Archive for February, 2005

Friday: Jana organized some tickets for a Toronto Rock LaCrosse game at the ACC, so Matt, Jared and I met up with her. $35 is a little pricy, but it was a good game. Toronto beat Rochester pretty easily. I think Jana cared more about the cheerleaders than the game, but that’s only because she said so.

Saturday: Matt and I had a lazy day around the house, topped off with a greasy breakfast at Y&E. Saturday night, I went skating at Nathan Philips Square with some of the folks from church, and I’m pretty sure that was my first time skating in just over a year. Even though the rental skates were dull as spoons, it all still came rushing back… the crossovers, the turns and the stops. It’s very reassuring to know that there are some skills that your body just remembers.

Sunday: I played in church in the morning, met Jana for coffee in the afternoon and then we went to Freedomize. Afterwards, I headed to Logan and Amanda’s Oscar Party. Now, I don’t really care about the Oscars, nor do I pretend to understand the politics of how movies win one, so my ballot was pretty weak. REALLY pretty weak. Logan, his sister, and his brother-in-law seemed to be getting every single one right, while I walked out with 6 out of a possible 24 (for 39 points out of 175). I think I owe Dion $2.

I think Ben was doing alright, and Amanda was bottom-feeding with me. I had to leave before everything was done, so I guess I’ll find out today how all the stats worked out.

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Who knew that four little words would make me so happy this morning? I mean, I was already in a good mood and all, but sometimes something happens that just takes your good mood to the next level. In this case, it was the words ‘Roll up the Rim’. I didn’t even notice until I was out of the store on my way to the office and I happened to glance at the cup.

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I’m always up for a challenge, and Jay has come up with a DOOZY. For those of you who are familiar with my eating habits (mostly take-out, microwaved hot dogs, and peanut butter and cheese-slice sandwiches) you’ll know how much of a change this is for me.

Here’s the challenge in Jay’s own words…

I hereby challenge Dave Duncan to eat a healthier, more nutrient rich diet for one month, effective March 1st to April 1st.
The true purpose of the challenge is to see if Dave feels better both physically and mentally as a result.
If Dave successfully completes the challenge, he will enjoy a fine dinner and drink, of his choosing, on me. A fine dinner being the likes of The Outback, The Keg, etc.

The Rules:
– Eat between 5 to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Emphasis on a variety of different coloured vegetables.
– Substitute whole grain or whole wheat products wherever and whenever possible.

Bonus:
– Dave will also enjoy a dessert, of his choosing, on me, if he avoids all products containing MSG (monosodium glutamate).

Tips:
– A serving of fruit would be one banana. A serving of carrots would be one cup. Refer here for further serving size suggestions.
– Suggest rigging up, borrowing, or getting a vegetable steamer. Steamed fresh vegetables make a quick side dish for dinners.
– Fresh vegetables should be first choice, frozen is second, canned is third.

Dave will need lots of encouragement and support from friends, especially with the whole grain products, so please put out a shout for Dave.

I hereby accept Jay’s challenge, although with much trepidation. When I first accepted, I neglected to notice the whole thing about whole grain foods… that means I’m saying goodbye to my beloved Wonderbread.

Starting March 1st, I’ll be updating my progress here in the blog, and I’ll post my meals daily on my calendar to verify that I’m not cheating. Jay passed along a PDF as well, and I’ll post that as my diet draws near.

One exception I’ve requested is that I get one day of grace… March 15th. It’s my birthday, and I’m a firm believer in celebrating with a day of self-indulgence. I’m not planning on eating a whole loaf of Wonderbread… but I’d like to leave that option open. Jay has okayed my condition.

Should I fail in my endeavour, I will treat both Jay and his wife to the same prize he offered me… a fine meal and drink for both of them. I’m sure I’ll also suffer no end of jibes and ribbing until all your throats are sore.

I have just over three days. Where’s my Wonderbread?

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This isn’t the treat I just posted about, but thanks to BoingBoing, I think I’ve found my next Knife Block. I’m giving this to EVERYONE for Christmas 2005.

