Oct 172013

Most of the time, when we wager, I wager for a meal.  I enjoy going eating with others, cause the conversations usually get interesting.  Like making more bets over who can fit a beard papa creme puff in their mouth.

9027151818_0d7e52d672_bBut one time, this past summer at lunch, a couple of guys I work with talked about doing the AIDS LifeCycle ride.  Wanted to see if I was interested.  After all, I was like them – commuting to work occasionally.  Just that their commute is 50+ miles and mine is 1.5. If I take the scenic route.

I’ve thought about doing a century often. This event would check that box off. Twice. In a week. While sleeping in a tent.

I’m not getting any younger. So I might as well do it when folks I know are doing it. I told them I was at 80% likelihood of joining them on the ride. Something interesting was happing at that lunch.

I thought I could get out of it when I saw that the Tour de Cure that Sal and I ride was happening on June 8th.  But luckily enough, the ALC ride ends on the 7th. So I can catch flight home that night and be ready to go with Sal the next day. I didn’t have any good reason not to do the ride.

Sonny went to a meeting in the city one night, registration was at a discount and I got signed up.

Folks, that probably know more than me, suggest getting a new bike. But I’m kind of used to my bike (and stubborn and cheap) and I don’t think I’d ride a road bike after this, so it seems like a waste to get a bike just for training for this ride. Perhaps I would have a different story next spring or summer. As it is, I’d rather take that money for the bike and donate it instead. Much healthier to shave 10-15 pounds off my body than off my bike instead…

If you would like to join me, I can get you a discount on the registration fee. Send me a note. It is going to be fun! (I need to keep reminding myself of that…)

If you would rather just sponsor me on this craziness, I sure would appreciate it. Use this link.

Thanks – and let’s go eat sometime!

Jul 082013

Tummy was feeling a little unhappy Saturday afternoon.  Lots of napping.  My brother asked me what I had eaten at the ballpark the night before.

“Uh…1 and half Crazy Crab sandwiches, a licorice rope, a deli sandwich or two that was in the suite, some chicken wings, peanuts and popcorn of course, a carrot cake cupcake, half of a huge cookie that wasn’t so delicious, some beers here and there.  Oh and some pizza.”

He was a little surprised that I didn’t have a hotdog. They were there, just didn’t move me for some reason. And only one garlic fry.  I don’t know why I had just one fry.  I think at that point in the night, I was feeling okay. Must have just been carb conscious. My willpower must have gotten a second wind at that point!

Anyway, he just stared at me waiting for the dawn of the obvious to rise for me.  But it wasn’t clicking for me. I’m used to being able to eat like that and not feel it, while he’s a little more…delicate. Looks like I’m becoming more like him now.

Update: At work, talked to some co-workers, half of them also feeling a little funk over the weekend.  All signs point to the chicken wings…I may not be gaining on my brother as much as I had thought!

Jun 072013


A while back, one morning I was watching some goofy videos on the web, as I feel they keep me in a good mood all day.  Sal joined me.  That morning we saw a guy spank a female friend, her jump up in shock, and then him smashing a pie in her face.  Good stuff.

A bit later on, I was walking by Catherine, who was leaning over, and made eye contact with Sal.  I wound up like I was going to give her an enormous spanking, but I didn’t.  Just pretended to, her not noticing.  Then Sal asks “But where is her pie?”  And his mother is confused why he’s asking about a pie for her.

As I explained the story to a mother that didn’t look so pleased, I started to question my life choices. During some point in my life, consciously or not, I had decided that pies were to be eaten and not thrown. Now, I wasn’t quite so sure anymore.

And over the past few months, I’ve gotten more and more curious about what the pie throwing lifestyle would be like. I don’t feel like I’ve been able to find that initial video Sal and I saw, but I’ve seen a lot.  Buzzfeed has a nice page of tips too. That couple in 19 could be the couple Sal and I saw originally, but it doesn’t quite feel like it to me.  My memory of it is a different angle. But my internet memory ain’t so good no more.

With all this research I’ve done though, I feel like I might want to try it out. I’ve been so bold as to even tell Catherine that sometime this year, she’s going to get a pie in the face. It was like that moment in Taken, when he tells his daughter she’s going to get taken…except it was in person, not over the phone. And it was about a pie in the face.

