Chapter One


She answered not looking away from the glowing notebook screen that illuminated her soft cheeks.

He gazed at her. The notebook sitting on her lap supported by long lean legs that have seen miles of road and treadmill. Small rounded breast that popped from a firm torso toned by countless hours. Even her neck was firm, partially hidden by her flowing blonde hair.

She sat on the porch swing, gently swaying back and forth in effortless glide backlight by the mid morning sun. The only word that came to mind was, stunning.

Dave wanted her. He always wanted her. Who wouldn’t want her, he reasoned. He wanted her then and he wanted her now.

On the porch he stood in his bathrobe, a tattered rag of thinned faded flannel. He pulled it tight to covered his belly.

“No”, he questioned.

Her hazel blue eyes finally lifted from the screen to cast the answer.

Her sports bra was still damp from a morning run. She ran with her girl friends. They assembled on the front porch of the house, chatted about kids, life, groceries and husbands. Maybe not in that order but usual topics. Depending on the day and weather, the group decided on mileage, a route and then began to run.

On this particular day, a bright Saturday morning of low humidity, they ran to Gigo’s Gym, a relaxing four miles away.

At the gym, they sipped purified water infused in vitamins and other nutrients. They talked more about kids and life and husbands and jobs while toning and exercising body parts. Once pumped with energy that originates from a dopamine progression, they returned to the front porch via the same four miles, where they high-fived and hugged and made future plans.

The group, numbering five on most Saturdays, were known as the Running Club, a mix of mid to late career women who found solace from life’s issues from physical activity. Husbands were encourage to run along with their wives although it was unusual if any did.

Dave was interested in physical activity of course even if a thin damp sports bra was included in the mix.

His wife was the de facto leader, elevated to local celebrity status by losing over a hundred pounds and blogging about it on the increasing popular Carla’s Run. She took her position too seriously, Dave thought at times, cataloging miles, calories, reps and participation and attitudes to share progress with those who ran with her and followed her on the web.

“No”, he repeated, maybe questioned. He didn’t mind the damp bra.

(to be continued)


I was Sniped

I watched this auction for the last 5 days. I placed my bid shortly after the auction was listed. I checked on it every day, multiple times a day to see if I was the highest bidder.

I was for all those days.

Ebay thoughtfully sent a reminder to my phone five minutes before the auction ended. I signed onto the account and watched the seconds tick down to 3, 2, 1.

Cool, I won this auction for a price that I thought was an extreme discount as my max bid was 100% beyond the starting bid.

I was excited to win this auction. After all, it’s been five days.

I was the sole bidder while the auction was online. I had a hard time believing that I was the only bidder. Certainly there were other interested people. The item was a vintage photo from the early 50’s and selling for less than the price of a pint of my favorite IPA.

I had fallen in love with this photo, imaging who the people were and what had become of their lives. I am developing an enthusiasm for vintage photos and have already purchased several from eBay.

A friend asked what I do with these vintage photos of people I will never know. I replied and said that a printed photo needs to be saved, if possible, so the memory of these people is persevered, even if I don’t know them, even if I am the only one who remembers, even though I never knew them.

Plus, I included, I scan the photo and add it to the slide show and my digital hoard. And, just to be transparent, the girls are cute in these photos and the cars are new and the homes are antique.

I told him I looked forward to adding this photo to my “collection” as I was clearly the winner in this auction. He walked away and mumbled something. I couldn’t decipher but maybe I heard ‘loser’.

When the counter ticked to zero the “You’re the highest bidder” statement was replaced with “you’ve been outbid”.

Seriously … at the very last moment … the very last second.

WTF. I was watching. How could this happen. Is this legal? Who would do this? I’ve been in this auction since the beginning. I was the only bidder. I’ve devoted time and emotion to this.

I had heard of “sniping” only through the Weird Al parody song “Ebay”. I can recite the lyrics if needed. I thought it was a myth.

I’ve lost a few auctions at the last minute, some that I was watching but didn’t have the ability to bid again. But, those auctions didn’t rise my blood pressure like this one where I lost at the zero second and there was absolutely no time to react. And, maybe I had fallen in love with the photo, maybe with the girls in the photo. That’s what losers like me do when they bid on eBay I heard someone say.

After I calmed down, I looked up the reasons why you can lose an auction at the last millisecond. And, now, I have some new strategies.

Calories and Art

Calories for Wednesday, April 5, 2017

My total calories for Wednesday, April 5, 2017 was a heavy 1,853, which is 243 calories above my daily target of 1,610 calories.

The bulk of the calories came at dinner, where I consumed a plate of Spaghetti Carbonara, a caesar side salad and a slice of bread. I also had two bottles of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. The total dinner calories were 1,453.

The family gathered at an Italian restaurant to celebrate my mom’s recovery from her stroke of late February. She has made a marvelous recovery. A doctor visit earlier that day confirmed that she is on her way to a full recovery. It was the first time mom has been outside the house (except for doctor’s appointments) since the event.

I had the usual Slim Fast shake for breakfast and a protein bar for lunch. I realize the two bottle of the all-so-wonderful Sierra Nevada Pale Ale pushed me over the target. Had I refrained from consuming the beer I would have been under the target. Fortunately I stopped at two bottles.

I had zero exercise calories for the day. Thankfully, the pain in my feet has subsided. It’s not gone but is fading. I may be ready for a short walk or run over the weekend.

