Continuing with my fasting, here's what I consumed today:

1 wrapped chocolate candy thing; the most ready source of glucose available at the time.
1 large cup of green tea, no sugar (continuing with the antioxidant trend, though I may have to cut back on it because I don't want to get addicted to caffeine again)
1 small sandwich containing nothing but bread, lettuce, peppers, etc. See commentary.
1 cup of ice tea (the good, not-made-from-corn-syrup kind)

Suprisingly, I've gotten a couple comments on my fast in the catbox, which suprised me because a) I figured I was largely invisible to everyone on everything that isn't an editor and b) I didn't realize anybody actually read daylogs.

So, a bit of explanation to my fasting fans out there:
In the last couple months, I've been alternatingly depressed and just plain bored, and lately I've been turning to food whenever I became bored or sad. I'm vegetarian, so it's not like I was diving into pepperoni pizzas from the local grease oven, but I have been eating a bit much for me lately. What's worse is, I haven't really been enjoying it; food tasted bland and boring, even when it wasn't. Briefly, after getting an idea from an Orson Scott Card book, I tried meditating on the tastes of food while I was consuming them, but that only worked for a little while. In stark contrast, I ate two pieces of plain whole wheat bread before I went to bed last night, and they tasted amazing.

So, in short, this is a fast to reset my appetite and put myself in better touch with what my body really wants to eat, so that I can hear the difference between an actual food need and a craving born from boredom or depression.

As for why I'm eating a little during the fast: traditionally, fasts have been anywhere from bread and water diets to giving up of all food, sex, conversation, entertainment, etc. I'm going for a low-impact fast. Rather than starving myself to the point of ketone release, I'm keeping my blood glucose levels just high enough to keep my brain and CNS fed. This is particularly important to me, because I'm potentially a borderline diabetic. So, perhaps this is a rediculously low-calorie diet (somewhere around 100-300 calories a day) and not a fast. But I'm sticking to carb-heaving fare, and not arguing semantics.

Surfing the 'For Sale' ads at work today, this one really caught my eye. The name has of course been removed to protect the innocent and truly stupid individual behind this, and this is a direct cut'n'paste to preserve the text. Any spelling mistakes in bold are his.

1977 model, Datsun 120Y. Extensive modifications including 427ci Big block chev, 6/71 GM supercharger, bullet proof drive gear due dyno test to 870hp at wheels.
Tubbed rear end to house 335/30's P Zero goodyears. Nitrous direct injection. Drag Shute. Custom paint and interior. Engineers certificate and N.S.W. registered. Eastern Creek 8.79@ 312kph.
Good for responsible saturday night with friends!
Selling due to guess what? 10 years loss of licence due 243kph on Qantas Drive. Sorry officer I'm late for work.
Price $53000 o.n.o (Lamborgini diablo 0-200kph 9secs, my dato does it in 5secs flat). contact only by e-mail.

I showed this to the rest of the guys in my department, including my boss. None of us could resist: we contacted the person involved, and asked for a copy of the police report to prove it. One fax later, there it was:

243 Kilometres Per Hour in an 80 Kilometre zone

Ye gods.

He also provided the Engineers certificate, and some time-trials, proving his 0-200kph in 5 seconds claim.
And some people wonder why I'm afraid to drive in Sydney?

A bit of information for non-Australians: A Datsun 120Y is, well, a shitbox car. They're little 4-cylinder economy models, mass produced, cheap and mostly rust-ridden 24 year old cars, which mostly sell for around $500 - $1000 for a good specimen. Why on earth anyone would want to fit one with this major league gear is beyond me, but it sure as hell makes for an interesting story!

Well its time to start your engines in Bristol, TN today.

We are now the 2nd largest city in the state, and the most densely populated city in the state. Another lesser known fact, we also hold the record for the most densely populated drunks in a city, and most rebel flags in a city :)

Everyone loves when the races come to town, especially when you get work stories like Psych Fire and Emergency Room Drunk. But other than that, you have all the drunk women standing on the side of the road flashing everyone, the huge number of beer trucks running on the interstate, the cops on the side of the road not giving a damn, and god knows what other alcohol-induced enjoyment will happen.