She didn’t have any kind words in return, but she had a smile on her face.  She doesn’t have a poker face…I know she’s going to enjoy it.

I’ve asked others who have had similar lifestyle choices and some are curious too.  Though I’ve heard divorce threatened too.

But then, it brings up the option of pie swapping.  If your wife and my wife won’t let us throw a pie in their faces, what if we do it to each other’s wives?

Or get an external agent.  My brother, though, says he doesn’t want any part of such funny business. Still, he suggested that maybe I could Task Rabbit it.  Probably falls under the “food delivery” category.  I’m sure you can be as specific as you want to be, if the price is right.  “Pick up a pie from Safeway and deliver it to her face.”

I might also pay to get myself pied too.  To try and move suspicion away from me.

But I think part of why I am drawn to it is the feeling of the pie and face becoming one. (Side note here – my brother said he’d prefer a cake to the face instead of a pie.  I take requests.  Though he didn’t approve of me holding an ice cream cake like a bat and introducing the cake to his face that way…go figure.)

Of course, since I’ve felt my pies were to be eaten and not thrown for so long, it hasn’t been easy for me to make the change quickly. The signs are there though. Catherine still smiles when I mention it. I bet she’s smiling as she’s reading this even. And the harsh words are not so harsh anymore.

Plus Marie Callender’s just sent us a Happy Anniversary coupon for two free slices of pie.

Destiny can’t be any clearer.

May 102013

It always starts innocently enough.  Someone in my group talks about The Counter burgers.  Someone else says they haven’t been.  Someone else say they haven’t been in a while. Okay, team lunch there.  Easy enough. But where is the twist? There has to be a twist, doesn’t there?

The fun of The Counter is building your own burger. Wouldn’t it be more fun if someone else built your burger for you? Though it wouldn’t be fair if people were assigned burger partners, so it’d need to be random. That’s how Burger Roulette was born.

Everyone makes a burger. We shuffle the burger forms before giving them to the waiter. Then we also get randomly assigned numbers and when the burgers come out, they are distributed in that order.  No one cares about which burger comes out, just what number burger it is.

Initially, I called it Burger Roulette, after Russian Roulette. Thinking that people are playing with loaded guns/hamburgers. But cause we are well trained computer scientists, as the plans developed, it became more of a prisoner’s dilemma problem. That problem, from game theory, basically has two folks caught doing something bad.  They both get the same deal.  There’s enough evidence to put each of you away for 2 years. But if you turn on your partner, you’ll go free but your partner will get 4 years.  Though if you both turn on each other, you’ll both get 4 years.

Do you turn on your partner or not? Theoretically, you should turn. Because if you don’t turn, you’ll either get 2 years (partner didn’t turn on you) or 4 years (partner turned on you).  Average sentence = 3 years.  If you do turn, you’ll either get 0 years (partner didn’t turn on you) or 4 years.  Average sentence is 2 years. Clear cut call. Theoretically.

The game also has a version called the iterated prisoner’s dilemma, where you play the game with each other many times, and thus, your strategy changes. Hopefully some trust can be built over time.

But let’s get back to the more pleasant (and practical) topic of burgers. Do you make a burger you’d think was the best burger, hoping you’d get your own burger?  (Don’t turn!) Or do you think it’d be fun to create a monster of a burger, hoping you don’t get your own burger? (Kinda turning…I mean, it’s just a burger after all…)

Because we work with each other, there is somewhat of an iterated feel to it. Folks you turn on will you’ll be working with for a while still. They aren’t getting whisked away to a cell somewhere else.

We have been to Dining in the Dark together. So we have trusted that people weren’t messing with your food in the dark already. This is similar, just with burgers, and light. And maybe a shake thrown in. It made a good burger outing quite fun.

The waiter was a little flustered when we shuffled all the cards infront of him, but once he understood what was going it, it made things easier.  All burgers are medium.  Bring us every type of fries. And we really didn’t care who got which burger. How much easier can you make it on a waiter?

