Monthly Archives: August 2013

The false readings of a bathroom scale…


Maybe it’s my age, maybe it’s my metabolism. One way or another, the bathroom scale and me aren’t in sync.

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August 20, 2013

Ellen/Reid: Monday just got away from me, it was go-go-go, so this is written first thing Tuesday morning. It’s another damp, cloudy and – mostly likely – rainy day. Depressing, and more what you’d expect in Seattle. I couldn’t deal with this all the time but we’ll make do.

They talk about August being the ‘dog days’ and they’re not kidding. Really have a case of the blahs and all that goes with it, and there’s a lot. The bathroom scale continues to display blatently false readings

My archenemy awaits to torment me with lies, lies, lies. It's probably too late to return it to the factory for obvious defects.

My archenemy awaits to torment me with misrepresentations and lies, lies, lies. It’s probably too late to return it to the factory for obvious defects.

after hitting the gym, and the zip isn’t there in my workouts or walks. I’m behind on my blogs and no worthy posts come to mind. Maybe it’s the back-assward politics down here. In all, it’s gotta be like running a marathon – you just sort of gain a head of steam to run through that wall, or you at least you figure out a way to go around it. The one thing that I am looking forward to is Thanksgiving with you guys. That keeps me going.

Reid, keep me up to speed on the job thing. Sounds like some good possibilities. The digital world has to be where it’s at these days for a lot of companies who are just now getting their arms Continue reading

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The 7 year itch and the countdown to retirement…


It’s been 7 mostly good years years in North Carolina but there have been some &*%#$ stinkers, too. Ellen and Reid have seen the trail of letters that paint the larger Southern picture.

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August 12, 2013

Ellen/Reid: I’ve about had it with humidity. Heat, not so bad, but feeling drenched all the time, not so good. It’s just the dog days down here. Yesterday when we played golf, I was soaked by the second hole and it didn’t improve from there. But the forecasters predict cooler temps ahead yet they completely, and conveniently, omit any mention of insidious humidity. It’s just the price you pay for choosing to live in these parts. But that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

The longer I'm down here, maybe I am beginning to show some 'neck tendencies.

The longer I’m down here, maybe I am beginning to show some ‘neck tendencies.

Reid, I hope you’re keeping track of the airline changes on your ticket to Savannah. I’ve not really taken a close look, probably a shift in flight number or such, but you’ll need to follow that. How do you opt to follow flight changes on your phone? I just want you to keep getting in early enough so we can spend some hours together before Emma’s entourage blows into Hilton Head.

This retirement thing keeps rearing its head. I had a chat with my good friend Ann who was a big-time exec with the bank, and she thinks it’s doable for a variety of reasons. I think back a couple of years after that hospitalization/surgery scare when the doctor said he didn’t think it did my long term prospects any favor. What I may do is poke around about part time writing at the bank that may allow me to keep my benefits but let me get on with other things. There’s a book in me somewhere but it doesn’t know how to get out. I’d like to teach a little more. Your more pragmatic uncle may toss buckets of cold water on such thinking for loss-of-salary reasons but it’s worth an exploratory conversation or two.

The now-deemed-illegal tomato plant vilified by the HOA garden Nazis continues to Continue reading

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The intellectual side of Reid in Seattle…


Turns out we missed Reid in Seattle by a matter of a scant few days. His visit was a little more eclectic than ours.

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Reid at the EMP Museum in Seattle. He's always had a curious and intellectual side to him.  We may not have seen that in his formative years, but we see it now. (Photo: Chase Turner)

Reid at the EMP Museum in Seattle. He’s always had a curious and intellectual side to him. We may not have seen that in his formative years, but we see it now. He was in the NW for a Phish concert with buddies but he took in the cultural portion of the Emerald City, too. (Photo: Chase Turner)

August 5, 2013

Ellen/Reid: Well, you can kiss the greenbelt behind the house goodbye. We got a note from the city zoning department notifying us and other homeowners within 300 feet of the project that the 5.5 acres that is now bordered in solid greenery is being developed into what appear to me to be mega-mansions. It’s quite the downer. Felicia worries about what will happen to the deer we see grazing on our shrubbery, the resident hawk that watches from our pines, and the frogs that relentlessly croak in the uncovered stream right behind us. It’s depressing to think of the canopy going away. More of man’s incursion into the natural world, but I suppose the folks said the same when my neighborhood was developed 20 years ago or so. The only question is where is the lot line for the new development. From the plat they circulated, it might be 50 feet away from the creek, so perhaps not all the greenery will be lost. I’ve called the city about it, but as you would expect, no response thus far. The guy who owns the property is named Phillips, and I see him on a lot of my Saturday and Sunday walks since he’s up early in the morning walking his little dog. I mentioned the sale to him yesterday, and he said his tax bill was $22,000/year which was a little steep for a retiree. I couldn’t grind on him because it’s just the way things go. Let’s hope they don’t scour the land down to the nubbins or at least to the creek. It would be nice to keep some vestige of green.

Played golf three times this weekend and had the same score each time – 82. It could be so much lower but my golf psyche just won’t allow it. My swing is making baby steps toward improvement but isn’t all the way there, yet.

Washington and Oregon seem ages ago. Seems like we were just boarding the plane to head West. I don’t typically buy lottery tickets but perhaps now is the time to try my luck. If I win, you both win.

This starts the third week of working out at the gym. Feeling a tiny bit of improvement although the damned scale has yet to provide independent verification of progress. Maybe it needs to be replaced with a more user-friendly model. Ellen, I did get the coconut oil and will try it this week although it doesn’t sound particularly appetizing to me. I didn’t even know they could extract oil out Continue reading

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Riding the beach at Hilton Head…


As Ellen and Reid get on with their lives, the chances to really get everyone together are fewer and further between. When we do get that chance, we’d better make the most of it.

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July 29, 2013

Ellen/Reid: As is typical, I was procrastinating on the housing for a Thanksgiving family-a-thon. Since February or March I’ve told myself ‘Call RCI to get a place for Thanksgiving’ and was kicking myself as of late because that window was in all likelihood closed. So when I did get off my rump to make the call, my first option was already filled. But the operator said ‘let me check other availability along the coast’ and sure enough she instantly came up with what would have been my real first choice had I thought it was there for the taking, Ocean Palms, on Hilton Head.

Reid on shore patrol a few years ago at Hilton Head. If the weather is good, we'll spend a lot of time at the water's edge this T-Day.

Reid on shore patrol a few years ago at Hilton Head. If the weather is good, we’ll spend a lot of time at the water’s edge this T-Day.

An incredible place. Not sure why it was still open but it was and we’ve got it. It’s one of those spots where from the deck Emma might even spy a stray alligator in the adjacent waterway. Reid, if Liz has any 11th hour change in plans, let me know. She is welcome to come down. It will be fun to get Emma poking around on the beach, so let’s hope the weather is halfway decent that weekend. As discussed, you and I, Reid, will do all the cooking. There’s a great semi-sports bar right on the beach a short walk from the unit so we can even hang there. You guys have been there, haven’t you? It overlooks the Westin pool. We can rent bikes, walk, (run, since you guys are working towards a half marathon) or veg. Reid, you and Tim can fish and I might play a round of golf.

I will make air arrangements quickly. The suggestion is for you all to fly into Savannah, GA or maybe even Charleston. Continue reading

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