New Art

Yesterday I mentioned that I purchased a drawing from the Tri Kappa New Artist show at the Lafayette Art Museum in Lafayette, Indiana. I intended to include a photo but did not include it before I posted. Anyways, here is the photo.

Loss Of Innocence, a drawing that I purchased from the Tri Kappa New Artist show at the Lafayette Art Museum, Lafayette, Indiana.

Loss Of Innocence, a drawing that I purchased from the Tri Kappa New Artist show at the Lafayette Art Museum, Lafayette, Indiana.

I’m amazed at the talent these young artists exhibit. The works in painting, drawing, textiles and sculpture was varied and showed concern for theme and style. The Loss of innocence drawing is really a mixed media piece, a drawing and collage. It caught my heart and attention as there is so much to look at and explore about in this piece, one reason why I love a great collage as this one is. Thankfully, it was still for sale. Many pieces were not for sale as patrons had already bought those items. The show started on March 9, 2017. I walked through the galleries three weeks later.

View of one gallery of the Tri Kappa New Artist show at the Lafayette Art Museum, Lafayette, Indiana. There were two galleries of new student art work.

View of one gallery of the Tri Kappa New Artist show at the Lafayette Art Museum, Lafayette, Indiana. There were two galleries of new and original student art work.

Wishing Everyone a Great and Beautiful Day !!

New Exhibits

I have not been to the Fort Wayne Museum of Art, yet I am on their email list. This morning the museum sent an email announcing two upcoming exhibits, Juxtaposed and Robert Williams: SLANG Aesthetics!

From the Fort Wayne Museum of Art web site, Juxtaposed “showcases the New Contemporary movement,  widely considered the largest and longest running art movement in history”. The SLANG Aesthetics! exhibit features Robert Williams who is “upheld as the godfather of the low-brow and pop surrealist art movements, and with as much frequency denigrated as an irreverent iconoclast among the arbiters of ‘high’ art”.

I am going to add the Fort Wayne Museum of Art to My Art Museum Bucket List. At least to take in these two exhibits, which runs from April 22 – July 23, 2017. This may prompt scheduling a vacation day to drive to Fort Wayne for the day. There is some family history in Fort Wayne as my paternal grandfather worked for Philo Farnsworth at the Farnsworth Television and Radio Corporation. I’m certain there is a historical marker somewhere in Fort Wayne I can search for.

I have a copy of the May 2013 issue of Juxtaposed magazine, yet don’t subscribe. I like the  high contrast art and text in that issue. Although I enjoyed that issue, I never subscribed. I don’t believe I saw another issue on the news stand. However, I have remedied that ‘issue’ and subscribed via the web site.

I have not heard of Robert Williams, the SLANG artist. This exhibition will allow me to know more about his work and his personality. I enjoy reading about artists and how they make their art, what effort they put into their craft, the emotions are revealed.

Calories for Tuesday, April 4, 2017.

I ended the day at 1,370 calories. That is 240 calories below my target of 1,610. I had the usual Slim Fast shake for breakfast, a protein bar for lunch, two beers for evening ‘cocktails’ and a bowl of Maple and Brown Sugar instant oatmeal for dinner.

I hope the Slim Fast shake and the protein bar gave the minimal amount of essential nutrients as I’m certain the beer didn’t and not certain about the oatmeal. Although the beer gave me a lift over the low level funk and the oatmeal was very sweet.

I walked two miles in the morning of April 4 for 169 calories. My feet were really hurting so I ended the walk. I decided to stay away from walking or running for a few days so my feet could stop hurting. Maybe I’m overdoing the exercise, or have bad shoes?

New Art

I purchased a drawing/collage by Nicole Huff, a student at McCutcheon High School. I saw her drawing in the Tri Kappa New Artist Show at the Lafayette Museum of Art. The drawing struck a cord in my emotions and so I bought it. It is titled “Loss of Innocence”.

I haven’t made any new art of my own. Although, I have built stretcher frames for 13 new paintings. I have one more frame to build and then I can start to make some new drip paintings. My parents asked if I would make a new painting for their home, so I should get on with the process.

Wishing Everyone a Fantastic Day !!

In a Low Level Funk …

Seem to be in a funk. Although I am determined to continue my weight loss effort, I seem to have slipped into a low level funk.

It’s not depression. I certainly know what that is. But, this is just a “– oh hum –” type of thing. I don’t seem to have any enthusiasm or desire for much of anything at the moment.

Hopefully it will soon pass.

Calories for Monday, April 3, 2017

I ended the day at 1,350 calories. I had the typical Slim Fast shake for breakfast and lunch. For an evening ‘cocktail’, I had 24 ounces of beer, wonderful beer. For dinner, I had a bowl of oatmeal. It was the Kroger instant, maple and brown sugar. It was easy to prepare, sweet to eat.

Exercise was good. I got five miles in for 423 calories. I walked two miles during my lunch break and another three miles in the evening. I was able to get in the Week 3 Day 1 C25K workout during the evening walk.

I must be doing too much walking or running, probably in the wrong kind of shoes because my feet really hurt. It kind of hurts to walk or run. So, I believe I will take a few days off from exercising. Hopefully that will prevent any further injury, if it is really an injury.

Well, I hope everyone has a great day !!