Gym’s, Gerry’s and the petri dish of life

Going to my gym is like experiencing a cornucopia of life. A mixture of people, sizes and persuasions along with contradictions and for me, curiosity.

kroc center

Who gets a gym that looks like it belongs in Aspen? Me and 14,000 other people, that’s who

Maybe it’s because this place is a multi-purpose center as opposed to a strictly iron and class oriented gym. This place is rock climbing and swimming, theatre and basketball courts. I’m sure there is more, but my curiosity taps out where the day care center stops. It starts back up as I approach mile three on thick rubber bottom-treadmill and the sweat is dripping in my, blurring the letters on my Kindle. My mind starts to wander and I look around. Out of my left eye, I spy an older man two treadmills down about 5’7 who has a crunched right hand. At first I only sense this, because he’s having extraordinary difficulty pushing the buttons. In front of me is a younger couple that are engaged in the type of back and forth that only occurs in the dating phase. Married couples, FYI, go separate directions, or if they stay together, move with military-style precision. They are here to get things done, not flirt.

I move on from the young couple. They are boring me and honestly, if I have to watch people flirt on the treadmill, my only recourse is to give myself more pain as a distraction.

Downstairs, over the railing, I see a late-twenties man rolling his wheelchair. He works here. Once I overhead him talking to a group of elderly patrons. He said a snowboarding accident left him in his present state. He wheels everywhere with vigor, being much more helpful to the senior citizens who occupy this place than I would normally expect a late-twenties employee to be. (Nothing against late twenties, mind you. It’s just that a person who is half the height of a granny tends to be a) non-threatening, b) interested in what life’s lessons are all about and c) funny. If you have lost the use of your legs, along the path, I believe a decision is made whether or not to become bitter. And if that’s not the choice, happiness usually is. Have you ever noticed how happy disabled people are? It’s like it was a blessing. But I digress.)

Then comes the group of big, bald and…(no, not bloaty, I know you thought I was going there), but hard. How can that be? You ask. I can answer because in my alter life, I am the quizat haderachk. These men are mostly forties to sixties, and own their bigness and baldness. As I ramp up my treadmill to 7% and then 11%, I’m in awe of how these men own it. Actually, I have to give credit to my friend from LA, Mark S., a snowboarding, surfing CEO of not one but two companies (he’s single, but has attachment issues, sorry ladies). In any case, he will look at you when you completely err (e.g. fart in a closed-windowed car) and say “Claim it, bro.”

These men, I watch them and then claim it. Claim their bigness that is so big, their tummies is one, enormous round entity that stretches the t-shirt like a balloon ready to go into the stratosphere. They strut. They laugh. They do the man-bro hug and pat each other’s back twice with a bap-bap. I must say, I applaud it. They are so full of confidence it almost makes them appealing. Almost.

Then we have another group of Gerries (what I call older women, Gerries—with a j–) is short for geriatric. Rog thinks it’s insulting but in my posse of grandmas who I hang with (thing church and service-based activities), a Gerry is really an affectionate term, one of endearment. (e.g. oh that Gerry si so cute driving her scooter, oh, that’s a hot Gerry, she’s working that lace skirt).

In any case, these place has the female equivalent of the balding, big men. They are the not-so-well preserved women who are trying really, REALLY, hard. (yes, I shouted, but more of a nice emphasis cuz I like these women). This area, in Northern Idaho, isn’t about pretense, plastic surgery or make-up. When I’m talking try hard, I’m referring to a completely different try, one that requires my complete respect and more than a little bit of awe.

To wit (invoking my high school English lit class), one woman in her late sixties, her face an unfolded piece of parchment paper that attests to her a lifetime in the northern Idaho sun, has poured her skinny self into a pair of stretchy leggings and a skin tight halter top. Rock climbing shoes without sock are the only other piece of clothing she puts on before scrambling her little superhero butt into the harness. She shimmies up the rock wall, putting the out of shape fourteen year-old male’s to shame.

