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Monday, December 27, 2004


I spent a few too many moments agonizing over the title, so this entry is untitled. Sometimes it's hard to find a single word that sums up everything going on, so you can fill in the blank yourself.

So. What's been going on? I've discovered I react in extremes to things. For example, working out (yes, why don't we make this about the recent "I feel fat" blog entries). In my mind, instead of creating moderate goals, I create these UberGoals that I must meet. So, when on one day I don't want to workout, I have failed and therefore the whole infrastructure collapses. Basically, I realized that I need a more moderate approach to goal setting and goal accomplishing. To help, I found this kickass software, Mind Manager, which is the coolest software I've ever seen. It's a tool for recording thoughts in an abstract way, kind of like the way I think. I've using the 21-day demo to see if I like it. Already it's helped me sort some stuff out. I'll post an image later of my thoughts (you are warned!).

Of course, extremism is not limited to weight. I think this way about work and leisure (aka work hard play hard). Add to that a cycle of habit and I end up working a ton, then coming home and force-relaxing where I do relaxing things highly focused for hours. Yeah, very relaxing. No wonder I am tired a lot.

In other news I've been doing genealogy research (I force-relaxed that this past weekend), and have found some interesting results. Not to slight any other side of the family that I haven't investigated yet, but I found a highly probable link to an ancestor, George Soule, who was a Pilgrim on the Mayflower!! Another line, Hart, landed in Hartford, Connecticut. They were important in the formation of that area. Kinda neat stuff!

The most exciting news of course is that I got over the main burst of Cedar Fever. Finally, the runny nose and sore throat and flu-like symptoms went away. Now, everyone else around me has it. Clearly, I paved the way into the new world of post-cedar fever madness. Now, I just need to maintain health through the new year until, sometime in March, the cedar stops it's relentless march of plague-ridden doom across South Texas and the sensitive nostrils contained therein.

Next? Well, I am going to try resuming working out today. I took the last two weeks off (it feels like 200) to gorge on holiday food and try to do everything I could to keep cedar suffocation at bay. I think once, in cedar-riddled brain fever I even prayed to Santa.

Make sure you watch any episode of Star Trek Voyager. Also, find and watch The Rabit-Proof Fence. It's a must.

Finally, make sure you drink beer or other alcohol the next time you are sick. It sounds insane, but I'll bet money on it that you'll feel better the following day (barring so much drinking you are hungover, unconscious, or wake up in Vegas with a new wife, husband, or Elvii).

Thursday, December 16, 2004


So... things are changing. Life is interesting. I am slightly inebriated.

The last few times I've been sick, alcohol has managed to cure me. Now, I am particularly too lazy and paranoid to become addicted to alcohol despite being much more apt to drink it than when I was younger.

Tonight I decided to test the healing power of beer again. I've been hacking my lungs out all day. My allergies are horrendous. Props to cedar for being so blatantly evil and destructive. Kudos to the enemy. It was also a particularly bizarre day with politics, intrigue, vendor food, and Uncertainty. Throughout it all, I sniffed, snorted, hacked, and cleared my throat. It's like I have become a snot factory serving the greater North American continent.

After work, my good pal John Smith (that's his real name) and I went to Chili's Restaurant for some final work and relaxation -- to get away from the crowd and responsibility. The beer was tall and strong, and the chips were crispy and salty. Queso runneth over.

We drank, we laughed, and we could have composed mighty missives on napkins (which are sacred contracts and all-powerful in the context of bar-noise, beer, and the quiet sussurus of waitress-folk).

Oddly enough, I do feel better. It's like Shiner Bock can do what pounds of Allegra-D and Nasonex cannot: halt the destructive Satanic tide of cedar. Oh, the cedar with its miniscule sharp protein molecules. Bastard. You suck so bad.

OK a couple of beers are not enough to toast me that much anymore, but I haven't coughed in a couple of hours now and that's a freaking improvement. My throat is still sore, but the continuous tide of nasal lubrication has eased. Perhaps I will sleep tonight; perchance to dream. One generally needs more than 12 hours of sleep across 4 days. It's all that keeps blithering stupidity from reigning.

While I'm at it, here's a shout to John -- one of the cooler guys I know. (Ok, he's pretty much the only one who is not blood-related or paying me to be friends). John's one of those guys who has a giant heart and a mind nearly as lethal as cedar. From the movie Grand Canyon: "How do you know he won't be your best friend until the day that you die?" Well -- he's that kind of guy, and I'll be lucky if we are friends for good. He saves my ass continuously at work and challenges me to be better. Props to Smitty!

So, back to the original unmeandered thought: transition.

Beliefs are changing, reality is altering. It's for the better, if slow in coming. It's been a hard year so far, and it's so trite to be reflective now, but since I'm playing the game, might as well play it. Change will be welcome. We'll see how the rest of the year pans out, and how next year starts.

I've been slower on the workout this week because of Cedar (KHHHHAAAAANNNNN!!!!!), but am dedicated to becoming closer to the slimmer me in the picture at the top of the blog. I just need to remember what it was like to be creative and original, motivated and artistic. Funny how it's that, rather than exercise, that makes it so. Exercise is the method, the beliefs are what matters.

Keep coming back and thanks to all my peeps for providing comments along the way. Off we go to create a better personal reality.

The cats are looking at me with "You'll feel even better if you come pet us" eyes and Dawn has forgotten what I look like. Off to do the next thing.

Monday, December 13, 2004

The Evil of ancient times has returned: Cedar.

I find myself alsmost wishing this morning that I had the flu. Instead, I have Cedar Fever. Although fever is actually conspicuously absent, Cedar Fever is the scourge of South Texas from December through March or so. Having had the flu last year at this time, I almost -- almost -- prefer it's high-intensity short duration.

Itchy eyes, runny nose, sore throat, 2 hours of sleep last night spend fighting off a "drowning in snot" feeling. Yes, it's close enough to be a close cousin of the flu. Cedar Fever shrugs off Allegra-D like it was mere mist. Saturday I was fine. Sunday, all the gates of Hell opened to welcome me home for a few months.

You know I am going to turn this into an impromptu belief extraction session. For variety, I will make it more narrative and hopefully fun. Despite the fact I feel possessed, I will do what I can to stay positive and less soul-crushingingly malevolent. I'll also make it short.

Cedar is evil. Oh wait, that's a fact not a belief. lol

"I feel miserable from Cedar allergies."
Misery loves company -- there's bunches of us suffering right now, so there's got to be a belief in mass creation of suffering. It's no coincidence this time of year is about suffering: there's the holidays, shopping, Christmas, and other suffering factors. Really, though, there must be something about this time of year that makes us suffer. So, why, from a belief standpoint would I want to inflict allergies on myself.

At this point it's probably important to note that this reality creation stuff focuses on the premise that belief, imagination, and thoughts form emotions and reality. There's entire books written about this and I recommend you check them out for more information. It'll make your life a boatload better. Start with "The Nature of Personal Reality" by Jane Roberts.

So, to create something that makes you feel bad and want to be antisocial. I think this is about rebellion and also joining a group creation. Those of us who get sick -- or, me at least -- are those who need a break from something. I worked my fat little behind off all this year and have such a drive to work, work, work, work, work, that I apparently create a need for my body to shut down. The seasonal allergy thing is a way I know it will happen each year.

Think about it this way: in the grand scheme of a workaholic's life, what way can I guarantee that I work relentlessly all year but give myself a mandatory down time I won't give myself voluntarily? Why, some kind of repeatable yet harmless sickness. This makes sense to me. I never rest. I never take it easy. Except when I am sick, or I force myself into vacation out of sheer exhaustion (like I did in November).

So, how can I counteract this plague of plagues? How to stop the evil that is Cedar? Changing beliefs. I can turn it around and say, "It's ok to relax. Take a break, Friedman." And, then, actually do it. That may have the effect of relaxing the belief rigidity, and allow me to breathe better and not feel so evil. Perhaps I'll take one of my leftover vacation days next week -- curl up on the couch with a good book (I am reading the aforementioned guidebook, NPR), pet the cat and snooze the day away in silent contemplation of all that is decent in the world. If I agree to it and do it right, I may not have a single sniffle.

Sounds like a plan. Another belief accepted.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Ich Bin eine Evildoer

I really am getting somewhere. I've been a dick lately -- especial to Dawn (props to Dawn for putting up with me). All this belief deconstruction has shown me that I do not like change as much as I thought or claim to think.

To begin with, I have become angry. Why should I change? Why is this happening? Why do I do these things? Psychologists everywhere put their fingers on their lips and think silently, "First stage of change/grief process". They're right. I am angry, resistant, and indignant. I get mad and don't even realize I am mad. My words just spill out like some kind of putrescent baby-spew.

Oddly enough, I don't act this way at work. At work, I am slightly withdrawn, somewhat tired but agreeable in general. It's only on familiar, safe turf that I turn into The Bastard.

But, all is not lost. I worked out on Monday and this morning. My "schedule" is 3 days a week for 30 minutes. I've done 15 mins of cardio on Monday and 25 today. Then, I follow it with 15-20 minutes on the BowFlex. Yes, it feels good. Dammit.

Then there's my thoughts: they are changing. I can feel them shifting like a sand dune against a stiff wind. Apparently I have a belief about being dramatic somewhere: all this change must be hard so that I have something to bitch about.

