Thursday, October 28, 2004

Red-Headed Stepchild

I think I have Carpet Tunnel Syndrome. It's the lesser-known sibling of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. While millions of Americans suffer from this horrible condition, many go undiagnosed. After much research, here's what I've found out about it:

What is carpet tunnel syndrome?

Carpats is a word derived from the Greek word "karpats" which means "Carpet". A Carpet is a thick heavy covering for a floor, usually made of woven wool or synthetic fibers; a rug. While not designed to sleep on, a carpet has been known to house the unconscious body of one too tired or drunk to reach a sofa or bed. Tunnel is a word derived from the Greek word "tunal", which means "tunnel." A tunnel is a passage through or under a barrier. Any area of carpet between a sofa and a bed can be known as the carpet tunnel. The stiffness that occurs when a state of sleep occurs in the carpet tunnel is known as Carpet Tunnel Syndrome.

What conditions and diseases cause carpet tunnel syndrome?

For most patients, the cause of their carpal tunnel syndrome is unknown. For most others, the condition of drunkenness causes the syndrome. A small fraction of sufferers attribute "the bed being too damn far away."

How does a patient with carpet tunnel syndrome feel?

Patients with carpet tunnel syndrome initially feel numbness and tingling of the body in the distribution of the median nerve (the neck, the back, the legs, the head, the arms, the shoulders, the hands, the feet, the ears, and sometimes the hair).

How is carpet tunnel syndrome diagnosed?

The diagnosis of carpet tunnel syndrome is suspected based on the symptoms and the distribution of the body numbness. Blood shot eyes or a breathalyzer can help narrow the diagnosis of the syndrome.

How is carpet tunnel syndrome treated?

The choice of treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome depends on the severity of the symptoms and any underlying disease which might be causing the symptoms. Generally the sufferer should schedule an appointment with the closest bed and spend several hours or, in severe cases, days acquainting themselves with the bed.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

follow the yellow brick road

Yeah, I'm a programmer, but there are no bells and whistles in laboratory systems programming. When I follow posts of people and look at other blogs I hate them because they are so cool looking. I should know how to do that cool crap... but I don't. Damn me!


The guy in the office cubical diagonal to me is running the Marine Corps Marathon on Sunday. It makes me feel so fat and lazy. Last August I decided I would train for and run the Philadelphia marathon. With my longest run ever before that being about 5 miles, it was one of the most difficult things I'd ever done. 3+ months of running 4-5 days a week, 15-40 miles a week. This fall the most productive thing I've done has been installing a storm door on my (and my girlfriend's) house. Last fall I would wake up on a Sunday morning and go for a 10-20 mile run before I went and got drunk for the Eagles game. This year, I skip the run and indulge in excessive amounts of beer. When you check one of the things on your "Life's Goals" list off (skydive, check; run a marathon, check), is it supposed to eventually make you feel lazy and bored? I should revise my list to include things that actually do make you lazy and fat. Eat an entire xtra-large pizza in one sitting. Participate in a hot dog eating contest. Sleep for 24 straight hours. Spend one weekend without getting off the sofa for any reason other than to use the toilet.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Book Report: Survivor by Chuck Palahniuk

I'm the guy at my work who reads books. In a building of about 300 people if you asked someone if they knew me, half the people would say"Is he the one who's always reading?" The answer would be yes, but he's the one who is always reading at lunch instead of pretending to enjoy being interested in your life. I pretty much will only read at home if the book I'm reading is really really good.

At lunch today I finished reading Survivor. A book by the author if Fight Club about the sole survivor of a religous clut who's member all killed themselves except him. He's telling his story to the black box of a plane he hijacked for the sole purpose of killing himself. This was my second book by Palahniuk, the first being Lullaby (the story of a poem that when recited, or even thought about will kill whoever you want). I felt the same way about Survivor as I did Lullaby: Palahniuk has amazing ideas. He writes amazing sentences, amazing paragraphs, amazing pages, but the books aren't amazing. I know he has a huge cultish following, but his style of writing is too choppy and sometimes drawn out. Lullaby could have been a 20 page short story, then it would have been amazing. Survivor could have done without about 50 of its 289 pages (which is actually numbered in reverse order as the suicide counts down). I could open the book to any page and find a few sentences strung together that are so creative that I feel ashamed of my unimaganitive self, but then on the opposing page there will be a few sentences I can barely get through without skipping one or two of them.

I don't know if the character development is done in such a way that you don't really care if he dies or not, but I really didn't. I kinda wanted him to fall in love with the female lead character, but didn't care if he didn't. If Palahniuk's characters had more emotion I would have liked the story a lot better, but since they didn't care about themselves, neither did I.