That girl has claimed it. Dang. I look around wanting to claim something of my own.

As I get off the stationary walking apparatus of pain, I head directly to the weight section. There I run into a wall of Gerries who have commandeered the machines, many with their personal trainer (compliments of the center). They have their small white pieces of paper, attached to a clipboard and their minder. (I’m borrowing that from the Scientologists. I like it. It fits. I hope I don’t get sued. If the government of the US doesn’t have the funds or gumption to sue the Scientologists, I’m pretty sure I don’t). In any case, the minder keeps tabs on very push and press, pull and dip. Nary a sweat drop in sight, but I tell you what I do see. A lot of looking around. Gazing—at the opposite sex!

I ponder this as I continue into the free weight section where I’m in the company of only one other woman (who is definitely not a Gerry) and a whole lot of maleness under thirty. I’m okay with this, but as I mention to my husband later than evening, I’m confused as to what to do and how to be. My natural, nice, talkative self creates the impression that I want to talk, instead of working out, and that my talking is a forward to getting into bed. So after realizing I was creating a legion of potential stalkers who would follow me around from bench to pole, I tried the other approach. I stared straight ahead, barely making eye contact, and only doing so when I needed to verify bench or item was available. I’m terribly conflicted about this, because I think avoiding someone’s gaze is rude and I run this risk of thinking I’m all that (which, if you saw me at the gym, would know I’m very little of all that).

I’m reminded of what Rog told me earlier in the week. “Who cares if they look or talk to you? Why are you even thinking about this? Enjoy a younger man talking to you. It’s not going to last forever.”

What the…? Laughing while foreseeing my old-age Gerry-ness coming into play, I continue working out, trying to find a balance between being focused and polite but distant and not-b—chy. The good news is I have better things to focus on, like the man who has been burned on half of his body, and the woman plastered with so many tattoos I can barely see the skin. She doesn’t look very happy but has an amazing body. This then makes me wonder if I have to be grumpy and focused to have a great body.

Closing the locker on my things, I wipe some sweat off and head out. The meanderings of my time at the gym. I came. I exercised. I pondered. I realized I don’t know half of what I need to be wise, but if the Gerry’s around me are any example, I’m going to have a lot of time to figure it out.

The new four letter words

It’s a Monday. That means lots of calls w/vendors, clients, friends, relatives. Some good, some tiresome. Some loud. Others obnoxious. The last part only became so when the person I was talking to kept repeating the same words, overandoverandover, to the point I wondered if the individual actually had more than five words in (his/her) vocabulary (we must keep this anonymous)…

Seriously. Really. Right? and the mother of all phrases, are you kidding me?

At one time, these words were used in the context of happy and light, excitement and genuine need-to-know-interest. I’m finding that more often than not, each one is said sarcastically, rhetorically, many times when nothing should be said at all. The worst offense is right.

Right?

Know those people who say something, and immediately follow-it up with “right?” It’s the amateur’s way of eeking out an agreement from the listener, except the speaker using the word keeps talking right on through/over/under, the potential responder. Even well-spoken, multi-degreed CEO’s fall into the trap of using this one word to gain a confirmation that what has been said is in fact, accurate. Sadly, there is rarely the pause following this word that actually would give the desired affirmation.

Remember the good old days, when it was only the F-word that had the kind of flexibility embodied by these impersonators? It was intentionally used in place of a coma, a space, of course, an exclamation point.

This whole-bad-Engligh, bad/irritating grammar has got to stop. The next time someone says “Really?” and they aren’t being genuine, you could say, ‘Seriously‘ right back. They’ll respond by saying ‘Are you kidding me?’ and you can end this enlightening conversation with a ‘Right‘!

A hint…

Other options with 6 words or less meant to gain an affirmation include:

  1. Are we on the right track?
  2. Are we aligned on this?
  3. Does that make sense?
  4. Sound good?
  5. How does that sound?
  6. Fair enough?

