Monday, February 16, 2009

Lists Within Lists

So much to report on since my last writing:

A. Lerla (of riceandbeansandcollardgreens) is living in Chile for six months beginning a week or so ago. I'm so excited and jealous. In her honor, let us discuss a peculiar construction in the Spanish language, one I like to call:

¡¡¡Unnecessary Combat!!! (BAM! POW!)

Unnecessary Combat makes perfect sense to me. In my family, people are always trying to tell others how to do everything and how to experience everything. The result is an underlying aroma of defensiveness in interpersonal interactions, lol. One reaction to the defensiveness would be to back off, but that would be too Scandinavian. Latinos? We just up the ante. I bring this up because Unnecessary Combat goes something like this:

1. The Setup: there is no setup. The point of UC is that it generally comes out of the blue. The casual observer would assume that a conflict is already in motion, judging by the tone of the utterance, but the casual observer would be wrong.

2. The Exclamation: ¡get your upside down exlamation marks ready (option-1 on Macs)- UC is muy sabroso!

3. The Contradiction: now is when you contradict whatever was said in #1, namely, nothing. It goes something like this: 
  "¡Ay, pero...!"

In English- "Oh, but....!"

4. The Roundoff: get to your point. This coffee is soooooo rich. The pernil is suuuuuper flavorful. You sing veeeeeeerrrrry well. You look gooooood in your new dress. Etc. It is perfectly acceptable, and in fact expected, that you will utter the entire UC in an incredulous and grunty voice. Otherwise- how will anyone believe you? (Bioletta is legendary at this voice. I hope she reads this entry. In fact, Maven should send her a link. If I were to send it to her myself, it would just be tacky, lolz.)

5. Victory: you've left no choice but for everyone to agree with you.

That's all there is to Unnecessary Combat. In real time, it goes like this:

Lerla and Dom sit at her kitchen table and take their first sip of amazing Hawaiian coffee.

Simultaneously: "¡¡¡Ay, pero que rico!!!"

The best part of this example is that it really happened, and the UC was rendered even more unnecessary because we were both experiencing the coffee together. It's not like I needed to talk Lerla into trying the coffee. In fact, since it was her coffee, she already knew how rich it was- why should I try to convince her? I guess this example should be called Super-Unnecessary Combat. SUC.

Bioletta also knows about UC, because of her Spanish heritage, and I bet Madness could go to battle too. While I've yet to meet the Californian homegirl, for sure Bioletta and Lerla and I have derived hours of entertainment from UC-ing and SUC-ing each other. (BCSM- don't be dirty!)

B. In my quest to be happier, I've finally joined a gym. Actually I've flirted with working out consistently several times before, but never found the right approach to making it stick. Typically, I was motivated by achieving physical gains quickly, but this time, priority #1 is to elevate myself from the emotional funk/fallout that has been part of my life lately. 

In short, a few weeks ago, I thought it was time for me to really sit down and excavate some of the feelings surrounding the life-changing events of the last 18 months. During treatment, exploring these emotional nooks and crannies didn't seem prudent. I was very much focused on having cancer be a short detour as opposed to a complete new mode of transportation, so I didn't feel there was too much about which to get worked up (lolz). Experiencing the emotions surrounding loss well after the fact is kind of my M.O. anyway, and this situation proved no different. Honestly, I'm grateful for that, because in this case, I think the crisis warranted as cool a head as possible.

Anyway, when I decided it was time to excavate, I kind of wasn't prepared for how much it would hurt. Fine- let me go see a therapist. Did it, and derived no pleasure from it. In fact, I left her office feeling worse than when I arrived, which I'm sure is common. God bless her, but homegirl didn't seem terribly experienced- she was a tender young thing. I guess the hospital figured that the big guns were better saved for cases of schizophrenia and the like. Fair enough. Our session was one painful hour of her going through the little therapy manual in her head. Listen. Mirror patient's concerns. Express some sympathy while maintaining objectivity. Awkward silence. Of course, I already knew going into therapy that therapists are not there to provide answers as much as they are there to provide an outlet/avenue. Still, I'm not seeing her anymore.

So I'm thinking that I'll just use the gym and my friends for therapy for now. Seems to be working, too. As for the gym thing, I'm actually feeling good about this go-round, as opposed to my previous encounters, and the reason is very simple: I'm eating before and after workouts. Yes, I'm so sincerrrre.

