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September 03 2015

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Hell Hounds transformation process gif
Hell Hounds, oil on canvas mounted to panel, 47x51 inches, 2013-2015

apoplecticskeptic replied to your photo: In honor of our 17th anniversary, today we started…

You should have done Google’s new identity.

That’s some high praise, my friend.

September 02 2015

So now we’re 1 week, 4 days past surgery

The last 3 weeks, nearly a month have been a weird, out-of-body blur. The two weeks preceding surgery were a miserable nightmare, and looking back on it with a freshly recovering soul, I can see just how psychologically dark it got. Were I not a perpetual optimist, able to resiliently bounce back with little effort, there is some thought in my mind that I might have legit killed myself.

The unexpected week spent in the hospital was also bizarre. I was strapped and trapped in one room for 7 days. So many friends. So many kind nurses. A couple of soul-crushing setbacks. But overall extremely positive.

My mom and beagle were able to stay at my ex-girlfriend’s parent’s house because it was just around the corner. Now I’m watching their beagle while they vacation in Europe.

Monday I worked from home and got half my work done in twice as much time.

Today I feel the most “right” I’ve felt in a long time. At least two months. Maybe even 6 years? I’m still not fully healed, and my guts are not fully balanced, but if this is 60%, I’m going to be delighted with 100.

I can’t say exactly how this whole ordeal has changed me specifically at this point (More compassion? A slower life? A new focus on what is important?), but it has certainly altered my path and my perspective.

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In honor of our 17th anniversary, today we started rolling out a new logo for @onmilwaukee, designed by yours truly. (at OnMilwaukee)

August 29 2015

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Cleaned, washed and vacuumed everything, then threw a bunch of dogs into the room.

August 28 2015

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Oh wait, not everyone dresses their dogs on Friday? Oh, ok.. #boxerlove #ada #family #shetoleratesme

Fabulous bitch.

Fashion icon.

August 27 2015

Countdown: Day 6 past surgery

I’m still in the hospital a few days longer than I thought, and despite one setback on day 3, things have been trending on an upward trajectory. I think I’m getting out tomorrow.

I had to get a tube in a few days ago (which took 4 tries) and go off food while my gut kicked back into gear, but yesterday it came out and today I may even get to progress to solids.

Even being at hospital weight, I feel pretty damn good, so I can almost guarantee in a month it’ll have been worth it.

August 23 2015

Count up: Day 2 past surgery

So everything is progressing slowly but smoothly.

They cut out about 9 inches of my small intestines, which included 6 of 10 strictures (the other four being big enough to be manageable). They removed my appendix while they were at it.

I have a 6-inch incision that runs between my abs that currently looks like a fleshy centipede and I am also pretty severely anemic. After they go shuffling your insides around, they tend to shut off, too, so I’m walking around, waiting for my guts to start churning again so I can start eating some real food.

I’m currently on a lot of pain killers, so that helps with everything else.

This ended up being a bigger endeavor than I had anticipated (which, looking back feels foolish), so now I’m trying to figure out the next best steps for recovery.

But overall things are looking up!

August 20 2015

Countdown: 1 day until surgery

After a rough couple of days and having to leave work early due to a mini freakout (I think after two months I finally figured out that caffeine may have been the instigator) I think I’m about ready to get this thing done.

I got my emissions tested, registered my car, deposited a check and cleaned up my room. My mom is flying in this evening. I still have to do dishes, and then all the prep work for the surgery, which basically just involves washing myself in a lot of anti-bacterial soaps and mouthwashes and whatnot.

In a few days more I should be able to eat normally again, without fear of intense cramping, or worse. I hope I’m not getting my hopes up.

August 19 2015

Countdown: 3 days until surgery

The past few days have been less desperate, but I made bad choices last night (eating cheese curds to get on the Travel Channel), which fed into a declining day today.

I couldn’t sleep last night, so halfway through the workday I lost all energy and had to leave work early to take a nap the rest of the day. I can still barely lift my hands to type.