If you actually want to move the conversation forward, go the extra mile and provide a statement.

“Now that we are on the same page, let’s discuss the details…” It elevates the level of discussion, it’s focused and strong. The way a leader should be.

Perfect eyebrow secret

When it comes to eyebrows, ask yourself, do you want to have eyebrows like Eva Mendez without paying someone a few hundred bucks every few months? Do you want to get rid of the thin-looking patches in the brow that resemble an oceanic deadzone? If so, then you need the Ssecret I learned from my professional make-up artists friends, who use this on movie sets and for commercials.
JUST FOR MEN mustache and beard dye. At sub- $8.00 and 5 minutes, the results make me cry from joy, and weep for the hundreds of dollars I’ve spent for 20 years getting my fine, blond eyelashes and eyebrows dyed. (let’s see, $15-30 every 6 wks for 20 yrs??) stop…i’m crying again.
I was reminded of this yesterday, when I woke up with no eyebrows! Well, there were present, just barely visible. So I descended into my husbands man-cave bathroom, got out his Just for Men beard and mustache dye, and wallah, 4 minutes later, perfect eyebrows.
Here’s why it works (from the Just for Men site)
Why should I use Just For Men instead of women’s hair color?
Women’s products change the color of every hair on your head – whether it is gray or not – providing a less natural look. They also come in a variety of fashion colors, which are not appropriate for men who don’t want obvious color changes. Further, Just For Men only takes about 5 minutes to apply versus 30 to 45 minutes. And finally, it’s safer and non-damaging since it’s 100% ammonia-free, unlike most women’s color brands. Bottom line: Just For Men was developed by men for men to match men’s specific needs.

Proof that not only do women look less natural, but we pay MORE!!

5-steps to perfect eyebrows

  1. Once you have your color (soft brown is my fav), mix abt a pinky fingernail size dollops of both the color and the neutralizer together.
  2. Using either an eyebrow brush, or the little brush inside, apply on the eyebrow.
  3. If you want thicker brows (which generally make people look younger) brush onto the fine hairs.
  4. Leave on for 3-4 minutes. Less than 3 doesn’t make a visible difference, and more than 5 is super dark.
  5. Remove first with tissue, starting from the inside of the eye outward. Then wash off with water. Don’t scrub the heck out of it either. You want some color to stay on!
If you have some errant hairs, DON’T PLUCK!!! Over time, this kills the ability for the hair folicle to produce more hair. Instead, take a cuticle scissors (the small, fine scissors) and cut at the base of the hair folicle. Then you retain the ability to have hair, which is an important consideration as we age (and no eyebrow deadzones).

Ancestor’s in the vault

Ouray

Ouray, Colorado- 5 hrs drive from Denver, 30 min from Montrose airport

Three years ago, I’m in Ouray, Colorado, a place fondly known as the “little Switzerland of America,” due to it being in the center of high mountains, itself a teeny, 500 person town (give or take in the summer). The hills are riddled with closed down mine shafts, once upon a time producing streams of gold that eventually ran dry. On the other side of the hill adjacent to Rog’s parent’s (my in-laws) home sits Telluride, thirty minutes by car (right past Ralph Lauren’s 3,000 acre farm), but 12 min my truck if one takes the internal mountain road available to the miners.

An idea for a book struck me: what if all the records of the citizens of the United States were plunked right in the mountain caverns, and through some dastardly deeds of the government (who else), that information was used to hurt the population (I’ve already written the book so don’t go stealing my plot).vault pics

Well, imagine my surprise when two days ago, I learn that a cavernous warehouse of sorts actually does exist, but the location is in Utah, and the creators of the repository isn’t the government, but the Mormon church. Furthermore, the data doesn’t include just citizens of the US, but of over 150 countries–and alas, no misdeeds or ill intent. It’s all available and free, provided on-line through Familysearch.org.

