Wednesday, November 30, 2011


For those of you who don't know, I'm an Associate Dean at a for-profit career college.

There, I laid it out, you all can gasp over the fact that I work for a 1) for-profit, 2) career college.  Sadly, they've gotten a bad rap, mostly because we threaten the hell out of the State Colleges/Universities.  But that's a rant for another day.

Oh, I suppose I should tell you to look at the disclaimer on the right side of the page that says that I don't speak for my employer.

As an Associate Dean, I carry a full teaching load (if you ask my hubby or kids, they might tell you it's more than a full teaching load - it's more like working two full-time jobs) in addition to my administrative duties.   One of the things that drives me absolutely bat shit is students who put ZERO effort into their education.

School's expensive, especially a specialized school like ours, though we haven't seen nearly the tuition hikes that the State schools have.  We sat down once and figured that for every F a student earns, it costs them approximately $1,800 in additional tuition.

As I was entering my grades tonight, I was dismayed to see that I have four morning students and one evening student who have earned 'F's.  FIVE!  Know what the common denominators were? 

Attendance and failure to turn in work (funny, how if you don't come to class, you don't know what the assignments are and since I don't accept late work, if you're absent the day it's due you're screwed).

Every. Single. Student who failed did so because they didn't come to class or turn in their work.

That's not to say that the students who do attend are being "given" grades - they earn every point they get.  I am not an easy teacher; I have high expectations and I hold them to it.  These students are going to be medical assistants and healthcare administrators who have a good chance of giving care to me, my family, or my friends in the future.  I want them, at minimum, to be competent.

All I can say is it's a damn shame when the instructor puts more work into the students' education than the students do.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


My computer suffered a terminal ITD.  I'm very sad about that, as I *loved* my Dell.  It's been almost exactly two years since the IT guru at work was able to resurrect my laptop.  Did I mention I loved my Dell?  Loved it.

I hate this loaner from the school, though I'm thankful they loaned it to me.  It doesn't play nicely with my bodybugg and since it's a loaner, I don't want to download stuff onto it.  Also, the "e" key doesn't work very well (which is probably why it's a loaner or because it's a loaner).

I went on a great last ride today and can't upload any of the pictures - the computer's just not playing well with any of my stuff. *pouts*  However, Mom does have her great pictures of the ride up over at her blog if you want to see the absolutely fabulous day we had.

My office mate at work has been telling me it's time to upgrade my laptop anyway, but since I had the last surviving Dell on campus, I didn't want to give it up.  The newer model laptops we have just aren't as good as the Dells were.  No matter, it's out of my hands now, unless I want to buy my own laptop instead of getting a school-issued one.

I'll stick with the school issued one as soon as they're finished formatting it and putting all of the work crap on it I need.

I think I'm going to go mourn my laptop. 

Goodbye sweet Dell, I'll miss you.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The End

Two words I've never written before today, "The End".

I've written my whole life.  In fact, I don't remember a time when I didn't write.  It's just something that I do.  Sometimes I do it better than others, but I do it.  I've always got something buzzing around my brain trying to morph into a full-blown story, but today I finally made it!

I've got tons of half-completed novels on my jump drive and in random notebooks around the house, but now I can say I've completed one!  As in, from the beginning, all the way to "The End".

There's a lot of editing that needs to be done, but I think I'm just going to sit and enjoy this surreal feeling of actually being done for a bit before I jump into the sad business of editing.


Don't forget the Double Dog Dare!  Click on over to Once Upon A Miracle for directions on how to vote for Itty Bit and help Rachel win the $1,000 she's planning on donating.

Saturday, November 26, 2011


Now that we've spend the last few days thinking about all of the things we have to be thankful for - for most of us it's our health - and fighting the Black Friday crowds, let's do something to help someone else out, what do you say?

Here's the kicker - it won't cost a thing, just a couple of clicks of your mouse, mabe a couple of keystrokes to log in, and - BLAM! - you've just taken a step toward helping out some itty, bitty babies who can't help themselves.  Rachel posted about this yesterday and it has now escalated to a Double Dog Dare.

C'mon, not a single one of us can resist a Double Dog Dare, can we?  So click on over to Rachel's blog and follow the instructions for how to vote for this darling kiddo...

Photo shamelessly stolen from Rachel

I Double Dog Dare you.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Day Run

RCC talked me into doing a four-mile run this morning.  And by run, I mean we paid our registration fee, showed up and walked probably 3.25 miles.  It was a pretty route, through City Park and Old Town.

I was feeling pretty down about the results, 1:05:39 for me and 1:05:30 for RCC, much slower than our 5K pace back in September.  When we started talking about it, though, we realized that at least five minutes were wasted right at the start where there was a big bottleneck until the first turn.  Trying to fit 3,600 runners through a starting chute didn't work so well.  Some of the runners had strollers and some had dogs; those people were mostly clueless about what was going on around them and blocked the path for a lot of us.

