GSCs – Monkey on my Back

A few minutes ago, for a moment I thought I was coming down with something.

I felt woozy and sick to my stomach. My husband has a bad cold. I thought it got me too.

Then I realized I was coming OFF of something.

Girl Scout Cookies and Computer Crash
Girl Scout Cookie Overdose

Earlier today I considered crushing up and inhaling some thin mints because the standard delivery system of hand to mouth just didn’t seem to be cutting it. (Not really, but it sounds funny, doesn’t it?) Then I thought about this article I read recently about the addictive quality of junk-food.

I’ve never been a slave to nicotine, but I could definitely mainline some Samoas.

While I recover with some Tagalongs – I can’t help but consider “one wafer thin mint.”

One wafer thin mint

And the possible very disgusting result….

I gave myself an inch…I took a mile…

Okay, okay, I took two.

Nearly Two Months.

It’s crazy how time can slip by. February is always a crazed month for us, but once I let myself off the hook for the daily blogging habit, it was tough to find a new lower intensity groove.

That’s not to say it hasn’t been time well spent, and that I haven’t made real progress or stuck to my stated intentions:

  1. Move more.
  2. Eat less.
  3. Write more.

Number One – Move more

  • I’ve continued to hoop, and can now do some pretty sweet tricks, while still proudly embracing my right as a beginner to drop the hoop often and loudly.
  • During the month of February I shoveled a full-on shit-ton of snow. Come on, I still can’t decide where I stand officially on the swearing in my own blog, but for anyone who lived thru the Snowpacalypse, there is no other measurement than “shit-ton” to describe the amount of shoveling we had to do
  • I was already doing a lot of walking, but we enjoyed several weeks of “rent-a-dogs” during the month of March, so the additional early morning and late night “I hope we make it through the night” walks really chalked up the extra activity points
  • Foxes in Boxes Burn Extra Calories

Number Two  – Eat Less

  • smaller portions and
  • less junk food
  • less often
  • combined with Number One for a net loss of 13 pounds! Oh yeah! Although it’s kind of gross and embarrassing that I had that much to loose in the first place, and about that much more I’d like to. I’m really loving this.

Number Three – Write more

  • This has taken on an interesting twist.
  • Where I assumed this would mostly mean blogging, the last couple of months has indeed included a LOT of creative and persuasive writing skills.
  • I’ve written some of the most fantastic email communications and invitations to an amazing host of folks, including THE Craig of Craigslist, to create a totally amazing lineup for TEDxPotomac, an independently organized TED event as part of the TEDx initiative, which will take place on May 20, 2010, at the George Washington University Bett’s Theatre.

I happened to meet the lead organizer, Patrick Smith, COO of Market Hardware, a few days before the first organizing meeting for TEDxPotomac. On that first snowy Saturday in December I raised my hand and volunteered to organize some information on the website. Somehow since then I became the lead curator and Chair of the Presenters Committee.

While flying by the seat of my pants and treading in the deep waters of many things I’ve never done before, I’ve met some amazing people. The event may be just one day in May, but these months have enriched my life for years to come. I know I’ve added many new lifelong friends to my circle.

And these friends – some new, some renewed – have inspired and energized me in so many ways. So I find myself, once again here at the literal eleventh hour racing to beat my self imposed deadline of midnight before this next month is up. 😉

My daughter just informed me that I gave out lots of kisses and have been very smiley today. I tell her it’s because I’m happy with all the work I’ve been doing, that hard work makes me happy, because hard work pays off.

But, of course, it was actually really easy.

As easy as 1, 2, 3.

Give or take an inch, or a mile, or a month. Or two.

Our postman NEVER rings twice

Over the years this has caused considerable consternation on a number of occasions – missed Christmas presents on Christmas eve, a birthday crumb cake from Grandma inedible by the time it was redelivered.

