls. This already annoys me. I know that other people do the same exercises that I do, but do you have to do it at the same time as I am and standing next to me?

The part that really gets me, is where, after studying mine, he grabs the weights just a few pounds heavier. You could tell it was killing him. He was struggling and struggling and all the while being an even bigger poser than he originally was.

He's continued this posering for the last week or so now. He knows all my weights and exercises. I want to grab him and shake him while saying you're a poser buddy!!! Leave me alone and stop copying me. You're a scrawny white boy. There is no point in competing against another. What are you trying to prove? You're the king of the scrawny ones. That's like being the emperor of ice cream. Give it up, cut your weight and quit trying to prove yourself to the rest of the world.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Good Writing

It's rare that something impressive me as much as the following:

"The facts shown by plaintiff, if true, cause many emotional reactions: Horror at the brutality; sympathy for the child; shame that man, occupying a high pinnacle, may be dropped so low by evil desires; sorrow that the life of a young man was so suddenly and uselessly ended. But we do not judge men; that is for the Highest Court. We pass upon facts as measured by the law, and must at all times retain our equilibrium, to see that the shields erected after centuries of experience to prevent miscarriages of justice are maintained.To the layman, our action here will probably be called a ‘reversal on a technicality’ and he will wonder why this rule should be applied in a case such as this. The man trained in the law will know that we are protecting and preserving for everyone-good, bad, or indifferent-one of the standard safeguards provided for the assurance of a fair trial in all cases. If it should be ignored here, it is destroyed and will not exist at the time of the next trial, regardless of who is the defendant. The same is true of many other so-called ‘technicalities.’ When the courts destroy them, if they do, the days of fair trials as we know them are gone."

-----Justice Jones

Slight Rant and then some Substance

If you are going to have a Top Ten of something please limit it to ten. Now that the weather has turned cold I'm stuck on the trainer on Mondays and Fridays. I spend the first half of my 90 minutes reading but then I turn on the t.v. and watch the news. However, commercials annoy me so I flip channels and occasionally land up on ESPN. It's Monday so that means that some fat-used-to-be-good sports broadcaster has his top ten countdown for the previous week. Top ten to this fat man means something close to 30 or 40 plays. It is so long and so overly involved that they go to commercial at number 5 and then do the remaining when they come back. Is this just a pathetic attempt to fill space and provide camera time for a washed up sportscaster or what? ESPN, please give it up. Top ten means ten and not every single thing that ever happened.

I watched a death penalty oral argument today. These are always intense because it doesn't take much for you to remember that someone's life is hanging in the balance. Today I sat in the back row as is my usual thing. However, this time I was seated near to the family of the deceased victim. The victim here was only 6 months old and therefore made the case even more emotional and tense. Seated an arms length in front of me was the victim's mother, grandmother and the rest of the family. Emotions were heightened and tears were definitely shed. At the same time it was clear that the defendant's family was seated on the other side of the room. Equally pitched to see the argument and clearly aware of the desperate situation that their family member was now in.

I tried to watch the reaction in the audience. It was clear that the mother of the victim was tortured, absolutely tortured by the entire experience. I can not even imagine what she must have been going through, however, I was amazed by how she kept her composure, all the time clutching her child's favorite play toy. It is an amazing moment of time to watch the justice system work. Despite the situation and the desperation of the moment everyone remanded calm and civil. The lawyers stood and argued and no one made a spectacle.

I see now the importance the lawyer plays even more clearly than before. Watching the families hang on every word said knowing full well that their's was a role of silence. They were powerless in that courtroom and completely dependant on their advocate. How incredible a sight it was and how very impressive the entire system is to me. Despite my limited years of life and even more limited years of practice I will be someone's voice. I will speak while they remain silent. The greyhaired members of the world will quietly listen to me and place their last moment of trust in me...and I must do them right.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Weekend Riding

I had a great weekend of riding. It was probably the first real good weekend worth of riding that I have had since I started training again. I think that I'm getting dangerously close to "on target" for next season. I threw down four hours on Saturday and three hours on Sunday. Varying roads but again all solo work with some weather to deal with as well.

These thoughts, among others were in my head. Counties in Mississippi that I have ridden in:
1. Lafayette
2. Pontotoc
3. Panola
4. Calhoun
5. Tallahatchie
6. Lee
7. Yalobusha
8. Lincoln
9. Warren
10. Hinds
11. Rankin
12. Madison
13. Copiah
14. Simpson

States, plus other, in the Country that I have ridden in:
1. Illinois
2. Wisconsin
3. Iowa
4. Minnesota
5. Kansas
6. Missouri
7. Vermont
8. Tennessee
9. Alabama
10. Mississippi
11. Louisiana
12. Texas
13. Nebraska
14. Virginia
15. D.C.
16. Maryland

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Wrath Upon Lenders

I wish only ill will upon my lenders because it is clear that they have no clue as to what is going on and wish only to rip my still beating heart out of my chest. Apparently when you tell a lender to consolidate your loan that gives them license to drag their feet in accomplishing this task. This of course means they get the option of charging you a higher and higher interest rate to do so. All of these facts are of course concealed from the unwitting borrower until it is much too late for them to do anything about it.

I thank the wonderful folks at CitiBank for making life so easy on me. They made it so easy to borrow the money, but now it is almost impossible to pay them back. On top of that I've been told 3 different stories about my loan and repayment options. I think that the best move now would be to declare bankruptcy and get rid of it all, but alas student loans would not be wiped clean if I did that. So the complication only continues.

It is now my mission in life to pay off my loans in as quick and tireless a manner as possible. For no reason other than the fact that I am so confused by them that I just don't want to deal with them at all.