Tag Archives: Benefit

Progress Doesn’t Always Mean Going Forward In A Good Way

I love the future.

The very idea of it, the changes inherent in it, just gives me a thrill. Sometimes it’s a thrill of the wonder of the future and sometimes it’s a thrill of fear, a worry about what comes next.

For the most part, though, I’m always looking forward, anxious to see what new thing will be coming to benefit us, to vex us, to change us. So, yeah, you could say I’m a proponent of progress and moving forward.

(And, if any of you dudes or dudettes figured out by the opening bits that I’m about to talk about an instance in which I’m not thrilled by progress, then, congratulations. You’ve been paying attention for the last couple of years of your life at least.That wasn’t snide, by the way. I mean it. Congratulations on paying attention to the how the world around you works. You’d probably not believe how high is the number of people for whom the world around them is a complete mystery, operating on unknown and ineffable principles. However, I’m just remembering that this is a parenthetical aside and, so, should probably be moving back to the main thrust of my argument.)

In this instance, however, I’m not all that thrilled by the idea of progress. (see above) See, I live in what had been a relatively stable neighborhood. The houses have been here for a relatively long time — since the 1980s at least — almost completely built out. It’s the almost bit that’s causing me some concern here.

See, across the street from the entrance to the cul de sac on which I live, there was one house on a very large piece of property. The owner sold that property to a developer, who then turned around and built 20 homes on that same piece of property. The developer also built a road that connects a larger, more trafficked road, to our road, which runs parallel.

The problem isn’t so much the new neighbors, but the fact that their road allows drivers to circumvent the crowd on the old road by taking ours. And it’s not really the increased traffic. It’s the increased number of numbnuts and jackwagons that seem to be using our road.

They don’t stop at the stop sign (a sizable percentage not even slowing down) despite there being at least 10 kids under 10 years of age living within 100 yards of that stop sign. And there are several who have decided that the yards along our road are not, in fact, yards, but, rather places where they can dump the evidence that they’ve been drinking.

Yep, when I’m out walking with Buzz, The Garbage Disposal That Walks Like A Dog, I constantly find — in the same places every day — empty Coors Light cans, empty and often broken bottles from Icehouse and the occasional Steel Reserve malt liquor can. People toss out empty sixpack containers, still in the bag.

It’s just this blatant disregard for other people that really frosts my chaps, if you dudes know what I mean. The sense of entitlement that they must feel: too important to have to stop at a stop sign despite the danger to others, too important to hide their drinking in their own trashcan.

Now the maroons are starting to dump their empties in actual yards and not just the bits of yards that are further from the homes.

What I want to know is: What goes through someone’s mind where they think that it’s okay to just toss an empty out on someone’s lawn as you’re driving by? Seriously. I want to understand, but I don’t think I ever will.

These types of poltroons just aren’t like the rest of us. Oh, how I really wish I could find out who’s doing it because I have a lot of garbage I’d like to leave on their yard. And, yes, I know two wrongs don’t make a right. But, remember that three rights can make a left.

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Through A Glass Dark(Green)ly

Jealousy is an ugly emotion. Unless it’s directed at you because you’re walking into an event with two smokin’ hot ladies on your arm.

And by you I mean me and by two smokin’ hot ladies, I mean my wife, known to me as She Who Must Be Shown Off Every Once In A While, and her friend, the Sultry Siren.

It was an entrance for the ages.

Both ladies were dolled up, dressed to the nines, with hair swept up and styled just so. Dresses tight in just the right places, and flowing along suggestively suggested lines. High heels accentuating the well-toned calves in every leg.

Provided you didn’t look in the middle of that particular grouping, you’d probably have your eyes dazzled by the pure, raw sensuality they were pumping out.

The middle being me, of course. Now, I didn’t look bad, understand. I looked pretty good — for me — in my tux, wearing a shocked, disbelieving grin as I kept looking side to side. Still, I was all right. The ladies on my arms. . . Another story all together.