But my mood is basically fine. I don’t feel the same sense of dread. I feel like this is just a passing feeling, not an inevitability, so at least that’s positive.

Three more days of proper decision-making. I can do it.

August 18 2015

think you can kick winne the poohs ass? think again


Guess I can’t kick his dick either.

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Attempting to get famous on the Travel Channel. #travelchannel (at Milwaukee Beer Bistro)

August 17 2015

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Jalal Sepehr - Water and Persian Rugs, 2004

August 16 2015

leahj replied to your post: Countdown: 5 days until surgery

Do you have say… an Amazon wishlist for friends who aren’t in Milwaukee and can’t increase your happiness in person?

That’s very sweet, but I don’t need any gifts. Just having people who will let me vent is very helpful and any kind of response is a little light in my life.

I was complaining to another friend about how all I do is complain, because I’m so unmotivated to do anything else. I feel pretty lucky that, barring any complications, this procedure should “solve” the problem and I can move on with my life.

It certainly gives me perspective and empathy for people who live with unsolvable, chronic illnesses.

Countdown: 5 days until surgery

I’m feeling better today! But it’s likely because I haven’t left the house yet. Also, I bought a bunch of bottles of Ensure, so I’m trying to maintain calories and vitamins through these intense shakes.

Yesterday I went for two 20-minute walks and had to take a two-hour nap as a result.

The pains lately seem to be coming in 12-hour bursts. I’ll be super uncomfortable for 12 hours, then pretty happy for 12 hours. Then the cycle restarts.

Seeing and hearing from friends also helps, even when they can’t do anything about it.

I just wanted to get my happiness up here before it fades again.

August 15 2015

Countdown: 7 Days until surgery

The rapid decline I’ve experienced over the last few weeks is frustrating. It’s an overwhelming alignment of a bunch of terrible things that are physically and mentally exhausting.

An inability to eat just about anything, resulting in: Loss of energy. Loss of weight. Loss of motivation. Boredom. Lack of concentration. Mood swings.

Turns out part of “the cure” is part of the pain and I have 7 more days of dealing with this. Every day I wake up feeling worse than the day before. I’m literally watching myself waste away. It’s frustrating.At this point if I make it 7 more days on the bike I’ll be surprised.But day 8 is gonna be great.

August 14 2015

She got a little too close and personal with an anthill and paid the price. #frutiger #beagle

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This was a pretty regular scene during the Lance Years. Final climb, Postal leads things out before an Armstrong attack. Somewhere between then and the steady collapse of Fuentes-fueled also-rans, the heads of state would reel in some token French breakaway or other—a single-squad workman like Walter Beneteau, or maybe a pre-Festina star clipped of his EPO wings like Didier Rous, or, in this case a blazing young hope like (wait for it) Sylvain Chavanel.

I bring this up because with Oprah and the Reasoned Decision in the rear-view, people seem to have forgotten that the Tour caught up with Armstrong long before the law did. His 3rd place in 2009 was followed by an utter shellacking the following year, clipping a curb on a roundabout at the foot of a climb on the first mountain day and losing 12 minutes.

Still, Lance would attempt to salvage some face, holding back and specifically targeting a rugged Stage 16 for an early attack and breakaway win. But alas, those years of excellence in hacking his oxygen transport system didn’t do much for the Texan’s tactical sense: despite having teammate Chris Horner with him in the final selection, Armstrong could only muster 5th—a disappointment handled with his typical grace.

Instead, taking the honors on that day were Pierrick Fedrigo (1st) and Sandy Casar (2nd)—two “token” French riders with fantastic tactical know-how, honed through battling for table-scrap stage wins during the years of Armstrong’s Tour dominance.

I find it fitting that Lance’s last gasp of TdF glory was denied by the very skills and riders that had been all but eliminated from relevance during his TdF prime.

Such a great explanation.

August 11 2015

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‘Glitch Socks’ Designed by Doc Pop Featuring Classic Computer Errors and Gaming Hiccups

paging: @banal-echo-gee. you have a message at the courtesy white phone. 

So Christmas is just around the corner…

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