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My web traffic would lead me to believe that most of my regular readers check this site on or before 10am, so the days where I post late, you either have to come back, or read the post another day. I’m the kind of guy who feels bad for letting you folks down, so for your entertainment… I’m about to dance a jig in my office.

—-Dave dances a jig in his office—-

I really did that. No, seriously.

I slept like the dead last night. That’s pretty uncommon for me as I’m a notoriously bad sleeper. A good night for me is one where I only wake up two or three times because of the tiniest noise, and last night, not only did I sleep right through, but I had some pretty wicked vivid dreams.

In the first one, I was at the cottage (I often am in my dreams) and for some reason I wanted to go and use the outhouse even though I didn’t NEED to use it. Well, the outhouse didn’t want to be found, so we played hide and seek all around the property. Take THAT, Freud!

In my second dream, it was a gorgeous summer day, and I was riding a bicycle all over Toronto. People were waving from driveways and sidewalks. It’s hard to tell how long a dream actually lasts, but this one felt like it went most of the night. I never got tired of pedaling, I never got winded on a hill, and I didn’t get my pants caught in the chain once.

Yeah, so I guess it’s pretty clear that after a night like that, I’m in a pretty awesome mood today. Sure, it’s midday and I’ve been so busy with work that I haven’t been able to post to my blog, respond to some email, or check my regular websites… but today is friday. Oh, friday… where have you been all my life? I wish I could spend every day with you.

Check back later today… there’s a pre-weekend treat coming, courtesy of Jay.

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It’s iceberg day here at the AchtungDavey blog. Why’s that? Why not? In my morning surfing, I came across a few different articles about icebergs, which lead to some casual googling about them, which finally lead to some serious research. Just so you know, I do REAL work as well. Seriously.

I’m a big fan of Ernest Hemingway, and he was a big fan of icebergs too. In second year of University, I learned about the so-called ‘Hemingway Iceberg Theory’ and took it to heart in my writing style. You see, Hemingway felt that writing was like conversation, and in conversation, you don’t supply every little detail. Here’s his theory in his own words…

“If a writer of prose knows enough about what he is writing about he may omit things that he knows and the reader, if the writer is writing truly enough, will have a feeling of those things as strongly as though the writer had stated them. The dignity of movement of an iceberg is due to only one-eighth of it being above water.”
-“Death In the Afternoon”, Scribner’s, 1932, Chap. 16, 192-

Simply put, if you make the effot to engage someone in the story, you can give the story more depth by leaving out details that would otherwise be needed to give context and perspective. With 7/8 of an iceberg submerged, you can still see what it is and where it’s moving. You have all the information you need, but you’re only seeing a tiny bit.

As an immensely private person, I took Hemingway’s theory to heart in my personal life too; thinking that if my interactions with people were genuine enough, I could keep big parts of me submerged, and my interactions would make those parts understood without being spoken of. More simply, I expected people to be able to accurately judge my character and read my emotions based on very little information aside from what they saw on the surface… how I interacted with them.

I guess as a theory it makes some sense, but in practice it’s horribly flawed. First of all, everyone wants to know how big an iceberg is. Just looking at the unsubmerged portion of anything doesn’t tell you much. Second, what can you really tell about a man’s character just by interacting? What emotion can you read? Very little, and that causes a lot of problems. Third, there’s none of that cool sounding ‘grace of movement’ that Hemingway talked about.

So, in summary… I’m trying to move to a ‘Beachball Theory’ now. Also, icebergs should stay in the literary world where they belong, and not in personal theories… or in Belfast Harbour.

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The current temperature in downtown Toronto is -5 degrees (without the windchill, which is probably significant) and I just got an email from my parents, who are on a cruise in the Gulf of Mexico. They just stepped off the ship in Guatemala… which is NOT -5 degrees. That is all.

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So I’m sitting around on another boring night at home when the phone rings… it’s Mike Brubacher… and he’s in my lobby.

Mike is a good friend from KW, and if you’ve spent some time at my cottage or in my gallery, he’s the guy cooking breakfast in the cowboy hat… every morning.

Anyways, Mike was working in TO yesterday and today, and popped by to say ‘hi’. He ended up just crashing in our living room and heading back to work this morning. This, my friends, is why I have a futon in the living room. Feel free to pop by anytime.

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