Seeing the race to the campgrounds reminded me of something I saw on TLC. It reminded me of the time they filmed all the Christians flocking to Jerusalem for easter, just as the rednecks flock to Bristol for their religious holiday... The Night Race.

Writeups I've updated today:

What a day! Our Internet connection went down. After about half an hour on the phone, I finally found a human being (likely a phone firewall) at Intermedia who said that it was a backbone problem and that they did not have any guesses on when it would be back.

That's not what I wanted to hear.

All week I've been struggling with Verizon to get the New Port Richey Public Library's WAN connection working properly -- it's been yo-yoing. Finding out that we were completely off the network was maddening.

I mean, shit, I couldn't even node to blow off some steam...

So then I got to spend all morning calling our customers personally, explaining, apologizing, listening to their responses. After the first dozen calls I knew it was going to be a bad morning.

As you're reading this, you can guess how it turned out: they eventually got their act together and restored our service. But let me tell you, it was ugly this morning.

But hey, four more hours and I get to go home and be consoled by my girlfriend. We're living together now. (Last time I posted a daylog I might not have even met her...)

One more good thing: I've recently sold another crossword puzzle. Check Netscape or UClick this Saturday, August 25, 2001; it's not only the day of my crossword, but also my 27th birthday and Linux's 10th. I'm looking forward to the party.

(Now if only I could skip all the ]laundry] and cleaning and skip straight on to the booze...)

Day two of my new diet/exercise plan. It's not too bad, actually, the exercise has been okay, I think I will adjust to that. Going hungry sux, however. That part is driving me nuts. It would be a lot simpler if I wasn't so damn hungry. This is definitely going to drive me to a nutritionist. I have to bear in mind that it is only going to feel this way for a few days, my stomach will shrink a bit, and it will get easier.

I have been slacking too much since coming back from vacation, and I'm realizing my boss is due back on Monday, and I haven't done half of what I planned to do in his absence. Yikes. So - it's major catch up time here.

This did not continue as it started.
Today was my first day at my new job. I was quite daunted. So much so that I feel that the after-feeling I have now needs to be remembered. I never intended to write a day-log.

It wasn't so bad at all. It was ok in fact. I know that it's only for a month or so until I go to Dublin to University (and beyond). But it is the first 'real' job I've had. I've had other small less structured 'under the counter' sort of jobs before, but not a proper nine to five one.

The other staff were really nice, and the person I'm replacing showed me the ropes a bit, as did the other guy there. I'm absolutely wrecked now, I'd forgotten how tiring actually working is. That, contrasted with the utter nothingness I've been engaging in as of late, made it a very long day.

I'm pretty scared about going to Dublin too. It's such a new huge change. It's going to completely rip my life around. Much like this time six months ago. 23rd February. That day is etched in my memory forever. I don't know whether or not I should say why. I half don't believe anyone else will ever read this properly, certainly not seriously or with a compassionate eye. This day 6 months ago, one of my two best friends, Philip Murphy, killed himself. That was difficult to type, very difficult. It's strange how you can go through so much 'coping' and still not be able to face up to the fundamentals.

I don't really remember the last 6 months. I saw someone on the street today that looks just like he did. And I thought it was him for a minute. Which was scary. They've all been a bit of a blur, until the last month or so. I've only just begun to feel human again. I'm sure that sounded really pretentious and stupid. But that's how I felt. Like some mechanical pretending machine. I only really feel like I'm getting back some choice into my decisions now.

I found a day-log by Marty here once that shocked me. It was written the day of the funeral. It really frightened me, because he was talking about the people who were really close to Phil, and how it must be affecting them. I don't think he ever really considered that I might read that. I can't imagine that he did.

I really am ranting. I'm going to stop before it degenerates into mindless (even more so perhaps) drivel. I'm sorry if you got this far, whoever you are. Whoever I am. Sorree.