I'm not a runner, I've never claimed to be, but I can only imagine how frustrating it had to be for the people who were stuck in the bottleneck who were runners.

I was feeling pretty good when we finished the race, certain that I was under one hour.  I wanted to be under 50 minutes, but gave up on that at the start.  Then I saw our times.  That 1:05:39 was crushing and I started getting upset at myself for not pushing harder once the crowd did break free.  Since I was so disappointed in my time, I was pretty certain that I hadn't burned very many calories either.

I plugged in my bodybugg when I got home, expecting to see somewhere around 300 calories burned.  Boy was I surprised when it showed 635!!!  I'm super excited about that and can console myself with the thought that at least five minutes was wasted at the start, so I was sort of close to the time I wanted to make.

Now, in just about an hour and a half, the feasting will begin and I won't feel too guilty about it.  RCC has made some meat pies, Digger's making his favorite pudding pie, Mom's got the turkey going and I get to eat.  Thanksgiving is by far my favorite food holiday!

I hope everyone has a blessed Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


This is an unsolicited review.  I received the bodybugg as a prize in a contest; I did not recieve it for the purpose of reviewing it.

And, no Mr. Daddy, I'm not talking about crabs!

I'm talking about the ultra-cool calorie management system I won through 24Hour Fitness' Refuel Your Fitness challenge.

The bodybugg is a sensor that you wear on an armband around your left tricep.  Last night, on the Biggest Loser, they had the contestants wearing it on their legs, but the bodybugg people say that the sensor is not calibrated to work on the leg and so the readings are incorrect.  It "reads" calories burned by measuring skin temp, sweat production, pulse rate and a cool accelerometer that can tell if you've been walking or running.  Since each person burns calories differently, there is a section during the set up that your weight, age, lifestyle, etc. has to be entered (body fat, too, if you measure that).  It's supposed to be 90% accurate (or more).

El Poquito Diablo helped me set mine up after one of our training sessions, so set up went fairly smoothly.  I could see that if you had to do it on your own it could be cumbersome and time-consuming.  Together (and by that, I mean, he told me what he wanted), we determined what my target caloric intake and deficit should be.  My goal deficit - I burn more calories than I take in - is between 500 - 800 calories/day.

The bodybugg does the calories burned calculations that you upload to the website, but the caloric intake has to be put in your profile manually.  Until yesterday, I had huge problems with this - there apparently was a Java update issue.  Java updated, did not and they didn't play together anymore.  Seems to have been resolved, as I haven't had any problems putting in my daily intake recently.

I like visuals, so I really like the fact that when I upload my calories burned from the bodybugg (plug it into the USB port) and type in my caloric intake, I get a report that looks like this:

Today's graphs don't look so good; I didn't have time to work out today and I'm at work until 10 pm, so whie I still have a caloric deficit, it's by a much smaller margin.

I wasn't sure I was going to like this, but I LOVE it!  If you're working to lose a few pounds, this is a good way to do it.  I'm certain that this will help me break my plateau and get me on track again.  24Hour Fitness sells them, and from Nov 18 - 30, they will be selling the bodybugg V3 (like I have) for $99.00, which is a great deal!  As much as I love it, I don't think I would have paid full price for it - if I hadn't won it, I would not have even given it a second glance.  Now that I own one, I see what an opportunity I would have missed out on.

Oh! Oh! Oh!  A shout-out to 24Hour Fitness - they inadvertently sent me the V3 instead of the new SP that interfaces with smartphones.  I got a notice that the error had occurred and that they'd be sending out the SP.  I was careful with my V3, kept all the packaging and such, so I could send it back.  I got my SP in the mail and got a note inviting me to keep my V3.  Since I already had my V3 up and running, I gave the SP to Nebalee.  I think she loves it as much as I love my V3.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Trying to Maintain Some Level of Decorum

I'm used to making a fool of myself when working out with El Poquito Diablo - I'm certain that he comes up with stuff just to embarrass me, so I'm fairly embarrassment-proof while at the gym. When being tortured, we do a lot of laughing and swearing - I'm okay with that., I went in to do some intervals by myself on the elliptical machine.  I plugged in my earphones and started flipping through the channels.  I landed on Rob Dyrdek's show "Ridiculousness" - totally random show about some pretty impressive stupid human tricks (and epic fails).  Mindless entertainment to keep me preoccupied while I was slogging through my intervals.  The last clip he showed was this...

Y'all, I tried.  I tried my best to maintain some level of decorum.  I swear to the Sweet Baby Jesus, I tried.

Instead, I'm sure the people around me thought I as having a seizure as I was trying not to laugh my ever loving butt off.  Y'all, I snorted.  A couple of times.

I'm not sure they'll allow me to watch TV while on the elliptical machines anymore.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Letter of Intent

Time to hook up with Julie at Four Sons to get everything that bugged you this weekend off your chest!

Dear bilateral femoral-tibular articulations knees,

I know I abused you when I was younger.