But, what's different about this attempt versus all the other failed health/fitness/financial attempts is that I am becoming a dick and just fighting the whole way. This means I will finally make it. Sounds like a belief to me.

Monday, December 06, 2004

I think therefore I feel

So. It's been quite a week since last I posted. After my belief deconstruction post, I experienced several days of very good energy. However, this past weekend I "crashed" and experienced some devastating poor energy filled with self-deprecation and frustration. This morning as I drove to work in a dreary rainfall (reality creationists will note the significance of this imagery) I heard my mind utter that terrible anti-Sumari refrain: "I am not special.". WELL! Time to continue the belief deconstruction. Obviously I am getting somewhere.

To continue. "I feel fat" -- from a food perspective.

I feel fat.

Linked emotions, food-related:
  • Feeling fat makes me dislike food
  • Feeling fat makes me eat uncontrollably
  • Feeling fat makes me crave "bad" foods

Now, again, belief statements that create those emotions.

Feeling fat makes me dislike food:
-- I believe foods I like are not good for me
-- I believe food is functional only

Feeling fat makes me eat uncontrollably:
-- I believe I should not be restricted on what I eat
-- I believe I have no willpower with food

Feeling fat makes me crave "bad" foods
-- I believe some foods are bad for me
-- I believe I like eating foods that are bad for me

Now, where do those beliefs come from?

I believe foods I like are not good for me:
-- I believe I do not have a good concept of nutrition

I believe food is functional only:
-- I believe food is boring

I believe I should not be restricted on what I eat:
-- I believe my body can handle whatever I serve it

I believe I have no willpower with food:
-- I believe I eat habitually to cover insecurity

I believe some foods are bad for me:
-- I believe "fast" or "processed" foods can harm me

I believe I like eating foods that are bad for me:
-- I believe it is convenient to eat fast/processed food
-- I believe there's no reason to cook when I am busy

To summarize, now:

  1. I believe I do not have a good concept of nutrition
  2. I believe food is boring
  3. I believe my body can handle whatever I serve it
  4. I believe I eat habitually to cover insecurity
  5. I believe "fast" or "processed" foods can harm me
  6. I believe it is convenient to eat fast/processed food
  7. I believe there's no reason to cook when I am busy

There's no shortage of belief conflicts here: "I believe my body can handle whatever I serve it" and "I believe fast/processed foods can harm me". So, once again, turn it around into more positive beliefs:

  1. I believe I can become knowledgable about nutrition
  2. I believe food can be exciting
  3. I believe my body can handle whatever I serve it
  4. I believe I can handle insecurities through other methods than eating
  5. I believe "fast" or "processed" foods can be minimzed
  6. I believe it is detrimental to eat fast/processed food
  7. I believe cooking is a more fulfilling method of preparing food

Ultimately, some may find it interesting that the new set of believes are not "positive". Why, for example, do I not just utterly remove fast foods from my diet? Well, for one thing, they taste good despite perceived health risks. Also, I think it's unrealistic to eliminate something -- it reduces choice. However, I can definitely shift my attention so that it's minimized. This will enhance my enjoyment of those foods but reduce the risk. The key here is finding the impulsiveness, which I hope to target through believing food doesn't have to be a scapegoat for insecurity. Additionally, well-prepared home meals can be more fulfilling because I spend more time in their creation -- and I'll save $$ in the process.

So, that's all for now -- next time I think I'll tackle my beliefs around exercise and see if I can figure out why I have desires to exercise but never actually find the motivation to do it -- chosing instead to sit in front of the computer or TV.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

A Great Disturbance in the Force.

I wanted to check in today, however late and report back that, although I haven't deconstructed another belief set today I did think about and, reality creation was positive today. I don't think it's a coincidence.

Ever notice that when you decide to make a change in yourself for the better, such as leaving a job, then all of the sudden everything that used to piss you off so much seems lighter or less intense? I attribute this to the commitment of energy to be more positive. It ripples out from the moment point of decision and affects all belief constructs -- even the 'negative' ones you held prior, so they seem 'better'.

So, today, after my belief construction yesterday, I had a really solid good day -- it's been over a year since I had one. Everything at work went right, I suddenly saw new opportunities that weren't there before, and everything was the way I wanted it to be.

More belief deconstruction will follow, for sure -- if it continues this positive, I want more.

I would like to point out, as my Sumafi wife pointed at in typical Sumafi fashion : this isn't really belief deconstruction so much as belief acceptance. In typical Sumari fashion, I demured but will continue to call it whatever the hell I want to. :) It's my reality, after all.

I think tomorrow I want to still deal with "I feel fat", but from a food-oriented point of view. Last night, after the belief work I went out and got doughnuts. This seems counter productive, but I insist it's a good sign -- it means I am stirring the pot and falling back on safety, which means I am creating the energy and intention of changing it. I think after the food-point of view, I'll tackle the protection point of view and see what happens.

Have a good night. Thanks for playing.

Feel free to comment to any posts by clicking on the comments link below them.

Monday, November 29, 2004

Belief Deconstruction

So, today I am going to do an exercise for myself in belief deconstruction. This is an exercise I learned at a Seth workshop a number of years ago, and have felt the need to try it out.

The point of belief deconstruction is to work back from a feeling to the core beliefs that provide the issue you are working on so much energy. In that way, by isolating the belief, you can accept you have the belief and then change it because it no longer has hold over you.

In keeping with the holiday spirit, I am going to deal with the feeling I have of being fat. Now, to many I may not appear fat, but in my head I'm saying, "I feel fat, I feel full, etc.". So, regardless of how others see me, this is how I see me. Thus, the feeling: I feel fat.

From this feeling, I state linked emotions -- there may be several:
  • Feeling fat makes me feel embarrassed.
  • Feeling fat makes me feel lazy.
  • Feeling fat makes me feel insufficient/incapable of doing what I want.

Now, the fun part -- finding belief statements that generate the emotion.

Feeling fat makes me feel embarrassed:
-- I believe other people will not like looking at me
-- I believe other people will not like being around me

Feeling fat makes me feel lazy.
-- I believe it's too hard to make the fat go away: requires exercise & diet
-- I believe I don't want to change my habits

Feeling fat makes me feel insufficient:
-- I believe I am too out of shape to do anything well
-- I believe I won't have enough energy or attention to do things

Obviously there's more beliefs, but this is a start. Next, I take those beliefs and ask why that belief is there:

I believe other people will not like looking at me:
-- I believe other people don't like looking at fat people

I believe other people will not like being around me:
-- I believe people are more interested in looks than brains

I believe it's too hard to make the fat go away: requires exercise & diet
-- I believe it requires too much effort to get into shape.

I believe I don't want to change my habits
-- I believe change is unknown and scary

I believe I am too out of shape to do anything well
-- I believe if I am out of shape, I will have an excuse not to do something well.

I believe I won't have enough energy or attention to do things:
-- I believe I don't have limitless energy and power, or adequate power to accomplish my goals.

Things are starting to become clearer: If I refine one more time, I might have some interesting core beliefs to work with.

  1. I believe I don't like looking at out-of-shape people.
  2. I believe people are more interested in looks than brains.
  3. I believe it requires too much effort to get into shape.
  4. I believe change is unknown and scary.
  5. I believe if I am out of shape, I will have an excuse not to do something well.
  6. I believe I don't have adequate power to accomplish my goals.

So -- given this set of core beliefs, when I decide I want to get into shape (like now, during the holidays) I start feeling intense laziness and tiredness and lack of motivation.

Notice how some of these beliefs conflict with each other: "I believe I don't like looking at out of shape people" and "I believe it requires too much effort to get into shape." These two beliefs conflict with each other. The first expresses a desire to get into shape, the second expresses that my desire to get into shape is too difficult. Working on those two beliefs, they manifest as an emotion of frustration.

So the next step? I guess it's to realize that I chose to align with those beliefs and emotions. From there, I can choose other beliefs and emotions to accomplish my goals. This helps me clarify my goal, also. Remember -- I started with "I feel fat". Now, I realize that my goal is not the opposite of "I feel fat", such as "I feel skinny", but rather, "I feel fit, I feel energized". The original "I feel fat" emotions arrived from the conflict of beliefs. If I align my beliefs, then my emotions will be different.

To conclude, here's six different core beliefs to help align in a different way:

  1. I believe I don't like being an out-of-shape person.
  2. I believe people are interested in looks and brains.
  3. I believe geting into shape is effortless.
  4. I believe change is safe and easy.
  5. I believe if I am in shape, I will have an excuse not to do something well. :)
  6. I believe I have more than adequate power to accomplish my goals.

I could abstract these just a little further to make them true core beliefs:

  1. I believe I am fit.
  2. I believe I accomplish my goals effortlessly.
  3. I believe I change safely and easily.
  4. I believe I do all things well.
  5. I believe I have limitless energy.

If you think about it, when you were a kid -- aren't these the beliefs you held??? What happened?

This has been an interesting exercise! I'll tackle another issue tomorrow!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Navel Nonsense

It's that typical holiday day at work: we all said we wouldn't be this way, yet here we are, working. Or, at least physically at work. The breaks are a little bit longer... the hallway conversations a little bit louder and lengthier... most people are absent, out somewhere preparing for Turkey Day or praising their chosen diety that they are not working.

I, however, am at work -- but, I have help now with three new workers and am finally just doing 2 people's jobs instead of 5. Today, even though I am at work, feels like a vacation.