Funny, this is at least the third daylog today about food, appetite, and diet, in some way or another. I, too, have joined the diet bandwagon, which is kind of stupid considering most people already did consider me on a "diet" (being that I'm vegetarian and to many non-vegetarians, vegetarianism seems like extreme deprivation). However, I realized that I'm creeping out of my early twenties and soon enough my metabolism will undergo a drop, and my ass's size will rival Texas.

So, I figure it can't hurt to go on a diet of some sort. I started just eating less a few weeks ago, but it seemed I was prone to just ignoring my stomach until it shut up and then not actually eating anything until I felt weak. Which can't be good. So I decided there should be a healthy way to eat, not be too hungry, lose weight, and not accidentally starve myself. I had never been on a diet before ever in my life (unless you count my vegetarianism, which I don't), and so this was new territory for me.

Some book I looked at two days ago informed me that at my height (4'11"), I should weigh NINETY-THREE POUNDS at a medium build. Even for the big build, I would be considered at least fifteen pounds overweight. (I weighed about 115 when I decided to go on a diet.) What the hell? I looked at the picture of the author on the cover of the book. She, predictably, had no tits. ::sigh:: Strangely enough, the book said you should never eat less than 1,200 calories a day. I had set my mark at 1,000.

So, that's where I'm at now. Eating about 1,000 calories a day. I never counted calories before and I feel extremely lame, and a couple of my friends think I'm extremely lame for caring about what I eat since most of them don't care, but I'm just trying it out for a couple weeks until I get something of a sense of what I can have when without going too far away from the mark.

This is difficult, because I want to make sure I get all my nutrients, being that I already have a problem getting enough protein. I'm a super-picky eater as well, and simply will not eat certain vegetables, pastas, breads, and mixes of things. (I am one of those people who would rather no two types of food touch each other.) Combine this with my complete exclusion of meat plus my dislike of tofu and you get "up the dieter's creek." I am screwed.

But I am managing. Luckily for me, I eat cheese, eggs, milk, and the cool Morningstar Farms soy products. These I like. They are my only source of protein. Then I load it up with low-calorie breads and veggies, and toss out my soda, and there you have it...approximately 1000 calories a day.

Here is today's menu:

½ cup low-fat plan yogurt: 65 calories (tasted like ass)
1 whole grapefruit: 40 calories
8 Wheat Thins crackers: 65 calories

1½ cup salad (mostly iceberg lettuce): 15 calories
20 baby carrots: 35 calories
1 cup raw mushrooms: 20 calories
Dressing for the salad (akin to Thousand Island):
2 tablespoons Lite Miracle Whip: 70 calories
1 tablespoon Heinz Ketchup: 40 calories

1 whole wheat English muffin: 120 calories

1 loaf pita bread: 140 calories
2 tablespoons hummus: 60 calories
1 scrambled egg: 100 calories

The total there is 770 calories, which leaves me 230 to play with today. If I don't eat anything else, I can have a small glass of Coke or juice or just a piece of the yummy honey cake I baked last night (I gave half of it to my friend Joe). Check out the recipe for honey cake if you want. Or I could put some pasta sauce on my English muffin or have extra Wheat Thins. I found out I love Wheat Thins and that plain yogurt is really revolting.

If anyone's got any suggestions for low-cal food they love or want to share any info with me I'd be happy to receive. :)

The usual, boring, and terribly short Thursday route. Of all the routes I run, this is my least favourite. Today started as nothing but more of what I hated. Warm and humid, and then it started raining. If there's anything I hate more than this Thursday route, it's doing this route in the rain.

My first stop after the rain started was a small little store, tucked at the bottom of a hill. Halfway between Loysville, PA, and Blaine, PA, this is the only convenience store around for miles, and this may very well be the only store some ever see. The place is owned by an old lady, whom I'd never met before. Apparently, at least from what I've deduced, she's homebound. There's a sign on the door advertising for part time work, helping at the store, and caring for an elderly female. I put two and two together a while ago, but I'd never known if I was right. Always I was greeted by a middle-aged woman, but rarely the same one.