Though today was no exception, as I flew down the stairs at nearly literal break-neck speed, I managed to catch our guy just as he was turning to leave since he’d stopped to fill out the “must sign” delivery slip.

What could it be? It was addressed to my husband. It was a small, non-descript, white cardboard mailer. A memory-chip? A small cable for one of his techie shenanigans?

As I flipped the envelop back and forth to decipher the source, a whiff of spicy cinnamon. Instant recognition. The scent of a fireball jawbreaker to be exact, accompanying this year’s journey to…Metropolis.

Burning Man 2010 Ticket - Metropolis
Do you have your Golden Ticket?

Special favors come in 31 flavors

When I hit “Publish” on this one, I will have met my goal of 31 posts in 31 January 31 posts in 31 daysdays. I’m very proud of myself. And truly awed and inspired by those of you who have been doing this for many years.

Thank you to those who have sent good vibes and good feedback. I’m so grateful for your support.

The nature of the blog has also served well to keep me motivated to stay engaged with other intentions for 2010 – I’ve continued to Move More, and even Eat (a little) Less, resulting in net loss of a few pounds, and supporting a general net gain in positive life satisfaction. I like this math.

Even though February is a short month, which might make daily posting seem easier after a 31er, I’m going to ratchet down the posting days this month to just 4-5 posts per week on weekdays. This should allow me to focus on both casting my net a little further via other social media and improving the quality of my posts.

One of the more surprising revelations this month has been the tremendous amount of spam comments I’ve received. In fact, I don’t believe I’ve received but one legitimate comment. Although, I’m actually quite fascinated by spam and spammers and their relentless creativity for finding new ways into our inboxes, just once I’d like to check those comments and find something real.

So this leads to my “special favor” to ask of you: If you are true friend or fan, or if you even just happened to “stumbleupon” this post and you happen to know the name of the band and/or song from which I’ve borrowed the title of this post – please leave the answer with a real “comment” for me.

It would be a sweet and beautiful Karmic Coincidence if I could get 31.

Yipes! I’m late for Hoop class, and it’s a bit of a walk. I must publish and run.

Me, Stan Lee and B

I’m working on a longer post that’s not quite ready.

I’m in a quandary over whether I should allow myself to skip today and post two tomorrow because my BFBeth is coming to town, and I must leave toute suite.

I’m electing to reprogram this apparent Kobayashi Maru and make a simple post of one of our last days together here in DC in 2008 before she up and left me for some bright lights and a big city.

For the nine years we’ve known each other, we’ve celebrated our birthday together eight times. We had an awesome surprise on this last one. Look who was sitting next to us.

Me Stan Lee and B
B. Stan Lee and Me!

I’m not one to like to bother the celebrity types when they’re out living their lives, but I’m a huge Stan Lee fan.

He could not have been more kind or gracious. Good karma.

Does this look infected to you?

While looking for a 5 minute song to hoop-and-heat by today (It’s freezing again here in DC!), I scrolled past a number of faves from a group I was introduced to last summer.

One of my favorite moments from Burning Man 2009 was arriving at the Opulent Temple to the spectacular madness of Infected Mushroom. (Warning to my webby friends, on this side of the looking glass, this site is a usability nightmare. Why do music groups and DJs insist on weird for weirdness sake?)

I’ve been listening to and dancing to the electronic/DJ music scene for a number of years now, so I was completely blown away by their live performance – vocals, guitars and all. And after four days in the desert at that time, I thought I might actually Becoming Insane myself.

Opulent Temple Photo Burning Man
Insanely Opulent Temple

I didn’t choose an Infected Mushroom song for my “tea-dance” today because, like a lot of electronica songs, most were longer than my 5-minute water boiling window would allow.

However, I was super psyched to be reminded of this smile producing Karmic Coincidence:

  • Infected Mushroom’s breakout album title – Vicious Delicious!