So. There's been lots in my head lately and I need to get them out on paper at some point. Here's some broad categories.
-- I want to write a query paper to the XSL community regarding separating style from style sheets. Sounds counterproductive, but is sure provides an opportunity for some great extensibility, at least the way I see it.
-- I want to write some letters or thoughts about my favorite musicians/book authors (Stephen R. Donaldson, Kirsty Hawkshaw, Douglas Adams).
-- I want to do some website design now that I know a little more. It would be cool to re-work our picture website and make it a lot more fun.
-- I want to learn some more ASP.NET once school is over. Of all the classes I took this past 2 years, my programming classes are the ones I liked the most. Yes, everyone is nutso over Java, but once a Microsoft baby, always a Microsoft baby. I like .NET.

Well I guess that's it for now. I am pretty sure there's more I want to do. Watch for it here!

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Unbeliever, Leper, Lover.

So the main thing I've been looking forward to lately is reading the newest book by my favorite author, Stephen R. Donaldson. When I learned earlier this year that "Runes of the Earth", the first of four books of the "Thomas Covenant" series (the "last chronicles of", in fact) I went nuts. As the book arrived freshly minted from, I had just started the first of the six prior books so I could be "up to speed".

This weekend, appropriately on vacation, I finally reached the new book, and boy does Donaldson deliver -- as usual. Despite the many year hiatus between this book and the prior set, I could not set the book down. I devoured it like a Raver and hurled the book to the floor at the awesome cliffhanger ending that made me shriek with joy and anticipation of the 2nd book. Not many books thrill me that way.

Do I have post-Donaldson/Covenant depression now that I've finished the book? No... I've got lots of anticipation (and his latest book from his private investigator series as well). Everyone should read Donaldson. I think someone from reviews summed up Donaldson pretty well in a comparison between him and Tolkein. To paraphrase, Tolkein wrote as an investigation of literature. Donaldson writes with fantasy and character in mind -- he really makes you see and feel the people he writes about.

OK. That's that. It's been good. It was timely with my much needed vacation. I am somewhat sane again, although sanity, like time and space, is relative.

Wherefore do I go hence? I go to a meeting and then lunch. But, I have my new XML peeps here and off I go to rule the world. Or at least my relative version of it.

I dedicate myself now to the idea that I'd like to write more frequent blog entries. Donations will be accepted to help my cause.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

I Never Find Perfection

INFP: My Myers-Briggs personality profile. At work, I signed up to take a test to find out who I am. Well, the results are in, and it describes me perfectly!!
INTROVERTED-Applies to the way we interact with the world. Introverts are people whose thoughts and ideas are drawn inward. This type scan the external environment and make evaluations based on their inner ideas and mental concepts. They derive their energies from these inner ideas. It is important for them to take time to study and reflect on a subject to get the right idea, before taking action. This type is able to grasp and accept a moral principle in its abstract form. Introverts are territorial and desire space. They draw their energies from activities where they can be alone to meditate or activities that require few people. Introverts can experience a sense of loneliness when they are in a crowd. Some are the most alone when surrounded by people, especially strangers. This type can enjoy being around people, but it can drain their energies. They need to find quiet places and solitary activities where they can meditate and recharge. Many introverts achieve the ability to extravert, but they never become extraverts. Introverts enjoy their private time, and if this is easily invaded, they learn to develop a high level of concentration so as to shut out the external world. Many view them as great listeners, but they may view others as taking advantage of this. They may have problems expressing themselves and are sometimes labeled by others as shy. Many times they will have to rehearse things before they say them. This type may wish to get their ideas out more forcefully and like to state their thoughts and feelings without interruption. They resent ones that blurt out something they were just about to say.

INTUITIVE-Applies to the way we take in information. Intuitive types look for the possibilities in life. What is possible is always in front of them, pulling at them like a magnet. Intuitive types are attracted to fantasy, fiction, and the future. They may enjoy figuring out how things work just for the sheer pleasure of doing so. This type is attracted to pun and word games. They are masters at metaphors and smilies. Intuitive tends to think of several things at once and because of this are sometimes labeled as absentminded. This type likes to look at the big picture. They try to read between the lines, not accepting things at face value. Intuitive types tend to trust their hunch, their gut feeling, and this usually prove right, since they are highly in tune with their intuitive powers, their sixth sense. They are creative and imaginative, but are sometimes viewed as dreamers.

FEELING-Applies to the way we come to decisions. Feeling types make decisions based on how others feel. They are empathetic and sympathetic to others needs. This type puts themselves out for others, putting others needs above those of their own. Feeling types value and almost insist on others living in harmony. They will avoid conflict at all cost. This type tries to please others. They will take a comment back if they say something that offends someone else. Feeling types are usually friendly, tactful, and enjoy contributing to the welfare of others. They are personable, being more interested in people than in things.

PERCEPTIVE-Applies to the way we structure our lives. Perceptive types put much value on the open ended. They do not like to come to a conclusion unless forced to and then may still be uncomfortable with its closure. Being aware of how many factors are involved and how much is still unknown, they are terrified at making a rash decision. They hope they can solve a problem simply by understanding it better, by seeing it from all sides and eventually being able to see the thing to do. They love to explore the unknown. They don't like to be pinned down, to plan a task, to make definite statements. They prefer to be spontaneous, to live for the moment. They like to make-work fun or they lose interest in it. They don't believe in deadlines, but use them instead as alarm clocks allowing them to pick up spurts of energy at the last minute and accomplish the task. In conversations they can jump from subject to subject, depending on whatever enters their mind, or whatever enters the room.

INFPs-live their lives focusing on their values. They know what is important to them and protect this at all cost. Their values focus on the optimistic verses the pessimistic, although they are often conscious of the negative. To understand the INFP is to understand their cause. They can work tirelessly toward a cause that they deem worthy. They will quietly let others know what is important to them, and rarely will they give up on their purpose. They will go along with the crowd, sometimes even letting decisions be made for them, until someone violates their value system. Then they will dig their heels into the ground and will speak up for their feelings, insisting their values be followed.

INFPs are withdrawn and are sometimes hard to get to know. Some may view them as shy. But those that take the time to get to know them will find them warm and gentle, with a surprising sense of humor. They care deeply for those they consider special friends. Putting forth-unusual sacrifices to help such individuals. They often have a subtle, tragic motif running through their lives -- inner pain and unease which others seldom detect.

INFPs are creative and are constantly seeking out new possibilities. They have a gift with language and usually will express this by means of writing. Their intuitive preference supplies the imagination and their feeling preference giving them the need to communicate. They are gifted at interpreting symbols -- being drawn to metaphors and smilies. Because of these gifts they often write in lyrical fashion.

INFPs work must be more than just a paycheck, it must be fun and must contribute to something that is important to their values. To be the most productive they need a sense of purpose behind their job. They often have to look at the large picture in order to see how specific programs fit in. They are adaptable to changes and to new ideas. They work well with others being conscius of others' feelings and relating with most, though not always vocally. They like to work with others who are cooperative and who share their same set of values. They strive for harmony and dislike conflict.

INFPs treasure their privacy and may keep a lot to themselves. They need time and space for reflection. Others usually get along well with them, although they may not know them intimately.

INFPs may not always be organized. They may tend to lose things or to forget appointments. Only when they see the importance of organization in a task will they strive to work at it in an organized way to get it done. They can be extremely patient with complicated issues, but may become impatient with routine and details.

INFPs strive for perfection, and this is especially the case when using their feeling preference. They may have trouble finishing a project, because they never find it is good enough. Even when the project must be finished, they may feel the need to go back and improve on it later.

Reluctantly INFPs may accept leadership roles. They lead with their values being their guide. They do not aggressively lead people, but rather work with people to develop their talents and to independently achieve their goals. They have a hard time criticizing others, but will try to motivate them by their appreciation and praise. When conflicts arise, they avoid directly approaching the situation, but would rather wait for the others to work out the situation themselves.

INFPs view leisure activity as very important. However they may have a difficulty separating it from work. If they have a special skill they use at work, they may use this skill in their leisure time to help friends, family or those in need. When they are interested in pursuing a new leisure activity, they may spend a great deal of time researching this activity. Many INFPs enjoy activities that are done alone such as reading, listening to music, or gardening. This gives them the opportunity for reflection and meditation. They may also enjoy social activities with those they feel close to. When they want to be social they can be outgoing, charming and quite funny, making them a pleasure to have around.

INFPs present a calm and pleasant face to the world around them. Because they are reserved, they may be overlooked. But to those that know them they have a view into their warmth and concern and their deep commitments to their values.

Church Worker
College Professor: Humanities/Art
Educational Consultant
Employment Development Specialist
English Teacher
Fine Arts Teacher
Human Resources Development Specialist
Religious Educator
Social Scientist
Social Worker
Speech Pathologist
Writer: poet/Novelist

They can do a good job of blending production with compassion for the work force. They enjoy giving freedom for each to develop according to their own personality and are willing to give commendation and have a listening ear for new ideas. They are able to communicate well with others on a one to one basis.

They are intellectually astute, competent, and enriched with idealism.

They have a high need to be of service to others. They enjoy working toward causes they believe in.

They work well alone, and are faithful to their duties and obligations.

When the workplace becomes negative, they may become restless. They can have mood swings between stubbornness and criticism. This is uncharacteristic of their nature and is an indicator of stress.

They are perfectionists. They may be self-critical. They feel there is never enough time to do the job right. They must recognize when to quit, and live with a less than perfect product. They also must realize that others will never fully meet up to their expectations.