As I walk in the door, I remind myself that I hate this place. They never take much ice, maybe 25 bags a week in hot summer weather. "This place is worthless," I whisper under my breath. This morning something was different. As I checked "my" ice, I got the funny feeling that no one was there. After spending a minute or two rotating ice, noticing that fewer than 15 bags had been sold, I finally decided no one really was not there. Taking advantage of the squeaky wooden floors, I walked around a bit, looking for the loudest spots possible. Nothing. Nobody came. The loudest spot turned out to be right next to the crates of freshly delivered milk. I'd seen the milk man down the road a few miles, so these had been sitting here about 10 minutes. "Somebody really needs to put this stuff away," I muttered, still squeaking floors. I just wanted to let them know I'd be back next week since I wouldn't be delivering any this week, and then get the hell out of there. I thought about just leaving. Something told me not to.

Behind the counter, there's a doorway which leads to a kitchen area. The store also serves as the house for the owner. I peered into the doorway. Nobody there. Just leave man, it's no biggie. Instead, "Hello, is anybody here?" hops out of my mouth and around the corner. I hear noises almost immediately. Slowly the noises come closer. An old lady materializes from around the corner, breathing heavy, and moving slower than Stanford S. Kingsborough (and that's another story, I'm afraid).

"Hi. Umm. I'm just the ice man. Ya'all won't be needing any ice this week, so I'll be back next week. Alright?"


"No help here at all right now, huh?"

"No help at all, today," she managed, between coughs.

"Oh. Umm..." Mentally I sized up her physical abilities, as my mind wandered over to those crates of milk. She was never going to be able to do it. "You mind if I put this milk away for you?"

"That would be wonderful."

And wonderful it was. I was working on somebody else's clock, so I hurried, but I was thorough. I made sure all the handles and labels were facing the same way. I rotated stock. I checked expiration dates. I ran out of room. She let me know about the secret refrigeration area underneath the fruit. The rest of the milk fit in there, along with the several gallons of iced tea that were also in the crates. 12 crates in all. I remembered where I'd last seen empty milk crates and proceeded to carry them across the store, out the door, stacking them neatly under the window. This task accomplished, I joined the old lady back in the store, who was now behind the counter.

"Anything else I can do for you before I leave?"

"No, thank you. Here, take this."

She pushed a golden dollar across the counter, towards me.

My mind pushed back thoughts of how stupid those dollars are, how much I hated them, and how many postal workers should be drawn and quartered for pushing the damn things on all their customers. This was the shinest golden dollar I would ever see in my life and I was not about to tarnish it. I cupped my hand over the coin, slowly inching it back towards the lady, across the smooth, heavily worn surface of the solid oak counter. "No, thank you. It was my pleasure. I'll be back next week. Have a good one." Gently I lifted my hand, leaving the dollar in its place, and leaving the store as quickly as possible.

Oh, bother. Now, I can't wait to go back.



p.s. October 23th, 2001: I ran this route today, for the last time. I quit this job (although I have since returned) and today was my last day of work. This stop was supposed to be skipped on the route, but I stopped anyway. I am not one to waste time on an ice route, even on my last day on the job, but I stopped anyway. Something said, "Stop here." So I did. Most of me wishes I had never stopped, but I stopped anyway.

Ever seen a stranded motorist and kept on going? Maybe you felt guilty about it for the next few miles, maybe you wondered what would happen to that person. But I dare you to try to think of a specific instance where this happened to you. You can't. You know it's happened, but you don't know when.

Be thankful. Not knowing can be a wonderful thing. Eventually, you'll stop thinking about it, and stop wondering about not knowing, and you will move along in wonderful, unintentionally ignorant bliss.

The store took no ice that day. The store has not taken ice since, because it no longer exists. Ten years from now, people won't even remember its name. Bishop's Grocery.

POOF! Gone.

At least she died in her sleep. She doesn't have to know that her store, her life, doesn't even have a sign out front any longer.