You see, anyone who does research on family members, ancestors or also in my case, people I want to know more about for my books, ends up in ancestry.com which now has partnered with familysearch.org. When I came across this video on Youtube talking about Granite Mountain Vault, I was impressed, slightly awed and sort-of pissy that my idea was, oh, 30+ years out of date/taken.

Now, if you are wondering what this means to you- other than peace of mind, you can actually go, for free, to any one of the 4,000 family history centers built by the LDS (Mormon) church around the world. Some are stand-alone buildings, others are within a church building. The volunteers are all LDS geneology-trained-range in ages and are not allowed to preach to you about the faith. If you ask, you will be referred to a missionary, so you can go in, ask your questions and get started.

Granite Mt. Vault

Granite Mt Vault

The good news here (and I’m always in search of good news) is that if the world falls apart, trillions of records will be saved on microfiche, and I’ll always be able to find my ancestor’s records in a vault.

 

Thanksgiving mishaps creating thanks

IMG_6443

No fingertips in the pie

The day before Thanksgiving was a busy one–three pies, the stuffing, four types of dishes…there I am, talking along with my father-in-law, slicing an onion when the bottom slips out from and bam, off goes the tip of my left pinky.

I never realized how important the tip of my left pinky is. Tying my shoe (it always presses against my foot), typing (I can barely type at all now) washing my hair…in fact, I now have an appreciation for the littlest piece of skin on my entire body that, quite frankly, I’ve always taken for granted.

You can imagine how this is yet one more metaphor for life, and I am tempted to dive down a philosophical rabbit hole that would make Alice in Wonderland proud, but I don’t have that kind of typing capability (for I am using my fourth finger as a substitute and it’s painfully slow & error-filled). Suffice it to say that I’ve given more thanks for the littlest of things during the last 72 hours that have always escaped me. Furthermore, this unfortunate mishap has further instilled in me a desire to cut everything out that’s non essential–thankfully, bathing made the list, but I’m telling you it was easier to get in and out of the tub while I had my foot and leg all broken up than to keep my bandaged up hand dry while doing my hair and toweling off. Pinkies are essential digits.

As an aside, I cut this same pinky two months ago, also while cutting an onion, but that time, I had glanced up and out the window to admire the lake beyond. A noble act, I think. My family called it stupidity, but whatever. That one went to the bone, but being the pioneer woman I’m quickly becoming, I cleaned it out, Rog lined it with superglue and I put on a bandage. The end. This time around, no such luck- its bloody, oozy and requiring jedi-like skills to clean the end before I put on more salve and bandages.

But the good news is the stuffing turned out perfectly–which was helpful, since it was the reason for the onions in the first place. The bad news was that my father-in-law asked me where the tip of the finger went (for it was on the cutting board–somewhere). I blinked, blinked again, and had to admit I had no idea. It either remained on the knife (which had been removed from my hand and cleaned), into the trash along with that batch of onions, or…gulp, made it into the stuffing.

“Oh well,” said my father-in-law in response to the thought a bit of my flesh was a part of the meal. “Tasted great to me.”

And for that, I was thankful.

Enlightenment & fasting

S teve Jobs has been on my mind; not for his fame, fortune or black mock turtlenecks, but for his use of fasting for the goal of enlightenment.

Let’s think about this for a minute. Fasting has been used for thousands of years for a whole multitude of reasons. Inspiration (think the original Buddha), mental and physical strength (athletes) enlightenment (yogi’s, Jesus) rendering the mind & heart humble and pure (Saint Augustine)  cleansing of the body and soul (millions of unnamed people). The length inspirational quoteand means are as varied as the people and the times. Jobs tended to use the fasting that skipped everything but juices (not to be confused with a cleanse, which is about losing weight but not enlightenment). A fast is generally considered eliminating all food and living on water, although I know people modify this to address dietary and health requirements and/or restrictions.

Whatever the form and function, a “fast” has a purpose, and end-goal if you will, that is ever-present and top-of-mind throughout. Then, when the goal is achieved—vis a vis the sought after enlightenment has occurred, then the fast ends.

