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Mark Atwood
How my birthday went
So Friday morning, while getting the assorted work tasks underway, I was chatting with omahas, and she invited me down to their place for a dinner out. A most welcome invitation.

It being a Friday, there was: Gym. Session 123 of 124. Back, Shoulders, Triceps. Cable Pulldown. Dumbbell Rows. Low Back Raise cycled with Upright Row. Hammer Frame Shoulder Press (which looks damn good in the mirror, every muscle from my shoulder curves to my wrists pops out). Cable Tricep Pulldown. Dip.

I received a package I had ordered from Vernon Library Supplies: a box of a thousand archival "will not turn yellow" "the glue will not corrode the paper" "the glue will not turn to powder and fall off" pressure adhesive labels. I'm going get a personal Ex Libris imprint (probably in raw postscript) and put one in each of my books. (I wonder where I can find a color inkjet printer loaded with archival ink?)

Due to Omaha's invitation, I actually left work before sunset. Of course, it helps that the daylight hours are getting noticeably longer. (Even with missing a day on Tuesday, I still ended up with (just) over 40 hours in my weekly logbook.)

Kouryou-chan got a great deal of glee singing "Happy Birthday To You" to me. A few minutes later, elfs got home, with Yamarashi-chan in tow, and so I got a chorus of it again. :)

We decided that a good place to go out would be Claim Jumper. Large Quantities Of Meat were eaten. There are few things that make one feel more like a carnivore than eating ribs. And my hosts refrained from informing the waitstaff that it was my birthday, sparing me of being the spectacle of being circled about by restaurant staff chanting out some variant birthday tune.

After dinner the girls were so worn out that they were discovered to have crawled into their beds and crashed, entirely on their own, completely skipping their nightly ablution and story rituals. Very soon after, the Big People turned in as well.

The following morning (today), my first personal errand was to go to the gym and purchase two blocks of ten sessions each. So now my gym entries will be titled "Gym. Session x of 144" instead of "of 124".

I had Omaha in tow, so as to give her a ride to CapHill to meet with one of her partners in MacRadio (Begin pitch. If you have a Mac, you should listen to their shows. End pitch.). I keep teasing/threatening to take her to my home, just to prove I don't live out of my Forester and my cubicle, and had her 95% of the way there this time, but not quite. Some other time.

It's just as well, it's been a couple of weeks since I've vacuumed, and the carpets were turning grey again. I swear, every time I vacuum and mop, I could make another cat out of what I pour out of the tank.

My phone bleeped at me, it had received a message from my dad, who called to wish me a happy birthday. I'm looking forward to going fishing with him and my brothers in Alaska in a few months.

My next appointment was for 3pm, a makeup piano lesson. I went home, washed up, fed and watered the cats, and then made the mistake of laying down "for a few minutes". I opened my eyes again at quarter to. Crud. I rushed out onto the roads, giving Mr. Henry a call to tell him I was going to be 15m late. And so, of course, the 520 bridge was slow. I was half an hour late. And thus had a short lesson. (He had another appointment.)

Still, it was a good lesson. After a couple of E major scale warmups, I worked my way thru the piece better than I had expected, and then learned about baroque style terrace dynamics, which are going to be a challenge to learn to play. (The Baroque masters did not do crescendos and diminuendos, mainly because the keyboard instruments available could not do them well, so instead each sequence is played with the same dynamic (loudness/softness), which is then changed as a stepfunction for the next sequence.)

Then I came up to CapHill to Vivace to enjoy some rosetta'ed white velvet and wireless internet. This is the last place I used khem before it was stolen. I'm going to keep better track of amsu.

I've got some stuff really stacking up in my personal todo.

My dentist called a few weeks ago to make an appointment, which I deferred a bit. I need to call them back, and get a recommendation for one more local to me. As neat as Dr Anna is, the main reason I picked her practice was that she was so close to where I lived in Ballard, and now it's a major PITA to get over there.

I also got a reminder from Dr Monahan, it's time for Kidde's checkup. (For all you Seattle cat owners, I cannot recommend her enough, instead of boxing up your cat and subjecting it to being hauled to a vet's office, with all the attendant stress and travel, she and her vet-tech actually come to you, and they can do everything short of surgery and x-rays right in your living room, and she doesn't cost any more than a "normal" vet.)

Tax time is coming up fast, and I've got a lot of stuff to do in that regard. My taxes last year are still snarled, my registers are out of balance, I still have a balance in my 2003 MSA I need to get before it ages out. Plus, my quarterly March payment to TioRico is in 9 days, and I had better make damnsure that that check will clear.

I'm starting to notice some soreness in my thumbs and big toes. I hope that it's either psychosomatic, or just strain from heavy dumbbells and going up on my toes in the calve raises. Because the alternatives are bad. I read that one of the complications from a high protein weightloss diet (I'm on an loose "caveman" diet, heavy on lowfat meat with lots and lots of greens.) is gout. Yes, gout. I will start drinking even more water, and start doing red cherry and red grape juice, I read that that works well for that. If I can find a source of the stuff with the sugar taken out, that would be ideal.