A couple of years ago, my brother The Hulk and SIL lost a bunch of weight doing Body-for-Life, and were nice enough to send my a copy of the book when I expressed interest. Cool. Except that it was too much, too soon, and in some cases, just plain wrong for me. The diet portion was boot camp-ish and unpleasant (too much protein, not enough cheese, lots of no-nos, nothing truly delicious, etc.) and what killed me most was that the author recommended working out first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. No wonder I was walking around like a zombie for the few weeks I stayed on that program. I'd leave the gym feeling like I had just spent the previous two weeks on a non-stop weed binge- tired and spaced out just as I was ready to start what were thirteen and fourteen-hour days at that point. Silly me- I kind of thought maybe this was the rush of endorphins I kept hearing about. No- this was low-blood sugar with a hint of anemia, lol.

So now that I'm over losing a bunch of weight in a short time, the whole gym thing is way better. Cardio still does me in a little bit, but not like before. Lifting weights is a whole new world when I'm properly fed. Finally, I know what endorphins feel like! Most importantly, I'm not going to even attempt an overhaul of my diet concurrently with the new workout regimen. One thing at a time, as far as I'm concerned.

C. Saturday (Valentyme's Day) was my one-year birthday. At least, it's my blood and immune system's birthday. Spent the morning with my big sister in tha 'Lo, and then made it back to Rochacha in time for a disco nap. "Disco nap?" you may ask? Yes. I had plans to go out with a guy and a few of his friends, all of whom I met at the Cluuuuhhhhhb a couple of weeks ago. We'll call the guy Blow Out. (Don't be dirty, Bill. Lerla, take a guess at why this is funny, and you'll be correct.) The reason for the nickname is that on the first night we spent any significant amount of time chatting, his hair had been did. Blowed Out. Interesting choice, for sure, but his saving grace is that he has a really good sense of humor about it, on top of a great personality, plus he look gooder than a mug. (Chay-Funk, remind me to tell you about what you'd surely find to be his most attractive quality.) A good time was had again, on Valentyme's.

Can I just marvel, once more, at how poppin the Cluuuuuuhhhhhhb was here? In Rochahca? I spent a good portion of the night trying to convince a possible tranny to do some dips on the dancefloor, but I guess that club wasn't that poppin : (

D. I feel like I'm zeroing in on what an appropriate career might be for me, aside from the music thing, and thank Jeebus, because it calms my anxiety. I'm thinking that I'd like to get involved either with grant writing, or grant making for non-profits. I know- I have more mental whittling to do on the topic, but I'm feeling good about this. I know I could be a good grant writer. When I bother to proofread, I'm a good to great writer, and I really do flourish at jobs in which explicit instructions are de riguer. Furthermore, grant writing/making skills are useful in both the arts and community service- the fields closest to my heart. Finally, the jobs outlook for grant writers is better than average, and apparently, one can make a decent living out of it. In a sign that the universe may be opening itself up to my eventual employment in this field, I keep meeting people involved in grant writing/making here in Rochester. Most recently, on VD, Blow Out introduced me to a friend who is currently a grant writer, and who will be transitioning to grant making at the state level later this month. He's going to hook me up with some ideas about how to get involved in this area, which is nice as I have little to no experience.

In short, things are trending up here in Rochacha.


Wendell said...

I need to try UC-ing. You can be my tutor.

Maven said...

I love this whole entry, and I'm laughing about UC. I think I might be a little bit latinopeoples because I definitely want to tell people what to do alla time.

Also, if you want some grantwriting experience over here (i.e. in a volunteer way), I'm sure Brad would take you on for his opera project. I've written a handful of apps so far and keep getting the shaft.

madness rivera said...

'Member when you all tried to UC me on Facebook? Ay pero good times...

My MIL is the Queen of the UC. She'll blurt random shit out so loudly and I'll be on the floor crying and other people (esp in Cali) are all What the hell with this lady . . .and she and I will go back and forth until we're laughing or in agreement ("Victory") though the victory, to me, is really just when you get tired.

Way to go on the gym tip.

the jewess said...

His hair done been did. What a fabulous balenbyme's day.

Good luck with the dips.

Anonymous said...

Ay, pero pol favollllllllllllll! Que juelllllllllga!!!
I love you, BoundBabi...thanks for including me and thanks to Maven for the forward :)

Elbowgrease said...

Ah.Ha.Ha! That coffee was rico, or since I'm in Chile, let's call it superrico. I love this whole damn thing, dipping on the dance floor, finding your way and especially, getting blown out, umm, that was supposed to be meeting blown out, sorry. Really Dom, this has it all, tragedy, comedy, amour, fabulous.