Let’s go back to Jobs. Carrot juice being his fasting method of choice, if he had a problem to solve, he’d go on a juice fast until he received the answer (or enlightenment) he sought. (As a side-note, I’ve read and experienced that those who don’t believe in a God tend to use the word enlightenment versus received an answer- which denotes an answer from ‘someone.’ Perhaps this is why fasting itself is so universal—because a universal response is being given at the individual level, and thereby the promise of the fast is achieved).

I love the yoga teachers that throughout my twenty-year study have often gone full-on fasting—not even water—which of course means it has very physical limitations. So too have the martial arts instructors I’ve worked with over the years. The parallel experiences and stories have mirrored those who have removed certain foods from their diets-the difference, I might emphasize, was speed and clarity.

The voice of clarity

Now, I made this promise not to get too personal with this blog, but I have no issue telling the world what I have personally fasted about, because it’s pretty much anything important. For inspiration before a business meeting, college exam, plot ideas, who to date and/or marry, whether or not I should move, accept a client or job, to have or not have a baby. Those are personal. I’ve fasted for others, parents, siblings, even strangers, like those suffering from miscarriages of justice, the survivors or victims of attacks or accidents.

Why, you might ask. It’s because as a person who believes in the power of fasting for others and self, I also believe in the power of positive energy. At the subatomic level, our bodies are composed of energy (as identified in 1951). We can send out this to others regardless of distance. At the simple level, our heart pushes out an energy field 12 feet from our bodies.

It goes like this

  1. Start with the intention. Every self-help guru, yoga instructor, pastor, sales executive and even Oprah, will tell you it starts with the verbalization and visualization of the intent or goal. What is it? What do you desire? What do you need? This is what you are putting out there to the universe if you will, and if you believe in Deity, it’s that entity. Visualize and verbalize. State it and be clear.
  2. Prepare to fast and make the commitment to a timeframe. This is the optimal way to do it…as in, three meals, a dinner, overnight and then breakfast and lunch the following day. Twenty-four hours is a good starting point and there is a methodology. As said by one of my martial arts instructors (an 8th degree who was as agile as a mountain lion but as peaceful as a cool breeze), the goal is to bring the body to submission of the mind, and the mind itself to a place where it stops making noise. Depriving the body of food physically weakens it. Only when this occurs does the mind become quiet. Once the mind is quiet, then inspiration can occur.Now, that said, sometimes it takes some of us (ahem) more time to physically and mentally settle down than others. Honestly, I’ve witnessed that vegans who refrain from caffeine are simply a lot more chill than the average adrenaline junkie (self include). So, when I say that one sometimes needs to prepare for a fast, I’m being serious. If I’ve had a lot of chocolate lately (which has caffeine) I have to ease off so I won’t go through withdrawals. Then I have to clean out my body (by further eliminating bad stuff like sugar) and then I’m ready to be clean physically.For those that live a cleaner diet than I do, fasting is probably easier and produces quicker or stronger efforts.
  3. Constantly reiterate and repeat the intention throughout the fast. Think about it. Consider it. Roll it over and over in your mind. The more you think about the problem you are wanting to solve or outcome you desire, the greater the expansion of your thoughts. This is where the ideas suddenly come from—or the enlightenment. Many have referred to this as a sudden burst of light. For writers, many times this comes in dreams. Others have the ‘a-ha’ moment that seemingly comes from nowhere.

 

Does it last forever?

What if you fast for a day, even two, are weak and weary, and have received nothing. Nada. No answer. No inspiration. You are frustrated and think the whole notion is bunk.

Actually, a phrase exists for this condition, and it’s called a stupor of thought. That, in fact, is the answer. The answer “no” comes in many forms, and this “blackness” as it’s sometimes called, is the clearest form of answer possible. Should I go out with this person—stupor of thought—is a no. If it were a yes, then it would be a warm, peaceful feeling.

