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November 17, 2010

Do You Now

Wednesday. Up, around, about, to breakfast at half past six (we'll put off that lab work until tomorrow when there's no guitar lesson later in the morning), back now to the apartment at eight. Feeling pretty good after the sushi and sake last night. Not that much sushi, not that much sake, but enough, enough. Two helpings of green tea cheesecake. We'll see how the morning goes, how the guitar lesson goes, how the walk goes, before we judge last night's sushi and sake expedition.

Later. One reason I used to convince myself to take guitar lessons from an instructor, rather than follow along in a beginner's book, was I needed advice from someone who knew what they were doing on things such as how to hold the instrument, position the hand(s) and fingers and I've been getting good feedback. So we practice. A good lesson, a bit altered as I was by the sake last night. Good to know, good not to do it again. (hup! hup!)

An internal conversation with myself this morning on where to go for the walk. I was hungry, as I hadn't had all that much for breakfast, but couldn't come to a decision on what and where. Downtown to one of the many restaurants? Did any of them appeal? Back to the morning café for a BLT with Avocado sandwich? I could do that. Any buses coming? Not right then, they've changed the schedules, cutting back on service and not running as often as they did just last month. I can check the iPhone for that. Nice feature, that bus locator program.

So the decision was to walk down to the local convenience store and buy a Snickers ice cream bar while considering the problem. Ice cream encased in chocolate is easy to eat, less easy to justify eating as often as I've been eating it lately. A dogleg then through the bird area on Lake Merritt, an amble, really. No interest in stepping out as I have in the recent past. A photograph of a female Black Crowned Night Heron who stood her ground as I approached. They tend to do that. Not sure why. Not so much with the geese, cormorants and gulls.

Finally a swing by the local burger place for a steak sandwich (no onions or cheese) and fries, taking them home and eating at the computer. Got the steak sandwich down, they make a decent one, not much luck with the fries. Not much concerned about the fries.

So, a hour's nap as the afternoon came to a close. A bit of guitar later, my arbitrary practice rules are the lesson doesn't count as practice, although it is thirty minutes of playing, and I don't miss a day, a day counted even if I sit down with the guitar for a measly ten minutes. Not a problem so far, but obviously, if I'm mentioning it, it's been on my mind.

Have you had many days with ten minute sessions?

Twenty minutes minimum, maybe, and not many of those. Well, not too many of those. Two twenty minute sessions should be the minimum, three the target. I'd like an hour, often do an hour, started out thinking two hours, discovered two hours was not in the offing. Anyway not yet. Be sad if I should learn to play the thing and then not sit down with pleasure as often as not and play. I'm not much into self flagellation. Certainly not with a guitar. The idea is to pick it up and play it (with a smile).

Hup! Hup! (You do go on.)

Later still. To the lab tomorrow morning at seven, breakfast after. (Hup! Hup!) The cardiologist suggested a new drug to take the place of the Warfarin (a blood thinner) that's just been approved for use in the United States after extensive testing and approval in Europe. I'm no longer much of a first adopter. I don't know enough to trust any of them, but it's a pill you take twice a day, doesn't require monthly blood tests and has proven to reduce the chance of stroke over Warfarin by a good margin. Oh, and it costs seven bucks a dose, fourteen dollars a day. Which, as it happens, my insurance will cover. Strokes are expensive. No more blood tests. And the blood tests, as I recall, each cost something like two hundred dollars albeit covered by insurance.

Why even bring this up? Do you trust the medical establishment? The government? For drilling oil? For drilling people? Do you now? My bucko?

The photograph was taken at the the Mehserle trail sentencing demonstration in front of Oakland City Hall with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR II lens.