Monthly Archives: April 2017

Weekly Weigh-In, Week #16

Loss since last week: 2.4 lb
2017 Cumulative loss: 20.0 lb
Pounds from goal: 3.4 lb

So, after merely losing 1.8 pounds over the four-week period on April 18, I lose more than that in the following seven days. Although I did spend the past seven days fully compensating for some of the dietary sins from my birthday and Easter weekends, I can’t help but feel today’s reading benefited partially from a random weird daily low fluctuation. In fact, even though I’ve adhered to my routines today, I expect to weigh more when I step on the scale tomorrow. In addition, a reading showing little-to-no loss next week won’t disappoint me at all.

The Every Song in the Library Project

Over a year ago, I started a project centered on listening to everything in TeenLitGirl’s and my music library at least one time through. Because there were a lot of CDs, and not just TLG’s, that I never heard in their entirety, the process has unearthed a bounty of good music we owned that I just hadn’t heard before. One of the things I’ve done has caused the work to go slower than originally expected: any album I hadn’t previously listened to its entirety — a significant number of TLG’s albums fell into this category — required listening at least a few times through. Speed of completion aside, the process also allowed me to gradually assemble a kind of ultimate “good stuff” playlist; one playable on shuffle with my only occasionally skipping a song when the mood wasn’t right.

Working alphabetically by artist name, I just finished our Morrissey albums, and the project now stands at 11,300 songs completed out of 16,660. I wouldn’t call the process a “slog,” but I am a little surprised that about 1/3 of the library remains nearly 14 months after the start date. I honestly thought this would be done by now. However, the number of albums that required multiple replays proved to be larger than expected. New albums by favorite artists, which receive a higher priority, as well as the frequent need to just listen to the familiar and beloved, have also occasionally slowed or stalled progress on the project. On further reflection, maybe it’s more surprising that 2/3 of the library is now completed.

The great thing is that the “good stuff” playlist, even in it’s unfinished state, is already a marvel to listen to. I make regular use of it when in the car (logistically, it’s impossible to properly work on the project while driving) and love the frequent juxtaposition of the “new to my ears” music alongside the well-worn and beloved tracks. It currently contains a little over 4,200 songs, so it’s probably safe to assume that when completed the playlist will have somewhere in the neighborhood of 6,300.

Thank goodness for owning a still functioning iPod Classic; knowing some of the issues I’ve seen with iTunes not properly transferring music to newer devices, it’s a comfort to know my music device contains everything I want it to.

The other interesting aspect of this project is that during this period I have purchased less new music than I have typically done over previous similar time periods. Outside of the artists whose new releases dutifully appear in my library almost immediately upon release — recently, this meant albums by Colin Hay, Barenaked Ladies, & Chris Collingwood (former lead singer of Fountains of Wayne) — there’s just been little need to find new music because I’ve encountered so much of it in our own home. There’s just not enough time to devote to listening to new releases when I already have so much older material to properly acquaint myself with.

Finally, it looks like the project will be finished before the end of the year. This is important because 2018 will mark five years since the completion of TLG’s and my last big music project: compiling a list of each of our 100 favorite songs. We already agreed to revisit and revise the lists we made, and the current project has revealed some rather glaring omissions from my 2013 list — mistakes made in part because the size of the library, even at its size back then, encouraged skimming the titles as well as just trying to remember a song simply by name. When the time comes, I think I’ll have as much fun with the revision as I did the creation of the original list.

From the Phillies Home Opener

Just wanted to make this video clip a little easier to find in the future. It’s from the Phillies-Nationals game back on April 7 — the Phillies home opener. In it, you can get a quick glimpse of Brandon and me at the game — not that you can clearly discern it’s us.

Look to the right of the foul pole at the two guys in white shirts, immediately behind fence topping the wall, celebrating the Galvis home run that made the score 7-6. Yes, that’s us. I’m on the right with my back mostly to the camera; Brandon is the one jumping like a maniac.

Screen Shot 2017-04-20 at 3.00.46 PM

Weekly Weigh-In, Week #15

(A continuation of the series over at the old LJ site.)

Loss since last weigh-in (4/4): 1.0 lb
2017 Cumulative loss: 17.6 lb
Pounds from goal: 5.8 lb

Still plugging away, even if the rate isn’t as quick as I like. The excuses for the past fortnight are a trip to Philly for the Phillies home opener and Easter Sunday. Still, it’s a nice problem when you’re removing excess weight slower than you prefer. Enough about that, however. What I’d really like to do is share a few thoughts from the gym this morning:

  • My two currently preferred types of music when working out are metal and disco. I’m trying to figure out what this says about me.
  • I’d love to see how Beavis & Butt-Head would’ve reacted to the video for Ghost’s “Year Zero,” even if it wasn’t fully suitable for MTV airplay. My guess is that out of boredom and frustration the two of them would’ve turned off the video about five seconds before the parts they would’ve salivated over.
  • One of the women who frequently uses one of the elliptical motion machines near my preferred machine flails her arms for a good portion of her workout. Unless she’s a fan of the Phoebe Buffay philosophy of exercising (if she is, then kudos to her,) I just cannot fathom why she’s doing that. If she’s not working hard enough, why not just increase the resistance or incline?
  • I’m still waiting for the day where the readout on the elliptical motion machine’s screen tells me that I have worked out enough for the rest of my life so that I don’t ever have to go back. I’m certain I will never anticipate or enjoy exercising; it just runs counter to my default programming and settings.

On Good, Evil, and Victim-Blaming

The Psychology of Victim-Blaming” in The Atlantic is a few months old, but I had more than a few different thoughts and reactions, not limited to the original scope of the article:

Essentially good and just people are capable of, and have more often than not, committed horrible acts, words, and deeds against other human beings. Furthermore, they will conjure an array rationalizations that will allow them to downplay or ignore the pain, indignities, and suffering they have caused. However, that’s not always the case; I’m certain that everyone harbors a couple shameful memories of horrible things they’ve done that they refuse to reveal to discuss with anyone…

The absolute worst thing you can tell anyone who is suffering through a trying period is that everything will work out for the better in the end. This is often expressed in some form of “everything happens for a reason.” It’s the worst type of sympathy you can show someone, because it’s not sympathetic or empathetic at all, and the person saying it thinks they are expressing some kind of kind condolence. Essentially good people often spew this kind of crap – I’ve experienced it first hand…

The world is not a just place. You can do everything right, and still come out on the losing end of things. Horrible people will get away with and profit from their actions against others, and frequently they will suffer no ill consequences or be punished for them. Hell, sometimes they’ll succeed so wildly that no one will ever discover what they did. I know a lot of people find comfort in the idea that these people will face some form of divine or karmic retribution, but I’ve learned enough about religion to know that there’s no guarantee of that either…

Finally, while I appreciate religion’s many positive benefits, it’s very possible that this is an area where religion hurts more than it helps. It enables the human weakness, one exhibited by both the religious and non-religious, of wanting “someone else” to properly engage with and assist another person who has been victimized. It’s a far easier path to tread.

New Home

In response to LiveJournal’s draconian new terms and conditions, The Talking Moose is no longer calling The Moose Pit home. The old site will remain online, but solely for archival purposes only. Hopefully, a new site means more frequent posting, but this is by no means a promise or guarantee.