They may become discouraged if their work is not geared toward something they believe in. They want control of their projects, and if they lose control they can lose interest.

They may have trouble working in a competitive environment.

They may become unrealistic when planning a project. They may become inflexible when requested to change some of their ideas.

They need work that allows them to express their vision, and lets them work within their own set of values and beliefs.

They need work that gives them control over the product and the process of creating it, allowing them time to fully develop their ideas.

They need work that gives them a private space and uninterrupted time, but allows them from time to time to meet with ones they respect, and bounce their ideas off them.

They need work that gives them a flexible schedule, with no restraint to rules and regulations, and allows them to work as they feel inspired.

They need work that is done in a tension free environment, with other creative caring individuals.

They need work that lets them be original, and that encourages personal growth and rewards it.

They need work that gives them time to do the best possible job, and that doesn't call for them to do presentations of their ideas before large crowds.

They need work that lets them help others to learn how to grow and develop their full potential.

They need work that allows them to develop deep one to one relationships with people, letting them understand others and discover what makes them tick.

They need work that allows them to fulfill their ideas, without being limited by money, time, or other obstacles.

INFPs enjoy working alone, treasuring the opportunity for contemplation. They enjoy variety in whatever they do. They enjoy taking on new projects and activities, but have a tendency to take on too many things at once. They get a sense of satisfaction from the fact that nothing is constant, which means they can positively influence a cause in a positive or constructive way. INFPs are loyal and industrious team players. They work hard to achieve team harmony and make their work meaningful. They are encouraged from approval from others, but when criticized they may be deeply hurt, taking such criticism personally.

INFPs can be powerful leaders when dealing with people and drawing people together to achieve their purpose.

INFPs lead with people in mind. They look to the individual growth and development and will look for a way to encourage and support such growth. They may tend to relate with a few special people, being drawn to their causes and goals. They quietly encourage these individuals to achieve whatever they set out to do.

INFPs manage in a very quiet unassuming way, getting personally involved with individuals within the organization. They are at their best dealing with people, drawing out their outstanding qualities. They are naturally tuned into the motivations and emotions of others, having a gift at understanding individual differences. Because INFPs are focused in on people's emotions and motivations, they become aware of and get involved in their co-workers personal problems. They may feel obligated at resolving disagreements and conflicts among employees, trying to create an atmosphere of harmony.

INFPs listen carefully and intently to others, giving them individual attentions and responding with the proper feedback for the needed situation. They masterfully show appreciation and give praise when they find the appropriate opportunity. They direct their praise toward human accomplishment. They are alert to individual potential and look for ways to help individuals meet that potential.

Friday, September 10, 2004


On my way to work this morning I saw the ground along the highway torn up at the turn where I stop every day before approaching work. Yesterday I'd seen the construction crew beginning their digging and I smelled the raw earth and dirt and thought that this kind of work was not so bad for the earth as I usually think -- isn't the earth made for changing and growth?

Today, the stretch of ground was longer and now devoid of grass. I remembered, suddenly, the stretch of flowers that until yesterday occupied that space every spring. Instead of fresh and new, the earth looked tired and worn.

I reflected on my own inner world -- also tired and worn from continuous pressures of work. I remember now how it feels to have the flowers gone.

Too tired to move or protest.

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Hearing Aid

So, today, after a long work-induced hiatus I am going to try my hand at blogging again. I'm pretty worn out by the work events of the last few months: 75+ hour weeks, post traumatic stress disorder, fear, expectation, etc. You know, standard work stuff.

So lately I am focused on people not hearing me. This is happening at work with all the haulacitude going on quite a bit. I mean, I have a bunch of ideas about how to redo things for this process but no one seems interested in listening. It's getting irritating. I am thinking of boycotting a managers meeting today to see if anyone notices.

It's like, I have an idea and there's no infrastructure for me to provide that idea anywhere and have it be reviewed and accepted and put into place. There's no sponsors at the level of innovation I am suggesting, so how can a good idea succeed within a given framework? How can a company move forward without a way for ideas to reach a place of review and decision?

So, that's my damage. I am full of great process concepts and have no way to express them. I take them to supervisors and managers and they say, "wow, that's a great idea!" but then nothing happens. How can it? There's no way to move those ideas anywhere.

No one is listeninig. It's possible they can't. I'm still pissed.

In other news, the work we did is fantastic and will be awesome to behold when released to the general public and students at large. It's really quite a miracle.

More later or tomorrow or at least sooner than several months. Thanks for waiting.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Take the purple pill, Neo.

Some poetry based on a revelation I had while driving home last night.

Soon, I focus on the inner matrix of me.
Time to recall the original pattern of self
That transcends time and space.
It's too easy to focus on the differences between
The original matrix and the present me, where I've spent
Time expirmenting with being disconnected.
A return to the original matrix will revitalize
And resynthesize better energy,
Return me to the oneness of myself in the world.
I need this.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Mr. Subtle.

I'm reading this book by Rick Riordan. He writes fictional mysteries set in San Antonio. The main character is a P.I. who knows Tae Kwan Do, has a sword over the bathroom toilet and a cat that eats chips and tuna and enchiladas. One of the characters is a bad-ass dude who has a .357 magnum named "Mr. Subtle". This cracks me up.

Well, I've been absent a while because I've been busy and the homework structure of this class is different than most which causes me less free time. Our Big Project (that's it's name) at work is coming to fruition so everything is going haywire and they need me for extended periods of time. In fact today I had three simultaneous meetings. And I was recently accused of not being able to multi-task, if you can believe that.

Some, an executive summary until next meeting:
-- I love my new car. Saturns rock.
-- I am going to get another A in my networking class unless I really screw up next week.
-- Food involving tongues and intestines of animals are disgusting
-- I am a sandwich

Sunday, May 16, 2004

A new edition to the family.

It's not what you think, family members.

I am retiring the 1995 Saturn SL1 and trading it in for a Saturn ION-1!! I pick it up on Tuesday and will post a picture of it when I get home.

In the meanwhile, you can look at Saturn's ION-1 site to see what it looks like. Mine is Silver Nickel-colored.

Hooray for a new vehicle! You gotta love Saturn. They sent a $1000 buyer incentive, gave me 0% interest for 5 years, and it comes with ABS, floor mats, windows tinting, interior & exterior protectant, and some really cool features my car doesn't currently have.


On the health front, my ear is much better finally. I still have some ringing and high pitched noises are still very loud and metallic sounding, but the balance and volume control seems to be better. I visit the doc on Tuesday for a "hole in my ear" follow up and general checkup. Right after, I pick up the lovely new ION.

Off to do tons 'o homework (week 3 of 5 of my Networking and Telecommunications Concepts class).


Tuesday, May 04, 2004


Make it stop!!! The ringing in my ears has gone on for two days now. Now I know what my brother is going through every day of his life. Send him sympathy. Ringing in the ears sucks, even if it's temporary.

Stay out of my head.

Amoxicillin is my hero. On Monday morning I woke up with a pounding pain in my left ear, compounding the stuffy-headedness and raspy voice I had on Sunday. After working (stubbornly) for 3 hours I went to the Texas Med Clinic and it turns out I have an ear infection. The burst blood vessel on the ear drum was a bonus. I hadn't had too much trouble with the sinuses, but as I left the clinic, I felt a pain in my nose and then hocked out the largest, greenest, most disgusting boogers I've ever seen come out of my body. Glad to share that with you. Herald enjoyed it and so should you.

Needless to say the amoxicillin started to work in the evening and I feel relatively better, although my head still pounds some. Late in the evening, I heard this bloop-bloop-bloop sound and suddenly liquid started coming out of my left ear. This does not usually happen and I suspected a perforated eardrum. According to Dr. Internet I was correct.

Inexplicably I went to work today, even though when I turn my head rapidly it seems to continue to turn a few more inches. I have a critical project meeting at 10:30, but when that puppy is over I am Audi 5000 back to the med clinic to make sure the perforation is ok (I called and they said this is typical and they would verify for free). Then, I am asleep as much as possible. Of all the things I miss the most it's not my mind, it's sleep. I think I haven't slept well in two or three weeks for a variety of reasons. My body is pissed off. It should be; I've been mean to it.

I may take tomorrow off also to make up for it. I'm sorry, body.

I start wondering about the seeming frailness of the body. I got these two infections from nowhere and wham! if I didn't have the luxury of modern medicine and penicillin I would likely be dead in a few days. Am I so far removed from my hunter/gather roots that the vast quantities of McFood I have eaten in my life has ruined my immune system to such a degree that I am reliant on modern medicine to keep me sustained? I need to figure out a new paradigm that puts me in the fittest category of the survival of the fittest realm. By all rights, 100 years ago I would die from this.

So, I am off to get ready for my meeting so I can eventually sleep (and maybe watch some TV). I am sure I will write about the fevered dreams I have and resulting actions to become a stronger, healthier, human (string) bean.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Two out of Ten

Today, pain is much better. I had been worried during Pilates that I would be in a lot of pain, but it actually went away during the workout. I am quite aware of my energy centers as I strengthen the abs. I realize I carry a lot of tension in my hips / hip flexors. I realized this because as I activate the abs more, I use the hips less, especially for walking. So, they become sore yet more relaxed. This is very cool!