I wasn’t the only person who looked either. I noticed a lot of men glancing our way, looking away, then shooting another glance at us, their eyes slightly greener as they imagined how much better they would look if they were sandwiched between the two smokin’ hot ladies.

What they didn’t know was that they couldn’t have pried my arms out of theirs with a crow bar, three elephants, a camel and one very stubborn platypus. (Which, as you know, are quite stubborn.)

As disappointed as I was that I had to give up two very nice tickets to the off-Broadway production of Sleeping Beauty, I had to feel that I’d received the better end of the deal by going to the March of Dimes Signature Chef’s Auction. Unfortunately, no, the March of Dimes wasn’t auctioning off the chefs.

Instead, the chefs each prepared a single dish and then we, the attendees, would wander throughout the high-toned feeding trough, getting a slice of awesome at each stop. In addition to the food, there were about 50 different silent auction pieces, and another live auction.

Each item or service auctioned off goes to benefit the March of Dimes and that organization’s efforts to help every mother carry her pregnancy to term, and providing care and treatment for children born too soon or with congenital defects. They are, to put it mildly, a pretty fantastic organization.

So when I had the opportunity to dress up, slink out for a night on the town with She Who Must Be Seen To Be Believed and the Sultry Siren, there was no way I was going to pass that up.

Being the object of many, many jealous glares was just icing on the cake. And I love icing.

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The 7-Minute Workout That Really Works — UPDATED

I love working out. Well, really, I love having worked out, if you dudes get the difference.

The benefits from working out are tremendous. I feel better. I look better (for certain often rather less-than-better values of better). And my mood is much improved.

Unfortunately, I severely dislike taking the time to drive to a gym, work out, then drive back home. There’s not much I can do around the house with a bum knee and severe plantar fasciitis in my left foot.

Which makes what I just found out about seem like a pretty good deal.

It’s the 7-minute workout. No, really. And it’s supposed to be as good for you as a longer workout. Again, no, really.

According to a column in the May 12 issue of The New York Times Magazine, high-intensity exercise for a short duration can be better for you than other sorts of exercise.

“There’s very good evidence” that high-intensity interval training provides “many of the fitness benefits of prolonged endurance training but in much less time,” says Chris Jordan, the director of exercise physiology at the Human Performance Institute in Orlando, Fla., and co-author of the new article.

Which means that, with the right workout, you can achieve in seven minutes what might take someone else a much longer duration of work to accomplish. That is, get the benefits of an hour-long workout in merely 7 minutes. I’m 12well_physed-tmagArticleliking this more and more with every second that passes.

Before we go much further, though. Let’s take a look at the exercise progression that the paper’s authors recommend.

What they’re saying is that you need to basically book through this exercise regimin as fast and as hard as you can. This needs to be done at or near to your max capacity for exercise, dudes. Otherwise you’re just going through the motions.

Interval training . . . requires intervals; the extremely intense activity must be intermingled with brief periods of recovery. In the program outlined by Mr. Jordan and his colleagues, this recovery is provided in part by a 10-second rest between exercises. But even more, he says, it’s accomplished by alternating an exercise that emphasizes the large muscles in the upper body with those in the lower body. During the intermezzo, the unexercised muscles have a moment to, metaphorically, catch their breath, which makes the order of the exercises important.

So, yeah. I think I like this. I’m going to start doing it and then give you a report on who it works. Who’s with me?

UPDATE — Peter, one of the gentlemen behind the 7-minute workout showed up in the comments today. He mentioned that they loved the exercise regimin, but had a hard time remembering what came next. So he and the other dudes behind the curtain, went ahead and made a nice web-app over on their site.

All you have to do is go there, click on the HUGE button that says GO and you’re off. It’ll say out loud and on screen what you’re supposed to do and count down the time left. Then it will count your 10-second rest, followed by the next exercise. I love it.

Give it a try. If you like it, why not send them some feedback at feedback@7-minute-workout.net?

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