A yoga instructor told me about sending her child to a school that had been recommended, but she wasn’t feeling good about it. She fasted for a day or so and spent concentrated time in meditation (for additional clarity). While she didn’t receive an answer of what school to go to (she hadn’t asked that), she received a strong feeling—described as a sickness in her stomach—every time she thought about sending her child to that school. The longer she fasted and meditated, and thought about this option, the more acute her feelings became. Once she visualized not sending her child to this school, she felt peace she described as a complete calm. That was a validation of her prior answer.

As with anything—exercise or a new job, fasting becomes easier with practice, to the point of becoming second nature. Many people I know fast on a regular basis, either once a month, once a week (usually on a particular day where they can plan a day free from a business meeting luncheon or skipping a workout).

I’d like to end this with a flippant line, such as–the worst case is you have freed your body of toxins, but the reality is that flippancy reduces the power of the fast and the answers that come along with it. We have been put here to learn and grow, and that requires us to push, achieve and fully live to our potential. Fasting is one tool for us to reach the heights awaiting us. All we have to do is take the initiative and jump.

Fall fundraising ideas- it’s not too late for 2015

salt city candle company

Salt city candle company- I love candles, but I’m really particular- but I know women who have literally spent hundreds of dollars on candles in a single event

Last weekend I attended a social function that, as social functions occurring just before Thanksgiving almost always do, end with a call for donations.

This was a worthy cause-a non-profit school with a broad curriculum and outstanding programs but had budgeted for a number of students that didn’t show up. These things happen-more so when the economy is on the verge of hitting the skids. Upon learning that the deficit was in the tens of thousands of dollars (and not wanting to tap into long term savings ear-marked for infrastructure) I went into board member/fundraising mode.

As I sat, happily munching away on Swedish meatballs and lemon squares (not in the order I might note), I tapped into the recesses of my former life, the one wherein I was invariably on some committee to raise money.

The easiest low/no cost means to raise a few thousand dollars is to host events where a product provider brings in a “line” of items and the upside (after cost) is donated to the school. The provider extends his/her potential customer base and uses it as a tax write-off (if your entity is a non-profit). At my children’s previous school, we had three per year and each event brought between $500-$2000 to the school, the highest usually being either jewelry or clothing. It’s most helpful to have things aligned with the season.

  • December: jewelry. It’s not too late to start (it being 11/9). A holiday jewelry showing in early December might be feasible.
  • February: valentines/clothing for spring- Like the Cabi line tends to do very well (it also fits the party/hostess model)
  • April: really anything wellness oriented- diet/weight loss/essential oils

Ground rules: talk around-network-learn which individuals (usually women) are ‘at-home-sales people.’ This can be everything from make-up to tupperware, candles to lingerie. In the vein of being the most inclusive/least offensive, go with what will work in your area.

What to ask for: “will you have an evening just for our organization? You will be introduced to my/the entirely new network of potential customers and be able to write off the evening as a business expense (e.g. donating proceeds to the entity). In other words, the costs of the product will be covered as profits are donated to the entity.

What you need:

  • a venue. Find a gracious hostess or host yourself.
  • marketing. Distribute through as many means as possible (evite, email, facebook etc).
  • food. Offer modest food- apps or desserts, beverages.

Post event, follow up with a word of thanks to the attendees for supporting the cause, and my personal favorite is always knowing how much was raised.

Rapid Hair Loss

It started when our daughter Porsche was six. Her golden locks started falling out in quarter size clumps, what the doctors called alopecia, or hair loss. “Normal,” we were told, for girls starting around six years old. When the quarters turned to dollar-size swaths by the time she was seven, the doctors said it was “severe,” but still “normal.” Let me tell you this: nothing is normal about four inch strips of hair falling out. As Porsche reached her eighth birthday she was mostly bald, and with only some strands of hair left. Just before Christmas, we had the task of taking her to a wig store specializing in children, mostly those suffering from rare forms of cancer.