What else? The great office purge continues at home. I am tossing things left and right and with any luck within a couple of weeks will have all the little projects done and can concentrate on other stuff. I still have two days of vacation from school left and I am enjoying it. The next 8 classes (that's all that's left!!) are much easier. I was reviewing notes for my next class, Fundamentals of Telecommunications, and realized I knew all this stuff from my MCSE. I am looking forward to a little coasting the rest of the way. It's been earned, so don't give me any crap about it. :)

Other than that, work is hectic and Herald (the dark matter of the universe) is reminding me to be a cool Frood. Not to get hung up on the little things. It's easy for him to say -- he is after all, a good portion of the unaccounted for mass of the universe and is therefore infinitely large (or small).

Thanks, Herald.

Monday, April 26, 2004


Everyone knows that the name of the center of our galaxy is really Steve (see for details. Steve floats in space--which is astonishingly vast; so vast in fact as to be nearly incomprehensible and those who comprehend it have yet to prove it's disturbing vastness.

Space is made up of a whole lot of stuff, but is mostly, well, space. Emptiness with thin molecules of hardy compounds. Space is horrifyingly cold and violent. We couldn't live there without protection and oxygen and stuff like that.

But, space is made up of mass and some of that mass is unaccounted for. You should see the size of the scale they weighed the universe with. Of course mass and weight are not the same, but don't think about that for now. Enjoy the size of the scale visual for a moment. If your noodle is baked, this is appropriate.

The unaccounted for mass is called Herald. Herald is everywhere and nowhere all at once. Don't mistake Herald for God (also usually known as Quarl). They aren't the same. Herald is infinitely small because size and mass have nothing to do with each other. Well, maybe they do, but not in Herald's case.

Herald is a harbinger. He fortells the Great Equilibrium where all things entropically spread out and stabilize into a gel-like substance very similar to Jell-O. You would know this if you listen to the dark matter in yourself. For, Herald is dark matter, the unknown mass of the universe.

Fear Herald. But, listen to him too. He is everywhere.

Eight out of Ten

This is my pain scale, where 1 = no pain and 10 = excruciating.

It was a tough week. I am addressing issues related to beliefs and physical pain, now. You see, I started taking a Pilates class down the street at the urging of the instructor. Pilates is about strength from within then extending out. This translates into working with your core energy a lot. It all begins with the abdominals. Abdominals are the muscles that support the back. My back is injured from my HEB incident 13 years ago and my abdominals resemble a keg more than a six pack. So, I have core issues.

Last week in Pilates (week 2), I focused on strength in the abdominals and it was great. However, the next couple of days, my original back injury (quadratus lumborum) and subsequent piriformis injury became aggravated again. This is actually the worst I have felt since the original injury 13 years ago.

On Tuesday - Friday I was at an archive conference here in S.A. and we were sitting all day in these hard flat chairs. By Thursday evening I was experiencing limited movement in my ability to walk. Quite frightening. SO I reinstated my back stretches that I had learned and stopped using (I know, I know, Dawn & Mom). This helps fairly immediately, and have continued to use them since. I did not go to the last day of the conference, preferring instead to stay supine with alternating heat / cold packs.

The trick with stretching is that after a while I feel ok and don't want to take the 30 minutes twice a day to do the stretches. This is especially true if I wake up late or am running late or too busy. However, injuries are deceptive that way. I think this needs to be more of something I do every day for good (no comments from the peanut gallery -- you can tell me to do it all you like but until I decide to it's just wasted air).

My original recovery from these injuries took months because I was informed to stay as still as possible to let the injuries heal. This is counter to more modern work at re-strengthening the injured muscles. Sadly, because I feel the original injury never healed properly, I have had subsequent minor support injuries.

One thing I quickly noticed in Pilates is that my right side (where the injuries are at) is weaker and "lower" -- like it's lazy. My abs are stronger on the left side. I feel like I am finally restrengthening this, and to that point, I am, today back at a "3" or "4" in the pain scale. I also discovered that by engaging my abs as I stretch, I get a MUCH more powerful stretch, with more distance and lengthening of the stretches. This is a good thing because it shows progress and is very helpful over all.

So, from an energetic standpoint, I've spent the last 13 years operating outside of core energy. I've been engaging legs, arms, neck, and chest for strength when I really needed to focus on the abs and back -- the central point of strength. Consistent with my experiences with stretching, if I hold tight in my abs and back, my limbs are more able to be stabilized and flexible. Also, pain reduction is MUCH faster. A good thing.

So, largely, I've been dealing with this during the last week. I'm on summer vacation from school (one week, ends this Thursday). There is a lot of belief work in all this stuff, too -- fear of success, fear of using core strength, being stabilized and supportive of myself. This is all what I am working on here, so there's lots of movement happening. Fortunately it's more flexbile movement now. I hope I'm pain free in a day or so.

I have pilates tonight. We'll see. :)

More posting soon. It's been a weird couple of weeks and I've been introspective and thus didn't feel like sharing with the world.

Gotta go square up the joint.

Monday, April 19, 2004

It Matters Not

Woooo it's been a long time since I posted. What's been going on, you ask?

I shaved my head to about 1/4" of hair. And, I have a goatee now. My summer hair-do. After all, it's in the 80s here in Texas already. It's going to be a hot summer.

I just gave birth to a 4500 word, 21-page final paper for my SQL for Business class. It hurt coming out but promises to be a brain-child genius that gets us all an "A". It has my eyes. It also explains a lot of the reason why I have been postless for so long. This class has definitely not been my favorite-- by that I mean I don't understand it very well. Usually I understand class content intuitively but there's nothing intuitive about SQL -- it's all logic. I am really not very good at pure logic, as surprising as that may seem to some. I prefer more ambient brainwave activity of concepts and objects and flights of fantasy. Smoke and mirrors.

Work is finally clearing up some and giving me some space to focus on my work goals for the year (which are barely attainable). My only life goal is to become the Bowflex dude, all ripped and stuff.

BWahahahahaha!!! I have a long way to go.

What else? Dawn and I have actually seen some movies recently. Ladykillers, which I reported on earlier. And, we watched Hidalgo, which was really nice. I felt like I had sand in my shoes when I left the theater.

Ugh not much else -- mostly work and school. I'll write more frequently. Sure I will.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Decadent Pop-Tart Love Affair.

Oh man. I recently rekindled my love affair with pop-tarts. They are so good. Just not good for me. Nothing can make me turn my thoughts from polyunsaturated fats, white flour, sugar, and triglycerides like pop-tarts.

I am genetically predisposed to them. They are part of my biology. They are the nourishment of my psyche. Oh, the Pop-Tart. You are me and I am you. Soul mates.

I like the cherry ones with the crunchy frosting. I also like the watermellon ones and the wildberry ones. There are wildberry Pop-Tarts in the house right now. But not for long. Even though it is Passover, Pop-Tarts are flattened and have not risen, so they qualify as unleavened bread. The escaping Israelites could only pray for a manna like Pop-Tarts. Alas, they never knew them, but Matzoh was made in their image.

That's it. Tonight, I will fear the health dangers no more: I will partake of a pop-tart, with milk as well. These Pop-Tarts are Good. For, of all my creations on this Earth... the pyramids, the Mona Lisa, the moose.... Pop-Tarts are my best creation. Soul, Delal... do you hear me? Tonight we break the veil. Tonight we cross the boundaries into death and bad grades and return unscathed. Tonight we eat Pop-Tart and add them to our biochemistry.

We may even eat two.


I should write something, but I don't want to. Or, more accurately, nothing comes to mind. You may notice this is a theme with me.

Apparently I am working on balance. This may not be entirely clear, so let me explain. I have a belief that balance is good. I don't mean the 'you'll fall over if you don't balance' inner-ear sort of balance, although it can play in. No, good and patient reader, I mean consistency, equivalency, and centeredness.

Balance can be good and bad. By it's nature, balance eventually means stillness and equality. In extreme form, balance is related to the second law of thermodynamics (or, entropy) where all space expands to the point where everything is even and no more movement or expansion occurs. This, assuming a closed galactic universe system.

Balance can be good in that it keeps one from extremes in things. "Even-keeled", "cool about everything", "no worries", "relaxed" -- all phrases used to describe those who are balanced.

I am a balanced person, generally. I don't freak out much.

See how unexciting this post is? I need to re-think that balance thing. A google search on unbalanced reveals:
How to become balanced through God.
Newton's laws of motion.
100 unfair and unbalanced monkeys typing. lol.


Wednesday, March 31, 2004

Abstractocity. It was a dark and I wish it was stormy night.

It's been a hella long day and I am attempting to recover some of the thoughts I had during the day that were like "hey these would be great blog topics. I should blog right now but dammit I have to go to a meeting".

Needless to say I am still working on the XSL FO project and adding PDF requirements to boot. This should mean nothing to most readers. If you do understand it you are sick man, sick. Or, you are my bud, John Smith from IT. <-- Dude, you rock. The only way your name could be cooler is if it was John Doe.

One of the things I thought about today was how we have a lot of products on the drugstore shelf that have mysteriously veiled names, as if to suggest that changing the name of something might pull the wool over most people's eyes and make you wonder what it really is. Either that, or these companies are trying their best to merge a highly scientific name for something (pseudoephedrine, for example) into a common household name, often describing a body part. Well, Sudafed, my faithful decongestant doesn't fit this bill very well (pseudoephedrine for the government?), but there are plenty of other examples. Anusol. My favorite one to make fun of. How the hell does adding "sol" to the end of "Anus" make this something appealing on the shelf? It might as well say "Ass Cream". Or, if it follows scientifically, Anusol means "The Sun's Anus". This, of course, being a great name for a band. Any band.