Everyone said they made a burger they would be willing to eat.  Though a few qualified it with “but I wouldn’t have ordered it for myself”.  Some had themes, like Thai (peanut sauce, pineapple, sprouts, carrot strings, sliced cucumbers + bacon, just cause Thai food is better with bacon right?), or fire (everything that sounded hot).

And all the burgers were enjoyed.  One (only?) person did get their own burger. And it was one of those folks that qualified it with the “i wouldn’t have ordered it for myself” lines. The most challenging aspect (besides the jalapeños – but that was more of a mental thing) was the size for some people.  I guess people typically get the 1/3 pound burger while I happily checked off the 1 pounder.  The burger I got was only 2/3rds of a pound and I was done before some of the folks were done assessing their burger…but everyone finished.

Cause if you didn’t finish, you got the pleasure of picking up the bill.

Anyway, if you ever wanna play burger roulette/dilemma, I’m down.

Especially when their special shake of the month is Churro.  That thing is fantastic!

Jul 102010

…or any of these other struggling stars, is that lifestyle changes don’t last a lifetime.  They sound like they might, life-style and life-time, but they don’t necessarily last a lifetime.

So, given that the goal of the last body fat percentage weight bet was to make a lifestyle change, we shouldn’t have been shocked to find that 3 months after the bet, the body fat percentage has been creeping the wrong way.  That is, if we were any smarter than Lindsay.

I’ve wanted a lifetime body fat percentage bet.  But have struggled to find people that want in.  It’d basically be split up into teams (reshuffled every so often) and each year, the teams would get body fat weighed and for every individual, you’d get their delta from “athletic” for their gender and age range.  And the team that scores the most below “athletic” for the year wins something. Teams are to allow competition with support groups. Lots of stuff TBD, but first participants need to be TBD.  Let me know if you want in.

Given that that isn’t happening, Shawn wanted a new bet today.  I thought 9 months would be good and we could bet on the next fitness challenge.  He was thinking something in the week timeframe.  Lots of different ideas were thrown around, lots of different concerns were thrown around.

Finally, we settled on a nice, low impact, good for my knee, can do after the kids are asleep challenge that can have a short time frame.

Most miles biked during the rest of July.

We both have mountain bikes.  We’ll be using RunKeeper on the iPhone.  We’ll share our maps with each other so that questionable “rides” can be pointed out. And all rides need to be in loops, by themselves or with an adjacent ride in the system (to avoid having Kari drive Shawn to Tahoe so he can ride down the mountain).

Of course, during this whole conversation, Catherine was constantly impressed with how many King’s Eggrolls I was able to roll through.  Impressed might be stating it too nicely.  But let’s call this new number, a nice, round Cris dozen.

So, nutrition isn’t part of this bet.  We’ll see how that effects things. The sharing of the numbers will be interesting. Each of us will know the other’s number daily…will that motivate or discourage?  We’ll find out.  There are a few reasons why I think Shawn will win and there are a few things going my way.  It’ll be close.  And I think, it’ll be repeatable.  I wouldn’t bet against a repeat bet in August. Or September.

Well, I guess it depends on Shawn’s mood.  I’d be up for it though.

Jan 162010

The Robinson’s were kind enough to deck our family out with shirts with this on them.

And I guess it was kind of a dig, but they’re not really the type to make digs like that, which makes it that much more special of a dig.

Anyway, I wore the shirt yesterday.  And I was planning on buying 2 dozen donuts on the way to work.  But I got a late start, chit chatting with our nanny and Sal and getting her family tickets to go see Avenue Q and explaining why it wouldn’t be appropriate for my kid to go see this play with muppets, yet it was okay for her kids to go.  Double standards and all.

So I thought I could grab a donut at lunch, or a snickerdoodle, or at least a couple cookies from the catered lunch at the interview function I was set to rebel against my shirt.

I got distracted at lunch, figuring out how much more food I could get into the to-go box vs. a plate.  But it was chicken saag…with extra carne asada fajitas on the side under the naan.

And then the interview thing – there were no cookies left.

And when 5 o’clock rolled around and Brian was getting a coffee I looked at the donuts behind the glass and I just kept on venting about work instead of throwing down some change for the donut.

So the shirt kind of worked in a reverse negative backwards kind of way.  We’ll see if it still works post fat dunking.