Porsche at 3

Porsche at 3

To shorten the reading time, suffice it to say that the dermatologists all said hair loss. The actual “hair doctors”- or those that typically do graphs, transplants and the like, said this was not normal. In fact, we became indebt to Dr. Robert Nebalski, one of the most successful hair specialists in the Northwest, for his work in tracking down and identifying the underlying cause of the loss was first connected to girls between 7-13. For years he’d been studying this in concert with another doctor in Italy. At the same time, a friend from church happened to stop by and mentioned that her neighbor’s daughter suffered from a similar condition and it had been linked to her well.

The well. This wasn’t the problem, for wells have been around for a millennium. It was the toxins–and specifically–the metals in the water. Those metals- and think of everything that’s in the ground. When I mentioned this to Dr. Nebalski, we had her metals checked and found her levels were off the charts. So high in fact, that she should have suffered brain damage. (At the time we were on a different well system).

Now, if you, or your daughter (or son, or wife) have had rapid hair loss that can’t be explained, look to the water. That’s the first take-away. Second, forget what the department of health says is actually ‘healthy.’ That’s general. Every person has a different chemical make-up, and some are more sensitive (e.g. susceptible) to metals than others.Progression over 3 years

The second take-away is that testing the water itself (for metals) is very expensive- as in, $35 per item, and for our full testing it was sub $400. It was a good thing to do, but as were preparing to drill our own well it was sort of after the fact.

I’m jumping ahead here and doing so on purpose, because if you are reading this page, you are probably desperately seeking a solution just like we were. What we learned was this:

  1. you can decrease the metals in your body (which actually reside mostly in your head, thus causing hair thinning and loss)
  2. the solution is Zeolite capsules by Omica. This brand in particular-no other. its basically ash that attracts and absorbs the metals. the body excretes it through bowel movements (pooping). Note: you must drink a lot of water
  3. keep the follicles open through topical steroids (and injections as necessary…more on the next topic

The last element of this is that we’d already been planning on drilling our own well, which we had started, and it was completed in several months. We immediately switched over (me as the guinea pig) and lo, my hair started to come in even thicker than it already is (and those who know me can attest to the thickness of my hair). I was on our own well for a solid month before Porsche started using it, and it’s now been two years+ of normalcy.

Chocolate addicts, UTIs and a fix

Not a sexy topic to be sure, but lets face it. When one consumes massive amounts of sugar, but it by mainlining (alcohol) or the slower but no less effective chewing kind (candy or the less adulterated kind, like processed bread that eventually turns into sugar), one needs a fast, effective solution for the sugar-induced UTI (urinary tract infection) that is the consequence of short-term joy.

I have found that I can cope with nearly anything my UT (urinary tract) throws at me to stop my evil ways. I first went to sugar rehab while in college, when I was in the dorm room shower and saw blood coming from (down there). I was nearly in tears I was in so much pain, the ejection of pure acid out my peep-hole enough to make me beg for three more calculus classes. Worse, my mother comes out to take me to the doctor, and he asks if I got it by having sex. (I was an undefiled virgin if you must know), which he soon attested to in front of my mother (whew!).

He then probed the causes. I wasn’t overweight (under actually) and had kept off the “freshman 15” by drinking 3 64 oz diet cokes a day. Hmm. Yes. I bought into the zero calorie marketing hype. LIttle did I know that the man-made acids were not conducive to a function UT. BTW, if you are thinking that women alone are afflicted by this–no. Men have all the joys of UTIs along with the she-counterparts.

“No more sodas,” intoned the doctor. He didn’t need to tell me. I’d so destroyed my insides that 10 years later I learned the lining of my walls had been permanently damaged. And by permanently, what that means is that if I have 3 gulps of soda–any kind–I will get a UTI (more commonly identified as a bladder infection) within 15 minutes. UGH.

