Sunday, January 10, 2016

Weight Creep, Refrigerator Rorschach, I Made a Thing!

Since I started working a few blocks from my apartment, I have gained…a tiny amount of weight. It’s nothing to panic about, I tell myself. It’s barely worth noting. But of course I have noted it, because I am who I am, and because I am ever on alert now due to the trauma it caused me to “have” to lose thirty excess pounds a few years ago. I am not going through that seventh circle of hell again. When I was working at the other location in the Central District, I would walk uphill about two miles every morning on an extremely steep incline, and walk back downtown on the way home. That was my exercise for the day, and while it was hardly a P90X workout, it did ensure that my heart rate got up at least twice a day, and that my muscles were engaging in some sort of resistance. But since I started at the new location, I’ve noted a distinct softening of the musculature and a general physical malaise settling in. So I signed up for use of the employee “gym”—a tiny but functional workout space with a balance ball, an elliptical, and several confounding contraptions I haven’t figured out how to use yet. I faffed around the last two days doing some crunch-type gestures and some half-hearted cardio on the elliptical during my break. I’ll just have to keep my fingers crossed that this new exercise “plan” will stave off further atrophy and weight gain, because I lack the will to do anything more ambitious. 

I’ve been putting a lot of mental energy into dealing with the work transition, and as such I’ve been letting things like writing my query letter go. But I plan to tackle it again soon, along with my new idea for a long-term project, whatever form that may take. Right now, I’m working on character development. There’s always this magical moment for me when something “clicks” and my main character comes into to full and brilliant focus. One of the best character-development exercises I ever read was to imagine what is on your character’s refrigerator doors. I thought this was brilliant advice. A refrigerator will tell you a lot about a person. You could be the type who has a million expired coupons stuck on there with motley magnets collected over years, (sounds familiar), you could be someone who has aspirational flyers for vegan food-delivery services, (also familiar) or you could be some pathological neat freak whose fridge doors are a blank stainless steel canvass. A refrigerator door reveals multitudes.

In a follow-up to last week’s post, I wrote my first “Life of Norman” story, received with  typically lukewarm praise. But I got seven upvotes! At least one of which was Mr. Typist, but I’ll take it. I’m enjoying the Norman phenomenon and will write another Norman story soon. Oh, and I finished my pillow!! I actually finished a thing! A whole, crafty thing from start to finish that required sewing and everything! Admittedly, the stitching is pretty jenky, and the whole thing is this close to exploding into a mushroom cloud of yarn and batting, but the point is, I did it! I crafted a craft. I’m a crafy m-effer. I can now strut proudly into Joanne’s Fabrics and hold my own with those goth hipster cross-stitch nerds. Ha! Evidence of my crafty brilliance:

--Kristen McHenry

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