My Rating: 2 1/2 stars

Typical good excerpt:

"It used to be this was a lot of fun. People just call you on the verge of suicide. Women would call. Here I am alone with my goldfish, alone in my dirty kitchen breading a pork chop or whatnot, wearing just my boxers, hearing somebody's prayer. Dishing out guidance and punishment.

A guy will call. After I'm fast asleep, it happens. The calls will come all night if I don't unplug the phone. Some loser will call tonight just after the bars close to say he's sitting cross-legged on the floor in his apartment. He can't sleep without having these terrible nightmares. In his dreams, he sees planes full of people crash. It's so real and then no one will help him. He can't sleep. He can't get help. He tells me he's got a rifle tucked up under his chin and he wants me to give him one good reason not to pull the trigger.

He can't live with knowing the future and not being able to save anyone.

These victims, the call. These chronic sufferes. They call. They break up my own little tedium. It's better than television.

I tell him, Go ahead. I'm only half awake. It's three in the morning, and I have to work tomorrow. I tell him, Hurry before I fall back asleep, pull the trigeer.

I tell him this isn't such a beautiful world that he has to stay in it and suffer. This isn't much of a world at all."

good stuff..

Monday, October 25, 2004

False Idols

Dear Ashlee,
I'm just writing to inform you that I've dropped your ranking on my Favortie Teen Idol list. I've never seen a Mandy Moore movie, or heard a Mandy Moore song, but I'm pretty sure she wouldn't pull a stunt like you did on SNL this week. Your band started playing the wrong song?? Please, give us more credit than that.
I've been a supporter of yours since the begining. When my 8 year-old niece said you'd never be as punk as Avril I told her "Na uh, you're way wrong. Didn't you see her? She's got punk rock black hair, she kicks butt." Then she told her mommy on me for saying butt, but I didn't care, I was right.
I always thought we had an emotional bond. Ever since that one episode of The Ashlee Simpson show where you were like so in love with that guy then you broke up. I almost cried, but then I had to go take out the trash and I didn't see how it ended.
Not to pour salt in the wounds, but I watched Mean Girls before SNL and Lindsay Lohan totally rocked in that movie. She was funny and smart and she would sooo never lip synch a song like you did!
My offical Favorite Teen Idol list is as follows:
1. Jessica (I'm know, I'm sorry, she just is)
2. Lindsay
3. Avril
4. Christina
5. Mandy
6. Ashlee
7. Britney (skank!)

If you would have just owned up to your mistake, I would have accepted it. I could still put you at number 5 if I get a formal apology. I still love you and hope I get it. You can call me on my cell.

Ashlee Simpson Fan Club Member 45364.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

What are the chances?

I guess pretty slim. Can anyone answer me this... when you edit your profile and it asks for your birthday, what is the birthday it shows as example? It actually shows my birthday. And it showed that before I even entered it. (the example date is mine and the year is my first birthday). Is it just a 1 in 365 chance, or do the people at know a little too much about the people that are signing up??

Friday, October 22, 2004

Head Rest

right now my cat is in one of those moods where all she wants to do is sit in the nape of my neck. How great is your life when that's really all you need? You lick yourself, you eat, sleep, and climb on your owners head while he's on the internet.
Anyway, enough about my cat. We're here to talk about me right? woohoo! Well, then this will be a pretty short lived blog, cause my ass is boring! I'm a computer programmer. Fun, huh? Aside from the occasional busy day, I spend 8 hours a day trying to not look like I've been on the internet all day. It's not easy.
When I meet someone and they ask me what I do, I'm generally greeted by 1 of 3 responses: 1) "oh yeah?... hmmm" (nod head, walk away) 2) "oh yeah? What language?" "It's called MUMPS" "hmm... never heard of it." (nod head, walk away) or 3) "oh yeah? My computer's been having problems with the blah blah blah.. can you tell me what to do to fix it?" "yeah, get a new one." (nod head, walk away)
I really wonder what will become of this blog because I have no deep emotions that will make me feel better about getting them out, nor will anything I write ever touch any unlucky bastard that stumbles upon this. I guess I'm writing because I have an addictive personality and once I found this stuff I've done nothing at work but look for good ones. Other stuff I'm currently addicted to: Sirius satellite radio.. even though I don't even have it, Texas Hold Em'... even though I never play it, whiffleball... even though its getting too cold to play, Franz Ferdinand and Modest Mouse's newest cd's, bowling (I just made the bold move to the spin approach instead of straight on), and the tv shows Lost, Desperate Houswives, Extreme Makeover Home Edition, and almost every reality show. At any point in time these addictions could completely go away for no reason if something new comes into the equation. There's only so much time in the day to waste away my time.
Editors Note: I previously wrote just about this same thing while at work today and it magically disappeared... if that happens again, that's it, I'm done with this obsession.... (please don't happen again...)