To keep this short and to get you to a solution, keep two things in mind: reactive and preventative. The former is: I’m in pain, or I’ve just had a few too many choc bars, desserts or whatever and by the time I get home I’m going to be screaming. For these instances, you need to keep several tabs of Probiotics in your wallet, purse or pocket. These little gems are the equivalent of a urinary tract napalm explosion. (I’ve found this brand in particular works best). I’m talking scorched earth in 15 minutes. Unless you have gone to CA (Chocoholics Anonymous) you must use these white magic pills as your sponsor.

Now, if you are a thinking person (which all my readers are) you are going to take the smart, proactive, never get caught with my privates-on-fire situation, right? Right. Those people will do the following:

every day, once a day, take 2 cranberry gelcaps, (for UT health) 3 alka greens (for PH balance and alkalinity, which do a whole lot more for you than can possibly be explained in this blog) and finally, you will take an alkidophilus. I did this all best preventative solutionthrough Europe this last summer and not once in weeks did I have issue. And trust me, I should have been wailing through 15 different countries I was easting so much sugar and chocolate.

Now, the above two situations are normal–but sometimes, I’m in critical, life or death pain–and by this I mean I wake up in the middle of the night. Here’s what I do. I load up on all of the above and power all four items down with as much water as I can possibly keep inside me. Sometimes I have to take a hot bath- but that’s probably more for mental help that I’m so stupid as to get myself in a college-age predicament yet again.

Tip: buy the cranberry, probiotic at Costco– great brands and inexpensive. the others I get on line through amazon.

Deleting comments on WordPress

This is for all the people like me who don’t blog for a living (as in, we don’t make money off it). I have yet to receive a comment indicating that a person has purchased a book or made a decision to hire me for a board position (or other) based upon a blog. As such, I rarely expect comments on my blogs…and in return, I rarely get them.

Good comments that is. What I DO get are thousands…and i’m talking thousands of “comments” an hour, but aren’t comments at all. They are robo-generated fishing, marketing or sales bots, comprised mostly of bad English, lots of key words and a few crude and/or otherwise unsuitable word choices.

This has been a growing wart that I’ve been able to ignore for months now, right up until this last week, when my former web site service company informed me that a photographer out of Las Vegas has been requesting I delete my backward links from my site to his. Huh?

Research was not what I wanted to do. I wanted to get in the tub and hand this over to my husband, the techie in the family.

“They are threatening to sue,” I said. Slight exaggeration. Clearly, someone in the marketing group at this photo studio got irritated (which I might say, must be very successful to have someone complaining about a backward link which ostensibly drives business). I then turn and leave and take my bath.

A half hour later, I get a tap on the door. Rog peers in. “It’s done.”

I was mystified, as I am with all things WordPress. I had looked for hours (ok, twenty minutes) to identify how to block and/or delete bulk comments. I have a short attention span. Apple has trained me well. If I can’t do it in 3 steps, I can’t be bothered. (It’s like what happens in the bedroom. Clothes off. In bed….you get the picture. 3 steps or i’m out).

In any case, I ask him what he did that I didn’t do. “I installed a plug-in.”

Ah. It goes under tools. it’s actually called “Easy removal of comments.” Then end.

Now I have 3 steps to removing all comments (once said plug-in was installed)

  1. go to Tools
  2. Click Remove
  3. Select all comments (and those pending)
  4. Click yes (ok. I was wrong. 4 steps).

Sadly, this means actual real, meaningful comments are also getting napalmed, and for that I’m sorry. If I had more time (or rather, more time from my IT support staff) I’d find a plug-in that allowed for a high-filter or qualified commentary (one that requires an actual account or something). Alas. I’m not there yet. I’ll get that when I actually do this for a living.

Tools graphic

Step 1: Select the Delete All Comments

Click both boxes- pending and posted

Step 2: (above) select posted and pending comments as a bulk action

final picture

The final result. It’s all gone! yeah to the spammers, tears to the legitimate commentators. I guess that’s what Instagram is for- immediate, unfiltered, actual responses (except for those randomly generated bots that is!).

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