Frazzled -- 06/07/03

I've not posted here in several days...

Can it really be that I've not posted since Memorial Day?

I've just been so busy. As I reported recently, I'm moving into a new job. That is a good thing. The problem is that right now I'm trying to do both jobs and it is eating up all of my time and energy. It's certainly making me too busy to have done any updating of this journal. (Okay, so I have still tossed a few words around in email and in posting comments at various blogs, but that doesn't help me with this. Maybe what I should do is keep a file open all the while and type a comment from time to time? Pseudoblogging.)

So... anyway... as we have already established, I was very busy with work all this past week and the week before. (In fact, I am typing this on my laptop on my dining room table where I have been working on work-related tasks for several hours today.)

This past weekend (May 31/June 1) I took Amtrak down to New York City to visit Adam and Leah. Adam and I worked on a project: installing a curtain rod for their living room window (a picture window flanked by two windows that open) -- a significant distance to span. We went to a hardware store a few blocks away -- Chinese-owned with most signs in English and Chinese and a Chinese-language radio station playing -- and bought two lengths of metal conduit (like you might run telephone or Cat-5 cable through), a connector, and large screw hooks. A low cost (only around ten bucks) solution that worked well and looked good. The picture shows Adam drilling into the concrete wall. (And yes, it does appear that there are spots on my lens -- it was a very rainy weekend.)

Here's the view from their terrace -- a lovely little private park for the residents of their group of buildings. You can't see it in the picture, but just to the right is a nice play ground for little kids.

Adam and Leah are WNBA fans -- have had season tickets for the New York Liberty since the league began. Late Sunday afternoon Adam and I went to their season home opener -- they beat Washington 70 to 57 in a very well-played and entertaining game. (The location was convenient since Madison Square Garden sort of sits on top of Penn Station -- and Amtrak was only running a fairly reasonable fifteen or twenty minutes late for my train home.)

Then came this incredibly busy week trying to do two things at the same time. I had an appointment to donate blood Tuesday afternoon. They wouldn't take it because I failed the blood pressure test. Your diastolic (the second number in the pair) has to be below 100 and mine was 106. Two months ago the same thing happened but when I sat and relaxed for a few minutes my reading came down and I was able to donate. I tried the same thing this time but it didn't come down enough.

Yes, this certainly did worry me. The last time it happened I went to see my doctor and got a 142 over 88 reading. Not wonderful but not hypertension. So on the way to work in the morning I stopped at my doctor's office and had a nurse check my blood pressure... 138/88. I guess to a degree this is "white coat syndrome." Back in my younger days, when my blood pressure was usually something like 120/70 in a doctor's office, but when I would go to donate blood (i.e., when somebody was going to make a hole in my arm and stick a tube in there to take my blood -- giving blood isn't easy for me, my veins tend to be slippery and to roll under the needle and sometimes it takes multiple tries to get everything going) my readings would be something like 142/88. So I suppose now that my "normal" reading bounces between what they call "high normal" and "borderline" the prospect of giving blood is enough to push me into hypertension.

I bought a blood pressure monitor. (Consumer Reports had recently rated a ReliOn model as a "best buy" so I stopped in a WalMart at lunchtime and picked one up) -- One thing I discovered: taking my blood pressure as soon as I got home from work on Friday showed me 152/91... but sitting and relaxing for a few minutes brought it down to 139/89 and a few minutes more of relaxing made it 134/86. (At which point I changed and went out for a three and a half mile run. *grin* And that was tiring but felt wonderful.)

This morning was okay but now it is raining steadily -- Nancy got in a tennis match at nine and Sean went off to work at power-washing houses. After almost six hours of that, he came home to change and go off to his job at KFC, working 4pm until 10pm close (which means that with clean-up chores, etc., he won't finish until close to 10:30). There's a baby shower for Leah on Sunday (in New Jersey) so this afternoon Nancy drove off to visit one of her sisters in western Connecticut and then on Sunday they'll drive to New Jersey together for the party. She should be tired by the time she gets home Sunday night. I should be tired too, because I'm going to be very busy with work -- making editing changes and corrections to the materials for a course I've been writing -- which I have to do now because this coming week my "new" job will eat up a majority of my time.

Work will be hectic like this for the next month or so -- by then I should have been able to complete (and hand off to others) the two major projects I'm working on for my "old" job and except for a bit of mentoring of the instructor picking up those tasks, I'll only have to concentrate on my "new" job.

(In the meanwhile I think I had better get this posted -- over slow phone lines because something is wrong with our cable Internet connection -- have a service call scheduled -- and then down to the basement for a workout -- then dinner and more working on this project.)

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