The fourth day of school. Only one (boring) class today, then work, where they had nothing for me to do, so I punched out and went home. Proceeded to skip my guitar lesson, toke, draw a bunch of squiggly lines for two hours, then fall asleep. Woke up because my mother called to ask if I'd see them this weekend for the annual celebration of my entrance into the world, and then I sat on the couch for 15 minutes with the creeping sensation of my candy-ass, self-induced depression returning. Too dark and too drained to read, so I rode my bike for 15 minutes, winding up at a computer terminal and logging onto E2 for the first time in a while.

I feel so much creative energy, so much power when I'm not depressed, and never let myself realize I'm not using the energy to any productive end until I've been alone for more than a few hours for the third or fourth time in the space of a week, when my mind is ripe for entertaining self-deprecating thoughts. And then I wonder, "Well, what is there left to express, anyway? We all know everything we need to about the human condition from our day-to-day experiences." And if there's no reason to be creative, then all we have left to live for is to seek the greatest density of pleasant experiences.

By the time I get deep enough into my bullshit meaning of life monologues (the above is a synopsis of the random gunk that made up my interpersonal communication for about an hour or so) that I start coming up with conclusions that contradict my common sense, I realize that some part of my brain is malfunctioning, and my head quickly descends from the clouds. Now all I can do is laugh at myself for spending all those precious minutes being so closed-minded.

Please allow me to gloat:

Having recently broken up with my boyfriend, I'm amazed at how not all busted up I am. Back out on the 'scene'again and actually glad to be there, had a fabulous weekend, which included going home with a beautiful 21year old DJ on Saturday night! Ugh! The ugh! is not about the 21yrold but about me: I'm so easy! He came up to me, chatted me up a bit and then asked me if he could kiss me. Eyes big as saucers and full of gratitude, I said yes! Well, he cracked the code right then and there (I'm going to have to re-set it now-- I think I had it plastered across me forehead Saturday night). Stopped at a gas station on the way to his flat for the raincoats and indulged in mutual gratification. In my defense, I can only say that he told me he had been watching me since we'd gotten to the Akropolis and told me that I looked 'vzru<š>j<í>c<í>' (something like exciting or thrilling in Czech-- whew!). But part of the problem was what happened Friday night. I met an absolutely beautiful MAN- NOT a boy- from Austria at this party Valentina took me to- gaaah! so sexy and manly-like, tall, grew up in the mountains and directs film, blond, well-dressed but slightly sleazy-looking like a film director should be, intelligent and genuine, flirting without being slimey, testosterone spewing from his every pore, really a man (did I say how manly he was?)man, man, man-oh-man. Got my engine all kinds of revved-up. And I CHARMED him, how I did it, idunno. I charmed that man and I was so full of myself for charming him that I had to leave. Putta spell on him, hit the road, and then took the edge offa my apple-tight with misterDJ-21. One thing that really hit home was that 21yrolds are not very fun to talk to; there's not a whole lot going on in their heads yet. Klaus was much more interesting. Let's see if he comes and gets me.

Lord help me, I think I'm boy crazy. Every man I meet is the most yummy-looking creature until I meet the next one. I never knew there were so many gorgeous men in Prague. I remember once complaining to David that there aren't so many good-looking men in Prague, and he said that there were, but they only come out on certain days. I think they made a collective agreement to stay out all summer this year! But I gotta watch myself. After I charmed Klaus, I couldn't stop charming zee men... I need to be responsible for my sexuality(what the hell does that mean, exactly?) instead flinging it wildly around ensnaring the unsuspecting. I only occasionally realize that I have power as a woman (usually in retrospect), and this weekend it smacked me in the face hard: LOOK AT WHAT YOU GOT, BABY! I think I even accidentally almost picked up a woman the other night, if you can believe that! I do feel just the tiniest bit guilty about going home with that kid because I wasn't interested in anything but having my ego massaged (assuaged?) which is probably why I blew off the REAL guys I met on Saturday for him, but it was only one indulgence and as long as I'm not doing it every weekend I think I can still call myself a good kid.

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