What about Nasalcrom. Oh, man. That's a product that will never reach my nose. It sounds painful. "Nose Spray" is much more appealing. Nasonex (which I use) -- does this mean elimination of my nose? Am I breaking up with my nose so that it becomes an ex-nose?

I'll delve into the pharmacy of ARM. Allergy Relief Medicine. WTF??? Do I put it on my arm? Is there an arm in the box? Acta-Tabs: perhaps these are bar tabs for active people. Or the thing the government uses to keep tabs on activists. Hmmm...

WELL enough of that.

I've been reading "Seth Speaks" again recently and it's so much easier than the first time I read it. I'm a veteran reality creator now, so it's all easy stuff. OK, well, not exactly easy as recognizable. OK, well, I still have a lot to learn. But the reading is still going faster and I understand much more than the first time a zillion years ago.

So, I worked out today also and my body is quite unhappy. But unhappy in the "sore but I feel good" way. I worked through some muscle pain today which I am not usually successful at (the unsuccessful part is generally me not working through it) so I am oddly optimistic. Wow, a pain free body? Somebody pinch me. LOL that's a good irony.

I chatted with my cool friend Vicki about OCD. Apparently I exhibit signs of this condition: I am afraid to eat new foods or to try new medicines and I have set routines I don't like to deviate from. I always thought it was just not being adventurous and succumbing to my incessant desire to perfect laziness. You can read as many contradictions into that as you like. Do I have OCD? I doubt it. I'll go check the Internet later. It will tell me if I am or not. LOL.

I think that's enough for now, don't you think? I am yawning obsessively and I have this repeated desire to sleep every night. I should obey it.

Thought for the night: "I AM A GENIUS". Correction: "I AM A WEALTHY GENIUS". If I think it, it will be so.

Monday, March 29, 2004


Think about it. There's a force in the universe that we are coming into contact with. It's just a force, neither positive or negative. It's perceived negative by many. It's the force that makes us do things very quickly. It's the force that makes us sure we don't have enough time to get "it" all done in, that we can't control, that controls us with malicious exhaustive intent.

I call this force "haulacitude". It surrounds us and binds us, those of us in the fast-paced entropic world of modern technology and gizmology. The fax machine started it you know, or if I want to get really back in time, then it was the telegraph. That "instant communication" we keep trying to achieve. Now, we have a world full of wireless, wired, and instant communications. I can chat with a nice dude in Wisconsin (like I am right now) and chat with someone in a foreign country like Somalia (like I wish I wasn't right now) all at once. It requires a sort of mental balance to timeslice like that, but I've accepted it. My mind works that way.

So, our lives speed up and we are convinced we can't keep up with it. I think, though, that we can and our stress comes from thinking we can't. Perhaps we need to choose those things we can do quickly but well and concentrate on those. Efficiency means choosing battles wisely, making quick decisions about things that happen quickly.

Ultimately, we will realize all this is just symbology for what we do anyway: we have instant communications through thoughts an energy that is much more clear and pure and honest than anything we devise, including cell phones, instant messengers, and blogs.

But you already know that because we communicated instantly and oh so very efficiently.

I would tell you to have a nice evening, but you already knew it. Bwahahahahaah!!!

Stretching doesn't prevent injuries.

If only I believed in coincidences. Here's an article that just popped up on my news alert about muscle stretching.
Updated: 8:05 p.m. ET March 28, 2004March 28, 2004 - People who stretched are no more or less likely to suffer injuries such as pulled muscles, which the increased flexibility that results from stretching is supposed to prevent.

By IRA DREYFUSS, Associated Press Writer

Stretching does not live up to its reputation as an injury preventer, a study has found. "We could not find a benefit," said Stephen B. Thacker, director of the epidemiology program office at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Athletes who stretch might feel more limber, but they shouldn't count on stretching to keep them healthy, he said.

Thacker and four CDC colleagues combed research databases for studies that had compared stretching with other ways to prevent training injuries. They combined data from five studies so they could look more closely for any benefits that might emerge as a pattern. Their report is in the March issue of the American College of Sports Medicine journal, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise.

People who stretched were no more or less likely to suffer injuries such as pulled muscles, which the increased flexibility that results from stretching is supposed to prevent, researchers found. And the injuries found in the study typically happened within the muscle's normal range of motion, so stretching them would not have made a difference, Thacker said.

Other research has found that warmups, which increase blood flow through the muscle and make it more ready to respond to exercise, can reduce the risk of injury, Thacker said. Being in good shape also helps. Strength and balance training reduced injuries as well, he said.

People such as gymnasts and dancers might be exceptions, because their activities require great flexibility, so stretching might improve their performance, Thacker said.

In case future research does find a benefit, Thacker has no problem with athletes continuing to do gentle stretching. That's not the case with stretches that include sudden fast movements, called "ballistic stretches," which have been found in other studies to raise injury risks.

The study's findings make sense, said Mike Bracko, director of the Institute for Hockey Research in Calgary, Alberta. "We have done some work with hockey players showing flexibility is not an important variable," he said.

A strain typically happens when a muscle has to react suddenly to control an athlete's movement, Bracko said. An example would be a tear in a muscle in the back of a sprinter's leg as it contracts to keep the muscles in the front of the leg from moving the knee too far forward, he said.

Two other researchers said, however, that there may still be value in the stretches that coaches require, and athletes do.

Lynn Millar, a professor of physical therapy at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Mich., said her experience in treating people with injuries tells her that those who don't stretch may find they can't move their arms and legs as far as they used to, and this could set them up for injury.

"Unfortunately, a lot of us don't have a normal range of motion," Millar said.

Stephen Rice, director of the sports medicine center at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, N.J., said he values the experience of trainers and athletes.

Flexibility is an element of fitness, and stretching ought to make a person more flexible, Rice said. "I would say the conventional wisdom has a certain amount of wisdom to it," he added.


All the News Fit to 'Print'.

It was actually a busy weekend for once. Ha ha for once!

On Friday night, after restless late-night Internet wandering, I had an epiphany about my back injuries. I remember from the original injury way back in 1991 that the doctor said I injured my Lumbar muscles. After looking around I discovered there's a muscle specifically called quadratus lumborum. This muscle attaches the hip to the 12th rib. When injured, it becomes contracted, pulling my hip up and my rib cage down. This can cause trauma all the way up to my neck, and does. All the symptoms of this injury I have or do:

-- lean to one side while sitting to accommodate
-- difficulty taking in a full deep breath, which is the result of destabilization of the diaphragm from the 12th rib being pulled down. This has been enormously irritating.
-- straightened lordosis (no curve in the back, or, flat back)
-- piriformis muscle injuries from muscle taughtness. I have this big time.
-- sciatica from piriformis compression

So, basically, I now have a way to stretch and restrengthen this muscle, thirteen years later. I wasn't given much instruction when I originally injured it. So, this is all good and will help in the long run. I hope the recovery doesn't take another 13 years.

Then, next in the news, I cashed in some American Express membership points and bought a telescope. This is a beginner's telescope and will let me see the polar ice cap on Mars, the moon in extreme detail, rings on Saturn, and moons over Jupiter. I can also see binary stars and all the other mysterious things out there. Perhaps I will discover a new planet. I will call it Friedmanopeia XLTWF87Q. Now I can join my brother in his nocturnal wanderings. Together we will watch the celestial dance and feel extremely, extremely, really very small and insignificant. After all, the Earth is just a piece of nanodust in the immensity of space.

Then, last night Dawn and I watched a really good movie: The LadyKillers. It was really good! Tom Hanks was hilariously offensive and disgusting and the movie was just plain entertaining. I think my grandmother would enjoy it (if she can handle the bad language -- but I think she can). David would enjoy it as well. Or, possibly not because I tend to like movies he doesn't and vice versa. Except the ones that matter. On those we are tight.

So, today, I am finishing homework for class (but not at work), doing Laundry (which is evil), and writing an XSL FO program to test functionality of creating high-resolution transformation on images and to test very low resolution large images scaled down to smaller so they become effectively larger resolution in an attempt to handle sizing issues. Piece of cake, right?

Off to work!

Thursday, March 25, 2004


See, yesterday was about nothing. Today is about something.

Trouble is I have no inspiration at the moment and who wants to read about me trying to think of something to write just to fill out pages of a weblog? Creativity, it seems, is fickle. I believe they call this writer's block. All that is here for me to think about is inanities and nonsense.

I think you get the point by now. Perhaps tonight will inspire me more. I will be doing nothing. Or, more importantly, homework. Intention, it seems, is also fickle.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004


Absolutely nothing. More on this tomorrow.

Friday, March 19, 2004

The Dream is Never the Same.

I just woke up from a dream where my grandfather was alive and standing without the aid of a cane, walker or wheelchair. He showed up at the door of a conference room at work, one hand in one pocket, tall (I'd forgotten he was) and distinguished looking. I burst into tears of relief / grief in the dream and I remember marvelling at the sensation within the dream. I was not experiencing grief per se, but the shock at recognizing I could see him physically again.