Put it in your pantry with your cupcakes

I’ve been working on squeezing extra bits of physical activity into my days to combat my disease. If you’re trying to do the same, here’s an idea:

It takes about 5 minutes to boil water for a cup of tea at my house these days in the depths of winter when the water comes from the tap just warm enough to be considered liquid.

If you have your handy-dandy hula-hoop, uhm, handy, hoop it up until the whistle blows.

According to my handy-dandy DirectLife gadget, I burned about 25 calories during those five minutes. (I repeated the five minute test a few times to get an average read.) Sometimes it’s just enough to complete the goal for the day.

Philips DirectLife goal
127% for the day

Unfortunately, I also listened to Mrs. Robinson while I hooped. Now I can’t get cupcakes out of my head.

If I walked all the way to one of these places, do you think I could squeeze a cupcake in my pantry without regretting it?

I’m still partial to cupcake pioneer Warren Brown and his CakeLove New German Chocolate.

Oh, look all in-store purchases of Lemon Coconut cupcakes proceeds go to the Red Cross for Haiti.

Cake Love donates to Red Cross with purchase of Lemon Coconut cupcakes
A delicious way to help Haiti

I know where I’m going now.

How about you? Coo, coo, ca-choo.

Have you kissed your IT Department lately?

No matter where you work, live or love, the job of the ITG (IT Guy or Gal) is usually a pretty thankless job.

When you’re a small, start-up “homepreneur”, intentionally or not, if you’re lucky enough not to be wearing that hat yourself, the ITG is probably your husband, wife, partner or roommate. If that’s the case, chances are at some point you’ve experienced moments of domestic discontent when technology at the ol’ SoHo isn’t quite as quick and easy As Seen On TV.

Perhaps, you’ve secretly wished you could either fire the entire department or hire a customer service intermediary trained not to mock, smirk, roll-eyes or talk to you like you’re a child. Well, the VP of IT @viciousyoga, who has held the position for almost twenty years, has undeniably earned his tenure, so firing is out of the question. 😉 However, during a recent prolonged and bumpy total Snow Leopardization of the Hoffman-Ingber household, there were definitely a couple of days when I would have paid a significant sum to avoid a few of these scenes with my own beloved resident Nick Burns.

That’s why we both laughed so hard while we watched the most recent episode of our new favorite TV show, Modern Family. (You can watch the full episode there on However, ironically, if you’re on a Mac and use Safari and have survived your own Snow Leopardizing, does not support OSX 10.6 at the moment, but Firefox will work.)

Snow Leopard not supported by
Raining on the Snow Leopard Parade

Like Phil Dunphy, the love of my life has recently expressed an interest in purchasing a souped up home theater. Since I can see 2 broken DVD players, an AIWA mini stereo without functional CD or cassette, a VCR (that works!) from 1985 and about 7 remote controls from where I sit, I can only imagine how much fun that project will be for me.

On the other hand, I also could not have imagined the ultimate customer service excellence I experienced after my last post. I was truly surprised and delighted to discover that between hitting the “publish” button and brushing my teeth and jumping into bed with him, my dear ITG had worked his ninja hacker magic on the interwebs, logged in to my computer and stealthily placed in my iTunes full MP3 versions of all of the Lullaby Renditions of Nirvana, even though I was once again barely making my self-imposed daily deadline of posting by midnight.

Like he’s done a zillion times over his long career as my CIO, co-CEO (Experience Officer), co-CPO (Parenting Officer), best friend and, yes, Head Cheer Leader for all of my endeavors, he set that box around my heart on fire. I didn’t even have to ask.

So, even if it’s legally ill-advised to make out with your IT Department, consider sending them or him or her a thank you note next time some random upgrade that you think has nothing to do with you seems to go off without notable disruption to your day. Or maybe just because most days you can get most of your work done most of the time.

They’ll love you for it, even if they won’t marry you. It’s a hell of a job, and it’s harder than it looks.

Thank you, ITG. You’re the best. Even when it’s complicated.