I want to go soak at Tubs again. But like so many pleasures, it's kind of tawdry to enjoy alone.
16 comments or Leave a comment
wendolen From: wendolen Date: March 6th, 2004 09:15 pm (UTC) (Link)


I was just reading the Lush newsletter. Now I want a hot tub I can use their ballistics in!
docorion From: docorion Date: March 7th, 2004 12:05 am (UTC) (Link)
Gout it is (a complication, that is; I wouldn't presume to diagnose over LJ). Lemonade will also help, FYI, if you like lemonade. Basically, though, what all of those interventions do is acidify your urine so you can dissolve more uric acid and not make stones in your urine (ie, kidney stones). I wouldn't think it would work so well for gouty attacks in the joints, although it probably can't hurt.
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: March 7th, 2004 12:29 am (UTC) (Link)
So I supposed that getting religions about my vitamin C suppliments will work too?
docorion From: docorion Date: March 7th, 2004 03:21 am (UTC) (Link)
Theoretically, yes. (It takes a Whopping Great Load of vitamin C to acidify the urine; in patients with spinal cord injuries, we used to use a gram a day or more). (Helps prevent urinary tract infections, when used with another med, mandelamine).
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: March 7th, 2004 04:50 am (UTC) (Link)
That's only two 500mg pills. I would sometimes just pop and chew that, just to enjoy the tartness.
From: missdimple Date: March 7th, 2004 07:43 am (UTC) (Link)
Ok, so just I am understanding. The lemonade would help someone who is afflicted with gout or someone that seems to have it? (I am assuming you mean the former.) Someone we all know and love has been diagnosed with it. Should we be keeping acidic liquids in the house for him to drink? Are there any other recommendations you would have?
docorion From: docorion Date: March 7th, 2004 11:00 am (UTC) (Link)
The idea is that lemonade et al helps keep the urine acid, which makes certain compounds more soluble in urine, where they would otherwise precipitate out and form stones.

Honestly, diet is more of a factor in gout; the deal is that there are certain foods rich in purines (organ meats (and meat in general), beer (has lots of guanosine, a purine amino acid), certain vegetables (asparagus is often mentioned). Having said that, this sentence is lifted directly from the emedicine monograph on gout:

Diet modifications can only improve the serum uric acid levels by 1 mg/dL and rarely are able to lower the uric acid level sufficiently to prevent further attacks and accumulation of uric acid.

[for the record, 1 mg/dl is pretty insignificant, as uric acid levels can reach 12 mg/dl or more in people predisposed to gout]. Medications are the current mainstay of treatment. (The link may ask for a username and password. Registration is free, if you like, and I don't believe they check the address).

Uric acid stones are not as common as other types, like calcium oxalate; the lemonade trick also works better for those types.

(Aren't you glad you asked :-)
onemintjulep From: onemintjulep Date: March 7th, 2004 08:44 pm (UTC) (Link)

Spinal cord injuries?

How's that again? I'm still dwelling in the class of "Giving steroids immediately is imperative!" "No it's not." "Yes it is." Not." "Is."... well, you know. What's with the breaking of the neck and drinking of the lemonade, oh Great Master?
docorion From: docorion Date: March 7th, 2004 08:57 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Spinal cord injuries?

Well, well, well. Howdy, farm boy! Set and rest a spell, and old grandad will tell you a story...

Once upon a time, I worked as a unit coordinator at Boston University Hospital. It happens it's the Regional Spinal Cord Injury Center, for rehab after your steenkin' steroids don't freakin' work (Oops; did I say that out loud? Guess so...). One of my jobs was transcribing the orders; every patient was on a gram of vitamin C and mandelamine (I forget how much). Basically, the idea was that the vitamin C would acidify the urine, and the mandelamine would turn into formaldehyde in the acidic environment, and keep the urine nice and shiny clean. It works, after a fashion, I guess. That's where the comment came from, in any event.

Good to see you!
onemintjulep From: onemintjulep Date: March 7th, 2004 09:23 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Spinal cord injuries?

Errr... so nice shiny clean pee makes it all better? Is this the mannitol effect you're after, or are we just menfolk boiling sheets for the delivery?

sheesh.. all this socializin' is makin' me a mite unsteady...
onemintjulep From: onemintjulep Date: March 7th, 2004 09:30 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Spinal cord injuries?

Uh oh. Now we've got two docs on board, so all of our friends' journals are going to pot. There's going to be more pee and poop than in a daycare nursery. And I fear a touch more Latin in addition. Hi Mark! Happy Birthday! How's your urine coming along?! Is that a scroll in your toga or are you just glad to see me? :D
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: March 8th, 2004 07:05 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Spinal cord injuries?


We have finally got you into LJ.

Now, to just get you to make posts...
onemintjulep From: onemintjulep Date: March 8th, 2004 10:28 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I've been assimilated (shocker!). But damn, I'm so busy commenting on y'alls nice pages, when to have time for my own? 'Sides, it's so pretty and clean when it's empty. :P
docorion From: docorion Date: March 7th, 2004 11:05 am (UTC) (Link)
And having said that about lemonade and acidifying the urine, I read the rest of the monograph and find this:

Some authorities recommend alkalizing the urine when starting probenecid to reduce the risk for renal stone formation. [probenecid is a medication to increase uric acid excretion][emphasis mine]

So apparently, the lemonade trick won't work for uric acid stones; quite the opposite, in fact.
From: missdimple Date: March 8th, 2004 07:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ummmm...I'm more confused than when I first asked the question.
docorion From: docorion Date: March 8th, 2004 10:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think explaining in person would be shorter :-/
16 comments or Leave a comment