We had a short conversation and I walked him to some elevators because he was leaving (I was now in a hospital or something). I kept hugging him and having these short fits of relief weeping. Every ounce of him was real and alive and I was just soaking that up. He kept saying the word "operationally" which I found incongruent with everything else. For example, he indicated the "University" -- which he indicated with a nod in one direction -- "where he taught, operationally". I can't help but think he meant some kind of psychic university where he reminded people who were alive that dead people are really alive as well, just focused in a different area.

Since Zayde's death, I've always felt like I could still communicate with him -- or with a deposit of his energy that stays around to make sure I am ok and to just catch up on the little things. He's totally aware of my recent accomplishments at work and is glad I am expressing my energy well in that arena. I think I can still almost see him physically sometimes -- out of the corner of my eye or the way another milumet person will do something. I see him a lot in my friends Patricia and Cynthia because they have very similar mannerisms, ideals, and virtues. I have very close affections and friendships to those two as well, in a very similar energetic manner to my grandfather.

So, my grief was particularly interesting in the dream because it really wasn't grief -- I don't consider him gone exactly. Just focused in different areas. The shock and emotion was from realizing I'd manifested a physical Zayde again who looks the way he should look and acts the way he should (although we both have the good beer bellies going on). The sharp "aliveness" of him was so real in the dream that I was relieved.

When I woke up, the contrast of it all became especially clear and pointed a very specific difference to me of the dream state. Upon waking, I noticed immediately my beliefs trying to change the dream into the logical, factual, and "real" -- that Zayde was dead, he was unable to walk before he died and I'd never see him physically again. And a funny thing happened in that twilight between dream and wakefulness. I realized dreams are a "real" as "reality" waking life is. In them, we can suspend -- or perhaps more accurately, accept -- beliefs about things so they have less power over me. So, I decided to accept the dream as very real as it was, even though in wakefulness it was somewhat of a stretch.

In the dream, it was perfectly legal for Zayde to be "back" and alive and well. In wakefulness it's perfectly legal to believe when we are "dead" we'll never see each other again. But, I think that veil between these duplicitous beliefs is falling -- in the dream world I am able to believe someone has died and I'll never see them again and in wakefulness I am able to believe and actually create a "dead" person again, perceptually. Living, breathing, focused again, if briefly, on the attention we share in both realms anyway.

Hey! I am hungry! What's for breakfast?

Thursday, March 18, 2004

A Tax Upon Both Your Houses

I turned my taxes over to our Tax Attorney on Monday. I can't stand taxes. Pardon the anti-government brief rant, but it's my right to bitch about taxes as an American citizen. I am sure I am taxed for that right.

It seems weird to me that we should have to pay this much tax on something the government had no hand in. The government didn't help me with anything this year, and so they are justified at taking out 30% of my income... how? Perhaps there are other things the taxes go into that cover me like roads or something. But, from my perspective, the unknowledgeable consumer, it seems like everyone is making money but me: I work to give 30% of my taxes to the government. I drive my car (which I paid tax on) which eats gasoline (which I pay tax on). Anything I buy (food, telephone services, etc) has some kind of tax on it. I bet if I took the time and calculated up all the different taxes I pay each month I would freak out.

And, God forbid you have a "small business". I did when I had my computer consulting company. But, apparently for the government "small business" means you are netting over $100,000 per year. Below that it's just a hobby. For hobbies, that earns you a merciless pounding of not only regular tax, social security tax (all of it, not employee matched), but Self-Employment tax.

Boy, take the American Dream of having your own business and they decimate you with taxes. I had to put in half of my netted income aside for taxes when I was in business for myself.

Someone was very smart when they guaranteed the "pursuit" of hapiness and not the actual happiness itself. Unless you are really good at business, taxes, and government, it seems a pipe dream.

I am not bitter. Not at all. I just wish the government had to come here and do some work with me to earn the right to my money. Or, if they are doing it in an indirect way they should let me know about it better because all it does is piss me off.

That was a very happy post. But, my blog only guarantees the pursuit of happiness. lol

Friday, March 12, 2004


I have absolutely nothing to write about right now. I've started 3 blog posts, each of which I have deleted because they were stupid. This is the effect of my current sugar coma. I don't drink many carbonated drinks but today a cherry Coke looked particularly tasty so I drank the whole thing. Now, I am stuck under the insulin haze of the afternoon and 2.5 servings of Coke and 3 oatmeal cookies (I bought them because they are healthy).

I guess I will write more later. I am on vacation for part of next week, so there will likely be time to write something. Knock on wood.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

All Spammed Up with Nowhere to Go

I received an astounding 180 e-mails today, all filled with delicious spam-poetry madness. 5 of the 180 e-mails were important to me. Blessed be my spam-filter software. I love you. I really do.

It's kind of funny to watch spam evolve, as spammers get more familiar at tricking the various filter software out there. They start using more common words in the "from" area. For example, I receive e-mails from "Hourlies Q. Rejoinder" and "Aphelions J. Whycherley", these being addresses the spam engine will find so utterly unique that it can't possibly be spam. But, the filters are figuring it out and there's less and less. Then there's the creative subject lines:

"Offshoore Acccount Within 24Hours, Michael BqBT"
"Ron got some thingamajig to pull on his weiner throughout the day, after a month he's biggr"

You gotta love e-mail subjects like that. Spam as entertainment, for real.

I also love the pictures that accompany SPAM e-mail, should my filter miss it (because it was from "Atacama R. Petting"). I won't put them here because they range from cheesy to pornographically disgusting. I find most amusing and contradictory ("Hot Teens want to meet you" shows pictures of mature Russian women). Thank goodness for the "This is Spam" button. Minimizes my time with these things.

Oh well. So much for Spam. I don't like it, but I don't want some agency monitoring it because then they get to decide what is right and wrong (much like the tv media these days) and then freedom of speech becomes freedom of my type of speech, not yours.

So, I am off to finish my Earl Grey tea and to listen to some old Tangerine Dream CDs as I ingest them into my Music library -- which, attention to the RIAA, is NOT shared on the Internet so you can bite me, stupid jerks.

It must have been a long day -- I remember it all hazy-like and it makes me think of sand (which gets all in my belly button when I go to the beach).

Have a good night. It's 11:11pm here. hrrrrgggghhhhhhhhh....

Monday, March 08, 2004

Monday, 8:30am

It's that magic time on Monday.

Time for a jolt of caffeine.

Don't forget your assault weapons.
*Note: To any agencies or persons monitoring this blog, my reference to assault weapons is purely comical in nature, intended to convey in exaggerated fashion the sense of dislocation that Monday brings. It is in no way intended to convey that I am a murderous terrorist, bent on the destruction of those whose beliefs I do not share or understand. Thank you.

Here's what has to say about caffeine. And here's what some guy on the web has to say about Monday.

Draw your own conclusions.

Here's mine. Monday is about the moon, which is about night time. Therefore, we should be sleepy, or, preferrably, asleep. Caffeine is required to keep us unnaturally awake. Clearly we need Monday as an official sleep day.

Stop laughing.

Friday, March 05, 2004

Friday, 5pm

It's that magic time on Friday.

Time for a Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster.

Don't forget your towel.
How to create a Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster:
The effect of a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster is like having your brains smashed out by a slice of lemon wrapped round a large gold brick.

1) Take the juice from one bottle of that Ol' Janx Spirit.
2) Pour into it one measure of water from the seas of Santraginus V.
3) Allow three cubes of Arcturan Mega-gin to melt into the mixture (it must be properly iced or the benzine is lost).
4) Allow four litres of Fallian marsh gas to bubble through it, in memory of all those happy Hikers who have died of pleasure in the Marshes of Fallia.
5) Over the back of a silver spoon float a measure of Qualactin Hypermint extract, redolent of all the heady odours of the dark Qualactin Zones, subtle sweet and mystic.
6) Drop in the tooth of an Algolian Suntiger. Watch it dissolve, spreading the fires of the Algolian Suns deep into the heart of the drink.
7) Sprinkle Zamphuor.
8) Add an olive.
9) Drink ... but ... very carefully ...

Thank you, Douglas Adams.


Many people I know are observing Lent right now. This, for them, is a time of self-reflection, recognition of repentance, and restriction. I've decided to observe an Umbilicus holiday (the first one) called "Lint".

Lint is about cleansing, unblocking the ways of nourishment, and the creation of divine mysterious objects. I'll explain. First, cleansing is important because otherwise your bellybutton fills up with Lint. A far cry from the physical object, this is metaphysical & spiritual Lint. This kind of Lint builds up from negative thoughts ("negative" meaning anything you don't feel positive about), unexpressed anger, and a lack of slurpees. Keep your spiritual belly button clean, please!!

Secondly, you need nourishment. Even though you are no longer in the womb, your belly button still functions -- it connects to another plane of consciousness where you receive mental and spiritual nourishment. This is why younger people are more free and unconcerned about things: they let their belly buttons show. They are uncluttered, open, accepting. Their trans-spatial galactic umbilicus is firmly connected to the plane of spiritual and mental fulfillment. Try freeing your belly button more. It will lead to goodness. And we men like seeing them.

Finally, we have the creation of divine objects. Since the belly button is connected to other planes, it is the natural pathway for divine energy. This energy, when merging with matter from our physical plane, sometimes forms special objects -- always misunderstood as "Lint". This is no Lint -- Lint exists only in the spiritual realm. This lint is the residual formation of divine spirit energy and the common energy of this world. Hence, they are divine spiritual objects. They should not be kept, but should be released into the world where they can accomplish their unique goals. Coveting these divine objects is grounds for psychotherapy.

