A pretty good day.

April 22, 2003


A pretty good day.

Did some writing this morning, actual pen to paper writing. It was not a think piece, not a set of sketches, not even a precis. I am happy.

I made time for writing by deferring the grading for Monday's class. I did get to re-read a couple of papers, but I was a little fried and think I need to do it again. At least I am at the top of the stack, so it did not hurt to read them.

Was just plain tired the middle of the day. I was mazy and slow moving around lunch, both before and after. Was a little slow out of the house but made it to campus on time.

Lunch was a lot of the meatloaf from the other day, with horseradish and that tomato sauce, and several sheets of matzoh lathered in Ted slime. I tried to eat enough to get me through the gym, because I don't have snacks for Passover.

Class went well, at least I think it did - I doubt my own judgements. I had them rapt for the first hour, then as they were begininng to flag I caned Sumner and got their attention again. Today's class was on the sectional crisis. I set it up by using familiar language in an unfamiliar way: "in 1853 the state of the nation was sound. In 1861 the state of the nation was war. What happened? How did things fall apart so very quickly?" I then set up the question of how did the republican party convince most northerners that there was a slave power and that it was a threat to their liberties? I argued that Southern actions, all of which made short-term or local sense, convinced Northerners that there was a threat. Northern reactions then convinced Southerners that there was a threat to their liberties, and BOOM the lower south Seceded after the election and before Lincoln and the republicans could take office and actually DO anything.

I was animated, even before I acted out Preston Brooks' assault on Charles Sumner. That passing mention in the Chronicle of Higher Ed. about using gestures was useful. I have started paying more attention to the way I use my hands to make points, being more animated when I lecture. I think I should set up a video taping - I wonder if this university does that. Look into it.


Was EXHAUSTED afterwards - I was effective on stage for 80 minutes working hard, and I had been tired before I started. Once again I found myself drifting and losing concentration on the drive home. I might have to take the extra time in the day to use the train, slower and more expensive but I can unwind without driving. Took a brief dreml, not even that, a brief eyes-closed, in the car at the gym while listening to Firesign Theater on NPR. They were ok.

Lower back / legs day.

    Gym weight 176.4
  • warmup 4:00 cycle, stretch, scp bar*10, oh squat bar*8, fr squat bar *8
  • squat, power style, bar*10, 135*3, 185, 225, 255*4 1/2, 245*5. Got a spot on first set, might have made it without the help. I am struggling half-way up, it is probably my abs. I hate working abs. Do 255 twice next time.
  • front squat, 185*5,5. Increase
  • deadlift. bar*5, 135*3, 185, 235, 285, 315*2, 295*4. OOF - went too heavy. Note that I normally DL before front squats, did them in other order today. I think this explains why the squats felt easy and the DL did not. Reverse the order next week and pick a weight based on how I feel.
  • standing calf, 170*12,12. Did these between the two work sets of DL to give me something to do.
  • good morning 135*8,5 - CHECK REPS - don't have my notebook with me. Felt form failing and stopped.
  • pull through 130*12,8. Felt a little dizzy, stopped here.
  • Cardio, recline cycle, 20 minutes, mostly at 15 resist, 55 rpm, 340 "calories"

Took a naked weight after exercise, after the shower, was 172 1/2. That is the lightest I have been in a while - is it passover making it hard for me to eat, or am I just dehydrated from eating fewer bread products?

My exercycle reading was volume 3 of George R.R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire Much like volume 1 of the series, I am having trouble getting into it. The characters are all somewhat likeable, somewhat stupid. They keep getting put into difficult situations, but it all feels somehow forced and contrived. No, thats not it. Perhaps it is that last night I spent time explaining the dilemna of Lyndon Johnson, torn between his desire for power and his desire for justice, and losing both to the Vietnam war. Today I spent time explaining how both North and South could convince themselves that the other section was engaged in a conspiracy against their liberties. After that, I don't really want to read about some fantasy characters making bad decisions. I especially don't want to watch as forces outside their control push them into bad situations so as to advance a dark, complex and murky plot. I will finish the book, but I will put it down and start something else first. I have a James Baldwin cued up and another couple of light readings waiting on reserve at the county library.

J had left the baby with the gym day care. Took him home, drank milk, walked the hound with the baby in the stroller (left the stroller outside, oops), fed the baby, ate my dinner, bathed the baby, J home, baby to bed, me to do dishes, read email, collect email from students, check the news and then write this.

J pointed out that I goofed. Not only did I leave the stroller outside, I also forgot to put my meatloaf away after lunch AND I left the cottage cheese out after breakfast. Bad Ted. In both cases I had not completely cleared the table and then looked and saw dried fruit when it was really cottage cheese and saw an empty matzoh bag when it was really meatloaf in a ziplock.

After dishes had a snack, fat-free yoghurt with almonds and mixed dried fruit, and a couple of slices of matzoh with ted slime. Also more milk. I drink a lot of milk after I exercise, have not been drinking as much over Passover.

Now I have to get myself to sleep at a reasonable hour. Lifting, especially leg/back day, makes it hard to sleep. A late dinner like the one I just had, makes it hard to sleep. Still, I be tired and I needs my sleep. Posted by Red Ted at April 22, 2003 10:36 AM | TrackBack