I know I asked way too much of you from junior high on.  You told me, pretty vehemently to lay off in seventh grade when you both revolted and I ended up with both of you swelling up like water balloons.

I laid off.  I strengthened my quads.  I learned what I could and could not do.  I learned how to avoid the water balloons.

Oh, on occasion, I would forget and do something stupid, but for the most part, I took good care of you as I got older.  Even when I took up soccer at thirty, I tried to look out for you.  You'd give me a reminder once in a while, just to let me know I might be pushing it too hard.

I got it.  I paid attention, I took care of you.

So what's with this?

One little 5K on a dirt road and you laid me up for weeks.  I tried working through it.  I ate handfuls of ibuprofen.  I slept with ice on both of you.  I quit trying to work through it.  I laid off.  I didn't go to the gym; I only wore good shoes.  I behaved.  Even when I didn't want to.

Even El Poquito Diablo got worried.

You relented.  The swelling went away, the pain subsided.  I breathed a sigh of relief and eased back into working out.

And betrayed me today.  I've been so good. I've been taking care of you.


All I did was step down from the stair master.  That's it.  I was being so very careful not to do anything to aggravate you; I supported my weight with the arms of the stair master and gingerly stepped down, being careful to make sure I stepped squarely.

And you struck with a vengeance, threatening to drop me to the floor.  El Poquito Diablo noticed.  I lied and told him I was okay.  He knew I lied.  He made me go easy on you today during our session.

I took ibuprofen, I iced you twice while at work.  I've got the other ice pack waiting for bedtime.

I'm not happy.

Thanks for the GI bleed and frostbite

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Blogging in Secret

I'm at a NaNoWriMo write-in and I'm supposed to be working on my novel, but I can't focus on it right now, because I'm so excited about my new bodybugg.

Remember the 30-day challenge I did through my gym in October?  Well, for each challenge completed, I earned entries into weekly drawing for cool prizes.  I won the first week prize of a pedometer - which is pretty cool, but I'll be giving it to Nebalee, who actually likes (or fakes it well) running.  I was going to keep it for myself until I got notified that I won a bodybugg SP system.
RCC in: "Bodybugg sounds like crabs."

Anyitchycrotch, this bodybugg is definitely not crabs.  But it might make me crabby, in that it tracks not only calories burned, but calories taken in.  I tried to talk El Poquito Diablo out of using that feature, but that idea just gave him laughing fits.  He might still be laughing, honestly.

I just received it in the mail today and haven't had a chance to try it out, but I'm so excited to use it.  I want to know how many calories I'm burning during my torture workout sessions with El Poquito Diablo.  I've been plateaued for a long time (since July) and think this will help me to break that plateau.  I can't wait to give it a proper review in a week or so.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

GunDiva: A Runner?

Not in this lifetime.  But...

RockCrawlinChef decided a while ago that he wanted to run the Bolder Boulder, a 10K race in May that my sister runs every year as her birthday present to herself.  I personally think she's a little nuts and it has apparently rubbed off on my husband.

The first step in his little plan was to start running 5Ks.  He must have forgotten that I. don't. run.  Not for fun, anyway.  I've done my share of running while playing soccer, but that doesn't count.  There's an actual point to running when you're chasing down an attacker.  I still see absolutely no point in running just for the sake of running.  Nebalee is gearing up for her second half marathon.  That's just plain insanity in my book.  However, she swears that it's the only way she can keep any weight off.

I've been plateaued at 166# since July.  I've got to do something about that (other than denying myself food, let's not get crazy here).  *Heavy sigh*  Damn, I've got to get on the running bandwagon.  I'm not happy about that, but I've still got twenty (at minimum) pounds to lose and this seems like the way to go.

So...back to RCC's plan of running 5Ks.  He roped me into running the Harvest Farm Fall Festival 5K in September (so I'm a little behind on my blogging). Well, running wasn't exactly what happened.  We "ran" in intervals - we'd pick out a spot, run to it, walk to the next spot, and so on.  It worked. 

We made it through the race without ambulance intervention.

It was ugly.  Beyond ugly.  But we made it.

And we were starving - after the race I ate more than I'd eaten in months.  Obviously, running burns a calorie or two.  I ate non-stop for two days and it was just a 5K.  Imagine what I could eat if I ran them more often!  I may never lose any weight while running, but, by God, I'm planning on a world-class pig-out on Thanksgiving Day after RCC and I run the Thanksgiving Day run - a 4-miler.

It's probably not the best reason to take up running, but last year, I gained a ton of weight during the holiday season.  This year, I plan to eat what I want and run it off.  Wrong motivation, I know, but I'll take motivation where I can get it.

My plan to survive the 4-miler is to do 1/8 of a mile intervals for two miles a couple of times this week and step it up to 1/4 mile intervals for three miles a couple of times next week and four miles the following week.  I have no intention of actually running the whole four miles - that would just be crazy talk.

But I do plan to finish it, take a nice, hot shower and enjoy BOTH Thanksgiving dinners without guilt.