Everyone, please enjoy Lint: the holiday of Umbilical Awareness.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

My Desk is Clean. My Plate is Clear. And other Nonsense.

Today, this morning, I accomplished the impossible: I cleaned my desk off at work. It's totally clutter free, bright and shiny. Please appreciate this moment to the fullest extent possible.

Spring cleaning came early this year... I've also been creating a space in my home office for more creative, leisurely endeavors, replacing the Borg-like appearance of computers, cables, devices, intimidating computer books and so on. I'm doing it so I can put in a small corner-chair there that will allow me the freedom to kick-back, drink tea, study for school, study for certifications, and nap comfortably with one of the omnipresent cats.

The cleaning is going quite well -- I started with the corner where the chair will go, near the window, put up a new picture that we had framed ages ago that was sitting behind the door waiting with anticipation to be put up. This all, of course, snowballed into a cleansing of the whole room, which led to the more terrifying prospect of cleaning up the miniscule but enormously filled closet. There was evil in there... pure, storage evil. Don't make me speak of it.

So, the office is mainly cleaned... the chair arrived early from the manufacturer and now I am tasked with finishing things up. But that's ok... cleaning has afforded me a mental freedom I did not anticipate. There are fewer distractions and it's amazing how many things one can put off doing when there are these perceptual other things that seem to need to be "done" or "cleaned" first before you can get to the next thing.

It's amazing how much crap I keep around. I'd make a very bad American Indian.

Monday, March 01, 2004

Chai Tea and Me

This was supposed to be the first post. Alas, I have been "off" the last few weeks.

I think about the quirky things people get known for. Aside from my quirky mind, I am known for my tea. You see, I drink tea made from whole leaf. Yes, at work -- as nuts as that is. Instead of mindlessly droning out to the coffee machine (ok, sometimes I mindlessly drone out to the coffee machine) I do the whole process of using a tea-ball to fill with tea, traipse over to the kitchenette/copier area and douse with almost hot water and steep, steep, steep.

Tea is about the navel. You Milumet people will know what I mean. It's about process, ritual, and groundedness. And, of course, it's important to choose the right tea to drink.

Never mind health benefits. Although they are important, I am all about the taste and the experience. My favorite tea right now is Chai tea. It's a black tea from India traditionally made with milk & honey. It's very rich and sweet and very spicy. Not hot spicy -- it has cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, star anise, pepper, and other spices light in it. It's very fragrant (especially in whole leaf form) and wonderful to drink!

Of course at work, I can't make it with milk & honey -- hot water and one cinnamon creamer and sugar is the best I can do. No matter -- the chai takes over. It's not like a cup of chai tea on the porch at home with Dawn or my friend Patricia, but it sure makes the day better.

In any case, I recommend Goldenmoon Tea for their Kashmiri Chai: it is most excellent and you can't find better customer service. Also, I recommend Tazo for the Tazo Chai they sell at various retailers.

Enough writing about chai. It's getting cold sitting on my desk. Must drink. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh....

Thursday, February 26, 2004

Moving around.

I republished the blog to the blog*spot site so the dates for my original posts are wrong. Deal with the change, ok?

Change Management

Yesterday was a very bad day. It was about change management.

Not that change management is bad, mind you. But, there is a lot of shifting going on. I started with a dream of a co-worker dying. He has cancer in waking-life and all options has failed. Despite his eternal optimism, the end may be near and I woke up early to the sounds of sirens, cat noise, and imagery of me writing a sad, useless eulogy.

I got grouchy from there. It was too early and I had a day filled with 8 meetings. I got grouchy at friends and obviously didn't want to be around people. So, I suffered through the day.

At a particularly low point I realized all this is about change management. Death is a form of change, and the process we are going through right now at work is about a dramatic change in the way we do things, and I have recently become a Manager(tm), so there's a change. I've noticed I resist change just a little bit. Apparently it's stressful to me.

It has to do with the unknown, with fears: beliefs that I won't measure up or won't do what is needed or will affect many people badly. It's easy to say "to Hell" with what other people think of me, but I don't really believe it. So, the need to be accepted is about validation and that means lack of self-confidence...right? Yeah, probably. See how I needed your input?

So, if I take it further: what is lack of self-confidence about? Lack of self-acceptance, of who I am, of what I do. Not an absence of it, but a lack of it at 100%. It's a familiar belief-pattern to accept my unworthiness at things: I automatically assume if I've never done it before I won't be good at it simply from a lack of experience standpoint. But isn't that where talent and intuition come in? I suppose I discount those.

Obviously some change management is needed in my belief structures. Change doesn't mean elimination, but does mean acceptance. Perhaps it's time to accept something is there that is valuable because it's exactly who and what I need to be right now, even if it's not where I want to be. That's not abstract or anything.

The stress is the discord of my core energy letting me know I don't like something about myself. Usually I, and we as a people, stop at recognizing there's an emotion being communicated. The trick appears to be recognizing the emotion and accepting what is behind it: the reasons and beliefs.

Change is good; it's the lifeblood of existence. It shouldn't be stressful. I think I'll work at changing that, now that I know what to look for.

Ok then.

Learning Languages

I'm learning a computer language today. For some reason, it's easy to forget that a computer language is just like learning an audible language, like Spanish or French. I realized, living in San Antonio now for 18 years that I should probably learn Spanish, and am looking at a very beginners course. In the mean time, I am learning XML, a structured computer language used for transferring information between disparate systems.

This makes me wonder what I am really getting at. Hmmmm let's analyze the thoughts there: desire to learn new languages must mean a desire to extend myself and to communicate in different ways. Perhaps I am realizing that the old ways of communicating are lost and new ways must be etched out to shake up the cobwebs of thought in my head.

I guess I can even relate it back to what's going on in the world today (from my perspective): TV is going downhill -- I mean, I think it's stupid to watch shows like The Apprentice and anything to do with Reality TV makes me hurl just a little bit. They're so dumb and so unReal. What are we wasting our time for? What happened to the ideal of educational tv? The Reality is that we are now catering to the dumb masses for the sake of ratings and money. Epiphany! Television networks as infomercials themselves.

I guess it all is moot -- it's up to me to choose what I like or don't like. I don't think I judge other people for watching these shows, but the fact they are in my visual experience means I have some help in creating them and I can't help but wonder why and wonder I get that "all is lost & out of control" feeling when these tv shows come on. When did we decide to make a profit on how vulnerable, greedy, and gullible we can all be? And why is it so interesting to see how vulnerable, greedy, and gullible other people will be? Is it a subtle desire to think we're better than everyone else? What language are we really trying to communicate in?

Well, food for thought I guess. I'm going back to XML namespaces and applications. Maybe I'll start up so Spanish soon. Maybe I'll just have a taco for lunch.

Mars-like Sun from Earth

This morning was very foggy on the way to work. There's a place where I turn the corner at 281 and 1604 where I am pointing due East and the sun is always in my eyes. Today, it was foggy so it looked reddish orangeish. I could see the disc of the sun clearly -- it was diffused enough that I could look at it without destroying my retinas. I had a brief irrational confusion where I thought it was the moon and I thought, "oh look, the moon... I mean the sun... is full."

I drank two beers last night, and ate a hamburger and fries. I didn't follow it up with my usual water to help flush the system out. My brain is foggy this morning and I have a strong desire to put my head down on my desk at work today. But, I have to give a 9am presentation on the technology of a database we use at work. I better be clever and funny or it's my ass.

I also have 8 meetings today, one going through lunch. Then, it's the weekend. It's not supposed to be foggy this weekend. I'm getting the oil changed in my car. I also have to study a lot.

This is really boring. I must be in tune with the fog. So maybe I will get some coffee and check back later and write something that has more caffeine in it and isn't related to work. This blog is about me, not my work. I am not my work. I hope I am not my work. I think I am a Mountain Laurel tree.


What it means

\Um`bi*li"cus\, n. [L. See Umbilic.] 1. (Anat.) The depression, or mark, in the median line of the abdomen, which indicates the point where the umbilical cord separated from the fetus; the navel.

2. (Gr. & Rom. Antiq.) An ornamented or painted ball or boss fastened at each end of the stick on which manuscripts were rolled. --Dr. W. Smith.

3. (Bot.) The hilum.

4. (Zo["o]l.) (a) A depression or opening in the center of the base of many spiral shells. (b) Either one of the two apertures in the calamus of a feather.

5. (Geom.) (a) One of foci of an ellipse, or other curve. [Obs.] (b) A point of a surface at which the curvatures of the normal sections are all equal to each other. A sphere may be osculatory to the surface in every direction at an umbilicus. Called also umbilic.

Getting Started

Those of you who know me know that I don't have much of a belly button. This, from my umbilical hernia surgery August 29, 2001. It seemed relevant to create a blog about the psycho-spiritual implications of losing one's bellybutton. This also allows my topic range to be quite expansive.

To begin with, I am at work, which provides very little nurturing. Nourishment and things generally associated with the bellybutton are somewhat absent at the moment -- it's all drive, push, succeed, climb, protect, etc... but, well, that's work I suppose.

Don't worry, explanations of the mysteries of the umbilicus will begin soon. But, I've got to get to work in the mean-time.


Everthing is bright and glistening. A new blog is born again, knowing what it will ultimately become. For the 533rd time, the initial breath is drawn, and then sleep, just for a while.